Friday, December 31, 2010


Right-o, I think it’s time for an end of year review and a broad plan for 2011. The review is pretty simple: Lots prepped, not much painted!

So I hereby declare that for me, 2011 will be the “Year of Painting and Terrain”. What does that mean? Well, I’ve scratched out a few themes and resolutions.

(1) No more cleaning of figures until the backlog is cleared, with a few exceptions:

  • Assembling, mounting, and priming figures already cleaned in 2010 is ok (need to get them on the painting table)
  • Figures needed to complete a project (e.g. Vietnam), SYW India skirmish, air can be cleaned etc.
  • Terrain is fair game, as it’s the other half of the year’s theme.

(2) Purchasing will be scaled back, I did my piece for the world economy in 2010; in particular, no NEW projects! Well, ok, two new projects may be allowed – 3mm ACW Terrible Sharp Sword, now that it’s released, and 6mm Hammer’s Slammers, IF they ever get released by Old Crow. Otherwise it will be:

  • Terrain purchases will include a space mat, an aerial mat (overland, already have naval), some 10/15mm pieces, 2mm Irregular, and 3mm from Simply 6 (via Picoarmor).
  • 2mm purchases for SYW India, my two fantasy projects (Kull, Imaro), Star Wars, and Land Ironclads.
  • Star Wars capital ships from Studio Bergstrom (falling under the “completing a project” exception).
  • Some more Pulp Figures, particularly if I manage to make the Hot Lead convention in March and PF is there with a booth.
  • If Brigade (US version) has any sales, I’ll pick up some ERB Martian figures and VSF skirmish stuff.
  • If Brigade (UK version) has their summer sale again, I’ll pick up some Aeronef and Land Ironclads stuff – I hope you all admire the way I didn’t spend any money during their Xmas sale.
  • Splintered Light Miniatures have a few sales during the year, and I expect they’ll have some cool new Splintered Lands mini’s I’ll need, plus I have some of their 15mm stuff in the pending pile.
  • In January I expect to put in an order to round up WWII over the Pacific, there are 6 mini-starter packs that will do me, plus some spares for China. And some modern odds and ends. And I found I need another pack of D.XXI’s for the Finns. But THAT’S it.
  • At some point I’d like to place a small order with H&R for 1/300 WWI a/c, I have some gaps in my lineup, and they’re the only ones with a reasonable collection of interesting Interwar a/c.

Hmmm, so that looks like two rules and about 20 exceptions, but at least it’s a plan!

I’ve spent the last few days working on re-jigging my hobby area layout, and added 7 new shelving units to the house – 1 fancy bookcase, 1 utility shelf, 3 pairs of big wall shelves, 2 pairs of little wall shelves. Some of it’s to deal with my book overload, but I also want to get work station #2 back to being a work station, right now it’s a storage area for in-progress terrain. I also waste a lot of time trying to remember where stuff went, because it’s a pain to access much of my collection. This should put things out in the open, in a less jury-rigged fashion. Now hopefully I don’t move come spring…

Hope everyone’s had a good Christmas, and is heading towards a good new year.


Monday, December 20, 2010

Fighter Fleets on Bare Metal Parade

As mentioned, here are some of my fighters, all Studio Bergstrom, after cleaning and mounting. The 1" fighters are on magnets, the fleet scale ones are directly onto pins. The Battlestar Galactica ones are all done, the Star Wars ones are still in progress, besides having a lot more types, the 1" TIE variants and B-Wings require assembly.
The fleet scale alone:
Some plant bases for planetary skirmish gaming, many are Woodlands Scenics DIY's, the rest are various dollar store and pet store plants:

Yay, Happy Birthday to TwoThreeSixMM

I was just checking in for any comments when I realized that it was December 20th of last year that I made my first blog post. Time sure has flown, looking over my month-by-month breakdown for 2010, it was easy to tell when the slow and busy times at work were.

I should have a few more posts this month, later today I'll post a bare-metal shot of my space fighter fleets, and maybe some interplanetary terrain I'm rushing together to try to get in some Star Wars/5150 gaming over the holidays. I finally found a glue that works on aquarium plants!


