Thursday, 28 April 2016

Grymn Flier - XII

All camouflage work done. Most of the details complete or just blocked in black.

Still to do : Metal coat on the diamond plate, edge highlighting of all the panels (urgh! - I hate that bit!), winter weathering.

The picture shows the 8 year old paint job I am trying to match on the largest APC.

Thursday, 21 April 2016

Grymn Flier - XI

A flier and a couple of old crow vehicles. Camouflage laid down and (just because I couldn't resist) masking removed to see the green windscreen.

Lots more weathering and detail painting with the hairy stick to be done.

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Grymn Flier - X

Group shot of the vehicles. All the 'glass' areas have been airbrushed and blacked out then highlighted up with white ready for either a blue or green glaze. I'm pretty happy with how the airbrush highlight turned out. Once the windows have been complete I shall varnish and then mask them out to paint the camouflage on the main body.

After this the blue Tamiya translucent blue all went a bit wrong - it really is a nightmare to get a smooth thin coverage. Grrr... so back to the black and white highlight by airbrush and a change of direction.

I decided to go for a green tint rather than blue as the general tone of the camouflage scheme is blue-grey so this should stand out more.

Now I have to try and find my bottle of liquid mask...

Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Grymn Flier - IX


Ok so it's only three swatches of colour. It's nothing to write home about. But I have found the colour recipe for the original winter camouflage scheme. Not bad after only 8 years!

Host of the Silver Bear - I


It has long been a desire of mine to do two things with my Dwarf and Orc armies
  1. Have suitable figures to fight both huge epic battles and small, personal skirmish encounters using the same forces. Imagine a host o stout dwarven warriors arrayed against the ravening hordes of a truly gargantuan orc horde. Thousands of figures each side where strategy, tactics and the ability to command are paramount.
    Now zoom in to a small section of that battlefield - a key building that the dwarfs must hold or the tidfe of the entire battle turns. Look at the handful of stalwart do-or-die warriors prepared to stay put until the last swing of their axes to give their king their all. Can they hold out? Will the whole massed battle turn on the decision of the orc warparty leader to charge in? will a single dice roll turn the whole encounter?
    You get the drift i think...
  2. Have a single force that is represented over the eons in history(?) and technological advancement, so the history of a single unit is represented from dark/medieval fantasy through the ages to the far flung future of star striding science fiction. The history and
My attempts at 1 are long and slow. I have the 1,000 figures of dwarfs and orcs that would make any self respecting gaming table groan under the weight of good old lead. I admit I haven't painted many! But there are outlets for 6mm fantasy miniatures where I could - given the inclination, time and money - establish a few thousand figures either side. Its possible. Its a goal. I need goals.

This thread of blog posts is more about item 2 and my long ignored yet first love - DWARFS.


My nom de plume "Brandlin" was an ICE RoleMaster/MERP character from back in the 1980's. He lead a varied life in a number of Tolkienesque high fantasy settings which found him hatching dragon eggs, going insane, repelling gravity, annoying the party's elven spellcaster, and hitting stuff - mostly with a large morning star. He later went on to be a protagonist in a number of games I GM'd both over the table and in play by (e)mail. He became a leader of a group of "Dwarf Supremacists" fell in love with an Elven Dragon Mistress, was driven insane by a spellcasters necklace and gathered quite a following. Eventually amassing an army sizable enough to declare himself king (through rather dubious second-cousin thirteen times removed kinship rules) and set about taking back that pesky mountain. He was last seen "Doing a Gandalf" and bravely/stupidly delaying a marauding fire demon whilst the cowardly elves and humans ran. (In my head he was always going to come to the rescue in book two - there has just been a very long delay in publication).

It is Brandlin that is and always shall be the leader of my Grenadier Fantasy Warriors Dwarf army. I imagined him setting up a dynasty that lived long long into the future, through the industrial revolution, the information age and out into the far future and distance worlds of space. These far flung descendants are represented by my Hassle Free Grymn Army (with Old Crow vehicles and "The Drop Ship").

Yes, yes I know that I've finished very little, haven't painted in ages and haven't rolled a dice in even longer. But I thought I'd share how in my mind the whole thing fits together.

My FW Dwarf army includes a couple of regiments of the wonderful bear riders and (the only non FW figures) three of the old Ral Partha sleds pulled by three bears. I have always intended painting these as polar bears and taking the Bear as a symbol for the whole army.

So, without further ado, welcome ....

The Host Of The Silver Bear

Colour Scheme

My colour scheme of choice has also long been a turquoise / teal (for you blokes out there, that's a greeny blue, and for the computer literate its a dark cyan colour) and white. The Foundry Triad of these shades is my chosen go to colour. I like the fact this isn't the usual blue or red scheme most dwarfs get, and I also like the cold nature of the colours along with the white/silver. Gold will feature sparingly and used instead of silver to identify elite units, leaders and other notable persons.


Sigil? Yes, I've been watching too much Game of Thrones but I think Sigil sounds sexier than 'Emblem' or 'Banner'. I want to tie the two armies together with more than just colours.

Dwarfs have round shields. Don't argue with me on this, its just true. You wont find anything less round than an squat ellipse in my dwarf shields. And with units of bear cavalry I ahve long thought that a simple design of a bears paw would make a great emblem.

As its a fantasy army I think a differing range of these symbols would be best, tied together by the general theme rather than a slavish copy of each one. I'm imagining these in teal on white, white on teal and possibly with halved and quartered backgrounds. Heraldic rules? meh!

