Sunday, 17 August 2014

There's a change in the weather coming...

Welcome to another Sunday update and I'll start this one of with a pause...

... No matter what life throws at you, if you take time out to look around at what there is in the world, you may get a better perspective from it. I found that sitting by a river for an hour or so, with some coffee, a sandwich and some company was just such a moment. Add to that, two loaves of bread and a flotilla of ducks and swans to feed, and it was an hour spent recharging. It is soul food and we all need to keep our inner spirit charged up...

...So, this week has been one of progress. To start with, I have sorted through a bunch of Squats, based the bodies, added the heads, sculpted on beards, added wire for the arms to be built on and shortened a bunch of lasguns to go with them. I have added a little green stuff to some of the wire arms to act as a base for the arm sculpting to start proper and have decided that the Sgt's with berets will be used in a beret wearing platoon rather than a helmet wearing one. I have also built up a special character, armed with a pistol and close combat dog... but that is all just so much talk... so here are a couple of images of what I have done so far:

 Click the Pic!

Click the Pic!

Click the Pic!

The middle pic shows my little Squat production mat and on it are a few weapons in the process of being changed (lasguns have been shortened, plasma pitols lengthened to be used as plasma guns). The Character has Catachan Jungle Fighter arms and a throwing mastiff from Mantic's Kings of War Dwarf range.

I'd like to mention at this point that all of the Squat miniatures pictured, were bought painted and have been stripped with Dettol. It does a tremendous job of cleaning them up and smells fairly nice too. There are a couple of Squats that didn't get dipped because they only had tiny areas of paint (so any paint you see  hasn't been left behind after stripping, it just hasn't been stripped).

As is normally the case, I am overthinking everything and it seems that I may be opting for hovercraft for these guys to travel in. After last week's post showing the bikes, I have been looking at various hover vehicles and it seems that the Hammer's Slammers ranges that are about may be brought into play. Here's a way-back link to OLD CROW and here's a current link to AINSTY CASTINGS. Both have a range of Hammer's Slammers vehicles that could prove useful to me, even if it turns out to be just inspiration for my own stuff.

Last weekend, my daughter passed her basic training on motorcycles (125cc) so this week I have been looking at small bikes. I have got myself a small loan (good for the credit rating) and will be going to choose one next week... so it looks like me and my daughter will have a new toy quite soon! I am looking forward to it.

Well... that about sums it up for now so I'll go and get on with stuff.

See you from the middle lane!

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Hurry up and... stop...

This week has been one of minimal hobby time. All I have done is finish off a bunch of preliminary work on my ten Squat miniatures. That means that the sgts have their weapons, the troops have their weapons and all of them have a coating of green stuff over the wire that will soon become arms. As a result, there are no photographs yet.

In other news, I have started running again so much of my evening is now concerned with sport, showering after sport and recovering from sport... and for all those people who think that exercise helps you sleep, I can safely say, no it doesn't. What it does do, is fire up the imagination so when you can't sleep you get more ideas (something to do with more oxygen in the brain, I expect).

So, I've been thinking about a few things and throwing the odd Google search out into the WWW and I found this:


I found photographs of it first and that led to the video. What I have found is the birth of an idea for a Grymn ground attack aircraft. I'll leave that one there for a moment.

Other things I have been thinking about is Squat bikes. Squats have tiny legs and as a result, any motorcycle that they ride would have to be so low to the ground that there would be no ground clearance... so, really, standard motorcycle design is off the cards... then I thought about how they would sit and it would either be in a proper chair (which would make hand-to-hand fighting impossible), on a bench seat or they could stand up and lean back on something. That got me thinking... I've seen this MONSTROCITY... but there is a way of making a chariot without having stuff pulling it... but the actual chariot shape would work nicely... so I'll leave that one there for a moment too because... I've also been thinking about one-man (Squat) hovercraft. They would be easy to make and would look pretty cool... so maybe I could use them instead of bikes (a bit like these ones that I built ages ago for a different project (but a slightly better design)):

Click the Pic!

I have all sorts of ideas about making them look better so... I'll leave that here for a moment as well.

Finally... here's something that I threw together ages ago (it's not for the faint-hearted).  I've posted it up before but it's fun so I thought I'd post it again:

See you from the bowels of the deepest dungeon!

Sunday, 3 August 2014

It has started... again!

It seems to me that there are times when I can do stuff and there are times where I can't. This week seems to be one where I have been able to put some stuff together for a project.

Over the last few months, I have been watching Ebay and buying up plastic Squat miniatures from GW. They are long out of production and usually covered in a variety of paint schemes but once they are broken down into components and paint stripped, they look quite presentable. I have obviously been quite good at this Ebay thing because I have managed to amass 120+ of the plastic Squats... so now I think I've got enough and need to start putting them together.

Well... that is what I started to do and I quickly came up against a stumbling block. I really didn't like the way the plastic arms look on them. The posing was rigid, unnatural and generally made them look wrong. The heavy bolter that sits on a specially raised shoulder pad looked ridiculous as well so there was need to think about how I was going to deal with these issues.

I came to the conclusion that sculpting the arms onto the miniatures was the way to go... I also thought that I would use tracked vehicles for the heavy weapons... a bit like these (WIP):

Click the Pic!

You've seen them before but for a different project, however, I may still take a different route and use the Taurus Gun Tractors from Anvil Industries instead. In the meantime, I have a lot of troopers to convert and here is a WIP of the first ten:

Click the Pic!

