Monday, 14 January 2019

From AlanD - Rats! (31 points)

This is just a quick little entry for the week as I just got back from overseas on Saturday. However, suitably intimidated by Paul O'G's lovely DAK entries, it's time to dig in. 

This is a platoon of Desert Rats in 15mm for games of Battle Group Tobruk, which have been some of the major hobby highlights of my last 12 months. The figures are chopped up metal minis from Skytrex and Peter Pig, with 'trenches' made from greenstuff and air-drying clay.

So, 31 half figures should give me 31 points, and more importantly, a serious obstacle to Paul's Kradschuetzen.

Nice work, Dux! I love dug-in figures that are 'below' tabletop level. It is much more visually satisfying than placing them behind a big mound or just having a dug-in marker. I'm keen to try Battle Group at some stage, maybe when the Cold War edition arrives. Good luck stopping Paul's DAK-hammer!


From Mike W: 28mm Mountain Men (96 points)

Well, week three of the challenge! It’s been a funny old week, two days away, travelling for work and the two day unwell, with no inclination to lift a paintbrush...

15 x Mountain Men on foot
Luckily, I had got ahead of the game last and done a lot of work on another eBay lot I’d acquired some time ago - this time 15 x 28mm Mountain Men on foot and an additional two mounted.

2 x Mounted Mountain Men 

The figures looked great, full of character, so I wanted to do my best in bringing that out on the finished figures.

My plan is to use these figures to supplement the volunteer forces fighting for Texas against Mexico in the Texas Revolution.

Batch #1,with 2 Scotsmen and Chinese gentleman 

Batch #2 Two of these figures I added rifles to their empty hands, can you tell which ones?

Batch #3, guy at right end has military trousers on with red strip, added by using a red pen

There were a couple of interesting figures in the group, two Scotsmen, one in a kilt and a Chinese man armed with a machete!

I decided I could warrant his presence by him as a cook or labourer who’d got caught up in the Texan excitement.
As most of the figures would be in buckskin, I used a variety of browns to paint these guys, I used contrasting browns to paint the numerous fringes on their jackets and trousers and I gave a couple of them sky blue military trousers, just for effect.
Scotsman #1 

Scotsman #2 

A couple words about the Scotsmen, I painted the kilt as follows, a base of bright blue, then horizontal and vertical green stripes were added. When thoroughly dry I got out a black and a red pen, drawing in a black line, horizontally and vertically through the blue stripe. I repeated the same, using the red pen, to add lines on the green stripe.

I then used the red pen to draw in the dicing on the base of the Tam O’Shanter,I finished off this guy with firey orange hair to affirm his Celtic roots, I used the same dicing method around the top of the kilted chap’s socks.

I’ve discussed how I paint horses before, so won’t bore you again with this. The learning from this week’s batch came when I started to varnish them.

I decided to try something different - mistake!

I usually varnish my figures as follows - apply Army Painter Dark Shade as a painted on varnish, this drys rock hard an is very glossy. I then spray with Army Painter Matt varnish and job done.

This time I decided to use a different Matt varnish that be painted on, when I say different, I mean cheaper....

Mounted Mountain Men 

I varnished one mounted figure as a test, (the one on the dark horse), as the varnish dried it created a white, powdery residue all over the figure. Disaster!

Luckily, I remembered reading somewhere that if this happens, simply add a new coat of varnish from a ‘good’ manufacturer and it will fix the problems, if the first coat is not fully dry. I had a bottle of Army Painter Matt varnish, I applied a new coat very quickly and the was resolved.

The new bottle of varnish is now in the bin.

Calculations: 15 x 28mm Foot @5 points each = 75 points, 2 x 28mm Mounted @10 points each =20 points. TOTAL = 95 Points

Mountain Men- they were hipsters before it was cool. An appropriately awesome and varied bunch. I don't usually varnish my figures (except to cover up glossiness like you have done) because I am terrified of getting a bad side-effect. Your near-miss isn't changing my perception! Have a bonus point for the kilt and chequers.