I like the celtic and stylised tribal Tattoo styles and think this might even be an extreme ornate version of the symbol for war leaders.
For the more organised forces of the Grymn I think a standardised symbol will be best and recreated on each vehicle. Perhaps the left most of the paw prints above, or even...

I shall be doing some work on these images and scaling and colouring them appropriately and then getting a range of different water slide decals printed. (I'd do them myself, except i will need to print white and that requires an ALPS printer).


No self respecting fantasy army takes the field without  the mass fluttering of banners, standards and pennants. This gives plenty of opportunity to add bear related symbols for different units, all in the similar white/teal theme.

Runes and Additional Markings

For additional fantasy unit markings I shall use the Angerthas (Cirth) runes from tolkien (obviously)

I shall make certain phrases in decals and maybe use individual markings for each unit.

However I have come across two problems.
  1. I cannot find anywhere that has numerical runes. (I may have to 'invent' them - something simple like a tally system). I want 
  2. I can get a FONT of runes easily - this makes it simple to 'type' out phrases and alter point sizes in the designs etc. However I'd like a more science fiction style font version of the same basic shapes - something that looks like its a stencil shape for vehicle markings in particular. This kind of thing - but runic!
 Anyway, that's my thinking and research to date. Plenty to do. No rush.

Sunday, 17 April 2016

Grymn Fliers - VIII

Thought I'd clean the airbrush. And then clean the airbrush. And then for a change, clean the airbrush some more.

And then put some undercoat on the fliers and other models. This is an all over coat of grey primer, followed by Zenithal undercoat - black shot on the underside of the models and a thin white coat shot from the top down. I've never done this before, but it's intended to show through the top coat so that you get a more natural shading of the model colours. I remain to see if this affects my painting.

All the models here other than the fliers are from Old Crow Models.

Saturday, 16 April 2016

Grymn Flier - VII

All three in the Squadron ready for paint...

Shown with interchangeable (left to right) radar/comms pack (2), cannon (2) and missile rack.

Friday, 15 April 2016

Grymn Flier - VI

Landing gear and tail fin complete.

Tail is made from three sheets of styrene laminated together and then sanded into a vaguely aerofoil cross section. Its attached with three struts made from paperclips.

 ... and on its mobile landing pad.

 I have the other two to finish and then its on to paint.

Thursday, 14 April 2016

Grymn Flier - V

Current thinking on the tail.

Yes, i know that using CAD is a bit of overkill for this, but its a very quick way of sketching up a number of possible shapes and seeing how they look.

Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Grymn Flier - IV

First attempt at a simple frame for the landing gear. Clearly needs more detailing and also to straighten the lower rail. I shall add "skids" from strip plasticard to the bottom too.

I'm not sure...


Monday, 11 April 2016

Old Crow Recon Units - I

As well as the fliers I have been detailing up some Old Crow Gecko and Goanna Scout Vehicles as reconnaissance and light fast transports for my Grymn.

I'll post progress on painting over the coming days.

Grymn Flier - III

I think I have solved the issue of the weapon mount for the fliers.

The barrel is a little long, but can easily be reduced... it swivels left to right but not up and down. I think that's OK as a wargame model. This mount means its not as low as I thought it might be, so the landing skids wont need to be as tall! result!!

I found this by sorting through my Old Crow 'bits box'. (yes I have a bits box just for old crow! - although I think it has some Zinge Industries flexible cables, gears and and hatches in there too...)

Contents :

I have a lot of modular turret parts that I shall be sorting through in order to create some options for the large number of old crow vehicles I own.

Grymn Flier - II

A word of warning.

Never. EVER. Feed a work in progress model after midnight*. They multiply...

So my small flotilla of Grymn Fliers are taking shape...

Each of them has twin rotors, a magnetised mount for a forrad under-nose weapon mount, and a fixed mount at the rear for a fying base.

Still to do:
  • Landing system - Skids or wheels? I'm thinking skids for simplicity - there are two moulded holes in the cockpit sides that would work to put helicopter style skids into probably made from bent/soldered brass rod. Landing gear will need to be quite high to prevent the nose weaon from grounding, also quite wide to allow the nose weapon to turn. I'm hoping this will be a 'good thing' and it will lend the flier a feel of a flying insect and add to its small, one man, light fragile nature.
  • Weapon system - I'm hoping some 15mm Old crow single weapon mounts will scale ok the 25mm ones i have are way too big! This will mean i can mount a small cannon or a missile pack or even a comms package to the front.
  • Tail fin - I'm struggling to get a shape for this that I like. As there are twin rotors (which would rotate in opposite directions) there is no need for a long tail with a stabilising rotor. So a simple directional fin will suffice. It will need to project rearwards to balance out the bulk of the cockpit forwards, but I'm not going to add a rigid tail. I'm thinking something that looks like it would be at home on a modern day microlight would be ideal. Its also somewhere to add a squad/vehicle identifying marks.

For those of you that are curious I have a couple of pics showing scale.

The only figure scifi figure I have easy access to is a Hasslefree Grymn Trooper (centre) for which these fliers are designed. That's a little over 22mm tall and I think fits the cockpit comfortably.

The two other figures here are from Wyrdd and Rackham, they are in the 32-35mm+ size. I think these cockpits would be tight and small for something of the GW Space Marine size. I think other more slender 28mm scaled figures would be OK but a little tight - emphasising the 'light' nature of the craft.

The cockpits would accommodate 2 x 15mm figures side by side or even behind the other. I shall be painting the cockpit glass so have made no attempt to model an interior.

Hope that helps.

More soon...

* Rumour suggests that getting them wet or exposing them to day light may also be a bad idea.