I’ve had my SU-85’s almost finished for a few weeks now, and managed to spend some time last week doing the finishing touches like the saws and exhausts.
I’m very happy with these have come out. When I was painting them I though I had gone a little bit heavy with the final white oil paint step and thought that I had lost a lot of the colour depth that the earlier stages added, but the matt varnish brought it all together and darkened out greener areas and added some of the contrast back in.
For those of you with eyes for details, you’ll notice that there is a mix of SU-85s and SU-85M tank killers here. I deliberately painted a mix of models for 2 reasons.
1. I thought it would be more interesting to paint slightly different models.
2. It fit my overall theme of a cobbled together regiment of whatever was found at the depot.
Besides, they look so similar that I feel comfortable fielding them as either/or and will just tell my opponent what they are on the day. With these completed I’ve now started working on the core of my force, my T-34s, and should have the first platoon finished in a couple of weeks.
It feels like it has been a very long time since I’ve put up a post talking about what I’ve been painting and with such a big gap it would make sense that whatever I’m showing today should be impressive, have lots of models, and be very complex!
Yeah… well… about that. Today I am happy to share that I have finally finished my Universal Carrier Platoon. Yep, that’s right, a whole Universal Carrier Platoon of three vehicles. Now it isn’t that these were hard models to build or paint (quite the opposite in fact) but rather I’ve kept having other projects pushing in front.
These three models are a definite must have in any British force so I really should have knocked them out a bit sooner but I was getting distracted by all the tanks.
Now that they are done I can look forward to painting some more Churchills – everyone needs a company of them right. Of course I will need to paint up another Platoon of Carriers at some point because the D-Day: British book and Command Cards have some interesting options that mean I will want another unit.
Since I finished my first platoon and finalised my painting process, my painting has become a bit quicker.
I really enjoyed painting these T-70s, they are a beautiful kit to but together and have lots of detail, with some nice large areas for streaking and weather effects for such a small tank.
Game-wise the T-70s fill the same role in the Soviet army as Stuarts do in American Armies, they are there to harass light armour and infantry. With Front Armour 4 the enemy has to dedicate some decent anti-tank to take them out, which means that they aren’t shooting my T-34s. With Side Armour 2 they will also be okay in assaults as well as long as I’m careful.
At only one point each its quite easy to fit a small platoon into an army.
In my list I’m going to take a Hero T-70 Platoon of three as support. I would take them in my formation except that I am going to fill out all of my tank options in my formation with Hero T-34 Tank Platoons.
Hero T-70 platoons only have the option for three tanks, but I ended up painting four as that’s what came in the Soviet Starter Set. I’ll probably make the fourth tank into an objective at some point.
Over the past couple of years I have been playing a lot of Team Yankee and one of the things that I’ve found quite fun, is building and painting aircraft / helicopters. They give you a chance to paint something quite different, use (generally speaking) a new colour pallete, and try out some different techniques.
For the British, the aircraft of choice in Fortress Europe is the good old P-40 Warhawk. For me, this did not feel like an iconic aircraft choice (for the British) which meant I could either, paint something else in the short term, or, paint something in advance…
I decided to paint something a little early, grabbing a pair of Typhoons (which are in D-Day: British) and putting my much delayed Carriers on hold for a bit longer. The Typhoons (or Tiffy / Tiffies) pack a lot of firepower with 20mm cannons as well as rockets that are more than capable of taking care of heavy armour.
The models were fun to paint, especially since I was able to play around with some masking tapes to try and get the invasion stripes on the wings and fuselage vaguely straight. Having painted them there are a few things I would do differently if I were to paint some more, but overall I think they add a really interesting unit to my army.
For many years these terms have struck fear in to Flames Of War opponents as British artillery pounded them in to submission – I even recall a play test game around 10 years ago where my artillery gun line spent 90 minutes plastering the opposition. Oh what fun we had – “we” being me, and a couple of people watching!
The 25 pdr battery represents the last models I need to paint for FlamesCon, as well as the first 100 points of my official list!
I’d be lying if I said I was 100 percent happy with how these turned out – the guns and limbers look great (if I do say so myself), but of course they are not that different to tanks and I’m really happy with how my process is working for those.
