dinsdag 29 augustus 2017

A spot of editing - African UN compound doors

Been practicing my editing skills in a free version of Photoshop. I have plenty of nice ideas from pictures online, but they are always tiled or with tons of crap in the foreground. But with a little bit of time.....

We go from this.

To this. 

Just laserprint, stick to a plasticcard door, weather it ever so slightly and varnish it. Bob's your uncle.

maandag 28 augustus 2017

Weathering a la Piers (Tutorial of sorts)

Since the Photobucket debacle I'm just compiling tutorials that I find handy for my needs and reposting them here, and naming who made it. So expect more in the future. This is something Piers posted recently.

Decals on and sealed with varnish ready for weathering...

Chipping added with a piece of torn sponge, always blot it first after picking up the paint...

 Filter applied, let the filter flood off the brush rather than paint it on...

 Neat oil paint applied and then thinned on the model with thinners to darken lower areas of model and to fade other surfaces...

 Pin wash applied and blended on model with thinners...

Streaking fluids applied, in bold lines and then faded with thinners, using downwards brushstrokes to get the effect you desire...

 Finally a light dusting of pigments...

 And to finish off... a crewman added...

And that is it.

Cromwell Camouflage Tutorial, by Cliff Parker

Decided to save this tutorial I found on Facebook to my Blog for later reference. Full credit goes out to Cliff Parker for making it.

vrijdag 25 augustus 2017

Glorious German Panzer! (No, it's not)

Almost done with the L3/33 now. Still have not found the baggy with the buckets, but did find some AB figures in my stash and this assault gun commander was perfect for the tankette. So I cut him in half. I now have a figure that is worth more then the tank it is in. Go figure.

I just finished basing and sanding my entire Iraqi YW-531 collection in the back. As soon as I can trade or buy guns for them and filled the remaining holes, they can go into the painting drawer.

Also, adding more useless beutecrap to my collection, these have just arrived.
The creme de la creme, ready to harass US Paratroops in Normandy (and get shot to pieces in the process). I'm making 4 runners (2 grey, 2 yellow) and the 5th one will be a burnt wreck.

And then there are these guys, courtesy of cheap Chinese imports, Easter Island heads

These are a tough rubber/resin kind of product, They come 4 in a row, but I cut them all apart and rebased them. Some have mould lines, and I scraped a few off, but will most likely not bother with the rest. They are for Frostgrave:Ghost Archipellago or any other Pulp jungle setting I'd want to use. Ignore the Mistery Machine though, that's for Gaslands, needs new hubs, dirt, armour on the glass and some kind of weapon.... A few bigger heads (10cm plus tall) should arrive tomorrow.

woensdag 23 augustus 2017


In my current drive to unpack and start building stuff that arrives in the mail, I opened a box of H0 stuff I received in trade (one of the lat few items to be sent) and in it are some buildings, some cars, a diesel fueltank and missing items......ffs. Chap has promised free shipping and some free bits to make up for his error, when I buy some stuff from him....so that just went into long term planning.

Anyway, stripped the paper from the building in the back, washed off the dirt with a good scrub, dried it and repaired what was broken, and put it on a 1.5mm form fitting base. I will do the same with the other one tomorrow and get them ready for paint. They are both railway buildings, but the one in the back will work for a German farm storage shed as well so I can get plenty of use out of it.

 I grabbed a Zil 157 truck from my Big Box of Zils TM (I think I have another 15 left) and bolted the diesel tank on the back and gave it a rough scrub and some extra parts. This will be a used and abused water tanker for Afrika, the Middle East, and TW:2K. It's a bit of a fantasy model but hey. Will rough it up with dents etc when everything has set. The landy in the back will be civil as well.

Some H0 hoppers. I dunno, build them as 28mm Necromunda scenery, get some bits to raise them and use them for 20mm, or turn them around and use them for 6-10-15mm scifi? They sure look.....interesting.

maandag 21 augustus 2017

D-Day + 7

Well chaps, I'm dead tired, everything hurts including a massive headache, but I've done it.
 My door has now become the idea board (and my storage location for all of my surplus magnets. Need to trim that down a bit :D )

 The first 3 Alex cabinets are unchanged, as well as the First to Fight, PSC and S-Models stock. The recycling center in front will be moved underneath the gaming table if there is a game on.

 I have been most fortunate to find my 5th Alex on Marktplaats in the midst of clearing out my room, so I picked it up on saturday, removed the wheels, and put it in the right place immediately. Then placed the Moppe I need for now on top of it. As you can see, the Moppe cabinets have changed over the years, in width, height and depth.

