24 Jul 2013

Hummers to Humvees - part 1

Lately, my hobby mojo is coming back - now with improved interest in ultra modern battles. I am reading a lot about Force on Force and my biggest wish atm is to play some of those games with slovenian infantry. As with everything slovenian, it is a thing of pride and warm feeling we get when people abroad talk about us! :D

Now,  with as much as I know about Force on Force, it needs a lot of figures, so 15mm would be the way to go...but I'll do it in 28mm. I think this may be my main 2014 project, but then again I just could change my minds 20 times before the January. In FoF quick start scenario, you'd need 14 US and 20 taliban figures. This is still a small count compared to GW games, but bare in mind I've been playing games with less than 10 figures on table lately! Actually, not counting my zombies, I'd struggle to find enough models to proxy this scenario.

So, back to the plan. I've been revealing my great plans to Brummie and told him how I wouldn't go heavier than humvees in 28mm. I mean, sure I wouldn't mind a nice big fat 8x8 APC, but Humvees are all I'd need for now. He has mentioned to me, he could pick me up some Poundland hummers to fill in, as resin vehicles would quickly get quite expensive. This was a great idea...and not just that, it has reminded me that I had bought two of those last year! I've dug them out a couple od days later and started converting them. More on the background brainstorming later on, but I will base my moderns in Imagi-Nation (Island called Evergreen, with capital city called Evergreen fields - the perfect spot for Everything-bad, including zombie invasions).  As it will be imaginary, I will allow myself a slight freedom in vehicles and equipment if desired. To be completely fair, at this time, our troops use american MRAPs instead of our own vehicles in Afghanistan, because of the added protection of those vehicles. So, for games, using any vehicles would work, if need be.

I've killed enough of your time with blabber for now, so on to the hobby and pics:





I have a great article at home that exposes all the modifications that were made by our first troops in Afghanistan (made by special forces) in 2004 (picture above shows one of those vehicles). In almost a decade since then, the uparmoured turrets were added to some of the Humvees (and very late, as few years before that, US troops offered to improve our vehicles, but the goverment didn't approve it because of bureaucracy -.-). I haven't yet decided what I will do with their turrets yet, but I think I'd go with plain gun shield. Other conversions include improved front bumper, a special wire cutter (to help gunner avoid low hanging wires) and a reserve wheel + jerry cans...things like that.

In last couple of years I've seen them all. With HMG without a shield; with only a shield (as above); with all-round protected cupola; same as before, but uparmoured with little windows etc. So really, anything would work.  But as this is hobby, coolness factor wins, so I'd need to see some more photos before I decide! :P

I've started by putting them apart but decided to take few photos to show from where I'm going.As said, I got 2 hummers from poundland. I did some measurements and maths, apparently they are around 1:43 by lenght (didn't bother checking anything else), which has surprised me as they appear somewhat small (compared to other vehicles, not to miniatures). The tyres are somewhat small and I can't resist the urge to try and bulky them out with some greenstuff. I was thinking I'd roll a thin sausage around them and then I don't know...do something to make them a bit bulkier.

The photo above was taken with one roof put back on, but windows were still out. You can see I've filed their wipers...for some reason, they were modeled on the lower part of the windshields. I have no idea if civilian hummers have them on this way, but well, I felt so zealous, they had to be gone.


Later, I've also tried to file the doors to get the angled as they should be, but after one door, I've decided it is not worth the effort. So, effectively, I've done some damage that would only need fixing. I would really prefer to have "proper" shaped doors, but losing couple of hours (my rough estimation :P) to file those down...not worth it. I have no picture at that stage, but I'll let you know where the result is visible.

For future reference and perhaps your project, trunk plate measures 4x2.8 cm. Roof plate measures 4x3.4 cm. I went with 1.5mm plasticard at first, but then decided to use 1mm on the roof, which I believe looks better. I kept thick one for the trunk. In retrospective, working with 1.0mm plasticard is much easier, so now I should ask myself what to do with all the excess 1.5 plates I got. I do think I bought them for terrain basing, anyway.

Back to humvees, here is a shot with both types of roofs. 1mm on left and 1.5 on the right. There are some sides photos down below. You can see the results of filing doors on the blue and planned marks on both of them. I've scored the doors as they need to be filled with putty. I guess liquid putty would come in handy here, but I got none, so I will go with darker GS with maybe a bit of miliput mixed in for hardness. I'd assume it has to be sticky enough not to fall of later on.



