Archive | October 2015

October in the Union!


Sprue Cutter’s Union October Topic:
We all get lazy at times but let’s face it, there are areas of this hobby that modelers cannot get skimpy. Whether it’s a part of the assembly process, a finishing technique, or a particular tool, what do you think are the essential aspects you cannot afford to cut corners on during a build? What are your imperatives?

I’m going to tackle this one a bit differently. For me, the one thing that is imperative on a build is: finishing the damn model!
I have a problem. I used to think it was pretty rare, but after being involved in various Facebook modeling and gaming groups, I realized that I am not alone. I find it very difficult to finish builds. I’ll get close, but never quite get there.
I have finished one model in 3 years. ONE. And I hate it. Every time I look at it, I see all of my mistakes magnified a hundred times. I have no issue filling and sanding or painting, or gluing fiddly bits (though I dislike photoetch) I just find it difficult to get over the finish line.
I have an ACE 1/72 GAZ-67 Jeep kit that was a total pain in my ass. Microscopic photoetch, parts that fit like crap—you know, typical ACE fair—but I got through almost all of that. I literally just have to put on the wheels and paint (I love painting!) it and it’s done. But mistakes were made, and as long as I don’t ever finish it, I don’t have to accept criticism about it, explain it or even look at it.
My wargaming stuff is a bit better, probably because I have to use it, and there isn’t (for BattleTech and 40K, anyways) a historic aspect that can be used to judge the thing. But even those are rarely ever ‘done’. Basing, final weathering, unpainted tracks or other small items continue to hold the models back from completion. Why? I’ve a few ideas but no need to lay my various psychosis out to the world.
I can get through all the usual tedious fair, and indeed, I often find the most annoying or most repetitive tasks oddly therapeutic, but the (usually) simple task of finishing everything up, continues to elude me and leaves a pile of very expensive pewter and plastic in the corner of my hobby room.
So, my imperative is going to buckle down and finish these piles of plastic and pewter, and if I really hate them, give them away to someone who won’t feel a constant pang of regret or self-criticism every time they see a missed mold line, or mis-applied paint.

Project: Destroyer Tank Hunter

OK. So I have been kind of hobbying—not as much as I would like, but things are moving along. I did get an opportunity to do some paid writing, so I jumped on it, and it has taken up a fair amount of time as of late, but I’m ready to get back to some gluing.

One project that I don’t think I’ve ever posted here is, ironically enough, the first one I started for 40K. Scratch building a Destroyer Tank Hunter. I just really liked how it looked and its fluff. I really dig Soviet casement style assault guns, so this was right up my alley


Is that a big ol’ laser cannon on your glacis, or are you just happy to see me?

Anyways, I started this thing like eighteen months ago, and work on it (like everything) in fits and spurts.

Before buying anything, I downloaded scores of pictures and searched for anything I could on the ‘net. I discovered that the model used a Chimera top plate for the hull top, but, for the life of me, I couldn’t find anything that worked for the gun mount. So I decided to build my own out of styrene (it has only recently come to my attention that one of the various Baneblade options has something that would work pretty well). I went with something evoking that of an SU-122, and what my limited abilities are capable of.

Ok, not really like that at all...

Ok, not really like that at all…

Well, it works, anyways...

Well, it works, anyways…

I also deceided at this point that I want the tank to be able to also act as a Thunderer, which is a Destroyer that’s had its complicated laser cannon replaced with a Demolisher cannon. So I went with the obvious route and did a short length of thick tubing in which the longer, narrower laser cannon barrel would slip into. While the short tubing lacks the…we’ll call it presence, of the actual demolisher cannon, the inner diameter of the tube is almost exactly the same as the Demolisher, so it’s good enough for me.
However, This is wehre I discovered that my casement was slightly crooked. Not really noticable on its own, But it became very noticeable with the long laser cannon barrel.
Not willing to tear apart the casement, I sanded the gun mount and got it fairly close to plum.

The Thunder from Down Under.

The Thunder from Down Under.


No, I'm not over compensating.

No, I’m not over compensating.

I also tried magnetizing the barrel so it would stick in better. Instead, I screwed up the polarity and made a nifty shooting gun barrel. Check your polarity kids!

Succulently phrased Insane clown posse.

Succulently phrased Insane clown posse.

So now I just have to add the outer track housing, the treads and figure out what I’m going to do for exhaust. Oh, and paint. So, really it’s practically finished…