Monday, September 14, 2015

Painting Tanks! Progress! Projects! Pictures!

Lots of activity in the SOUND OFFICERS CALL bunker as some recent projects get into full swing!  Taking the Infantry Reorganization a bit further, I was finally able to start in on the Russians.  Summertime seems to me to be where projects go to die, as my second-summer, second failed "universal basing" attempt is laid to rest.  Permanently.

German Infantry based for the "Battlegroup" series.
In its wake we now have a basing scheme based on the tactical echelon I'm playing, instead of trying to find a "one size fits all" solution.  Additionally, with my plethora of various makes, the soldiers were looking a bit disorganized (PSC, Battlefront, Wargames Factory, Command Decision).

Still need to flock their personal stands but otherwise good to go.  Check out those helmet covers!
Therefore, a slight twist on the Infantry Reorganization - I will maintain a "skirmish platoon," about 30 to 40 figures, for each and every World War II force I field.  This enables me to have an "off the shelf" force based for games like "Bolt Action," "Chain of Command," "Disposable Heroes" or whatever I would like to play in a skirmish game.  I certainly have the figures to support this.

 The rest of the figures, and there are many, are folded up into "team sized" stands for games like Battlegroup: Kursk, I Aint Been Shot Mum, etc.  For German units, there is a 1 stand rifle section of 5, and an LMG section of 3.  For Soviet units, I have a squad composed of 2 stands, with 1 stand containing the DP LMG, and 1 squad containing the Squad Leader, just to differentiate it.  Still have to complete my DAK, SS, Americans, 8th Army Brits, and NW Europe Canadians...

Soviet Platoon (+) along with all the lovely support that BG Kursk says I gets!  

Soviet Bolt Action Platoon.  4 x 10 man squads, plus a Maxim, Lieutenant, and a senior officer stand.  As a personal preference, I based the LMG team on a separate stand.  It reminds me that the assistant gunner can't shoot.

Wet glue.
A "horde" of Ivans

This was a dramatic looking stand with the Peter Pig SMG'er.  This is the platoon commander for the Bolt Action platoon.

Soviets based for skirmish games.

Soviets based for Battlegroup Kursk and larger games.  Each 2 x stand grouping is  a single squad.
  Now the moment everyone has been waiting for.  My FINAL effort at doing these damn tanks and German camouflage.  I have been toying around with severe different schemes and I like the ones I've chosen pretty well.  These vehicles fluctuate between the "stippled, feathered edge" look of the Battlefront method, and also some I stole from other blogs.  I have a "spider web" one I've seen on vehicles from Kursk pictures (mostly Tigers and Elefants), a blobby green and brown late war, and of course Battlefront's soft-edged disruption lines that you all liked so much on my Hetzer.

And onto the tanks!!!

The colors make all the difference in the world.  This camo is "Not Chocolate Brown" and Vallejo "Reflective Green"  

I borrowed this design from "Stokie Steve" and a beautiful 1/72 Panzer III he did and posted to facebook. 
 The problem I ran into when using Stokie Steve's camo was my paint went on too thick and the dry-brushing picked up the ridges left behind by the paint brush.  I tried watering down the paint but it doesn't look as good.

Look at that!  A feathered edge!  Like I used an airbrush...almost.

The Panzer III M came out okay.  Not bad.  Not great.  But OK.  Still he's done.  Just need to seal him and decal him and seal him again and he's set for battle.

Not bad!  Looks good next to the infantry.  

A very simple KV-1 without decals right now.  He'll get the Guards treatment and his "ZA STALINA" or "RODINA!" treatment soon enough.

Tankovy Green is a lovely color.  Thanks Battlefront.  I have 3 cans now for almost all my soviet vehicles, including modern.

My "GrossDeutschland" skirmish platoon.  I am re-doing all their helmet covers.  Note the LMG crew based on separate stands.

The Hetzer makes an appearance!  Look at THOSE soft edged lines!

gratuitous tank shot

More tanks!
Congratulations if you've made it this far.  So by now you can tell I have my hands full with projects.  Here's what I've been working on as of late:

  • Redoing WWII German AFVs including all my halftracks (Mein Gott!)
  • WW2 Infantry Reorganization Project & Skirmish Units
  • Modern Infantry Reorganization Project (Team sized stands for Sabre Squadron)
  • 10mm Napoleonic rebasing for "Snappy Nappy" which I cannot wait to play!

