Sale Update

The sale has gone off with a bang and a veritable Niagara of orders. I’m trying to keep up as best as I can, but at the moment I’m running a couple of days behind. All orders (with a couple of exceptions) to the end of Monday have been completed and I’m roughly halfway through Tuesday’s ones – although there’s been a slight hiccup with a minor broadband issue that prevented me doing today’s post in time, so they’ll have to go to the post office tomorrow instead. I generally tackle them in strict order of arrival, first-come-first-served, although if I get two orders for similar items then I’ll do those at the same time as it’s generally more efficient to do so.

Since we have no new releases during the sale, we like to post pictures of new items that you can look forward to in the New Year. A box of bits turned up from the printer at the end of last week and one of those was our first brand new item for the 15mm Hammer’s Slammers range. It’s an uparmoured version of the M2A4F command tank (designated the M2A4FUA). I’ve sat it on a standard blower hull for the photo since I didn’t have an uparmoured hull handy. The turret is a brand new 3D designed piece rather than a conversion of the existing command tank turret, and should be available sometime in January.

The Slammers Arrive

It’s taken a week or three, but the first of the 15mm Hammer’s Slammers models have now arrived on the website. To start with we’ve put up the Slammers themselves, including both the original vehicles and the uparmoured Friesland Defence Force models, plus a couple of other blower tank variants from other mercenary units.

All of the resin parts come from fresh moulds – as we posted earlier, we had some issues with the original Ainsty moulds not liking the resin we use, so it seemed simpler to remould pretty much everything (one of two of the newer moulds behaved OK so we can still use those until they expire).

The website has been given a thorough going over too, with all of our Hammer’s Slammers models, both 6mm and 15mm, being pulled out onto their own dedicated section of the website rather than being mixed in with our other 6mm and 15mm ranges (this is purely for convenience so that the Slammers stuff is easy to find). This has meant a bit of upheaval, with some items changing product code and the files moving about on the website – which inevitably means that many of the links from the blog will no longer work, although I will find and fix as many as I can. I’m still tweaking/fixing the website and blog, so links and pages may appear, disappear, break, get fixed and generally be all over the place for a little while…

The other, non-Slammers vehicles – the GD-1000 series GEVs and Dragoon half-tracks – will be on the website as soon as we can manage it. We have brand new moulds for the half-track hulls but we are making fresh moulds for the metal parts of both sets of vehicles which will be a week or two. And we haven’t forgotten the decal sheets, they need sorting through to determine what levels of stock we have.

So, without further ado, here’s a list of what’s immediately available:

HS15-111 – M2A4 Blower Tank – £9.00
HS15-111a – M2A4F Command Tank – £9.00
HS15-111b – M2A4UA Uparmoured Tank – £9.00
HS15-112 – M9A1 Combat Car – £5.00
HS15-112a – M9A4 Command Car – £4.00
HS15-112d – M9A7 Uparmoured Combat Car – £5.00
HS15-113 – A21 Jeep – £2.50
HS15-114 – M53 20cm Artillery Hog – £10.00
HS15-115 – E8 ‘Wrenchmobile’ – £10.00

Lightning Division
HS15-1711 – M2A7 Blower Tank – £9.00

Waldheim Dragoons
HS15-1911 – M2A2 Blower Tank – £9.00

And, just to see who reads all the way to the end … our now-traditional end-of-year sale starts this Friday – so prime those credit cards !

Bolt from the Blue

Today’s new release is a set of 6mm vehicles neatly connected to our recent acquisition of the 15mm Hammer’s Slammers range of models, although it has to be said that these new ones were in place and complete before the 15mm deal was mooted. I created the 3D masters of all of these vehicles from scratch by referencing 15mm castings from Ainsty, but ironically just three days ago we were provided with the original data files for the larger models, which would have saved me an awful lot of work ! C’est la vie …

What we have are large half-tracks for the Thunderbolt Division, a veteran combined arms formation led by Colonel Chiro. There are five variants of the Dragoon series of vehicles, which all use the same chassis with different turrets – these include powergun armed Tank/ICV, tank destroyer, missile-carrying Schlepper, anti-aircraft/anti-missile Calliope and infantry-carrying M/ICV (there is also a command variant in the detachment list, this is externally identical to the M/ICV). The models are available individually, and we’ve also created two packs representing the Panzer Grenadier and Panzer detachments on the Thunderbolt playsheet. The playsheet also lists the smaller Viking recce half-track – this will be available early in the new year, along with the 15mm version – you might be able to spot one or two Vikings in the background of the photos.

