Pacific Thunder

Today sees the final part of stage #1 of our programme to update all of our older Aeronef models. The final one of the big six major powers, the USA, has at last received the planned overhaul of their three older capital ships. The Texas, Maine and Lincoln battleships have all been replaced by new resin and metal designs, joining their counterparts in the other aero-navies of the world.

The Texas is the oldest of the three (the original Texas sculpt was the oldest original Aeronef battleship model remaining in production) and the design reflects a vessel of an earlier era, with a secondary broadside battery in casemates in the superstructure. We’ve also taken a cue from early US naval battleships with the superimposed main turrets – these aren’t able to rotate independently, the upper turret is fixed to the lower one.

The Maine follows a similar deck layout to the Texas but with updated turrets and superstructure. It also has a more conventional superstructure and like the Texas it has a fire control and steering bridge at the top of its bipod masts.

The Lincoln is a much more up-to-date vessel with multi-layered armament in turrets and casemates. Its secondary role as a carrier escort is reflected in the pair of anti-aircraft turrets amidships.

The three new vessels are available individually or in fleet packs – each pack has two battleships plus escorts. The US Grand Fleet pack has also been updated, with one each of the new battleships plus a Lexington battlecruiser and eleven escort vessels. The four new types of turrets on these ships are also available in our Aeronef Accessories range.

VAN-205 – Texas class Battleship – £8.00
VAN-207 – Maine class Battleship – £8.00
VAN-212 – Lincoln class Battleship – £8.50

VAN-7023 – US Twin Square Medium Turrets (x12) – £1.50
VAN-7024 – US Twin Round Medium Turrets (x12) – £1.50
VAN-7025 – US Superimposed Heavy Turrets (x5) – £1.50
VAN-7026 – US Twin Heavy Turrets (x10) – £1.50
VAN-7027 – US Battleship Masts (x6) – £1.50

VANFP-022 – US Grand Fleet Pack – £48.00
VANFP-201 – US Fleet Pack #1 – £22.00
VANFP-202 – US Fleet Pack #2 – £22.00
VANFP-203 – US Fleet Pack #3 – £22.00

Stage #2 of the upgrade programme – replacing all of the smaller vessels – begins soon, with the British fleet the first to get new cruisers and destroyers.

And finally, as always, a shout-out to Dom’s Decals for the tail markings.

ROBIN of Nottingham

After a winter break, we start off on the show trail again in February. The first event of the year is ROBIN, which is held at the Nottingham Tennis Centre on Sunday 17th of February 2019, from 10 am to 4 pm.

As always for any show, we welcome advance orders – you can either place an order and pay in advance using the collect in person option on the website, or just drop us an email with a list and pay on the day. You’ll see from the list below that I can’t bring everything, so if you would like anything from ranges that I’m not bringing with me then you’ll need to order it in advance.

I should have decent stocks of most lines, including our newest releases which range from the huge Silverback tank destroyer down to the tiny trains.

  • Celtos – Decent stock of all individual figures, small unit packs and medium and large army packs
  • Aeronef/Imperial Skies – All of the most popular fleet packs (the major powers) but not the smaller nations; a good selection of individual capital ships in blisters; rulebooks and accessories for Imperial Skies.
  • Small Scale Scenery – the full range of all models
  • Spaceships – full range of fleet packs; no individual models except for new releases
  • Hammer’s Slammers – rulebooks; the full range of 15mm models; a selection of 6mm and 15mm detachment packs
  • 15mm SF – full range of 15mm vehicles, figure packs and accessories; no buildings.
  • 6mm SF – full range of army packs, company packs and building packs; no individual models
  • Great War Belgians – full range of figures
  • Magpie Miniatures – individual figures and packs
  • Squadron Commander – full range of blisters packs; no individual models or starter packs
  • Crom’s Anvil – full range of figures
  • I will not be able to bring any 10mm SF buildings, Iron Stars or Land Ironclads miniatures unless ordered in advance.

