Monday, 31 December 2012

2012 A Review

It is common practice at this time of year to revisit your Blogging year with a short review detailing notable posts or articles. This is such a post.

I'll start with something that I call The Pledge, an attempt by me to reduce my lead mountain and paint some miniatures. The Pledge was my own variation of The Lead Adventure Painters League which posts a new group of painted miniatures each week during the contest period. I have the goal of a group a month rather than one a week. A series of On-Line builds that has seen Joccian Ratmen, Todoroni  and even giant Gingerbread men finished and based.

I am fully aware that the initial aim has not been fully met, but I am pleased with the finished and painted miniature groups and see this as a great step forward for me.

I have also had a number of Masterclass Articles published on Barking Irons Online as well as two terrain articled published in Miniature Wargames. All this in addition to the on-going work on my own terrain building book 'Building Wargame Terrain' which is moving along well and expected to be published in the first half of 2013.

The later On-Line Builds featured on this Blog include a new Game called S.P.Q.Orc published by Maveryc Games, a game similar to Flintloque - in fact written by Max Coxhead, one of the driving forces behind the original Flintloque game that features heavily on this Blog and a game system that I enjoy collecting, painting and writing for.

2012 also saw a couple of large commissions - which although finished and completed, they are still to be officially launched and therefore I am not able to talk about them (yet). I have enjoyed these modelling interludes which offer me some serious modelling challenges.

I also renewed my acquaintance with SALUTE, my first visit to this iconic show since it was held at Kensington. It was a long and tiring day, but one that still lives long in the memory. I believe that the best, or more accurately the most enjoyable show was Scale Model World - the IPMS show at Telford in November. I also attended Games Expo - Birmingham and the Allumwell Show, two shows that as well as being local to me are great modelling and gaming shows. Two of the friendliest shows I know of.

Late in 2012, I finally got around to joining The Society of Fantasy and Science Fiction Wargamers (SFSFW) and earlier this month took delivery of my first ever Ragnarok as a member, even though I have previously written for the magazine and have many old issues in my collection.

So where do I go in 2013?

I am going to continue with The Pledge - setting myself the challenge to produce at least ten groups of painted miniatures during the year. The 'How to build Wargame Terrain' book will need some finalizing work before publication, but I am confident that it will be completed in the first six months of 2013. I will post details once I have them.

I have been asked to attend SALUTE 2013, but am still to make a decision as to whether I will attend - it is a very long day out and as I usually work weekends - a days holiday!  I will be visiting Alumwell and more-than-likely Games Expo, so keep an eye out for the grey Dampfpanzerwagon T-shirt!

I intend continuing with my gaming and scenario writing as featured in this years Orcs in the Webbe Advent Calendar 2012 where I had four such articles. This is something I enjoy almost as much as building terrain and painting model soldiers.

So there you have it - a short (actually not so short) review and look forward to next year.

2012 has seen this Blog reach its fourth anniversary, with 978 post (not including this one), 347 followers and a regular view total of over 9000 hits a month or 260,000 hits since I installed a counter - in May 2008.

Thank you to all who post comments - they are greatly appreciated and very, very welcome.

Happy New Year.


Friday, 28 December 2012

S.P.Q.ORC - Pax Bochemannica

S.P.Q.ORC - Pax Bochemannica is now available to order (and with a Paypal option). Go to this link for full details.

I have yet to order my boxed set. I've been waiting for the Paypal option to become available. I'll be ordering in the next couple of days, just as soon as my new Christmas present - a brand new computer, is fully installed.

Good luck to Mac and Dave, I hope that this new venture is a runaway success. It deserves to be.

Details can be found here.


Gerry Anderson passes

Earlier this evening I read of the death of Gerry Anderson, the creator of such TV greats as Thunderbirds and Captain Scarlet (to name but a few).

These were prescribed watching for me when I was a lad and the thought that yet another icon of my miss-spent youth has passed away has left me feeling a little down.

Rest in Peace and thank you for some fantastic memories.


Monday, 24 December 2012

Build Something Contest on LAF - a further update

Construction is now finished - over 50 separate pieces have been used, mostly scratch-built to build this entry. I had stated that I would not show images of the finished piece until the contest was up and running, but couldn't resist posting this image. "Can you tell what it is yet?"

The standard of entries so far is truly epic. Check them out here. My entry is small, just 110 mm x 80mm and 60mm tall but is something that I have wanted to build for some time. Now it is time to start painting.

I enjoy these contests as they prompt me to build something, something that I might otherwise have left on the drawing board. This small scenic base will be part of my Flintloque collection - particularly a Bog Orc terrain piece - Those Bog Orcs are always up to something!

Further updates may come - but then again, I might wait until the contest start date - sometime in January 2013.

