Sandbox Skirmish


Village Fields

I have been side tracked into terrain making again but this time it's fairly straightforward and painless, I hope. These are small fields and garden plots for the Sandbox Skirmish project, designed to be placed around the Red Vectors village buildings that I have yet to construct, although some of the smaller Blotz buildings can also be used for rural areas. I've used acrylic paste and sand to texture them but will add a few stones as well around he edges, as my grandad used to tell me that the Pathan farmers would pile them up then use them as cover for sniping at his plane! I have some Javis grass mat that I got from somewhere or other (?) which I will cut up and use as crops for some of the fields, with some of the others as harvested or fallow ground. 

» View Source Article

Roads and Tracks

It's about time I sorted out some roadways or tracks for the Sandbox Skirmish terrain building project, so I've taken the easy route and ordered three sets of 50mm wide roadway templates from Supreme Littleness Designs. These aren't cheap but do take the effort out of cutting my own road sections from cork tiles or some other material, as I originally intended. They are a bit on the narrow side for 15mm but if I use them as dirt tracks rather than paved roads that wouldn't be a problem.In theory, all I will have to do is texture the sections with acrylic paste or a PVA and filler mix, then just paint them. I may join some sections together beforehand, however, in order to avoid the pieces shifting about too much on the terrain board. If I have any spare sections, I might even make some streams or irrigation channels, although I do have some hedgerow bases from ERM that I could use for this instead, only having to cut some corner pieces to make them useable?

» View Source Article

Palm Tree and Oasis Features Finished

I've managed to finish the palm tree cluster bases and the two oasis features this afternoon, adding some dry brushing to the trees and some gloss varnish to the ponds, having scrapped the acrylic sheet as it didn't look very good. I'm sure if I was making 28mm oasis terrain the acrylic sheeting would be fine but in 15mm it looked overscale. I also spilled some PVA onto it by mistake which spoiled the water effect. I may add another coat of gloss varnish to the ponds later on to give a bit more of a reflective surface but I think like look fine as they are.The tree cluster bases came out okay in the end but I suspect that they will shed their green paint if they get handled too much and will need to be repaired as a result. I ended up with eleven of these as some of the tree trunk prongs snapped off, so I've saved the broken ones for other things. I will be making some more arid acacia type tree bases to match these ones anyway, so if they play up I can use those instead. I have had enough of terrain making f

» View Source Article

Palm Tree Painting Progress

I've painted the bases and the oasis templates this morning, so that they are ready to be assembled and then have a few finishing touches added. The bases have been drilled for the trees to be attached but I'm a bit worried that they might snap off if handled roughly, so will go overboard with the glue to make sure they are firmly attached. I may also add some flock or static grass to bed them in and relieve the monotone sandy effect. The oasis ponds have also been painted and I'm waiting for them to dry so that I can drop in the acetate sheet. In the meantime, I'm dry brushing the tree trunks and palm fronds, so that they are a little more interesting to look at.

» View Source Article

Stollys, Ferrets and Battle Taxis

There's a QRF 20% discount offer at the moment, so I took advantage of it, as I'm not going to Warfare this year. I have ordered an Alvis Stalwart, which was used in Aden and the Radfan due to it's off road mobility, a couple of turretless Ferret Mk1 scout cars, just because they're cool and I want a real one, together with a single FV432 APC, which also made an appearance in Aden despite being newly introduced into British Army service. These will all be added to my vehicle collection for the Sandbox Skirmish project which means that there will be plenty of transport and armoured support, albeit in limited numbers for scenarios, which will be very much infantry focussed.

» View Source Article

Palm Trees and Porridge Coated Jaffa Cakes

I've base coated the palm trees today, using rattle cans of Humbrol Grass Green and Halfords Camouflage Brown, so that I can base them and then paint them properly tomorrow. I had to prune all the plastic flash from the palm tree fronds first, which took ages but had to be done otherwise they would look rubbish. The bases were assembled, then trimmed on the edges and filed down to give a sloped profile, before being smothered in a PVA and filler mix. They look a bit like porridge coated jaffa cakes but I've smoothed them over a bit with some acrylic paste, both to hide the edge and to provide a good key for the emulsion paint basecoat that I'll slap on tomorrow.