Great Ape

The Silverback is a huge tracked tank destroyer, more massive even than one of the Slammer’s M2 blower tanks. It has a 25cm powergun as main armament, backed up by a pair of remote tri-barrel 2cm powerguns on each of the crew hatches. An assault gun version has a twin over-under shotgun-style weapon which fire ‘beehive’ canister rounds for clearing massed infantry attacks.

The Nonesuch National Guard are the primary users of the Silverback – they also use smaller tracked vehicles, the Falchion and Fauchard which we released last year. The NNG appear in the story Paying the Piper, which can be found in the third volume of collected Hammer’s Slammers stories by David Drake. They get a bit of a pasting from the Slammers – but then again, who doesn’t ?

HS15-3501 – Silverback Tank Destroyer – £11.00
HS15-3501a – Silverback Assault Gun – £11.00

Celtos Swordmaidens

Another set of customer painted models this week – this time a collection of really nicely rendered Celtos Gael female heroes and warriors from Victor Gondra.

Galea
Swordmaidens
Llysa
Amanthas
Enora

The Age of Steam

Our latest additions to the Small Scale Scenery range today are some tiny, tiny steam trains, which have been requested by several customers. We have sets of engines, passenger carriages and freight wagons, plus a special Flying Scotsman set. They’re designed to fit our existing range of track and railway buildings.

At this juncture I should point out that I’m no expert on trains; so please excuse any sloppy use of terminology…

The Steam Engines pack has four engine – two slightly different 0-6-0 tank engines, and two 4-6-2 locomotives, one with a coal tender.

The Passenger Carriages set has 15 carriages – ten 16mm long models (roughly 53′) and five at 12mm (c.40′). These include brake coaches (distinguished in this scale by having fewer windows).

The Freight Wagons set has five flat cars in two different sizes, five box cars also in two sizes and five open wagons.

And finally, one of the most famous steam engines of all (certainly in the UK) is the Flying Scotsman. The set contains the engine plus corridor tender, four passenger coaches and a brake coach. Although tiny, it’s still recognisable.

SSS-8128 – Steam Engines – £1.00
SSS-8129 – Passenger Carriages – £3.00
SSS-8130 – Freight Wagons – £3.00
SSS-8131 – The Flying Scotsman – £1.50

Thommo’s Two-mil

Nottingham modeller Simon Thompson has sent us some pictures of his really nicely painted Small Scale Scenery buildings which we thought we’d share. In particular, the shaded windows look very effective. The whole effect is grimey and industrial and very much looks the part.

Cargo Hauler

Finishing our triumvirate of weekend 15mm releases is this new cargo carrier version of the GS-1000 range of GEVs. This single piece resin model is based on the standard GS chassis with a new open cargo deck – a larger rear section that will fit one of our cargo pods, and a smaller side section for ammo boxes, fuel cans etc.

HS15-2016 – GS-1100C Cargo Carrier – £7.50

Skysweeper

Today we have a new addition to our range of 15mm SF bunkers and fortifications. The AA Bunker is a resin model that consists of a small radar-equipped control bunker with an attached mounting for a turret – generally an AA one, although there’s no reason why you couldn’t fit it with a small missile or gun turret from our extensive range. The website allows you to pick from several popular AA turrets including twin gatlings, an 8-barrel calliope or missile pods, but if you’d like to equip it with anything else then drop us a line and we’ll do our best to help.

B15-1005 – AA Bunker – £8.00

Living by Numbers

Today we’re releasing some useful new 15mm scale waterslide decals – twenty sets of vehicle tac numbers to help you identify your tanks. They come in five colours (red, yellow, blue, white and black) and each sheet has enough 2-digit numbers for 20 vehicles (two numbers per vehicle) running from the 10s up to the 80s. Each number is a fraction over 4mm high and are arranged in a regular grid to make them easier to cut out of the sheet.

I’ve tried them out on my recently painted Lightning Division armour, using red numbers as a high-contrast against the grey/white camouflage.

The decals can be found on our website under the Hammer’s Slammers range, along with all the other unit-specific decals.

