Life is short, break the rules. Forgive quickly, kiss slowly. Love truly, laugh uncontrollably and never regret anything that makes you smile. - Samuel Longhorne Clemens (Mark Twain)

Thursday, August 20, 2015

A Few more Painting Guides

While I have manage to wean myself off of continually buying new rule sets I seem to be unable to pull that off in regards to painting guides. There is a new painting magazine called "Painting War" being produced by Designs & Edits WxW Co. They are currently producing "Season 1" and have published 4 issues at this point. I think their intent is to publish on a quarterly basis. Issues one and three have focused on WWII while issues two and four have been focused on Napoleonics, so something for two of the more popular periods. They intend to alternate periods until they have completed those periods. There will be issues devoted to other periods as well. Each issue will be feature the techniques of a single painter. I have issue 1; WWII German Army in Campaign and issue 3; WWII Japan & USA Armies on Campaign, the painter featured in issue 1 is Ruben Torregrosa aka "Heresybrush" and issue 3 is Claudia Zuminich. These include guides for both 28mm and 15mm miniatures.

The guides are quite nicely done, not as many in progress pictures as I would like to see but very nice high quality pictures. Colors are listed both by name, number and with a tab of the color. Each step by step indicates the paints used and how they were applied. There are separate sections for 28mm and 15mm showing an definite understanding that the two scales are painted differently. At this point all the colors used are by Vallejo, which is not to surprising. Although I don't think it is a Vallejo publication masquerading as an independent magazine as there is an ad for AK Interactive in there. Hard to say though as its quite possible that Vallejo actually makes the AK Interactive paint products.

I read all the way through Issue 1, and I found it interesting and a worthwhile read. There are plenty of step by step pieces as well as a whole raft of completed figures with full descriptions of paints, techniques, and hints/tips listed in the back. They are definitely expensive though and I'm likely to be very selective about which ones I get rather than just gettting a subscription (these were $28 each!). I received mine, quite promptly I might add, from Brigade Games here in the US.

I would certainly recommend these if the subject matter is of interest to you. For instance while I have both WWII issues at this point I'm not likely to pick up any other WWII issues. In the Napleonic series I would pick up the British issue (which might be Issue 4) and which ever one the Bavarians show up in.

The table of contents for the German Issue. While it shows some AFVs on this page there are no guides to painting AFVs in this issue.

When it says USA armies it means it. It covers both the Army in both theaters as well as the Marines.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Up Scaling Calamity - Upping the Complexity

I decided I was a little tired of putting together rectangular boxes so I decided to try something a bit more complex. I started off with one more small square building and then jumped into one of my corner saloon/hotel designs. In this case I'm envisioning two buildings being converted into the traditional Hollywood look. It also gives this one a very interesting roof line. Might surprise the gunslinger that is expecting a nice flat space to play sniper from. This one took a bit longer to put together but I think it came out just fine. And so the accumulation of buildings continues!

My small building for Round 3. Just keeping things square!

Okay, pieces are cut out, time to try and get it together.

A little rough looking but I think it will get the job done. Especially after a little paint.

And from the back

The corner fortress

And some nice variation from the back. I just grabbed random buildings for these shots

And maybe with an alley on the left side

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Up Scaling Calamity - A Second Round of Buildings

I have discovered that it really doesn't take long to knock these buildings out. I can build about four of them an hour. I think it takes longer to decide which size to experiment with than to actual cut it out and glue it together. I better get busy with that CAD file for the doors and windows. They are looking a little plain right now.

A thin two story building nearing completion here. My steel blocks really come in handy for this work.

This building isn't going anywhere!

The front side, everything is pretty even

Its the variations in length that will really add some character.

Six buildings finished - Front

And the back

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

New Modeling Material

As Dan August suggested and Lasgunpacker correctly identified I managed to get my hands on a sample for foamed PVC. This is definitely an interesting material and after a little internet searching I found a number of sites that recommend the material.

So that let to the search for US sources. Again I managed to find quite a bit in Europe before I finally found some US suppliers. This particular piece came from TAP Plastics and measures about 4" x 4" and 1/8" thick. Its relatively light (heavier than foam core and carvable foams like the blue and pink insulation foam or Damp's favorite green foam) and when I opened the box I admit to being a bit skeptical regardless of what I had found on the web. Still after messing around with it a bit it seems to be living up to its reputation as an excellent material for modeling. Its rigid, but has some flex to it so it should hold up fine to even rough game play. It accepts a pencil line so its easy to draw on. It can be scored easily and with the same tools I would use on wood. It can be embossed and cuts very easily, much easier than styrene. I suspect that it will dull blades pretty quickly though, so I better lay in a good stock of those. Superglue seems to be the best adhesive to hold things together.

The smallest thickness I can get from TAP Plastics is 1/8th" which is fine for use with the both exterior and interior walls. I found some thinner stock measuring 1mm and 2mm in thickness available through a couple of different sources so I can do some fancy detail edinlay work if I want to. I can get 10 sheets of 1/8th thick foamed PVC measuring 11"x 17" for $30 plus $12 shipping. Its actually sign material so you can likely find scraps of it at sign printers as well or from discarded signs. That should appeal to the more frugal among you.

Here are some bad pictures:

Straight from the box

Experimenting with some wood plank and grain detail. Easy enought!

Takes a pencil line without a problem

That was easy to cut. A few strokes down each line and I was good to go

Trying to show the clean edge from the cut. Note that it does leave a ridge like styrene. It sands quite nicely.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Up Scaling Calamity - First Buildings

Broke out the tools tonight and built up the first two little buildings for the scale model of Calamity. Not terribly exciting work but it felt good to be working on the project again. A few pictures from the evening.
Here is the first building. I like the proportions of this one so it might become the "standard" size. Got out the big metal blocks to help hold things together.

This one is set for the roof. I picked out a light tan matte board for this so the tan portion is on the inside. I'm going to paint these and then glue on cut outs of doors and windows.

The pieces for a smaller building. A lot of western buildings were quite small but they still need to be big enough to hold some minis

The big blocks and the little blocks in action.

Side by side. I'll do porches, sidewalks and awnings when I move on to building the board itself. Since Calamity is going to be on a distinct slope there will be quite a bit of foundation work on some of the buildings and it will be easier to add those details later.