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Bolt Action Part Duex

Well, it’s been a couple of weeks, but I’ve made some headway on my little test squad of American troops:

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Basecoated and test washes applied.

Here they are basecoated and washed. For the washes I tried 5 different ones to see how I liked them, but I can say that I don’t think that how I did the zenithal highlighting had a lot of impact here. I’m going to end up priming another figure straight black and see how he comes out as a control, however,  it’s not like rattle canning the additional colors took a lot of time, so I’m not really out of anything either.

 

For the colors on these guys, I went with Army Painter Army Green for the coats and Puttees, Vallejo Model Color (VMC) English Uniform Brown for the paints, VMC Iraqui Sand for the pack, VMC Pastel Green for the webbing and Leather Brown for the boots.

Now, a few of these colors I’ve gotten from the web, and others were kind of ‘eyeball to memory” trying to figure out colors from re-enactor’s gears and the such from Google Image results. I’m not happy with packs (too light) and the pants (just not close).

With that in mind, I decided to order some books from my local  library dealing with uniforms and see if I could come up with some more accurate colors. I’m not done yet, but one book that’s just jam packed with pictures is Windrow and Hawkins’: The World War II GI, US Army Uniforms 1941-45 (https://goo.gl/vS28x8). I’ll probably do a blog post on just the uniform stuff I learn from there.

After I was done basecoating, I attacked them with a variety of washes, including some I made from Les Burley’s wash recipe (https://goo.gl/1k2JEc). I made his Soft and Heavy Body Black along with a Sepia Wash. I also used Vallejo Sepia Wash.  For the Burley Sepia wash, I tried a couple of different ink concentrations: 40 and 50 drops of the FW ink.

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L-R: Vallejo Sepia, 40 Drops Burley Sepia, Soft Body Black, 50 Drops Burley Sepia and “Mix”

 

The Vallejo Sepia Wash worked, and would probably be fine for this, but I felt like playing around. The 40 Drop concentration of Burley Sepia wash was really light. A couple of applications would probably work OK as well. However, my goal is speed, so I I’ll probably skip this. I really liked how the Soft Body Black flowed and acted, but it was too harsh of a color. Next was a 50 drop concentration of Burley’s Sepia and this was pretty good. This maybe the way I go. The last one was a bit of a mix that I, uh forgot to write down like an idiot. Of course, I like this one a lot. I think this was the fifty-drop Sepia concentration, with some black ink mixed in. I *think* I figured it would be the fifty-drop sepia with 5 or 10 drops of black ink.

So, I need to find a better color for the packs, the pants and nail down my wash. And then I’ll be able to start.

But I am getting there, and learning quite a bit as I do so, which I consider a win.

Till next time!

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Bolt Action and Trying New Things

I, like many wargamers, am a big history buff, and I have a deep interest in the Second World War. So, when I saw Warlord’s Bolt Action at GenCon 2011 (or maybe it was ’12) I was immediately fascinated.  While I had obviously seen Flames of War, the small scale (15mm)  didn’t really do much for me (I already do micro-armor and BattleTech in 6mm), where as the comparatively large size of BA’s 28mm pulled at me. Much like the modeling opportunities presented by Warhammer 40K (also allegedly 28mm), I felt I could really have some fun modeling these guys.

Alas, the timing wasn’t right and it wasn’t to February that I finally took the plunge and picked up some minis to play Bolt Action. Like most of my purchases, I bought a US army force used off a friend. The infantry is a mix of Warlord plastics and Black Tree Design metals backed by a collection of Warlord resin vehicles and metal support units.

While the Black Tree sculpts look nice, proportionally they just don’t jive with the Warlord plastics. I’ll probably sell those off and use to the money towards fleshing out my force.

Anyways, as I have about a million different projects going, I’ve decided that I’m going to “speed” through these guys. I’ll never be a Golden Demon painter and I think I need to accept a certain amount of compromise on these guys to get them to the table in a reasonable amount of time. And, even when I do spend a lot of time on a model, I still find myself missing something or screwing something up. So I’ll spend my time on character models and paint up the rank-and-file to (what I hope is) a good table top standard.

To achieve this, I’m going to be trying out a couple new-to-me techniques. Including using Zenithal highlighting and ‘dips’ (though I’ll brush it on).

So to begin, I picked five random GIs, cleaned them up, based them with some sand and hot glued them to a strip of cardboard.

I then rattle-canned them Colorplace flat black all over and let them dry. The next day, I hit them with grey primer, holding the can parallel  to the mini’s torso and applied thin, quick coats.

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Grey mid-coat applied. You can kind of seen the black in the shadows.

 

I followed this up with white, holding the can directly over the mini’s head and again, spraying in quick, thin coats.

You can see the built in highlights contrasted to the black basecoat. The question is, will this show through the coats of paint to follow?

To be continued…

Vindicare

So one of the side projects I’ve been working on since February has been a Vindicare Assassin from Games Workshop. Basically a super sniper with a BFG.

I thought he’d be a decent addition to my Imperial Guard army, making up for the usual lackluster hitting ability the Guard is famous for (and my abysmal dice rolling skills don’t help with). He can also ally with my future Space Marine and Sisters army’s as well.

I also decided I really wanted to paint this guy my best, so I picked up the White Dwarf that had the relative “how-to-paint” article in it, and got cracking. Though I will say I substituted some colors (especially for the base) that looked close enough. On others, such as the Dark Reaper and Kabalite Green I picked up as I had nothing even close—which is saying something with an inventory of 248 paints…

While I see room for lots of improvement, I am really happy with how he turned out. The highlights are a bit too thick, and in someplace awkwardly placed, but as this is really the first time I’ve gone in for edge highlights, I think it’s pretty good.

