15mm

Trying Out Tanks 

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Having recently bought the Bolt Action armoured fury boxed set, and am finishing off building the models for that over Christmas, I also picked up Battlefronts Tanks spin-off game. Using some basic tanks, you get three kits in the box: two Shermans and a Panther.


I’ve made up the Panther and Shermans (as 76mm versions to give them a chance against the Panther), and will be giving this a go over Christmas, and reporting back! 

Team Yankee Tank Build

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While this is largely a WW2 Wargaming blog, the best of us get diverted and having been excited about the prospect of the Cold War in 15mm with a new ruleset and some great plastic kits I was delighted to see all the coverage for the Team Yankee range online over the launch weekend.

My pre-orders arrived just after and this Christmas break has been the first opportunity to build some of the kits.

I started with the T-72 as I’d recently had a chance to climb all over a real one. There is a basic build sheet in the box but a more detailed guide online. It went together very well and easily, starting with the tracks and hull, and then the turret. The main gun fits well, and the only fiddly bits were the smoke dischargers. Once built it looked great.

I then had a go at the M1. I can remember these thundering around central Germany in the 80s and this is a very nice kit. It includes options for later M1 Abrams models which implies Battlefront is perhaps looking ahead with is kit but I built the 80s version. Again it went together very well, everything snugly going together and no filler necessary. The size of the model even in 15mm shows what a monster piece of kit this was and still is!


I can’t wait to paint these as they are great models and I look forward to getting some M113s and BMPs next year.

German Armour with Colours of War

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Had a productive summer painting some minis. Started to have a look at some 28mm Warlord figures but realised how big my 15mm backlog was so went back to them. Tried out the new Flames of War ‘Colours of War’ German armour paint set which comes with a big bottle of Panther Yellow as a basecoat plus a shade and some camo colours, although you need the green from the Quartermaster set to complete them. The paint went on well and this new range is really good. Quite happy with my usual ‘tabletop standard’ results.

The first photo above shows them with the base colours all painted and then the ‘after shot’ (below) of them weathered and dry-brushed. 

  

First Use of Colours of War Paints

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When I was at Salute 2015 I picked up from the Battlefront stand some of the new Colours of War paints and one of the new base sprays, as well as the new book about the paint range itself. These were not generally on sale at that point but last week was the first chance I’d had to use them so excuse this delayed review as I am sure many gamers are curious about them.

The paints come in boxes as they did before but the paints all now have different names and different codes.

Contents of the British Paints box
Contents of the British Paints box

I decided to try them out on a Flames of War Sherman from their plastic platoon box. I sprayed the Sherman with the new Firefly Green base spray. Having used some of the Plastic Soldier Company sprays (and liked them), this one is just as good and left a good even coating in a good basic colour as seen below.

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The paints themselves come in two sizes in the box; most are small bottles, but with one large. The paint bottles are designed to look like bullets and that is quite neat to be honest. The lids open easily and the paint is dispensed in a good mix; there did not seem a need to give them much of a shake like Vallejo paints. There is nothing on the packaging to say who makes these paints but they do seem different to Vallejo, so it appears they are indeed new and not just an exercise in re-packaging.

Colour of War Paints come in two sizes
Colour of War Paints come in two sizes

I then following the instructions in the book about the next stages of painting the tank; the painting guides in the book are really good and offer solutions for basic table top quality painting through to higher standards.

Painting Instructions in the Colours of War book
Painting Instructions in the Colours of War book

I’m a functional painter rather than a good one, but it was a pleasure to use these new paints which using the hints in the book gave a good result to the tank. The finished example is below.

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If this is what to come with the new paint range then I am delighted; they were better in my view than Vallejo, the box contained a good selection of relevant colours, and the paint was easily used and applied. Looking forward to using some more again soon.

 

Jagdpanzer IV Late War Tank Camouflage

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The German Panzer Museum in Munster has a staggering array of WW2 vehicles and visiting places like this helps to get a wider visual impression of the models we paint as well as offering inspiration to paint more realistic camouflage patterns. A quick scan of say painted 15mm WW2 German tanks on eBay shows a wide impression of what many believe camo on late war tanks looked like, but actual examples in museums can be very different to these models.

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This Jagdpanzer IV is a good example showing a common pattern of camouflage used. This was applied often by a tired tank crew and done with large, often dirty and grubby brushes, so there is room for interpretation: nothing was done to a template. The aim was to break up the uniform appearance of the tank and made it blend more with its surroundings, which is always worth bearing in mind when painting the models.

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The rear of the tank was often just in dunkelgelb as seen below.

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New Colours Of War Book from Battlefront

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Colours-of-WarAs a long term fan of Battlefront Miniatures’ Flames of War franchise – largely because it’s ‘easy’ to buy into for a lazy, real-life occupied old gamer like me – I was interested at Salute 2015 to pick up the new Colours Of War painting guide, one of the new sprays and a pack of the new paints.

It was announced over the winter that Battlefront were bringing in a new paint range and this was the first phase of it. I have yet to test the actual paints and when I do a review will follow here, but the book is in some respects a work of art in its own right. It follows the usual high production values of Battlefront and tackles some basic aspects of wargaming and painting miniatures and then goes into a country by country guide offering types on painting uniforms as well as tank camouflage. For an average miniature painter like me it is not too intimidating in the way some similar Games Workshop products are, and there are some really useful tips which I will be trying out.

The book cost me £15 at Salute and I have no idea of what it will retail at, but there is a page for it on the FoW website.

From 'Colours Of War' (FoW website)
From ‘Colours Of War’ (FoW website)

Welcome To WW2 Wargamer

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IMG_8396Inspired by the recent articles in Henry Hyde’s excellent Miniature Wargames magazine I decided to follow his advice and become a wargamer who embraced Twitter and the Blogosphere.

While the Blog is really just for me in the first instance, it is here to give some structure to my often sporadic interest in wargaming and let me put down a few ideas as I make models, paint figures and build some tabletops to recreate the battlefields of the Second World War.

I largely play Flames of War (but with no points system) and build 15mm scale WW2 models, but am looking to expand a bit this summer into 28mm.

See you on the tabletop and enjoy the Blog.