Wednesday, 24 December 2014


In another addition to Team Trotsky, I’ve finally managed to get some mobility into the force, with the addition of an S-Model BRDM-2, supplied by The Hobby Den. This is a delightful little model, of the “Quick build” variety, and even better, each box contains two, for about twelve quid! The level of detail on these kits is excellent, and the box even includes a fret of photo-etched brass parts in addition to a decent decal sheet, providing options for Russian (including Guards, Naval Infantry and a somewhat generic red star with a hammer and sickle within- which I’ll probably use on a KGB BTR-70, since I have no idea what they’re actually intended for…) Czech, Polish and Romanian vehicles.

I ended up leaving off the bulk of the etched brass parts, using only the towing hooks; the rear view mirror and headlight brush guards I wrote off as two fragile for gaming purposes, I tried to attach the small guard above the commanders hatch, but this too proved to be too fragile, and so was replaced with a piece of bent sprue, likewise I substituted the grab handles on the engine deck and hull sides with strips of stretched sprue, to give an impression of the detail, rather than leave these quite obvious details off completely.

Given the fact that this is a “Quick build” (and thus much vaunted by wargamers) kit, I would’ve liked to see the inclusion of alternative plastic parts for these footery brass bits; for although they would have undoubtedly been clunkier, they would have been more robust and easier to attach, and in a gamin piece this would’ve been a good trade off. Likewise, I would happily have seen the PE parts deleted in preference for some better consideration of some of the moulding gates in some of the plastic parts- things like the machine guns and entrenching tool have really quite thick gates feeding into their very slender and delicate barrels and hafts. I ended up mangling the spade and replacing the co-ax MG with more stretched sprue.

The kit was finished off with some minimal stowage from Kingfisher and BW, and sat on an MDF base from Warbases.

 Painting and decals followed, and while in reality, the Guards insignia would’ve been painted out if action was imminent, the S-Model decal omits the white infill, and looks quite “low-vis”, so I decided to keep it on, to break up what would otherwise have been an ugly green blob. A nylon brush bristle provided the radio aerial, and it was topped off with my signature Disney-fied groundwork….

This will soon be joined by the AT version, as well as some assorted APCs, and the whole horde will be, more or less, mobile come the new year!

On that note, it only remains for me wish you all a Merry Christmas, and thanks you for your interest in the blog over the last year, hoping this finds you well, and all the very best for 2015!


Soviet Support

Blimey, been a while since I updated this! (and yet no more Normans have since been painted…)

Since the last update, I’ve been well and truly back on the Cold War swing. I’ve managed to finish a couple of support weapons for the Soviet Motor Rifles force I’ve been putting together to face my BAOR on the plains of Northern Germany. Both are from the superlative Elhiem range, and will soon be joined by a couple of AGS-17 Automatic Grenade Launchers and an 82mm mortar.

First up, an AT-5 ATGM and crew, down among the weeds hunting Chieftains…

Secondly, the old faithful DShK 12.7mm HMG. Dunno quite where these fit into the TO&E of an 80’s MRR right enough (equally, BMP regiments didn’t appear to deploy ground mounted  ATGM teams, I’ve since discovered), however, I’m sure I’ll find a use for it somewhere (barrage battalions, anyone?)…


With the addition of these elements, the Soviet force is slowly taking shape, and is heading towards a playable entity.


Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Continental Cousins

With an upcoming DBA-ish campaign based around either the Norman Conquest of Sicily or the First Crusade on the horizon, I decided to get some Normans on the painting bench, in order that I could take part properly, rather than using my much later Scots as proxies, or sponging off the other players for appropriate figures.

So far I've only managed to get the general finished and based, along with his standard bearer and loyal attendant/ evil henchman (depending on your viewpoint).

Baron D'Guyerre* (10 pts for spotting the movie reference...)

