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Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Keepin' It Snappy...

Hi, All!

Wutha-F'Kahwi dinosaur cavalry. Finished!

Just a short one this week. (ooh-err, missus!)

Sadly, my creative output this week has been somewhat curtailed, derailed, distracted and crippled by the brutal onslaught of some lovely weather and a convenient pub...

The finished unit, unpainted. At this stage, things looked pretty sketchy.

Nonetheless, I battled through and completed the dinosaur riders I started last week - which is a result, at least.

As you will recall, I set myself the challenge of taking some prety awful plastic dinosaurs and making them look good in a short space of time. Here are the results...

The unit leader, unpainted. I gave him a rifle in the end - he started with a spear.

What a fearsome fellow!
Standard bearer, unpainted.

The finished standard bearer.

The keen-eyed and pedantic amongst you will doubtless have noticed that I completely forgot to add girths and martingales to these fellows - a mistake which eluded me until I was well into painting them. "Bugger!" I quite accurately stated, "Oh well, these felows are probably used to living dangerously - they're riding bleedin' dinosaurs for Pete's sake!"

So I carried on regardless.

Warrior #3, unpainted.

Warrior #3. Finished. I love the contrast of blue and yellow on this one.

Warrior #4, unpainted. This one was a challenge - he's riding the most ridiculous looking dinosaur in my opinion. Rather like a big duck.

Warrior #4 finished. Not a bad result. I couldn't do much about the flash lines on some of these creatures - I would have ended up carving huge chunks out of their legs!

Warrior #5, unpainted.

Warrior #5 finished. There's a great feeling of movement to this one.

You might also notice that each mount bears a different colour for their livery, something like that of feudal knights. I wanted to make this a very bright and flamboyant unit and I think I have achieved this.

As with my warlord of a couple of posts-ago, I added feathers from GW High Elves to the livery. These have been painted in identical colours to bind the unit together, as have the riders' very simple clothes.

Not a bad little unit of beasties, if I say so myself!

Next up for theWutha-F'Kahwi forces: A Shaman...

It'll be interesting to see how this fellow develops. Right now, I haven't got a clue!
Anyway, that's that for this week. More soon!

Wutha-F'Kahwi cavalry prepare to charge...


All the Best!

Monday, 22 October 2012

Shocking Developments

Hi, All!

British Shock Troopers move into the streets of Ah-Pul-Sh'Napps...

Well, it's time for a new post and I've finished a few more bits and pieces...

First up: Her Royal Britannic Majesty's Armoured Shock Troops.

Sergeant Major Abbot, armed with Magna-Lectric Gatling Rifle.

I featured the beginnings of these in my last post. They were a very simple conversion and really easy to paint. I'm happy to have completed them quickly, as my pile of ideas seems to be growing a a frightening rate at the moment. I seem unable to just finish stuff without starting new stuff!

The full squad. The troopers are armed with Magna-Lectric Shock Rifles.

Anyway, here they are in all their glory. I went for a small unit of five men initially, as I figured they might be rather too powerful for fair gaming in larger groups. We'll see. I have enough bits and bobs to create about twenty of these, should I so desire!

Next: The Wutha-F'Kahwi Riflemen

Wutha-F'Kahwi rifles take up positions on the high ground...

This is the first unit of my natives to be completed. They also featured in my last post and were very quick to finish, using my usual inking techniques.

The finished unit in close-up. Orange and green will be featured strongly throughout the army.
Notorious warrior Ranseed B'tah leads the riflemen...

I figured that a native force facing Europeans with technology ought to be given a fair chance, so I will be featuring plenty of rifles and archers, along with more dangerous units to balance things out a bit, rather than simply charging steam-powered tanks and walkers with hundeds of semi-naked, spear-wielding religious zealots...

Wutha-F'Kahwi rifles, alongside the mighty warlord Guzz-Lin-L'aga and his fearsome mount Bé-Bé-Chamm.

And speaking of dangerous units...

Really crap toy dinosaurs, glued to washers...

I set myself a little challenge yesterday. As readers of this blog will know, I have on a couple of occasions picked up interesting looking toys and declared, "This should be a nice, easy and quick little conversion..." Many days and hundreds of rivets later, such creations as the Bazelgette Light-Armoured Perambulatory Contrivance and the Hydrothermicopters emerged. (Yes - I know the second Hydrothermicopter isn't done yet...)

The transition begins: Brass-foil blankets are smoothed into place and a saddle (and rider's legs) are constructed.

So when I happened upon a bag of the cheapest, nastiest dinosaur toys I had seen in ages, I said to myself, "This could be a challenge - make 'em look good, and do it quickly!"

The saddle and rider are fixed up with greenstuff. I also added a larger washer. Coz I can.

A nearly-finished model. Feathers are from GW High Elves. A bridle has been added using greenstuff.

Needless to say, I had been very happy with my warlord on his dinosaur mount, and the idea of having a unit of dino-cavalry was very tempting. But I didn't want to spend a lot this time around and decent dinosaur models can be very costly. So We shall see what the end result is in not-so-much time, I hope.

