tedlindsey.com

A place for my varied interests, artwork and hobbies

Category: Hobbies (Page 1 of 2)

Nemesis Light Strike Vehicle

This 15mm scale Nemesis is from Clearhorizon Miniatures. It’s a multi-part resin kit of a stealthy, light armored recon vehicle. The original 3D model sculpt is by Steve “Coolhand” Tyler.

The model has an aggressive, “crouched” stance that looks like a cat ready to pounce. It looks like it would be able to handle pretty rough terrain with the knobby wheels mounted on articulated armatures. Details on the hull are good with distinct panel lines, ports, hatches and louvers. Additional details include a low-profile turret atop the hull and a winch with cable spool at the front.

Nemesis Light Strike Vehicle

The model is composed of five pieces which were relatively cleanly molded. Unfortunately, the mold quality on the right side of the main body was pretty muddy with much of the fine details lost.

Muddy detail along right side

For the turret, I was able to hollow out a space for a neodymium magnet and nail head to allow for rotation.

Nemesis with Talos Troopers for scale

This was my first attempt at heavily weathering a vehicle using pigment powders for applying a filter layer and dust buildup. The light tan and pale gray/green disruptive camo pattern has been largely lost under the layers of weathering so I’ll probably need to exercise more restraint in the future. The filter layer definitely brings the colors together, a little too much in this case. Next time I’ll choose a higher contrast between the colors of the camo pattern.

Nemesis Light Strike Vehicle

Nemesis with Marine Combat Controller

Talos Exo Suits – Heavy Weapons Squad

This is a pack of Talos heavy armored infantry from White Dragon Miniatures Marine Tactical Unit line. The pack comes with four troopers and one drone.

According to the flavor text from White Dragon, two of the troopers are escorts armed with carbines, one being magazine fed and the other belt-fed. One heavy weapon trooper is armed with a 2mm railgun for pinpoint fire against vehicles or mechs while the other wields a 30mm shoulder-mounted HEAT cannon for taking out armored or entrenched targets.

30mm HEAT gunner, two escorts and railgunner

Rear View (note: drone on backpack of second trooper)

I don’t have the stand-alone drone miniature pictured here, but one of the escort troopers has a drone attached to his backpack. The drone looks suspiciously similar to a DJI Mavic Pro in its folded state, which is a cool little detail the designer slipped in.

The miniatures are up to the typical high quality of White Dragon with only a few spots where details seemed a bit mushy. Two of the troopers have subtle “stairstepping” on some upper flat surfaces that appear to be artifacts from 3D printing. There were slight mold lines that needed cleaned up, so I’m assuming the mold master was 3D printed and these miniatures are molded using a conventional process.

Second trooper has extra magazines attached to leg armor

I went for an arid desert color scheme on this squad. I’ve become quite a fan of Badger’s Stynylrez Airbrush Primers and I used a combination of black base coat, followed by highlights of gray and white applied using zenithal coverage from above. I then used Badger Minitaire Mummy as the base color which I airbrushed on and shadows picked out with GW Nuln Oil. Highlights were then applied using Vallejo Bone White.

Another side view

This is the first time I used Vallejo Diorama Effects Heavy Dirt as a basing material instead of sprinkling sand over white glue. The texture is quite nice, easy to brush on and gives more predictable results than the sand and white glue technique.

Proteus Frontline Battle Mech with Chaingun

This is my second Proteus Frontline Battle Mech from White Dragon Miniatures. This model is the chaingun variant and has a more active stance than the cannon version. The mech’s torso is rotated to the left with the chaingun clearly being aimed rather than held at rest.

As with my last Proteus model, I added a whip antennae instead of the included radar array assembly since I thought the radar diverted attention from the mech’s head, which is a really interesting wedge shape.

Proteus Battle Mech with Chaingun

For some reason, this version seemed to have more prominent print lines from the 3d printing process. They are very small and subtle but noticeable upon close inspection. I suspect I didn’t see these lines on my last Proteus because I used a rattle can of GW Black Primer whereas I airbrushed on Badger Stynylrez Black Primer for a much finer basecoat on this model.

I had success with some tips from commenter Ryan, who had left some advice in the comments of another post about getting better results with decals by using a decal softener fluid. By laying down a gloss varnish, then applying the decal and softener, it was clear that the decal adhered much better to the model. And I didn’t get a telltale white fringe around the edges of the decal material after I applied a coat of Testor’s Dull-Cote. Thanks, Ryan!

Decal on thigh of right leg

I did such a crummy job on patching up a flaw on the right shoulder/ammo box that I’m going to model some battle damage with scratched paint and exposed metal edges to cover it up.