I also procured some Vikings (since that's my prime, if not only real, interest in dark age/early mediaeval forces) however, haven't made a start on them yet, since they'll be of limited utility in the campaign we have planned (unless there are some spectacularly unlucky dice rolls...). However, the dread fleet of Haakon the Bastard and Magnus Trollhammern should make an appearance at some point soon. Maybe...

Quite pleased with how these have turned out, if only that they don't somehow look especially "Norman", though hopefully the next few batches should remedy that. The bases were intended to be a bit of a compromise; I'd initially just intended on doing them in plain desert colours, but then thought that I would like them to be usable as Conquest era Normans against Saxons, Scots, Vikings, etc, so had to get some sort of greenery into them, without making them exclusively North West European looking. I think the trade off worked reasonably well. Like MTP, it doesn't blend in perfectly with temperate or desert settings, but doesn't look hopelessly out of place in either of those either.

However, I'm now engaged in a bit of a push to get some more Cold War Soviets done, so we'll see when the next batch of Normans gets finished...


*In the fine tradition of "William the Bastard,", he was going simply be "Stephen the Cunt", but I decded against it.

Sunday, 31 August 2014

Reinforcements for GSFG...

Finishing touches applied and bases done for the three Motor Riflemen I've been working on. the Soviet horde is growing now, and beginning to look suitably menacing. Work has begun on a AT-4 and DsHK HMG to back them up and bring them more or less in line with what my BAOR have so far...

They've come out quite well, I think. I really need to look into BMPs now. Anyone got Boris the Blade's number..?


Friday, 22 August 2014

A Return to Paint-Flinging...

 After something of a hiatus over the summer, it’s time to get back on with some progress on the painting front, now that Autumn is on the way. As the dearth of blog updates both here and on Bobinantes can confirm, I’ve not been particularly busy over the summer, instead having to concentrate on real life, rather than that in scale.

So what have I been up to? Mainly terrain. I managed to complete the rocky outcrop and bocage sections I was working on, and, short of a few bits of detailing that need to be done on the outcrop, I think they look pretty good-

Something that has been sitting on my workbench for about a year is a solitary undercoated figure from Elhiem’s Soviet Infantry in Body Armour set. The idea being to paint up some sort of internal security forces as an excuse for some suitably wacky, psychedelic “camouflage” uniforms of the type often seen in the Middle East, Asia and some of the former Soviet republics. I sort of lost interest in it for a while, but now have rekindled it with an idea for an “Imagi-Nation” which will form the basis for a more in-depth future project. To get it off the ground, I cracked on with this one, and he came out rather well. The lettering on the front of the helmet was one of those happy accidents, which I will be totally unable to replicate again. It was originally just going to be 4 white blobs to represent “OMOH” (see the patch on the back of his armour- that was done first!), but then the paintbrush started to move, and the rest just sort of happened…

And finally, I have re-started on the Cold War in 20mm! Matt at Elhiem has released some spanking new BAOR sculpts (including some rather nice RUC, which I have no real need for, but want anyway…) and with the Autumn approaching (the season for the wearing of tweed, listening to of Prog and painting of Cold War subjects. It’s the law.) there was really no choice in the matter!

Started on the next three troops for the 2nd BMP squad for the Soviets. Nothing much to show so far-

In the tune of something a bit different, I’ve also made a start on some refugees, of which I aim to have a couple of bases of. However, these are proving a bit of a pig, mainly as no one makes suitable 80’s civilians! Sure there are IM plastic types, but next to metal wargames figures, even ones as well proportioned as Elhiem, they look very ethereal and waif-like, and generally just not right. However, I’ve managed to source some from Sgt’s Mess, which although wearing more or less 1940s clothes, seem to be adaptable enough with the right paintjob…

However, I now notice Elhiem have released some 70s types, some of whom may be suitable to join the convoy, however, this will probably merit some further investigation…

Lastly, a sneak preview at a test subject for a future project. What could this be…?

…you’ll just have to wait and see!