Tuesday, 19 June 2018

What a Tanker! Mark IV's Camouflaged

As you can see, I've started the base coat of white camo paint on the Plastic Soldier Company Pzkpfw IV's over the last couple of days, squeezing in the time around work and family stuff. I'm really tired at the moment but have a day off coming up later in the week, so plan to get a lot more done and possibly even finish the rest of the German tanks by the end of the weekend. The idea with the Mark IV's is to replicate the washed out camouflage effect on the profile picture, which I think should look pretty good if I get it right?

Sunday, 17 June 2018

What a Tanker! Winter River Bridges

Ironically enough, despite it being Father's Day, I have had very little time for my own hobby pursuits today, especially as the other half decided it would be a good idea to completely empty and reorganise the garage. However, I have built, painted and weathered a very nice bridge for my winter terrain collection, using a well designed and inexpensive lasercut mdf kit from Supreme Littleness Designs

This is 28mm and was originally destined for the Wild West but it is now being re-purposed as a 20mm bridge somewhere on the Eastern Front. I also painted up a plastic pontoon bridge thing that came from an old Hasegawa or Fujimi field accessories set that I had in the loft, for use as an alterntive river crossing. In What a Tanker! only light tanks can cross wooden bridges but I'm going to bend the rules so that medium tanks can also use them, otherwise they are a bit pointless!

Saturday, 16 June 2018

Gaslands Auto Combat Terrain

I had forgotten about Gaslands until I spotted these card print and play accessories on Wargames Vault this morning, some of which were on special half price discount. I've downloaded the three sets of terrain designed for Hotwheels scale gaming, together with a couple of the scaleable sci-fi pieces including a control tower and cargo containers. All very useful as structures to crash into, drive over or otherwise blow up!

Unfortunately my printer isn't up to the job, so I'll have to wait to get these printed on card at the local printing shop, which may not happen for a while. This lot set me back about seven quid, which is pretty good considering that I can now print off as many terrain pieces as I want and in numerous different schemes. It will also save me ages scratch building the same bits and pieces out of plastic card and scrap stuff.

New Wargaming Table!

My wife was kind enough to buy me a brand new foldable 5' x 10' wargaming table, which can be split into two halves for skirmish gaming or pushed together for really big battles. It's in a nice shade of blue for naval and air wargames, although someone has decided to paint a white line down the middle, which spoils the overall effect a bit. I suppose it's for deployment zones, which would be quite useful when you want to avoid those awkward disagreements about just how far from the table edge you can set up your units? The boys were even kind enough to set it up for me on the patio and they are now testing it using some ping pong balls (not sure what that's all about?)

Friday, 15 June 2018

Tiger, Tiger

I have found another of the Italeri Tiger I fast build kits for a very good price, so will be able to add a couple more at some point to the late war German Panzerwaffe. It's a shame that the kit has the later steel road wheels, as the earlier version with rubber tyres would have been more useful, especially for 1943. The two I've already done are in snow camouflage but I quite like the idea of doing these two in a summer camouflage pattern, similar to the examples from the back of the box. I have some time this weekend to crack on with the panzers on the workbench, so I'm hoping to get them almost finished by the end, which will then allow me to build those mid-war Russian tanks I've been wanting to tackle!

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

T-34 In Action

I'm still slowly working my way through Tankmen by Robert Kershaw but thought this looked interesting, especially as it is based on interviews with Red Army veterans. I actually have relatively few books on this sort of thing, at least compared to my air warfare and naval warfare library, so it should be a useful resource. As usual, it's a digital copy, which means that I can read it on holiday in a few weeks time rather than lugging a hefty book about, although I do prefer a good old hardback!

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Italeri 'Fast Assembly' T34/76 m42

I have just opened this kit from Italeri, which contains two of their 'Fast Assembly' T34/76 m42 medium tanks, together with some excellent decals designed for wargaming unit building. I really like this range of kits, even though they are more expensive than the Armourfast alternative, as the models are a bit more detailed and are supplied with top quality decal sheets that more than make up for the marginal extra cost.

I also like the fact that the tracks on these models feature the non-solid road wheels and have the upper tracks with a bit of realistic sag, in the same style as the even more expensive Pegasus kits. I can now add some early war tanks to the KV-1 and KV-2 that I have in the kit pile, although I do quite like the idea of getting another of the Italeri T34 kits to make up a unit of four? I have no idea when I'll get round to this but the kits are so simple they'll be very quick to build when I do!

Monday, 11 June 2018

Mexican Expedition US Army Dodge Cars

I got hold of some very cheap, roughly 20mm diecast vans that I thought I could convert into something a bit like Dodge Touring Cars, as used by the US Army on the Mexican Punitive Expedition in 1916. I've successfully dismantled one and used a Dremel cutting disc to lop off the back end, following by some heavy duty filing to remove the van sides.

It's not anywhere near finished as I will now need to build a passenger back seat and rear body out of plastic card, then convert the canopy to fit over the top, but it's not a bad start? I don't actually need any for the Patton's First Fight scenario but they would look good parked on the table as scenic features and could have all sorts of uses in other scenarios.

Sunday, 10 June 2018

What a Tanker! Panzers Marsch

I have had a packed weekend but, at the end of it, have managed to assemble three Plastic Soldier Company Panzer IV H, an Armourfast StuH 42 and a second up-detailed Armourfast Panther, to add to my existing German tank collection. I was hoping to build at least one more Stug IV but I've run out of time so it will have to wait. I've base coated all of them in Halfords Ultra Matt Khaki and have now also soaked them in my usual Future and Gryphon Sepia ink wash, ready for winter camouflaging at some point over the week. 

I can't say I really enjoyed assembling either the Panzer IVs or the StuH 42, as in both cases the instructions weren't great and there were quite a lot of fiddly bits to do, but they came out looking alright in the end. I've heard that the tread head rivet counters are upset about the split cupola hatch on the PSC Mark IV but, to be honest, I'm not really bothered! I've also now nearly run out of stowage for the next lot of tanks, so have ordered some more in both small and large sizes from The Scene (he does some really neat 15mm stowage packs including various tarps and rolls):

Friday, 8 June 2018

What a Tanker! Trees


I've neglected the terrain part of the What a Tanker! project, so really need to get something sorted if I'm to actually play some decent looking games. I have used the Woodlands Scenics plastic tree armatures for 28mm cowboy gunfight games and for AK47 terrain markers before, so I had a couple of packs half used in the scenery spares box. I've found them and will base them up on washers for a bit more stability, texture in the bases and then spray them in Humbrol Ultra Matt brown, with some wintery dry brushing to blend them into the snow terrain cloth that I am using. I also now have some Blotz mdf lasercut building kits to assemble, so all I now need is a bridge and some modular road sections to be scratch build.


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