What a Great War….

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At the start if the play test block for Great War I really wasn’t enthused about WWI gaming. By the end of testing I really was enthused, and wanted to keep going. By that stage I had read, and written a bit about Villers Brettoneaux, brushed up on Mephisto (when we went to the QLD museum a few years back, I assumed it was a mock up, or fake. Wrong! The ONLY A7V left in the world, and Aussies nicked it? Get in!) and read about the broader war from the German offensive til the end. The similarities with WWII were much greater than I had suspected. It also gave me a new appreciation for CEW Bean as both a historian and a writer. If you don’t believe me, jump on the AWM website and read some of the official history. It’s very good.

As a result of all this interest, I grabbed a Blitz’s Battlegroup box, which I got a few weeks back now. With MOAB and some commission work on my painting desk, it was a while before I got to painting anything, but last weekend, I threw these together.

Like Mitch I wanted to get a platoon or two done quickly, and being buried under a mountain of German grey the though of doing more doesn’t really grab me, but on the other hand, at least I’m well practiced.

Less talk, more pics? Sure.

Mephisto and Gretchen. (Yes, I took Some artistic licence with the skulls, Mephisto didn’t have one for example, but I do like these decals. Must be the 40ker in me. They are Great decals in the tank box too, not at all like the poor quality decals in the recent BF platoon boxes, no ripping, not too thin).

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The guns I wanted to do in the funky camo scheme the Germans used.

See the BF home page for details, and the colour guide. A bit rushed, but really these aren’t ever going to be a ‘best army ‘ winner for me.
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The A7V models are really nicely detailed, and pretty easy to put together. And they have loads of guns. What’s not to like?

Tanks in the snow

A fellow stormtrooper, Manni, has been itching to talk about his 7th Armoured Division – recently taken to MOAB:

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Hey everyone, today I will be talking about my Winter / Battle of the Bulge Americans! Mainly based out of the books from Blood Guts and Glory, (7th Armoured and 709th Tank Destroyers) and soon-to-be Nuts (Glider Rifles which are currently being built).

 

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As you can see my American tanks are all white washed and winterised, the process I use is salt masking. I’ve seen plenty of people do a white wash with toothpaste or just using an old brush to get the paint streaks but the salt masking gives it a wonderful looking two layered effect as well being pockmarked.

 

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My process is to paint the tanks in their regular colours, which include tracks, commanders, just to the point that I gave it the ink wash. After that I varnish the tanks, then I use masking tape to cover the tracks, the commanders, and stowage. Then comes the salt, place it on the most used areas or most vulnerable areas to begin rubbed off such as hatches, mud guards, all hard edges and so on. It’s up to you how fresh the white wash should be, more salt = more uncovered areas so think about what you want before you do it. After which you then grab a can of white spray paint, I use the Army Painter White base Primer since I have a lot of trust in Army Painter.

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I then spray the whole tank completely white, I have heard plenty that people have experimented with very thin coats of white to allow the base colour to show through but in all cases I have heard it looks terrible and that is my experience as well. Make sure you spray the white coat solidly, the same you would if you were priming or base coating the tanks.

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Then when it dries you scrape off the salt and remove the tape, I then grab a knife and softly scrape the white off the hard edges, sometimes it may not work and you could see the primer beneath but from a gaming distance it’s acceptable since it gives the mini’s edges more definition in case you haven’t put much salt on the edges. I then paint any tools or stowage that you couldn’t get to as well as any weathering such as snow on the tracks or whatever you feel like, lastly I put one last layer of varnish on and tada!

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I highly recommend using regular table salt, it’s cheap and plentiful as well as easier to move into position with a wet paintbrush. I experimented with crush rock salt but it was too difficult to use since the rocks themselves were almost the size of 15mm infantry and didn’t give too good of an effect, you can see my 75mm M4A3L Shermans are rock salt experiments.

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With Remagen now released, I am a little flummoxed as to what to do if I want to field Americans out of that but all in all they are still very similar, I just need to invest in some Chaffees which I will probably winterise anyway.

So that’s my Winter Americans, hopefully you all like them and possibly inspire you to create a winterized army!

Great War – Stokes mortar platoon

Hi All

I recently had my British Great War stuff arrive and couldn’t wait to get started painting.

I decided to start with the Stokes mortar platoon. It’s a relatively quick platoon to paint and the mortar crew would be good test models before I start on the Rifle platoons.

The sculpts for these models are fantastic and were a real joy to paint.

I painted them as follows:

1) base coat of English uniform

2) wash of 50:50 water and black wash

3) dry brush brush of English uniform mixed with Iraqi sand for a highlight

4) the helmets and mortars were than painted brown violet

5) the webbing was painted khaki

6) the leather part of the boots were painted chocolate brown and the straps khaki grey

7) the skin was painted with flat flesh followed by a flesh wash.

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ANZAC rifle platoon

So this week my painting has travelled from the frozen forests of Finland to the steamy jungles of Nui Dat.  I’ve completed my 1st ANZAC rifle platoon for Vietnam. This is my 3rd platoon completed and I’m now one more rifle platoon away from playing my 1st 1000 pt Nam game.

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More Finnish artillery

Hey fellow wargamers and hobby enthusiasts

I’ve finished painting my 3rd Finnish artillery battery over the weekend, a battery of 150 H/40 (15cm sFH18) howitzers.

