Following on from the 15mm Thunderbolt Vikings, we’re adding the 6mm versions to our Salute release list. It’s exactly the same list, two versions of the Viking half-track and three trailers.
This will be it for 6mm at Salute, unfortunately we bit off far more than we could chew with the 6mm versions of the Centurions and other Slammers vehicles, and poor Phil had no chance of making that many moulds in time. So those vehicles will be appearing sometime after Salute, probably in several batches.
So, with exactly two weeks to go until the doors to Salute are thrown open, it’s high time we set up our Salute releases page for this year. This page is where you’ll find the definitive list of confirmed releases at the show, including prices and codes. Nothing gets added to this page unless we’re certain that we’ll have on the day. The page will sit at the top of the blog until the 14th so it’s easily accessible. Some of the photos will be of unpainted or undercoated models, but as they get painted I’ll do my best to update them. This year we are a little behind with this page, so expect new items to be added at quite a rate.
Although we’ll have everything here available at the show, we’ll stagger the addition of the releases onto the website – that is simply to avoid us being flooded with a huge pile of orders for the new items. We’d rather regulate the flow of new stuff – that way we avoid getting behind on orders, which no-one wants. As we did last year, we’ve put the intended website release date to each range.
We’re happy to take advance orders if you’d like to reserve any items, new or existing. You can either e-mail us and send a list to be paid for on the day (cash or card), or you can use the ‘Collect in Person’ shipping option on the website to place an order without paying any postage charges. Please place any orders by Sunday 8th April to give us a chance of processing them.
Hammer’s Slammers – 15mm Website release dates: Monday 7th May – Friday 11th May
Today we’re unveiling a new 15mm model for the Thunderbolt Division, a mercenary unit from the Slammerverse that relies mainly on half-tracked vehicles (and you thought half-tracks were obsolete …). This is the Viking, a smaller recce vehicle also used for towing cargo and weapon trailers. The model has a resin hull with 10 metal parts including the turret, for which there are two options, cannon or missile launcher.
Also available is the Varningr trailer which comes in three variants – a plain cargo trailer, an MRLS version with a 9-barrelled rocket launcher and a calliope trailer with an 8-barrelled anti-missile system.
We haven’t forgotten the larger Dragoon half-tracks – we’re hoping to get those released sometime very soon, once we’ve finished remoulding the metal parts and sorted out a few wrinkles with the casting of the resin hull.
The final phase of our British Aeronef replacement programme is a new fighter carrier model. This is the Furious, a two-deck vessel which carries up to 18 fighters. The model is resin hulled with a separate full-length metal flight deck and other bits. The main hangar deck is visible from the end and sides, so we’re looking forward to seeing lots of aerial mini-dioramas of the interior.
The Furious carries two new types of fighter aircraft – the Fitton SE-32 Scout biplane fighter, and Thornton Aviation’s TA-7 2-seat pusher heavy fighter. Both new models will also be available at Salute.
The fourth new British Aeronef is the Ark Royal, an Airship tender. Based on a commercial merchant hull, this has a massive blimp hangar amidships and a decent light cruiser armament in two forward turrets.
Something missing from our Small Scale Range has always been bridges. We started to put this right last year with the Girder Bridges pack, and part of our Salute line-up this year should be this set of four stone bridges. Each is 40mm long (to match the girder bridges) but are simpler single-piece models with varying numbers of arches.
More Salute previews today – and the first confirmed releases (that is, nailed down with product codes, prices ‘n’ all). This is a series of small merchant starships – probably privately owned vessels, running errands and cargoes (and possibly fugitives) for anyone who stumps up the price of a full load of fuel. Think Traveller Free Traders or, most famously from large and small screen, the Millennium Falcon or the Serenity. There are five designs in all, each around 1″ long, or roughly 75 metres at the 1/3000th scale that we state for our spaceships range.
A new merchant convoy pack contains one each of the previous release of larger merchants (SFS-5010 to -5014) and two each of the new smaller vessels, plus bases.
Here are some more Small Scale Scenery previews, to prove that we have something other than new Hammer’s Slammers models at Salute this year!
Below are four new lighthouse models – I’ve attempted to find several different styles, so (l-r) we have Calais (Hauts-de-France), Kermorvan (Finistere, Brittany), Westerheversand (Schleswig-Holstein) and Beachy Head (Sussex). These will be metal castings, the French ones are two-piece while the others are single piece castings.
We’re hoping to get first castings of these soon, so we can show you painted versions.
A planned Salute addition to our Small Scale Scenery range is this fine edifice, the City Hall. It’s based loosely on Berlin’s Altes Stadhaus but I’ve played with the dimensions a bit so that it’s exactly 80mm square, and fits in nicely with the 40x40mm block size of our other City buildings. It’ll be a two piece resin casting with the domed tower as a separate piece (it’s seen here fitted to a base for casting which is why I can’t photograph it assembled).
The weather is still pretty grim here – we’ve had more snow with another bout forecast for this afternoon. I haven’t ventured to the workshop at all since Monday, although main roads are clear the back routes are still tricky to negotiate. So, if you have an outstanding order with us (anything placed since last Sunday) then there will be a bit of a delay. The forecast is for a bit of a thaw from Sunday – the temperatures should at least climb above freezing – so I’ll get back to the workshop on Monday and should have the backlog cleared in a couple of days.
As I mentioned in my last post, I’m going to postpone this week’s new release until I’ve cleared the order queue. Phil has also been off work for part of this week as his office was closed, so he’s taken the chance to get ahead with mould production so we have more new stuff ready to release.
I haven’t been idle – apart from walking the dog in the snow (which she loved, as you can see) I’ve been painting some new bits – I’ve now finished all of our new releases for the next four weeks. And looking further ahead, Salute is now just six weeks away. As regular readers of our blog will know, we like to have lots of shiny new releases to tempt you with at the show (and to make our overseas customers envious). This year’s focus is firmly on 15mm Sci-Fi and in particular Hammer’s Slammers – if all goes well we could have as many as a dozen new vehicles in lots of variants. We’re working on some important vehicle types that feature in a number of the detachment lists with the aim of making it possible to create those detachments again. The design work for these is mostly done, and we already have the masters for many of them cleaned up and prepped for moulding (a couple have already been moulded in fact). And the hope is that we’ll get as many of these vehicles as possible available in 6mm as well.
It won’t be all Slammers though – there are half-a-dozen spaceship masters on my workbench, some Aeronef in the works and today I’m working on new 2mm scale buildings. Oh, and we’ve commissioned some new (and unusual) 28mm Great War figures – Dib Dib Dib!
Having waffled on about all the new stuff, it wouldn’t be fair to leave you without at least one or two pictures – so here we are…
We’ll, that’s it for 2017. I’m now off until January 2nd, so while the website will remain open for business, no orders will be processed until I return.
In a rather unexpected turn of events, I did in the end manage to clear every outstanding order (except for one, but that was down to a resin mould failing at just the wrong moment), including one that came in this afternoon. The metal delivery arrived in the nick of time this morning, which was a relief. There were several very large orders which were all for similar items (6mm Slammers and opposition) which I was able to do as one very big batch, saving a lot of time. And I was also very lucky that most of the post-sale orders have been straightforward, either things that were quick and easy to cast or that I already had in stock. Which is great, as it means that 2018 will start with a clean slate rather than a 2017 sale hangover as previous years often have.
The orders won’t be posted until after Christmas – there’s no point, as nothing will be delivered over the holiday so all they’d do is sit in a Royal Mail depot for several days. I’ll shift them all during next week.
Finally, while waiting for the metal delivery this morning I made some resin moulds for some of next year’s early releases. This is what went into them…