Cranking up production in the shipyard!

I’ve been on a Full Thrust kick lately despite not having played in probably 20 years! I’ve picked up a number of collections from Ebay and facebook groups and I’m filling out some areas with orders from Jon at GZG.

So far I have four-ish factions laying around. I have a sizable UNSC fleet almost all built and a I’m testing out a paint scheme, I have an NSL fleet that needs more assembly, A Crusty fleet that needs assembly, and an old school Kr’Vak fleet assembled and on the work bench now plus a new Kra-Vak fleet that is partially assembled and needs more models to flesh it out. I also have a pirate ‘fleet’ but it’s so few ships that I finished half the fleet just working out the paint scheme on four test-ships so its hard to count that as a full fleet.

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Peoples Liberation Army. First Glory War solo campaign.

The First Glory War commences as the Peoples Republic of China lands troops on Glory in a bid to cement their claim on the newly settled garden world. A company worth of light mechanized troops, plus logistical support, lands near what will eventually become the Republic of Arden. The forces were hastily assembled from the 11th Stellar Intervention Division which had just stood down from a seven year long suppression of a rebellion on their colony world Zhuang. Although the war on Glory was short and only included a handfull of major actions it did see the first use of Armored Fighting Suits in the last days of the war.

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Three projects from the back of the shelves.

I’ve been going through my tubs of minis and clearing half finished projects off of shelves. I’m really not interested in moving minis with half a paint job on them, I finished a bunch of my planned painting early this week so I wanted to knock out some quick progress.

I started finishing off a whole bunch of painted 15mm sci fi minis whose’s bases were never painted. I’ve looked into a rules systems called Mech Attack which uses hex basing and infantry on movement bases which lead me to take some 15mm mechs I had put on washers and take them off for rebasing. Unfortunately in the process some paint was stripped off of the feet and needed to be retouched. These Khurasan 15mm mech walkers will be used as infantry support mechs, the smallest mechs I’ll be fielding and probably designed as vehicles in the rules. Mech Attack doesn’t have rules for anything this small so I’ll have to figure something out. I also pulled out two un-built models, so I’ll be doing a video when I assemble and paint them. These are simple walkers with two twin autocannons and a 2 shot anti-tank missile launcher. They’re small and squat and serve as lower tech walkers in my Tomorrows War forces. Khurasan sells these as the Python Power Armour under their Nova Respublik line

Khurasan’s Python Power Armour promo photos.

I learned about Mech Attack from the Chicago Skirmish Wargames blog where they’ve done several write ups of club and convention games they’ve used the rules set for playing in 28mm with some awesome terrain and mechs! Check out their archives here: Chicago Skirmish Wargames

I also pulled out two Combat Wombat grav scout armored cars from the same box. One was finished, but the second had it’s commander bust loose before it could be finished being painted. The vehicle commanders are Brigade Models vaguely Russian troops. I’ve used them as DPRG in Tomorrows War where these scout vehicles are higher tech than their usual equipment and provided by their Earth based sponsors. I’ll be basing them on a hex base and giving it a floating appearance with some brass rod, which has to wait for Litko to open back up. Combat Wombat has unfortunately been out of business for years with the fellow who bought the line refusing to even answer questions about it any more, which is a shame because their turned brass barrels were awesome and a unique product in the 15mm sci-fi scene.

Combat Womabt’s Fennec grav scout car sample photo.

The third project I finished off this week was a set of Warlord Games Higgins Boat gunners. I go these well over a year ago for our D-Day in July game and didn’t get them finished in time for the 2019 game so they sat on the shelf. I don’t know if we’ll be doing a D-Day game this year with the pandemic but I wanted to get them finished and moved off the shelf of shame. I also have a third Higgins Boat to finish painting. It’s tough finding color photos of the drivers and gunners but the ones I found had the life jackets painted in some ‘Army Green’ colors, which is boring. So I went with the yellow life jackets, might not be historical but it does give them some more character and they stand out now.

As far as my 2020 painting goals go I only get to count the 28mm gunners, the others are just retouching so they don’t really count towards my 350, but I have 25 or so GZG 25mm ESU figures based and prime and I’ll start knocking them out next week, so April looks like it’ll be a good month.

I talk about my effort to clear out stalled projects in the my contribution to the Wargaming Recon blog here: Stalled projects, or Oh Shiny! The road to 350.

Stalled projects, or Oh Shiny! The road to 350.

