Saturday, 19 November 2016

Unmarried Zulu Regiment UmHlanga

I had a few conundrums with this unit. The first one was that when I googled the name I found just about every image was of the Reed Ceremony. Not that I am complaining but its not really what I was looking for (lucky King). The next one was lack of any references as to the likely headdress worn. I thought that I had found some references awhile ago but cannot find now other than Black and White Ostrich Feathers. I had an indication that the shield was white with black spots. Now being an unmarried Regiment I went with black Shield with white spots instead.

Some of you may have heard that we had an Earthquake last week at 12.06 Sunday night.  I got out of bed and sheltered in a doorway and then thought my TV was about to fall off a cabinet if the shaking continued. So I stood leaning against the wall and holding the TV. I was only wearing a Tee shirt so didn't want broken glass on the floor. No damage at all locally but the City has had a few buildings fail but no loss of life. There are major issues down South that will require quite a bit of work to correct plus two deaths. Work has been busy when we are allowed to go into buildings to inspect equipment plus the normal work just carries on.

Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Fish Tank Building

Normally I gaze longingly on other peoples purchases of Fish Tank Terrain as we do not seem to have such a wide selection of items here. The local shops do seem to bring in a few different items from time to time so I keep checking the shelves. So far I have bought a small Japanese type bridge I use in my Vietnam setting and a small ruined gatehouse and wall I started prepping for Frostgrave. I have not touched that for awhile and may paint it instead for Back of Beyond.

Last week I found a nice little Fish shop which is perfectly sized to go into my Vietnam collection. Not sure about the base and sign and not sure if its worth repainting at this stage.

Sunday, 13 November 2016

Drop Cloth

Some weeks ago I bought myself a large piece of Camel coloured Polar Fleece. I was quite happy with the colour in the shop, but when I got it home and looked at it on my paint desk in bright sunlight it looked too garish to me. I next took it out to the games room which is darker and thought that it looked ok. So what would happen when I took it to a convention? was my next concern.

The next sunny weekend I was able to find time to try and dye the cloth to make it a Darker brown. Luckily I had a packet of Dye in my supplies so thought this was going to be easy.

Looks a bit garish

Looks better in Games room

Looking good

Normally this container holds my Pirate ships

It took overnight to dry out properly but when I compared the cloth to an off cut it looked no different to my eye.

So next step was to go and find some paint cans of the right colours.

Waiting a couple of weekends for some dry weather I then I hung the cloth onto the washing line and gave a light spray. (I wonder what the neighbours thought of me doing this and the smell?)

Looks ok to me, but when I reread Ian Knights accounts of the Battle of Isandlawana and Rorkes Drift he mentions that the Movie was filmed in the winter because the weather was more settled, but the battles actually happened when the spring growth of new grass should be quite evident. I think that when we have another dry weekend I will lay the cloth down on the back lawn and spray some Green paint horizontally and let the spray drift down to lightly coat the surface.

Saturday, 29 October 2016

Terrain additions to Future Wars

It may seem that I have been a bit slack on the modelling side but have in fact been quite busy. I've been pottering away at getting a bit of terrain made which means working in my games room at the weekend, which does not really have enough light to work with. I've also had to wait for PVA glue to dry which means leaving items over night to set. Things have been a bit stretched out and have lead me to make a few mistakes, or should I say its been a learning experience?

The first item is a foot bridge made from some bits and pieces I picked up from the railway shop. I made the mistake of undercoating the whole thing in grey undercoat spray. It was later that I thought I'd have trouble painting the handrails which are a weird plastic like rubber material. I then masked the bridge off and undercoated the rails black and then sprayed them dark green.

While I was thinking about how to make some stairs to connect the bridge to the ground I also put together a set of fuel storage containers made out of large biscuit tins. I first tried to glue the open ended cans down onto a piece of cork tile. Unfortunately this only lasted about two minutes of handling. I then hot glued the lids onto a piece of hardboard. I had pre-painted the cans and attached everything. Learning from my previous mistake I also pre-painted the rails. The working platform is made out of cork tile with the top surface from a Dust Tactics walkway glued down. When I moved the tanks into the house to make some details I found that the warm room made the railings warp. They returned to almost straight when they went back into the cold games room but may be a problem in the summer or if I take them to a convention for a Demo game.

