Sunday 28 June 2015

In Her Majesty's Name Steampunk Nautilus

Captain Nemo comes ashore from the Nautilus after a long and demanding voyage of discovery

The Nautilus is from Ironclad Miniatures, the three pounder deck gun from The Honourable Lead Boiler Suit Company, Captain Nemo from Westwind Productions and the pier and jolly boat from Ral Partha.

The Nautilus is in desperate need of a dry-dock refit and a lick o'paint.

Steampunk Armoured Assault Tea Pot

Meridian make a range of Prussian and British steampunk miniatures, their Steam & Aether range.

This is an upcoming model: the armoured assault teapot.

And believe it or not they intend this to be a PRUSSIAN model.


It's British, don't you know. How could an armoured teapot be anything other than British?

I need to lie down - and drink a nice soothing cup of Earl Grey.

Prussian, forsooth.

Saturday 27 June 2015

Bolt Action Poles

I gave my friend Shaun a Bolt Action Polish set for Xmas. I had intended to paint them all but only got the vehicles done. He has added support weapons and cavalry and painted them up to make a nifty force. Expect to see them tackling my Soviets some time soon.

Friday 26 June 2015

Space Rats

I painted a few of these Mantic Space rats and then gave up. My friend Shaun painted the rest.

These will make a nice Antares Army.

Tuesday 23 June 2015

Kent Orchids, Green Winged Orchid

The low-resource Kent chalk downs are perfect for orchids provided they are not mowed regularly. This is one was labelled the green-winged orchid, Anacamptis morio, which is found all over Eurasia. I am pretty certain it's not an orchid but...I was a Zoologist.

IHMN VBCW Steam Tractor

Paid a visit to Hertfordshire the other day and came across this wonderful steam tractor outside the Fighting Cocks Pub

Just the thing for your Very British Civil War or IHMN Army to pull their artillery pieces around.

Saturday 20 June 2015

Review Warlord AMD-35, Bolt Action, VBCW

The AMD-35, also called a Panhard 178, was a highly advanced French 4X4 armoured car designed as a long range reconnaissance vehicle for the mechanised cavalry. It had a decent armament of a 25mm anti-tank gun and a coaxial MG. It also had a properly sized two-man turret with a top hatch.

This is another of Warlord Games new kits. It consists of a resin one-piece hull and one-piece turret. To these you only have to add the following: two metal axles, four wheels, a gun, a back under-plate and a top hatch which may be fixed in the open position.

Detailing is superb and crisp. Look at the rivets, for example.  Flash is pretty well nonexistant. Everything fits and locations are unambiguous. The painted kit easily takes a wash. I used Army Painter Dark Tone with a light anti-shine spray on top.

The decals are also from Warlord.

This is a photo of a real one.

The Germans took over a number of vehicles for anti-partisan use.

As a reconnaissance vehicle it was probably more useful in the turretless version, as in the British use of the Stuart light tank.

My complete collection of French AFVs from Warlord's Bolt Action range.

Highly recommended kit.

Friday 19 June 2015

Review of Warlord Games Renault FT - 17, Bolt Action VBCW

The FT - 17 is one of Warlord's more recent kits and it shows. The attention to detail and crispness of the resin modelling is excellent. Everything fitted unambiguously together using lugs and there was almost no flash to clean up.

The kit consists of four resin sections: hull, turret, and left/right tracks. Added to this are a metal gun: you get a choice of two, the MG or the light canon, and the metal rear unditching plate which comes in two sections.

I painted it in original French colours.

The FT 17 was the first tank to adopt the universal tank layout of engine at rear, tracks to the side, and main gun in a rotating turret on top of the hull. As such it was a milestone.

FT-17s fought in WWI, the Russian Civil War, Polish-Soviet War,  various Chinese conflicts, Spanish Civil War, Winter War, WWII (on the western and eastern fronts), Franco-Thai War, Turkish war of Independence and the 1948 Arab-Israeli War.

It is not out of place in any inter-war campaign including VBCW.

About 2,750 were produced, which prior to WWII was a big production run.

I think I may get another.

Highly recommended.

Thursday 18 June 2015

Broadside Wargame Show, Kent

Last weekend was the Broadsword Wargame Show in Sittingbourne which is run by the Milton Hundred Wargame Club.

You can find out about the Hundred of Milton, as it is usually called, but more properly Middleton, here.

Below are a few photos I took in the couple of hours I had before I had to rush home for the next round of house renovation: which is why my posts have been a bit erratic recently.