Merry Christmas


Thursday, 20 December 2012


Regular readers and followers of this Blog will know that earlier this year I joined The Society of Fantasy and Science Fiction Wargamers (SFSFW). I have been a regular purchaser of the societies magazine Ragnarok, and even had an article published, but had never joined as a full member.

All this changed when I read some comments on the Flintloque inspired Yahoo site - The Notables, (see this link for more details). Then yesterday I received my first issue of Ragnarok as a member - issue 59 for Winter 2012 through the post.

I will admit that I was a little disappointed - as I read it all from cover to cover in one evening - I would have liked it to have been bigger, with more pages, more articles, more images, but those that were included were great fun to read and have already given me a great deal of inspiration and ideas for future games.

Of note were two articles that I thought were very well written and full of intriguing scenario ideas. the first was Aftermath, written by Alan Patterson and covers a multi-player Fantasy game that takes place immediately after a huge battle. The tailored race or objective orders were very well written and I feel would lead to a very good interactive game. The Barbarian orders of Follow Ox (Ox being a giant), were particularly intriguing.

The second article called Fall of the Goblin Empire was the winning entry from a SFSFW contest and was written by Mark Caldwell. The rules set Goblin against Goblin but with a twist - The battles took place as aerial engagements, Balloons, Dragons, Gliders, Rockets etc. I can think of nothing more haphazard than a Goblin in a flying machine, a guarantee of fun and chaos. I thought the nine pages of rules were simple, but effective and great fun to read - for example each race was given different states of mind - the Halflings had three, they are Smokin, Drinkin, Sleepin, well done Mark.

Other articles covered Star Trek, Aeronef, Kill Zone and Traveller as well as a Every World Needs a Hero (Superhero gaming) and a look at the works of Cordwainer Smith.

Steve Bleese (editor for a third time) has a plea on page one - asking for additional members and articles, are you up for it? Can you join or supply content? Details of how to join SFSFW can be found here.


Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Build Something Contest on LAF - an update

The small terrain piece is moving along - this image shows the modified barrel, a Grand Manner resin casting that has been hollowed-out. I used a 3mm drill in my Dremel and then a boring bit to give the impression of an open barrel. The barrel is mounted on to a plastic card wooden pallet.

Here are some of the 'clutter' pieces that will be added to the finished piece. They come from a variety of manufacturers with most being modified in some way.

Finally for this post - something I have not used. Can you guess what it is yet?

Details of this contest can be found here and my first post here. Stay tuned for more updates.


Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Look what I've won!

Upon checking my e-mails yesterday afternoon, I read that I am the very lucky winner of a bench mounted air vent - The Exagon R.

The competition was easy - just show us your Workspace. For details go to this post.

I will write a full review once I have it fitted-up. For some time my Wife has been saying that I need some sort of vent in the-shed-at-the-bottom-of-the-garden, Father Christmas has come early for me.

Thanks to Bench Vent for the prize. For further details go to this link


Update 19th December 2012
The Bench vent arrived this afternoon. It took just 10 minutes to fit it together and then plug it in for a test run. It is quite a machine and I look forward to giving it a proper test later this month.

Saturday, 15 December 2012

A Quartet of Goblins. Another Advent Calendar On-Line Build

Day 13 of the 2012 Advent Calendar from Orcs in the Webbe and another On-Line Build written by me, a second group of Goblins.....

A Quartet of Al-Garvey Goblin Cacadores. For full details of the tutorial/article go to this link.  For details of the earlier Goblin Painting Masterclass go to this link.

The Goblins were originally painted up for a planned Barking Irons/Orcs in the Webbe article by Craig Andrews to link with the re-release of The Bridge on the River Que, this image shows all 12 Goblin Cacadores in a scenic setting scouting alongside the River Duo.

It would be boastful to say that this Advent Calendar is the best so far (having four articles in this years advent), however this really has been a great Advent, and still twelve days to go. Thank you Craig.


Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Fine Sand for modelling

I recently found this small ornament in a local Charity Shop, a Glass Bell filled with coloured sand. I use this fine sand to texture models, mixing it with either Acrylic Medium or uPVA glue and painting it over plain plastic card or card. You can also mix it-in with Polyfilla to add some surface texture.

The Glass Bell cost just 99p and after breaking the glue seal at the top of the bell I was able to remove all of the fine sand.  The sand has the texture or consistency of fine salt or caster sugar.

The sand has been spread out on to a piece of plain paper to show the fine grains. The lumps will disappear when shaken.

You do not need much when modelling as I also mix it with coarser grained sand. This small plastic container will last for ages.

It is possible to buy a similar product used by children to make coloured sand pictures, you apply the sand over a thin layer of craft glue. However this source is much cheaper.


Monday, 10 December 2012

Freddy's back!

