zondag 27 september 2015

Sci-Fi scrap

Progress report on the scrapyard. Been plundering my bits box for these but I'm not going to add loads of stuff, keep em simple and get them done I say. Somewhere this week I will add cabling and finish off the remaining 2. I've added a 28mm figure and a 20mm figure for reference (Kromlech Ork Pilot and Elhiem Contractor/SF sniper)

01 aka Cone - added some parts, has a hole on the other side that is begging for a cable.

02 (Nameless) - didn't seal properly while drying due to 2 huge sinkmarks. Will cover that part with a tarp.

03 aka Big Rig - had to scratch in some details and cover a few holes. Need to fill one more hole (in the back, so you can't see it).

04 aka Pod - Ready for primer.

05 aka Big One and 06 aka Sensor need more work so won't bother you with pics yet

07 and 08 (Sat 1 and 2) - Both ready for primer, I can build a flat parachute at a later date.

I'm now going to enjoy a long and stressfree sunday, I'll get back to these on monday :)

zaterdag 26 september 2015

Back to my roots

Before the birth of my daughters 2 years ago I had been busy for a while making individual pieces of scrap for a large scrapyard. In come the little ones and the hobby flalls flat. FFW 2+ years and I'm keen to get started again and what better way to pick up an old friend. Kickstarted by Dr. De'ath and his lovely 15mm scrapyard, 2 weeks ago I went out on a local kit trading FB page and swapped a old Jerry bomber for the Mir space station, unbuilt. FFW again to tonights hobby night and I manage to clean up and base all of the parts I wanted, so I'm right about here now:

Now to raid the bitz box for small parts, add cables and wiring, maybe a tarp or two, and then get cracking on painting. The 2 capsules in front will also double as objectives for capture the fallen sattelite games (I'll make a addon base with a fallen parachute) next to being pieces of scrap. As it stands now it is completely scaleless (as I prefer it that way) so it can work from 15mm to 28mm. Hope to make some more progress on these next week.

Stay tuned!

zaterdag 19 september 2015

Doomwheel Part 5

Another step in the right direction with the Doomwheels. Magnetised all 4 of them and did the same for the first 2 weapon sets. I hope to have more sets done soon.

Do you like them?

A nice day out.

Well, all is calm again in house Gunbird. Kim apolagised, we will clean up the attic but will set aside stuff to be sold in my own pace. The new hobbyroom will be completely mine, she will buy a laptop and stay out of my way. And there was lots of cuddling.

So, with that in mind, I was all set to go on a nice day out to the Ducosim show. And promptly forgot to activate my alarm clock! Great start. After a uneventful train ride and a nice morning walk (including a 5 minute heavy rainstorm :( ) I arrived at De Flint in Amersfoort where Ducosim is held. I thought the 7 euro entree fee is a bit high for such a small show, but then again maybe the 10 euro fee I pay for Crisis could be considered cheap.

With a detour via a specialist games store selling card game addons, that had tons of different card sleeves, I found the perfect ones for my Pulp Alley deck, and with enough to spare for future expansions. 3,30 euro feels like a bargain.

Then straight to the Inquisimunda table. Evin, Mo! and Smeets were already there, still working on the paperwork for Mo!'s warband. I took some shots of the table.
3 games were played on this table, each follow up game a lot quicker then the one before as everyone was trying to learn the rules. People went down and stayed down which was a bit odd, as it was very hard to rally people back up. I still feel this type of game is easier and quicker to play with Pulp Alley as the games engine.

Btw, almost everything you see is lasercut by Evin. He cuts in foam and wood, and made things like custom made counters and the simple and elegant stands for the walkways.

When I had a walk around I couls see 2 massive FoW tables, next to us were 2 By Fire and the Sword tables with Dick and Rutger demoing, and there were even a few LotR tables, as well as X-wing. Jan Willem van der Pijl brought his 1 page rules Pirate game which I really shoould try out sometime.

Shops seemed to focus on boardgames and X-wingalmost exclusively, not too many miniatures, only Malifaux and Flames of War were in any volume. 1 trader did have Pulp! Figures and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang and even Ronin, but with no money to spend I let those pass.

