Monday, 2 October 2023
Sunday, 1 October 2023
I took a break from painting today and started some scenario research for the Bag the Hun East Africa project. This far I have identified eight potential scenarios, at least three of which would make interesting games, and I have quite a few more to go. Many of the potential scenarios involve the Gloster Gladiators of No1 Squadron SAAF, including that of Captain 'Piggy' Doyle, pictured above, although I'm aiming to have some variety in the mix. The good thing about all of these is that they only involve a handful of aircraft, so the investment of time and effort is at a minimum.
I set up a little competition for fun on the AK47 Facebook group. The task is to photo your army commander and post the pictures on the group page, so here is my entry, General Mpongo and his bodyguard in all three poses. Long live Mbote!
Saturday, 30 September 2023
I've made some decent progress today on the AK47 professional mercenary unit, with the vehicles almost finished and the S/A infantry bases blocked in. The jeep ended up a right mess, so I will replace it with a landover at a later date. I'm going to try to get the infantry finished tomorrow if I can and also wrap up the AFVs. It reminds me how much I hate painting figures rather than planes and ships!
Friday, 29 September 2023
Thursday, 28 September 2023
One of the other Bag the Hun scenario themes I'm looking at is the air war in East Africa. This has a lot going for it including a wide range of obsolete and not-so-obsolete interwar aircraft, a relatively small model count, some ground attack and bombing missions as well as dogfights, and some excellent source material to dip into. The number of models required means that it could be tackled in 1/285th scale, which has some appeal as a change from tiddly 1/600th scale painting, but there are a few obstacles to deal with too.
The biggest pain in the bum is the availability of some of the more obscure types that were a significant feature of the conflict, most notably the Vickers Wellesley and Caproni Ca.133 in 1/600th scale, although the former is available in 1/285th from Raiden Miniatures and Collectair. This is not too much of a deal breaker, however, as the 3D printing option looks hopeful. So, I'm going to carry on my background research and hope to identify at least six scenarios with enough variety to make them interesting and enjoyable.
Wednesday, 27 September 2023
I thought I might as well include the 1/2400th third rates in my painting schedule for the Napoleonic Royal Navy fleet, so have undercoated them and blocked in the bases in Vallejo Prussian Blue. Here we have six 74's - HMS Ajax, HMS Mars, HMS Thunderer, HMS Goliath and HMS Minotaur - together with an 80 - HMS Foudroyant. I may add a couple more but this will be enough for a game or two, alongside the flagship HMS Glory.
I have had a think and have realized that I'm getting ahead of myself at the moment^, so have to cut back on my four (and counting) projects on the workbench, in order to actually have a chance of finishing some of them. So...for the moment, the 2mm English Civil War One Hour Wargames project has been shelved, ready to pick up at a later date, with the focus now being to finish the AK47 professional unit, to paint the Royal Navy Napoleonic fleet and to start on a test unit for Red Actions! Having said all that, I am itching to paint some more pre-dreadnoughts and 1/3000th WW2 ships for the early war Norwegian campaign, but I will do my best to resist!
(* this happens every year when I get back from my holidays and reality kicks in...why am I surprised!)
Tuesday, 26 September 2023
Monday, 25 September 2023
Sunday, 24 September 2023
|Gallopers' and Trotters|
Saturday, 23 September 2023
I was looking for something else when I found a Peter Pig WW2 British para jeep, so I have modified it to be a patrol vehicle for my AK-47 mercenary unit. This involved replacing the cast on drum fed K gun with a .30 cal, adding a pintle mounted .30 cal. and doing some head grafting from three spare bush hat cavalry figures. I quite like it but it'll be a right pain to paint with all those fiddly bits, nooks and crannies!
A couple of second hand hardback books this weekend, one from the local charity shop and the other from eBay, destined for a potential Bag the Hun scenario writing effort. I actually have six Blenheim IV bombers painted in No14 Squadron markings, so that's a good excuse to do something with them, although I have written a couple of North Africa scenarios before.
