29 Aug 2013

Hummers to Humvees - part 9

Hello and welcome to ninth and last part of the conversion (yay!). They've came out a bit different than I expected (no FOF recognition on back, no jerry cans, no extra wheels, no gunshields), but I've kinda grew tired of working on them. To make most of the things, I'd need bits that I don't have and for a gun shield...I figured they look better without as it shows more of a gunner.

Nothing much to say, so on to the photos!

All of them together now. You can see the coiled barbed wire on one of them. It was trying to darken it with a black wash but it keeps staying clean. Talking of clean - I've just remember I've forgot to dust the vehicles!
 top view
 First humvee. This one was silver, if you remember them from the first post.
 A gunner detail. He has the helmet cover with multiple stripes, used to tuck vegetation in. Both guners were painted ordinary skin and then washed with green and a bit of brown for camo.
 Second humvee, the "ex-blue" one. There's not much difference between the two, except lenght of the bumper, gunner and color of tyres.
 Two shots of second gunner. He uses one-strap helmet cover...it's no big deal, I prefer the former kind but it takes a lot of little work to get all the straps done :P. He appears to be talking to someone inside.
 If you look close enough, you can notice the pin - essential part of Mathyoo-gun mount-rotation-mechanism or Magmormech (I'll grab my coat...)

Here is a very short imaginative scenario I've came up with for your amusement. Don't mind the lack of terrain and enemies and imagine thick forest or a town..whatever you fancy.

A slovene-british convoy was on the move from point A to B...it was lead by a humvee, followed by Brit "landie" troop carrier and it had another humvee for rear protection...

 "Contact left! Contact left!" the ever elite SAS team jumped out of their carrier, took cover behind the vehicles and blasted away!
 Close up on lead humvee - I think it works quite well!
 And another posed shot, patrolling the roads of Evergreen Fields (but staying dangerously close to the vehicle for some reason!)

And lastly, a post un-related photo.  I have to disappoint as while it appears to feature female, it is not human. Few days back, I was in the kitchen when I've spotted the small roe deer taking a walk on our property (the house lies in flattened karst valley). Roe deers keep making damage to the flowers and garden, so I tried to scare them away, but they've grown used to us, apparently, as they didn't budge. A normal animal would run away, but lately, they just turn the head towards you, screaming at them and they watch you all interested. Those two took it a step further and the younger one even fed while I was waving at them. The short stone "wall" you can see behind them is the property boundary. I was about 20-25 meters away and our ever-watchful guard dog has his hut some 15 meters away from their spot. He is a very kind dog, apparently, as he only starts barking if we start screaming, so they're not afraid of him and they can eat the rose ends as much as they like.

Thanks for looking,


25 Aug 2013

Hummers to Humvees - part 8


before we start I would like to point out that followers list has grown and I would like to thank everyone on that list for the support. I hope you like what I'm posting and well, feel free to post comments, questions etc.

As for Humvees, still not quite done, but we're moving on! I have got a stroke of mojo and I've rushed painting emblems and flags on the vehicles, practically finishing them. What they need is some details, simple weathering, gun mounts and we're done!

I was thinking about getting custom decals for them, but eventually I've decided to do some free hand. Firstly, decals feel...too real. And hey, painting is still a part of the hobby, so I've decided to give it a go myself. While not as nice or universal as decals, you can see what they represent, so I think that is good enough, hehe.

Emblem colours for future reference:

Green Ochre

Mix of Tan earth and Green Grey

German camo medium brown

German grey for lines and swords

I have started by drawing the rough shape on the piece of "painters tape", the yellow "paper" tape.
I taped it on the table and put a scrap plasticard piece underneath to spare the table...I think it is time I'd get myself a cutting mat!

I have taped the template very roughly on the front doors.

You'll have to excuse the photos, they were taken in bad light as this is what it looked like when I was working on them :P. I've used flash for some photos. Anyway, after the template was on, I've stippled the wait paint on it, to get the rough shape.

After that was done, I covered it in lightest of he colours. The normal emblem uses white-blue-red colours of our flag (yes, like Russia), but "combat" colours are all brownish.
Nothing much to say, second colour was painted up to around 2/3 of the emblem.

I don't seem to have taken the photo, but naturally, last third of the emblem was painted with third colour. In the end I've painted black lines between the tri-colors and around the emblem. I've also added 2 crossed swords behind this shield, but those are not seen too easily.

