maandag 29 mei 2017

30 day kit challenge! Day #8 was a fast one!

Day #8 (29th of May 2017) was a fast one.

  • 2nd Polski Fiat is now finished.
  • Bison is now based and ready for for concrete and final finishing.
  • Salvaged a ZIL-157 from the bottom of the bits box. It had a built cab, but broken rear axles, no headlights,, broken load bed. All fixed now, with some salvaged Blitz headlights, glue and extra reinforcing plasticcard. Plus a base. Will be painted as a beat up civillian truck, either Russian markings on the rear or just plain.

  •  Picked a new PST T-55 from the recent stash, looked at some pics of one with a gutted engine bay and went to work. Needs some clean up but basically done. Will be a (recently) gutted one for any area really, no roadwheels, just a few swing arms, no engine, turret is still there but it is basically dead and just weatherd scenery for a warzone or scrapyard.

Looks good enough for Government work. 

Done for today, already have some stuff lined up for tomorrow but that will be a short evening as I'm meeting up with a fellow builder for a small chat.

So, on day #8 I'm at 5 items finished, 4 WIP's. Going strong :)

30 day kit challenge! Day #6 - #7 progress

Day #6 I just removed a bunch of parts from the sprue for cleaning, then blogged, then tucked in early for a change. The kids were away for most of day #7, so I made some headway.. And as you can see from the kind of work I have to do, I'm not lowbaling myself through this challenge by doing just fastbuilds or salvage jobs either!

Basic stripped down chassis. everything underneath had added plasticcard to make it wargames proof.

After the basic cab was made, another layer of plasticcard was added with the correct holes (the insides will just be painted black) and the steel plate with a pattern I could actually punch out added to the radiator.

After doing a mock up in cardboard, I cut thye card, made the holes in each panel and built it, reinforcing all the joins from the inside and some cross bars.

And this is where I am now, the blue parts are blue foam which is very easy to sand which makes making shapes like these very easy to do, even if it takes a while for the Modge Podge to keep it stuck down on the scratched plasticcard.. Now it is time to apply the thinned filler for the concrete look and then do the tarp on top of the cab and base it.
In case you are wondering what on earth I'm building, I'm building a vehicle that is commonly known as a Bison. Basically a older heavy truck uparmoured with concrete. Yes, concrete. Have a look at the Wikipedia entry for more information. >> Bison

The model I'm making is a Type 2, used by the RAF and the Home Guard, and when I saw a picture of it I was struck by the resemblance the truck has to the one in the old 1/76 Matchbox kit of Monty's Caravan. I've been on the look out for that kit for some time now as I need it as a donor vehicle for the back end to put on the Lancia and use as a (captured) command vehicle for my 8th Army. I had planned to reuse the truck either as a wreck or as a converted commercial truck, but with this idea in my head I just could not let it go and bought the kit from a local shop for the sum of 9,50 euros (so nothing like the 12-15 Pounds plus shipping that I see online) and it arrived yesterday. This is also keeping in line with the mantra that what I get in the mail, it should be built asap and not linger in the attic in a box.

Anyway, a prime example of my Ooh, Shiney! ss I don't have Homeguard, BEF or Germans suitable for the period, but it is suitable as a commentators vehicle for Gaslands and a great way to flex my creative muscle, aka my brain. I'm not planning on building any more though! :D Well, maybe a Type 1....

Right, at the end of day #7 I have started on 7 items, of which 3 are now done. If I can keep this up for the remaining 3 weeks I am a very happy man indeed as 30 kits is almost an entire shelf.!

zaterdag 27 mei 2017

30 day kit challenge! Day #2 - #5 progress

Right-O, this building business is keeping me off the computer a lot, so that is a good thing for starters. So here is my progress sofar.

The Day #1 Build - 52-K 85mm AA gun (22nd of May)
Now fully based up, I just need to make 4 simple wheel mounts and then she is ready (and can be added to the count)

The Day #2 Build - S-Models BMP-1 (23rd of May)
This is a salvage job from some second hand tanks that I bought. The turret had been raised by almost 10mm, the commanders hatch has been cut away, the lights are missing and the commanders head was actually a home sculpted bears head......jeah, odd, innit? Also the trackwork was broken. Most of this is fixed now, need to add some small details and redo the hatch. I have magnetised the BMP turret.
Paint scheme will be for the Taliban/Northern Alliance/Rebels/Raiders, so mostly weathered green and that is it. Turret will be useful when I make the Technical conversion with it or for use on other vehicles or fortified positions.

