15 January 2004

Hasegawa Crusader with Airfix Turret

Hasegawa Crusader with Airfix Turret - Jorit Wintjes (original article formerly on the miniaturezone.co.uk website)

The Crusader was built by mating a Hasegawa hull and an Airfix turret.

While the Airfix hull has some dimensional problems - it's too short - the Hasegawa turret looks like anything but a Crusader one.

I scratchbuilt a new turret roof to get the angles and the hatch correct, and spent some time getting the opening mechanism right - only to hide the latter from view with a poorly painted crew figure. Kinda unsmart... Getting the scratchbuilt sideskirts look right (they should bend slightly outwards) was very difficult.

In the end they still look rather flattish, but you have to be rather close to the model to see that (and if you're that close, your attention will be drawn to a number of other shortcomings :) ).

I also tried to improve the look of the tracks by cutting them into small sections to get some sagging effect, but this didn't work out as intended - actually, around the sprocket, it worked just the other way round!

To get an accurate representation I should also have reworked the engine deck, the side stowage bins and the air filters, but I decided to call it a day and simply load it up with stowage stuff (scratchbuilt or from the spares box).

© Jorit Wintjes - Würzburg, Germany (2004) (original article formerly on the miniaturezone.co.uk website)

25 April 2003

MiniatureZone Gallery Archives (2000 - 2006) - Wargames for Dummies (or Dummies for Wargames)

This article is one of the articles that appeared on the old MiniatureZone website during the first six years 

MiniatureZone Gallery Archives (2000 - 2006) - Wargames for Dummies (or Dummies for Wargames)

Brightly coloured chips are fine, even dog-eared bits of cardboard could do, but for those more aesthetically minded this will not do at all.

Hidden figures or squads can be represented by numbered counters, so if we simply take this idea a  step further, why not stick a figure onto the counter ?  Number the "dummy" and then you can record it on a piece of paper.

The figures used are 1:72 and 1:76 scale Germans from various sets, all based on 2 and 5 (euro) cent coins, painted a neutral green and heavily drybrushed with sand to bring out the details.  It gives them a "ghostly" washed-out effect without spoiling the table.

You can use the figures you most like, or dislike, from sets of cheap plastic soldiers. If you find a set of figures has a disproportionate number of figures in a certain pose, use those figures.

In this colour they blend in well with the surroundings and are fine for the European theatre. You can use a similar procedure for desert and jungle warfare, just varying the base colour of the figures accordingly.

The numbers were printed out on a colour laser printer and stuck onto the base at the time of flocking.

01 January 2003

MiniatureZone Gallery Archives (2000 - 2006) - Piero de Sabbata - "WW2 German Train Station"

This article is one of many articles and gallery contributions from fellow amateur smallscale enthusiasts all over the world that appeared on the old MiniatureZone website during the first six years its existence when there were only a handful of websites dedicated to smallscale models and wargaming. 

If you've been around on the internet since back then, we hope you like the nostalgia, and if you´re a newcomer, hope you enjoy looking too.

MiniatureZone Gallery Archives (2000 - 2006) - Piero de Sabbata - "WW2 German Train Station"

Many similarities exist between model railway enthusiasts and military miniatures enthusiasts, as we both work in smallscale, we pay a lot of attention to fine detailing and we love to surround our finished models in environments with detailed scenery and buildings.

Courtesy of Piero de Sabatta from Italy we've a largescale military railway diorama set in the ruins of late war Germany.

Copyright 2003, Piero de Sabbata

28 November 2002

Dimestore Figures

Maybe if you pass by one of those cheapo shops "everything under $1.00" or whatever your equivalent currency may be in the kids' toy section you might be lucky and find some of these cheap toys, usually made in the Far East.

"British" Soldiers 1/72 scale

Not a real Brit to be seen, but in a brown plastic you get for just about 1.00 euro / dollar a bag with 15 identical sprues each of which has with 12 figures - an amazing 180 soldiers. These "British" soldiers are scaled-down copies of Airfix 1/32 scale US Marines, German Infantry and German Paras, and are all slightly smaller than their Airfix counterparts as you can see from the photos. The "American" soldiers are just the same figures but moulded in green plastic.

Though the detail is not as good as their original counterparts, they're not too bad. 

The Airfix 20mm size set of US Marines includes all the scaled down figures from their 1/32 set, except that the officer brandishing a pistol was never included. These dimestore figures do have him though !!


Airfix never scaled down their 1/32 scale Russians, but someone in Hong Kong decided to do so sometime in the 1990s. 

The detail is a bit rough, but even so they really are quite passable and once painted they make quite nice wargaming figures. The officer with binoculars is especially effective.

British Paras 1/72 scale

Now we have British Paratroopers this time, and are roughly modified and scaled-down copies of Airfix's 1/32 scale British paratroopers and are all wearing berets - no helmets to be seen. 

Most have deformed faces, they look like they´ve just gone ten rounds with Mike Tyson. 

Australian Infantry 1/72 scaleSoldiers

A rough looking bunch of large misfits here as you can see compared to the original Airfix figures 

In the end, there's nothing like the real thing but for a smallscale miniatures enthusiast figures like these can be of certain interest and sometimes even fill gaps and it does show though that whatever you do, if you make a good product, someone, somewhere will always try copying it, with varying degrees of success and it confirms the old saying "imitation is the best form of flattery".