Tuesday, May 24, 2011

SS-Schütze primercoat

Hey All!

Had some time to look over the box of EW SS German Infantry from Battlefront's  GE791 SS Panzergrenadier Platoon and picked out a rifleman to start the show. These are a pretty good-looking bunch of Nazis, uniforms and equipment are accurate and sharply detailed. These sculpts suffer the same bobble-headed, somewhat ogre-ish features - but - I like it!
I plan to paint up a single figure to get the plane-tree scheme down. Sure makes it easier to start again in case the painting looks like crap! You only gotta clean up an entire platoon once to learn this lesson! ...been...done...

Clean-up the figure by removing all flash lines and gluing it down to a roofing nail or some such to avoid handling. Wash in water/dishsoap to remove mold-release agents. I started by priming in white, cheap, spray paint - not primer - as it is too thick. Use a VERY thin coat and examine your mini once done to see if you missed any areas or left any flash. The primer will help you see these missed areas and you may have to lightly reprime once done. Once done, I put into the oven for 15 minutes at 170C (lowest setting on her stove) to dry and cure.

(nice goal Kevin Bieksa!)

Worked ahead to see how this will look - will post a step by step later...your thoughts on the pattern?



Monday, May 23, 2011

Vallejo Color Chart

Hey All!

Let me begin by saying that Vallejo paints are excellent. Great bottle design, good coverage even when thinned and pretty durable, when dry, for acrylics. The Model Color line performs poorly in the airbrush but this was not their intended use.

A couple things on my mind as I begin to experiment with some colors for my early Waffen-SS camo "plane Tree".

First, whats up with the Vallejo websites Model Color reference charts??


They are very far off from actual colors of the contents - I mean really off (check out German Field Grey 830!) I don't know if this is intentional or just bad webwork. Its basically worthless when trying to find a particular shade.

Second, their suggested colors for German camo patterns are not very good either.


They suggest 891 Intermediate Green for the light color in Plane Tree and Oak Leaf but it is too dark for any scale. Their base color of Beige Brown 875 is close but is not quite maroon enough.

Enough bitchin'. Here is what I have found on my own but this may change when I start painting. The Plane tree pattern has 4 distinct colors but for our purposes (15mm) we are only concerned with three: base, dark and light green.

"Plane Tree" early pattern smock (spring side):

Maroon Base color: 1 x drop of Beige Brown 875 with a smidge of German Cam Pale Brown 825.
(as it is lighter, the suggested color of 875 could be ok on its own - stay tuned...)

Dark Green color: German Cam. Dark Green 979
(Could be darker, add a smidge of black)

Light Green color: 1 x drop Golden Olive 857 with a smidge of white.
(smidge = dip into with a tiny brush or somewhere in that area!)

I will edit this post with some pictures as try out these on an actual mini.

Edit: Here is a finished figure using the colors above:



Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Winter Russians.

Hey All!

Working on Winter Battlefront Russians (SU720 Strelkovy Platoon Winter) to mix in with the MW Stalingrad squads. One issue with most of these figures is that they lack much of a torso. From the hips to the shoulder is skewed quite a bit. I imagine this is due to Battlefront trying to keep its Infantry to scale with its vehicles but if they made the bases a bit thinner, it would give them more to work with. There are a few figures that are so short as to be almost unusable.
 The newer LW British figures seem to have corrected this issue that affects many of their earlier figures. Too bad they didn't continue this trend with their latest early war kits...don't get me started...
Anyway, this blister contains a great variety of figures - some armed with PPSH's, most with rifles. There are some good poses and a bunch of cool Officer figures as well.

 Overall, these are great figures. They have well detailed equipment and weapons and the 'Shinel' Russian greatcoat is well molded. Faces are typical of their early blisters; somewhat orgerlike with immense paws but reasonably easy to paint. I'm getting so used to this style that the FiB figures seem wierd to me even though they are better proportioned.

I used Vallejo Field Drab 873 to paint the coats to represent the M35 version with the overall brown color. Earlier versions seem to be brownish grey and some officer examples are even a Field Grey! I imagine this may have problematic to say the least!

Painted these up over two days. Could have been substantially quicker if I had left the Red Orchastra (and porn) alone...Damn you internet! I don't know if I will ever be a 'mass production' painter...I think I spend waaaaayy too much time per figure but such is my style. I look at work from fellow painters (like Tomwize - from FOW forum fame - my god that guy can produce!...must not have an unlimited internet connection...) and I am humbled. What I paint in a week, he does in a day...oh well...



Monday, May 9, 2011

Finished Russian MMGs and Platoon HQs

Hey All!

I finshed all the basing on the 4 x MMGs and the 4 x Platoon HQs (based for Schwere Kompanie rules). Added a few knick-knacks  for interest; dropped German helmet, barrel, ammo case lids etc. Pretty happy how they turned out and will carry this basing on to the SMG and Rifle squads that I am currently painting.

I think these will look good on my Stalingrad board (...when I get around to it!) but my German Grenadiers may clash a bit with their grassy bases. Thats the trouble with specific terrain, they look out of place when used on other terrain types - kinda wishing I had done the Germans in the same style...I guess I'll do the balance of them like these when I complete my German MMGs/Mortars and Assault and Pionere Squads.

A big thank-you! goes out to Crac des Chevaliers at http://cracdeschevaliers.blogspot.com/ who nominated my blog for the Stylish Blogger Award. I really wish I had more time to 'pretty up' this page to the level of some of the greats out there!

One thing I love about the Blogger.com, so far no limits on pics or size! I dunno what the catch is but it will truly suck when it hits! I have exceeded my bandwidth on Photobucket and used up all 100MB at Telus (my web service provider) so this is by far the best way to post pic I have found. I think I'm gonna post another pic right now...



Thursday, May 5, 2011

More Stalingrad and Plastic?

Hey All.

Added some loose bricks made from foam to the Stalingrad bases. I cut them out of a 2mm thick craft foam sheet and painted them a red-brick color. I will probably scatter a few on all the Russian bases to add some interest. I think these will be stricly rubble based with little or no vegetation. Took a bit of advice and dusted up the figures a bit more.

 The gunner on the left base is a FiB figure with the helmet shaved down to a more historic shape. Actually pleased how he turned out. Some of the issues I had with the FiB figures fade a bit onced based - still dislike their versions of the German/Russian helmet though...

On another note, I have been reading all the talk about Plastics and the like on the BF site...

...and on a fellow blogger Tanner's site at http://wwiicentral.blogspot.com/
a great blog by the way...

The discussion reminded me  of my initial dissappointment with 15mm vehicles offered by all the manufactures out there.  Their products have continued to amaze me only in price. Coming from 6mm, I was shocked at how expensive 15mm are! All 15's are cartoonish at best and have become my chosen scale with a fair bit of reservations.  I LOVE DETAIL! and I LOVE ACCURACY! Most kits out there have little of either...

I have always felt that the plastic minis would be more prone to damage over the years than lead-based minis and I still think this holds true for soldiers and the like but vehicles is another thing altogether (broken resin fenders anyone?).

Looking at the T-34's and KV's on Tanner's site made by 'The Plastic Soldier Company' (theres an original moniker!)  http://theplasticsoldiercompany.co.uk/ - leaves me thinking that it is time that other manufactures took notice. 
 The detail on these minis makes existing stuff look like it was made from play dough. The lines are sharp, circles are round, squares are square, there are no issues with massive flash or irregular shapes. I may pick up a few vehicle minis when they flesh out their product line.