Wednesday, April 16, 2014

28mm Half Timber Cottage

 While contemplating how to further detail my large residence, I decided to start figuring out a process on the laser to reproduce half timbered buildings. I thought it made sense to start with a smaller building as a proof of concept. This is a one room cottage suitable for rural areas of the battlefield. The entire building is made from laser-cut items including the roof shingles.

I'm pretty happy with the way this came out. I believe I will be able to use this technique on larger buildings to good effect. I learned a few lessons on this building, including not to go by existing terrain pieces made by others. The one I copied had no chimney, so mine doesn'! I've corrected this in my files so if I make another one it will have one end without a window suitable for a fireplace on that end.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

28mm Large Residence - WIP #2

Here are some more WIP shots of my 28mm European large residence for WWI and WWII skirmish gaming. I've added roof tiles using vacuform plastic sheet. I've painted them to represent slate roofing, which looks ok. I could have painted them as red clay tiles, but I was afraid that would have given the building too much of a Mediterranean feel which I didn't want. I've added window 'lights' (the inner frames for the individual panes) and smaller chimney liners which seem to be very characteristic of European multi-level dwellings. There's some photos at the bottom showing how the building opens up to allow access for figures.

Still on the to-do list is creating suitable front and back doors, painting the shutter hinge hardware in where the laser marks are, and working on the rear lean-to shed/outhouse. It's also possible I may add a walled front yard with some grass similar to what Matashiki did with his. I also need to do at least one more pass of dry-brushing to bring out more detail. The last pass will probably with higher contrast colors in a more random pattern to mimic the effect Matashiki got with his finished building.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

28mm Large Residence - WIP

Our Bolt Action game on Friday got be highly motivated to continue working on my 28mm terrain - particularly buildings suitable for WWI/WWII. This is the first laser-cut 28mm building I'm working on. I've modeled it loosely from the photograph of an actual residence in Carentan, France that was there during the D-day liberation attacks. A modern photo of that building is below, left. My inspiration came from Matakishi's excellent blog series on his efforts to re-model the entire Carentan scene from the Band of Brothers HBO series.

I've made the roof removable to allow soldiers to be placed inside. I've also made the top floor removable to allow easy placement of soldiers in the first floor without having to remove the top floor occupants and floor. Like Matakishi's version I will be putting a lean-to shed on the rear left side where there are no windows. Unlike Matakishi's version, I chose to put the assumed stairwell on the same side as the lean-to. This explains the missing window.

Next steps will be to clad the roof with some vacuform roof tile texture sheet I've purchased from a railroad supply site on the Internet, and then to paint it up. Like Matakishi, I'll be spraying the flat surfaces with a textured paint to mimic the original stucco finish on the original building. For simplicity, and because they won't be usable in games, I will be leaving the dormer windows in the attic off.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

More Bolt Action WWII

We had so much fun playing Bolt Action last week that my uncle decided to run another game last night. This was a much larger game with more armor and approximately 15-20 commands per side. I drew a German die again and this time was defending a key town from US infantry supported by a Sherman and an M-10 tank destroyer. The ever present US air power also caused us considerable harm. This game was all USA from start to finish. I had some minor success with my reconnaissance vehicles, but other than that it was mostly a strong showing by the US forces.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

28mm WWII Germans

I've taken a short break on my 'secret project' to let some ideas gel and because I had been working on it very intensely and just needed a breather. During that break I completed painting 11 Warlord WWII German figures. These first four are Heer mortar crew to go with the 120mm mortar I painted earlier. Initially I wasn't happy with the camouflage smocks on these figures, but after an Army Painter wash I'm much more pleased. The officer figure's map I'm particularly happy with. 

These two figures are an ammo carrier for one of the many MG-42 figures I have, and a solitary flame thrower figure. I'm not sure I'll be using the flame thrower, but it came with the other specialists shown below so I painted it up while I had them on the painting table.
This is my tank hunter group. I mostly bought these figures for the action shot figure firing the panzerfaust. Sure, he's not all that practical on the table top, but wow such an awesome pose. There is also a figure carrying a rifle, armful of panzerfausts and an anti-tank mine. He'll find a spot in any of my infantry squads for sure. The last three figures are all carrying panzershreck anti-tank launchers. For Bolt Action, only two are needed for a team, but for historical games the third will see use with a regular rifleman, or the figure carrying all the panzerfausts, as an assistant.

These final three figures and mortar are figures I picked up already painted in the flea market area at Cold Wars. I've given them a quick Army Painter 'dip' and based them up. I always think you can use another 81mm mortar.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Bolt Action WWII - More Photos

Some additional photos my uncle took of the game from the previous post. He's a more artistic and skilled photographer so these have much better composition. Enjoy!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Bolt Action WWII

Saturday a few of us got together at my uncle's house to play some Bolt Action WWII. The scenario was US armored infantry in M3 Half Tracks supported by P38 Lightning ground attack planes defending an important bridge against a larger Heer Grenadier force.

We drew lots and Rob and I got the Germans and Ed and Bob got the Americans. This was a good game to get used to playing the rules and while the Germans did well, when time was called the Americans still had the town firmly in hand. There were many dead Americans who paid for the town with their lives, but hold they did.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Moderns at MarkD's Place

Last night my friend MarkD hosted another game using his own modern skirmish rules. The game was set in a fictitious country in modern Africa where local uprising forces were raiding a town to capture ammunition and supplies. I played on the government side trying to prevent the theft. I represented a small force of French 'advisors' while my teammates represented the local military forces.

The game was great fun and came down to a slim point victory for the rebel forces. My French suffered a good case of 'bad ammo' and missed a lot while my 2iC and communications officer were taken out by rebels held up in a house. My only success, a good burst of fire from my heavy machine gun which took out several charging rebel zealots.

I must apologize for the poor photos.  My camera batteries were dying and wouldn't fire the flash, so the lighting is quite variable. In person the lighting was fine for gaming, but my digital camera really wanted to back fill with the flash but couldn't.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Secret Project

Just a quick note, that while my posts have and in the future will be slowing down a bit, it's not because I'm not still blogging and wargaming. I'm just working intensely on a large personal wargaming project that isn't yet blog worthy, but in a few months may be. During the down time I'll still be posting games I've played in and the occasional unit I've painted up during short breaks from my big project.

I promise, when I have something blog-worthy I'll post it here right away. Until then, check back for the occasional post but please forgive the lower than normal post volume.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Miniature Building Authority 28mm Wrecked Buildings

These are two pre-painted 28mm European wrecked buildings that I bought at Cold Wars. They're made by Miniature Building Authority. I intend on using them for WWI and WWII Bolt Action skirmish gaming. This first building has two usable floors and a very interesting side with no windows which should make it quite the fortification from that direction. I liked the versatility of this piece a lot plus it fits in just about anywhere from England to all the way to eastern Germany.

This second building I fell in love with right away due to the great advertising on the side of it. It's slightly less useful for troops with the 2nd floor caved in, although I may scratch build an insert to use as an improvised 2nd floor. We'll see. The only tiny complaint I had with this piece is the shutters on the back side weren't painted differently from the rest of the building. This I will correct myself with a small spot of paint - probably a nice forest green.