Saturday 25 December 2010

Merry Xmas

I hope Santa brought everyone some nice toys to play with :)

I got an Airfix Saturn V
Simple build but where do I put it?

Thursday 23 December 2010

One advantage of Gelatinous paint is ...

I may have complained about it's gloopy sticking powers in the past, but a mere five minutes ago I was breathing a rather profound sigh of relief as an old "opened" pot of Games Workshop Codex Grey bounced off the "den" carpet, leaving it ... completely unstained :)

Just as well I was trying to 'eek' the last out of the old rather than to move onto a new (in fact the Vallejo paints are very handy with their drop dispensers for avoiding paint spillages)

Hope everybody else's Xmas preparations are going better than mine :)

Important presents still to buy, no idea what to get, sounds almost like one of my infamous wargaming battle plans ;)  

Wednesday 8 December 2010

USN WWII Battleship Basing and Painting (2)

Note to Self:
A little more detail on the painting, all Wet Brushed on:

Anita Acrylic's to my rescue
Base colour of: one drop of  Black (11002), one drop of Jungle Green (11016), one drop of Midnight Blue (11042)
Tone up of : one drop of Jungle Green (11016), one drop of Midnight Blue (11042), one drop of Ocean Blue (11056)
Highlight of: one drop of Jungle Green (11016), one drop of Midnight Blue (11042), three drops of Ocean Blue (11056)

Sea Crests: drop of Ocean Blue (11056) mixed with a spot of Games Workshop Skull White (use the 'gel' before it completely dries up), then dry brush with the Games Workshop Skull White for wake and peaks of odd waves

Hull and Superstructure
Game Workshop Chaos Black (still fluid at time of writing) mixed with Codex Grey (just because I am trying to use it up before it dries up)
Then a main base layer of Games Workshop Codex Grey (just because I am trying to use it up before it dries up)
Then a highlight layer of Games Workshop Fortress (looking a bit gluey) Grey added to the Codex Grey (just because I am trying to use it up before it dries up)
Finally a highlight of pure Games Workshop Fortress (looking a bit gluey) Grey round the leading edges

A layer of 11044 Coffee colour (Anita's Acrylic)
Then a repeat touch-up of 11044 Coffee colour (Anita's Acrylic) as first application always seems a little weal on metal
Mix in a bit of Games Workshop Desert Yellow (just because I am trying to use it up before it dries up)
Then add a spot of Games Workshop Skull White (again use the gel before it completely dries up) for some highlights

Not much (if any) historical research to the above other than a quick view of US WWII Battleship 1/350 to 1/700 scale models on Google Images. Sounds a lot more fiddly than it actually was as the models are small and the paints are easily mixed when the pots are open and to hand.

I don't think I ever paint different batches of ships from the same fleet the same way ;) 

Monday 6 December 2010

USN WWII Battleship Basing and Painting (1)

Note to self: So I remember how I did it
Here I am starting the basing process:
  • Card
  • Ships out of packet
  • Filed
  • Washed
  • Under-coated black (good old Games Workshop Chaos Black as it covers well)
  • Scalpel/spatula to create wavy patterns
  • Rather old (see later) packet of DIY flexible filler for the sea carving with the scalpel/spatula. 
Spread away with the DIY flexible gap filler and stick the ships (USS Washington and USS South Dakota) unceremoniously right in the middle of it:

Note the broken Buzz Lightyear toy forlornly waits for attention in the background (I've tried several time bit his gripping hands don't take well to the super glue) 

I dries overnight. Urk, sometimes it does not work as intended  :(

With said scalpel I had spread the flexible filler creating a nice wave pattern (or at least uneven texture to the surface) just I had done many times before, however not a good result as it looked like a cracked Arizona desert floor, baked in the sun.

Yes, too many cracks and it's all flaky, peeling off the card. Did I apply too much filler (it did go on thicker than before)or is the DIY filler stuff getting too old (or even was the heating/temperature too hot in the room, as its winter now)? Who knows, give the filler a good squeeze/mix and apply a fresh (thinner) coat.

