Posts Tagged ‘basing’

In a Battlefield of their own

November 29, 2012

Happy coincidences are always welcome, especially when they produce figures which fit into somewhere the manufacturer didn’t intend.  These modern figures from Hasslefree fit quite neatly into the world of the popular game “Battlefield 3”. For a player of that game, like me, it does make them irresistable.  The figures are very similar but have a choice of two main weapons and seperate heads.  Giving them different paintjobs makes them look less similar so that’s the course I took.

These come on slotta bases, and like a lot of the smaller producers it’s a restriction which the sculptors strive to escape from. Kevin White is no different in this aspect and the miniatures feet are barely in contact with the slotta bar. As I base on tuppences having such a small area of contact between figure and base can be a problem.

Not wanting to repeat problems I’ve had before when totally removing the slotta bar I decided on a new angle and this was to cut away the bulk of it leaving just a thin strip. This gives a lot more contact area but also allows the lightness sculpted in to the piece. Worth a try and a lot quicker than pinning.

In the computer game the troops have a very loose dress code, so rather than try to replicate a scheme I decided to just go for the gneral Battlefield Casual look which they all seem to have. I’m happy with the finish althoug, yet again, the photos have me sucking my teeth at the touches of dust, the odd wrong dab, etc, which only becomes apprent at this size. Good news is it distracts me from any blurry photos.

Hasslefree are about to release another pair in this series, and I suspect they’ll be as animated, well detailed and generally brilliantly sculpted as we’ve come to expect. A must-paint.

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Rubbish Grass

August 22, 2012

These are a few markers for general rubbish and grass tufts which we also use for marking IEDs.  The smaller ones are either Skale Scenics field grass or small scraps of metal folded and partially painted, The larger ones are chopped gas cannisters from the ever wonderful Fenris.  They’re all based on Fenris laser-cut ply bases. In game they’ve proved very interesting to use. In the first game we used them Daring Dan managed to set one off by driving over it in his very first move, this set a tone of wariness which has only worn off slightly as the majority of them are nothing but markers for grass or rubbish.

One flew over the machine gun nest

July 5, 2011

Regular readers will recall my conversion towards table mats and drinks coasters as bases for structures thanks to Daring Dan. Someone gave me four old drinks coaster for this very purpose and here is the last one finally finished. It’s a machine gun nest for the jungle made mainly of cork cut to strips, DIY filler, and coffee stirrers. There’s a bit of various flocks, a plastic plant but most effective is the spagnum moss donated by Wobbly Steve.

It’s a very simple build, crudely slapped together and saved by the filler render and the liberal use of flocks and moss. I did try to make it as unobvious a bunker as possible. When I find my hessian I will cut some to cover both gun port and door and remove the contrast they produce.

As is my preference I’ve made it so you can get inside with enough room for a based machine gun and crew. The interior could do with further detailing. Perhaps a pin-up of Betty Grable or a photo of the Emporer.

It’s a jolly piece which I like a lot not least for it’s simplicity as well as another coaster based project where the base didn’t warp in the slightest. HURRAH!

Cross my palm with silver

May 7, 2011

For our recent adventures in the jungle it was obvious we’d need some foliage, and this year I’d decided to get more scenics and fewer figures. This as part of an effort to minimise the lead hill but also to round out the collection having noticed how some of the best looking games aren’t all about the figures. The other fun aspect to scenics is finding things you can use across projects, so these are great for WW2 jungle, North Africa plus our modern adventures in Jihadistan. Of course spending too much time on the interweb I knew of a place to get brilliant trees from, namely Ebob’s forthcoming new range for Viet Nam – Recon28.

Now the range has been released yet, so I had to wrangle some pre-release models from the man Bob himself. It was worth the effort as these trees are quite stunning, and match rather neatly the pace at which gaming is getting better. The trunks are real wood, the fronds are plastic, theres some coir and even coconuts on many of them. They come with wire spikes so are suitable for game boards too. The two above are based on my cheapskate bases, made from four tuppenny pieces which therefore cost only eight pence.

This one is based on a washer which cost over twenty of the Queen’s new pennies, I wouldn’t mind so much but she wasn’t paying for them. However the trees remain divine and I’d suggest of you want some to pre-order them now because otherwise I’ll buy them all.

