Author Archive

On My Work Bench

Posted on August 11th, 2017 under , . Posted by

When I’m not out shooting pointy sticks at round things (you’ve seen the post on archery I did earlier) I’ve been using Milliput to make a new part for my RAFM Cheetah.  While waiting for the Milliput to harden my I thought to distract myself with…

Archery Update

Posted on July 31st, 2017 under . Posted by

Me with members of my club shooting at a competition together, and clearly we are the rabble because none of us are wearing club shirts (left-to-right, Reg, Tom, me, and Lazlo).

It has been a year since I did the last post here on archery, and it has been an interesting year of shooting that would probably bore you all to tears if I went into the finer details of how to shoot an arrow.

I have not only achieved my first class archery award, but also bowman, which is as high as I can go unless I start attending record status shoots.  Quite frankly I’m not sure I have the energy and commitment to do this.  For a start it would mean travelling around the country to get to enough events to be able to shoot three or more rounds, while getting enough points to qualify, and then having to do it all again the next year.

Also, I have had to change my arrows again because my draw length increased.  The nice arrows I had borrowed from my beloved had become too short for me, and as a consequence hazardous to use–accidents can happen if you pull the arrow off the rest and let it loose. The longer arrows we had to hand are too stiff for me, and as a result my scores have dropped precipitously because I’ve lost confidence in them.

After much deliberation and worry an order was placed with Merlin Archery, and in due course the package arrived with the parts to make up a  set of ten arrows.  My first ever set of brand new arrows that I’ve bought, which are not hand-me-downs or secondhand acquisitions.

Thirty inches long, they’re like rails that go on forever.

  
Having now used them, and with help from Sailesh, my club coach, I’ve been able to tune my bow to match them and I’m hopeful I will be able to improve my scores.
   

Archery Update

Posted on July 31st, 2017 under . Posted by

Me with members of my club shooting at a competition together, and clearly we are the rabble because none of us are wearing club shirts (left-to-right, Reg, Tom, me, and Lazlo).

It has been a year since I did the last post here on archery, and it has been an interesting year of shooting that would probably bore you all to tears if I went into the finer details of how to shoot an arrow.

I have not only achieved my first class archery award, but also bowman, which is as high as I can go unless I start attending record status shoots.  Quite frankly I’m not sure I have the energy and commitment to do this.  For a start it would mean travelling around the country to get to enough events to be able to shoot three or more rounds, while getting enough points to qualify, and then having to do it all again the next year.

Also, I have had to change my arrows again because my draw length increased.  The nice arrows I had borrowed from my beloved had become too short for me, and as a consequence hazardous to use–accidents can happen if you pull the arrow off the rest and let it loose. The longer arrows we had to hand are too stiff for me, and as a result my scores have dropped precipitously because I’ve lost confidence in them.

After much deliberation and worry an order was placed with Merlin Archery, and in due course the package arrived with the parts to make up a  set of ten arrows.  My first ever set of brand new arrows that I’ve bought, which are not hand-me-downs or secondhand acquisitions.

Thirty inches long, they’re like rails that go on forever.

  
Having now used them, and with help from Sailesh, my club coach, I’ve been able to tune my bow to match them and I’m hopeful I will be able to improve my scores.
   

RAFM Cheetah WIP

Posted on July 21st, 2017 under , . Posted by

This is picture is of the pre-loved and slightly tatty Cheetah I got off eBay, which was sans butt-plate.  As luck would have it I could find no pictures on the web of the Cheetah taken from the rear.  Fortunately, I have friends who have complete Cheetahs to send me pictures of what the butt-plate should look like.

However, as luck would have it–or not, as luck only involved winning an eBay listing–I managed to buy a Whitecat.  This has the same V-motor butt-plate as the Cheetah, so I am now using this as a template to fabricate a replacement for my model.

I started by bending up a bit of wire to make a frame for the Milliput butt-plate.  Then I added the Milliput and moulded it into the rough shape I needed.  Still a bit of shaping and carving yet to do, but it has been far too nice to be sitting indoors making toy soldiers to finish the job.

And here’s the cleaned up Cheetah awaiting assembly.

   
So, more updates to come, but now it’s time to go off and shoot pointy sticks at round things: archery being lots more fun to do when the weather is nice.
  

RAFM Cheetah WIP

Posted on July 21st, 2017 under , . Posted by

This is picture is of the pre-loved and slightly tatty Cheetah I got off eBay, which was sans butt-plate.  As luck would have it I could find no pictures on the web of the Cheetah taken from the rear.  Fortunately, I have friends who have complete Cheetahs to send me pictures of what the butt-plate should look like.