Returning to the foot bridge I wanted to add a few details and some lighting. The local Toy shop had a 20% sale on some Siku items so I picked up a set of street lamps. I have used the smaller lamps as the square items are very large. I also made a few details to add to some other buildings and general street fittings. The Fan units were made from some Airfix landing craft propellers in a bit of plastic tubing mounted on a Goblin shield. I only matt sprayed the lamp poles and yellow railings and then painted details on afterwards leaving the original colour as a base.

Getting back to the stairs I made two sets out of cork tile. They were meant to be made as mirror images but I thought that I had cut them wrong (smooth side out) and assembled them the same way. It was only when I brought them into the house that I realised that I had in fact cut them correctly so one is smooth side in and the other smooth side out.

I think that they look alright despite the cock-up.

Added details
I also put together a building from Minibits. It is a touch lower and more Sci-fi than my other buildings but I like it and may get some of the others they make. I did not like the options for the windows so added granny gate painted black and then attached with double sided tape. I'm still thinking of adding some internal details.

While I was painting these small items I also painted up some Petrol cans to attach to my M113's. They are meant to identify the vehicles using binary numbering as I cannot remember which is which until I locate some decals for them.

Sunday, 23 October 2016

A few more Militaria items

This latest batch has cost me hardly anything due to the generosity of some friends and a bit of luck.

This West German Army jacket was owned by a workmate from the Philippines. I can't really believe that he actually wore it as casual wear as its quite heavy and must have been very warm. There are a couple of missing buttons and he removed the labels but is otherwise in very good condition. 
(I cannot  accurately identify the jacket because of the missing labels.)

The last M1 Helmet that I bought was missing the headband. I have managed to buy one quite cheaply in good condition.

This Vietnamese Helmet was given to me by my partners boss. It came from the same American Serviceman whose uniform she had passed onto me. I have no idea if it is five or 25 years old. I suspect that it would be no older than 10.

This M88 style Helmet cover came with the M1 helmet shown above. I have no idea if it is just a paint ballers copy or it is in fact real. I have been following an auction for a real helmet and suspect that I will just buy a plastic imitation one for it as I don't want to spend over $200 for a helmet.

This jacket was on sale online for NZ$29.00.
It was so cheap that I could not resist buying it. 
Good condition but needs a wash.

This British combat pullover (correct name?) I bought a few years ago as I was inspired by Prince Harry to get one. Unfortunately it turned out to be too small for me and would be uncomfortable to wear because of the material and the large velcro patches on the arms. Its been hiding in the spare room but as my collection is getting more international I felt like putting it with the rest of the gear I have collected.

Saturday, 15 October 2016

Zulu Command stands

I have just finished all the command figures that I had in my stock of Zulu figures. Most of the figures are from Black Tree, three are from Empress and two Foundry youths. This may be more figures than I actually need for Black Powder but I am thinking ahead as I hope there will some official AZW rules for Sharp Practice.

I painted these to my usual standard for this Army and then matt varnished them which I did not bother doing on the plastic figures. I then noticed that the wash did not have the same effect on the skin tones. I then put them aside as I really did not want to go back and highlight everything again.
In the meantime I went and looked at Wargaming with Silver Whistle and 28mm Victorian Warfares sites for a bit of inspiration. After looking at these gentlemen's excellent work I decided that I was being lazy. First step I then did was paint a highlight of GW Dryad Bark which was pretty much the same as the base colour. Next day after thinking about it a bit more I added about 20% Dwarf flesh and then had another go at highlighting. I think the figures are now much improved but the effect is very subtle.

Two Isangoma's

Two youths chasing Guinea Fowl

The stands below start with the most Junior Leaders on the smaller bases which increase as the leadership value rises. The costumes also get plainer as they rise.

The Army Commander reminds me of the current King HM Goodwill Zwelithini kaCyprian which was a good enough reason to use him instead of the Empress figure.         

All command stands