Sunday, October 31, 2010

15mm Humvee and Technical Gunners

I've been working on my 15mm Mogadishu project and became frustrated that there were no good gunner figures out there. I also wanted them to be able to swival to face any direction to properly represent the action. After some experimentation, I finally figured out a good way to make movable gunners for both my Humvees and my Somali technicals. Thought I would do a little blog writeup on how I went about it.

Humvee gunners:
First of all I am using QRF Humvee's. I'm sure this method won't work for all 15mm humvee's but it will work for any humvees with a the top hatch molded as an open round hole.

Step 1: Build Humvee
Step 2: Find a dowel slightly smaller than the gunners hatch hole for your humvee\
Step 3: Use green stuff to make a flat surface inside the humvee: I did this by putting a small ball of greenstuff on the end of the dowel and inserting it thorugh the top of the humvee and pressing down. you want this to be level and ready to act as a good base for your gunner.
Step 4: Cut pireces of your dowel that when sitting in the top of the humvee will be flush with the humvee top.
Step 5: Attach gunner torso to dowel piece

Making gunners: Here are the piec4es I used to make my gunners. Obviously, you can use what you like.
50 Cal Gunners - Old Glory Tank Commander torso manning 50 cal, Peter Pig modern Head with goggles
Mk 19 Gunner - Same as above I just customized the 50 to look like a MK 19
M240/M60 - Peter Pig Vietnam helicopter crew gunner, Peter Pig modern Head with Goggles

Humvee Gunners

Humvee Gunners 1

Humvee Gunners Removed

Humvee Gunners 2

Gunner Facing Away

50 Cal Gunner

Humvee Gunner Closeup

Gunner Detail

Somali Technical Gunners:
For the Somali's I wanted the same sort of thing but obviously couldn't use the dowel trick since the gunners are exposed in the back of pickups, land rovers, or jeeps.

Instead I decided to use rare earth magnets. These I countersank into the vehicle models now I just needed a way to build a gunner so that he could attach to the magnet.

I once again went back to the Old Glory US Tank Commander figure manning the 50 Cal. I removed the head of this figure and added a head and legs from some Peter Pig Crew figures. The legs I used were from the mortar crewman holding his ears since they were close together and in a standing position. This gave me a standing gunner firing a 50 cal machine gun.

I then removed the post from the bottom of the machine gun and replaced it with a cut off nail of the appropriate length. Done right this has the gunner figure standing on the head ot the nail with the shaft of the nail now acting as the machine gun mount.

The head of the nail is perfect for attachment to the rare earth magnet and allows the gunners to be removed and or pivoted in whatever direction you like. Although all of my gunners currently have the 50 cal I will be turning some of them into DSHK machine guns by customizing the 50 cals.


Technicals 1

Technicals 2

3 Technicals with gunners

Technicals 3

Technicals Gunners removed

Technical Gunners removed

Gunner Detail
I left the nail on this gunner unpainted so that you could see how it was positioned.

Technical Gunner detail

I may try something similar to this for recoiless rifles and other light vehicle weapons.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

My 15mm Barbarians

It took me a couple days but I finally got pictures of my Barbarians. I say Barbarians because I use these as Gauls, Early Germans, and Celts. I am currently in the process of painting up Dacian Falxmen and Sarmatian Cataphracts so that I can press them into service as the bulk of those armies as well. I know there are differences in shields and dress between all of these armies but the living with the inconsistancies is a nice tradeoff from having to paint or acquire several hundred more figures.
As with my Romans I acquired most of these figures over the course of the past few years. Mostly off of E-bay but I also got a few from Hind's Figures LTD, Dragon painting service, and George Knapp when he was at a KC con a few years ago. All of them have since been rebased, touched up (Some alot more than others), and inked to my liking.
I have quite a few more skirmishers (particularly for the Celts) but I was running out of room on the table so I left them off.
This army will be hitting the table, along with their foes the Romans, at Fields of Honor - Spring the weekend of March 27th in Des Moines, IA as well as Sunday at Little Wars at the end of April. If you are in attendance you can check them out in person or better yet command some of them.