Better but not perfect. In fact I give it a touch up layers before I undercoat the sea. Again not perfect but it's on with the painting which covers up most of my concerns and seems pulls it together.

Several paint applications later ...

Next stop Iron Bottom sound!

As I was doing this I found a useful reference web-site for my up and coming US Battleship, CV and Cruiser painting spree scheduled for the winter:

WWII US Navy Paint Scheme Website

For 1/3000 I may give most of the details a miss, but I might at most be inventive/follow the colour of the US Navy decks.

The nights are drawing in but there are plenty of ships to do :)

Friday 3 December 2010

The Battle of the Java Sea: The Maelstrom [3]

In summary:
  • Saving Grace: Precious time is bought for the ABDA command structure as the torch is passed on
  • The last will and testament of the destroyer HMS Encounter
The emotional rage of the IJN response to the torpedo attack gave Admiral Doorman a fleeting opportunity (with no interfering shell splashes) to pull the crippled De Ruyter out of the line, to flag a general state of distress and signalling in plain English to HMS Exeter "TAKE COMMAND - IMMEDIATE".

On the far left the plucky HMS Electra attempted a torpedo attack on her light cruiser adversary, but scored no hits and in return took a telling hit to her boilers, which left her dead in the water.

Meanwhile aboard the shattered bridge of HMS Encounter a calm, fatalistic sense of professionalism took hold. The helm was swung dramatically to port by some ninety degrees. The damaged engine room machinery painfully whined at maximum revolutions. A shrill klaxon boomed out the ludicrous peacetime warning of "DANGER COLLISION", surreal by its sheer understatement. The last word from the bridge to engine room was a curt "Chief. We're going to ram the bugger. Give me what you've got left then your boys out".

The deliberate self-destructive nature of the action was clear to all watching. On the bridge of the Haguro consternation rose to fever pitch as for some unknown reason the already slowed cruiser was now no longer answering to her helm.

Deep in the stern of the Haguro lay the wreckage caused by the last shot fired by HMS Encounter. A 4.7" standard Admiralty HE shell had exploded wrecking the steering mechanism of the Haguro, on nothing short of a critical hit.

AND SO TIME STOPS ... Noooooo! It hurt us too, but we had played one hour of the two hour historical "day period" of the battle (in a full evening, taken at a leisurely gentleman's chatting pace). The game had to be halted at that juncture, as we all had homes to go to ...certainly To Be Continued, but rest assured it will be played to a conclusion as all all key measurements were taken and reported here :)

Thursday 2 December 2010

The Battle of the Java Sea: The Maelstrom [2]

In Summary:
  • All eyes on the crazy little destroyer (HMS Encounter)
Never rely on the concept of average dice rolls as when they needed it most the IJN fire was very poor. HMS Encounter got away scot free. With her final approach cleared and to the great consternation of the IJN Admiral, a spread of four fish went in the water, sent at "effective range" and heading straight for the IJNS Haguro. A tense dice roll followed by an ABDA cheer that briefly stopped wargaming on other tables across the other side of the club.

A large column of water soared into the air to the height of some 100' as the Haguro lurched savagely under the force of the impact. The Haguro was reduced to a crawl by massive three box hull damage and a main 8" turret out of commission too to boot. The IJN Admiral was livid at this plucky 'heart of oak' which had caused such an upset. The only thing on his mind was VENGEANCE!

All hell was then let lose on HMS Encounter. Although now stricken, the Haguro still could pack a deadly punch. In an incandescent rage "both" heavy cruisers turned all batteries back onto her and reduced her topside and most of the hull to a burning wreck. The forward gun crew of HMS Encounter were last seen standing fast to their positions and returning a pitiful fire by comparison (but a die nevertheless rolled) hoping to seek out a vulnerable soft spot in the Japanese behemoth's armour.

Nature plays a Joker

Just when mankind thinks itself clever, smashing atoms and sending rockets into space. Writing computer programs and bio-engineering the world. Nature sits back and smiles:

Anyone got a shovel I can borrow?

Painting Horses

It may be Games Workshop but it is still a good link to paint horses

And I always wondered how ;)