We all have projects we started and then ignored for awhile. My biggest issue is when I put a wash on something and wait for it to dry overnight, only to immediately start on something else and ignore the first project. This is one of the reasons why when I’m painting my D&D monsters and NPCs I stop after the wash and simply seal them. I don’t need to have a top notch paint job on a monster who will hit the table once or twice, so it’s base coat, wash, heavy varnish since it’ll be abused, and shoved in the plastic tubs I keep them in.

Unfortunately wargamers are basically hoarders. Every single wargamer that I know, and role player for that matter, has piles of unfinished projects, rule books and instruction sheets from everything they’ve ever done. 14 pairs of spare arms from a finished box of plastic infantry? Better keep them, you never know when you’ll need 30 left arms that only hold a specific SMG!

Mostly arms… a couple of heads…
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Meager progress for the week of April 19th.

After a couple weeks of good progress I slowed down on chipping away at the lead pile. I finished one single piece that had no paint on it when the week started from my own collection, and a fist full of figures that were half finished and sitting around for two years.

What I did do was almost complete a commission of Germans from a friend. I am a slow commission painter, which is why I only take commissions from friends. This one was a large German army with over 60 figures and half a dozen vehicles and had several pieces added mid commission, but it still took me about 6 months to finish. Clearly not the kind of speed to satisfy a customer I don’t know. I was down to 20 guys when the month started, and I’ve been banging out 6ish a week. The last NCOs are half done right now with just a MMG team left to build and paint and Chris will have a full force to march in front of my Americans.

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Weekly progress for the week of April 12th.

I started of the week with a short list of models to paint. I wanted to start on my Tehnolog Battletech force and paint up some of the Beyond the Gates of Antares Ghar battlesuits, not that I know what to use them for since I don’t play the actual game.

The more I use them the more I like the Army Painter matched primers and paint. They’re not cheap but they speed up my painting progress quite a bit, and these days the time is more important to me. I used the Wolf Grey and decided on a french Caunter camo inspired paint scheme for both the Ghar and the mechs. Painting them together helped get them finished pretty quick, by the time I finished going down the production line with one color the first model was dry and ready for the next.

Primed, camo airbrushed on, ready for the paintbrush!
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Progress for the ACTUAL week of April 5th…

Somehow I can’t read a calendar and labeled last week’s post wrong… THIS week of April 5th saw me shake off the hobby ADD I started the month with. I finished off one project, three test pieces for Blood and Plunder and continues to expand my 6mm forces.

Late last year I bought a large collection of Dreamforge Games Eisenkern soldiers. Half of them were assembled well enough but not even primed, the other half were on sprues still. I gathered a platoons worth of assembled figures, fixing a couple of them or adding bits, and started painting them up in a simple ‘Space Germans’ scheme. I had one squad left, plus the command element, to finish my first platoon. There’s enough figures left to eventually paint up a full three platoon company plus support weapons, powered armor and a battlemech if I want to continue.

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Dollar Store Finds.

Our local Dollar Tree had a couple of toys that I grabbed probably too many of and turned into wargame stuff. I’ve been hunting for a couple more things to use for scratch building some spaceships I’ll probably never actually play with, but this whole lockdown is cramping my style.

I normally don’t have much luck at dollar stores or thrift stores. I see something posted online and go search 14 dollar stores and find nothing. But these two have been consistantly in stock around me and I was able to pick up about a dozen boats and six or eight of the tanks.

The Mecca of cheap wargamers!
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Dealing with a ‘bad’ month. The road to 350.

We all start out our resolutions with gusto and enthusiasm, and then we hit a snag and give up. January was a slow month for me, but I was expecting it with the holidays and all. In February I had hoped to paint several batches of figures, especially since I had already started prepping and painting a platoon of figures with a real simple paint job before the month began. But, alas, ‘stuff’ happened. Sick family members, hospital visits, bad weather for priming, exhaustion. It all combined and I only finished the 26 man platoon.

A Tomorrow’s War US Marine Corps unit out of the Grissom colony on it’s way to Glory.

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Not one step back!

Not one step back! Always forward, for the lead pile! Once I paint a figure I have a rule to never repaint it. I don’t spend time striping figures I finished years ago, or spend weeks painting even a character figure. Once they’re done, they’re done! You know, except for the times I go back and strip figures and repaint them…

So I don’t generally revisit minis. I’ll repair damaged minis, put decals on minis long after I finished painting them, and I have some minis who’s bases were never finished and I’ve had to go back and do those. The lead pile is never small enough that stripping a pile of minis and then repainting them because they’re not perfect is a good option.

Painted two years ago, started basing them this week…
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