Monday, September 24, 2012

Ten mil trees - 2

We had a house-hunting session this weekend, and found a couple of promising properties. In between times I was able to finish the N-scale trees for my 10mm gaming...

Horsemen riding by. The Rollesby Roughriders pass a wood during a patrol.

I opted for a wet-brush of acrylic craft paint rather than mess around with spraying them. Varying the amount of dark and light green gives a pleasing variety of shades. Jeff and Jim suggested I use pennies for bases to weigh the trees down, but they proved too small for the job. British 2p pieces would work, but I found thick card and a layer of spackle does the job as well. The green paint I used on the bases looked a bit too bright, but a wash with sepia ink diluted with rubbing alcohol toned them down.

Something I should've mentioned in the how-to post is, these are made from thistle seed heads. Before beginning any work, it's best to put the heads in a bag, close the neck and give them a jolly good shake to dislodge the thin black seeds. Canny modellers can then take these and scatter them in some suitable spot, thus ensuring a supply of raw materials in the future. For those with green inclinations, the flowers attract pollinating insects to the garden too. 

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Ten mil trees - 1

Modelling therapy was the order of the day yesterday. For a while now I've been looking at using teazels for some kind of scenic modelling project. A blog I read recently showed what could be done using them for sci-fi gaming scenery. Plenty of thistles grow along the course of the trail near us, so supply wasn't going to be a problem. I collected a few - using secateurs as the stalks are spiny.

I already had the image in mind for what I wanted to achieve. As it happened everything went according to plan. The hot-glue gun came in handy at this point. 

I took the teazel, snipped off the spiny stalk and replaced it with a "trunk" cut from a thick twig. A quick trim of some of the longer spines at the top was also done. Applying streaks of hot glue through the spines, I stuck on small offcuts of foam rubber packing material left over from my previous hedgerow project. Once the whole surface of the teazel had been covered and the glue set, I gave it a thick coat of ordinary household paint in a fetching shade of brown and heavily sprinkled it with used green tealeaves.

In the space of an hour I made a dozen trees for ten mil gaming. The photos show their current appearance. I intend to give them coats of different shades of green, but I'm debating whether to use rattle cans or use craft acrylics for best effect. The bases are temporary card, which I'll replace with something better and permanent. I'll post more photos of the finished result.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Württemberg 10mil figures

Some more 10mm figures here, again from Pendraken. I have permission from the owner of these figures, Sam Scott, to post the pictures he took of his new Württemberg army. Superb work!

The flag is by Warflags. Sorry, no idea who makes the buildings, but they are nice.
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Following on from the sewer disaster last week, I started making some N-scale trees as a means of taking my mind off the stress we're going through right now. They'll go with my new 10mm AVBCW stuff.

Steps are being taken to deal with the problem, and our plans to move are firming-up. We're looking into moving out of St. Louis altogether. It means a lot of packing and sorting stuff, not least of which is dealing with our contaminated belongings in the basement storage area. I'll post here about hobby fun when I can, but there may well be long gaps.    

Friday, September 14, 2012

The Effluent Society

Everything has ground to a halt due to the sewer backing-up in the basement of our four-apartment block to a depth of several inches. There is fecal matter lying on the floor where people, including a young child with special needs, have to pass. Some of our possessions, including washing machine and dryer have been affected. Some items have been utterly ruined. 

The landlord is inept, and will probably follow his established pattern and attempt to clean up human effluent himself without taking proper precautions, let alone hire professionals to do the task. 

Attempts to get the local authorities involved in ensuring the place is properly cleaned have led to a bureaucratic ring-around-the-roses. No one will take responsibility. Our township has apparently fallen into a black hole as far as jurisdiction is concerned. Private landlords around here could literally have fecal matter floating about their basements waist-deep, and no-one in authority will take notice. Our local Alderman has tried his best, but we're still left in limbo. 

Our desire to move has now become an urgent issue.

I know this isn't wargames or modelling related. Sorry to have bored anyone with this, but I really, really need to let off steam.     

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Gaming interlude.

Not much in the way of gaming or modelling going on at the moment. I'm working on stuff to show at Archon 36 in a month's time. After that, the prospect of a house move looks more likely. In the scant spare time I have, I'm noodling with making some 1/150th scale trees to suit my 10mm figures. 

In the meantime, I'm being horribly tempted to dabble in Napoleonics. Temptation in the shape of this chap's Little Tin Men blog is not helping matters. Go there to see some very nicely done Austrian and French infantry, some equally nice terrain, and a great little game fought to Sharp Practice rules.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Some AVBCW buildings

Here are a couple of buildings I made for the VBCW in 10mm. First up is a blockhouse, built of corrugated iron and field stone, with a plank and turf roof. It can house up to eight fighters, and a machine gun could set up shop on the roof quite comfortably with a few sandbags for protection. 
Next is a typical British semi-detached council house, of the type built in the hundreds of thousands all over the UK from 1920 onwards as part of the "Homes for Heroes" campaign. The program gave employment to troops returning from WW1, boosted the post-war economy and, indeed, provided inexpensive housing for millions.
The lighting wasn't quite right when I took the photo. It looks a great deal more orange than it does in real life. I'll build another one of these days to use as a master- model and cast a few in resin. A few more houses and cottages, a pub and a church to go...

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Can you tell what it is yet?

A small GASLIGHT project I've had on the slipway for quite a few months has finally begun to take proper shape. In the immortal words of Rolf Harris, "Can you tell what it is yet?"


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