Showing posts with label WW2. Show all posts
Showing posts with label WW2. Show all posts

18 September 2017

Battle of the Bulge - Keep Moving


Since the last post, things have kept on moving - not as fast as I would have liked, but at a fair pace.

The HaT / Armourfast M4A3 76mm tanks after having been base-painted, washed/highlighted, and mud-weathered, were given a couple of white stars on the turrets courtesy of the decals spares box - the Armourfast tanks unfortunately come with no decals.


They are also very sparse, no tools or any other kind of stowage, and the hatches are moulded shut, but in spite of looking very bare they are fine for gaming and are now ready for table 




The old Hasegawa M5 High Speed Tractor and 155mm Long Tom that were dug out of the old stash have now been repainted and are also ready for action.

As with the Shermans, after repainting the M5 also received a good dose of mud on the tracks.


Below the finished tractor and Long Tom, the Armourfast Shermans and a GPA Amphibious 1/4 Ton 4x4 Truck that was also on the painting table. 


I stuck a figure in there wearing a thick overcoat - he's from the Revell US Ardennes Infantry set.



While I was at it, I took a shot of that now finished 1/4 ton amphibious "Seep". It's from the Academy "WW II Ground Vehicle Set -6". I trimmed down and added a few figures to fit in there.


So a fair amount of progress, and more to come.

And to finish off, a taster of what's on the table at the moment.


We've got die-cast Altaya / Amercon self-propelled artillery, a Fujimi M30 Cargo Carrier, and trucks of various makes and from various sources - all of which will be repainted and might be finished shortly.


So come back soon, as time permitting there should be another update with work in progress.


24 August 2017

New project - Battle of the Bulge

I had been meaning to start this project for a few years and finally, after much procrastination, I made a start.

We plan to get a campaign going and we have a fair supply of suitable German stuff already built and painted, but the US forces were unfortunately sadly lacking.

But, I do however have a large amount of WW2 US vehicles and tanks that I've accumulated over the years.

The problem is that the stash is made up of lots of unmade kits, various diecasts that need repainting, and a fair amount of old stuff & wrecks that need work to bring them up to standard.

First off some Shermans


The two Shermans on the left were already built and painted, I just want to "muddy" them up a little.

The top left-hand M4A1 76 is quite old, made many years ago and is an Esci M4A1 with a Matchbox (Revell) Sherman turret.

The other Sherman below was built and painted by a friend (Eli from La Rana Bucanera Website) who kindly donated the vehicle (and some others too that I'll show in a future post). I believe it's a Dragon kit

The two partially painted Shermans on the right are Armourfast M4A3 76mm. Very simple snap-together models, but nice and sturdy.

I also dug out these two old veterans from the stash which are in need a bit of care and attention and will both be getting a new paintjob  - a Hasegawa M5 Tractor and 155mm Long Tom.




We plan to game the campaign, using the Warlord Bolt-Action ruleset, and the their Battle of the Bulge Campaign book which I recently bought.




So, work in progress pictures will follow with the next updates shortly.

28 June 2017

8th Army Uniform - 1/72 Scale Painting Guide


There was a time when I thought my Airfix sand-coloured plastic figures really looked the business with the exposed parts of the skin painted with good old Humbrol Matt Flesh - and of course to a 10 year-old kid they did.


And that kid still lives in my head, and even though various decades have passed since then, and even if I spend maybe a little more time painting my figures nowadays, I do still try and keep things as simple as possible,



Drybrush & Wash Technique

The figures below were all painted using a simple technique that brings out the detail well and allows you to finish off a large number of figures in a relatively short time.




I'll cover the preparation, basing and undercoating in a separate post in more detail, but the painting technique itself is straightforward and simple as follows.

  • Paint a large batch of figures in the base uniform colour. 
  • Once dry, give them a very heavy drybrush of a much lighter colour to highlight the raised uniform areas, straps, buckles, rucksacks, etc. 
  • Block paint flesh areas and weapons.
  • Finally finish off the whole batch with a wash to bring out the details. 


Acrylic Paints / Colours / Wash

Acrylic paints are the best for this job and I generally use colours from the Vallejo range.

For the 8th Army figures I've used the following.
  • Vallejo Khaki - base uniform colour
  • Vallejo Iraqui Sand - heavy drybrush.