Shoddy patchwork on shoulder

You can faintly see some of the horizontal print lines on the ammo belt but I don’t think it detracts from the model at all. In fact, I think it adds some nice visual texture.

Looking down the barrel(s)

Side by side: Cannon & Chaingun

I went for a lighter shade of green on this model, as you can see from the side-by-side image. The colors become darker and less saturated lower on the model with the head and upper torso having the lightest shades.

Marine Tactical Unit: Fire Team Charlie

This is the third set of White Dragon Miniatures depicting Marine Tactical Unit troopers. Fire Team Charlie is a heavy weapons unit equipped with missile launchers called MIPAWs.

MAIN INDIVIDUAL PORTABLE ASSAULT WEAPON: Another weapon which can be utilised by the Fireteams is the MIPAW. This is a large shoulder fired weapon able to launch an explosive missile up to a kilometre unguided, or can lock onto a friendly designated signal or ‘painted target’, further away. The MIPAW is designed to be lightweight and easily portable by a small team, allowing it to retain the flexibility of the host squad, as its low-recoil gives it the ability it to be fired on the move.

The fire team consists of a commander, a trooper with a comms backpack (possibly a combat controller), two MIPAW-equipped troopers, and finally, two more troopers, each holding a missile ready to load.

Fireteam Charlie (Front)

For this squad, I chose a darker color scheme closer to what I used for the Armadillo Support Mech, with a base of Vallejo Gunship Green. I’ve found that you really need to exaggerate the highlights and details on these 15mm models since they are so small when viewed at normal tabletop distances.

Fireteam Charlie (Rear)

Once again, White Dragon has done a fantastic job with incredible detail and great poses in this pack. I’d love to get my hands on the 28mm versions of the MTU troopers if they ever offer them for sale on the website.

Challenger Hover APC

This is one of my first vehicle purchases from Khurasan Miniatures, a Challenger Hover APC. The model is cast from resin and was remarkably clean and required very little patching or trimming of flash. I really like the bulky, utilitarian design of this model and the details such as hull panels, smoke launchers, tow rings and hinges for the armor above the hover skirts are great.

Challenger Hover APC

The two hatches are not fully weathered since I’ll be replacing them with vehicle crew miniatures from Khurasan soon.

The weapon turret is actually four separate pieces that allows the gun to be angled at different pitches as well as having 360° rotation. I hollowed out an area below the main turret hole for a neodymium magnet and glued a small metal disc to the bottom of the turret. This keeps the turret in place while allowing for full rotation.

Turret with magnet

Base coat

Masking for camouflage

Camoed out!

Armadillo Support Mech

Another great model from White Dragon Miniatures, the Armadillo is an “automated pack-mule” robot that acts as a transport and fire support unit attached to a platoon of Marines. The model comes with a large armored shield that attaches to the right side of the mech but is not shown in the photos. The shield features reactive armor blocks and smoke launchers. Also included are three options for mounted weapon: rotary cannon, grenade launcher and a missile launcher. The rotary canon is pictured here.

Armadillo Support Mech

 

Armadillo Support Mech next to Talos Trooper

Armadillo Support Mech, Front View

I’m really preferring the green color of this Armadillo to the yellower green tone I gave to the MTU Troopers. A new batch of troopers in the same darker shade of green may be in order.

Decals for Proteus Battle Mech

I finally had a chance to apply some water slide decals to the Proteus Battle Mech. Definitely not a level of detail I could have achieved by painting.

I’m having some problems with glare on the water slide decal material from certain angles. The model is coated with Testors Dullcote Flat Spray Lacquer but I can still see the shiny decal material in brightly lit environments. If anyone has suggestions on how to best resolve this problem, I’d really appreciate it.

Decals applied to shoulder, torso and cannon

Proteus Frontline Battle Mech with Cannon

This is one of the larger models from White Dragon’s line of Marine Tactical Unit 15mm miniatures. There are currently three weapon variants: cannon, chaingun and railgun. The version pictured below is the cannon variant.

Proteus Frontline Battle Mech

The model is cast from resin and is very accurate with minimal mold lines and flash. Assembly is a bit tricky to ensure that the ammo feed, cannon and arms all align correctly, so it took a little experimentation and dry fitting.

During assembly, one of the “toes” on the left foot broke off and it took a while to find. Luckily, I was able to drill and pin it for a solid fit. Another issue I encountered was that the cannon was warped and it took a bit of immersion in hot water and bending to get it straighter. It’s still not perfectly straight, but I didn’t want to risk snapping the cannon in half.

