High-rise Downtown

You know those buildings we previewed yesterday ? Well, that’s not all – there are three more larger buildings to finish off the set. There are two small blocks of apartments or offices, and a larger single-storey building.

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Resin isn’t the easiest thing to photograph, especially in dodgy light with a phone, but hopefully you can see the details.

Once again, release is set for Salute.

Seen these before ?

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You might think you have – they’re some of our SF advanced buildings. But these are slightly different … they’re quite a bit smaller than the 15mm versions that you’re thinking of. We’ve been promising to make these in 6mm for a while, and we’ve finally got there. And there are more …

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These are the very first castings from new moulds, so there is the odd flaw and air bubble, but I’m so chuffed to get these out that I wanted to show them off, warts ‘n’ all.

Due for release in a couple of weeks at Salute.

A Fine Haul

I spent part of yesterday doing some resin casting, taking advantage of the relatively fine weather to work outside (in the UK, ‘fine weather’ = ‘not raining today’). Below is the result of my labours (most of it, anyway) – a pile that now needs sorting into storage boxes for Salute.

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And yes, in amongst them there are a number of new release items that you may not have seen before – more details of these in days to come …

It’s Been a While …

Ages, and ages (and ages) ago we previewed some masters of our Neo-Soviet SF vehicles in 15mm (here and here). Some of the prototypes even got as far as seeing action, but only glimpses of it. In fact it was two years ago (two years !) that we first showed these. This is a long time, even by our glacial standards, for something to reside in Development Hell.

But, what’s this ? Could it be …

BisonKunitsa

SF15-1201-1

SF15-1201a

BizonGroup

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We’re not quite there yet (the APCs are awaiting their metal hatches, and I forgot to cast up enough gatling secondary turrets for this photo !) but, so nearly …

Bizon. Kunitsa. Laska. Rosomakha. 15mm. April 12th, Salute 2014.

Tally Ho !

We’ve been concentrating a lot on our 15mm range recently, but we haven’t forgotten the other ranges. Next week we’ll be releasing a much anticipated set in our 2mm buildings range, and a move away from VSF-themed buildings. This is the WW2 RAF airfield set, complete with six blister hangars, Nissen huts, a control tower, firing butt and various admin buildings.

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Release date is set for next Friday (March 14th) – Pico Armor should also have their first stocks by then for North American customers.

Expanding the Donut

My post last week about our ‘octo-donut’ colony base seems to have been pretty popular, judging by the stats on the blog and the Facebook feed. As mentioned, it needed some connecting frames to complete the construction, which duly arrived last week. Please excuse the less-than-perfect photos, I finished a long photo session yesterday afternoon, put all of the kit away and forgot to take these, so I had to whip out my phone to do them in dodgy light instead !

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The basic open connecting frame fits between two building parts and basically just neatens up and hides the join, like this:

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There are two other frames that are intended to fit over the end of any building to terminate it – one piece has a door in (that matches the external door in one of the two corner buildings shown last week), the other is a blank end with a bit of detail to liven it up.

Along with these were several new parts to the base, shown below:

Basic module, used as a habitation unit, laboratory etc. No doors, two identical pairs of windows either side:
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Module with entrance door, the extended entrance module could easily be a decontamination airlock:
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Garage/store-room module with large roll-up door:
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With the addition of these extra modules, the octo-donut suddenly becomes a lot more flexible (and the name octo-donut increasingly more inaccurate, since the parts will make up much more than a simple octagonal base). For example, two of the new modules make a larger enclosed base with airlock and vehicle garage:

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Or you could just add one straight module and use the end frame pieces to make an open base with the entrance in the middle:

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And of course each individual module can be used to make a stand-alone building using the end frames:

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Or two modules together make a simple garage plus workshop unit:

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The possibilities, if not limitless, are certainly extensive. I’ve thought of several sitting here typing up this post, so I’m sure you can think of more. And the possibilities will grow further when we add three- and four-way junctions (T and + shaped) to the modules.

A New Era

At Brigade, Phil and I have pretty well-defined roles. I do the bulk of the sculpting and design work, handle admin, orders, the post etc while Phil has the vital task of making moulds, both vulcanised ones for the centrifuge and RTV rubber moulds for resin items, and doing all of our resin casting. We share the metal casting duties of an evening.

Last week, however, I finally dipped my toe into the murky waters of mould-making and resin casting – OK, I realise that in wargames manufacturing terms that’s about as newsworthy as ‘man makes cup of tea’, I’m not exactly breaking any new ground here. But I’m pretty pleased with what I’ve done, enough to want to share the results. So here they are:

OctoDonut

No, it’s not some fancy cake mould ! It’s a 15mm SF colony base, or at least the first two parts of it (look carefully, there are two different modules in the four that make up this ring). During development I nicknamed it the Octo-Donut for want of a better name, but I’ll have to come up with something more snappy for the release. The final version will come with metal frames that fit between each part to hide the join, they’re still waiting to arrive from the printer. The modular design means that we’ll be able to provide plenty of options – straight corridors, T-junctions, labs, power modules, garages etc, but for the initial release these two pieces make an ideal self-contained base unit.

Look for a release as soon as the connecting frames arrive (due Friday) and can be thrown in a mould (hopefully not long after).

What this also means is that with a bit of luck I’ll be able to take over some of the resin moulding and casting duties from Phil and ease his workload a bit, which in turns means that we ought to be able to release many of the backed-up masters that we’ve not yet been able to get into production.

15mm Previews

We haven’t had any previews for a while (see previous posts whinging about lack of time, sleep etc …). However, I’ve finally got around to cleaning up some new 15mm turret variants for the EuroFed vehicles and thought you’d all like a peak.

Gallieni
Gallieni Tank Destroyer

Juin
Juin AA Tank

Tassigny AA
Tassigny AA Vehicle

Tassigny MICV
Tassigny with support turret

Weygand
Weygand MRL

Glorie
Glorie Self-propelled howitzer

No release date yet, but hopefully it won’t be too long …

And about *@$%ing time too……

About a hundred years ago (well earlier this year actually but it seems like a long time) we released the first of our “advanced buildings” in 15mm. Since then people have been nagging for the third one to made available. Well I’ve finally pulled my finger out and made the mould.

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building 3 back

We’ll have some at SELWG this weekend. Not sure how many as it depends on the number I can cast before Sunday morning. We’ll also have the 15mm garage¬†for sale as well.

That’s Better !

Regular followers of the blog will be well aware of the issues we’ve had with our British spaceships – from all the build-up to release at Salute, followed by the crashing disappointment when the initial castings of the capital ships turned out to be nowhere near good enough, and our decision to suspend the release until we’d fixed the problems.

As Phil pointed out last week, we’ve had the models reprinted, I’ve been through the tedious business of cleaning up the prints and prepping them for moulding and Phil made the mould. We tried it last week and, to the relief of us both, all went well and all of the parts came out much better then before. The main reason for this is that we’ve taken all of the larger models (heavy cruiser upwards) and split them laterally. We also remodelled the battleship/carrier engine block, which had some design issues that made it a poor caster. The older versions of the ships were cast in one piece, and frankly they were too large lumps of metal to cast properly – we had pitting and incompletely filled parts all over the shop. The thinner parts have cast much better, and we are so much happier. It does mean that the models have to be assembled (only two halves, top and bottom, plus the engine for the battleship) but this shouldn’t be beyond most modellers.

We’re still aiming for a September release for the initial batch of ten models (these three plus a light cruiser and six escort-sized vessels), followed by the dreadnought and carrier soon after.

CapitalsBlog