 Sorted out 3 plansk on this Billy, the rest is clutter that needs to be sorted. I found another whiteboard at the second hand shop for 2 euros and removed the old metal one I used for my Blog listings as that was a bit sharp around the edges. Not sure what to do with it right now, don't need that right now. Left board has my I dunno what to do tonight Dice list. 10 options, roll a dice, and work or finish that item. Cross out when done, and when a few are done just print off another list.

 The single width Billy with all my tea and paint is a bit more foward due to having the power sockets in the location. Maybe, someday I will remove the backplate and loop the cables downwwards. It is of no concern right now, there are more important things to do.

My purchase board is still there. Well, my planned purchases anyway. With 10 euros a week it will take quite a bit of planning.

 A free, unobstructed view of the area behind our house. The window is now easily opened, I can clean the windowsill and the window with no issues and I want to keep it clear of stuff. The fan is there for extra ventilation when I am working, the mininuke will be joined by my Booblehead as Kim says that they will look good there, and my watersupply that needs to move. Cheap paper towel that I use for painting till the supply will run out and a small lamp purely for letting greenstuff cure faster. I want to keep that windowsill as clean as possible so most likely those ietsm will move as well.

 With all the boards in place I now have room for storage boxes, Moppes with more commonly used items, my radio, and my computer and printer. I need to keep an eye out for slightly longer and deeper boards so I have a bit of overhang for the PC and I can put up a striplight for normal light. Using my ceiling lamps seems to attract every moth for 20 miles and the extendable daylightlamp I want to use just for building and painting. It can nicely tuck away and stay safe that way now. The Moppe that I use as my monitor rest needs to be cleared of junk, it should be for office supplies only.

 Other side of my desk. From now on I will harshly enfore a clean desk policy. If it is time for bed, I need to put everything back in place before I leave. I don't want this to get out of hand again and I have plenty of places to put my WIPs and PIPs.

I've removed the Billy toppers from my cabinets and put them up for sale. I will do the same with the Hemnes cabinets in front, they are just full of junk right now. The Moppes in the back will go into storage in the attic for later when my cabinets have been cleared and sorted.

And that's it. Kim is superproud right now. I'm so tired I have trouble to let it all sink in. Will improve later this week I reckon, just need a bit of time, then get more stuff listed, and clear out all of the unwanted stuff that does not need to be here right now into the attic.

I need to sell a couple of hundred worth of stuff to have some more breathing room financially, and pay off my birthday gift. Working with just 10 euros a week is working really well atm, I'm saying a lot of Nope atm :D

Right, time to turn in early, hope you like what I did and now it is back to getting stuff made and painted.....it has been too long :)

zondag 13 augustus 2017

I have a cunning plan!

After a day spent with the kids, eating strawberries, baking cookies, watching them go bezerk on the trampoline and watching them devour a plate of spaghetti and 2 legs of Dr Pepper chicken (remember, these are tiny 4 year olds!) I sat down behind my PC, and had some proper thoughts for a change.

I'm planning to pick up a full length 40cm wide Ikea Billy cabinet on wednesday, to replace the half sized one. For some reason, I grabbed the tape measure and measured the distance from the window to the big Billy cabinet. It's over 120cm's. My PC table is 120cm's. Hmmm...

You see, I'm happy with my chosen set up, but there are 2 problems with it.
  • The desk and monitor is facing the window. As one of my former jobs was ARBO I really should have known better then to place a black rimmed light device in front of a big light device (aka the sun (light)) as during the day (and in the summer in the evenings as well) I'm squinting most of the time to properly see the screen. As I don't have the best pair of Mk. 1 Eyeballs to begin with, that sucks. Plus if I do want to look outside I either have to get up or bend sideways. The first is something my knee doesn't always agree with, the second puts strain on my damaged back. 
  • The 2nd Hobby desk.....great idea in theory, in practice it is a clutter focal point. I'm doing all of my hobbywork behind the PC 99 out of 100 times.
The third problem is the fact that the battletable seriously overhangs the hobby tables. Something I planned in and don't mind, but still, it's not always so convenient.

Right Baldrick, what's this cunning plan then? Glad you asked.

