maandag 10 december 2018

Back to the Future: Desert Town

Remember the 20mm desert town I made a few years ago? And them dumped into boxes for later.

Well, later is now. With my thumb removed from my arse, having a quiet sunday afternoon with the girls crafting and me firing up the airbrush after getting the first box of buildings (Kim was off for a high tea).

So.....1 basecoat of Vallejo RAL8000 airbrush primer later (and a bit of grey primer on some doors for practice).

And the basics are done. And then realised some bases are not completely sanded yet <sigh>.

My high quality phone cam *cough* bullshit *cough* washes it out so much it looks grey, but these are washed with Brown and Black  and then airbrushed on a 45 degree angle with VMC Dark Sand. (just trying out stuff here to get the look)

Slightly better shots of how they look now. VMC paints are now 10+ years old and in need of replacing. Many have clogged beyond use, and with my more frequent use of the air paints (not just Vallejo but many others) I think it is time to no longer to use them for my airbrush (as all of the cleaning when they clog (and clog they do!) is getting annoying. So, I picked up some AK Real Colours lately, and the AK RC079 CARC Tan (beats me what that means) come damn close to the Dark Sand I used so I am giving that a try, and will highlight it with AK RC041 Portland Stone and that will be the paintbase for all of them.

I grabbed the 3 water trougs as well as they are nice and small practice models. The missing basing sand on a few isn't an issue either, I'll paint the buildings first anyway and the real weathering is done first, and the basing finished last.

The factory/barrack toilets are ready to be primed.....but I can't for the life of me get a colour in my head that is neutral yet fitting. Pictures of the wrecked one are plentiful though, like this one:

On a sad side note: Googling "Open pit latrines" breaks your heart. Drownings, and the amount of people in the world who don't even have this most basic of toilet plus the pics of kids.

zondag 9 december 2018

Northag: Buying the farm - the actual farm I bought from Leven.

Was pleasantly surprised by the order I made with Leven a while back being handed to my wife (who was a bit less, shall we say, happy about it).

A slow unpack later (everything is individually  wrapped with extra protection on all of the chimneys which is very, very good product care) all the bits are in front of me. Grand total of the order is 30 GBP.

I ordered:
- ACC07 - Garden Accessory Set
- FAR06 - Corrugated Shed
- HOU08 - Detatched Bungalow
- IND03 - Modern Storage Tanks
- IND16 - Joinery Shop
- MIL01 - Airfield MT Workshop (4pcs)

First impression: Leven still makes a great quality product for a nice price. Definately reccomended.

Second impression: The airfield MT Workshops, when viewed from the side, have sag in the front and back. It is a rather large piece and not a major issue, but it is there. The Modern storage tanks, the 2 large ones have the same miscast....but again, no major issue and easily solved with some spare plastic. I washed the pieces in hot soapy water as always, but they were still a bit slippery. I sprayed them with degreaser but after that that it still felt very smooth. With my current "hand-issue" I have a bit of trouble feeling is the resin is just very smooth or still has some mould release on it.

I'll start with the Airfield shops as I want to want to make 4 identical pieces that all have their own feed storage, clean up the very few resin bubbles and then give them a good scrub again, add some details and glue them to nails for painting. But more on that later.

vrijdag 7 december 2018

It might smell a bit funny - part 1

As I'm waiting for parts I was cleaning my harddrive of no longer needed bits, and ran across a picture of the S&S toilet block for Africa (or other places).

Which I like, but let's face it.... not paying 10 quid each plus shipping for a bubbly cast that needs fixing, cleaning and basing anyway. So, a few bits of scrap foam, a plasticcard base and cardboard for the panels later, I have the basics for a very shitty toilet on the left, a UN sponsored toilet on the right that I need to add a handwash basin on the side and a privacy wall in the front of the doors, and a army barracks/factory toilets in the back. So I get to paint a well made, a ok one and one that has gone completely to shit.....jay.

As it is now planned, paint the army one this week first, while doing finishing work on the other 2 when I have the time so something might be done in between.

dinsdag 4 december 2018

What a difference a 2 weekly Life coach makes.

