Sunday, 10 December 2017

Bodstonian Dragoons (Pt 4)

As noted at PSR;

This gives us nine poses, which is quite a good number for a cavalry set of this quality, so we feel quite guilty in pointing out that a figure firing his musket from the saddle would have been a really useful pose (perhaps instead of one of the swordsmen)

Well, that´s easily sorted :-)

Top half of the Standing bod, bottom half of one of the one´s with sword in Hand, a bit of carefull cutting to preserve the Sabre (sorry, sword)  and cartridge box.
Hole drilled through both the legs and Torso.  Both are then joined using second glue and a filed down end of a toothpick which was jammed up through the legs and into the torso.
The other end of the toothpick is then stuck into a cork for ease of handling whilst painting.
When finished, toothpick is cut to length (snipped off so  a half a cm or less is left sticking out under the rider) and the rider stuck to the nag by inserting the short length of toothpick into  a pre-drilled hole in the saddle.

Next..the Command section.

Friday, 8 December 2017

Bodstonian Dragoons (Pt 3)

A couple more Standing bods.
The one tending the nag has had his left arm swopped with one of the riflemen´s arms which has been repositioned so it looks like he´s giving the nag a sugar lump (maybe) and the reins have been cut away from his right hand.
I decided to base the bod "making ready" singularily as it makes him more adaptable and fit alongside the other free standing one who´se aiming/firing.
Only a couple of conversions and the command Group to go.

Sunday, 3 December 2017

Bodstonian Dragoons (Pt 2)

A couple more finished.  Unfortunately The set has few nag poses, 4 only,  so both riders have the same nag.
As there will only be a few Dragoons, 8 or so,* they don´t Warrant a Standard bearer etc so the Command bods in the set I´ll paint up as Regimental command bods. The wigged bod (described on the boxart as a Major)  as Jeremiah Coleman and the one firing his pistol (described on the boxart as an Ensign) as one of his sons, Rupert.

* If I can get hold of Zvezda´s  Swedish Dragoons of Charles XII I´ll add some more. The nags Sem to have different blankets but the uniforms  look almost identical..or? 

Friday, 1 December 2017

Bodstonian Dragoons (Pt 1)

Using the Zvezda Dragoons of Peter I set.

First up the dismounted bods 

The set Comes with 3 bods Holding the nags and a possible 6 nags for him to hold. Small Problem is ..if he´s Holding the reins..then all of the nags already have reins so they needed removing
An  "ahhh!" bit.
At the Moment we´ve  got 5 cats.
The ancient british short hair who found our house and we took in, the "runt" of a litter from a 3 legged cat´s first litter and the 3 legged cat and the  two kittens from her second litter 
The 3 legged cat was originally given space at ours due to her giving birth a day before the original owners moved . With all the stress and chaos of the move it was better they had somewhere quiet. After the kittens (3 of them, two went to friends) were old enough she was given back to the owners but it proved too difficult for them and we took her back..only to find she was again pregnant. 
From left to right.."Pepper", the "runt" of the 1st litter, "Bobby",  the 3 legged cat "Emie" and "Foxy".
"Ghost",  the British short hair lives in her granny flat (the Conservatory) as the kittens pester her - she´s too old for being annoyed. 
Their names are provisional as they are already promised to friends..shame as I really like "Bobby" and I´ll be sad to see him go. 

Monday, 27 November 2017

English Men-At-Arms 13th-14th Century - Strelets (conversions)

The OOB set has 12 poses to which I´d added two conversions already, as can be seen HERE
Back then I reckoned at least another 4  conversions were here they are.
Left.The obvious and not much of an conversion, swopping the flag for a spear.
Right. Adding a halberd from the MiniArt French Knights with Assault Ladders set to the trumpeter was a bit more complicated.
Left. As the pole of the halbard is quite thin the head breaks off easily which means either replacing it or converting  the bod into another as a staff slinger.
Right. Spear removed and replaced with an axe,  heater type shield added

Saturday, 18 November 2017


The foot bodettes to complement  the Mounted set.
10 in the set, half of which are archers,  which, when added to the Modern Amazon foot, gives them a lot more firepower.
This lot are dressed and armed less like their Modern Amazon sisters, who are more along the lines of Conan/ Hercules / Zena type Books, Comics and films but more like the ancient greek depiction of Amazons.

