Thursday, 31 January 2013

Weekly News: Dusty Delay

Yesterday evening I decided to take a small break from paining and wanted to save earth from the invasion of villainous aliens, aka. I played a game of "X-COM: Enemy Unknown". During a tremendous gunfight with some invaders the fans of my computer accelerated and made a rather loud whooshing sound. Unfortunately it wasn't a sign of support of my loyal comrade but a sign of deadly peril: The CPU temperature raise to a dangerous level! Since it was rather late already I decided to turn the computer of and check it today.

After a uneasy night -not because of the computer, because of our daughter who joined us at about two o'clock- I but my old friend on the operating table and opened his chest carefully. At first glance I realized that he had to pay for my last efforts on my workbench. The whole interior was covered with fine dusty powder; probably the remains of my last airbrushing sessions.
Can any of you distinguish the different colour particles in the dust?

However I decided to give my computer a long and comfortable hoover session after which he looked in the more or less clean state he's used to.

But I decided to go a step further. I spent the whole day with cleaning and tidying up my workbench and the storage room it is located in. Finally I turned this deadly trap for any allergy sufferer into a more or less pleasant place. Actually I suppose it wasn't cleaner since who moved here.
My dear fellow Old Nick will be delighted to read that because he'll spent the next night at ours and will have a camp bed in here. Anyhow judge the result yourselves:
Monty's workbench as clean as possible.
You see the workbench prepared for the next painting session. My recent project the Austrians in front of my new "Painting Chest" another outcome of this weeks work. Technically I took an old wooden box and inserted some separation slats. Now I can sort my paints in it and take it to the living room or wherever for some painting work.
My "Painting Chest"...
In spite of all those imponderabilia I was able to get some more paint onto my Austrians. At least the facings, the muskets and some minor parts are painted now. Here's a snapshot of them with a close-up view of my favourite miniature in this batch: The sapper.
The first half of the Hoch- und Deutschmeister. Some more progress.

Monday, 28 January 2013

Weekly News: Airbrush success and Austrians approaching

Last weeks airbrush-session was a full success. I managed to spray my Napoleonic Austrians with Vallejo Model Colour "Off-White" and their backpacks with "Saddle Brown". Thereby a great part of the work with was made en masse. After about an hour of spraying and cleaning there were 36 audacious Austrians on my workbench:
The future Infanterieregiment No. 4 "Hoch- und Deutschmeister"
But I haven't been inactive since Wednesday. On Friday and today I had company of a dear fellow of mine and we held two nice painting sessions. While he was working on his own Austrian I took the opportunity to paint skin colour, gaiters, caskets, muskets and some other details on 18 of the boys. Although there is some work to come I'm confident that I'll finish the first half of the regiment soon.

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Weekly News: Trees, Primer and Protectiv Gear

This afternoon I will have the rare opportunity to undertake a long airbrushing session because Mrs. Monty and our daughter will visit some friends of hers. But to prepare that there were three dozens of Austrian infantrymen which had to be undercoated. But with about 5 °C below zero priming on the balcony is impossible. Against better knowledge I decided to spray the miniatures indoors on my workbench. I opened the window as wide as possible and put on all protective gear I had:
Protected Monty
However it worked rather well and I didn't smell any solvent. Besides that the only disadvantage is the fine white powder which set down on all surfaces directly near the spraying box... However the afternoon airbrushing session is save.

Besides that the last week was a time of unfinished tales on my workbench:

Friday, 18 January 2013

From Russia without love: Grande Armée retreating in 1812

Currently Bernhard, a wargaming fellow of mine, is working on a ruleset for Napoleonic skirmish games. More precisely it will be a game broaching the issue of the retreat of the French Army from Russia in 1812. To support this I decided to prepare a small force of scattered Frenchmen. I used parts from the Victrix Old Guard Grenadiers, from the British Line Infantry and some greenstuff to make these five fellows:
Some scattered veterans of the Grande Armée
Although I'm really humble with greenstuff, it was great fun to alter those miniatures. I'm very curious how they will turn out painted. However there'll be more conversions to follow. My goal is to get about a dozen of those guys which should be enough for Bernhard's skirmish game.

By the way Russia 1812 seems to be an issue for several professional manufacturers at present. The Perrys as well as Westfalia Miniatures will make some nice and impressive figures soon. Here are some preview pictures:
Perry greens for retreating French infantry (look at their site here)
An excellent Napoleonic sledge from Westfalia which should be available end of January (here is their site)
You all probably know the Perrys since they've been making excellent miniatures for years but have you heard from the second company?
Few of you must have. For example Michael Awdry from 28mm Victorian Warfare Blog excellently painted some of their funny rude Highlanders (here). However Westfalia is a very small Germany based manufacturer who makes very special miniatures and models which the "Great Ones" don't offer. The quality as far as I have seen is great and the atmosphere of the models is awesome. When you're interested in Napoleonics, then you should definitely have a look at their homepage (here).

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Weekly News: First Birthday of Monty's Caravan !

One year ago on 10th January 2012 Monty's Caravan went online. Actually it started as a kind of self-motivation-workbench-diary-thing but since then I got so much kind support by my highly valued readers that the blog earned its own right to exist.

Thank you all a lot for that !

So after one year please allow me, to present some statistics:

Posts: 74 (average 1.5 posts per week)

Followers: 122

Visits: 19.930 (best month was November 2012 with 3.242 visits)

Comments: 585

Your favoured articles:
1.) 505 visits: Bolt Action Game Report 09th November 2012 
2.) 371 visits: Liebster Blog Award for Monty's Caravan ! 
3.) 299 visits: Blackpowder AAR: The 2nd Siege of Kolberg (fictional Napoleonic)

This year of blogging was a new experience and a lot of fun for me and I'm looking forward to the next year in the bloggosphere. I got acquainted with a lot of interesting blogs and friendly people (that's you!) and I hope to spend more great time here in 2013.

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Reviewing Black Watch

First of all thanks for the kind comments and good wishes. Although breathing is still a bit difficult, my cough seems to get better. Hopefully the antibiotics do their work well.

However I used this afternoon for the last finishing touches on my Black Watch Highlanders. After the poor snapshot which I used last week to prove that painting was finished in 2012, here is a much better one. I hope, you enjoy it:
My interpretation of the I / 42nd (Highland) Reginent of Foot (Black Watch) during the Napoleonic Wars.
Here's a short review:

Friday, 4 January 2013

Pneumonia projects

Some family traditions are really weird. In my family it seems to arise the habit to pass someone's illness to another family member:
At Christmas Eve I started to cough a bit. A few days later it grew worse and a sore throat joined it. After my family doctor returned from her holiday I visited her this morning and after some auscultation and X-ray examination she diagnosed pneumonia within my right lung. That sounds worse than I feel but it means at least two weeks of antibiotics and the interdiction to work. Fortunately it's not too infectious and I don't have to go to the hospital.

Therefore I'll try to use the time as productive as possible and maybe I'll get some projects continued or even finished.