The bases has come out better than expected. Combining two of the the plastic Rural bases together to make gun bases worked out well, and thanks to some thin plastic card and milliput they are nice and durable. I really like all the cool details on them (tree stumps, tire marks, fences etc), and they made the detailing of the bases very simple.
I was initially a bit unsure about my selection of flocks – I like to mix up custom mix for armies and I was going for a darker tone to represent the coming winter months at the end of 1944. In the light of day though I was quite happy with how the colours (a dark green static grass, and a couple of GF9 flock blends) all came together.
The weak point is certainly my painting ability when it comes to the gun crews. Ales, our sculptor, did a lovely job on them and I don’t think I have really done them justice. However I am very happy with the overall result and think that the whole army will look great on the table.
Time to get my Universal Carrier crews painted and I’ll be able to put another unit in the “Done” column…
It’s taken a while, but I’ve finally finished my first platoon.
As I said one of my previous posts, I’ve decided to tackle my own personal white whale – a winter washed army. I’m really happy with the results (despite the rest of the Big Four painting 100 points in the same time) and I think that it sets a really good standard for me to keep whilst I work on the rest of my army.
For me though its all about the journey, and I don’t mind spending a lot of time on a few models.
I had a lot of fun painting these and learnt a lot, which should make painting the rest of the army faster.
I’ve put together a painting guide for how I completed the whole whitewash effect and will post it up later this week.
The next platoon on my painting table will be some T-70s.
My American army is growing nicely and I have a few unit options now for list building. To add something new to the arsenal I decided to complete some air support; a pair of P-47 Thunderbolts!
As with most historical painting projects I tackle, I first spend a lot of time in Google image search. I hadn’t looked into American WW2 aircraft much before, and only really had the Flames Of War box cover examples to go by. I wanted to see what else was out there, and found quite a few examples with a simple yellow canard and not many other markings.
I liked the bare metal look which made these a nice break from painting olive drab vehicles.
I did however learn that the anti reflective strip down the top of the fuselage was sometimes olive drab instead of black, so this was a nice way of tying them in to the rest of my force.
I’ve never used aircraft in a game before so I’m looking forward to trying them out and seeing if they can help me deal with those pesky Tigers!
When working on my 105mm Howitzers I wanted to give them a lot of spent shells to show they’ve been busy!
Here’s how I did it.
I decided to use plasticard rod as it’s easy to cut to the length I need. You could instead use brass rod. This would have advantage of being the right colour so wouldn’t require painting, but the downside is it’s a lot harder to cut (especially when doing a lot of shells!) and the cuts will often need to be filed smooth.
I used the loader figure that comes with the guns to approximate the thickness of the rod I’d need, and how long to make them. You could be extra expert and convert the real world measurements to 1/100!
To make them easy to paint, I mounted them to a popsicle stick with double sided tape. This holds them fairly well along as you don’t go too heavy with the brush work.
To paint them I brushed on black primer (but you could spray them) and then did two coats of Vallejo Brass.
Once dry I removed them from the mounting, and painted the end that was stuck down with black, to emulate the hollow end of a spent shell. I also went around the edge with brass again.
All that’s left to do is glue them onto the bases with superglue. I chose to do it after flocking and really push them into the grass.
Hopefully this helps you get your artillery teams looking the part on the table. You could also use this method for spent shells on mobile artillery engine decks!
Click on the image to the left for a much bigger version…
The last unit I have painted from my Panzerkampfgruppe German Starter Force box is the 15cm Nebelwerfer Battery with 3x 15cm Nebelwerfers. This is worth 9 points and is a capable unit, giving good artillery stats against non-armoured targets like guns and infantry, as well as providing a Smoke Bombardment.
To fit the 9 points of Nebelwerfers in a 100 points game I’ll look at either trading the 8.8cm Heavy AA Platoon (6 points), the Panzergrenadiers’ Panzerfausts (2 points), and the Lucky Card (1 point), or more fundamentally changing the structure of my force by removing the Tigers (24 points), retaining the 88s and Panzerfausts, and making up the points with another unit of 3x Panzer IVs (16 points).
So I better look at painting that extra platoon of Panzer IVs then!
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