We’ve got hold of a few copies of the Crucible rulebook, so these are now listed (under our 15mm range) on the website.

And as a final bonus, here’s a new vehicle for the Slammers themselves – the E8 ‘Wrenchmobile’ recovery vehicle. This is a large flat-bed GEV used for fixing disabled vehicles in the field, and it can also recover combat cars if necessary (blower tanks are too heavy even for the E8). In emergencies they have also been deployed by the Slammers as very large infantry carriers.

HSC-006 – Hammer’s Slammers:Crucible Rulebook – £25.00
HS-1615 – E8 Wrenchmobile – £2.00
HS-1801 – Thunderbolt Panzer Grenadier Detachment – £7.25
HS-1802 – Thunderbolt Panzer Detachment – £8.00
HS-1811 – Br59 Dragoon 2 T/ICV – £1.25
HS-1812 – Br66 Tank Destroyer – £1.25
HS-1813 – Br58SM Schlepper – £1.25
HS-1814 – Br54/56 Dragoon 2 M/ICV – £1.25
HS-1815 – Br57 Calliope – £1.25

And work is progressing nicely on the 15mm Slammers – the first of these will be on the website next week if all goes to plan.

Slammer Update

So amongst other things, over the past couple of weeks since SELWG I’ve been trying out the moulds for the Hammer’s Slammers models we recently acquired.

Some have been fine, while others don’t seem to like our resin too much – it seems to grip the rubber and rip bits off them. This was once a blower tank hull…

The problem has been compounded by a lack of resin – our usual supplier normally manages next-day deliveries, but this latest order has taken almost two weeks, which means I’ve had to conserve my stocks to cover website orders, instead of being able to cast lots of Slammers models (and blower tanks hulls needs lots of resin); yesterday afternoon, when I hoped to be in full production mode, I’d completely run out. However, I have managed to gather a bit of stock for Crisis tomorrow – I have some combat cars, a handful of blower tanks with a selection of turrets, a few artillery Hogs and a few jeeps. Not as much as I’d hoped, but enough to be getting on with.

We’ve started remoulding all of the vehicles in our normal rubber which we know works with our resin, so with a bit of luck we’ll have the first of them on our website in the next week or two.

Right, it’s off to the channel tunnel for me, to catch a train under the sea and then drive up to Antwerp for our last show of the year, Crisis.

Under New Management

We have some very exciting news to announce today. As followers of our Facebook page may already know, we’ve agreed with Ainsty Castings to take over ownership and production of the Hammer’s Slammers range of 15mm vehicles, based on David Drake’s series of SF combat stories. This includes both the Slammers’ own vehicles plus the ones of other forces such as the Thunderbolt half-tracks and Broglie’s Legion blower vehicles, along with decals and other accessories.

This brings both the 6mm and 15mm Hammer’s Slammers ranges under our roof now, and of course many of our existing models already feature in the Slammer’s universe in other mercenary forces.

We’ve already been talking to John Treadaway, one of the authors of The Crucible, the official Hammer’s Slammers ruleset, about further development of the range including additional vehicles for the Slammers themselves and more opposition forces. This will include many of the vehicles that are mentioned in the rulebook but which have never been available in 15mm or 6mm. The first of these should start appearing in the first quarter of 2018.

In the meantime, we’re hoping to start production of at least part of the range within a couple of weeks – our target is to have at least some stock available at Crisis next weekend.

Slammers Upgrades

Today we’re releasing more reinforcements for our 6mm Hammer’s Slammers forces. There are uparmoured versions of the M2A4UA tank and M9A7 combat car, plus new artillery support on the form of the M53 20cm Artillery Hog.

The new tanks have extra armour plating pretty much all over – the difference is obvious comparing the two versions side-by-side. This option makes the M2 blowers even more formidable than they already are.

The combat cars also have additional hull armour, plus extra plating that fits over the existing mesh splinter shield.

The M53 Hogs are enormous vehicles, as big as a blower tank and with a turret that wouldn’t look out of place on a naval destroyer ! The M53 can empty its six-round ready magazine in just 15 seconds and the ammunition options include nuclear, nerve agents and cluster rounds as well as the usual array of conventional munitions. You can read more about the Hog, and the other Slammers blower vehicles, on the official website.

The models are all available singly, or we have new army and detachment packs that replicate the existing organisations but with the uparmoured vehicles instead. There’s also a new artillery pack with hogs, mortar jeeps and command and observer vehicles.

