Gisby's Gaming Blog

September 9, 2022

VBCW: A9 Cruiser Tank Mk I

Filed under: 3D Printing, Paint and Glue Miniatures, VBCW — gisby @ 23:55

I admit, I have a fondness for multi-turret tanks. They look so much like kids’ fanciful drawings, yet someone, somewhere, thought they were a good idea. But they never turned out to be effective. So of course I will field as many as possible.

But the A9 is a bit of a problem. It has three turrets, and was the right era for VBCW, but had enough armour and speed that it served well into WW2, and wasn’t bad at it’s job.

That means that among my other tanks it’s a dash’t King Tiger. But I suppose that’s their problem. At least it still looks sort of clumsy. And it’s one of the few among my vehicles that could be there without a fair bit of hand-waving.

This model is a 3D print from Paint and Glue Miniatures. It’s a hull and three turrets, and I added a wire aerial. Aside from popping the turrets in place there was no further assembly needed. The print was clean and complete. (and a lovely pearlized mint green – I could hardly bear to prime it)

For more information on the A9 Cruiser Tank look here.

September 2, 2022

VBCW: Horse Guards

When North Star Military Figures announced they were releasing these figures, especially with a deal for a 10-figure unit, I knew I had to have them. Although intended for ‘steampunk’ I saw no appreciable difference between them and 1930’s (or indeed 2020’s) uniforms. Experts will no doubt point out dozens, but I generously ignore them.

Not only will these provide a colourful and interesting unit, but they will present as an old Britains toy soldier unit, adding to my joy as my various tanks, guns, and artillery are all stand-ins for they toys I could not afford as a child.

To this end, I needed all arms at the slope, and Nick did not fail me. He generously supplied me with that arms I requested, and followed up checking that all was OK. Great customer service as always.

I removed the cast-in-place trumpet banner and printed a new one on my computer. I also added a sword hilt to the trumpeter’s scabbard, as he had none.

There are two poses available, plus the officer and trumpeter. All except the officer share the same body. Each has a separate head and scabbard, and (except for the officer) sword/trumpet arms, The scabbard strap needs to be bent to fit but it is easy.

When they arrived, I wasn’t thrilled with the sculpting, the bodies looked sort of bulbous, and the proportions were off. Then I looked at actual troops, and the cuirass is bulbous and throws their proportions off. All in all, the sculpting is fine, and they paint up nicely.

Banner for Trumpeter – Print at 300 DPI

They are useful for VSF, VBCW, Pulp, whatever. They are nice figures.

August 22, 2022

VBCW: Burford-Kegresse Half Track

When I saw the Burford-Kegresse in a photo of manouevers in the 1920’s it was the first I had ever heard of it. It looked ungainly and awful, so I knew I needed it for my VBCW armies. I bought an STL file, and obtained permission to have it printed by a third party. (Paint and Glue Miniatures)

In real life, there was only a small batch made, and found wanting, they were scrapped in 1929. (They worked well enough, but the tracks, being a rubber/canvas composite, were prone to failing) I had thought they would just be a colourful piece of transport – imagine my surprise when I found they each had two (perhaps overscale) HMGs on a 360 degree mount. Suddenly they are a real threat.

They were also apparently difficult to print. Garry at Paint & Glue eventually printed the guns and mount separately in resin (I had ordered the cheaper plastic) to overcome the difficulties, and even threw in one of the ‘incomplete’ prints in case I wanted to use it as a wreck. It was complete enough that I was able to make a third half track.

But Garry went above and beyond on this commission.

The drivers and passengers are homemade, using blue stuff to cast putty bodies. The heads are Woodbine Designs WW1 heads, because all you really see of the drivers is their heads.

The gunners are Wargames Atlantic WW1 German officers, also with Woodbine heads. I had to narrow their shoulders to fit in the mounts, and fix the guns in place so I could remove the swivels (to widen the space for the gunners) The gunners are standing loose, held in place by the gun ring. The guns can rotate, and so can the gunners.

August 21, 2022

VBCW: Matilda I

Filed under: 3D Printing, Paint and Glue Miniatures, VBCW — gisby @ 03:16

Tanks, in general, look squat and powerful: The wide fenders and skirts disguise what is essentially an armoured box with tracks attached to the sides, carrying a deadly gun to the foe.

The Matilda I (Infantry Tank A11) is not such a tank. It is very obviously a narrow armoured box, suspended between rather frail-looking track assemblies, carrying a single machine gun into battle.

It was however, well-armoured, allowing it to slowly get close enough to the enemy to be not very effective.

But it is a perfect vehicle for VBCW, where it is not facing 88mm guns, and a mobile armoured machine-gun is a lovely thing to have.

This model is a two-piece 3D print from Paint and Glue Miniatures. They provide good service, and I recommend them.

For more information on the Matilda I look HERE.

August 19, 2022

VBCW/Great War: Renault FT

I bought this tank for several reasons: To go with the Wargames Atlantic WW1/2 French infantry, to bolster my VBCW forces, and because I really wanted one.

The FT (commonly called the FT-17) is one of the earliest ‘modern’ tanks, with a rotating turret atop a tracked hull. It was used by (and copied by) many nations in both WW1 and WW2.

This model is a 3D print from Butler’s Printed Models. He offers a number of different variants, and also sells the turrets separately so you can switch turrets if you need a different version. It was a clean print, and takes paint and glue well – Of course I broke the main gun and replaced it with wire.

I chose a rather colourful scheme for the tank because it reminded me of a lithographed tin tank I had as a child. I keep wanting to wind this one up!