Gallic Army

Angled View of Gauls


Warband Closeup

Skirmishers and Elite Warband

More Skirmishers

Gallic Cavalry

Cavalry and Light Horse

Chariots and Light Horse

Thanks for taking a look. I'll be posting some more stuff soon. I'm going to try to have something new out here every week or so.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

My 15mm Roman Legions

I've recently finished my 2 15mm Roman legions that I began to collect about 4 years ago. Many of the figures I bought already painted off e-bay from seller Bobbn867. He sells 15mm figs in lots of 48 foot. I collected these figures over time buying 1 or 2 lots whenever I had the money. During the same period I also bought several pre-painted collections of "Barbarians" Celts, Germans, Gauls, off of E-bay from various sellers. I sort of just packed them away, worked on other projects and waited for the day when I would have enough to do a couple of large armies.

About 9 months ago I finally decided to get them out, Base them to my standards and pretty up the paint jobs. Most of the figs got small touch ups, shield rims painted, and an inkwash. I based them for DBM/DBA on metal bases and then created magnetic trays to group them for rulesets such as Impetus, Vis Bellica, Armati and FOG.

I also had to paint all of the light troops and the commanders from bare metal. So far they have only seen a handful of battles but they will be seeing the tabletop at Fields of Honor in Des Moines, IA on the weekend of March 27th, if you are in the area stop by and help push them around the table.

I'll be posting pics of my Barbarians in the near future.

2 Legions Ready for review

Legions with Marching Camp

A Closer View

From the Other Direction

Reviewing the Troops

Cohort up close

Archers, Cavalry, and Psiloi

Scorpions, Cavalry, & Psiloi

Marching Camp

(Tents by Baueda)

Monday, January 25, 2010

28mm Gladiator Arena

Well after several months of not putting anything out here I finally got my camera squared away and decided to get back at it.

I've uploaded some pictures of my 28mm Gladiator Arena and thought I would give a little tutorial on how to build one.

I decided to focus on the arena itself and too ignore the crowd. I really only cared about the gaming area itself and didn't want alot of scenery to get in the way of playing. I wanted the arena to be easily portable. I also had already written my rules and did not need hexes. However, I will address adding hexes below in the instructions in case you want to use them.

The design I eventually settled on was a box with the arena inset into it, sort of like a drawer. By adding a handle to one side I made it easy to carry just like a suitcase.

Materials needed:

  • 4 pieces of bass wood (24" x 3" x 3/8")

  • 2 pieces of masonite (24" x 24" x 1/8")

  • 16 small wooden blocks

  • Enough sheets of palstruct stone effects to create the walls

  • 4 HO scale model railroad tunnel entrances

  • 1 pack of O scale plastic "Wrought Iron" fencing

  • Small pack of 3/4" long screws

  • White Glue

  • Fine Model Railroad Ballast (For Sand on arena floor) or

  • Tan Hex mat for arena floor

To start off determine the size of the arena you want to create. With a 2 x 2 box I went with a 22" diameter circle. Scribe this size circle (Centered) on both of the pieces of masonite. Cut the circle out of the piece of masonite that will be on the top.

Cut two of the pieces of basswood down by 3/4 of an inch. This will allow you to assemble the four pieces of basswood into a frame that will act as the sides of the arena box. Now attach the 2 pieces of masonite to each side of the basswood frame. Make sure the scribed circle on the bottom piece is facing into the box (Toward the top of the box). This inner scribed circle will allow you to position the 16 support blocks along the outer edges of the circle. These will act as support for the Plastruct rock walls. Make sure that you do not position any of these in spaces where you want to put your arena entrances.

I used hot glue to position these support blocks but you could use small screws or some other glue if you wish.

You should now have a shell that is ready to support your arena walls.

Use the plastruct plastic sheet of your choice to get the rock walls you want. Alternately, you could do something more ornate if you like. Make sure you plan for where you wish to put your entrances and cut openings of appropriate size for the tunnel entrances you have purchased.

Before you attach your tunnel entrances cut appropriate sized pieces of wrought iron fence and glue to the back of your tunnel entrances. These can be in whatever position you prefer. Down or up. Now glue the tunnel entrances in place.

Now it is just a matter of painting the arena to your liking and flocking the base of the arena with ballast. I used plenty of white glue for the flocking to make sure it was durable.

If you prefer to have hexes in the bottom of your arena I would glue a hex mat down to the bottom piece of masonite before scribing your circles.

I also finished my arena off by gluing down some black felt over the top of the box around the arena opening.

Hopefully this gives you some idea of how I built my arena.

Large Entrance

Small Entrance

Corner Construction

The Arena in Action

Thanks for taking a look!