20mm Figures & Models
I recently caught up with my gaming buddy Kieran (6mm Wargaming), and he brought round his completed 1/72 scale Italeri European Building kitsets he has done for his 1944 Normandy terrain. Kieran’s been taking a break from Crossfire and playing a lot of Kampfgruppe Normandy and has been steadily working on his terrain and new 20mm (German & U.S.) armies for that theatre. The Italeri buildings are the Country House, House With Porch, and the Stone House; and Kieran has gone to reasonable efforts to detail them with window shutters, walls & gates (some scratch built, some commercial), and other features – I think you’ll agree they’ve come out looking very good! I’ll be looking to achieve similar with my kits when I get around to them, and may have to talk Kieran into doing them for me since he’s done such a good job of his own! Continue reading
The full running order for the de Argostini Combat Tanks Collection in New Zealand has now been available for sometime (i.e. since mid-2012) – I thought it might be useful to quickly post it up here along with updated links to the forum (which moved during 2012). The series is expected to conclude in April (or possibly May) 2014 with 110 issues. The full listing of the running order for the issues is below (note it still appears that the model for issue 110, the final issue, has not been confirmed): Continue reading
Dragon Armor has announced in the last few weeks the release of several of their new models planned for the 2011-2012 period, as many will know the Japanese Type 95 Ha-Go and Type 97 Chi-Ha have both been released (there are now 2 colour schemes available for the former and 3 for the latter) along with the U.S. LVT-A(1) with 37mm gun turret, and various German light vehicles such as the SdKfz 222 Light Reconnaissance Car and SdKfz 251/22 Half-Track with PaK40 on board. Most recently has been the release of the Neubaufahrzeug from Panzerabteilung z.b.V.40 in Norway 1940. Now due in early 2012 are the German SdKfz 231 Heavy Reconnaissance Car in early war Panzer Grey (a much missed model from all ranges), and a British Infantry Tank Mk.IV Churchill Mk.III (the 6pdr version that served from Dieppe in 1942 until the end of the war in Italy and to a lesser extent in NWE.
Over the past 18 months I’ve regularly looked at the models buildings and wagons (and the Berlin Tram) by Najewitz Modellbau in Germany – they look fantastic in the photos and I’ve always been keen to take the plunge – however the description of the material has always had me a bit wary – the wagons & tram and some of the smaller scale buildings being laser cut Finnpappe which they describe as “…no word for it in English dictionary is a product made of ground wood pulp. To say it is cardboard is the wrong title for it. It´s more similar to MDF, quasi ‘MDF-light’.” However the larger 1/72nd and 28mm buildings are kitsets of a resin material, the type isn’t clearly specified on the website – but I took the plunge recently and ended up ordering a selection of the 1/72nd scale buildings…
Yes, they are here, masses of Soviet Samokhodnaya Ustanovka (SU) Assault Guns and Tank Destroyers – part of (a larger than planned) arsenal I’ve been accumulating for my 20mm scale World War II Russian forces for Crossfire! The real bonus is being able to obtain off EBay 4 Forces of Valor model 85041 SU-122 models (representing a vehicle of an unidentified unit on the Eastern Front, Winter of 1942/1943) – and at a reasonable price – they are rather rare (as they were only ever manufactured in limited numbers by all accounts) and usually quite expensive (due to their collectability) – most recently someone was trying to sell a single model on EBay for as much as US$90 (although about US$40-$60 is more usual)!
A friend just pointed out the following Model Distributor who offers a nice service casting custom models for people who supply an original master. They say “Send us your scratchbuilt master model and we will make an RTV (Room Temperature Vulcanizing) rubber mold of your model. We can then make approximately 75-100 copies of the master before the mold begins to deteriorate.” With a cost of as little as US$8 for each subsequent resin casting of the mould this could well be a fine option for those people wanting to churn out several dozen copies of an original figure or model – although the initial mould creation does cost around US$175. Check it out at the Fidelis Models Website…
Try out the suggestion from the “Nice Manners For A Thief” blog’s “How to save your dipped models from the dreaded Dullcote Frost“. Frosting (or that whitish build-up on model s0 is usually caused by a combination of poorly mixed and/or old varnish and temperature – varnish is quite fussy about the latter and if it’s too cold to too hot when you spray or brush on the varnish in will ‘frost up’… HSHP’s article specifically deals with the issue occurring when using the dipping technique, but the general rule applies for all varnish jobs gone bad… Well with keeping this little tip in the memory banks.
Ryan Davies is a member of the Crossfire Yahoo Group, and he recently put together a document detailing his techniques for painting and basing his 1/72nd scale figures – as a way to give something back to the wargaming internet community which he believes has helped him a lot over the years with his wargaming efforts. Ryan details how to cut bases from brass with a jewellers saw, his technique for labelling & indentifying his bases, and storing them.
Ryan then moves onto painting, especially soft plastic figures, covering how to paint, shade and seal them. He covers the merits of just brands of commonly available model paint, and the moves on to the actual techniques for basing the figures.
One of the really great Model Manufacturers around is MMS Classic Models – they produce some really high quality World War 2 vehicles and guns for 20mm scale (I believe they are nominally very accurate 1/76th scale on par with Milicast and Cromwell – but don’t quote me on that). Anyway on their site they list all their packs numerically rather than by Nation or any other logical order – this drives me mad!
So I’ve done my own listing sorted by Nation and then logically within each Nation by type of pack.
Recently I’ve been looking at the Friend or Foe (FoF) figure range from Shell Hole Scenics. However there is a marked lack of photos to compare the figures. Enquires on the web such as at the 20mm Miniatures Yahoo Group generally just resulted in limited feedback and several enquires back about what the figures looked like! I have picked some up indirectly and got the following photos of them for comparison. As it seems the manufacturer has very limited photos on their website (although Peter at Battlescape the Australian distributor does have some) I thought I’d put these images up for the benefit of anyone interested.
The following is a brief overview of several (but by no means all) of the manufacturers in this scale. Over time I may add more photo comparisons and details for these and other manufacturers. I have also included some plastic figures for completeness. The scale lines in the background are at 10mm, 20mm, and 25mm height.