The five dino-riders in various stages of completion. The standard-bearer is finished and ready to paint. Reins were made from brass foil.

What you see here has all taken shape very quickly indeed - probably around three hours' work. The models are simple but should look pretty good when painted. Using brass foil was a great way to save time and I'm confident that I won't be disappointed with the final result.

Another group shot. Because eye-candy isn't bad for your teeth.

On a final note this week, I would like to apologise in advance to those of you who wish to post comments, as I have had to reinstate the bloody annoying encrypted text identification thingummy. I was getting bombarded with up to fifteen SPAM comments a day... I just hope this doesn't put you off leaving your comments - I love receiving them and really appreciate your thoughts...

So that's it for this week. By next week, I plan to have finished the dino-riders, maybe do a bit more on the Flunks and Lord Blandford-Fly's Lancers, possibly figure out what on earth I want to do with the second Hydrothermicopter, probably do some more Wutha-F'Kahwi warriors and continue with my designs for Lord Smudgington Smythely-Smythe's Hydraulicly Motorvated Sextupedal Land Traversing Vacational Domicile...

Keep watching, Folks!

Lord Smudgington Smythely-Smythe and the Shock Troopers take a moment to pose heroically...

All the Best!

Monday, 15 October 2012

A Great Many Things.

Hi, All!

Mighty Warlord Guzz-Lin-L'Aga and The Dreaded Bé-Bé-Chamm...

It's been a week of bits and pieces here at Casa Del O'Truth...

Much of my time has been taken up with the dinosaur-riding chieftain I featured in my last post, so I am pleased finally to introduce you all to... The Mighty Warlord Guzz-Lin-L'aga, with his fearsome mount, The Dreaded Bé-Bé-Chamm.

Holes are drilled into the dinosaur's head and pins glued in place.

After my last post, I added a bridle and reins to the model, for which I used some copper loop pins I found in the jewelery section of Spotlight, a feather from GW High Elves, greenstuff, and brass foil from a tube of tomato puree...

Greenstuff bridle is added, along with a feather for decoration.
Tiny reins are cut from brass foil...
...and carefully glued into place.

Then it was on with the painting...

The finished model, undercoated, washed and highlighted. Now it's ready for colour.

As is usual for me, this model was coloured almost entirely with inks, following a 3-stage undercoat process. The only paints I used (other than on the base) were gold and silver metallics. I'm happy with the result...

The finished model, ready to lead the charge...

I can also report that the Wutha-F'Kahwi tribesmen are coming along, llikewise coloured with inks...

Simple ink washes are fast and effective.

Next, I turned my attention to a couple of silly ideas that I had in the back of my mind: The customisation of a somewhat pompous gent from Reaper Miniatures and the creation of some VSF Shocktroops using Warlord Games plastic brits, System Troopers from Pig Iron and various bits and bobs...

Warning... Smoking guns can be bad for your health...

This fabulous fellow started life with a cigar in his hand. "Hmmm..." thunk I, "One really ought not to promote smoking on one's blog-thingummy. Much better if he's holding a gigantic gun..." And so it came to pass...

The finished model...

The gun is part of a U.S. anti-aircraft gun from Flames of War. I added a plastic press-stud, bits of plastic tubing, the stock from a plastic rifle and some guitar string to finish it off. I also added a System-Trooper backpack and made straps from greenstuff. A quick paintjob later, and Ladies and Gentlemen, I present... Lord Smudgington Smythely-Smythe and his Mk III Magna-Lectric De-Fleshulising Porta-Cannon! (lovingly known as 'Ethel'.)

Lord Smudgington Smythely-Smythe... Splendid Chap, don'cha know?

Alongside the creation of Lord Smudgington Smythely Smythe, I was also working on Her Majesty's Shock-Infantry...

A squad of five will be plenty for now, I think...

These were very quick to produce but I expect good results. Like Lord Smudginton Smythely Smythe, they will have guitar-string conduits when done...

Sergeant in the early stages of colouring...
Trooper, armed with Electro-Rifle.

The Sergeant is armed with a Gatling-type weapon, while his men carry electro-rifles. I have no idea how much use these fellow will get, being so advanced, but I felt like making them anyway.

So that's what's been going on. Obviously, I haven't forgotten the Flunks, the Lancers or the second Hydrothermicopter... I think I may be busy for a while... Also, I am ready to embark upon my NEW BIG PROJECT... Keep reading, folks...

But First: A big THANK YOU! to MonkeyLite for sending me his interpretation of one of my pics. Mr Monkeylite commented after my last post that the pic in question reminded him of the cover of a 1920s Pulp Magazine... So he made one! I am flattered, Sir! And it's great, don't you think?

Thank you, Monkeylite!

OK - So... "What's this 'ere NEW BIG PROJECT thingummy you've been blathering on about, Colonel?" I hear you cry...

Well, calm down and have a biscuit. You're far too excitable.

The main reason I rushed ahead with the creation of Lord Smudgington Smythely-Smythe today was that I wished to announce my latest concept, which has been commissioned by the aforementioned pompously posturing Peer...