You will notice a number of things about the photo:
  1. All of the plastic heads have been altered a little for individuality.
  2. The non helmeted Squats have been given berets.
  3. All of the troopers have neckerchiefs to hide the gap and enable squad identification.
  4. One of the troopers is holding a shortened lasgun (they will all get these).
  5. I have added the wire to each of them for sculpting the arms onto.
It is obviously early days yet... but it is a start and hopefully, once I get into a rhythm with the sculpting, I should be able to get the arms done quicker as I go along.

In other news, I have been Tango'd!

If you aren't aware, there is a forum member on The Miniatures Pages who scouts out all sorts of stuff and fills the forum with it. Well, it seems that my Imperial Guard to Squat guide was picked up on his radar and he posted it on the forum HERE. I really don't know what to say about it :).

See you from the queue for the salt and vinegar crisps!

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Imperial Guard to Space Dwarf Guide.

Another guide. This time, how to convert a classic, plastic, Imperial Guardsman into a Space Dwarf.

Imperial Guard to Squat Guide.
To view the images at their proper size, right click the image and view in a new tab.

I hope you can make use of the guide and if you do, please feel free to post pix of your efforts and share this page with other who you think may appreciate it.

See you from the Reclusium.

Mini Marine Guide.

There are occasions where people ask after certain 'How To' guides that I have put together. Well, I have just converted this one into pictures so here is the first one:

Mini Marines 
To view the images at their proper size, right click on each image and view in a new tab.

I hope you can make use of the guide and if you do, please feel free to post pix of your efforts and share this page with others who you think may appreciate it.

See you from the Cathedral!

Sunday, 27 July 2014

End of an Era.

Before I start today's post proper, I'd like to welcome Hybrid Alpha to Inso's World. Welcome to the blog and I hope you enjoy wandering around and sharing ideas.

Well, I'm afraid that my hobby mojo has deserted me again. I'm hoping that it is just the weather because I have so many things I want to get done but recently I have just ot had the enthusiasm or drive to do them. I have achieved nothing this week (where the hobby is concerned). All I have managed to do is sort out a few components into poly bags for a Squat squad and shorten a few classic lasguns. 

So what else has happened? 

Last Thursday was our unit's families day. A time when the families of the service men and women can visit, watch some displays, see some static aircraft, have a wander round some stalls and see a band later in the evening. It was pretty good; the Chinook flying display was particularly awesome (as usual) and the band was a not-Beatles band... and they were pretty cool too. Here are a few pix:

Click the Pix!

This last pic is of a Puma HC Mk2 helicopter. It is what I have been helping to roll into service over the last couple of years:

Click the Pic!

It is an uprated and updated Puma with better engines, better electronics and much better capabilities. When I first left training, the first cab I ever worked on was a Puma HC Mk1 and to be able to be a part of introducing the latest update is humbling. She's a beauty :).

In other news... Didcott now has a few less chimneys at the power station:

Click the Pic (Before)!

Click the Pic (After)!

I stayed up all night last night, just to see the chimneys fall. At around 05:00hrs this morning, the three towers were destroyed by a not insugnificant explosion. I was a long way away (these are NOT my pictures, I was directed to these on Facebook) and only saw a tiny spectacle... but a few seconds later, I heard the bang that went with it. As a result, I am tired but am very glad that I saw the end of an era. 

And what does it prove?

Times change.

See you from the back of the HMS Pinafore!

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Holiday round-up and the FunVee Project.

Before I start today's post, I'd like to welcome Baconfat to Inso's World. Welcome aboard and please make yourself at home, take any ideas you wish and be sure to comment on the posts.

So... today is the last day of my week's holiday. It has been a busy one with day-trips here and there, swimming, lounging, drinking, feeding the ducks, getting the car serviced/MOTd and robins fledging... and that is just the tip of the ice-berg.

It has been really... REALLY humid over the last few days and I have been exceptionally lethargic so hobby-stuff hasn't been hugely on the agenda but I have been ticking along with what I am now calling the 'FunVee Project' (create a Space Dwarf vehicle that I can cast up).

You may remember this from a post in June:

Click the Pic!

Well, it ended up at this point before I realised that it was just too flimsy to even consider casting it:

Click the Pic!

I also decided that it would be awkward to cast as a result of it being fully assembled and some of the shapes... so a rethink happened and I ordered a lot of (thicker) plasticard from Antenociti's Workshop. Once everything arrived, I set to building a slightly different shaped vehicle in modular form. This is the point I am at now:

Click the Pic!

As you can see, I have started to put a small amount of detail on but I am planning to keep things fairly detail free so that I can change options without having to build new modules. The idea behind the original vehicle was to build a larger 'Humvee' type vehicle that was armoured and quick. It needed to be able to carry a squad of 8-10 Space Dwarfs and be useable as a counts-as Rhino vehicle (like the ones Games Workshop make). In order for that to happen it needed rear, side and top access and the option to add a storm-bolter/HK missile on the top. I didn't want a Rhino clone (hence going for four wheels). Because I am making it modular, it gives me the option to experiment a bit... so I can add extra wheels on the side or swap them all out (at a much later date) and add track units if I want to. Here is a rough idea of two of the options:

Click the Pic!

Obviously, things are at a very WIP state at the moment but the plan is to make modular components to be able to have a four wheeled Rhino/Razorback/Predator (APC/IFV/light tank), and a six wheeled truck/transporter with a possible later addition of tracks (either standard ones or smaller track unit that replace each wheel individually... giving the option of a halftrack). The various details will be separate so you just glue them on where you fancy... or leave them off if you want to.

So... there we go. I still have a long way to go yet but from little acorns; great oak trees grow.

See you from the bitter end!