However, as luck would have it–or not, as luck only involved winning an eBay listing–I managed to buy a Whitecat.  This has the same V-motor butt-plate as the Cheetah, so I am now using this as a template to fabricate a replacement for my model.

I started by bending up a bit of wire to make a frame for the Milliput butt-plate.  Then I added the Milliput and moulded it into the rough shape I needed.  Still a bit of shaping and carving yet to do, but it has been far too nice to be sitting indoors making toy soldiers to finish the job.

And here’s the cleaned up Cheetah awaiting assembly.

   
So, more updates to come, but now it’s time to go off and shoot pointy sticks at round things: archery being lots more fun to do when the weather is nice.
  

Hammers & Nails

Posted on July 14th, 2017 under . Posted by

  

 
I caught a link to a YouTube video, which I happened to have time to watch, which is not normally the case, where it ended by asking the following question:

“At what point do you want to become an advocate and a demo person for the game, for very little to no benefit?”

It’s a good question, been there and done that too.  My answer is–it depends.

What interested me about the future of Wargaming Demo Teams piece was that any answer will also depend on where you come from.  Clearly the person who is discussing this comes from a different place from me, as do a large number of the commentators who left their opinions on the video

My impression is that most think one should be paid for hours demonstrating a manufacturers game, with the details of the payment being up to the company.  Ultimately, it’s a decision the demonstrators makes if they agree to the company’s offer.

A separate question of does this make the person who is demonstrating a game an employee,  is probably subject to what classes as employment under the law of the land.

My question is, when did it become an expectation to be paid to do a hobby?  Because for the life of me a hobby is something you do for fun rather than it being work, because work is not spelt F.U.N. Call me an old fogey.  And yes I’ve been a demo agent and got perks for demoing games for the company, but I did it not for the perks, but because I loved the game I was demoing.

And as for the perks, quite frankly not worth the time and effort I put into preparing the games, and at one level were a total insult since the terms and conditions of said perks meant I largely had nothing I wanted to use them on.

I consoled myself that it encouraged me to do something I already enjoyed.  And the the company decided that they didn’t want me to demo games with the miniatures I had, I stopped.  No regrets, despite some gnashing of teeth over what I see as the shortsightedness of the decision.

But you know, not once did it even cross my mind that I was an employee of the company.
   

Hammers & Nails

Posted on July 14th, 2017 under . Posted by

  

 
I caught a link to a YouTube video, which I happened to have time to watch, which is not normally the case, where it ended by asking the following question:

“At what point do you want to become an advocate and a demo person for the game, for very little to no benefit?”

It’s a good question, been there and done that too.  My answer is–it depends.

What interested me about the future of Wargaming Demo Teams piece was that any answer will also depend on where you come from.  Clearly the person who is discussing this comes from a different place from me, as do a large number of the commentators who left their opinions on the video

My impression is that most think one should be paid for hours demonstrating a manufacturers game, with the details of the payment being up to the company.  Ultimately, it’s a decision the demonstrators makes if they agree to the company’s offer.

A separate question of does this make the person who is demonstrating a game an employee,  is probably subject to what classes as employment under the law of the land.

My question is, when did it become an expectation to be paid to do a hobby?  Because for the life of me a hobby is something you do for fun rather than it being work, because work is not spelt F.U.N. Call me an old fogey.  And yes I’ve been a demo agent and got perks for demoing games for the company, but I did it not for the perks, but because I loved the game I was demoing.

And as for the perks, quite frankly not worth the time and effort I put into preparing the games, and at one level were a total insult since the terms and conditions of said perks meant I largely had nothing I wanted to use them on.

I consoled myself that it encouraged me to do something I already enjoyed.  And the the company decided that they didn’t want me to demo games with the miniatures I had, I stopped.  No regrets, despite some gnashing of teeth over what I see as the shortsightedness of the decision.

But you know, not once did it even cross my mind that I was an employee of the company.
   