Namely:

Pages from my sketchbook. You can probably tell a lot about me...

Lord Smudgington Smythely-Smythe's Hydraulicly Motorvated Sextupedal Land-Traversing Vacational Domicile... (yes, folks - it's a mobile home on legs...)

One criticism I received concerning HMSW Gargantua was that she is too big to be of much use for wargaming. And indeed, this may be true to some degree. So, I started thinking... What if I built a walker so big that the model itself became the gaming table?!


HMSW Gargantua... Too big? Or not big enough...?

...after I had stopped shaking and whimpering, I started sketching. What you see here is the early concept. I won't give away too much at this stage, but suffice it to say that this thing will be massive! Big enough, at least, to be the setting for assaults, sieges and fisticuffs of a skirmish type-nature.

I hope I haven't bitten off more than I can chew this time...

Construction will start soon and I expect it will take the best part of a year to complete. I'd like to have the model finished in time for next year's Call To Arms convention in Wellington. Obviously, I will be posting updates as the model grows, and I will be continuing my work on other projects at the same time... Please send medication and charitable contributions to my nurse...

So that's that, foilks! More soon...

Lord Smudgington Smythely-Smythe... Intrepid explorer, entrepreneur and alcoholic.

All the Best!

Monday, 8 October 2012

Those Magnificent Men...

Hi, All!

Mk I Hydrothermicopter... Airborne at last!

Well, here we go again - another day, another post...

The crew, having been disarmed...

I am happy to announce that the first Hydrothermicopter is finished! As predicted, the cockpit detailing and crew were a little fiddly, but I'm happy with the results.

The painted pilot and his seat are added to the cockpit and a 'desk' is constructed around him.

The first stage was to attach the bodies and heads of the crewmen to the upholstered chairs I made from greenstuff and plastic, and to paint them. Arms could not be added at this stage, as I intended to build controls around the pilot and his arms would get in the way. They would have to be added later. I find it helpful during such work not to think of man and machine as separate, but rather as all part of one model.

Control panel tops the desk, then arms are added. I also put a steering column in the pilot's hand.

The steering column the pilot is holding was something of an improvisation. The cramped nature of the cockpit, due to my wanting a gunner in the front made it very hard to get the pilot's hands to look like they were manipulating the controls that were very close to his chest. As a result, he is leaning forward in something of an 'action' pose, gripping a long control rod and steadying himself with his other hand.

Gunner is added. A plain flat panel hides his incomplete body from view.

The gunner was much simpler. All I had to do was add upper arms and obscure most of him beneath a flat panel, as if he is hunkered down, right in the nose of the vehicle. His chair fits comfortably beside the pilot's control rod.

From above...

...and the side...

Final Rivet Count... 254! 

 Now I just have to do the other one...

Meanwhile, as work continues on the second Hydrothermicopter, the Flunks, Scagworms, Lord Blandford-Fly's Lancers and plans for a BIG project, I thought I'd also get cracking on the Eternally Lost Tribe of Wutha-F'Kahwi...

Wutha-F'Kahwi warriors in the making...

My models of choice for these notorious warriors are plastic Mahdists from Perry Miniatures. I didn't want to do the Zulu-thing and these seemed just perfect as an alternative. I have two boxes - which will make around eighty warriors, depending on how many I mutilate for other purposes - and I suspect I may need many more.


A tribesman of note leads the warband...

I thought I'd start with a ten-man warband, armed with rifles. Clearly, some nefarious character has been arming the natives with European weaponry...

Rifles?! By what devious devices did these savage killers come by such things...?

I also dug out of my Big Box O' Bits a plastic T-Rex I had previously converted to be ridden by a 1:72 scale plastic knight many years ago. It wasn't a very good job at the time, but now I have a more noble purpose in mind...

Customised Chieftain and somewhat battered T-Rex...

So began the construction of a Chieftain, mounted on his terrifying steed.

Left: straps and barding are added. Right: bits of plastic rod and strip provide the framework for the saddle.

I had to cut a large amount of gunk and glue from the T-Rex to begin, as well as remodelling the rider's legs and abdomen. Next, cloth barding, straps, blanket and an elaborate saddle were gradually added.

The saddle is sculpted from greenstuff.

Once the rider was in place (I intend to paint this as one whole model, rather than paint the mount and rider separately) I thought about extra details. A shield, quiver of spears and scabbarded sword were added. I still have to add reins.

The almost completed model. Spears are plastic rod with spear tips from the Mahdist warriors sprues. Pennant on the lance and jewel on the quiver are from GW High Elves.


A shield hangs from straps attached under the saddle.


I quite like the orange colour of the T-Rex, although I didn't do a good job of the tiger stripes. I'm not sure what colour I will go for in the end. I also intend to produce Wutha-F'Kahwi archers, spearmen and of course the crews for the Flunks. This may take some time...

Oh well. that's it for this post...

A Hydrothermicopter rushes to aid Lord Blandford-Fly, suddenly beset by a bad case of Scagworms...

All the Best!