You Humvee it and I’ll play along

May 7, 2011

Here’s the latest of my scenics built on a coaster. Now last time I posted one of these and mentioned it on the forums there was some small confusion over what a coaster actually was. It’s like a place mat for a plate but for a cup or glass, it’s a heavy version of a beer mat, and it looks like these. That fascinating subject address onward with the important bit – the bit about toys!A while back I was granted entrance to the Fenris Games tiny bag of miscasts, and seeing a pair of these grabbed them, ran from the building and haven’t been back since. The boy slug grabbed one leaving me with the other but we both had the same bright idea i.e. “What a wonderful opportunity for a wrecked Humvee.”.  So I took it, a coaster, one section of the Fenris damaged Jersey barrier set and started work.

First I cut a piece of plasticard the shape and size of the coaster, having finished the piece I wish I’d filled the edges as the lip on this is the only bit I don’t like, and them cut a hole in it with some dramatic cracks rippling out from it, stuck it on the coaster having dug out the hole a little and them worked on it a bit with some green stuff. Bish on the lonely wheel, bosh on the barrier, and bash on the painted Humvee.

The bullet holes are drilled but the shattered windscreen is painted, a few additional pieces of debris scattered around and the piece is ready rather quickly. The figures are TAG SWAT but with a little modding with greenstuff. I would link to them but they can’t be arsed to answer my email so I can’t be arsed to link to the slackers.

The tyre was drilled out to look like that, with a tiny piece of greenstuff added, although I could have got away with just the holes.

In the end a lovely little barricade for folk to shelter behind… I feel a visit to Jihadistan is on the horizon.

Air we go, air we go, air we go!

January 19, 2011

Not sure exactly why, but Slug’s taste for airborne troops even extends to those pesky Yanks who did half the work but are in all the films. This is one of Bolt Actions finely crafted .30 cal teams. The level of detail is divine and combined with just how much kit those spoiled yanks had presents quite a painting challenge.

I’ve experimented with painting thin wire copper coloured and cutting it up with clippers to use as spent shells as part of the basing. Although the Slug doesn’t base as a rule this developement at insane detail intrigued him enough for him to insist on doing that part himself. Sure they’re not exactly true to scale, but the effect works regardless!

 

In this shot you can even see how he’s painted on the “Screaming Seagulls” patch, hopefully they’ll be hacking down Germans on a table near us soon.

I Chain, I Saw, I Conquered

January 3, 2011

A fine example of co-operation between the generations with this deadly young lad from the delicately fragrant Hasslefree Miniatures. This is one of their Juvenile range and is called Palin, they’re not the cheapest miniatures you can get but they do rate highly for their quality.

Slugs painted the figure and I did the splatter and the basing, and it proved to be one of the best results we’ve managed with the Wargames Factory plastic zombies.

Nice Bush

September 12, 2009

DSCF2252No I’m not on the wacky baccy, above is the mix of flocks I’m currently using for bushes. The photo doesn’t show the tones well but take my word for it there’s two tones of Javis bush material and one of another make which I can’t recall. I thought I’d take the opportunity to show how I make bushes, either for bases of miniatures, or scenics.

DSCF2260Here’s the base I want to put a bush on. I’ve chopped the bush mix really quite fine and have it nearby, so I’ve added a blob of superglue gel near the fence post on the base. Then I take a very large pinch of bush mix and squeeze it between thumb and finger to really compress it, then press the whole lot down onto the glue, hold it briefly in place and then whisk my digits away to avoid becoming glued to the base.

DSCF2261This produces a reasonable looking bush as you can see. It can be left like this or pushed and prodded around with the point of a pencil. Often this produces a bushier than bush look but you can tell it’s won’t hold for long.

DSCF2263To make it set in position I then add a single drop of liquid superglue, which the material then sucks up and when dry is much tougher. If you do add this second touch and add too much liquid superglue there’s a danger of the bush drying out with a white finish to it. It’s very much a matter of putting on too little rather than too much, and the only way to figure that out is to practice.

Base Sick Instinct

September 12, 2009

DSCF2271Well I’ve finally finished what remained of my armies for this WW2, and about bleeding time too. Every thing after this is a luxury, so I can concentrate on a few scenics and the whole point of this activity tons of games. Hurrah! There’s a bit of work due on the storage front but by all estimations I should have these all stored away in time for… well in time to get them out for a game next weekend so long as tine is willing as we’ve off to the Euro Militaire show next Sunday. It’s always a difficult one to make into a family day out as the dominant species does appear to be middle-aged male virgins who have no idea how one should act in the presence of either women nor children, and the fact that many of them are mainland Europeans doesn’t help.

