Zvezda Siege machines Kit 1 (8014)

If you collect 1/72nd medievals then this set is a must.

The Scorpion

This is useful not only for medievals but also for Ancients, particularly the Romans / Macedonian. Although such devices in this size did exist, the scorpion in the kit is still a big one in 1/72nd scale, and would have been a rarity rather than the norm. It fits alongside 1/72nd figures well but is also useful for 28mm. The kit is a bit more complicated than the Catapult but the instructions are clear and the parts fit together well. One thing that I would recommend…don´t use the bits of plastic meant to represent the rope meant ot wind the device up, but use sewing thread. Not only does it look more realistic but the “plastic” ropes that come with the kit are too short! Two bolts are supplied as ammunition but small balls can be used as these devices were used to launch stone “shot”. One minor complaint. The torsion ropes attached to the arms. Both of them are turned in one direction, namely clockwise (from top to bottom). In a real scorpion they would be wound up in opposing directions.

The onager.

Again, a useful bit of kit for ancients as well as medievals. The kit its self isn’t too complicated, the instructions are clear and it fits together easily. The wheels can be attached as free rolling or if wished simply left off, which was probably more likely when the device was put into position in a siege. The throwing arm can be set at any angle, from vertical (just fired) to horizontal (being loaded or about to be fired ) and everything between. The kit also contains two balls, which are useful to represent stone ammunition. Again, I suggest using thread or thin copper wire to add the tensioning ropes. As with the scorpion, the torsion rope at the bottom end of the throwing arm is incorrect. It is represented as being wound up in one direction along the whole of it´s length. If this was to be replicated in reality the arm would move to the right.

The mantlets.

Three are supplied, are easy to build and a good addition to the set.

Scorpion
Onager
Two of the three mantlets from the set
The Onager manned by the Siege machine crew from Fredericus-rex.

 

The set is available through our utility here.

 

15mm News – Wargames Factory German Later War Company.

Prior to the release of the first set in 28mm for the genre, Wargames Factory released their first set ever done in 15mm, for this popular subject, thanks to the well know game Flames of War.

This is a great new for the 15mm gamers, a new brand is in the market, which always is good. Set includes 84 single part figures plus bases, but bases seems to not be FoW compatibles. Figures looks quite good and they represent a well bunch of weapon including Panzerfaust and Panzerschreck.

Recommended price for the set is $19.95.

The set is available in our utility here.

The question for us is… a set in 15mm, another in 28mm… When the 1/72 scale set ??? !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

28mm News – Wargames Factory

28mm News – Wargames Factory launches their first World War Two set. German Infantry Platoon (Late War)

Good news for 28mm World War Two lovers, Wargames Factory has released their first set for the subject, the German late war Platoon.

Set includes 30 multi part figures + 30 round bases. Arms, heads and weapons are separated. Also some of the equipment is separated, but the way they do it,most of them seems difficult to interchange.

Figures seems to have a quite good quality. Recommended price for them is $19.95.

Set is available in our utility here.

Wargames Factory Viking Huscarls

This Wargames Factory’s set includes parts to built up 32 Viking Huscarls. It comes spread in 12 sprue, 8 for bodies and arms and 8 for weapons and shields. There are axes, spears, swords and even 16 archers are available. Weapons variety is not a problem. Some swords are sheathed to complement figures and you have 12 different heads to choose. A horn per weapon sprue is also included, so some “musician” can be built.

 

Each sprue comes with 4 bodies (body and legs in one piece, so poses are limited), with a quite better detail than their Roman sets, although it’s still improvable. Depend on the way you built up the figures you will get a well spare bunch of pieces, something which i like :).

Poses are a bit an odd, and some special character to make a command group are needed, but figures are good enough to built up a mass troop.
Paint work was easy, base coat, Devlan mud wash (black ones for the metal zones) and the highlight with base colour again.

Figures after wash:

 

One highlight and bases almost finished. Bases worked as always with “Vandall” (pumice stone) and once dried washed with an earth colour or Devlan Mud.