There are no markings on it, so I can use it for VBCW, WW1, Pulp, Back of Beyond, or even WW2. I could use it dam’ near anywhere.

For more information on the Renault FT, look here.

VBCW: Vickers Independent

Filed under: 3D Printing, Pulp Gaming, VBCW — gisby @ 00:26

The Vickers A1E1 only ever reached the prototype stage and only a single example was built, but it is so beautiful I needed one for my VBCW forces. (I have a weakness for multi-turret tanks)

In theory it should be a terror on the battlefield – A 47mm main gun, plus four independently-firing machine guns, it was designed to dominate the cover of ‘Boy’s Adventure’ magazines.

This model was 3D printed in six pieces, but is a bit of a franken-tank.

A good friend printed it for me, and it was a flawless print – But he didn’t cure the resin sufficiently, and on it’s way to me, the fenders warped like a flooded basketball court. The turrets were great, but he had printed all the small turrets the same, although there are two types.

The second print was commercially done. Plastic rather than resin, the dome turret had lines like a phonograph record, and he only printed two small turrets – Even more of the one I already had! But the hull was useable.

My friend tried again, just the small turrets, and printed two of each, so I finally had a complete tank. The original turret, commercial hull, and a mixture of machine-gun turrets. I had an extra of the anti-aircraft turret, which I sent to a friend in the UK who had similar problems.

In the process, I dropped the main turret and snapped the gun off. Luckily I had wire of the correct size to make a new gun.

For more information on the Vickers A1E1 Independent look HERE.

August 13, 2022

VBCW: Carden-Loyd SP Gun

In 1930, Belgium purchased six Carden-Loyd carriers for use as artillery tractors. By 1933 they decided the carriers were not up to the job, so instead mounted the 47mm anti-tank guns directly onto the carriers.

Needless to say, they still were not up to the task, losing stability, mobility, and overwhelming the crew. But Belgium had a mobile anti-tank gun, of sorts.

In my VBCW, nobody has learned anything, but they remember the Belgian ingenuity, and copy it for British use. They have plenty of carriers, and small anti-tank guns to mount on them.

The carrier is a three-piece 3D print from Paint and Glue Miniatures. It was a lovely print, crisp and clean.

Because the model is so light, when I added the crew, it sat back on it’s heels, and required a weight be added under the front hull so it would sit flat.

The crew are from Reiver Castings, with new heads from Woodbine Designs. (There was nothing wrong with their heads, they were just wearing the wrong hats)

Read more about the Carden-Loyd Anti-Tank gun carrier HERE.

August 9, 2022

VBCW: More Mounties

In past years I have recruited a band of RCMP to serve in my VBCW, and a Musical Ride to serve as Cavalry. They have always been my favourites, but somewhat under gunned.

I found a solution on a VBCW Facebook page – Someone had taken the Woodbine Designs Vickers gun & crew, and given them the ‘lemon squeezer’ hats to make RCMP. (This is not my original idea, and full credit goes to the OP.) So that’s what I did.

There was also a photo found online – Not really RCMP, but they look like them, and that’s good enough for me. A motorcycle combo, with a Lewis gun on the bike, and a passenger with a Bergmann SMG (or similar.) I have NO idea why the APP thought they needed this, but I fell in love with it. For YEARS I had hoped someone would make it, but no luck.

Paint & Glue Miniatures has a lovely Polish motorcycle combo, and the passenger already has a small drum-fed SMG. A bit of carving, a pair of woodbine heads, and a Lewis gun, and I finally have my RCMP bike.

The bike is delicate in places, so you really have to be careful with it until it is based. (It’s a 1-piece print!) I avoided the problem by just breaking the two pieces apart (for ease when cutting, drilling, carving) and pinning them back together with wire. But it is a beautiful piece, and the print was perfect.

August 8, 2022

VBCW/Great War British lancers

Filed under: RENEGADE Miniatures, VBCW, WW1 — gisby @ 23:48

In the Great War, they soon learned that Cavalry could no longer be readily used in its traditional roles. In my VBCW, they completely forgot.

I had a spare unit’s worth of Renegade Miniatures British cavalry, and I figured they’d be more useful defending Dorking than sitting unpainted in a box.

The lances are made from floral wire, with pennons printed on my computer (In outline, with the colours painted in)

The only thing that makes these VBCW rather than BEF is… well… The shelf I keep them on? Yes, they are just Early War British cavalry.

But all in all, they are a good-looking unit, and will no doubt deal harshly with the foe.

VBCW/Great War: Woodbine heads

Filed under: RENEGADE Miniatures, VBCW, Woodbine Design, WW1 — gisby @ 23:21

I have recently been using Woodbine Designs separate heads to convert and/or improve other companies’ miniatures. These are all intended for VBCW, but they are all WW1 miniatures, so just as useful there.

This is a unit of Renegade Miniatures Highlanders, with Woodbine Tam O’Shanters. The original heads were large, crude, and ugly.

The figure on the left has the original head – The new head is quite an improvement.

I avoided painting the Highlanders for years, because I hated their heads. I also had Highlander HMG crews and a gas hooded crew that I really had no use for. But it was simple and easy to replace the heads with the Woodbine heads.

I snapped off the old heads and drilled a hole in the centre of the collar. I then twirled an Xacto blade in the hole to widen it, and the neck stub on the new heads fitted perfectly.

The Highlander HMG also benefitted from the head swap.

This is the same crew, but with a Balmoral Cap.

This crew was wearing gas hoods – I did a second crew with Balmoral caps.

I have also used their heads to make vehicle and artillery crew, they are all over my VBCW battlefields. They also allow me to feel clever for all my brilliant conversions, without my needing any talent!

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