Day #3 Build - 2x FtF Polski Fiats (24th of May)
 Super useful and good looking medium truck. Not that hard to build, but you have to keep an eye on 2 things. The front axle mount, including the bumper, is really, really thin. I added extra blocks of plasticcard to strengthen it. Secondly, because it is so thin, if you use too much glue like I accidentally did, it practically melts the wheel nubs and the wheels just sag a lot. Use it sparingly (like I did on the 2nd model, much better)

 Number 2 in progress.
By itself, the cover doesn't sit well. Added 4 pieces of thin plasticcard to improve that so you can get more dual use out of it. One of these will be a civillian for Pulp and WW2 uses (and a bit after), the other is for the desert war. Really good kits, I can reccomend them a lot :) #1 is finished.

Day #4 Build - Airfix salvage job (25th of May)
I picked up a cheap Airfix Rescue Vehicle set at Militracks this week, and it was missing a few parts. And do I really need a fire extinguisgher vehicle? Nah...... In comes some trimming, a full front repair and using PSC donor parts, we now have a civillian beauty for Partisan Warfare of for Operation Sealion.

 Quite a bit of chopping and fitting of donor parts, but that should do it, FINISHED!
Rear end. Good as is.

Day #5 Build - Dapol Water Tower (26th of May)
Dropped in the mail this morning, brandnew. Made it a bit different and kept the space between the legs open so I can park stuff under it or whatever I can think of. It's quite big so will work quite well for 28mm too.

A little detailing is needed but essentially done.

Day #6 Build (27th of May). I've grabbed this one: 
....but other then cleaning parts, nothing yet sofar.

So, sofar 2 done, and the rest is waiting on finishing but I keep going at it. It's nice to be very motivated to get them built and ready for paint.

dinsdag 23 mei 2017

30 day kit challenge! (say what now?) Day #1

Greetings fellow addicts! It's time for something new.....

Glorious indeed. So what is the 30 day kit challenge? Well, something I just made up. I'm a bit fed up with the tons of kits that I am buying and not building. So with that in mind I'm starting the 30 day kit build challenge TM.

Goals are simple, you will build kits during the 30 day challenge:

  • Any material (plastic, resin, metal, wood).
  • New in the box or partially built, it matters not.
  • Gun, tank, truck, aircraft, ship, animal? Your call.
  • Kit must be basically finished, based if you prefer that, to qualify.
  • Finished kit must be ready for primer.
  • Resin and metal upgradesets can be applied after the build.....the goal is to get kits built and ready for primer, not to finish them with paint and varnish etc.
  • You decide how many kits/models you want to build in the 30 day period.
  • You set the penalty for not meeting your goal (and after that it is the honor system)
Anything beyond that is up to you tbh.

My goal is, in the period from 22-5-2017 up to  21-6-2017, is to build a kit every single day, up to a grand total of 30 kits. If I can build more kits per day, then jay, if I can't build too many during the week and have to finish them in the weekend, no problem. 30 is my goal and I'm sticking to that.
My penalty is that if I don't make my target, I will sell a kit from my stash equal to the amount of kits built I'm short of 30.

So, starting with Day #1 (22nd of May 2017), I'm starting with an Ace kit. Yes, I must be a glutton for pain and despair.
To make things even worse for myself, I've decided to make the gun a German beute for a static position, as well as one that can be mounted on a guntruck as I've seen them used in the Middle East like that, and so for TW:2K as well.

As it's 2 in the morning now and I have a schoolday, I'm stopping with it for today. It is basically 95% done, it just needs a custom base. The gunmount is magnetised so I can mount it on a ship or a truck.

I've left some bits off, placed some bits in a slightly easier to paint position and made sure the seat would stay on.

This is what I am going for:
Beute gun in static AA position, with wheels removed. This was also used late war as a ad hoc AT gun (as it basically has the 85mm gun from the T-34/85) which is what I am building it for. Just what my Volksgrenadeers need.

Gun is now 95% done. Things to do are:
  • Base it.
  • Make 4 wheel hubs and mount them.
  • Design the defensive works as you see in the picture (AFTER I build a 88 as that is the max size of what I need so I don't need to make defensive structures for each individual gun.
I've brought some kits down from the attic, not sure yet what I will build as my number #2.

Current status: Day 1: 0 done.