To make them a bit nicer, I've also added small slovene flags on second door (not used at home, but I saw them on ISAF humvees). It is still a wargaming model, so if it looks cool it is good enough. The flag is roughly suggested - 3 colours and then inverted blue and white for the coat of arms.

I was on fire, so I've also added flags to the fronts. You can see  Landie's union jack on the second photo.

I'll try to finish them completely by the next post. I was thinking about making radio aerials for them (I'd really like to put little flags on those), but I think those would be too fiddly for gaming pieces. Perhaps smaller aerials, just for the sake of it?

Thanks for looking,


22 Aug 2013

Hummers to Humvees - part 7


here we are, with part SEVEN of the updates, and still not nearly done! This photos were taken a while ago, but with the speed I'm working on those, they aren't much different by now.

Before we start, I might show off a bit and tell you I've been on a meeting with my mentor for my paper yesterday. We talked a little bit about my paper (entitled "The Development of Tank Doctrines prior to WW II", in case anyone cares). As Interwar events can be linked to nowadays circumstances (people don't really like wars, financial crisis), we talked about that a bit and then moved on to WWII events as I am just reading a book about Partisan Hospital Franja ("Franya"). Now, the reason I'd like to make a post about something that was happening here during WW2 is obvious, I think the subject is quite unknown abroad, because no large front was established here. But on the other hand, warfare here was quite intense and somewhat different from any other. The reasons I don't want to talk about it too much, at least on my blog, is that it quickly boils down to politics. Politicians are still eager to use things that have happened during the war (there was a fight against invaders (so Italy, Germany, Hungary) and in the mean time communist revolution was taking place and with it a civil war). Perhaps an odd post about a certain battle or that funky hospital when my sculpting mojo will be dry again - I do believe I am capable of presenting things objectively - it is what I do after all. Oh and just to make it clear, in case any followers here finds him/herself in the area, please do let me know, I know places :P.

So, now that I've told you stuff completely unrelated to the topic, here is how far I got on the Humvees so far:

Just one more thing before we start. I was painting them with large tubes from poundland and those colours are bad. Really bad. I've stripped the vehicles once, put countless coats on them, the paint got weird white grainy traces, so I varnished them etc etc. A true nightmare. When I've reached a point where I was semi satisfied, I've decided to keep it that way.

For humvees its basic green with brown patches, but I've found out we got two greens. So now I've added light green patches which are not seen on the photos.

Landie is, according to my knowledge, wrong. I am not sure Brits have this exact type of Land rovers in their army. They're either more open or have less windows. Anyways, they can carry a section, so that is good enough. I gave it black camouflage patches and I'm quite happy.  You can probably see that they were drybrushed lightbrown, but that wasn't good enough, so I've redone the patches on Landie and completely repainted the Humvees again. 
 Blue windows are more blue now, and were washed with very, very dilluted black wash. Does anyone have any idea what I should do about them now? I like blue for the contrasts, but it's strikingly fake.
Also, as i'm talking about trouble, front fenders kept falling off, so I've put some milliput around them to make them stay in place.
 Here is a nice photo to let you admire the snorkels. I am really happy with how the ones on humvees came out.
 And one with gunner mounted! His M2 is now painted.
 It turns!
(you can also "admire" the blotchy camo I'm not too happy about, but I've ranted about it in my last post)
 And it doesn't fall down if you put it upside down!

Aaand that is it for now. What needs to be done to completely finish the builds is paint the gunners' faces and helmets, varnish the vehicles as I am afraid to touch them as they are and paint some insignia on the doors.
Oh, also need to add some details, like recognition tarps, barbed wire etc.

Thanks for looking,

19 Aug 2013

Hummers to Humvees - part 6

Hello guys,

I've been painting the humvees for past few days on and off (had to repaint the vehicles themselves a lot, which has pretty much killed my enthusiasm for a while). I've decided to break vehicles and gunners into two separate posts to keep my thoughts and colour choices regarding the uniform separate.

 Before I could completely put gunners together, I had to pain the men themselves, so they wouldn't be obstructed by guns.
 While uniforms could be quite straightforward project, there is a problem. We're just getting new uniforms and I got no idea how the helmet covers and vests will look like. I've decided to just go with what is happening now and paint slocam (yes, that's the name of the new camo :P) for uniform and use old amoeba pattern for helmet cover and vest. Plus, models in one color (or one color scheme) are really boring...painting one camo is just like painting black, cool at first but boring eventually. I know there's much desert fighting going on, but I am really tired of desert from my FOW projects. Plus, I'm anxios to paint some face paints on my troops, so they will fight in woodland areas - from Evergreen Fields to perhaps a neo-soviet armored spearhead through Slovenia to Italian northern plains?

