The Christmas break had me doing a lot of reading and preparation for games but not actually doing much playing or modelling. The continuing search for ‘just the right’ ruleset for platoon level WWII action has led me to Chain of Command by Too Fat Lardies. The reviews are good and it is geared precisely to the personal scale I am after. What I like most about it is the emphasis on facilitating historically accurate small unit tactics, not just in getting models on the table and letting them run around with mechanisms based on imagination. Not that I am opposed to such rules, when they are for pulp or fantasy, but not for historical.
Anyway, Modelling has been quiet and this had to change. Over the last week I have been weathering some armoured vehicles for my platoon of Waffen SS bastards as they take part in Operation Barbarossa. These vehicles are 1:43 scale diecast, a scale that I think works just fine for the obese dwarfs that are typically 28mm metals. If 28mm men were truly 1:56 proportioned I would have to go with the WarLord 1:56 tanks because they are beautiful models. But to my eye they look absurdly out of scale with the men.
And so here is my SdKfz.251 and PzKfW III. I did not change the as-delivered paint schemes and unit markings as I don’t think it matters that much. I’m painting for gaming not competition modelling.
The method is basically three-stage using the technique described to me by Alan. Starting with soft, chalky pastels, I scraped them into a palette for their powder, then mixed this with acrylic thinners. This wash is applied and when the thinners evaporates the powder appears as if by magic. This is recommended by the cognoscenti to be a white-spirit or turps job, but those chemicals melt plastic…
In any case the thinners seemed to work. I first created a rather orange rust colour. Then matt varnished to hold it in place. Then I ran uneven lines along exposed edges in a burnt sienna (or GW Dark Flesh) colour. This is the exposed rubbed rust. Then I mixed up a pale sandy colour for dust. I went heavy on the dust. Before the rain and snow came apparently the dust was a major problem. Again sealed. And then I ran a soft graphite pencil along the places where human and hands and feet would have rubbed the area smooth. Finally I smudged some black for soot around the engine and cannon muzzle. Then sealed it again, finally.
It’s not a professional job. I can see many faults with the final work, but it satisfies my need to be modelling and continues to the GenKillBarb project. I have a kubelwagen, SdKfz.222 and 231 still to go.