Feel free to join in btw. Get shit done :)

zondag 21 mei 2017

Militracks survived!

Very tired, plenty of pain in my legs and back, but I would not have missed it for the world.

I have a load of pictures and videos up on my FB page (That particular folder is open to everyone) >> Militracks 2017 and if you are ever in the country when this event happens, I can reccomend it. I've been trying to go there for years and everytime something got in the way.

  • Running WW2 German vehicles, lot's
  • You can actually get a ride on one (if you pay)
  •  Free acces to the museum
  • Large military equipment market
  • Amazing amount of spare parts (albeit not always in great condition)
  • A couple of extra seats would be nice, especially for people like me.
  • Shows like this also attract some......hmm, sympathisers of the wrong kind. One chap passed me wearing an SS shirt underneath his camouflage jacket, and a White Power cap on his head. Another in line in front of me had a swastika tattooed on the back of his neck. A diverse crowd indeed.
  • The stall advertising his wares as "dug up from around Stalingrad" with a lot of rusty stuff and quite a few helmets with damage from explosions. I've seen videos of how they excavate and what they do with the soldiers bones and anything they can't sell.
  • The amazing amunt of tat for sale. Toy guns, normal standard ammo tins that cost maybe 5 euros at the local army dump are sold here (and bought!) for a tenner, and lot's of cheap ass repro's
Oh well. I got to see my favourite Stug in the world (and yes, I toutched it) and made a few pics of how she looked after being driven for a bit. I also donated some money for her upkeep and a got a nice mug for it.

 Booty shot!

 On the way out, we passed alongside the track and Stuggie was out for its last run of the day, and even I, with my crutch, could keep up with her. He sure is treating her gently.

There were a couple of kit sellers at the market area as well. A couple with new stuff, one that I wasn't sure if they were selling second hand stuff for new prices, and a seller who turned out to charge a fiver for each kit that I grabbed. So after a small chat we had an understanding (when we finally stopped talking German to each other when we both realised the other was Dutch as well), and I picked up this pile of kits for a bit les then a fiver per kit.

Yeah, I'm a bad boy, I should not have, but the M6 is going straight into my USA box, the BTR-152 in my TW:2K or Taliban box, the T-55 also in the TW:2K box, the M60A3....maybe also the TW:2K box, or the Israeli or Iranian box. Humber Mark II for my British 8th Army, 2 5.5 inch guns for my Normandy British, another Bofors gun that might become German, and the Emergency set I've been wanting for ages, for a desert Ambulance and the other truck to be converted into a (civvy) medium truck.Also some electricl towers and a bag of spare bits for them.

Next week I'm starting the 1 kit build or 10 figures cleaning per evening, and to get a headstart I grabbed 2 FtF Fiats 621 from the stash (a review on those later), closed up both cabins, and almost completely built 1.

The Fiat, being basiclally a Ford, is suitable for a lot of things and quite a few historical periods. It comes with a tarp, which sits a bit too loose for my liking, so I added some thing plasticcard slivers to keep it easier in place. Suspension is also a bit weak, but more about that in my review.

Need to sleep now, tired.

zaterdag 20 mei 2017

Jumping from branch to branch

Finished building 2 metres of Spanish Riders

Now to do some paint tests on the wood and metal spare bits to see which works best, but that is for next week.

Spent some time on my new iron horse I picked up today second hand. Busted tail light, busted saddle and a loose steeringwheel. Put on a new saddle and taillight, oiled everything, tightend all the screws. Will give it a good cleaning with the girls on sunday, then hunt for a backseat so I can take the girls for a ride with Kim on her bike. Will ask my dad to give it a proper look to see if I missed anything though. And no, there is nothing wrong with my old bike, but that is a male model (so the high bar) and I've been feeling increased pain lately in my right leg and hip from lifting my leg over the bike to hop on, as well as extra strain on my damaged knee and spine. No need to all of that with this "mommy bike" (it's a "daddy bike" now.)

Just need to find a way to keep the crate in place I've always had on my steering wheel as the extra stowage space is very welcome. And to clean and sell my old bike to break even as much as possible to make up for the purchase of this bike.

And yes, I call it a bike. Not a bicycle.....

And jumping onto the next branch, todays mistery find at the goodwill store was this funnel device......I have no idea what it is or what it did other then funneling something, but it has now become a industial rock grinder for Necroumda, This is not a Test Industrial area, and as a turnning point for Gaslands. It is big and non descript enough for all of that.