Here is a comparative photos of old and new uniforms. Old desert pattern was essentially same as the woodland one, but with sandy colours.
This is a photo from early testing, so the cut of the uniform itslef is the same. New cut includes angled pockets, big velctro "panels" on sleeves for insignia etc. But this isn't really important in 28mm, so what we care about is the new pattern and colours.

As slocam is very simmilar to multicam (but not the same, mind you!), and by that, to new british pattern, I was looking for articles for those two uniforms. I don't have too many paints available, so I've figured I'd experiment on the gunners a bit.

I've used Vallejo colors and what I've found out...it would be perhaps better to stipple than actually paint patterns, as even most dominant colors are split in small dots here and there:

Uniform was based on mix of german fieldgrey and dead flesh to get this lightly green color. Mine is a tad to grey, I suppose.
I then made number of bigger patches in green ochre. Qute random, and not too big and not too many (that's the idea, not what I did :P)
Next was luftwaffe camo green.
After it I've done some smaller strokes of german camo medium brown. At this point I've figured they're really all too round, so its probably really best to take your time and use small brush...or stipple for fast work I suppose.
Last was elfic flesh, but I think any bone colour wold work.

Here are the colors for our old "amoeba" pattern I've used. I don't claim their right, its just my choice atm, based on available colors.

Base was done in german fieldgray, mixed with some elfic flesh to make it a bit brighter.
Patches were simply german grey (instead of black), german camo medium brown and luftwaffe camo green.

I've washed it all with a bit of green grey, but I think it as too thick. I've tried "gloss+black" paint again, but it didn't really work. As my camo blotches are all too big, it all came out a bit under my expectations, but on the other hand it made me think I should add an all round armored cupolas to gun mounts. This way I'd hide the horrible paintjob and it would look more realistic, I don't think any  humvees are without one by now :D.

Below is the rough result. It looks fine from far but not as nice if you look from closer distance. I really think I shouldn't rush it and should just use a smaller brush. The wash was really useful to tie it all together a bit more, but it was too thick in the end.
You can see I've sculpted some fingers on the left gunner and started detailing straps on his helmet some more. It needs one more perpendicular stripe. You probably can't see it on this photo, but the vest looks much like the jacket, so I think I totally blew it. I think I'll keep it that way and won't be repainting anything. If it will bother me too much, I can always come back and redo the sleeves - it is the only visible part, after all.

Well, sorry to keep it so "photo light", but I'll have more when I'll show you the current WIP of the Humvees themselves - which I think look quite decent at this point :P.

Thanks for looking,

15 Aug 2013

Strange Aeons field report

 when I've sculpted the Hound of Tindalos, I've promised you an AAR of a game with it being used. It has taken me a long, long while, but here it is now. Even better, I have reports of two games for you today!

My SA mojo has died out a little, but it really got fired up after playing this games. When I filled whole table of (almost wholly) painted terrain, I got a warm feeling of pride.  There are still some resin bits and model I still have to paint (bought far back at Salute), but other than that, it's all pretty decent, if I do say so myself.

My brother and I finally get to play a game (I'm waiting for him for more than a month now :P). He has made yet another new Threshold list (we play so rarely, we forget where we quit, so its better to play over again). I took over the lurkers and tried to be as fluffy as possible.

Both games were played on same board. It represent a derelict building (modeled after Whateley's farm), flanked on one side by an old cemetery and on the other by forest. I've scattered some crates in front and added a flatbed - apparently there is some foul activity going on around here!

 Below is a close up on barrel stack. I've made this myself and I became convinced I should be an architect, a pyramid that would put Keops to a shame!