DC15-012K – Black 10-20 – £4.00
DC15-034K – Black 30-40 – £4.00
DC15-056K – Black 50-60 – £4.00
DC15-078K – Black 70-80 – £4.00
DC15-012R – Red 10-20 – £4.00
DC15-034R – Red 30-40 – £4.00
DC15-056R – Red 50-60 – £4.00
DC15-078R – Red 70-80 – £4.00
DC15-012B – Blue 10-20 – £4.00
DC15-034B – Blue 30-40 – £4.00
DC15-056B – Blue 50-60 – £4.00
DC15-078B – Blue 70-80 – £4.00
DC15-012Y – Yellow 10-20 – £4.00
DC15-034Y – Yellow 30-40 – £4.00
DC15-056Y – Yellow 50-60 – £4.00
DC15-078Y – Yellow 70-80 – £4.00
DC15-012W – White 10-20 – £4.00
DC15-034W – White 30-40 – £4.00
DC15-056W – White 50-60 – £4.00
DC15-078W – White 70-80 – £4.00

Death and Taxes

Towards the end of last year, I wrote a post on the Royal Mail’s last posting dates before Christmas, commenting that I thought it would be “our least exciting post of the year“. This year I’m getting in early for that accolade with this piece.

I had a number of emails during the sale concerning the way our shopping cart system works, in particular related to the application (or non-application) of VAT – customers outside the EU worried that it hadn’t been deducted correctly, or others in the UK or Europe questioning why a big lump of tax had been added to their order when they checked out. So this is my best attempt to explain how it all works and who or what it applies to. I’m not an accountant, which I’m hoping will be an advantage as I’ll try to explain things from my layman’s point of view. I’m also looking at it from the point of view of the Brigade website only, there may be some special cases or rates that don’t apply to us, in which case I won’t complicate matters with those. So if you’re’re all sitting comfortably, then I’ll begin…

VAT
VAT stands for Value Added Tax – it’s essentially a sales tax. In the UK it’s levied on most goods and services, although only if the company supplying them is registered for VAT. Companies over a certain annual turnover threshold (currently £85000) are required to register for VAT in the UK, although ones with a lower turnover can voluntarily register (there are advantages to being registered – for example, you can claim back any VAT you pay out). Incidentally, this needs to be borne in mind for overseas customers ordering from other sites – I’ve seen complaints on TMP for example complaining that company X didn’t deduct VAT for an order from the US or Canada, when company X may simply not have been registered in the first place. But that’s by-the-by, since Brigade most certainly is VAT registered.

Rates
The current rate of VAT for most goods is 20%; there are some different rates for other specific items, but none of these apply to Brigade except for books, which are zero-rated (which means that although they are technically eligible for VAT, the current rate is 0% so no tax is charged on them).

Prices on our website or blog are always given with VAT included. So an item that is listed at £6 is actually £5 plus 20% (£1) VAT. On the website we state the amount of VAT on each item page, but if you’re trying to work it out for yourself, remember that VAT is 1/6th of the total price (not 1/5th, as might seem the obvious calculation).

The Shopping Cart
The way the cart works has changed slightly. The values that go into the cart are without VAT – so if you add our previously mentioned £6 item to the cart, the value that actually goes into it is £5 (plus the shipping cost for the item is added to the running total). VAT is only added later once you give the system your shipping address and it can then determine whether or not you need to pay the tax. If you’re within the the main 28 EU countries (not those in the EEA) then you will be charged VAT; anywhere else in the world, you won’t. So when you checkout, if your delivery address is within the EU, 20% will be added to the order total. But remember, the value that went into the cart was without VAT, so the total amount you will be charged is still the same as was stated on the website initially.

Shipping
HMRC have decreed that VAT also has to be added to any shipping costs at the same rate as the rest of the order. If you place an order for books only then that rate will be zero, so no VAT is added. If the order is a mix of books and other items, then the higher rate of 20% VAT is added to the entire shipping cost.

Example
Below are five images showing an example from start to checkout. I’ve captioned each image so as you scroll through the gallery, hopefully everything will become clear!

OK, I think that’s it – I hope it all makes sense, but if anyone has any questions (or, just as importantly, if I’ve got anything wrong or could explain it better), please let us know.

I’ll now get back to the far more interesting and important task of making little model tanks and spaceships now…