I cut off the prongs from the underside, gave it a new base and I will paint it all rusted up, and when done, glue some granite chips in the inside.

Final branch of the day is that I received my Lancer Miniatures order, but I want to discuss some parts of it with them before I do a review. The overall quality is very good, with only 1 minor issue and 1 issue of me not agreeing with the sculpting quality of a set I've ordered. But fast reply, fast turn around and fast delivery will make me come back soon.

Meanwhile, I grabbed a PSC Carrier from the attic to convert with a 25mm French Cannon for the DAK, and I'm looking at the box with spare aircraft wheels that could come in handy for one of these....

Yeah, I know, scatter brain.

Now I'm off to bed, cause tomorrow I'm going to Militracks in Overloon.
Militracks 2017

woensdag 17 mei 2017

I'm feeling a bit fenced in

Scatterbrain at work.

Saw something I liked, calculated what I needed, used the GET TO THE CHOPPER!...ahem, The Chopper to cut everything to size, and then went full supeglue mode. And that is where I am at now, still glueing my way through 160 bits of matchstick and 40 piecs of sateh stick and quite a bit of wire.

Nothing to see here, just severe autism at work, cause my head says making 2 metres of barbed wire Spanish Riders is the perfect thing to be ding right now......<sigh>

zondag 14 mei 2017

Partisan Progress and darnit, I've been banned from another shop

Well, no more Britannia for me it seems. I've been kindly asked to take my business elsewhere as Andy was saddend that he cannot give me miniatures with the standard that I'm looking for. He is disheartend by my dissappointment.

Ehm, ok. So I'm informing him of the high miscast rate that he keeps sending out in every single order since last year, with pictures and ideas about the causes (worn moulds, mould slippage, defective vents), not asking for refunds (the very badly cast Panzerjagers were a exception to that norm, and cost me way more money and time in shipping them back as I was ever refunded, but I don't even mind that) and just kept orddering again and again when I had the need for certain figures.

Well, no more it seems. I think this is a shitty way to treat a repeat customer.

So, since I've buying my kits 2nd hand, it seems it is time again to buy my miniatures 2nd hand online again then, is it. I'll enlist some of my UK friends for that though, as most Ebay sales seem to have the Ebay Shipping program, which must be the biggest ripoff on their side of the continent....12 quid shipping for a few miniatures, just cause it saves you informing customs and insurance. For inter EU shipping, which isn't even a thing, you tossers.... anyway. I've asked Chris to bid in my name on a Taliban lot and I will keep my ee on Ebay for a bit to see if anything suitable pops up.

I've switched shops straight away and I will now give Lancer Miniatures a try. I've had some of his stuff on my checklist for a while now, and when SP over at the Guild informed me they have a guy with a homing/carrier pigeon the decision was quickly made to buy that and the things on my wanted list.

Homing/Carrier pigeon you say? Yes.....

REW to WW1:

Carrier pigeons were used to transport messages. Heck, many famous pigeons were used in WW2 were used as well, so my Partisan Radio Team is getting carrier pigeons, dammit. Considering the Germans were pretty good at finding radio signals, not too far fetched of an idea so I'm sticking to it.

I also ordered a sniper to convert for the Partisans, and an officer with a raised sword to convert to a bad ass Balkan Partisan offcier, cause, you know, sword! And some other things like small 25mm and 47mm AT guns for my 8th Army.

Also, after the buyer dragged his feet for almost a month, I finally got my payment for 10 old GW publications, and exchanged the exact amount for the cheaspest Italeri church I could find. Yes, this one:

It's for the Mediterranian and the Balkans are in that area, so a nice thing to put on the side of the table (or in the middle) and make houses around it.

Piers is highly motivated atm to get his anti partisan force done and I'm highly motivated tyo get my partisans painted, with the caveat that I work much slower, but most of the guys I have are primer ready so I might get some painting done next week, I hope. I'm still woefully short of troops and support staff to make at least a viable force. Oh, and we have to add rules for mines to the Partisans.

Anyway, here is an update on my MG08 team and my Messenger / Partisan Mounted Scout Leader.
 New head for the MG08, added a scarf and a beard to hide the join. Not too bad I say.