Below is a quick shot of progress, trunk plates glued on. I'm using two part epoxy resin from my and your favorite shop. It stinks horribly, but I think it is better than super glue for this kind of work.
 Later I've put on roofs as well and filed them. I was getting ahead of myself and I've filed the corners of trunk as well. That was a mistake, as I've later found out it is easier to glue sides directly on then to cut them to correct size to insert them. I have crooked hands (I'd say they're both left, but I'm left handed so this wouldn't really explain my "situation" :D), so everything is quite wiggly...but I'll trim some, fill some and it should end up decent.


I have trimmed them the same day, but didn't take any further pictures. I must say I quite enjoy working on those. I've painted something I have yet to show, but I've decided to give this post a priority because it shows something different for a change. I really enjoy it and I hope the end result will be decent enough. I do expect it to bog down immensely after I finish with the rough shape, however. I got no idea how to make stowage basket in the end and front bumper in the front. Let alone rotating gun mount....any tips perhaps?

Thanks for looking,
Mathyoo

12 comments:

  1. As a Force on Force Player I can confirm that you usually don't NEED loads of troops about a platoon a side is usually enough. I settled on 20mm (1/72nd Scale) as the variety and quality of both British and Taliban combined with the cost made it the most viable option.

    In retrospect I should have used a French or German or Lithuanian or perhaps, now having met you, Slovenian and Taliban force combination simply to avoid being to emotive.

    With regard to what you are doing with the Humvees. I really like the sloping back to my eyes it makes them look more military in aspect. I will watch progress on this project with much interest.

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    1. Platoon has 40 figures, how this isn't much? :P Does a game bog down when you have 10 teams to control in that way?

      I get you on emotions, I was resisting the temptation to start playing moderns because of that and even now I think I'd feel bad removing "dead" countrymen. But then again, every conflict is a tragedy in itself and thinking about that really doesn't benefit anyone. With any period, but especially moderns things could quickly be misinterpreted. How does gaming modern era wargames differ from playing all the Call of Duties, Battlefields and from watching various action movies? It doesn't. In the end, zombie wargames are much worse by body count! :D

      The turtleback looks more military to me, too. I think that in the end, there will not be much to see, but it is a great fun!

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    2. 30-40 figures a side will cover all you will need. For Afghanistan I usually only need 1 British squad with maybe a light vehicle, Mastiff, Wimik, Jackal etc. against 20-30 Taliban no reason you would need that many Taliban as some of them have been in a state of conflict since 1986 so you could easily count them as battle-hardened. So you can count them as being very effective fighters.

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    3. Cheers! I wasn't sure about different dice at first, but more I read about the game, more I like it. I will set mine roughly among the "late" balkans and operation flashpoint lines - I was thinking north and sounth islanders (both irregular fighters, militias, so taliban equivalent of a sort), NATO or EU troops (I like brits but US are really overused :P) providing security in the area, kinda like nowadays Kosovo but a slightly more hostile. Perhaps russian (or not-russian :P) invasion. So coldwarish. Plus I don't have to play in desert. It was my favorite but I've overdone the theater with my FOW forces, I'm sick of deserts :P.

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  2. Great start on the Hummvee's. Imagi-nation is the way to go. No one can tell you that you're wrong.

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    1. Thanks! Indeed, a man can put anything in there, but I'd probably keep it roughly east vs. west...for a bit of a cold war feel.

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  3. very nice so far, I look forward to how this will turn out.

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    1. Thanks mate, filling it with miliput now. It seems it will need two "coats", so it goes slower than my enthusiasm can bear, but oh well. I should start planning the weapon mount now :D

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  4. Nice start so far mate coming along very nicely. Let me know if you still want me to keep an eye out for stuff.

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    1. Thanks and if its no bother, why not. Need a convoy :P

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  5. A good conversion Mathyoo, I too have one of these models (occasionally Poundland still has them) and I'm following this build with interest.
    The size of your figures' bases has something to do with how small these vehicles look too, try mounting the Hummers on a slab of 5mm plasticard.

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    1. Thanks Joe, it got better by now :P
      Yes, I had the same thoughts. Especially as tyres are too small for it. The awkward thing is, if they would be leveled with miniatures, I think they'd be too big..I'll never be happy :P

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