RAFM Mambas

Posted on June 23rd, 2017 under , . Posted by

Until recently I only had two Mambas.  One a brawler variant and the other was less than complete: no head and engine.  Now I have two more: a Black Mamba and a Snake Eye Mamba.  So, it looks like I have the elements of support squad.Hav…

RAFM Mambas

Posted on June 23rd, 2017 under , . Posted by

 Until recently I only had two Mambas.  One a brawler variant and the other was less than complete: no head and engine.  Now I have two more: a Black Mamba and a Snake Eye Mamba.  So, it looks like I have the elements of support squ…

Some More Size Comparisons

Posted on June 16th, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

 Didn’t realize that two of the little Dogs had broken arms, they’re that tiny, but you can see it in the picture.Back here I took some pictures of GZGs not VOTOMS, but I was asked if I could take a picture showing them next to other mecha.  …

Some More Size Comparisons

Posted on June 16th, 2017 under , , , , , . Posted by

Didn’t realize that two of the little Dogs had broken arms, they’re that tiny, but you can see it in the picture.Back here I took some pictures of GZGs not VOTOMS, but I was asked if I could take a picture showing them next to other mecha.  Hopefu…

Northern Guard Painting WIP

Posted on June 5th, 2017 under , , . Posted by

And this weekend I managed to slap some paint on my Northern Guard Gears.  Still a long way to go, but I’m one colour application closer to finishing.The Jaguar on the left has had the main green shaded, while the Hunter on the right has had the a…

Northern Guard Painting WIP

Posted on June 5th, 2017 under , , . Posted by

And this weekend I managed to slap some paint on my Northern Guard Gears.  Still a long way to go, but I’m one colour application closer to finishing.The Jaguar on the left has had the main green shaded, while the Hunter on the right has had the a…

Two Battles of X-Wing

Posted on May 22nd, 2017 under , . Posted by

Allan moving his Academy pilot forward at the beginning of the first turn on my new space mat bought from Dark Sphere games.

We played two games of X-Wing this Saturday, which made for a very busy weekend after a morning spent shooting arrow at archery practice, and then shooting again on Sunday in our club Spring Handicap competition.  More on archery next time.

Our friend Allan came around to play and have a meal, drink wine, the usual really.  He and his wife Paloma are leaving Britain for sunnier climes, though she couldn’t make today because of a family bereavement that had delayed her finishing her doctorate presentation, which was due Monday.

So, I made up two three-player scenarios, with the kittens playing the opposition and us three humans all working together to foil them, which went about as well as could be expected…

The kittens have destroyed one TIE fighter and are leading the rest on a merry chase through the asteroids.

The first scenario was based on the Millenium Falcon flying out of an asteroid belt and engaging it’s stardrive to escape, loosely based on the Empire Strikes Back.  The Falcon had Han and R2 D2 aboard with homing missiles and an upgrade to allow the bucket of bolts to do barrel rolls.

It all got a bit gnarly with ships banging into each other, which worked well for the TIEs in preventing the Falcon’s progress.

We each ran two of the Empire’s Imperial TIEs with one average and one academy pilot each.  Points wise the Falcon was outmatched, but the kittens still managed to get their very battered and beaten ship off the table.

The kittens on the verge of victory with the TIE players (Susan) insisting the Imperials being allowed one more round of firing on the Falcon as the centre pin wasn’t across the edge of the board.  Kittens still escaped though.

The second game features two X-wings escorting a Y-wing off the table.

More asteroids to fly through.

The kittens had Red Leader Garven Dreis, Red 2 Wedge Antilles, and Gold Leader Jon “Dutch” Vander facing the same motley crew of Imperial pilots: one skill four, two skill three and three skill one Academy pilots.

My two TIE fighters are bottom left and centre, and I had to turn my lead to avoid hitting the asteroid.

There was much dodging of asteroids and, the inevitable crashing into one’s own ships as the Imperials struggled to gang up on the Y-wing–our victory being dependent on destroying it before it could get off the board.

A TIE fighter about about to go boom after being shot up by the kittens, and the two remaining TIEs failed to inflict any damage when returning fire.

Wedge Antilles is a total killer because his character’s special ability is to reduce the enemy agility by one, and TIE fighters are a bit fragile if hit.

The kittens did a reverse turn with the X-wings and lined up on two soon to be ex-TIE fighters, which led to complaints from Susan that I was ‘avoiding’ the fight.

In a move that couldn’t have been staged for more laughs, I managed to crash my Academy pilot into Allan’s good pilot, and then crash my good pilot into my own Academy pilot, which caused my two TIE fighters to end up trailing the oncoming X-wing furball.

With the two TIE fighters destroyed the Y-wing slip quietly away after the only TIE that can shoot it fails to destroy it.

Points wise the game was very evenly matched, but the kittens managed to get the slightly battered Y-wing away and beat up the Imperials for their trouble.

Afterwards we ate a lovely roast beef dinner, which Susan had made, drank wine, and then watched Rogue One who hadn’t seen it, which made a perfect end to a perfect day.  I will also say that I enjoyed Rogue One more on the second watch because I was able to just relax and let the story unfold without the niggling question of where and who is that?