HSD6-100u – Friesland Defence Force Army Pack – £25.00
HSD6-101u – Uparmoured Tank Detachment – £11.00
HSD6-102u – Uparmoured Combat Car Detachment – £11.00
HSD6-104 – Artillery Detachment – £10.00

HS6-111b – M2A4UA Uparmoured Blower Tank – £1.50
HS6-111c – M2A4FUA Uparmoured Command Tank – £1.50
HS6-112d – M9A7 Uparmoured Combat Car – £1.00
HS6-114 – M53 20cm Artillery Hog – £1.50

Small-Scale Slammers Action

Hammer’s Slammers:The Crucible author (and newly-appointed Miniature Wargames editor) John Treadaway recently visited our club, Maidstone Wargames Society, again for another Slammers game – this time in 6mm.

dsc_1924

We utilised the club’s Pegasus Bridge WW2 terrain boards, but replaced all of the Normandy houses with ones from our resin SF ranges. The game saw the Slammers, supported by the 101st Texians in their VTOLs, racing to take a bridge held by a combined force of the Stewart regiment, Waldheim Dragoons and some Terran Authority Starmarines.

Below is a selection of photos from the day – John has more of his own on the HS website.

Slammers’ Support

Following on from our initial release of 6mm Hammer’s Slammers’ vehicles, we have some additional support vehicles released today. The one that gets nearest to the frontline is the mortar version of the A21 jeep, diminutive but with plenty of indirect firepower.

supportrelease

Further behind the lines you’ll find the cargo and ambulance variants of the M9 combat car. The cargo version in particular is also used by other mercenary units as a transport hauler or as a gun tractor towing anti-tank weapons.

In more Slammers’ news, we have restocks of infantry and skimmers from Ground Zero Games, so the Slammers’ army pack and mobile infantry detachment are available again.

HS6-112b – M9 Cargo Car – £1.00
HS6-112c – M9A4 Ambulance car – £1.00
HS6-113a – A21 Mortar Jeep – £0.50

Greased Lightning

The Lightning Division are a mechanized unit of brigade strength. They are veteran troops originally from Mittel Europa on Old Earth and – in the late 330s TW – they decided to upgrade the motive power sources and transmission systems of their vehicles.

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The M2A7 Blower employed by the Lightning Division from 349TW onwards is based on the M2A4F version, the command tank used by Hammer’s Regiment. This is equipped with a 22cm, discarding-sabot rail-gun and the rear of the turret bulge mounts a small turret with a 1cm gatling rail-gun.

hs-1711

Infantry are carried in up-armoured M9 Command Car, the M9A14 Crew Car. This has frontal reinforcement compared to a standard Command Car and has two roof mounted 1cm gatling rail-gun turrets mounted offset so that they can both fire forwards and backwards with little impedance.

hs1712

The Lightning Division also use the standard A21 hover jeep, and we have a pack available with four each of the tank, crew car and jeep, plus four sprues of infantry figures.

HSD6-1701 – Lightning Division Detachment – £12.00
HS6-1711 – M2A7 Blower Tank – £1.50
HS6-1712 – M9A14 Crew Car – £1.00

Temporary Injunction

Ah, what a day I had yesterday … while manoeuvring some boxes in the workshop, I managed to knock over one of the drawer units that we use to carry stock to shows … 48 drawers full of 1200+ Celtos figures scattered all over the floor 🙁 It took over an hour and a half to pick them all up and sort them back into the correct drawers. Add to that the rather oppressive heat we had yesterday, and you can safely say that I wasn’t a happy bunny ! In my rather grumpy mood I also forgot to pick up two small Aeronef masts which I needed to complete some new models, which means I couldn’t finish painting them, which means no new release today…

On the upside, our stocks of Imperial Skies rulebooks and the various laser-cut accessories are due in over the weekend – rulebook author Robin is driving over with a boot-full of boxes on Sunday morning. This means that the first batches of pledges will start shipping this week – we’ve already ordered in lots of extra boxes to pack them in.

Imperial Skies LOGO

Finally, some good and not-so-good news. The good news is that the Hammer’s Slammers 6mm models released last week have been selling very well, with plenty of Blower tanks and combat cars going out the door. The downside is that we’ve already run out of the skimmers and infantry that we ordered in from GZG, so I’ve had to temporarily take the army and mobile infantry packs off the website while we wait for a restock. The rest of the packs and models are still available however, and you can always order the skimmers and figures direct from GZG.

HS-5