We previewed the new German 15mm vehicles during the 12 days of Christmas posts, but the pictures were of the CGI artwork rather than the actual models. So here are photos of the models themselves, awaiting a bit of cleanup and light sanding but almost ready for moulding.
UPS got their act together and remembered to put the parcel on the van this time, so the new batch of 2mm building prints have arrived. This package contained, amongst other things, the farms, factories and terraced houses that we previewed at the end of last month. Once I’d brushed the left-over nylon dust off, they look pretty good – the factories especially, with their larger windows and tall chimneys.
I’m also pleased with the farms, the oast houses and windmills should give a very rural feel to your layouts.
And finally the terraces, perfect places to house the workers for your factories.
And these … ? Poplar trees. Spray green, paint the trunks grey/brown, cover in flock. No idea if they’ll look any good, haven’t tried it yet, but I’m hopeful !
We’re looking at releasing these sets over the next 3-4 weeks, so keep an eye out here and on the website.
As mentioned earlier this week, we’re working on a new range of buildings for our Land Ironclads VSF range. The buildings are all modelled at 1/1000th scale so besides Land Ironclads they are also ideal for 2mm or 1/1200th vehicles and figures. Besides the churches and houses previewed in the earlier post, I’ve already modelled a number of other buildings which you can see below. The first set, already complete, are agricultural buildings – farmhouses, barns, sheds, windmills and – very common in the Kent countryside around Brigade HQ – oast houses (there’s one at the end of my road, now used as an office building).
The next set consists of a number of industrial buildings – small and large factories, warehouses, a pumping station, workshops, even a hydro-electric power station. The four rather imposing smoke-stacks tower over the tiny houses, and all four are interchangeable if you want to customise the look of the buildings.
The third set is a series of terraced houses for more urban landscapes. There are four designs, and other slight differences between some of them. Often associated with Northern England, terraces of this type are also seen in abundance in the south of the country (all of them are based on terraces in our local area).
All three sets have been ordered from the printer and are due in the next few days. Because we order them in sets that fill a complete production mould there is no intermediate master-mould stage and we should be able to get these into production quite quickly.
For this week only, all of the items in our Shapeways store are 10% off. To get this deal you need to e-mail us with your requirements, NOT purchase them directly from the store. We’ll send you a PayPal invoice and at the end of the week we’ll place one big order (this way we all get cheaper shipping as well :-)).
So if you’ve always wanted a 6mm Pegasus bridge, now is the time to get it …
A couple of weeks ago we brought you pictures of some 3D prints of our first set of Land Ironclads scale (roughly 2mm / 1/1000th) houses. Sadly these weren’t really up to scratch, being a bit off the mark in terms of the print quality. Fortunately the nice people at Shapeways also thought so, and offered to reprint them for us. These new prints have arrived in double quick time, and are a massive improvement – so 10/10 for Shapeways customer services department. The detail is much crisper, the edges are square and the windows no longer look like they’ve been pushed into a bit of plasticine with someone’s thumb ! There were happy faces at Brigade Towers this evening, it must be said 🙂
The models are the same – we have a set of 20 English village buildings (mostly houses, with the odd inn, pub or shop amongst them) and nine two-part churches. The nine towers will fit any of the three naves, allowing for plenty of variation.
Because we’ve made enough prints to completely fill two moulds, we should be able to release these in double quick-time because we can bypass the intermediate master-mould stage and go straight to production moulds (the original hope was that we’d have these for SELWG, but that didn’t happen). The houses will come in a single pack of 20 houses for around £5, while the churches will be in a pack of three (one of each nave and three random towers/spires) for £3. The successful printing of these also gives us the confidence to go ahead and order more buildings – we have farms, factories and terraced houses ready to go and lately I’ve been working on some Mediterranean buildings as a break from 15mm tanks. I’ll preview some of these later in the week.
One of our most popular spaceships has always been the German Pommerania Dreadnought. It was one of our earliest models and has been through several iterations as a multipart kit, then a single piece hull cast firstly in metal and then in resin. The original sculpt is rather venerable and has been showing its age for some time, and the model has been out of production for several years.
We’ve always wanted to bring it back so we’ve made a new, digital version of the model with slightly refined styling (to fit in with the rest of the German ships) and a design that should make it easier to cast and assemble.
The first print of this new version died horribly (but mercifully swiftly) in the vulcaniser, so the 3D model has been fixed-up (thicker walls and some strengthening bulkheads) in readiness for a second try. It’s just come out of it’s cleaning bath (well done to those who correctly identified it) and is ready to have a few print lines sanded down and be prepped for the mould.
Our queue of models is quite substantial so it’ll have to wait its turn, but rest assured we’ll be first to bring you the breaking* news of how it fared …
* Actually, we hope that there is no news of any breaking at all
Finally managed some photos – the translucent prints aren’t the easiest thing to photograph, the lack of contrast makes it hard to pick things out but the photos below are reasonably clear I hope.
There are a few print lines that will take a bit of work to sand away before we hit production. At the moment these guys are behind the Neo-Soviets in our extensive (and, it seems, ever-lengthening) queue, so I’m not predicting anything about a release date just yet; it almost certainly won’t be this side of Christmas. But it’ll give you something to look forward to in the New Year 🙂
One of the most tedious parts of getting a model into production is the unglamourous but very necessary job of cleaning up master castings (known as ‘tins’) ready for the production moulds. I find this part of the process extremely dull (I may have mentioned this before …) but it has to be done. These castings have to have any small vent sprues, flash or mould lines cleaned away and filed smooth – otherwise we’ll just reproduce these imperfections when we make the production mould. We always cast more items then we need for the production mould, because castings that might seem OK in the workshop on a cold evening may not always pass closer inspection when cleaning up. Any pitting or less than perfect detail will see the casting rejected.
I spent my evening yesterday with some of the tins for the Bizon production moulds. The Bizon in particular has a lot of pieces and will need a lot of moulds – some of these will be shared with other models (such as the track units, side-skirts and gatling turrets) whereas others are unique to this model (track-guards and turrets).
In this photo you can see a selection of bits – side-skirts and external stowage (bottom left) which are cleaned up and ready for the production mould, some turrets (top left), one with gun which is cleaned and ready and a batch of others waiting for a visit from clippers and file, and some raw track-guards (bottom right) which I’ve yet to tackle.
In other news … the prints for the three PacFed tanks have turned up, and they look superb. Unfortunately I’ve already dunked them in jar of cleaning fluid and forgot to take photos of the assembled pieces first (doh !) so you’ll have to make do with a photo of some undefinable pieces floating in some murky-looking gunk …
Following on from the first successful castings of the Bizon bits last week, I’m suddenly feeling much better about finally making some progress with our new 15mm models. We have several Neo-Soviet vehicles printed and in various stages of the mould-making process which will be the first new releases. But while we’ve been experimenting with the mould-making process, we’ve been working on future releases. Today I’m going to let you have a peak at the first of the PacFed models – these have gone to the printer so we’ll have the masters back soon, although they’ll be behind the Neo-Soviets in the production queue.
As you can see, we’ve redesigned the models a bit, making them a bit more angular and giving them some distinctively fearsome-looking railguns, as well as introducing some details not on their 6mm counterparts.
The different colours indicate the way the models are divided up for printing and moulding. The main hulls (yellow) will be resin, the rest of the parts will be metal castings.