I plan to use this battery in my LW Finnish lists for both my Jaakari and Panssari lists.  The heavy artillery is the best long range anti-tank threat available to the Finns.  The 2+ FP will also be great for digging out enemy infantry when attacking.  I’ve opted for the German guns over the slightly cheaper Russian guns due to their ability to fire a smoke bombardment. Not that I particularly want my heavy artillery firing smoke bombardments, however, having the back up option is nice.  I can include the heavy artillery in mid war but in my opinion it’s to big a points sink.

To paint the guns I continued with the 3 colour camo scheme that I have been using with a slight change.  The colours used were VMC beige brown, VMC stone grey and VMC reflective green.  Previously I had used VMC German camo bright green for the green but from feedback received and some further research, I decided to use a darker tone of green on this battery.

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Finnish Landsverk AA

Hi fellow wargamers

I’ve recently finished some Landsverk AA for my Finnish Panssarikomppania.

I have whitewashed the tanks as I want to keep them consistent with my winter Finns, however, I still wanted to paint the 3 colour camo underneath. Mostly to practice painting camo with my airbrush, but also the base colours still show up even with the whitewash.

The 3 colour camo on the Landsverk was actually Swedish camo colours, which were a combination of brown, green and orange.

 

Step 1- German camo medium brown

Step 1- German camo medium brown

Step 2 - German camo orange ochre

Step 2 – German camo orange ochre

Step 3- Green Grey

Step 3 – Green Grey

Step 4 - Black wash

Step 4 – Black wash

Step 5 - whitewash

Step 5 – whitewash

Step 6 - paint crew

Step 6 – paint crew

Completed platoon

Completed platoon

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Finnish BA-10s

Hey Guys

I finished painting up some whitewashed Finnish BA-10s last night.  These guys will feature in my MW and LW Finnish lists.

The painting process was relatively simple with these.

(for ease all colours referenced below are Vallejo Model Colour)

Step 1- Basecoat of Russian Green

Step 2 – Wash of black ink

Step 3 – Drybrush of white over the model to create the whitewash effect.

Step 4 – Paint the tyres black grey

Step 5 – Paint the inside of wheels gunmetal grey

Overall, i’m quite happy with these guys and they were relatively simple to paint, a great set of model to add to my force.

The platoon

The platoon

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Painting British armour

Hi All

 

I’ve recently completed painting a platoon of British Stuarts and Sherman objective marker.  Below is a run through of how i’ve painted my British armour.

To start with I applied a basecoat of VMC russian uniform using my airbrush (for more details read here http://www.axisofattack.com/uncategorized/a-new-dawn-painting-with-an-airbrush/).

 

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I then applied a black was thinned down with water 50:50.

Wash applied

Wash applied

 

After the wash has dried, I apply a highlight.  To do this I mix together VMC russian uniform and khaki and drybrush this over the model.

Highlight

Highlight

 

I generally skip painting the tracks and prefer to have them look like they are covered in mud. I do this as part of the weathering of the vehicle, applying a heavy drybrush over the tracks and a light drybrush over the armour.  To do this I use VMC flat earth mixed with VMC US tan earth.

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I decided to apply some black smoke pigment to the areas of the destroyed Sherman where it had been shot up.  This was done using the flames of war weathering pigments.

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I mixed the pigment with a small amount of water and painted it onto the the penetrated areas of the tank.

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One thing I learnt the hard way with these pigments is you need to apply a Matt Medium over the pigment to protect the colour and protect it from rubbing off.  For this I used Vallejo Matt Medium and just brushed it on.

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After applying a dull coat the models where complete.

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A new dawn – painting with an airbrush

Over the past year I have gone back and forth on whether or not to purchase an airbrush. After much conversation with Sean and seeing the finish an airbrush could achieve I finally decided to purchase one (a nice tax refund helped here too).

Sean gave me some fairly simple but truthful advice when it came to purchasing which was “buy the best damn airbrush you can afford”.  This claim was backed up by several other experienced airbrush users I spoke too.  With that in mind, I visited my local model shop Hobbyland at Hornsby (unfortunately they don’t sell FoW) and picked up a Paasche dual action airbrush set.

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I was keen to get started right away and pulled out a British Sherman objective marker to test on straight away.

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I mixed up some Vallejo Russian Uniform model colour with a Tamiya paint thinner until I had a milk like consistency, loaded this into the side feed and got spraying.

I was so impressed by the quality of the basecoat and the time it took, that I pulled out some British Stuart’s I already had undercoated and sprayed them as well. All up the 4 tanks took me about 10 mins and produce a great base coat which was ready to go.

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Getting to this stage with a brush used to took me significantly longer.  It would generally involve 3-4 watered down layers of the base colour, plus all the drying time in between, before I would get to this stage.

The cleaning of the airbrush didn’t take too long either, I sprayed through a mix of water and the airbrush thinner until it came through clear and then gave it a quick wipe.

I’m really looking forward to doing more painting with the airbrush this coming weekend and I’m eyeing up the 6 Churchills that I own sitting in a box waiting to be painted.

 

Finnish 76 K/02 Artillery

I’ve finished painting some Finnish 76 K/02 guns.  This artillery battery will feature in my Finnish army across all 3 periods. While they are light artillery, these guys will become my main AT gun in EW with their ROF 2, AT 8 and FP3+. In MW and LW these guys will predominantly be used as a means to smoke and pin as my Jaakari move in for the assault.

I’ve painted the guns using the Finnish 3 colour camo, which comprises of Vallejo beige brown, stone grey and German camo bright green.

 

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