A touch of the jolly old Hornblowers here: the seascape really set off the display.

I've forgotten the name of this trader but he had some lovely Dark Age figs.

Ian 'Geronimo' who runs Fenris Games, a business local tome at Chatham Dockyard.

He has some great classical models that he imports. Apparently they are selling faster than he can get more. Take a look at that minotaur, perfect for some of the Osprey skirmish games.

Mi-Go and all things Lovecraftian.


A more traditional game from the chariot era.

Loved this Joker Fairground, the display was showing off the new Batman Game.

Show models are getting bigger. These looked to be around 1/32. Reminds me, I must finish my Berlin terrain and Tiger II.

My wife was very taken with these hand-crafted giant trees.

A closer look at the colonial warfare models.

The Gravesend chaps playing a great Border Reiver game. The hand out had me in stitches.

Finally one of the loopier games undertaken by the Medway Club.

Friday 12 June 2015

40K Imperial Knight

As part of my general clear out connecting with the renovation of my house, I was about to sell this knight.

I really do not have a use for the model but my beautifully painted chaos marine warband on expensive resin stands went for about one quarter new price on ebay,

So on that basis I think I may as well keep it.

Wednesday 10 June 2015

Review Warbase VBCW Crossley Tender

This is Warbase lasercut kit of a Crossley Motors tender from WWI and the interwar period with an Empress driver.

I found this kit much easier to make than the armoured lorry, possibly because I am now used to how they go together, possibly because I read the assembly instructions this time, or maybe because the vehicle is very square, which suits the material.

This is a diecast metal model of the same truck with an Empress civilian driver added.

 The weird headlights on the Warbase kit are actually not a bad likeness.

The two models together.

This is photo of the real thing in the Shuttleworth Collection.

Converters might be interested in this Crossley armoured car at Bovingdon.

Saturday 6 June 2015

Johannes The Putrid and his Undead OldHammer Cavaliers

Johannes The Putrid

May I introduce you to my Undead Hero Johannes of the noble line of Auld'Ammer, although the family now deny it.

He is a classic Old Hammer GW metal model on one of their plastic skeleton steeds and comes with a magical sword.

Standard Bearer

His standard bearer is kitbashed from all sorts of old GW bits and pieces from their Vampire Counts range. He has the advantage of carrying an armed standard.

The Undead Cavaliers

The full army consists of a troop of skeleton lancers, three troops of heavy battle chariots and three regiments of battle chariots as well as Johannes (Revenant King) and his Standard Bearer.

In Kings of War terms, this comes to  995 points.

Johannes, Standard Bearer with an escort troop of Lancers

Battle Chariot Troops

Battle Chariot Regiments

Strategic Withdrawal

A swift advance to the rear after another defeat. Not to worry,  can always raise more dead.

Monday 1 June 2015

Not to Worry, Eh?

Apparently the young lady piloting the hatchback in Germany failed to notice the, ah, Challenger II, when she pulled out. She is a learner.

Let's hope it doesn't put her off driving for life.

Review - Comparison of GW & Mantic Zombies

GW & Mantic (right) Zombie

I recently painted up a Mantic Zombie Regiment and an equivalent Games Workshop unit and thought it might be useful if a put up a comparison.

The figures are about the same height but the GW model is bulkier. Both are plastic kits but the GW is multipose with all sorts of options. The GW is disappointingly sculpted. It has very exaggerated cartoon features with enormous hands and the bits don't fit together too happily.

GW Zombie Regiment

On the plus side one can put together a really chaotic looking regiment with all the GW options but the models seem very crowded on the movement tray because of their bulk.

Mantic Zombie Regiment

The Mantic models are much, much faster to put together and are easy and quick to paint. Speed is not an entirely irrelevant issue when creating zombie hordes. On balance I think they look as good as the GW models, albeit with a very different style.

In terms of cost, the RRP of the GW set is £20.50 for twenty which is a fair price considering all the options available. The Mantic zombies currently weigh in at an RRP of £24.99 for forty or £29.99 if including the metal upgrade parts for the command models. Command models are purely decorative in Kings of War and command zombies strike me as a non sequitur so I don't think they are worth the extra fiver. You may feel differently.

So there we have it. 
Both sets are decent value for money but on balance I recommend the Mantic offering because : (i) they are cheap - two regiments for £25, (ii) they are easy to model, and (iii) I like the look of them.