Some news, some is important, some middling and some trivial

This is the important one!

Some of you may know Heresy Miniatures?

Creator of this huge beastie

Well he is in a spot of bother. His words about it.

“Hi! My name is Andy Foster, I’m a miniatures sculptor who has run a tiny indie wargames miniatures maker for the last 21 years. Unfortunately, this means I can’t afford to buy a home in the UK because our housing market is nuts, and the average starter home costs over 12 times what I make in a good year, so I am only able to rent.

And because the housing market IS so insane, rental property prices are also incredibly high, and I’ve just been told that the house we have lived in for the last 8 years is having its rent increased by the landlord from £800 a month to £1175, which I absolutely can’t afford to cover.

The problem is, because I am living hand to mouth, as a lot of indie miniatures manufacturers do, I don’t have the funds in my bank account to pay for a deposit on a new rental home, or the fees involved, which amount to around £1500 for a tiny 2 bed terraced house in the UK, so I must turn to you, dear friends and customers, to help me out. Any amount is gratefully received! Any extra may need to go towards a new bed, wardrobe, etc if the house ends up with a bedroom that is too small for our current one to fit in (and I suspect my existing wardrobes won’t survive another move, they’re decades old self assembly things that are already a bit fragile!)”

There is a Go Fund Me set up and it would be really nice if everyone reading this was able to donate a little something. Even a quid would be amazing.

https://gofund.me/811fdb7b

Now to something of middling importance.

I mentioned the “Not Nog Ball” medball Kickstarter a few days ago. There has been a new addition to the campaign.

We’ve just got permission to add the Noggin character pack to the Medball Kickstarter which is great news! It consists of 3 miniatures; Noggin as a referee, Nogbad as a fan (with separate rattle) and Knut waving his scarf.

And finally some trivial news.

Last summer we were looking after two kittens that were dumped on a friend’s farm and were going to get them re homed.

Two kittens and that shirt

One of them decided that he adored me and decided to stay. I now have a constant companion wherever I am.

My painting knee warmer Jasper

Why Heroquest is so great

Before you read any further please watch this instructional video.

https://youtu.be/Cx8sl2uC46A

Part of this year’s aim is to finish off any half done projects. There are quite a few. One I had started about four (or more) years ago was to make a Heroquest board. I had acquired the components eight years ago from EBay. Four years I laser etched the board double size. That took about seven hours. Then over the years I made doors and 3D printed the player characters.

Here is a progress report.

Base paints applied with a little sponge work. It was a bit dispiriting in this stage because it looked a bit crap.
But I persevered. This is with black between the tiles and edge highlighting. Much better. After this I will airbrush shadows around the room edges.
I have printed two versions of the player characters, classic for the purists. These came from Thingiverse complete with mold lines. The second is from StoneKing. Chibi stylee. Behind them you can see the various enemies our brave questers will have to face. They are wooden flats with some Oldhammer illustrations.
The doors ready for some paint.

I will keep you updated with further progress reports.

There will be updates on my: SpaceHulk, Bloodbowl and Battlefleet Gothic. One day.

Not Noggin the Nog

For many of you I expect you are unfamiliar with the works of Oliver Postgate and Peter Firmin. Their work was a staple, along with Thunderbirds, of my youthful viewing schedule. Charming animations made by moving pieces of painted paper around.

Nogin the Nog was one of them. You can read a little about it here.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noggin_the_Nog

Why am I bringing this up? Well a friend of mine, David Wood, had a Kickstarter a few years back to produce a set of figures based on the series. And rather nice they are too. They are on my to do list for this year. As a plug you can buy them and many more lovely things here…

Now Mr. Wood has a new Kickstarter for some totally not related at all fantasy football teams.

These do look rather lovely and if you are a fan of whimsical sculpts, especially of Martin Buck, I would recommend you have a peek.

Starting off 2023

As promised here are some photos of this years painting progress. One plan for this year is to have a dedicated space for photography. At the moment I am taking them in a variety of places with different light sources. No consistency in quality or standardisation. One I have everything set up I can work on fine tuning white balance and depth of field. Ideally I want to revamp my gallery, maybe trying to look a little more professional….. just an idea.

The first few were half-done figures that had been sat on my desk for over a year and just after Christmas I emptied my desk and finished them off.

A mad scientist. From Crooked Dice
3D printed dice cup for my Orc Bloodbowl team
A Grot tank, cobbled together from stuff from the bits box. My first attempt with the Dirty Down Rust.
From Crooked Dice Colony 87 range. I started this on New Year’s Eve and almost finished it that day.
This comes from EM4 Miniatures (I think) I really enjoyed painting this one.
Might be another EM4
Again from Crooked Dice Colony 87
Again from Crooked Dice Colony 87
Again from Crooked Dice Colony 87
The Duke, his Wife and his Daughters

I am building up a collection of scifi NPCs which I rather enjoy painting.

