Tuesday, April 28, 2009

600 Point British 8th Army Infantry

I have finished the first 600 points of my Flames of War British infantry. The point values are approximate as I am using the first edition lists for now. I figure there can't be too much differences so it is fairly safe to use as a starting point for the army.

The company command is 35 points and will include a troop carrier. I am still building and painting the carrier model and it will be part of a future update.

Next up are two infantry platoons with three sections and sticky bombs. These check in at about 180 points each.

Finally we have the HMG platoon. Two sections of two guns each make for loads of fire-power. These guys will also have carrier transport that is under construction. This unit come to about 190 points.

Still to come is the Mortar Platoon with 6 tubes, three OP stands, a command and 7 carriers. After that is the Royal Artillery battery of two sections for a total of 4 guns. All of that will get me to about 1100 points. I still have enough infantry for at least one more infantry platoon and perhaps two. I still have lots to do.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

How to Paint 15mm Soldiers

After several years of not painting anything smaller than 28mm figures my Flames of War project is forcing me to dust off some old painting techniques. These figures are about half the size of what I normally paint and they don't have the same detail. In fact, they are a little like chewed up fishing weights. Ok, they are not that bad...

This is basically a staining paint technique and it works well for speed painting large numbers of small figures. I have used this on 15mm and on my 20mm WW2 figures. It is great for 20mm plastics as these are always chipping and need frequent repaints.

The first step is to clean the figures and remove any flash or mold lines. Be very careful. These guys are small and it can be hard to tell the difference between a detail and flash. Take your time. I like to mount the figures to a Popsicle stick for painting.

After the figures have been cleaned it is time to prime. This technique requires a black undercoat. Unless you are some kind of painting genius do not spray prime these. Spray paint will destroy the detail on these small figures very easily. It is best to do a brush coat of plain black paint.

Once the black base coat has dried thoroughly it is time for a 'dry' brush of white. This is not like dry brushing a tank. For this coat I use a little 'wetter' dry brush. What you want is to bring out the details by creating a high contrast on the model.
After the white has dried it is time to add the basic colors to the model. This bulk color should be applied with thinned down paint. I thin the paint until it is like milk. It is important to get the right consistency. Too thick and you will obscure the contrast layer, too thin and the paint will not color the area well. The idea is to get a transparent paint that will give the correct color but allow the contrast through.

After the base colors are on it is time for some details. For the details like flesh, belts, boots and guns, use paint that is not thinned or thinned much less than the bulk areas.

At this point the paint is done. No really, these guys are done. Yes, I know I have missed a bunch of spots and if you have missed stuff feel free to go back and clean things up as much as you would like. I am lazy so these are done.
Long time readers know that I am a 'dipper.' I use Minwax Polyshades wood stains on most of my projects. For these little guys I am using the Antique Walnut which is a red-brown color. This will give the figures a nice earthy look and help hide some of my sloppy painting. I brush on the stain like a wash, I do not actually dip the figures.

Just base these up and all done!
I have about 2-3 hours total in these figures but that time also includes painting about 60 more, with basing and taking all the pictures for the article. This is a really fast way to get lots done.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Old School Stuff - Col. Shaffer's Last Chancers

Today's selections of old school stuff is my collection of Last Chancers. If I remember correctly there are ten or twelve of these guys but I only managed to find time to paint seven of them. I do have the rest of them out in a box somewhere. These were used in 40K Kill Team games, Necromunda, Daemonhunters and Imperial Guard. Some very cool figures but looking at these pictures again it seems that the chick looks a little like a burn victim, not really the look I was going for.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A New Direction

After several years of waffling, excuses and whining I have decided to jump into Flames of War. You might be wondering why this is such a big deal for me (then again you might not). Well, it is mostly a big deal because for some reason I have made it that way. I have spent a great deal of energy coming up with reasons for NOT playing this game all the while I have spend hours pouring over the FOW web site.

You see, I really like what Battlefront has done with this game. They have a really well designed product with excellent support. Their models and books are top notch. From all I have been able to see the game is very popular and plays well. In addition there are lots of options for models in 15mm...

15mm...this is where the trouble starts. You see, I hate 15mm. When I first started miniature gaming 15mm was a very tempting direction and I even invested in 15mm ACW for Johnny Reb III. There was a time when I was thinking about build a DBM army...the mind boggles. During this time I was also playing several GW games and was getting into Warhammer Ancient Battles, which are all 25/28mm games. To make matter even more complicated I had a large collection of World War II in 20mm for Battleground World War II. I also had a collection of micro armor which was 6mm. Things were getting out of control. I made a decision that I was only going to play games in one 'scale' and that was going to be 28mm.

After much thought I finally realized that 15mm was the only bad thing I could think of about Flames of War and it wasn't important enough to keep me from playing. So, now I am building an 8th Army British Infantry force for North Africa. Several other friends are also either working on armies for this game and period.

In the picture above you can see the start of my collection. Most of the infantry is from Old Glory's Command Decision line. I think that most of the vehicles will end up being Battlefront as they are very nice models. This should be a very fun project to collect and paint and I am planning a series of posts as the project moves ahead. Stay tuned.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Fallschirmjager Splittermuster 41

Just in case you were wondering if I was painting anything or just uploading a bunch of old stuff, I am actually doing both. This batch of 14 Fallschirmjagers is painted in the splittermuster 41 uniform, or at least my version of it. Turns out German camo is a pain. In fact I tried to paint this pattern a few months ago and it turned out so bad I painted over the figures. I will do a tutorial on this pattern in a future post.
This batch takes my FJ collection to about 36 models. That is about half way done.

Old School Stuff - Necromunda Terrain Part 6

Sweet! This is the last of the Necromunda Terrain pictures! What a pain but I hope you enjoy them and are inspired. This was a fun project to build and it is a fun table to play on.

As you look through these pictures keep an eye out for object you recognize. There is stuff from all over in these pieces. Obviously there are Necromunda bulkheads, which I was lucky enough to acquire a large collection of. We used a lot of PVC plastic card that were scraps from a local sign shop. There are also several plastic electrical boxes. These are excellent starting points for all sorts of sci-fi terrain. There are PCV plumbing parts - pipes and fitting of various types. We used car parts and parts from old computers and vacuum cleaners. There are GW bits and parts from HO railroad models. Each piece is based on a heavy masonite base and screwed down or glued. This stuff is extremely tough and has required very little repair in the years it has been in use.

Old School Stuff - Necromunda Terrain Part 5

The yellow building at the end of this set is my favorite of the bunch. That building has tons of detail and character. See if you can spot the BMW power window motor. I am not going to tell you which building it is part of.

Damn! I really want to make some of this for myself. Must...resist...

Old School Stuff - Necromunda Terrain Part 4

A funny thing has happened while going through all these old pictures. I began to learn a little more about my friend Tim. You see, he took most of these pictures. Turns out that sometimes he gets stuck taking the same picture over an over in search of...well I have no idea. This then results in me having a series of shots of the same thing with maybe a different figure or a slightly different angle. I am sure there is a method in there but he never shared with me the one he thought was "correct" so I have posted them all. So please remember I am only obsessively posting pictures not taking them.