Posts Tagged ‘Days Gone By’

Pulpit Fiction

February 24, 2011

I admit it’s not quite finished, but aside from about another 30 minutes of effort it’s as good as – plus I had the camera to hand so that’s enough for me to bother you with these massive photos of yet another Anglican League prototype; the Mobile Pulpit. Designed to bring salvation to the ignorant brutes of the BUF, and words of comfort to right minded and god fearing folk this vehicle is capable of evangelising at up to 34 miles per hour!

The basis for this conversion, hack, mod or whatever you choose to call it is a Lledo “Days Gone By” 1933 Austin Taxi off that Ebay for under a fiver. This was taken apart and painted, the only “mechanical” alterations being a little bit of corrugated iron on the radiator and the lower windscreen, plus some barbed wire wrapped around the bumpers. The pulpit was scratchbuilt from plasticard, glued into place. Jewellers silk was stained with ink and used for the rope, and stiffened with liquid superglue.

The figure atop is a double for the St Johns (Margate) Choir Master piece I already had, but wanted to be able to mount/dismount the chap. The idea is the choir of nine can fit in the back. The driver and navigator are both those marvelous Bolt Action/Warlord plastic WW2 Brits which are ripe for such conversion. I’m very happy with the driver, who took a fair while to complete and place, but not so with the navigator who doesn’t look quite right to me.

Expect to see this morale boosting vehicle on a table near me soon. Onward Christian Drivers!

Slow Rider

January 23, 2010

It’s time to destroy another Lledo vehicle in favour of making an armoured car for the BUF with a DIY flavour, something which might have been made in a small independent workshop as a stop-gap until more professionally produced vehicles became available. Of course you can build similar for any of the factions in VBCW, as ultimately it’s all in the paint scheme. As this is for the fascists though I’m thinking quite bland, but armoured to the point of paranoia as well as suffering from very low speed, maneuverability, handling and poor braking. Now a lot of the Lledo vans are similar to this one, the upper body and paint job being the main difference. I’ve cut off the headlamps and saved them, removed one of the ventilation hatches, filed down the destination boards and superglued styrene or plasticard strip around the bottom.

Next I’ve dug out some sample bases which I didn’t end up using for 6mm and glued them along the side. This gives a pleasant look of plate steel butted against plate steel.

I’ve done similar along the top, leaving the forward hatch uncovered for some type of shooting platform and the rear one for possibly a second shooting platform, or perhaps an emergency exit but also for ventilation as it’ll get hot inside from the engine straining to move so much additional weight. With a lighter guage plasticard I’ve filled in the rear. Originally I was going to fit a door on top of the rear section but decided otherwise.

I decided to cut a door, so as to keep a little detail namely the oval rear window. Here the door is a trifle too small.

On the front I’ve added armour to every inch of body, putting bars across the radiator to permit some limited cooling, an access hatch to the engine, a front screen with a drivers port with a drop down hatch, and a smaller one for the co-driver. I made the screen part seperately and added it when finished. There’s a nasty gap at the front corners, which I filled with miliput, allowed to partially dry before shaping a little, and then finished off when totally dry.

Now for a little bit of filling and filing around the inevitable gaps, I found an interesting piece in my scraps box which I’ve used for a simple turret. Now I cut off the original headlights at the start but they look absolutely lost on such a vehicle now, so I’ve utilised adhesive wobbly eyes for the headlamps, but the other way around. They’d work either way, but I thought this suited the period better. These can typically be found in craft shops or haberdashers in small numbers for pennies. Also add rivets with blobs of superglue.

A coat of black paint and the beast is looking ready for action, if it can ever get anywhere in time of course. I did try matt black but it really didn’t help what with the lack of detail.

To the rear I added split doors, which also means you can look through the model and out the front with childish glee. The turret is still lacking a gun and gunner until I can find some loose suitable weapon such as a Vickers Machine gun. The whole thing reminds me of the old Humber Pig, K9 without a head and a cubist Dougal from Magic Roundabout, a singularly charmless mix. However a speedy little conversion and one made much easier if you use precut plastic of a standard size for the bulk of the armour plate. Why not build one today?