Going into a really busy 2 weeks at work so I won't have much time to work on any of this.  I'm trying to get as much of the basic stuff done as I can.  Wish me luck and thanks for stopping by!

PS Paul OG your Soviet Forward HQs is done and ready for post.  Email me your address?

PPS David F I have your Vickers section bagged and ready to send.  If you have an extra Bren gunner, I'll gladly take him off your hands standing or prone...


  1. Love the feathered edge variant - I feel some copying about to happen for my 20mm stuff ;)

    I've had similar basing dilemmas myself recently with both the ww2 'battle' variant and the modern stuff. I've debated ripping troops from their 'pennies' and gluing them to stands or 'tacking' the pennied infantry onto pre-flocked bases.

    The jury is still out.

    1. Darren,
      Sounds like you're in the exact spot I was in for over 2 years, and many, many, MANY re-basing projects. The issue for me was figuring out just what rules I wanted to play more of. Given my personal preferences, there is no universal method for me so I'm going to base team size bases on roughly FOW sized bases, then have my ready-made skirmish platoons if I want to use them.

      So instead of painting and basing per scale or per rules set, I'm basing them based on tactical echelon. So if I'm playing a skirmish or platoon game, I have a platoon of guys on "pennies" and if I'm playing a larger game encompassing a bigger battlefield, I have my team sized stands (they could be individual squads using Grant's BATTLE or my old "Combat Team" rules). The bigger sized stands can represent anything I want, whereas the individual based stands are obviously 1 Soldier.

      A few posts back, I posted the link to the Flames of War tutorial, although if you go into Youtube and type in the search "Painting the Stug from the Open Fire Box" you'll find it. I recommend using a "practice panzer" first and trying it a few times.

  2. Very fetching work Steven. Those schemes look like they were done by a pro. Top notch progress mate.

    1. Thanks Paul, you're too kind! Copious amounts of basecoat over and over again, covering up my previous botched attempts.
      Thank you for sending me those great resources for the camo patterns. Hopefully I can replicate some of these!

  3. OMG you found HIM! Your Soviet Platoon Commander for your Bolt Action Platoon is the guys from AH's "Cross of Iron" cover (Squad Leader). I bought that when it came out and still have it in my collection. It was always one of my favourite Rooskie leader poses!

    Can you remember which manufacturer that came from?

    Thanks indeed for finishing off the Soviet HQ bases - it will take pride of place in my Shock Assault Army Comrade! Email inbound

    I agree with the above comments- your Panzer Colours and came effects are superb. I like how you have different schemes and effects in your inventory, just like the real Divisions did.

    1. Paul,
      I know exactly what pose you're talking about! I may have extras of this fellow. I will check to see if there are any - the maker was Battlefront (Flames of War). I bought a Strelkovy Company box waaaay back in late 2007 early 2008 and it included some of these guys - I think I may have more. I will find out and get back to you ASAP.

      Speaking of which - definitely PM me your mailing address. I would like to send your command stand out Wednesday or Thursday. There might be one or 2 other surprises in there as well. I'm proud that I will have a component of my forces operating in your Army! That alone is a really neat concept.

      As far as the German camo thank you Paul. I am still seeing what I like and most importantly what I can replicate. It's been alot of trial and error. There are so many basecoats covering up mistakes on these guys that their detail is starting to go away lol!

    2. Thanks mate! Did you get my email ok?

  4. Some great looking camo schemes! I really like the PzKpfw IV (tactical #402). Don't think I have any spare Brens at the moment though. :-)

    1. Thank you, David. #402 was my favorite as well! To get all this right, it took me layer after layer of basecoat and trials to get everything correct. The "stipple" method really works well but for me it's hard to replicate it and I think I need much more practice.
      #402 was a battlefront scheme I saw on the Flames of War website that had a ton of late war Panzer IVs so I went with it and I like it alot. I have to make due without an airbrush!

      If you find any Brens, any at all, feel free to send my way! I am never ordering from Warweb again and I refuse to buy a bag of 50 just to field a platoon that has 3 or 4 Brens in it! Right now I have so many DP LMGs I could field an entire force of them on the tabletop lol! If I save up enough money, I'll buy the PSC Late War British Box, which has everything you would need for a multiple-platoon force. I've just spent so much money on miniatures and paints the last few months that I can't buy anymore for awhile. Like Christmas lol.

      I'm posting your Vickers team today, along with a few British extras...