DSCF2267The best of the latest are the command bases above, again going for more of a mini-diorama look than a typical base.

DSCF2268This is the British Para Command base, with them taking cover behind a fence.

DSCF2269Likewise for the German Infantry Command, well I had half a fence section left, plus the luxury of a Kettenkrad.

DSCF2270Meanwhile the German Paras have choosen a more rural setting, covering behind a haywagon.

DSCF2272One of the regular bases with a bit of detail is this of a Tommy HMG crew legging it through long grass. As nice as these and the others look, and as happy as I am to have them finally finished I must admit I’ve grown sick of basing infantry over the past week.

Flocking bases

September 7, 2009

DSCF2218Following a comment from fellow blogger Ssendam asking about my basing technique I thought it would make much more sense to show it rather than explain it, and it’s one of those things a lot of us seasoned gamers do without thinking and it’s not obvious to newcomers to the wonderful hobby of wargaming. Above is a GHQ German Horsedrawn Wagon painted and washed superglued onto a plastic base after it has been roughly textured with green putty or milliput – green putty drys much quicker but pongs and can remove paint, milliput takes much longer to dry but can be sculpted and can be painted before fully dried. Once dried the base has been painted with  Vallejo Flat Earth, and then roughly drybrushed with any other darker brown. A small stone has been superglued on for added detail.

DSCF2224If you want to add a little more depth to the brown, like you might on a very muddy base, add a dark wash. You might have noticed how I’m using brown before adding the grass, whereas a lot of folk use green. This is a personal preference borne of knowing how after a few years flock can fall off and this way it reveals the mud below, combined with liking quite rough looking bases with a lot of soil showing.

DSCF2219For flock I typically use three different types based on the palette I want to use across an entire project. Given that this project is Europe ’44-’45 I decided to go for a high summer look. Above is a blurred image of my dark green flock, but it still functions to give an idea of the colour, which I mixed from three bags of rather posh flock from EMA. It’s meant to represent the best kept lawns you might find.

DSCF2220Here’s my light mix, a combination of several bags of Javis flock which is typically spongier, mixed with a little of the EMA dark stuff. This is meant to represent sun-bleached grass.

DSCF2222Here’s my mid-range tone everyone’s favourite static grass. It comes as this wide spectrum of colours ready mixed.

DSCF2225Back to the wagon and here’s the first coat of PVA glue sparingly dotted around. Now I’m after a patchy effect, so I add each layer in patches. For thicker or more regular grass you use thicker or more regular coats of glue.

DSCF2226Then as speedily as you can pile on the first layer of flock, here it’s the darkest one. I’ve gently tapped it down, and then tapped off the bulk of the excess. Now at this stage, before the glue dries, if you leave it as shown the glue will spread and when dried most of this flock will stay on the base. It’s totally acceptable as it is, but I want a bit more soil showing.

DSCF2228So I wait less than a minute and then blow off the whole of the excess flock. This is much more what I’m looking for.

DSCF2229Having let the first layer dry completely, I now add the second coat of PVA glue. Again this is patchy, some on bare soil some on the flock already there.

DSCF2230On goes the light mix, follow the same procedure as previously to get the look you’re after.

DSCF2236I decided on a bush, which I added before the static grass, using Javis bush material. Again this is a mix of two tones from seperate bags, chopped roughly together. To attach to the base I use superglue gel, into which I press a large pinch of the Javis hedge mix. When dried you can, should you choose, pluck and form a good looking bush which you can then set with a little liquid superglue gently poured onto the top branches. This, like the PVA glue will produce some shine, all of which will vanish once you matt varnish the base in it’s entirity.After the bush I put a few blobs of PVA around for the final layer, the static grass.

DSCF2238Here’s the near finished base, it just needs a matt varnish, which I’ve not done as I spray my bases en-masse. Obviously using three types of flock triples the time it takes to finish each base but I think the finished look is worth it. It is worth experimenting as you go along, to get the kind of finish you’re after, one thing worth considering is mixing near identical shades of flock, for 6mm scale it produces the kind of detail you need for realism on such a delicate scale.