Friday, December 17, 2010

Pulp Monster Robot

While doing my Xmas shopping for my nephew (only 2 months old, too young to introduce to miniatures...yet), I found in the clearance section a T-700 toy from the last Terminator movie. After hemming and hawing, I decided it would make a good giant Nazi robot for pulp gaming. Here it is, with and without its gun, with the Shadow (from Pulp Figures) for scale:

If not the Nazis, here's another classic story it could fit into: The Spider: Robot Titans of Gotham

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

More from Shapeways

It's hard to tell if I should place the blame on Shapeways, for giving me a one-day 10% off coupon a few weeks ago, or Steelonsand for his recent blog posts about his Battlestar Galactica project. Anyway, now that I've switched to sci-fi mode and have two tables covered with spacehips - fleet scale and fighter scale - I'll post some stuff in revenge.

While searching for new items from the Shapeways/Star Ranger crowd of companies, I found a new shop doing not-Trek stuff:These are the basic Heavy Cruisers of legend, and are pretty sweetly detailed. The "alien heavy cruiser" has already had its basecoat applied, I find it helps somewhat with the slightly roughness of the White/Strong/Flexible material (which is still way cheaper than the other materials). Coincidently, Klingon Armada and Romulan Armada (licenced Starmada variants in the Starfleet Battles Universe) just made their way to the E23 Warehouse for digital ordering, so now I have a game to go with them, although I'll be tweaking the ship stats to bring them more in line with the TV series. The Armadas are set in the General War (SFU)/post-movie (TV) era, and I'd like to scale them back.

And then for my super-VSF project, using Iron Stars, I picked up Objects May Appear's Gothic Space Fortress. It's an expensive bugger, but the discount helped, and it's awesome. I think the Germans are getting it, but I'll see.
And then for Land Ironclads, also part of the VSF-unity, I picked up (from left to right) some self-propelled superguns (going to the French), a monster ironclad, going to the Turks, and well, the gingerbread house from hell. I'm going to make it the largest possible ironclad in the game, all tricked out with options, but of course it'll be stationary, so maybe some sort of battlefield HQ.
So all this madness, and the fact I'm spending so much time prepping and so little painting, has made me consider establishing a theme for 2011 around painting and terrain, and that's it. Only a few essential purchases (mainly terrain), and no more prepping until I've cleared the backlog that's currently prepped, for a year. More on this in a future post, as I establish my rules.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Jealousy Will Get You Nowhere

There's been a lot of blog posts and tutorials etc. about using CD's as bases for terrain and scenics, and I've been trying to collect CD's where and when possible, including making the sad decision that some of my computer games from the early 1990's were never going to get played again. However, even after that cull, I still had less than 20 CD's to get to work on.

But problem solved! During a re-carpeting at work, someone mentioned that during the clean-up to get his office cleared, he'd thrown out a couple of hundred CD's of an old annual report. I immediately raided the garbage, and am now set up for terrain bases for life! Life, I tell you!And I think the storage towers can be used as a scenic in their own right, with a bit of work.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Mars and Spears

So at least this time Mars and spears could have some relationship, but in this instance they actually don't, other than being what I spent a chunk of the weekend on.

On the Mars front, I scored big this weekend at a local used book store. I had most of Edgar Rice Burroughs Mars series already, but was missing 4 novels in the middle of the series. I went to the store on a hunt for a few items, and asked the clerk on hand if I could go through the "Burroughs crate" - some prolific authors get their own box rather than go on the shelves. Going through the crate there were the usual bazillion Tarzan novels, which I read as a kid and still have a bunch of, and some Pellucidar stories I was missing, which was a minor score, and some one-offs that look cool. But no Mars novels and no Venus novels (I was short the first and the last of that series).

However, as I was going to pay, the store owner came back and was there to ring me up, when he saw I'd been through the Burroughs crate, he said he had a new box of Burroughs that he hadn't even inventoried or priced yet, and was I interested? After the polite version of a "hell yeah", I got my mitts on the new arrivals, and found ALL 4 of the Mars novels I was missing, and the last of the Venus series (The Wizard of Venus).

Conveniently enough, I've been prepping some 28mm "not" John Carter of Mars figures, mainly from Parroom Station, but also new arrivals from Tinman Miniatures. Here's a sampling of Parroom's White Ape, Banth, and John Carter, and Tinman's Woola.You can see in the background some of the other stuff I've been prepping - apes on motorcycles, not-Space Marines, pulp figures, and 18C India for skirmishing...

Which brings me to the spears. I have Freikorp's 15mm History of India range on the go for that skirmish project, and the generic spearmen need spears. After some reading on TMP, I tried to make my own with some brass wire (I had florist wire on hand as backup) and I was surprisingly successful, they actually look like spears!As always, the pictures can be clicked to bring up larger versions.