From ScottM: Goumier & Counterblast (167 points)

My contribution this week will start off with a squad of World War II French Goumier. These 28mm metal figs are from Artizan Designs. The figs seem to be mid-late war with the British helmets and the American officer, but I don't see why they can't be used for early-war battles.

Painting the stripes was very tedious and I can't see myself painting any more of these guys. I'll stick to the regular French infantry!

And now a hard right into the sci-fi world of Counterblast. All of the following 28mm figs are from Bombshell Miniatures and are from their Counterblast pulp sci-fi universe. First up is a trio of Bde Bots and a Bz-R Robot.
Next is a group of four Aggressors from the Mekkus faction.
Also from the Mekkus faction is this trio of Braindrones. Something a number of Counterblast figs have is the plastic 'dome' helmet. I love these and it really makes the figs stand out from other lines' figures.
The next set of figures are from the Edofleini faction. These figs are called Edo Trappers. The pic doesn't really show the contrasting colours very well unfortunately.
Here's all the Counterblast figs together. There will be more in the next few weeks!
That should be 16 Goumier and 17 sci-fi figs x 5 points should be 165 points.

What a cracking and varied entry! I like the stripes on the goumiers, well done- have a couple of bonus points! Your Counterblast figures are, well, a blast! I particularly like the Braindrones. I welcome our new overlords!


From BenF: Там, где мы, там — победа! 6mm 1980s Soviet Naval Infantry (135 points)

So, by the time this post goes up i'll be with my wife in the maternity ward in the process of having a baby! This is our first, and we don't know if it's a boy or a girl so its doubly exciting. I daresay that the frequency of my updates will slow down a tad over the next few weeks as we all get into our routines. That said, i've got some '80s RAF and French ground attack aircraft at 80% complete, along with some Soviet odds and sods. So, if I do manage to grab a half hour of painting here and there I should be able to finish these off.

For this entry, I've completed a Soviet Morskaya Pekhota, or Naval Infantry force. With their sharp black uniforms worn over blue and white striped sailors shirts, and a lineage stretching back to the times of Peter the Great, the Naval Infantry were the original elite of the Soviet forces. Indeed, the VDV airborne adopted the sailor's shirt as a sign of their own elite status. Despite this status, and in common with many marine forces, the Naval Infantry did not enjoy the latest and greatest of technology. The little bit of Cyrillic in the title means 'Where we are, there is victory!',  the motto of the Naval Infantry.

First off are the command stands, one for the Tank battalion and an overall Brigade commander. I wanted these to give the feeling of moving off the sandy beaches of the Baltic or North Sea. Vehicles and figures are all Heroics and Ros.

Next off, the 112th Independent Naval Tank Battalion. Unusually for the Soviets Naval tank battalions appear to have had a mix of equipment. Six bases are the T-55AMVs, the upgraded version of the 1950s era tank with ERA and a tube launched anti-tank guided missile to bring them into the 1980s. The PT-76 tanks on the other hand are relics from the past with a 76mm gun and thin armour. They are amphibious though, which is why they were used. Finally, there are three bases of TO-55 flame tanks. I've attempted to paint an approximation of the Soviet naval flag on the TO-55s and PT-76s, and I'm relatively happy with how they turned out.

Next up is the teeth of the brigade, two naval infantry battalions. For CWC, these have 8 bases of infantry, one base with a 9K115 Metis ATGM, and one base with the 9K34 Strela-3 MANPADS anti aircraft missile. All figures are from Heroics and Ros, and wonderful sculpts they are. Andy kindly put together a mix of figures with helmets and berets which works well for these elite troops. I was a few Strela armed figures short, so I will add in a second SAM base at a later date. I've also included an extra ATGM base, as well as two bases of the earlier 9M14 Malyutka ATGMs so I can field these as an early 80s formation.

