Here are four more useful-for-wargamers-and-modellers films that you can view directly for free on the British Pathe website, including my own notes about content:

ILLUSTRATED COMMUNIQUÉ FROM RUSSIA  Film ID:  1075.12 – It’s 1943. Lots of different Russian artillery in action! Lots of winter warfare footage – Russians in their white snowsuits. Footage was probably vetted by the Russians so nothing too ‘restricted’ could be seen by West.

ON THE DNIEPER  Film ID: 1350.24  – 1944. Lots of shots of Russians under heavy MG and artillery fire as they advance in actions around the Dnieper. Lots of Russian artillery in action. See combat engineers in action. A German tank knocked out comes under heavy small arms fire as its crew try to bail out.

ON THE MOSCOW FRONT  Film ID: 1314.15  – Early model T-34s and also a smaller tank going into action in the snow. Lots of different types of fortifications – barbed wire fences, anti-tank ditches, anti-tank gun emplacements in the city. For Soviet armoured train model enthusiasts…there’s plenty of footage here, close-ups and medium distance shots from multiple angles as well as the train’s guns firing as part of artillery barrages.

RED ARMY SUCCESSES  Film ID: 1085.10 – Like ILLUSTRATED COMMUNIQUÉ FROM RUSSIA above, lots of winter warfare footage. An SU-122 going past. Footage of Kursk after its liberation.

It was a big Sunday

June 29, 2009

The brewed-up T-34/85 wreck terrain piece is done! Here’s the base that it rests on: T3485 modular base

Here’s the inked, drybrushed and matt-varnish-sealed piece that you’ve all been waiting for: T3485 profile T3485 side

From the above, you’ve now had a good look at the home-made Rust blend that I made, combining Blood Red with Brazen Brass and the Brown Ink (R.I.P.). It doesn’t look so powerful here, because I’ve gone and applied two very heavy washes over it of the new Citadel pre-mixed Wash (or watered-down Inks, curse it), Ogryn Flesh. I should have just used one medium coat of Ogryn Flesh – you can see the Rust has become very brown from the washes. The Ogryn Flesh Wash has helped to take the shiny Bronze edge off the Brass particles, though…I’m tempted to keep this homemade Rust to use for mufflers and the like, where they recommend using a Rust – usually I’ve just used Boltgun Metal washed twice with Flesh Ink (R.I.P.). Have a look at the rear of the T-34/85: T3485 rear I think the rust on those mufflers has worked well.

I remember now where the idea for this terrain piece first came from – I was watching another wargame rules-set being played at NWA one night, where a good friend was learning to play. The objective for both sides was to reach a tank in the middle of the board (an ‘objective marker’). I have blended that idea with photo evidence from various ‘eyewitness’ books of the Eastern Front, where wrecked tanks were used as forward Artillery Observation Posts (because they were safe to be under when you were being shelled).

So, the terrain piece is done, as well as the two Revell Tiger I’s that were done as company command vehicles. Apart from having slightly different numbers on the side, an extra aerial added on the turret and MGs mounted for air defence, they aren’t any different to the four Tigers I’ve already got. This time they are perfect, since I knew what to watch for during construction. The one error I made (and was fixed) was discovered just as I was about to varnish them –  I realised I’d left the Balkenkreusz off both tanks. That set me back two hours.  The numbering advice I’ve used comes from here.

Hills! Yes, more terrain.

I was able to undercoat the two hills you’d seen me prepare previously. First, you need to get some pinboard tacks, ones that don’t go all the way in to the end: Before tacks

Begin to stick the tacks in, about an inch apart from each other and at least half an inch (or more if your hill has a gentle gradient) apart: mid tack I advocate using as many tacks as possible, as some always come out during undercoating or flocking: end tack

If your hills aren’t standing completely free of the surface they rest on, get better tacks and start again: resting

Now you can begin undercoating. I’m using good old Brown Kayak acrylic from Haymes, painting from the top of the hill downwards: begin undercoat You don’t have to apply it thickly, but you do want to completely cover everything: undercoat continued and it’s best to undercoat while holding them in one hand. When you’ve completely covered all the white, put it down and let dry for 24 hours: undercoated

Tonight (monday night) I applied on a second undercoat. This time I applied it quite thickly, but again, I made sure I covered everything – sometimes little air pockets are formed as you apply the first coat and they will be uncovered during the drying – get the brush bristles in there and paint them in well.

Sometime next weekend I’ll begin the flocking.

I also washed a number of sprues in detergent and very warm water, then air dried  them. I use an old coat-hanger, cut and reshaped, to hang them on: drying washed sprues

Next weekend (earlier if there’s a good, warm afternoon) I’ll undercoat them – then all these recon units can be commenced.