I did get stuff though:
Previously arranged on a forum, I had planned to meet up with a fellow gamer to take some stuff off hid hands. It turned out toe be the same chap I traded with last Crisis! It was nice to meet again.
A M16 halftrack (I just need the turret to convert a PSC one), 3 miniatures (a goblin just for his funny face, a post apocalyptic Samurai for Inquisitor and a Squig for use in Frostgrave/Mordheim) plus 3 Old Crow Geckos new in their pack, for scatter scenery for Inquisitor, though tbh, seeing how big military jeeps are getting, they could serve in 20mm as well. I'll give them really generic paint jobs.

Had a really nice day, though I think it did not show as I'm still sick and a bit short of breath. Will go to bed early today and have a nice relaxing sunday :)

donderdag 17 september 2015

Welcome to the wonderful (and expensive) world of 28mm AWI CANCELLED

Well, that is it then.

After a year of selling off stuff, slowly building back to be able to paint and game again, and making plans, Kim (after much pushing of her best mate) put her foot down last night and proclaimed the attic must be cleared of all excess stuff pronto and I'm not allowed to buy anything anymore for quite some time. Else there would be consequences for our relationship. Her friend had gotten pretty mad at me for...well, various reasons, and pushed her into acting, for our mutual benefit.

Where I come from this is called emotional blackmail, she said it was in my best interest.

Always trying to avoid problems, I cancelled all trades planned for this and other projects, but spent a lot of time and today thinking about this. Is this really fair? Ok, I have a lot of stuff, and stuff needs to be sold, but I have sold over 2K of stuff in the last year. Does this show? No, of course not, it is all about miniatures...small things. I have a steady rythem of selling and a good thought process if I want to buy things (only current projects, only if I start them within a year, only from funds from sold items). I've made vast improvements to my hobby room. I'm actually looking forward to painting and playing again. It was Kim who told me I should get out more, which is what shows and the AWI project are all about. Or maybe I'm just being dense here, but being told to sell 3/4 of my stuff feels to me like a random figure of someone who has no grasp to what this hobby really is.

Collecting, painting and gaming.

As far as anyone I know or talk to, they all have quite a bit of space, shelving or attic devoted to the storage of their hobby. And it is not like having to sell 3/4's of it will me stop me wanting to buy new things, or go to cons, or learn new games and have evenings of fun with likeminded individuals. At least I hope not.

For some reason or other telling her this hobby is a big part of me and is the one last thing (next to my girls) that keeps me sane and gives me a good reason to get out of bed each day seems to be falling on deaf ears. It actually does with 9/10 of our combined family. Back in college many people were amazed I had the patience to paint such small things, now all I hear are things like "waste of money", "childish" and more comments like that. Not being helped by the fact the room is messy, and the attic does have a lot of stuff in it, and all my painted stuff that people used to wow about is stored in drawers cause I want to keep them safe. So you dont see what is going on in this room.

But threatening to do something about our relationship while we have 2 kids to raise made me snap somewhere in the middle of the night. To have the balls to say something tells me how detatched she is from our mutual reality. Or as Piers said, i should help her pack her things so she can leave. Nobody messes with my hobby. I never tolerated it from previous girlfriends, why would I tolerate it now? Well, because we have kids, and I go out of my way to avoid problems really, I've been bending over backwards for a solid year not to get on her bad side.

Having said that, I say, fuck it. Sales are good at the moment and I will list much more in the coming month. I'll grab a nice share of that for Crisis and have fun one last time this year, and buy what is on the list and maybe a few thinsg that fancy me, and put the rest back into my account for another day. I'll keep clearing stuff at my speed. I work all do, come home to cook and do chores, and have a few hours a night to myself. if I can't even have that, then what's the point?

So, no big group project for me. I can live with that.
No more purchases for some time. Fine, so be it.
No more hobby? Over my dead body.

maandag 14 september 2015

Welcome to the wonderful (and expensive) world of 28mm AWI

Now that I have gone and joined the Dutch 2016 AWI project, and selected Colonial Militia, I'm for a world of hurt. Not only do I have to brush up my AWI knowledge (currently just hovering over 0), but I also need to find, base and paint enough miltia to fit a scenario of my choosing. And learn how to play the game. And not break the bank!

Yeah, no pressure!

Fortunately, because I can focus on Militia, I've now been told I can mix and match uniformed and ununiformed in the same unit. And because I will have no fixed paint scheme, it may not be as fast but there should be enough variation for me to keep going for a while (my aim will be a base a week, anything else is a bonus. If that base will be 4 figures (as Piers does) or 6 figures ( as the locals do) is yet to be decided). Fortunately, I have a lot of time till the game is started in August or September. I've already scouted a fine chap in Portugal who has 60 Militia and Continentals lying spare, so that would be a great start.

