Saturday, 6 December 2014

Scratch Built and Commercial Terrain

I will start this post off with the rubberised roads that I received through the post from Early War Miniatures. I purchased these at the Warfare show last month but as they had completely sold out, they sent them on to me with free postage and an extra piece of road as a thank you.

I had seen these roads on some of Richard Clarke's (TFL) and the Perry's table layouts and have been meaning to buy them for a while. I like the idea of being able to run your roads up over hills, something you are unable to do with rigid roads, unless you actually build the road into the hill. 

I purchased my set of cobbled roads for £45 which came unpainted but they paint up really easy using water based paints. Highly recommended.
28mm vehicle for scale. They do roads for 15/20mm scale as well. I just need to blend the static grass on the edge of the roads to match my terrain.

Whilst at the Warfare Show, I treated myself to a ready made and painted 'Well and Wall' pack from Again these were all sold out at the show, so they were sent onto me with free postage. They come painted to a very high standard with three sections of wall, a well with realistic water effect and a wooden 'nodding donkey'. I did repaint the walls and add some static grass but that was only so it would match the colours of my own terrain. Highly recommended and excellent value.

My third purchase of the Warfare Show was the plastic Middle Eastern building from Perry Miniatures. I made a base for the building but didn't glue it down as it does not have a removable roof, so that you can place your figures inside. Again, a very nice kit. 

The rest of the buildings are what I have scratch built and I will be making a second batch of buildings, some roads, high walls and maybe a market to go with this collection.

When dry, I use tile grout, PVA glue and sand where needed.

  When dry, paint everything in dark brown paint.

I tried a new painting formula for these buildings using the following emulsion house paints from Wilko Home Store. They are tester pots that only cost £1 each but have about four times more paint than what you would get in your average pot of model paint, so ideal for doing your terrain. 
After the dark brown base coat, I use in the following order - Wilko - Nutmeg Spice, Retro Ochre, Sand, On Deck. 

For the wooden thatching on a couple of the buildings, I cut up some bristles from a broom head that I also bought from Wilko and PVA glued down onto the frame work. The glue was still wet when I took these pictures but when dry you wont be able to see the white glue.

   As mentioned in my last post, I plan to use these buildings not just for Modern Afghanistan but also for WW2 Desert and The North West Frontier.
And to finish off with the usual action shots.


The dome on the roof of the building was just one half of some plastic packaging from an old Christmas decoration and the table surface is an old dust sheet that I had.
I will try to get some more buildings done but it is freezing in the garage at the moment, even with the heater on.

Monday, 24 November 2014

HELICOPTER STANDS (New-Ray Die-cast 28mm)

With Richard Clarke of 'Too Fat Lardies' fame, working on an adaption of his WW2 Chain of Command rules for the 'Modern Afghanistan' conflict, I have been inspired to work on some more of my collection for this period.

In future posts there will be more painted vehicles and figures for the Insurgents, British Infantry and USMC. I will be making a lot of buildings and terrain for this period in readiness for when Richard releases the new version of these rules.

Hopefully the terrain and buildings will also be suitable for my North West Frontier and Sudan collections and I have the Perry WW2 Desert War stuff in the pipeline which I can use this for.

I will start off with showing you what I have done with my helicopter stands. The helicopters are from a company called New-Ray and they are Die-cast 1/56 and 1/60 scale, which are perfect for 28mm. They are also excellent value as they come ready painted and you can pick them up on ebay brand new for about half the price of an unpainted 28mm resin/plastic tank/vehicle. The Apache I picked up for £12 with free postage and the Black Hawkes were £15 each.

The only problem with these helicopters is, being die-cast, they are quite heavy.  I have read about people making 'Flight Stands' for their model aircraft using clear plastic rods and magnets or retractable car aerials, which is all well and good if you are using a plastic model or it is of a smaller scale.

 If I was to go down this path I would have to probably make a tri-pod stand, with quite a large base if I wanted to give the chopper some height from the table surface and for it to still be stable (could you imagine the damage what one of those things would do to your lovely painted figures and terrain if you happened to knock it over.) 

You would also still have the problem of attaching your helicopter to your new made stand and in the end I decided to stick with the original stands that each model comes with. They have a lug on the top of the stand which slots into the underside of the chopper and a reasonable size base which makes it nice and stable.

The down side with the original stands are that they are black and also only gives the chopper about a four inch ground clearance. If they had been made of clear plastic, I could have used them as they were but as you will see, I have now upgraded them to blend in more with the table.

I started off by covering the base in white PVA glue and then dipping it in your favourite basing material, sand/scatter/ballast. When dry, spray the whole stand in white primer and then when dry, spray in a suitable desert colour. I used Bolt Action German Dunkelgelb spray paint which I happened to have at hand and the colour would do at a push.

I then got some of that white packaging that Perry Miniatures used to use for packing their figures in those little black boxes and dipped this very lightly into PVA glue and then again dipped very lightly into suitable basing material, scatter or sand.  When dry, give a light spray with Dunkelgelb and when dry fit this over the stand and tease it out to give it the effect of the down draft of the chopper kicking up a sand storm.

Enough of my nattering and on with the pictures.