Heleen has been my Life coach for 2 months now, and we did work in the attic and living room to make it all a lot less messy. And now we are tackling my hobby room so I actually have space to work, paint and photograph to sell stuff. Granted, I can't do a whole lot without frequent breaks, but I sure do work.

So I've gone from this:

To this:

The last eyesore is the gamestable full of stuff, but I will be hitting that between now and the next session. Also I need to put the AB back in its hidey hole.

maandag 3 december 2018

Air Raid sirens / speakers - a trip down memory lane - completed

...and with the base done and the varnish dry, the speakers are ready to dispense the word of God/Allah/El Presidente.

Northag: Buying the farm - part 2, subsection A

Had a spare hour so painted the little stinker. Airbrush base for the yellow, and then just 2 dozen washes and detailing. Looking forward to receiving the scenery I ordered so I can modify it and put it on the final base.

zondag 2 december 2018

Air Raid sirens / speakers - a trip down memory lane - part 1

Back in Juli 0f 2015 I made a master of a speaker and press moulded them a few times, not all very succesful. Made a top for the Minaret I was then working on and it was then forgotten.

As I want to spend less on the hobby and you know, finish stuff, going over the WIP drawers is a smart thing to do as they are stuffed to the brim with unfinished kit.

So, here she is ( I picked a few other things to play with, but settled on just the speakers in the end)

I added a mechanically bit on the top, to cover the drill hole for the power cable that now smeaks down the pole and into the floor, nicely bolted down. A bit of tape keeps it stuck to the lower part of the pole.

Sofar I've painted the speakers, mechanical bits and pole. The sneaking cable, hatch and concrete floor are for a later time....maybe tomorrow evening, maybe monday. I will not start painting anything else till this is done....which is somthing I should have done ages before. But hey :)

I'm also motivating myself to get the desert city done, so this one going on the top of the Minaret is my proverbial kick in the bum. It will do double duty on Russian (backed) installations as well...stay tuned for those :)

zaterdag 1 december 2018

Northag: Buying the farm - part 2

Consdering the amount of bullshit in my life these days, what is more apt to make than a parked liquid manure tank trailer for Northag?

We start off with a PSC  M3 Honey spare fuel tank, and 2 roadwheels from the old Matchbox StuG IV (I think), both 20mm scale.

<then I do some magic, use my extensive parts box, enjoy Youtube while sniffing glue, and cough>

Et voila!

Looking forward to painting it when I find the time, maybe next week or so.

woensdag 28 november 2018

Northag: Buying the farm - part 1, subsection A

Now I remember why I loved painting 6mm. Quick results, and you can go to town.....none of that "wash and a drybrush" stuff for me, you can paint Microarmour nicely even if it means using a magnifier (though in this case I did not need to.

Double coat of varnish and ready to be placed on a bit of scenery....when it arrives and I paint it that is.

Northag: Buying the farm - part 1

Right, Northag. 6mm is the scale I've chosen. And I love to scratchbuild.

So, 1+1.....

I've got virtually nothing left from my previus Modern 1/300 stuff, so it is a fresh start. I just want to order what I can build in a certain amount of time, and taking it one step at a time. Well, I can try at least.

I'll start off with a Dutch/German farm complex with bits on seperate bases. I always liked that style and I'm sticking with it. I'll be making cow pens, the farm, storage sheds, farm equipment and the works so stuff can be swapped out around. I think I will order mostly from Leven to keep it all from one company, easier that way.

But first, to test what I can with my hands, a old trailer to park next to a shed. Or something. All Heroics and Ross parts, plus time and effort.

Nothing huge, but fun to do :)

Their 20 feet container and 2 rear axles off of a Bedford truck. Some plasticcard and a broken pin.

donderdag 15 november 2018

The axe falls (on some projects)

Not on my head, fortunately.

Atm I have a 2 weekly visit from Heleen, a professional clean up coach. For 3 hours we go through everything, trash what is trash, set aside what can be sold, save what can be saved for the future. I'm a broken man after those 3 hours, but on average we take out a garbage bag of waste (paper, plastic, broken stuff etc), fill 2-3 cases with sellable stuff and save 1-2 cases of stuff that I want to sort again at a later date.