NBFor those of you reading this and not understanding the ‘kittens’ use in the game, they are avatars whose movement and dice are controlled by more than one of the opposition players, either in rotation or individually taking command of one ship,which makes for an interesting game.
   

Two X-Wing Battles: The Kittens Strike Back

Posted on May 22nd, 2017 under , . Posted by

Allan moving his Academy pilot forward at the beginning of the first turn on my new space mat bought from Dark Sphere games.

We played two games of X-Wing this Saturday, which made for a very busy weekend after a morning spent shooting arrow at archery practice, and then shooting again on Sunday in our club Spring Handicap competition.  More on archery here.

Our friend Allan came around to play and have a meal, drink wine, the usual really.  He and his wife Paloma are leaving Britain for sunnier climes, though she couldn’t make today because of having to finish her doctorate presentation, which was due Monday.

So, I made up two three-player scenarios, with the kittens playing the opposition and us three humans all working together to foil them, which went about as well as could be expected…

The kittens have destroyed one TIE fighter and are leading the rest on a merry chase through the asteroids.

The first scenario was based on the Millenium Falcon flying out of an asteroid belt and engaging it’s stardrive to escape, loosely based on the Empire Strikes Back.  The Falcon had Han and R2 D2 aboard with homing missiles and an upgrade to allow the bucket of bolts to do barrel rolls.

It all got a bit gnarly with ships banging into each other, which worked well for the TIEs in preventing the Falcon’s progress.

We each ran two of the Empire’s Imperial TIEs with one average and one academy pilot each.  Points wise the Falcon was outmatched, but the kittens still managed to get their very battered and beaten ship off the table.

The kittens on the verge of victory with the TIE players (Susan) insisting the Imperials being allowed one more round of firing on the Falcon as the centre pin wasn’t across the edge of the board.  Kittens still escaped though.

The second game features two X-wings escorting a Y-wing off the table.

More asteroids to fly through.

The kittens had Red Leader Garven Dreis, Red 2 Wedge Antilles, and Gold Leader Jon “Dutch” Vander facing the same motley crew of Imperial pilots: one skill four, two skill three and three skill one Academy pilots.

My two TIE fighters are bottom left and centre, and I had to turn my lead to avoid hitting the asteroid.

There was much dodging of asteroids and, the inevitable crashing into one’s own ships as the Imperials struggled to gang up on the Y-wing–our victory being dependent on destroying it before it could get off the board.

A TIE fighter about about to go boom after being shot up by the kittens, and the two remaining TIEs failed to inflict any damage when returning fire.

Wedge Antilles is a total killer because his character’s special ability is to reduce the enemy agility by one, and TIE fighters are a bit fragile if hit.

The kittens did a reverse turn with the X-wings and lined up on two soon to be ex-TIE fighters, which led to complaints from Susan that I was ‘avoiding’ the fight.

In a move that couldn’t have been staged for more laughs, I managed to crash my Academy pilot into Allan’s good pilot, and then crash my good pilot into my own Academy pilot, which caused my two TIE fighters to end up trailing the oncoming X-wing furball.

With the two TIE fighters destroyed the Y-wing slip quietly away after the only TIE that can shoot it fails to destroy it.

Points wise the game was very evenly matched, but the kittens managed to get the slightly battered Y-wing away and beat up the Imperials for their trouble.

Afterwards we ate a lovely roast beef dinner, which Susan had made, drank wine, and then watched Rogue One that Allan hadn’t yet seen, which made a perfect end to a perfect day.  I will also say that I enjoyed Rogue One more on the second watch because I was able to just relax and let the story unfold without the niggling question of where and who is that?

NBFor those of you reading this and not understanding the ‘kittens’ use in the game, they are avatars whose movement and dice are controlled by more than one of the opposition players, either in rotation or individually taking command of one ship,which makes for an interesting game.

PS: Amended title after posting.
   

Walker, Humanoid, Integrated Suit/Pilot, Engagement/Reconnaissance

Posted on May 19th, 2017 under . Posted by

   My friend Brandon Keith Fero has launched a Kickstarter for some awesome mecha called Whispers.You can pledge here.At five Whispers for $50.00 these are a steal.  I’m going to pledge when I’m paid because this it too good a deal to mi…

Walker, Humanoid, Integrated Suit/Pilot, Engagement/Reconnaissance

Posted on May 19th, 2017 under . Posted by

   My friend Brandon Keith Fero has launched a Kickstarter for some awesome mecha called Whispers.You can pledge here.At five Whispers for $50.00 these are a steal.  I’m going to pledge when I’m paid because this it too good a deal to mi…