In first game, brave agents of Threshold agency. We got a character with an elephant gun (I really need a decent 1920s guy with a bolt-action rifle, I'm sick of using this fisherman :D), an agent with a shotgun and an agent with a blowpipe and meat cleaver.
 Their mission was to accompany and protect dr. Armitage Ackerville, that is "tracked relentlessly by a semi-spectral hound" (quoted from Morbid Adventuress :P). Doctor Ackerville keeps donating huge amounts of his wealth to Threshold agency, so his survival if very important for the future of the agency.
Dr. can be seen below, with a hound that is after him and two zombies.
 Threshold agents have been accompanying doctor for a while now. Our story takes place near edge of the forest, near one of the lonely farms in New England.  Threshold agents kept eyes peeled, for they knew the hound could jump on them from any where at any time. They were all a bit itchy, as even their specialist training doesn't completely remove the fear people have when faced with unknown.
 As they walked past the ruins of a long lost civilisation, they couldn't lose the feeling of being watched...and watched they were. A cosmic hound, that is only called to our world by its thirst for blood was stalking its target - Dr. Ackerville.

 Things got worse for the agents, as the abandoned farm was apparently a place of morbid experiments - Doctor Herbert West himself was operating in this house. He and his partner were robbing near-by graveyard in their thirst for "specimen" - dead bodies they used as experiments to try and find a formula, with a power to bring dead back to the world of living.

Dr. West was long gone from the area, but there were still a couple of reanimated bodies shambling around the area.
 The agents had the first turn and shot at the Hound straight away. Unfortunately for them, the Hund was covered by woods and thus unharmed. In his turn, the Hound has leaped to an old obelisk, devoted to Snakemen from Valusia. Here, I had an option to jump on Ackerville and (probably) kill him on first turn. To play a bit more fluffy, the Hound has instead used its 2nd action to unleash a bone chilling howl. Howl was heard by Ackerville and two threshold agents. Both agent and doctor have mustered enough courage to stand their ground, but leader of the expedition, character, has ran in fright and left the area!

 Next turn, Threshold team could only nominate one miniature. My brother opted for doctor, who has started fleeing from the cosmic abomination as fast as his two legs could carry him. Hound wanted to follow in pursue, but was hit by an alert member of Threshold expedition and temporarily stunned (die indicated that model is "face down")
 The rest of the game followed the same pattern. Hound came to its senses and started chasing poor doctor. Doctor's maniacal flight has lead him past the cemetery, out of Zombies' reach and eventually off the board edge, which indicated his safe passage and thus Threshold victory. Very lovely game, pretty fluffy, without any unneeded shooting. Threshold suffered one "minor injury" (Character for leaving a board), so one of the remaining 2 agents got an extra skill. As dr. Ackerville successfully escaped, Threshold team now has a chance to become equipped with a special prototype weaponry in their next reequipment.

As said before, second game was played on the same set up - it offers a lot of cover and it makes a lot of sense, so there was no need to swap it around.

This time, "evil" cultist have taken an old hermit hostage. He was rumoured to possess knowledge of ancient things. Now he was hold up in an abandoned farm and "questioned" (by which I mean tortured beyond explanation!
I've made a team of Cult leader, armed with pistol (painted guy). He seem like a great model to do the interrogation, but not giving him a bit better weapon could be considered "a waste". He was accompanied by a cultist with pistol and two henchmen - with shot gun and one with tommy gun. What's even worse - they appear to be part of a local law enforcement!

 Threshold team was same as before, but model used for Dr. Ackerville was now a hermit.
 Threshold team have decided to attack from same flank as last game, while hermit was being interrogated in the middle of an abandoned farm. The goons were protecting the leader from possible law enforcement raids.

In their first turn, Threshold have sniped Shotgun henchman off the window and closed in.  That is unfortunately all there is to the game. Hermit was interrogated, but didn't leak info to Lurkers. I was hoping he would be more chatty next turn, but interrogator was involved in hand-to-hand combat by Threshold team members (they came in one by one, through the window). We've decided that even if interrogator was in base-to-base with the hermit, he couldn't actually do the interrogation as he was busy fighting in hand to hand last turn (but we decided that he can still fire while interrogating). Cult leader has won in CC against all 3 Threshold members, which was due to great luck he had. He didn't manage to inflict any major injuries, so all Threshold members will be fine in next game.
With all 3 agents removed from the table, and a cultist and shotgun henchman dead (tommygun henchman has only fired once in alert and didn't even hit -.-), game was over. What my brother hoped for, was that he will kill the interrogator and extract information for hermit. What I hoped for was to end interrogation quickly, kill the (now useless) hermit and escape with the information.

A bit long post...the AARs didn't really came out as I've imagined, but hopefully they give a decent representation of 2 very differently played games. I am painting my humvees slowly, as I keep having problems, but you can expect an update on them sooner or later!

Thanks for looking,