It's nice to have someone do the physical work that I'm currently not up to, I'm usually beat 30 minutes in and that is just by sitting on a chair and telling her "trash, sell or keep"! The shit I saved up in 20 years, dear Lord....

Also, I'll be axing more stuff. Starting Iran-Iraq in 15mm was ....stupid. Yes, you can get a lot of stuff very easy in 15mm, but at cost. I think I have sunk about 200 or more into it by now, but I'm killing it. I would have to fund and paint both sides on my own as none of my friends have an interest. Well, when it is all painted, but God knows how long that would take. Ages in my current state. SELL

We decided 1/300 would be the right scale to play Northag in. Then I realised that even the cheap brand of micro armour is 75 cents for a tank now, so I'm hunting for cheap used stuff, which is proving to be rather unsuccesful. Also no idea yet what basing standards we are looking at, so atm I just ordered about 10 quid worth of bits to see if I can still convert these guys into something decent.

I ordered the Cruel Seas rulebook. IF we are going to play this, it will most likely be in 1/600 and 1/700 as that fits our budgets. Still a big IF. For now, just work with card cut outs.

For 2019, I'm joining a 1/3000 Cold War naval event. As far as I know I have a ton of ships for that so it would be just a matter of painting them. We need to work out the what and when details first.

Also for 2019 is the Road to Berlin campaign in 20mm. Or in the case of my Germans, retreat to Berlin. Not sure how much I can manage for that with my hands, but I will do my best.

 Anyhow, for 2019 (and as always, take this with a grain of salt) ....

High Priority
- 20mm Late War Germans
- Enough 20mm Vietcong porters for a scenario I am working on.
- 20 minutes a day Challenge is a damn smart idea
- 20mm Partisans/Volkssturm
- Scenery
- 6mm testers
- Sell shit
- Get in more pratice with the airbrush

Medium Priority
- Kill Team
- 20mm Russians
- 20mm TW2K
- Wrecks
- 20mm Firebase
- Civillians/Refugees

Low Priority
- 15mm Sci-Fi
- 20mm Taliban
- Any desert stuff
- Gaslands

Of course, being tired and in pain all the time will work against me, but surely......20 minutes a day......must be something I can manage.

woensdag 7 november 2018

Partisan Maxim rework 99% ready

I picked up some Grubby Tanks MMG VC teams in a pre order at Crisis, only to realise they are firing antiquated Maxims <sigh>. But waste not, want not, so a quick filing, headswap and very little GS later we have this.....

Option 2 of the Partisan MG Team, the Maxim. Not sure if that is meant to be the wheeled shielded version, but being Partisans I'm assuming they are not very high up on the MG food chain, so this old banger should do them nicely. Tbh I'm not sure what gun it actually is supposed to be....the tripod is reversed (most likely to help casting), it had the flash hider of a Vickers but not the cover or other a bit of a mish mash of guns....I guess? Made a condensor can, added some lead wire for the tube. Need to file off the sight and replace it with some upright brass wire. Als do some trials with some thicker paper to make the fabric  ammo bands. His head is from the German crew of the Greek Caique pack, it comes with 3 useful generic figures, 2 with beards....which are perfect for my Partisans. The last gun I need to convert is the MG-34 and then all 3 options are available.

Getting sidetracked, as usual, I also picked up the Britannia Vietnam Firebase Command bunker. Then sawed and sanded off 1/3rd of the resin. As I really dislike lift oof roofs for most buildings, I sanded the sides of that as well and have now glued it down with expoxy to make sure it stays on, and will fix the seam  sandbag at a time. For a Britannia resin piece, the bubble holes aren't as bad as usual which was a pleasant surprise!

I've orderd 400 resin barrels for this project as to make the Firebase like I want it. The bunker will have a row of them surround it, as well as some plus sandbags in front of the door (that I also enlarged). I'm trying to find a iron lattice tower with the right dimensions to function as the antenna, but dumping 25 quid incl shipping for a single H0 is a bit rich, so I guess off to China I go?