 

All finished:

 

 

Shields with transfers.

 

The set is available through our utility here.

Pegasus Russian BT-7 light tank PG7673 1/72.

Hello all,

This pair of models depicts Russian BT-7 Light tanks that entered service with the Russian army in 1935. It saw action in the Soviet-Japanese board war right up to the end of the second world war. It’s rather more famous successor was the T-34 and we all know a little about that tank!

This tank was armed with a 45mm l46 main gun and normally two 7.62 DT machine guns, and a crew of three.

This set consist’s of two kits of twelve parts each. The parts are some what “robust” due to the fact they made with war gamers in mind, so will stand up to some handling. The turret hatches are separate so can be modelled open or closed. I didn’t have any crew so I went for the lazy option of closing both.

The fit was great on these kits and I built them both in half an hour! I drilled out the exhaust pipes and used a pair of RB model 37mm barrels instead of the ones you get with the kit. I am now trying to use metal barrels on my models if I can get them for the kit I am working on. The certainly add to the model and are worth the investment.

Being lazy I wanted to try out the Humbrol spray cans, to see if it would save time and effort cleaning my airbrush. My photograhy leaves a lot to be desired, because the top tank is sprayed with 30 dark green and the bottom tank was sprayed with 86 olive green. You tell the difference in the flesh but the pictures don’t quite tell the whole story. I also learned not to try it after a few pints of larger. I kept touching up bits and put it on a bit thick in places.

The tracks was painted before they were added and the wheels got a coat of Vallejo panzer aces dark rubber. The only down side to Pegasus kits is the lack of decals. I bought some MiG T-34/KV-1 decals on EBay in a job lot so I thought why not.

The air brush came out for another job so I gave the side’s of the tanks a quick blast to give a more weathered look. Also a good wash with Promodeller dirt wash was applied and the tracks got a final smearing with Tamiya weathering mud stick. It is just like a lip stick and cn give quite a good look if done correctly. Then an attempt at wear and tear by rubbing a pencil lead over the edges to show exposed and wore metal. A final go with Tamiya weathering powder to finish.

 
Pegasus vehicle set are a good option for gamers, their whole range is available through our utility here.

Zvezda Medieval Peasant Army (Set 8059)

The peasants are revolting!!!! (And they smell a bit as well :-D) A very useful set which can be used to cover a wide range of the medieval period. The box art (front) claims them to be for the 13th to 14th (XIII _ XIV) centuries, the back for the 13th to the 15th centuries (XIII – XV) and the insert for the 16th century. All a bit confusing but the set fits well to any of these periods so no real problem. There are twelve main poses and if you use every figure in the set you will get a small army of 42 figures. Of the twelve poses, three are are “command” figures and come on a separate sprue. The “command” group consists of, one figure holding a sword, shield and wearing a cuirass (breastplate) ..all items a rarity among the peasantry so this figure has to be the “Boss”. The next “command” figure holds a burning torch and a Falchion, also a rare weapon for the peasantry but not unlikely. The last figure is one holding a ole..on the end of which a head has been stuck!!! Judging by the heads haircut it looks like it belonged to an upper-class person..most probably a knight

The set contains only one “odd” pose, that of a man running whilst brandishing a cudgel. Whilst the general pose is ok..the fact that he is looking down seems pretty odd.

Flash is very minimal although there is a bit of “spare” plastic in places but this is still a very useful and dynamic set.

All twelve poses that are supplied in the set.
The slinger pose converted to a staff slinger as is the head on a stick pose
The running cudgel man with leg swaps and one of the "advancing with pole-arm" converted to a crossbow man
man with flail (far right) converted to standard bearer and an "arrow catcher"
The archer pose (far right) converted using an arm from the Zvezda english 100yrs war infantry
A few other conversions (I´ve forgotten from which other poses)
A couple of fun conversions (Mules from Atlantic sets)

 
The set is available through out utility here.
 