I tram what I tram

January 13, 2010

Having developed an interest in VBCW which includes lurking over at the Gentleman’s Wargame Parlour where everyone is frantically developing armies including armouring everyday 30’s vehicles, I thought an armoured tram would make a good start, especially as no one else seems to have realised the beauty of this regular piece of transport with boiler plate rivetted onto it. So I picked up a couple of Lledo “Days Gone By” trams from Ebay and set to work. Now I realise a lot of folk collect diecast vehicles of this type, and like the ones I bought, keep them in the original boxes as part of their collecting fetish. If you are such a collector I strongly advise you don’t read much further, I take these toys out of the box and modify them. However if you’re looking at bashing together some really cheap pieces for 28mm read on.

First it’s time to get rid of the seats on the top deck, which is best done by wiggling one end up and down as seen above.

It’ll soon snap off revealing the metal below. The hole is where the metal pole sits, you know the thing you’d grab if you were boarding, like that on an older London bus. Do this to both ends.

These are the pieces which will come off. The black piece is for keeping, it’s the rod which powers the tram from overhead power lines. The rest is for the scraps box.

That will leave you with this. Now I base 28mm figures on tuppences, and thanks to the gaming gods a tuppence fits this top deck. So I want to put in a new floor, and then I’ll be able to get four figures on this top deck. So the top of the spiral steps and the “nipple” at either end have to go and being cast metal it’s time for some dremel action. Now a fresh cutting disc is too large to fit in, so use one which has seen some cutting and is therefore smaller.

Once you’ve managed that it’s time to put a couple of styrene or plasticard strips in to ensure a level floor. Notice anything different about this picture and the previous one?

In simply handling this model the pop rivet on one side has popped loose. Just as well really as closer inspection reveals how the driver’s cab this end doesn’t sit totally square with the bulk of the model, and in gentley coaxing it back to perfection it’s eventually snapped off. No wonder Lledo collectors don’t take them out of the box! So I’ve taken this opportunity to remove the front bumper, which is also an automatic brake in case someone should fall in front of the tram. However the other bumper, the series of parallel bars forward of the wheels, stays as it’s the auto-brake for items which might derail the tram. For an armoured version the first isn’t really wanted as it would allow the tram to be disabled in game with a stout kick, whereas the latter is rather important.

So what I now have is this collection of pieces, but for the next one I think I might do this to start with as it makes the cutting off of the top of the staircase a lot easier.

So back to the top deck. I’ve cut a planked floor from grooved plasticard and rounded it off to fit neatly, and included a pair of hatches for the top of the staircases.

And then glued it firmly into place with superglue gel.

Next is the plate for the “front” of the tram. Trams typically didn’t have a front, but this one will have a highly armoured front and a not-so-armoured rear. I’ve made measurements and cut a flat piece of plasticard with a slit for the driver, a space for the destination board, and a firing port at the top. Then I’ve wrapped the card around a former and sat it in boiling water so it’ll curve. Remember how a tuppence fits really neatly onto the top deck? I’ve used a pile of them as the former.

This piece has then been glued and clamped into place, once I’d fixed the cab back into place as well as fitted a strut along the railings on either side at the top. This part of the model is now rock solid.

Next is the side plate, which has been measured and had three hatches cut into it.

And the same for the other side, the rear is next, but with more of an easy access to it.

Like this. Here you can see I’ve painted it and applied rivets with blobs of superglue gel. I’ve also put the upright pole back and glued it in.

I’ve added some plates purely because they look right on such a beast. Also set the hatches open to various degrees and glued them into position.

A lick of paint and varnish, as well as replacing the rest of the chassis and the “K6 tram with (patent applied for) Calveley non-spalding armour” is ready for delivery. The additional hatch above the bogies is for the handcrank for the added in-built turntable, but that’s top secret so best I don’t mention it.

The Anglican League proudly take delivery of their latest tool in the fight against the fascists.

Even if the driver has reservations about the safety of the rear cab.