It’s been a while since my last post, and I apologize. I’m not sure I have a very good reason. Maybe it’s because of the demise of my old blog. There were lots of cool things I could do with it I don’t feel I can do here. I’m fiddling with a couple of the widgets that aren’t quite as handy as those on blogger. Maybe that will help.
Another problem I’m facing is that for some reason I don’t feel quite as comfortable in the hobby as I have for the past 40 years. I don’t think it’s necessary a problem with the hobby as it is with me. I still love to paint, but gaming has become a bit more problematic. There are many serious issues brewing in the family that have taken my time-my aging mother-in-law, some work issues, even some kid issues-that divert me elsewhere. It’s sad, but I guess I shouldn’t keep me from telling about what I’ve got going on.
So, in recognition of this, my New Years resolution is to post at least once per week. This is post number one.
I have painted some planes over the Christmas holiday.
First, I finished the Lancasters and Tonys I mentioned in my December 10th post. They both posed some interesting problems, but honestly they were a pleasure to paint. And that’s good because I have another hundred or so lying around that need finishing.
The Lancasters posed some special problems painting. The first was that straight line I whined about in my previous post. However, in my earlier incarnation as an airplane painter I acquired some goodies to help me, and I still had a roll of masking tape, the modeler’s variety, that allowed me to get a straight black line separating the upper wings and fuselage from the lower. It turned out pretty well all things considered. Another problem I had were the Tallboy bombs glued to the bottom of the plane. It was in the very place the peg needed to be drilled in order to properly distribute the weight of the plane. In the end, I was able to carefully drill the hole in the right spot without popping the bomb off the plane. Just gotta take your time. Another problem with the big bomber was its very size. The Lancaster was a really big plane for WWII and the miniature in 1/300 is broad and weighty. balancing things to paint the underside-few details that needed special attention thankfully-but things always seemed to be shifting and slithering away from the paint brush. Last, but not least (and not complete) the darkness of the plane, while great for avoiding night fighters at night, don’t show off the decals at all. I put large roundels on the wings, but the roundels and lettering that should go on the fuselage are, at this moment, absent because they would be invisible. I’m not talented enough to actually paint the little boogers on by hand, so I’m still searching for an answer.
The Tonys were more fun to paint than I thought they’d be. This popular Japanese Army fighter served through most of the war chiefly as an interceptor. The all silver fellows were easy to paint and are members of an air-ramming group that defended Tokyo against B-29s. The mottled versions are based on an illustration in Flying Colors. They were a little tricky to manage, but honestly with planes so small it’s only important to get the general idea of the green on silver.
The last pictures I want to share are of the Shapeways racers I’ve gotten. I’ve received eight and painted two. The two I’ve finished are the Keith Ryder planes San Francisco and Bumblebee. I’m only sharing a picture of Bumblebee. Working with the miniatures can be maddening. The planes are well cast, but the wings are quite thin and strong. However, the castings are rough, as in bumpy/not smooth. I did take some sandpaper to them with little discernible effect, and I was afraid to drag out the sander on my Dremel tool lest they melt the surfaces. So, I’m doing the best I can. The next two to be painted will be the Wedell–Williams racers with their fiddly struts, etc.
For the time being, however, I’ve gone back to my 28mm figures. I’m in the middle of some 28mm Maryland militia artillery for the War of 1812. I’ve got some guns on order for them, so I’ll five fabulous sections of artillery for Bladensburg. I’m also preparing some pavisiers from the HYW for priming. These will be my first new units for the new year.