Willys Jeep, Tamiya 1/48

Although I’m a 1/72 modeller I like to “upgrade” from time to time, and build 1/48 scale models. This allows me to apply some weathering techniques that are difficult to achieve in smaller scales. I wanted to build a Jeep, and since Dragon last offer it is said to be more 1/76 than 1/72, I decided to go for Tamiya. This Jeep is not marketed alone, but in a box full of G.I.s, and is called “WWII US Army Infantry at rest”. It was not the soldiers that I was after, but “the light vehicle” inside.

The Jeep is very easy to assemble, like most of Tamiya vehicles. Still, it doesn’t have an engine (like its counterpart from Hasegawa). For extra-detailing I bought Hauler’s photo-etched set, but you can build a beautiful and accurate model straight out of the box.

The only thing I scratched were the gear levers and knobs, as the ones from the kit were too thick. After the assembly, I sprayed a few layers of Olive Drab from Vallejo Model Air. Before the decals I applied a coat of gloss varnish.

After sealing the decals with flat varnish, I started the weathering process, from the top to the bottom. I used mainly oil colours, as I find them very easy to work with. For the areas with more dust, and simply added more white paint to the mix. I applied the undiluted colour in small dots, and then, with a larger brush soaked in solvent, I brushed it on the surface.

In conclusion, I had a lot of fun building this kit. Very easy to assemble; and, besides the Jeep, you receive a lot of other “goodies” in the box: soldiers, weapons, barrels, fuel cans and various luggage items. Highly recommended!

8265 HAT WWII American Tank Riders

 

My latest collaboration: Hät’s WWII American Tank Riders.

Set haves 4 equal sprue, with 9 soldiers and 2 (tank) drivers each. One of the soldiers have a bazooka and other a heavy machine gun. There is also a man carrying munition for the bazooka and one officer wearing binoculars. All the figures are one part, except one, which haves an option for an arm, wearing an automatic or semi-automatic weapon.

The sprue comes in a soft green plastic, but they almost haven’t mould lines neither flash, detail is better than many other Hät’s sets and they have been a pleasure to paint, so i hope this brand will be giving us good surprises in future, although they must change the plastic by a harder one some day.

The figure with the arm option will need some putty to seal the join.

Here there are the figs before to paint work. Due to the soft plastic the best work to put them ready to paint isn’t work with a drill, just heat a needle and then pin the figure by the rear zone 🙂

Blackened zones are due the “needle” technique to remove the mould lines, also based in hot a needle and pass them over the mould line, but be careful, a too hot needle could damage the figure, so try it before in a sprue part to get the feeling. Then figures have been primed with Chaos Black spray by form Citadel.

Right top stand up figure isn’t from this set. It’s an Italeri ones.

Figure paint is quite basic, based in the base colour – wash – highlight technique.

Helmets and Bazooka: Olive Drab -889 Vallejo Model Color.

Jacket: U.S. Green – 893 Vallejo Model Color.

Trousers and helmet’s straps: A 1:1 nix of Scorched Brown/Graveyard Earth Citadel

Straps: Khaki Brown- 988 Vallejo Model Color.

Boots, Leather jacket (tank drivers) and weapons’ wooden: 50/50 Scorched Brown/bestial Brown (Citadel). Jacket have been highlighted using some red.

Flesh: Tallarn Flesh Citadel.

Once dried, a wash with Devlan Mud have been applied. A highlight with original base colours is recommended to clear the result.

A useful and nice set which you can find here..

 

Zvezda WWII German Paratroops 6136 1/72

Hello all,

I swore I would never fall for the Zvezda con of 4 figures for £3 but I have! So far there are not really one great set of Fallschirmjäger, all have various problems like missing magazines, size issues to barrels being pointed into the ground (I still love that old ESCI set though).

This set contains four multi part figures that fit well together that only requires a little filler. No flash to speak of and hardly any mould lines to combat. It is such a shame that this isn’t a larger set and no signs of expanding it.