Planning this lead me to ponder what to do for Crisis this year. Sgts Mess won't be there this year so no impulse binging on little 20mm WW2 parts. Sofar I've got 50 pounds in my Paypal for pre orders and 110 euros spending cash (which inlcudes the 10 euro entry fee). I thought I would need to double that for all of my wants. So, I did the smart thing and made a list. And some terms to focus on.

Graveyard which technically falls under Mordheim/Frostgate, and 20mm Sci-Fi. So, 2-3 terms.

Just shopwise, that narrows it down to Brother Vinni, Crooked Dice, Fenris Games, Ainsty Castings and Magisters Militium. When I added up the list I was pleasantly surprised. 75 Pounds for mostly graveyard stuff, plus some merchants for Mordheim/Frostgate and some Robots. Even less if I'm honest cause I already have quite a few Brother Vinni stuff lying unpainted, so I'm looking at about 60 Pounds. Add to that some paint, some PSC 20mm armour boxes, a bag of bases and I'm up to 100 pounds.

The last time I pre ordered from Foundry, there was only a 1 figure bonus, so the only saving you really have is on shipping. Having said that, there are some AWI packs I'm interested in. As always, do I buy them now or do I wait when the lot is painted. Decisions, decisions. Not helped by the fact the Dutch AWI group is planning a group buy from Perry.

Thing is, I'm going over each and every possible purchase with a fine tooth comb. Will I build it within a year? Can it wait another year? What are the chances of this item showing up second hand coming year? Where will I find the money? How can I save money?

Well, the last things should not be a problem. I have a big box of Epic stuff that I will be selling soon, and also a lot of other GW boxes that I really have no need for (What do I need a 40K Predator tank for if all I do is skimrish? What do I look like, a Bolt Action player?). And I'm saving money by my decision not to buy premade 3rd World slums (at 4-5 Pounds a hut) I've been holding off for over a year now but by just buying a 10 sheet pack of fine wave cardboard for 2,50 euro and making my own. I want a dozens of buildings so I just went and saved myself more then a 100 Pounds. The items I did pick will be for this year, barring the PSC stuff that I buy for my German army, that is for next year. And you never know what the Bring and Buy will bring. Always a dangerous one, that Bring and Buy.

At least one thing will be free, Jasper from the WSS magazine has some Steel Master magazines for free that I will gladly take off his hands. I love reading those, with my high school French :) Pretty pictures too.

So, did I mention painting? A lot of painting? Thank the Lord for Christy.

zondag 13 september 2015

Take the blue pill, take the red pill

Well, that was an eventful week.

Deleted long bit of text so not to bore you, but the end result is that I'm sick as a dog, but did get my contract renewed for another 8 months and got a payraise!

Leasson learned? I think I took the wrong pill :) I seriously need to start to conserve energy during the week so going to bed earlier is a very smart thing to do.

But how was the week hobby wise?

  • Well, a package was delivered at work with Liberations figs I bought 3 months ago. Long declared missing, I had given up on them. Very nice :) Pity 3 others are still missing though :(
  • I've decided to join a nationwide 28mm AWI project on FB . The plan is to have several big battles next year August/September right here in Holland. My focus will be on militia and I'm looking forward to the challenge (well, I was on a happy high this week, so...) and I'm already looking around for second hand stuff.
  • Was I in for a treat on the LAF this week. Remember all of the individually based pieces of trash and scrap I have? Well, 1 poster (Dr. De'ath) over at the LAF upped me by a mile and madea fine scrapyard. He does a topic on his 15mm sci-fi city of Sandport, which you can find here > Sandport. A whopping 27 pages now in which he details his buildings. He's the reason I picked up my bluefoam buildings again and started making my own doors.

  • Speaking of my own doors, the guy I sent it too sent me a pic of the progress he made on casting them. I've asked for 4 of each and I've given him the production rights. I hope other people will use it for their own projects, albeit 20mm sci-gamers are rare as hens teeth (I know of only 1 in the Netherlands besides me).