» View Source Article

Palm Tree Terrain Plans

 I have organised all the bits for a palm tree blitz this weekend including a couple of oasis templates from Charlie Foxtrot, some additional 50mm diameter round mdf bases and some cheapo plastic palm trees that I bought ages ago for AK47. The plan is to re-paint the palm trees so that they can be attached in clusters of two or three to the bases, with a second smaller base glued onto the 50mm one so that the palm tree basing wires have something to stick in to, then texture the whole lot with a combination of PVA and filler or acrylic paste. I have fifteen bases to complete so that I can use them as scatter terrain and also plug them into the oasis features. I might make a couple of drop in tent and stores bases so that I can make a camp around one of the oases for the rebels. I also have some Woodlands Scenics tree armatures that I can make some more 50mm 'drop in' bases with, so that I can use the oasis features as arid desert watering holes, way up in the mountainous badlands of the back of beyo

» View Source Article

1/100 Westland Wessex

I have splashed out on a diecast 1/100 scale Westland Wessex for the Sandbox Skirmish project this evening, after getting an eBay tip off from fellow gamer Colin over on The Wargames Website thread. It wasn't cheap and so I could only stretch to one rather than the two or three I'd really like to deploy, but one is better than none at all. When it lands on my doorstep, I will re-paint it as a Wessex Commando, ready for transporting the British infantry and dropping them off in the middle of nowhere!

» View Source Article

Rebel APC Transport

I found an old 15mm Skytrex BTR 152 APC at the bottom of the AK47 bits box yesterday, while looking for stowage to add to the Landrover. It is a bit knackered and there's even a hole in the bottom but I'm going to add it to the rebel transport capability, which at the moment consists of a GAZ truck and four camels! I also have a cunning plan to make a modular  'drop in' plastic card base that I will glue a bunch of militia figures to, having chopped them off at the midriff, so that I can have it loaded up with footsore rebels or rapidly unloaded when they realise what a splendid target it makes for the Hawker Hunter fighter bombers. I think it will look pretty good?

» View Source Article

LWB Landrover Conversion

 I haven't done much today for the Sandbox Skirmish wargaming project except for a bit of work to convert a standard Peter Pig Long Wheel Base Landrover model into something like a mine protected patrol vehicle, as seen on the streets of Aden and mountains of the Radfan in the 1960's. This was a simple, or so I thought, matter of adding a roll bar and wire cutter from brass wire, a radio box on the front bumper and some stowage in the back. I'd made this model several times before for AK47 armies, so there should have been no unpleasantries or colourful language involved.It took me about an hour to get all the right bits in the right places, which is bonkers given that the basic model only has six parts and I left one of those off! The roll bars were a bit of a pain and the wire cutter still needs some brackets but I got to the end eventually after quite a lot of trial and error. The three man crew have been undercoated so aren't available but they consist of a driver, front passenger and radio man in th

» View Source Article

Whirlibirds!

I've won a second Heller 1/100 scale Alouette II kit on eBay, so now don't need to make the only one I had and can save it for my AK47 Colonial Settlers army. Ideally, I'd get a Westland Scout or Bell  Sioux for the Sandbox Skirmish project but no one makes them in 15mm. There isn't even a Westland Wessex and/or Sikorsky Choctaw available, which is bonkers as they were used on all sorts of conflicts from Vietnam to the Falklands! Anyway, I will have a helicopter as a spotter and for casualty evacuation when things go pear shaped up in the back of beyond. I've also seen a lovely little 15mm model of an Auster from Old Glory UK which is very tempting but a little bit extravagant.

» View Source Article

Anti Mine Landrovers

I'm waiting for my order from QRF to turn up, complete with the Humber Pigs and SWB Landrover, but in the meantime I have a Peter Pig LWB Landrover that needs converting into a mine protected vehicle. These came in both SWB and LWB format and were used for all sorts of things, so I really should have one for the platoon CO group to drive about in. I will need to make both the roll over bars and the wire cutter attachment for the front, as well as adding a radio box on the front bumper and some assorted stowage in the back. I already have a three man crew sorted, so I will get on with the conversion work tomorrow.

» View Source Article

British Infantry Platoon Prepared

I cleaned up and undercoated the British infantry platoon for the Sandbox Skirmish project yesterday. In the process, I decided to add a dog handler using a spare crew figure, a Sterling SMG from MJ Miniatures and a dog from a Peter Pig Vietnam figure. I also added an engineer with a mine detector and a Vickers MMG, with simple head swaps using the modern bush hat heads pack and a couple of WW2 British figures. All of these have been undercoated in Halfords Ultra Matt Khaki, ready for some blocking in, although I'm wondering if an overall ink wash might be good idea first? I'm also thinking of giving the platoon an identity of some sort but it's a toss up between the Royal Marines or the Somerset and Cornwall Light Infantry, both of which were deployed to Aden in the mid-1960's? Answers on a post card please!

» View Source Article

Radfan Hill Fort

I felt like scratch building something this morning, so I did this. It's a small hill fort tower made from an old Warbases 28mm modular building kit cut down to size and then modified with the addition of slit windows, a doorway and a staircase. The whole thing is designed to sit on top of one of the re-painted hills that I did last weekend, with the original plan being to build a platform on to the top so that the tower could be slotted into it. I think it looks fine just sitting on the hill, so I will probably save myself a lot of time and hassle and just adapt the tower base to fit the hill contours. I will texture and paint the tower later on. 

» View Source Article