Were there actual Tribes of Amazons? The greek stories of female warriors of  scythian / sarmatian tribes of female warriors may have, with the telling, become exaggerated.  Archeological finds Show about 20% of Scythian-Sarmatian 'warrior graves'  contain women dressed and armed for battle similar to the male warriors of the time so maybe not whole tribes purely made up of females but it´s likely females fought alongside the males.
That, or that the women practised the arts of war so that when the men went to war they could defend thier camps. Maybe the idea of purely female warrior tribes came to be after such a camp was found by a foreign army/travellers

Who knows for sure and TBH, I don´t much care as they will become part of the Cimmerian faction.
As with the rest of their Amazon sisters (Modern or ancient versions) they have a tendency to go, at least  partly, au naturel. 
The entire Amazonian (Cimmerian females) force.
Mounted section 
The ranged weapons sections.
Now there´s only the second set of Cimmerian foot to get painted and that´s the Cimmerians finished. 

Saturday, 11 November 2017

Mounted Amazons

I´m still playing "catch up" with the Alliance range of Fantasy bods.
34 sets and I´ve painted about 28-29 of them.
As with the Modern Mounted Amazons I´ve swopped the nags provided for ones from the HäT Numidian cavalry and the Zvezda Carthaginian Numidian Cavalry  so they fit alongside the Cimmerian Cavalry and the Modern Mounted Amazons (no saddles and reins etc)
10 mounted and two foot bodettes. A bit of Flash to deal with but not too much.
The ranged weapons section
Foot command
One or two of them are a bit free with thier choice of clothing. 

Sunday, 5 November 2017

War Trolls - (Set 3)

Made By Dark Alliance
4 Trolls in the set, hardish plastic, virtually no Flash.
They look more like Cave trolls than the the Previous sets of War Trolls (Olog-hai) but seeing as they appear to be  cave trolls and  are able, like the Olog-hai, to withstand sunlight*, I´ve painted them up so they match thier armoured Cousins.
"They have a cave Troll!"
He´s missing a collar and chain but basically he´s the spitting Image of the poor troll who gets visciously set upon and killed in the film "The Fellowship of the Ring"
Tristan and Tommy
These have a  slightly  chunkier bodies than thier armoured kin and thier bases are big enough so they stand on thier own.
Family Group no particular order
Timmy, Toby, Terence, Tyson, Trevor, Troy, Triston and Tommy.
* Apparently only Stone trolls turn into Stone when exposed to sunlight, similar to what happened to poor old  Tom, Bert and William who are cruelly tricked by Bilbo into staying up too Long.

A size comparison pic.  I´m not  certain that covering his head with his Hands will be that much of a help.

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Fire Demons - Balrogs (Set 2)

Again, made by Dark Alliance and again, big beasts.
For  my considerations on size ..see HERE
 The whole Gang together. I might have swopped the wings between the two sets. Alliance has made Trolls, Balrogs, Orcs, Uruks, Dwarves, Elves and Wargs to populate a 1/72nd scale middle earth.
What´s missing?
Hobbits, Rangers, Ents, Haradrim, DunlendingNazgûl on foot or mounted either on nags or Fell beasts, Barrow wights, Dwarves mounted on Rams
Mûmakil but too big maybe ?

Another "period" for me to get into?
Zombie Hunters/Post apocalypse survivors from Dark Alliance,  coming in 2018

Saturday, 28 October 2017

War Trolls - Olog-hai (Set 2)

The second set of Trolls from Dark Alliance and in Terms of use and ..unfortunately   Quality*,  a bit of a mixed set.
You get eight in the box, two lots of four poses and I´ve painted up only one...the reasons will become clear.
The catapult is from one of those "Bag-O-Kniggits". I´ve replaced the end of the throwing arm, added some cogs from a broken wind up toy and replaced the wheels. 

*Of the other three. poses? Well, it Looks as if the mold has "slipped" and slipped quite badly, 1-2mm´s.  I´m used to removing mold lines, IMHO, it´s part of the hobby but in this case, the amount of slippage meant they were way beyond saving.  C'est la vie.
Hopefully this was in only a few sets and I was unlucky as I really like the Alliance Fantasy Range.
I´ll chalk it up to bad luck on my part and hopefully I can get hold of a complete set later on.
But what were they up too?
It Looks like two are the ones who were opening the Black Gate in the LotR´s film "The two Towers" but they could equally be employed to push/pull siege weapons like a seige Tower.
The 4th pose Looks very much like his painted Counterpart and similar looking ones are seen loading catapults in the LotR´s film "Return of the King"
He could be saved with a lot of snipping but TBH, I haven´t the time

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Fire Demons - Balrogs (set 1)

Made by Dark Alliance.
These things are big, not quite as big as  the  Balrog  in the LotR´s film, The Fellowship of the Ring and although Tolkien was never specific about the size and appearance of the Moria Balrog it´s film depiction is frankly,  ridicously enormous.