First up, don't spend the 10 euros to get the second hand full length Billy cabinet. 10 euros saved.
Rotate the PC table 90 degrees to the right and set up as I have now. Try to asap add shelving above the PC table, I should be able to add 3-4 levels. But I will need some damn good bolts to hold it all so I think I'm better of hanging 3 rails on the wall instead of 2 to spread the potential weight. So that's 10 euros spent. I have some spare planks and some junkers in the attic, and for now they will have to do as there is no money to get new ones cut to size.
Then, clear off the Hobby table and remove the legs, take it down and wait for Sjors to pick it up. As it is a high end office table with a swivel to move it up and down and everything, we agreed on 100 euros for the table. Plus 100 euros.
Then, move my single Ikea Alex drawers 90 degrees and stack the Moppes on top of that. The overhang on the side is minimal and the cabinet is more then able to hold the weight. When the time comes, and I have spare cash (ha!) invest in 1 or 2 more 2nd hand Alex cabinets to get the same set up as the left side of the room. The Moppe can then move inside a Billy cabinet.
I need to find a new space for the radio but I doubt that will be a problem.

The only hiccup I forsee is the desk possibly not fitting well enough between the windown and the first Billy, but atm all my measurements seem to be correct (famous last words, I've been there before).

So, what benefits will this bring? Not more room perse. It adds money to the coffers, and the room goes from being a C shape of desks and storage to a double I. The space in front of the window can be fully cleared of stuff, the windowsill is finally in reach so I can dust it again, the window can be opened without issues. Having less open horizontal space means less space to clutter thus easier and faster to clean when I have to. Less strain on my eyes, easier for me to just turn my head to the left to catch the damned cat shitting in my backyard, or the occasional Apache or Hercules making their approach to the Eindhoven Airbase.

I've discussed this with friends and Kim and checked if I'm not demented or anything, but we all see the benefits.

It now all hinges on one thing....does the table fit or not!

Fingers crossed....more tomorrow.

zaterdag 12 augustus 2017


I took a trip to Sjors tonight to tell and explain him about Battlegroup and his choices for Overlord British, and pick up my final Billy cabinet from a local. Sadly the adress I got was incorrect so I went to the wrong, closed door. I'm pissed off due to wasted time, seller is pissed off as I did not show up. Oh well, I will find another one.

SJors was kind enough to give me the leftovers of a SdKfz 7/2 of which he used the trackwork, but is otherwise complete. I'll just salvage it for parts, starting with this:

I've added the frame that goes on top of the ammunition trailer to the top of the SandS Hi-Ace van, and put a rack from the ICM Zil-157 in front of it. I will go though my bits box to find suitable stuff to put on it. I'd really like 1-2 Britannia Afghan goats to put on top as well so I've asked around for them online. Not sure if I can even afford a trade atm for them. Must sell loads next week to even break even for this month. I'll do my bestest.

vrijdag 11 augustus 2017

Eins, Zwei, Polizei!

A bit of progress tonight on the Police armour.

 L3/33 got iron pin MG's with a bit of plasticcard to complete the look. The original barrels are very flimsy and will not stand up to wargaming use. Also drilled out the left headlight and busted it.  The same goes with both fender that have been bent out of shape.

 I'm copying a picture of one in the Balkans, that has stowage on the back as well as a bucket....I have those in my stash somewhere, I need to find it so I can finish this one for paint. Also my bag with commanders...though to be honest, any guy with a helmet will do for this.

The 7Tp and the 35S739(f) both got iron barrels as well, and when I was wrecking the fender on the Somua the PE horn cover popped off and I heard it falling "somewhere".....so I just wrecked the fender some more. both are now ready for grey primer. After this just one Panzer 35 R to build and then this part of the force is done

woensdag 9 augustus 2017

I'm back! Sandblasted and all....

Hi guys, I'm back. Holiday wasn't that great, 1 proper beach day with the kids, only a few more sunny days in which we got sandblasted off  the beach, and I now have traumatised kids due to repeated and painful sand in the eyes.. Ho hum. Rainy days for the rest. Better luck next time I guess?