2023

Finally it is here. Last year was a bit of a blur, nothing really of note stood out and it really did go quickly. I did hit a significant number complete with upcoming health checks. Nothing major to worry about, slightly high cholesterol and low thyroid function. I don’t have occult blood which is really not as interesting as one would think.

One thing which I do regret is that Grumpy Old Tin laser cutting is no longer a thing. The makerspace I was using changed hands and the new owners, Pioniergarage- Salzburg, have a difference in opinion about accommodating the less abled. Long covid means that it it is impossible for me to stand for two or three hours beside the laser machine and the computer is placed so you cannot sit and operate it.

More tomorrow as I had a bit of a painting blitz this last week.

Finally my Product of the Year is Vallejo’s Model Colour Vermillion. A really good punchy highlight red. I did get on the cool kids bandwagon and bought some Dirty Down Rust. I only tried it once and I realise I need a bit more practice with it.

You snooze you loose

Or rather gurgle unpleasantly for three weeks with a chest infection. An update from yesterday’s post.

The Old School Miniatures Kickstarter has finished and the figures are now available for pre order.

Thanks Jamie

https://www.oldschoolminiatures.co.uk/tim-prow-space-adventures-102-c.asp

A couple of Kickstarters to consider

Here are a couple of Kickstarters which might be worth considering.

I was lucky enough to receive some as a Birthday present from OS Miniatures so I couldn’t resist slapping some paint on them. I’ll post some pictures when they are finished.

The second Kickstarter is from Keta Minies. I backed a previous KS campaign and the quality was outstanding.

Adventures in 3D printing and some paint

I’ve been using filament from GST3D for the last year or so. Mainly because it is dirt cheap, if you wait for the sales, and because the quality has been good. That is until recently. My last batch of ten has had three rolls fail. One badly tangled and the other two damp resulting in clogs. Social media has been filling up with complaints about GST3D recently and they have promised to improve. We shall see.

I have started printing some “Vase Mode” models. Specially designed to only print the outside surface.

This is from the Sinister Cities Kickstarter. A free model so you could appraise the results. It is printed with a thicker nozzle, 0.8 rather than the usual 0.4, so the layer lines are noticeable. At arms length not really. This seems to be a good method for bashing out terrain.

https://www.sinistercities.com/the-citybuilder

This little Gnome Spellsinger is from Old School Miniatures, part of their Alpine Gnome range. Have I mentioned how much I love this range?

https://www.oldschoolminiatures.co.uk/alpine-gnomes-3-c.asp

Finally a squad of ten Terminators for the Space Hulk game I am 3D printing. I have printed all the corridors need for the Second Edition, just have to get on and paint them. Batch painting from hell. Starting with a black basecoat, then a zenithal highlight, a colour wash over that, detailing and finally rust and grime. Can’t wait.

A little update on the painting

I have a few more pictures to add, since May. May? Where did the time go?

This is some armoured centaur legs, from the Makers Cult, scaled up from AT scale to 40K scale. The top half is an Armiger. This was a test of the livery I am using on my Titan, sat in a box awaiting paint. The lesson wot I did lern is to not apply gloss varnish until all the armour is painted. The gold was very problematic because of this. My next big print project is a Reaver Titan mounted on the Makers Cult 40K scale centaur legs. Warlord might be a bit much.

This is from the Tesseract Tomb Patreon. I have wanted a train set for ages and he is going to be producing parts over the next few months.

This is the Marauder Giant which is now starting to fetch eye watering prices on Fleabay. Many thanks to the Delta Squad who made this possible. First rule etc.

Finally a Spaash Mareen. Number One Son and I have been taking advantage of the 9Euro German rail tickets and have been travelling to Munich for lunch, As you do. I thought I would pop into WARHAMMER! and try out this newfangled Contrast paint that all the cool kids are using these days. The Red Shirt gave me a figure to try it on. While I was slappinig paint on he was inanely chatting to me in English, but in German was really (like really) pushing the hobby onto Number One Son.

One of our lunches. Nothing too extravagant, just a pork knuckle, potato dumpling, dark beer gravy and sauerkraut.

BUT as a result of the trip to WARHAMMER! Number One Son has expressed an interest in gaming. So now the modular table is getting some use, perhaps I need to get on and paint it? We are using our own version of One Hour Skirmish.

https://penandswordbooks.com/subject-categories/collecting-games-hobbies/wargaming/one-hour-skirmish-wargames.html

A system which utilises playing cards instead of dice which can make the turn system chaotic and fun. Highly recommended.

I also have been distracted by kittens, we are helping a neighbour rehouse kittens. Her farm is used as a dumping ground for unwanted kittens and she finds it a bit too much at times.

We also have been having family days out.

Artistic Intelligence: but is it art?