There are various products on the market sold exclusively as "washes" or "dips", but I've found that - at least for me - the best option is to use a good quality artists' acrylic Raw Umber diluted with water to a consistency of milk. In this example I've used the following
  • Van Gogh Acrylic Raw Umber

You just need to squeeze out a half-thumbnail sized blob into a bottle top or similar recipient, mix in water to get the right consistency, and paint a generous dose onto each figure.

The wash will settle into the folds and crevices of the figures and once it has dried you'll see a very pleasing and subtle highlight and shadow effect.


Further Detailing



The 8th army uniform can range from sun-bleached sandy white to the darker hues of khaki brown and even green. This all depends on the issue of uniform, the amount of time exposed to the sun and elements, etc., so you might want your figures to have more variation.

You can use the same technique but paint in more detail before the final wash, and play around with variations on the straps, pouches, rucksacks, helmets, etc., using lighter browns, sand, other shades of khaki, greys, and so on.

Another option is to also try with different washes using deeper shades and / or consistencies of artists' acrylics.

If you want to certain figures to stand out, such as as officers or special units, or even whole squads, once the wash has dried you can further detail the figures by touching up certain areas, dark-line, highlight, etc., etc





Colour Guide

The illustration below is a guide based on Vallejo colours for painting 20mm British & Commonwealth WW2 8th Army figures.


One final note : Boots

The British wore black boots but if you've ever walked around, even for a very short time, in dry dusty terrain you'll already know that whatever colour your boots might have originally been, they will soon become the exact same colour of that same terrain,

For this reason I prefer to leave the boots in a dusty shade to try and match the flocked base.


There are plenty of options for painting the 8th Army and many of us have various preferences for colours and techniques so please feel free to add any comments.

20 June 2017

Airfix WW1 French Infantry In Khaki


Airfix / HaT Industrie WW1 French Infantry painted in khaki to represent WW2 troops.


The set itself (not these actual figures though) was one of the first sets of 20mm figures I had as a kid at primary school - and that was a long time ago now.

I always thought that the guy with the carrier pigeon looked like he was holding a half-eaten sandwich that he'd just taken out of his hamper.




The figures have a lot of useful poses, it's a pity about the rifles as they are very flimsy and thin without any real detail, but they still have a place for me on the wargame table.

22 March 2017

Bolt Action Wargame in 1/72 Scale

A few evenings back we had a game (and a few beers) at our mate Alex's place.

Carlos put the scenario together and acted as umpire. The rules used were Bolt Action by Warlord Games.

A WW2 skirmish encounter in a small village between British 8th Army squads versus Afrika Korps supported by a squad of Italian infantry.

A nice touch was in the middle of the game when a group of armed, and very angry, male inhabitants of the village entered into play, shooting at both the British and the Germans.

The objective was to capture and bring out alive a double-agent being held in a heavily fortified old colonial fort in the centre of the village.

The game was nicely balanced, we played it out twice - the Germans took the objective in the first game and the British the second time around.

Some pictures below from various turns during both the games

Brits enter the village



The 8th Army figures are mostly Airfix with a few Revell and Esci 8th Army mixed in.



Germans deploy, coming out to meet the desert rats







DAK are mostly Airfix with a few Revell, Esci and Matchbox figures.



Colonial fort in the centre of the village. Italeri North African House. Lovely sturdy and detailed kit, paints up really well.







Pegasus models "German Truck". One of Carlos' models, the passengers are seated Revell artillerymen with headswaps.



A large Italian squad takes up a defensive position on one of the roofs in the village. HäT and Esci/Italeri figures. The mortar team are from various sets with new heads.



In the midst of the battle, armed villagers attack both allied and axis forces.





The guy with the revolver is the Lawrence of Arabia figure from the Esci Muslim Warriors set. The rest of the figures are Airfix Arabs-Bedouins





Meanwhile the battle raged on
















19 June 2016

Airfix 1/32 Scale Spanish Civil War Nationalists


1/32 scale Airfix plastic Japanese infantry.

The conversions by a friend of mine Alberto Beneítez.






Really clever and inspirational conversions Alberto, looking forward to seeing these painted up soon.

Oh, and finally an Airfix British commando who's been transformed into a Spanish Civil War Republican.

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