Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Berlin Strasse WIP Pt. 2

To see how I have got to this point, read part one of this build HERE. After leaving the glue drying on the building, it just remained to prime the walls. This was achieved with a simple spray of white. The white will be a good base for the future painting and also provides a sealed surface rather than the porous MDF.

Saturday, 26 July 2014

Berlin Strasse WIP Pt. 1

Inspired by the unbelievably good job Ninjasaurus Rex did on his birthday present for me, I started work on my own flat block for Stalingrad/Berlin. At various conventions over the past few months, I had bought a few buildings from Commission Figurines, they were reasonably priced and lovely MDF models to boot.

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Fireflies Fighting Forward

A while back, I was in the Wargames Emporium in Sheffield and bought a box of the Plastic Soldier Company's Fireflies in 15mm.I was intending to use them with the Americans that I repainted some time ago, but my brain was misfiring or something as I'd completely forgotten that the Firefly is a British tank, not American! I know the box allows you to build the M4A4 as well, but I'd already got some M4A4 Shermans and wanted the Firefly! Undeterred by the fact that I have no British infantry to support them, I still made the five in the box.

Three of the tanks were painted in the British scheme, which was just a coat of Russian Uniform. This was highlighted with a dry brush of the base colour mixed with white. I added a couple of British 'style' decals, the usual stowage and they were finished.

However, as I was building the tanks I noticed in Panzer Colours that there was a captured Firefly being used by the Germans. This was described as having the normal base colour with dark green stripes applied over the top. With the extra German crosses on the turret it really appealed to me, so I did the last two tanks in this scheme.

I added a spare German commander from another PSC kit, daubed some dark green lines over the top and added a bit of German specific stowage, like the Dunklegelb Jerry cans, and I now have a couple of interesting additions to my German forces.

The addition of British tanks now means I have to start getting some British infantry to go with them; it's an uphill struggle, it really is.

Friday, 18 July 2014

Full Fallschirmjäger Battalion

I finished off the rest of the Fallschirmjäger unit the other day. It's a full Battalion for use in Rapid Fire! Here are the support elements of a 75mm Infantry gun, 2 x 80mm Mortars and 2 x MMGs:

The main body of soldiers is the three companies of ten men commanded by a HQ of four men.

All together they make an impressive sight on the table!

I have a few other spare guns which I may add to this little force and another almost full battalion's worth of men in the lead pile. It just needs the support elements adding, which may be a project for the future, but thanks for looking!

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Birthday Bonanza!

It was my 40th Birthday yesterday, usually I don't do much to celebrate the occasion, but this year, with the move from my thirties to my forties I decided it was time to have a party. This began on Saturday afternoon and headed into the small hours, then turned into a barbecue on Sunday which also ended late and finally culminated in a day off work on Monday for the day proper and a chance to open the presents I'd been given. And here they are:

From games to books to egg cups, I've never had so many presents on a birthday since I was knee high to a grasshopper. On top of this, Ninjasaurus Rex gave me this Commission Figurines 15mm building that he had been working on in plain sight for the past six months.

I've been watching him build it over the past few months, without clicking once that he was building a terrain piece for Stalingrad even though he concentrates his gaming efforts on moderns...

It all centres on this amazing decal on the side wall of a gigantic Soviet style poster.

Here it is in detail:

Even the interior is fully detailed:

And the walls papered in 1940s style wallpaper!

A great haul, the building will take pride of place on the tabletop when we finally fight for the centre of Stalingrad! He has promised he will do a full build report on his blog, I'll link to it when he does.

Saturday, 12 July 2014

Finally, Fallschirmjäger

Since I stripped the old Peter Pig German Paras and bought some new ones to bolster their size, they have been sitting in a box. I have been avoiding painting them as I thought the camo would be a real bastard to paint. I had only got as far as finishing the bases, but the fear gripped me and they went to the bottom of the pile whilst I worked on the 20mm Plastic First World War project. The other day I knew I just had to do something with them. The lead pile was actually starting to thin out a little, so I went back to them.