I have been fooling around with some AI art generators, mostly Midjourney and Wombo, and I thought I might put some of the results here.

The Wombo pictures are more painterly and looser and the Midjourney are very nightmarish. I would invite you to play around for inspiration.

There is also the whole can of worms of: Is it art?

Resolved morals

Disclaimer: the blog post has been brought to you by the generosity and patience of Chitu Systems.

Remember in my last post I said that I had a moral dilemma about fitting the 3D printer screen sent by Chitu Systems? Well they actually read my post (imagine?) and to paraphrase, “Why didn’t you say? Here’s some resin, go and play!”

Stock image. NOT my model

Shortly after they contacted me there was knock on the door and there was an Amazon package with this resin.

The only thing I could do was to fit the screen and do some test prints.

Fitting the screen was an absolute doddle and the online tutorial is a great help.

The firmware update was slightly problematic but some gentle prodding from the online support got me there quickly.

I was a bit of a numpty when it came to the exposure and kept going to high. Once I dialled it back (a lot) I was good to go.

Talking about the resin this gave a little more detail than my my usual Nova3D (cheap as chips) and what I did like was that the models were slightly springy before curing. And that made removing the supports a lot easier. This is now going to be my preferred resin for printing.

This new iteration of mono screen gives a larger print area than the previous one and with a faster print speed it makes it a no-brainer replacement. If you are lucky you can pick up a Mars Pro pretty cheaply, probably second hand, and with this screen upgrade you’ve got a pretty serviceable machine. Roughly for the price of three spash mareen squads. Think on that.

My first proper prints were of various Treefolk for a Warmaster (10mm) Wood Elf Army. Files are from Forest Dragon.

https://forestdragon.gumroad.com/l/QtcwE

Thumbs up from me.

Moral dilemma

I am having a bit of a quandary on what to do. If anybody has suggestions I am all ears.

At the beginning of the year the screen failed on my Mars Pro. On one of my Facebook groups someone had posted about some new Mono screen upgrades from Chitubox. They promised a lot longer life and faster print times.

The replacement

I duly ordered it and it arrived promptly. Fitting it was easy. But I had a right kerfuffle getting the correct firmware and some conflicting advice on how to achieve it. After a couple of days it was resolved and I could print again.

To be honest I couldn’t tell if the print times were faster or if there was a difference in quality. The build space on the X/Y axis was smaller but as everything I print is small it didn’t bother me. I could print.

This is where it becomes interesting.

About two months ago I had a message in Facebook from “Chitu Systems”. Would I be interested in an upgraded screen? I didn’t really believe it was from Chitu Systems and didn’t believe anything would come of it. I said yes and promptly forgot all about it.

Then a couple of weeks later I received a package from China.

Beautifully packaged with a whole load of extras that I didn’t have with the original replacement screen. This one promises a much bigger print area.

I have some reservations about fitting it.

Firstly I have recently fitted the replacement screen and I should get another year at least from it.

Secondly I have run out of resin and due to finances I won’t be buying any for the next month or two. I have just bulk bought some FDM filament for some large projects and that depleted the cash reserves. I have no wish to fit it and not to be able to test it.

Thirdly, do I want to go through the hassle of finding the right firmware again. Timewise I have over faced myself with projects and I want to play catch up before I embark on anything else.

Stupid project making a modular trench system. Which I have no time for.

To top this, I am getting messages every couple of weeks asking if I have fitted it and how did it go. Nothing like piling on the guilt.

So what to do?

Fit it and hope it works when I get resin?

Or wait?

Answers on a postcard please.

Paint progress

Here is a picture heavy painting round up. Still struggling with fatigue and concentration. This is why I made this the first job of the day so it would get done.

These are walking troop transports for my Traitor Guard. There are 3D printed parts from Knucklebones patreon, resin parts from Ramshackle Games and laser cut parts.

I am not quite sure what these are. 3D printed, laser cut, resin parts and physical modelling.

This is from Redgozfasta Patreon. The guy doing this wants to work his way through the Epic Orks collection, scaling them up to 40k size. This month (May) is the Battlewagon. One of the variations is the Weirdboy Tower which I am very much looking forwards to. Entirely printed on my Ender 3 FDM printer. My genius neighbour took my printer apart and rebuilt it totally square. The results are amazing, not resin quality but pretty damn good.

This is a gun crew for my Traitor Guard. This is all from Knucklebones patreon.

https://www.patreon.com/knucklebonesminis/posts

This was from the paintpotchallenge (my elderly computer doesn’t have a hashtag) that was running on Instagram.

https://www.instagram.com/grumpyoldtin/?hl=en

Did I mention that I occasionally lurk on Instagram?

Finally on the painting is Khonshu imprisoned. Printed and painted in 24 hours for my youngest.

There is something big on the horizon. It has finished printing, now to assembly and painting.