"Fat German on a horse" as he is called, converted with new hair, a moustache and a eye patch. need to clean up some mould lines, smooth the areas where I removed the canteens and stuff, and maybe add a Ppsh in his hand, I have some PSC ones spare, just change the round ammo box in a banana clip. Actually, he would make a brilliant leader too :) ... but I have other plans for that. Piers has some Britannia spare for me, including horses, that will come in handy for him as the rest of his unit.

donderdag 11 mei 2017

A praise, a rant, and maybe a small cultist chant

Sorted out a ton of stuff today, for school, family and little bit of the hobby. . Based up all of my Terracotta zombies I purchased at Impact 2017, took a picture of that, then promplty converted the standard bearer into a normal one, no standard (and no hand), as these wilol function as just zombies for a Chinatown or Ronin/Daisho battle.

Just need to base the clipped head from the banner as well. Very nice figures, pity they are OOP.

Picked up my trade box today, with a Academy M35 truck, a Heller 109 B/C that actually does come with a canopy (unlike the last trade) and has the iconic early mouth style intake. Ad a dual seat Skyraider, because..... why not. Only cost me 2 kits and shipping in return.

I also passed my First Aid exam yesterday, most of it went swimmingly other then the imitated torn leg muscle ( never been a sports guy and never had anyone near me have this happen to them, so besides a coldpack and giving them some painkillers there wasn't much I could actually...I just needed to be more confident in my respsonse. Same went for a guy with a painful ear, and it hurt inside his head. No bugs, no hits, just a red ear and pain in his head. I gave him some painkillers as well and told him to see his doctor if it was still the same tomorrow. Actually I was supposed to give him a hotpack for his ear, but just painkillers would do fine too. Bandaging, CPR, AED use, staying calm and informative to the victim, no problems there.

Fun though, sitting in a room full of very nervous people, you could smell the fear :D

But yeah, I passed, and as a gift for me doing so I'm buying a ticket to Militrack for the sunday show and to see actual, functioning WW2 German vehicles. My favourite desert Stug rebuild is coming too, I can't wait to see it live and his Marder next year.

Then we come to my Grubby Tanks order I arrived today. As youy may or may not know, I've stopped buying his resin vehicles as the casting quality is incredibly low. But his figures were fine, with the occasional mould slippage or other casting issue. Well, 1/3rd of this order has issues. Either too little metal, or excessive metal build up on faces and arms, some mould slippage and then there is this  in the Russian officer pack.

Yes, he really is that flat...... :(

Already emailed him, again, about the defects. At this rate every order I make has defects, and sure, they will get replaced, but this really should not be necessary to begin with.

More tomorrow :)

dinsdag 9 mei 2017

It really helps to read an army list BEFORE you build stuff, you know?

So, in between my studies, I've managed to build and base 2 Russian 45mm M1937 AT guns for my Partisans, one on the move and 1 in position, after getting inspired.

Apolagies for the shitty quality pictures....still using just my phone....

 Gun on the move in to (or out of?) position. Most pics I've seen of it being manhandled is with 2 people at the front of the gun and 1 in the back steering it....I think? Put a muzzle cap on it to keep the dirt out plus 2 cases of shells. I have no gun crew yet so these are just stand ins. It's my (current) standard towing base (which is T shaped) with the back end held in place by a pin, to keep it level with whatever is towing or pulling it. I thought about adding lift handles on the legs, but stopped after adding doing the tow hooks on both guns. I just want to have these done so I can move on to the next lot.

I've added some extra reinforcement between the shield and the base of the gun as for some odd reason both guns had the mounting pin bent and split and even after bending it back and using glue, the gunshield sat at a tilted angle. Not anymore :)  The in situ gun is placed on my favourite Y shaped base. This way I can easily add and remove troops and keep them as close to the gun as possible.

So, all good then, innit?

Nope. I got inspired by seeing pics of the Partisan 37mm AT gun in action:
....and assumed that the 45mm one would be the upgrade for the Partisans. I assumed wrongly :(

The basic gun is the 37mm (for which I can use a captured PaK36 or 37mm M1930 - for wargaming purposes the same gun) and the upgrade is the 47mmL32

Technically speaking a licence built Böhler. Drat. I don't have those in my stash. No, ffs.......

Well, not to fear!

After comparing the stats of both guns, they have a identical HE and AP value, so there is no problem using them as is.

Crisis averted! Now get these suckers painted up asap.

PS: The guns are PSC 4 in a box Russian AT guns (45mm 1937, 45mm 1942 and the Infantry gun) and the spare barrels can be used for bunkers or other purposes. The Partisans are from the Kelly's Heroes range from Grubby Tanks.