In actual fact they were surprisingly easy to paint. The Stumpfmuster 43 smocks turned out to be dead simple. The base coat was German Camo Beige (821) with German Dark Green (896) and Flat Brown (984) applied in delicate stripes over the top. canvas equipment was painted in Khaki, trousers and puttees were German WW2 Fieldgrey. Helmets, gasmask cases (not in the canvas covers) were German Grey and the rest of the equipment Black.

However, they still looked a little flat, so I began considering shading. I wasn't satisfied with the results of the tester figures that I previously painted. Turning to Games Workshop's Jervis Johnson's Pubic Hair  ink wash they all got a brown wash. I then very carefully highlighted the camo with Iraqui Sand (819) and lightened all the hands and faces with the base colour mixed with white.

I am actually pleased with how they turned out, the brown wash was subtle enough not to obscure too much detail, like black would and the dry brushing brought out the creases on the camo.

So far, I have only painted two companies and the HQ, so that leaves another company and the support weapons to finish before the full battalion is complete.

It was also nice to see the difference in the Peter Pig sculpts from twenty years ago and the modern versions and how much they have improved, not that they were bad in the first place.

Along with these. I have enough figures to make two full battalions, so that may be a long term goal. But until then, thanks for looking!

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Showing Your Wares

On Sunday, my better half dragged me to IKEA in order to get some more bookshelves to house her academic tomes she needs for her PhD. It was a boiling hot day, but the place was packed with parents and kids. I mean, who takes their kids shopping in the middle of summer? Are there no parks they can go to?

Saturday, 5 July 2014

All the Kaiser's Men

I put the finishing touches to the box of 20mm Caesar German First World War figures I have. These are the left overs from the two sections that I had already completed and are made up of some figures wearing gasmasks. There wasn't enough in the full box of different poses to make a full section of gasmask wearing men, so this was the next best thing.

Also there were a few figures that I couldn't really use elsewhere, including a couple wearing trench armour. This was very rare in reality and cumbersome to wear, so the amount of men in this stuff is a bit unrealistic, but they do quite nicely as sentry figures and Big Men. The same could also be said for the chap wearing a gasmask with about eight hand-grenades hanging off his chest. I do like the guys armed with trench clubs though!

So this is the German force I have so far, it's enough for a decent game, I just need to find the time for one!

I have some Early War Miniatures Germans on order, so when they are finished, I will post pictures.

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Pillboxes on the Western Front

These pillboxes were picked up at the Wargames Emporium in Sheffield at the princely sum of £3 each! They are from Last Man, Last Bullet but appear to have been sold through Anarchy Models and are made in resin. The models are undamaged, so I took my Dremel drill to them and added a few artillery scars. Then I glued them onto plasticard squares, with the corners clipped to give the base a more rounded nature. Then I added polyfiller to emulate the mounds of earth piled up around the structure. This was then sanded and painted with foliage added. The boxes themselves were painted in German Grey, drybrushed with Neutral Grey and then finally Stone Grey, the final stage was  a black inkwash.

Here they are under an intense artillery barrage. I'd hate to be stuck in that.

They are sold as 10mm Type 26 Pillboxes, but I will be using them as both 15mm and 20mm, they will serve as nice single man Observation Posts in 20mm. There are the remains of a German OP near the Ulster Tower on the Somme and it is about the same size as these, the only difference is that the one on the Somme is round. Here they are being assaulted by some 20mm Germans:

Alternatively they'll be good for 15mm games, here they are, being assaulted by some 15mm German Stormtroopers:

Overall, they are a good pair of models and well worth a punt, they took about an hour of building and painting (not including drying times) and are nice additions to my tabletop. I think they are supposed to be Second World War pillboxes, but there is not much difference in concrete between World War One and Two, as evidenced in the classic bedtime reading Pillboxes on the Western Front. Purists may disagree; I don't care!