Day ten of this years Advent Calendar sees the return of Foul-Mouth Freddy in his longest adventure yet. The Great Kartoffenburg Mash-up.  For full details go to Orcs in the Webbe day ten or direct to Foul-Mouth_Freddy and The Kartoffenburg Mash-up.

The original short story grew to over 15,000 words and is now officially a Novella! Join Freddy and the Gang as they try to bring some order to the Kartoffenburg Expeditionary Force or KEF one of the biggest C**k-ups in  the history of Albion.

Sit back and enjoy what was originally intended as a piece of traditionally published Flintloque fiction; Maybe one day our 'potty-mouthed' hero will make it into ****ing print!


It may interest readers to note that the finished story was intended to be split into three sections, three days, but with Uncle Rogipoos last story - "The Catnip of Fu Cat Choo" both Craig and I thought that it was worth cramming it behind just one Advent Calendar window. I hope you agree.

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Build Something Contest on LAF

Lead Adventure Forum are running a Build Something Contest this festive period, for full details go to this link.  The theme is WATER.

My entry is small - something I have wanted to do for some time. Can you guess what it is yet? The base is just 110 mm x 80mm.

The rules state that I can post images of work-in-progress, but in my opinion this detracts from the final entry, however I can tease you! The terrain piece will be Flintloque themed - actually Bog Orc themed and will include water in the title - well Aqua anyway.....

.....still not sure if the entry will be allowed, but as I have wanted to model it for some time, I'm OK with it either way.

The main base is 3mm thick plastic card, while the stone paving is 3mm thick Balsa Foam carved into individual stone slabs with a scalpel (still to be textured).

Don't expect loads of images until I am able to post photos of the finished and painted piece, but for now the construction is well advanced.


Friday, 7 December 2012

The Goblins of Al-Garvey another Advent Calendar On-Line Build

Day seven of this years Advent Calendar from Orcs in the Webbe is this tutorial showing how I painted up a batch of long-forgotten Goblin Cacadores from Alternative Armies. The eight miniatures had laid unloved and collecting dust on my 'too-do' shelf for some time and an e-bay auction pushed me into finishing them. To read more go to this link.

The 21012 Advent is already one week old and has been full of inspirational articles. I hope that you enjoy this one.


Thursday, 6 December 2012


I have recently been commissioned to build a master model which required many, many rivets. I would usually slice plastic rod, but this project would be cast in resin and the rivets would have to be perfect.

I have this Hinchcliffe/Historex plastic card riveter or hole punch which I have used many times before, but with the number of small plastic rivets I would need for this model I built this simple jig.

Photo One - The Historex Hole Punch as you purchase it.

Photo Two - The jig, the base (an MDF miniature base), and the plastic card jig which was built from 3mm thick Plastic card and superglued in place.

Photo Three - The jig and hole punch in use.

Photo Four - A plastic or resin rocker arm which I use as a hammer. It is strong enough to hammer in the metal punch and hard enough not to show any marks, without being too heavy.

Photo Five - The finished rivets.

When I use the hole punch I use the rod that is one size smaller than the hole I am using in the die. I find that it can be worked quicker (and easier) if this is done.

I hope this helps other with their hole punch.


Monday, 3 December 2012

The painting of Charlie Grey

Yesterdays post The Legend of Charlie Grey showed a simply painted Orc Marine miniature. I thought I would show some work-in-progress shots of the figure.

There was some Green Stuff re-sculpting of the standard mini. I have rebased the figure on to s 2p coin and built up the groundwork with Milliput.

The finished Orc Redcoat was painted over a Dark Grey base and highlighted with Stonewall Grey from Vallejo, then highlighted again with Stonewall Grey and Skull White.

When the main figure was finished, I washed the whole mini with some Green Wash from Citadel and then picked out the flesh areas and the white cross belts with pure Skull White. The tongue is pale pink and the eyes Blood Red.

The base is painted in my usual colours with a basecoat of Snakebite Leather.


Sunday, 2 December 2012

Orcs in the Webbe Advent Calendar 2012 - The Legend of Charlie Grey

Day two of this years Advent Calendar from Orcs in the Webbe and a story by yours truly called The Legend of Charlie Grey. A young Orc of Albion proudly serves his country in this life and the next.....

Charlie Grey is based on a very close friend of my fathers who was a larger-than-life character and a frequent visitor to our house in my youth.

The miniature was painted some time ago and I developed the short story based on the painted mini and Charlie Grey.


Saturday, 1 December 2012

Orcs in the Webbe Advent Calendar 2012

Once again Craig Andrews of Orcs in the Webbe has produced an Advent Calendar of articles, scenarios and gaming comment. Day one written by Matthew Hartley and called I Fought the Lore can be found here.

Each day up to the 24th of December there will be another article - the 24 days of Advent. Keep checking back for more festive cheer. There may even be one written by me!

Previous Advent Calendars for 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and now 2012 can be found here.