Sunday, June 28, 2015

6MMRPC Week Four: 8.8cm FlaK 36 Objective

Finally some progress to report! Now that the wife is back in town I was able to put some hours into the Historicon projects.  The first of my entries into the painting contest is now done.  As previously mentioned, I've been working on this objective intermittently since 2009.  It never quite matched any of my planned out armies and spent most of that time with the crew converted and primed, but that's as far as they got.
The objective tells the story of a static 8.8cm FlaK position somewhere in the rear areas.  The crew has scored their first shoot-down vs. a B-17 of the USAAF and is posing with a piece of the wreckage.

'Kentucky Jim' wasn't so lucky.
I used all Battlefront minis and scratchbuilt elements, as the rules for the contest require it.  The crew are nearly all modified, only the two on the right are not changed.  The guy on the left is a British SP artillery crewman with a head swap and resculpted sleaves, the NCO in the back was a bailed out crewman who received new legs and repositioned arms and head, the center crewman is a DAK tank commander with added legs, and the Oberleutnant with the camera was an artillery crewman who had his arms repositioned and a camera added.  The gun had its support legs removed and I built a wooded deck around the now concrete mount.  I had to magnetize the gun for transport.  The B-17 panels were scratchbuilt from heavy aluminium foil, using spare decals.

Inspiration for the decking.
Cut-down mount, magnetized, and the structure of the decking.  Balsa stock and planks cut to fit.
Decking and ground work in place, the mount is pushed back to give some space.  Vallejo pre-colored ground materiel,  AK washes.
8.8cm FlaK 36 on a donor mount, fresh from the airbrush booth, after two layers of Mig filters and an AK pin wash.
Crew painted and mounted, ammo and rangefinder in place.
After getting the crew and other items placed, I added a few wbits of grass, growing under the decking and a few clumps at the back.  I'm not a huge fan of the bare-earth look, but that's how these flak positions were historically.  Used several colors of dry pigments to break up the uniform look.  The wreckage panel was scrathbuilt from a piece of heavy aluminum foil from the top of a milk bottle, cut and scribed, rivet marks and panel lines added.  I scrounged up some appropriate decals from an old Gear Krieg model, really wanted a scantily-clad pin up girl, but no luck.  'Kentucky Jim' sounded plausible.  I also cut a piece of plastic film to fit the window.  Might try to add 'something to that big empty area but not sure what might work.  May also try to fit in a zeltbahn for interest.  
Some finished shots:  

Monday, June 22, 2015

6MMRPC Week Three: 8.8cm FlaK WiP

The Objective entry into the Historicon painting competition is nearly finished, really wanted to get it wrapped up by tonight but the kids have kept me very busy all week.  Thankfully my wife gets back in a few days and I'll be able to find more hours to commit.  I decided to represent a static 8.8cm flak mount with a concrete base and wooden plank work area.  The balsa came from some leftover sections of bridge fom last years display board and were stained with several different thin enamel washes.  The ground texture came from Vallejo and was washed with AK Interactive products.  I still plan on doing a basic three-color camouflage on the gun and also decided to strip and repaint the crew I had nearly finished.  They were started years ago and they didn't quite match the fifth guy I painted this week.  A few ammo boxes were painted and are basically done, sans detailing.  The rounds need some more work as well.  This should be completed by the next update.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

6MMRPC Week Two: Another Display Board

Display boards have become a staple at Historicon and I need to put together a new one for my Early War list I'm bringing to FoW Nationals.  Because of several factors I haven't had time to paint a Japanese force for the event and have had to reuse the Fallschirmjägers from two years ago. The list is a glider-borne assault pionier list at 1390 points.

I still need to paint a platoon of four 3.7cm PaK36s, an 8cm Gw34 mortar stand, an observer team and an Objective, plus three more 8cm mortars to swap onto the existing stands so they are the correct type.  The display board will be mounted into the frame I used last year, and I had the MDF and foam left over and ready to go. Some of the bases for the FJ have cobblestones and I wanted to have a section of the board match but I also wanted to match the rubble bases as well. Part of the board will have a bombed town and the other part will be a farm / vineyard.  Since these are glider troops I also want a landed DFS 230 on the board, in the vineyard. Some wall sections I picked up from the swap meet at Historicon will do nicely as accent pieces and will go with my previously constructed Objective.

Basic layout so far, the cobbled road will run along the walled courtyard. 
Wanted to get more done this week but the wife is on temporary military duty out of state and my boys have kept me busy. Next week I'll have some paint to show. Promise!

Also, thanks to Battlefront for mentioning my blog on their website!  I'm greatly humbled that anyone there has noticed this little hobby log of mine. 

Sunday, June 7, 2015

6MMRPC Week One: Historicon Painting Competion

My first week of the 6MMRPC was a quiet one, my son's fifth birthday took most of my attention.  Wargames Illustrated has co-hosted the Historicon Painting Competition since 2013, and are doing so again this year.  There will be ten categories, and I plan on entering my work into three of them; Open, Flames of War Platoon, and Flames of War Objective.  I've done very well in both years so far, winning the Iron Cross for Best Flames of War entry twice, and three other awards in category.  Let's see if I can continue the streak!
So far, I'm planning on entering a Saving Private Ryan- inspired diorama using Flames of War minis in the Open category, which allows for models, vignette, or diorama measuring 8" x 8" x 8".  I built Battlefront's Hollywood Tiger special Nationals objective marker, a tounge-in-cheek reference to the old movie practice of building a 'Tiger' on a T-34 chassis.  This technique was famously used in Saving Private Ryan and Kelly's Heroes, among other films.  I used the cupola from the early-model Tiger I to match the one used in the film, replaced the fenders which were actually too detailed, and added a few bits of stowage and appropriate decals as well.  So far, I've got the 'Tiger" base-coated, camoflauged and washed, as well as the Kettenkrad and BMW combo from the final bridge scene.  I've also kit-bashed up a Captain Miller figure, but need to fill some gaps still.

You can see the funky Soviet tracks and boxy front end and fenders.
First attempt at a Tiger with the airbrush, think the camo turned out pretty good.  Details next.
The bridge scene shows these two broken-down German vehicles, they will be included.  Capt. Miller in progress.
The beast.
I will also be entering into the Flames of War Platoon and Objective categories, not sure what I'll enter into the Platoon category, but it'll be something I've already painted, maybe my Luftwaffe troops.  In the Objective category I will be entering something I've been working on off-and-on for years, a propaganda photographer getting an 8.8cm Flak36 crew to pose for a shot, maybe with some newly earned award or something.  I have the crew mostly finished, but they still need details, and I may add a few more kneeling crewmen.  I pushed the gun back and removed the rear legs as I thought it looked a bit cramped.

I'll add some ammo crates, etc. for the middle guy to lean against, plus some other items.
These will be the first FoW items I'll work on, have about six weeks until the competition.