I'm not going for the red dust allover you see in parts of Vietnam....when needs be, this one will have to double as a rebel bunker or whatever I feel like. Same for the defensive works. In the end I have a finite amount of room here.

Not much else to say.....tried a new sandy yello on the Grot tank and having a good long think about it. These wrists are not doing me any favours and even typing for more then a few minutes at a time turns my hands into claws. So I just sit here, do some sculpting, sort some stuff for sale.

Oh, Crisis was a blast, sale went reasonably ok, some stuff just did not shift while others that have been for sale for ages were snapped up quickly. But going to a show kills me. I have very little stamina left, everything hurts all the time, ad it was very hard to focus when I finally packed the lot back in the car and went for a stroll around the show to see what was there....which was a lot! I hope next year I will be able to visit it and enjoy it a bit more. Who knows. I might even be in less pain.

woensdag 24 oktober 2018

You call that a mining laser? THIS is a mining laser!

I received 2 Sentinels in the mail today, 1 to match to my old Forgeworld Load Lifter kit, and one to upgrade with a mining laser.

The man portable mining laser is a tad weedy though for a Sentinel, so.....

Looks like a match made in heaven.
This will do quite nicely :)

maandag 22 oktober 2018

Harry? Harry?

Harry got some paint. Lots more to do, I can't paint a lot as it just hurts too damned much.

Slow but steady.

dinsdag 16 oktober 2018

Battle in Holland - My trip to Rotterdam and the NNG

 Yes, it is the Netherlands, I know.....

Visited the No Name Gamers in Rotterdam this sunday, and fought 2 300 pt battles with my Germans. One vs British Para's in a meeting engagement, and one defending the (Son) bridge against US Para's.

Jeez, para's are tough nuts to crack.

My list was a Grenadeer platoon with Panzerfausts, MG-42 and a static MG-42. A FHQ for additional BR and Officer (not that I ever lacked orders due to rolling high for them every single time), a inexperienced Panzer IV G, a SdKfz10 with 20mm (represented by my T-70 with mounted 20mm from my Kursk forces) and a roadblock (Stalled ambulance). 2 snipers as Recce and a timed Nebelstrike. Not much, I know, but with 2 nackered wrists I can't do a whole lot of painting.

Had a minor Loss vs Marcs para's as we fumbled through the rules (Marcs first time I think, and I have not gamed BG in 2 years or more, so....). But it was a friendly and fun game, as is always the case with BG.

My 20mm FlaK either never spotted or hit anything. My Panzer IV died to a rogue Typhoon having done nothing substantial. My 2 snipers provided stellar work harassing the paras. Even managed to hit a paratrooper...that saved. Tough nuts. Running across the field with my troops just attracted a lot of fire (as they should, prime targets) and pinned me down in the fields. It ended in a stalemate after his 6 Pounder holed my FlaK and Marc won on BR. 

Had a win against Rogiers US Airborne. I asked to defend the bridge without reading the scenario first. I had assumed to be able to set up just in front of the canal....not 3/4 across the board! Oops. Of course, the 10 foxholles were filled with my HMG, a sniper and a single unit, all concentrated in front of the house with the Ambulance set up as a roadbloack. The rest of my forces centered around the back house and the bridge...near the objectives. Of course all of my MG teams turned out to be there went half my firepower. Rogier got a bit hamstrung by shitty reserve rolls, a Nebelwerfer strike destroyed the jeep that had capyured the final objective....and my Panzer IV rolled in and took it. We gamed on for a bit (plenty of time left) and I was getting hammered by US artillery. Me wasting my Ambushes by not using them did not help much either. 

It was great to be gaming again, even if it killed me. Driving for over an hour just to get there might not mean much to you in the USA, but it does here and in my current condition it is a nightmare. Driving to Crisis next month will be fun. Anyhow, a day well spent with fun games and fun players.

I'll leave you with this pic of my FHQ Beetle hiding behind a house. There should be more gaming next year :)