In the evenings Kim and I had a few talks and I've done a ton of soulsearching, numbercrunching and talking to myself, makes about 20 pages of notes, plans and ideas in the process. I have come to the following conclusions:

  • I've gone a wee bit over the deep end with trading and swapping, as a result of this I've ended up with a rather large stash of kits and many IOU's from people whom I have sent stuff to in trade to be resolved at a later date when and if they would find/get the kit I need.
  1. Starting Monday 7th of August, I'm cutting myself back to 10 euros a week spending money, to be deposited in my spare savings account (current interest rate is 0,05% on it so it's pretty useless). If I want to buy something, it has to come out of that pot of limited gold. 
  2. Everything I sell from now on goes straight into my bank account. No if, buts or whatever you use in this expression, it goes straight to the bank. As soon as I'm out of the red numbers we'll see if we can change that.
  3. During my holiday, every person with a outstanding IOU has been contacted and asked to ship the promised goods, a replacement or cash. Of the 29 persons, all have replied by now and 14 have already sent the goods/money and another 3 wil do so this week. Others have asked for more time, some disagreed they actually had a agreement with me, one even said he assumed I had sent him a 20 euro kit plus shipping as a token of friendship....and promptly sold it and what I had wanted in trade online. Yeah.....Of the stuff that has arrived sofar, about 20% has issiues. Minor things like missing instructions, missing bits of decal or the decals completely missing, and one chap sent me a completely different kit even.....Some of these have now sent me refunds to compensate for that. Some golden nuggets in there as well, like a built O-2 Skymaster that will be very easy to dissasemble and rebuild for my needs. 

  • Speaking of needs......I don't need as much as I have now. Not by a long shot. For that I have the following plans:
  1. Gaslands and Battlegroup now share top priority. 
  2. Gaming is more important then spending money on stuff for possible projects.
  3. Gaming with painted stuff is the norm, not the exception - get them done!
  4. Erik, Ferry and Sjors all share an interest in Battlegroup with me. Sadly for me, they have all chosen completely different periods and armies.....lol. Erik is doing DAK so I have to start 8th Army with what I currently have (mostly vehicles). Sjors wants Normandy Brits and Ferry Kursk Russians, and fortunately I have Germans for both periods, and I can easily expand them with what I have in stock.
  5. I want to keep building 3-4 kits a week to a based and ready for basecoat standard, with final details, if neccesary, to be added when I want to paint a set.
  6. For now, my focus will be on Germany, Taliban, VC and Gaslands, vehicle, scenery and troops wise.
  7. I'm not excluding anything else in 20mm-28mm now, but when I have the choice of working on something 20mm or 28mm, I should go for the 20mm item.
Keeping the Dutch Battlegroup FB page will be important as well. We are currently running a 2 unit Recce build for the month of August, and quite a few have joined up already.

 For now, I've decided to go with a T-40 Light Tank for my (future) Barbarossa Russians and a Staghound for my (future) Normandy and beyond Brits. Might toss in some more units if I feel like it, and ignore the L3/33, it is destined for my German anti-partisan force and not part of the build.

Not sure what next months challenge will be.....maybe Transport Trucks or a Defence or Artilery piece.

Oh, during the holiday I made these:

2x PLO T-34/85 who now have no priority, a 7Tp for the German police and the T-40. The PLO tanks need brass barrels (not in stock right now) and the 7Tp needs a pin for a barrel if they want to survive.

As I have 2 more weeks till my internship starts, I'm using my time by sorting as much stuff in the attic as possible, sorting stuff in Pappis boxes and labelling them and sorting more stuff for sale. To speed up things I have removed my old, big whiteboard.

 So we now have a big gaping wide space.I'm replacing the 40cm wide short Billy with a tall (202cm) 40cm wide Billy. I've been looking for one locally for quite a while now and some pop up, but usually in combo with other assorted Billy's. As I want to get get on with it, I've decided to part with some spare cash and just buy one on friday at Ikea plus another dozen or so Pappis boxes. They are super useful. Next week I will move the PC and table out of the way so I can drill the wall to mount the rails in the open space, and when that is done cut to size some shelving for it. If all goes well I can then use the space to store all my battlemats, 6 more Pappis boxes, my Printer and supplies, and 2 more Moppe storage boxes. After that I only have to add a single shelf above the dooway for a additional 8 Pappis boxes worth of space. With all of that storage space I can focus of keeping better tabs on the for sale stuff and get that out of the house ASAP.

The only thing I need to solve now is how to use the wasted space on the left of my hobby desk as my Moppes don't reach to the big wall....I want to move them against that wall and create something custom for the space between the Moppe and the Cabinet that appears on my left. It's a good 20+ cm's width of space from my table upwards for about 2 metres of usuable storage space. The Ikea 2nd hand stuff I have for that is too wide sadly. But my plastic storage cubes are less then that so they could fit the bill, sadly the ones I've seen sofar are either very shallow and/or expensive per cube.

I'll find some sort of a solution, no worries :)