  •  After seeing Dr. De'aths version of the scrapyard I decided I needed more sci-fi looking scrap for it. A short lived post on the Oude Dozen kit trading FB group (the seller didn't give any prices which means delete in 1-2-3....) showed a stack of kits in which I could see a Airfix Walrus flying boat (that I want for VBCW) and a 1/144 Mir space station kit. As it turned out the seller was in Tilburg and had no trouble with making a pick up on friday before I went to Modhail, and traded it with me for a 1/48 German bomber I had lying around. The scrap will work fine for 28mm as well (as well as 15mm if I still did that) and the 2 small capsules will make nice sattelite objectives. And scrap, of course.
  • My first meetup for ages with Modhail was only for a few hours, in which we talked a bit but mostly went our individual ways modelling and asking/looking for advice. I managed to magnetise all 4 Doomwheels and the first 2 sets of weapons (Missile and Autocannon) so now only 8 sets more to go. More about these soon, and I'm looking forward to the next meet up 2 weeks from now.
  • My desk still isn't clean, but what is on my desk is all sorted so just a matter of brushing into the correct boxes. There is a half a metre pile of stuff next to my desk that needs to be sold, plus more Epic stuff as I want my Crisis budget to be as big as possible (anything not spent will go straight into my bankaccount and no, this does not equal a free pass at binge buying....only for running projects! And 4 out of the 8 running projects don't need anything at all :) I hope to have the desk finished asap.
  • Ducosim is coming up next weekend, and with that the gathering of the Dutch Inquisimunda team and their demogames (3 planned for the day). I will be there with my conversions and to look at other peoples games and to trade some stuff with a few other gamers. If there is a stand with magic deck protectors I will pick up 2 coloured sets of those for my Pulp Alley cards to keep them safe.
  • Malebolgia (a huge Pulp Alley fan from the North of Holland) has offered his help with making counters for my Pulp Alley collection, Indiana Jones style, so I can print those off and laminate them. Very happy about this. Must send him some stuff for his services.
Thats it for now. Splitting headache, back to bed......

vrijdag 4 september 2015

Knock, knock!

Final day of my holiday, loads of chores have been done in and around the house so I've now started on my desk and sorting stuff to be sold so I have money for the Crisis show. But that is not where todays post is about :)

Knock, knock?

As I was working on my Deltas I found that I have only 1 guy with a shot gun and too many 203's, so lacking a bit in breachers. My first response was to post on the Guild asking for info on 20mm scale shotguns suitable for the task so I could add 1 or 2 on a sling. Well, there are none. Then in comes Leigh noting that during operation Gothic Serpent they used Ceiner under barrel shotguns! Top tip!

Some Googling produced the following blog post from a airsofter: Ciener Ultimate Under/Over Shotgun System

The Ciener Ultimate Under / Over Shotgun System

A recent discussion regarding the Masterkey shotgun system on one of the airsoft forums has prompted me to write this article on one of its competitors.  Back in the 90’s Ciener offered a method of mounting an M870 shotgun to Colt Commando carbines. The applications for this sort of combination within special operation forces are obvious, having a shotgun for entry purposes without having to sacrifice ranged firepower in the small teams that they usually operate being an attractive proposition. The Knights Armament Masterkey system also allowed an M870 shotgun to be mounted to AR15 variants using a modified version of their M203 Grenade Launcher mount, ultimately making the shotgun quicker to remove.
Click images to view full size.
The Ciener Shotgun System:

The Knights Armament Masterkey:
The Knights system proved to be more successful, though the widespread use of under barrel shotguns has not occurred.  However, what makes the Ciener system interesting to anyone that has more than a passing interest in 90’s US Forces was its use in Somalia during 1993. The photographs below show a Delta Force operator during Operation Gothic Serpent, clearly showing an M653 Carbine with Ciener M870 mounted under the barrel.
 The same weapon can be seen carried by one of the guys on this MH-6 little bird.
The weapons and equipment used by the various forces that made up task force ranger is varied and interesting. The movie Black Hawk down somewhat simplified a lot of this, which is a shame for a gear nut like myself, but is inevitable in the creation of such a movie.

This would be a very simple conversion to do at home for paintball or airsoft games, as the attachment is at the bayonet lug and front receiver pin, rather than using a barrel mount like the masterkey system.  A home made solution knocked up from some scrap aluminium would be perfectly acceptable as there is little load in this sort of application.
 Very useful post for me. I can and will convert 2 surplus M203 gunners into Ceiner Ultimates to further expand my Delta options. Some sanding,2 pieces of brass wire and a teeny bit of sculpting should do the trick. Excellent, next!