It comes with a larger base or movement tray as I think it is called in the war gaming world, or these individual bases. The best thing for me is the fact that they come not attached to any base’s because the normal Zvezda plastic is Farley hard to remove and I fear for me fingers with that blade!

The figures appear to be from the early half of the war which makes a change from the late Normandy/Italian campaigns. I decided to try and steer away from the Luftwaffe blue which always spark the argument that they never jumped in it and used the more traditional field grey trousers and helmet. I can see their point about camouflage but the other side is the blue does look good.

I want to try and paint some figures from the Operation “Mercury” Crete landings. Out came the Osprey men-at-arms book which is always a good fall back when some one moans about the wrong colour shoelaces or whatever, you just say I copied straight from the book!

I started by painting the jump smock a light grey with a light wash of Vallejo grey green. Then the helmet and trousers a field grey colour. Then looking at the book it showed them with sand coloured helmets so out came the Iraqi sand. I was hoping to get away without painting camo smocks but they do look better with a splash of colour. I could not resist at least one bit of Luftwaffe blue to creep in so one helmet got the treatment.

The base’s are already built for these blokes and are primed ready to be painted, so in time they will be peering around corners wait for the defenders of Crete to return fire. All in all I would say the Zvezda figure sets are getting better the the first offering.

The set is available through our Ebay utility here.

 

HAT 8180 Gardner Gun.

Here I bring you the latest work that I have done. It’s the 8180 HAT Miniatures reference that brings us a set dedicated to the British colonial wars. This set shows a Gardner gun of the Royal Navy which could be installed both on a ship and on land.

The Set includes four of these guns with support for ships or wheels to be used on the ground. It comes with two gunners, an officer, and three sailors with rifle. Likewise, it also includes three additional heads wearing the typical sailor hat, if you want to represent them by shooting from a boat.

The material of which it is made is the typical HAT soft plastic to which we are accustomed, which has given me more than one problem, taking me even having to replace and remodel parts in the assembly. Modelling in the Canyon is decent, but the soldiers is nothing short of horrible especially in the faces and the sables. It exasperate me so much that I decided to paint them as they were, rather than lose a big amount of time in remodelling the non-existent faces, good luck for us, with the hats they are hardly visible.

Paint (Base colour):

Hat / edge of the scarf / pants: white.

Jackets: Dark blue.

Wood rifle and boots: brown

Barrel guns and pistol: Boltgun Metal.

Skin: Tallarn Flesh.

To paint them has been simple, just I have applied the base colour over black primer colour, then I applied a layer of Devlam Mud and after drying, I applied a light with the same tone of the base colour. The figure does not deserve more effort, because although it is a good acquisition for the cheap and the quantity, the quality offered does not give satisfaction in the painted.

I recommend you to change wheel and barrel joints by metal bolts.

Even so, if you want to form a Colonial army is a good acquisition which you can buy here.

RedBox Gangsters (72036)

RedBox sometimes gets a bit of bad press for it´s sculpting but not from me. They come out with some pretty original ranges and subject matter, and this set (along with the “sister” Policemen and citizens) is no exception. My only complaint about the set is the flash. Virtually every figure had some flash and a couple were virtually “buried” in it. Still, with a fine scalpel and a bit of time this is quickly dealt with and the figures appear in a much better light. They may be a bit stumpy in thiestatures but this gives them a sort of ulp / Comic book style which is IMHO a real attraction of this set. The clothing is all okay, not 100% historically correct but the impression of 1930´s – 40´s gangsters, molls and Heavies is well represented.

The cars are Dinky / Matchbox and from my own collection aquired from fleamarkets / bootsales. Some of them are re-painted along the lines of the Henry Ford´s saying “You can have it any color you like, as long as it’s black.”

Bugsy and the boys
Bonnie and Clyde
A Moll and Street Thugs
A new one on me...Knuckle dusters in 1/72nd scale!
Machinegun kelly and friend

 

Set is available through our Ebay utility