Repaired foot

The model comes with two head variants, one being very minimalist and the other (pictured here) has more details.

The design of the model is great, with an angular, functional aesthetic that reminds of the mechs from Front Mission and Metal Gear Solid. Lots of great details like smoke launchers plus optional parts like a radar array that sits atop the module behind the head. I chose not to use the radar array and instead put a long boom antennae to the left of the head.

Rear of Proteus

I went for a monochromatic color scheme using Vallejo Panzer Green with little dashes of yellow, white, pale gray and olive drab. I’m currently awaiting decals so that I can finish detailing the model out. I pinned the model to a Secret Weapon 40mm base.

Closer look at the top/front

Proteus with MTU Troopers for scale

I also have the chain gun version of the Proteus which I haven’t assembled yet. I may experiment with a camo color scheme for that one.

White Dragon’s Marine Tactical Unit Miniatures

I recently discovered the Marine Tactical Unit (MTU) 15mm miniatures line by White Dragon Miniatures. Theses are fantastic sculpts with an incredible amount of detail and really nice designs.

The MTU infantry are available as three fire teams, Alpha, Bravo and Charlie, each of which contains six troopers, all with different poses. The troopers are in suits of non-powered, full-body armor. Weapons appear to be kinetic rifles, DMRs and machine guns.

I painted these in a light camo green (Vallejo Camo Green), similar in tone to the Mjolnir armor worn by Master Chief and the Spartans from the Halo universe. Details washed in with shading ink (GW Nuln Oil) and gun details picked out with careful dry brushing. Bases are 20mm fender washers coated with white tacky glue and then sprinkled with sand and then inked and dry brushed.

Fire Team Alpha

Fire Team Bravo

There are also sets of heavier, powered armor suits called Talos Exo Suits, that are significantly bulkier and more intimidating that the standard MTU troopers. The Talos troopers are equipped with large power packs integrated into the armor that power their weapons. Weapons appear to be fusion rifles, a belt-fed grenade launcher and a flamer. The stubby antennae on each model is very easy to break. I had to replace one with a short length of wire pushed into a hole drilled with a pin vise.

Talos Exo Suits

Talos Exo Suits, rear view

White Dragon has quite a few more sets of MTU infantry as well as mechs, drones, vehicles and terrain. Looking forward to getting my hands on these!

15mm Sci-Fi Miniatures

As a kid, my first encounter with 15mm miniatures was at the local Swap Meet, where a local gaming store, Comic Castle, had a spot where they sold games and miniatures. My first purchase was a set of 15mm adventurers from the Traveller Sci-Fi RPG universe manufactured by Martian Metals. Due to the small scale of the miniatures, details were muddy, but my imagination was ignited and these are probably the first miniatures I ever attempted to paint.

Martian Metals Adventurers, Set #2001

Amazingly, I still have many of the miniatures from that original set. As you can see, my skills and tools at the time didn’t make for impressive results.

Some of my original set of adventurers

A year or so later, I obtained a game called Snapshot, a set of close combat skirmish rules also set in the Traveller universe. Snapshot had a set of starship deck plans scaled for 15mm minis and thus began my fascination with table-top gaming.

Snapshot, 1979 Edition

Along the way, I got into D&D as well as a host of other RPGs and other sci-fi and fantasy games. The next major focus on miniatures came with the debut of Warhammer 40K from Games Workshop and their colossal range of 28mm minis which continues expanding to this day. However, for the past 20 years, I’ve found it difficult to spend much time on this hobby, between work and family commitments. And 15mm minis had largely become a forgotten relic of my childhood.

Fast forward almost 40 years and I bumped into 15mm miniatures again while investigating 3D printers. I’ve always wanted to design and fabricate my own models and prototype objects that I’ve modeled in 3D and I was looking into the Form2 from FormLabs. a high resolution STL (stereolithography) 3D printer that raised the bar for what’s possible on the desktop within its price range.

One of the things I discovered was that the Form2 was being used to create prototypes and mold masters for miniatures due to its high resolution, excellent software and reliability. It seemed that many miniature manufacturers had embraced 3D design and were creating their designs digitally, giving rise to a quantum leap in detail that had not been possible using conventional techniques.

In any event, this led to me to discovering a number of great 15mm sci-fi miniature lines which has sparked my interest in miniature painting again. Granted, my time for this hobby is very limited, but I’ve always found it to be it relaxing and meditative. Hopefully, I can spend a little time on this again and I’ll be posting photos of more recent work.

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