Thursday, 21 September 2023
I've had a change of plan for the AK47 mercenary unit with regard to the figures. I was going to use some bareheaded SAS types for this but have switched over to the 'old" bush hat wearing professionals. I have a whole army of these based up for a Colonial Settler set up, so the plan is to start out using a core of bases and vehicles for the mercenaries, then expand to a full settler army later on, using the same paint scheme for the figures and for the British equipment and vehicles. It kills two birds with one stone and will also be a pretty useful force once it's all done
It was chucking down yesterday and I didn't fancy painting after getting soaked walking the dog, so built this old Heller kit of an Aerospatiale SA330 Puma instead. It's destined to be a transport help for my professional mercenary unit but I'm not sure if I'll paint it right away, perhaps leaving it for another rainy day?
Wednesday, 20 September 2023
Tuesday, 19 September 2023
I got home from a long day at work this afternoon and thought I'd unwind with some plastic bashing. This is a very old VEB Plasticart 1/100th scale East German kit of an L-60 Brigadyr STOL light aircraft, very similar in design to the Fiesler Storch. I've had it for years in the kit pile but thought it would be ideal as a lightly armed ground attack COIN aircraft for my AK-47 mercenary unit. The plastic is a bit brittle but, so far it's gone together quite easily. I'll add some gun or rocket pods from the spares box once I've built the model.
Monday, 18 September 2023
It's been a long day at work but the AK-47 mercenary armour is coming along nicely, with a spot of basic highlighting on the sand and green camouflage pattern. I'm actually thinking of adding a couple of unimog trucks to the convoy, so that I can change the unit points value up and down, making it more flexible. It would also allow me to double the number of infantry groups, adding some heavy weapon or RPG bases. It's either that or sone air power in the form of a COIN light aircraft or transport helicopter. I think I just about have the time to squeeze some extras in to the mix?
Sunday, 17 September 2023
|Very Bright Green...|
|..compared to my British APC camo (left)|
|That looks quite good if a little boring|
|Much more colourful|
I've base coated my AK-47 armoured cars and carriers in a sand colour, as it just happened to tick my boxes, but I'm now wondering if I should add some camouflage pattern over the top to make them look less 'deserty'. I painted my Sandbox Skirmish armour in a similar way, using a British mid-green shade, but the AK-47 ones need to be a bit more colourful. I'm thinking of a nice bright reflective green or a very dark brown, similar to the images above, so will have a look at my paint shades to find some options.
Saturday, 16 September 2023
|Professional Mercenary Unit for Hire|
Fellow club gamer Gary has just finished a rather splendid AK-47 army, the aptly named Kenko Rebel Army of Putango (KRAP) so a game of AK-47 is in the pipeline. I'm thinking of using my Zubuto Army of the People (ZAP) for this, as I have a couple of new T-64 tanks to take for a test drive. Either that or the Mbote Defence Force will get wheeled out again. If I have time I may well paint up a new unit, some armoured cars of the Zubuto Internal Police (ZIP) or a hired professional mercenary team for Mbote, but I've already got a lot in the workbench at the moment, so I'll have to squeeze it in. Watch this space for imminent propaganda newsflash reports...
Friday, 15 September 2023
The Royal Navy Inshore squadron is now assembled, undercoated and ready for painting. I've put away the rest of the 1/2400th models to clear the decks and to focus on painting these over the next couple of weeks, alternating with my 15mm RCW AFSR figures and the 2mm ECW armies for a bit of variety. The aim is to complete the frigates, sloops and brigs by the end of the month, given a fair wind and calm seas!
Thursday, 14 September 2023
I've been working away on the test bases for the 2mm English Civil War project, with the grass now painted and the figures blocked in with Vallejo Matt Black. I wasn't sure about the grass effect, which involved Vallejo Bright Olive Green and Lime Green, followed by a wash in Citadel Camo Green Ink, but it's growing on me now. I'll be following the Roundwood method to paint the figures, with perhaps a white basecoat followed by nice bright colours to make the units really stand out.