I’m also really happy with base. I misplaced the original (only for it to pop up a week later) so I used a correctly sized MDF one. The kit itself came with the pillar and standing platform to glue the assassin too. but that didn’t cover the whole base. I decided to glue some grit on both the platform and the base to extend and tie everything together. I also added some of my bricks in to rubble the place up a bit more. Then everything was painted and dry brushed per the directions in the White Dwarf and Boom! A pretty nice looking base, if I say so myself.

Getting There—Project: Valkdetta

Well, after more than a year, Project: Valkdetta is mostly complete. All the major sub-assemblies are done and it looks like what it’s supposed to be. I’m missing the lower vertical stabilizers (I’ll have to look if I ever got them or not) and the front sensor array. If I don’t have the parts I’ll have to see if I can buy them reasonably or if I’ll have to plastic-card them.

Getting the booms and wings on was a bit of pain, what with the original alignment pegs having been broken in the tear-down process. It’s not perfect but I did the best I could. With the wings at least, the old mounting holes were still present, so I used the center of them to drill out holes for pinning.

Hard to see, but pins for the wings to mount to.

Hard to see, but pins for the wings to mount to.

For gluing all the major assemblies, I used JB Quick 5-miniute epoxy. I wont say it’s indestructible, but if something breaks, things have gone horribly wrong.

While I was test fitting the left wing on, I noticed the wing had gotten horribly warped. I can only imagine that it happened after I broke the model down and must have set something down on it.

You can see Valkdett's wing compared to a plastic Valkyrie wing. Just a *bit* off...

You can see Valkdetta’s wing compared to a plastic Valkyrie wing. Just a *bit* off…

Not to be discouraged (I totally was…) I decided to try boiling it and bending it back to the correct angle. Once again, it’s not perfect, but the angle is correct now (even if the wing has some ripples in it) and I decided to go ahead and glue it on.

You can see the left wing isn't perfectly straight, but...

You can see the left wing isn’t perfectly straight, but…

I still need to fill in some gaps on the wing to fuselage joint and clean up some of the JB Quick that got where it shouldn’t be, but Valkdetta is now clearly a Valkyrie. I’ll fluff her rough appearance to being an old bird with a lot of battles behind her.

A *bit* of an improvement. If I say so myself.

A *bit* of an improvement. If I say so myself.

Some Updates

So as I’m dealing with a bum ankle, I might as well post some pictures and what not of what I’ve been up too.

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Project: Valkdetta

Valkdetta is getting along. Engines and center hump-thingy are on, as well at the one boom. The other boom was a bit trickier—I had to clearance the engine to make sure it fit. That’s all settled now, so this weekend should see her getting close to completion. Just in time for the new Death From the Skies book to hit, even though it apparently doesn’t have anything about the Vendetta—or any of the FW fliers.

 

Here is my Vindicare assassin. I’m trying to follow the tutorial in “White Dwarf” as closely as I can. It’s my fist time painting anything in that style, so… I don’t hate it yet, but those edge highlights are a bit thick in my opinion.

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REPENT!

This is my ‘bits’ priest. I picked up a bag of WFB Empire bits at Adepticon for $4 and made this guy. I added boots to him, and cut the spikes of his mace. He still looked more Chaos then not though, so I added an Aquila emblem from the Imperial Tank Sprue. I like him much better now. The autogun was made from a spare lasrifle, plastic tubing and some greenstuff.

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For the Somewhat Better Good!

I’ve been working on my Tau infantry at work during my lunches (cleaning them up and such) and decided I might as well throw paint on them. These are all second hand, and let’s face it, the old sculpts weren’t so great to begin with. These will be fluffed as a backwater garrison that suddenly got reinforced with some front line units. That’ll explain the old metal stealth suits I have as well as the old Crisis suits.

More Valhallans

Part one HERE

So I got my Mad Robot Ushanka and Kurgan heads in the other day and immediately glued them to some Shock Troops.
The Kurgan helmet head (basically a Soviet SSH-40-ish helmet) fit perfectly. The Ushanka… did not. Due to the Shock Troop’s high collar, the bottom of the Ushanka hits it and makes the head stick up quite a bit. I made a greenstuff “neck” to prop it up, but I think what I’ll probably do is position the head and cut the collar down so the head fits right. But maybe not. I’m still mulling it over.

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With Green stuff neck

 

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Side-by-side with the Kurgan head. The Ushanka head is actually taller as I left more of his built in base under the feet. But I’m not sure if I see a notable enough difference.

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Anyways, I’ll try cutting ones collar down and sticking a Ushanka down on that and seeing how I like it.

 

 

Project Valk-Detta Progress

While it’s been nearly a year since I’ve documented any progress on my old, second-hand Forge World Valkyrie, I have occasionally tooled around with it here and there.

Since the last update, I’ve attached the cockpit assembly to the fuselage. Now it’s still not perfectly straight, but it’s now barely perceptible.

 

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As purchased. A *bit* off…

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Much better.

However, there has been a crap load of filling and sanding and filling and sanding and… Well, you get the point. The transition between the fuselage and the cockpit on the bottom has been a huge pain, but it’s getting there. Right now I have the top…hump? epoxied to a sheet of plastic to make sure it’s flat and give it a bit of a height boost, as I think the cockpit module sits a bit higher than it did before—here’s hoping that doesn’t mess everything else up. I also need to figure out if the engines go on before the tail boom, or if it’s the other way around.

Here’s some more pics of the old girl, which I’m thinking I’ll name Phoenix.