Next we have the transport for the infantry, BTR-60BPs from CinC. Lovely little vehicles, and I really like that the turrets are separate which allowed me to make the vehicles less uniform. I've got 12 vehicles, enough for a battalion and a half. I'll be adding another six BTRs at a later date to make up the two battalions worth of transport.

And here's a picture of one complete battalion, the 877th Independent Naval Infantry Battalion. I've got almost enough for the 878th as well.

The Naval Infantry also used the 2S9 'Nona-S' Self propelled gun-mortar in place of the usual 120mm mortars, so here are brace of them from Heroics and Ros. The Nona-S was based on the air-portable BMD chassis, and had originally been designed for the VDV, however the naval lads soon appropriated some and i'll have two of these supporting each infantry battalion. I'll be getting another one from Andy to finish off enough for the entire force.

As with all amphibious forces, engineers play an important role clearing minefields and obstacles and tackling fortifications. These two bases of engineers are armed with the devastating RPO-A Shmel, a shoulder launched thermobaric flamethrower. Their transport is in the form of the PTS-M amphibious trucks. All Heroics and Ros.

Next, some serious fire support. These are two GHQ BM-21 Grad self propelled rocket launchers, the descendants of the WWII era Katyushas.

As the Naval Infantry was to operate in concert with the Soviet navy, I've provided some rotary aircraft which could operate from destroyers, as well as some fast air from one of the Kiev class carriers. The Helos are the unconventional two rotor Kamov Ka-29TB Helix-B armed assault transports. These are from Heroics and Ros with Hurlbat/Lazerline rotors. I managed to spill CA glue on one of the rotor discs, and will need to order a replacement. For one, I scratch built a 23mm gunpod on the left side. The fast air is the Yakolev Yak-38M, a VTOL aircraft known as the Soviet Harrier. This is a Heroics sculpt with bombs added from the bits box. I think i'll add a friend for him at some stage, as I really like the unique blue/green colour scheme.

So that's it for this entry. The total for this lot should be:

98 x 6mm figures = 49 points
39 x 6mm vehicles = 78 points
Total = 127 points.

My next entry will be after baby is due, so not sure when that will be, but it will consist of some 6mm French, USAF, and RAF aircraft.

Look at that Helix! Look at it! I'm drooling over all your 6mm entries, and this is another micro-modern mega-treat. I'm awarding a bonus 8 points for:

  • Handpainted naval flags
  • Antennae
  • Scratchbuilt gun-pod
  • Painted glass effects
  • Getting your twin rotors on and separate!
  • Because I'm a softy and you're having a baby imminently.


From ValeryN- Two Dianas (16 Pts)

So, I'm slowly starting to "roll in" to IX Challenge. For a start, a little work - "Two Diana". This is not a novel by the French writer Alexandre Dumas:

but two self-propelled artillery pieces from the Rommel African Corps.

The "Diana" was a conversion of the Sd Kfz 6 5-ton half-track tractor mounting the captured Soviet 7.62cm gun (FK 36(r)).

605. Panzerjager-Abteilung had its anti-tank ability strengthened just before Rommel’s attack on the Gazala Line in late May by the arrival of the Diana.

Fitted with captured Soviet guns, six of these vehicles arrived in late January 1942, and three more in February.

These models were partially collected from me for several years, so, unfortunately, the gunshields were lost. But even in this form, they will replenish my German army on the "Flames of War" gaming system.

Great work, Valery! Russian guns on German armour in North Africa to back up the Italians- a very cosmopolitan entry. I like the weathering, and wouldn't have noticed the missing gunshields if you hadn't pointed it out. 15mm AFVs are now worth 8 points, so that is a satisfying 16 points!


Monday's Children are out of place

Today's theme is 'out-of-place'. There are several WW2 desert-related entries including Moroccans fighting for France, pilfered Soviet guns fighting for Germany, and Tommies fighting in Tobruk. Continuing our out-of-place theme, we've got Scotsmen in Texas, naval forces on land, and brains in jars!

Happy Monday, all!