Thier height.
From page 194 in "The Book of Lost Tales II"
"Then Glorfindel's left hand sought a dirk, and this he thrust up that it pierced the Balrog's belly nigh his own face (for that demon was double his stature)..."

Apparently Elves are supposed to be tall, and Glorfindel around  6'6" (or taller?) so doubling his height, this makes  the Balrog, at least  13' tall. 
The Alliance Fire demons are ca; 6cm´s tall. In 1/72nd, roughly 4.5 meters, roughly  15' foot 2 and 1/2 times bigger than a man but roughly 2x the height of an elf so the sculptor at Alliance has them just about right.
I´m not good at reproducing flame/fire effects especially on such large sculpts but I wanted to portray them as if they have fire /intense heat within them, hence the attempt at a  "Lava" effect on thier Skin. Did it work?
They are also described as having "steel like claws". Wether this means "actual steel" or "as hard as steel"  I´m not sure. I tried steel coloured claws but it looked odd so I went for more animalistic colours. Fits with the teeth colour as well.
A tiny bit of Flash but as they are semi hard plastic it´s easy to remove.
The Demons have two holes in thier backs, the wings two pegs but the holes needed Drilling out so the pegs would fit. Even then, the wings are quite heavy and due to the non-glueable type of plastic they  needed pinning so they would hold. 

Saturday, 21 October 2017

Orc Catapults

Produced by Dark Alliance, they appear to be  Based on the ones shown in the  Hobbit film, Battle of the five armies.
I´ve stuck to the colour scheme I used for the Olag Hai,  animal characteristics - the pinkish Skin and troll ones , the Grey cracked Stone like Skin
Initially it´s not 100% clear that the catapult set and the troll set  are to be used as one, especially for those who haven´t seen the film. There is  no plan / diagram to show what the catapult "sledges" should look like when they are built but more on that later.

Anyway, These are made up from two sets.
Set one..the "War Trolls for Catapult"..2 of them (HERE) and set two...the catapult "sledges" plus two Crews of 4 orcs in the set "Orcs Catapult" (HERE)
Either of them are a bit odd if used  on thier own so you need to buy both sets.

Problems and  Solutions

1. The trolls don´t attach that well to their bases. The pegs just don´t hold even with glueing or welding with a heated screwdriver. Solution? I cut the pegs off and drilled holes in the feet, made Counter sinks on the bottom of the bases and using small Wood screws, screwed the bases to the trolls.
2. The "Sledges". With the lack of a diagram I had to fiddle about a bit and prefit the "sledges" to the trolls to see if I´d put them together correctly. 
The "sledges" have  tabs underneath and the trolls have corresponding  holes in thier backs. Problem ? It doesn´t fit or hold. Glue? Seeing as the plastic isn´t the glueable kit type..nope. Heat welding ?There´s too little space to do this. Solution? I cut the Tabs off and drilled holes in the trolls backs and through the "sledges" . Nails, slightly thicker than the holes were then stuck into the trolls backs.   To attach I just pressed the "sledges" onto the nails.
This solution turned out to be better in that  when the "sledge" is added to the Standing troll using the Tabs, the throwing arm tends to be too low so the sling with the rock hangs on the ground. By using a nail, the  angle of the nail can be altered which alters the angle of the "sledge",  raising the sling off the ground and giving a more or less horizontal platform for the Crew.

3. The "sledges". Seeing as they are made of non-glueable plastic,  the parts need heat welding together.
The wheels on the sides ? They have (unless you look at the link below) have no visible function so I´ve added spokes so they give the Impression of being used to draw the arm down.

As actual war machines they wouldn´t work. There´s no Tension skeins of any worth to add Torsion to the throwing arm, no gearage to pull the  arm down , no release System.  Ok, the orc could bend Forward quickly to lob the arm Forward (in the style of a fustibalus - Stave or staff sling) but that would mean the Crew would also fly off or be putting in Claims for work related whiplash injuries.
They could be made more "realistic" like THIS but it would mean a lot of  fiddly work but TBH, I like the look of them as they are.