August 30, 2013

Rinaldi Studio Tank Art Vol.3: Modern Armor

Pre Order Now for & Save 15%. The 3rd installment in the revolutionary TANKART series, Vol. 3 Modern Armor continues the trend set by the first two volumes and caters towards vehicles in the post-WWII eras. A large continent of subjects by any definition, the chapters inside are drawn from the many worldwide conflicts with an emphasis on current trends in popular modern armor subjects. 

Inside Vol. 3 Modern Armor are the usual intro chapters and 2 dedicated technique chapters, with the bulk of the volume formed around 6 unique model chapters, 5 by the main author Michael Rinaldi, including the spectacular EuroMilitaire Gold Medal winning 1/35 D9R Armored Dozer, and 2 all-new models published for the first time, and 1 new model from renowned modern armor builder Andy Taylor from the UK. The bonus author chapter is now full-length as well. 

TANKART is a book series dedicated to the instructional and inspirational efforts of Michael Rinaldi in an effort to leave no stone unturned. The chapters are focused on one kit each and deal almost entirely on the finishes involved. There are some minor construction elements involved, but the book's central theme is always on the finishes achieved and the techniques utilized in each project. Each TANKART title is 8.5" x 9.5" at 208 pages in a softcover format. The binding is a very unique "LayFlat Binding" engineered to allow the pages to open flat and stay that way on your workbench, plus each chapter includes a follow-up Quick Ref SBS (step-by-step) guide at the end for easy reference when you need a reminder of each step.

Links & Web Gems:Figure Painter Magazine Issue 4 Now Available

Figure Painter Magazine Issue 4 In this huge issue we have not one but two interviews from James Wappel the American painter and successful kickstarter entrepreneur  and Justin Gibbs, games developer from Wyrd Miniatures. We also have reviews of Pontosh the Archer, Michael Kontraros Collectibles' Elf dragon Prince, APG's Hessien Jeager & Guild of Harmony's Arielle. There is also four fantastic tutorials that will help painters of every skill level, plus all the regular features including show reports, reader gallery, whats on the market and the best of the latest miniature release's.

FPM is available as a downloaded PDF for less then $2.00 a copy.  FPM is a new independent magazine dedicated to sculpting, painting, displaying, collecting and gaming with miniature figures from all genre's. The magazine has details on new releases, reviews, interviews with the industries top painters and sculptors, show reports, tutorials and a user gallery. 

August 28, 2013

Tips & Tricks: Reference Chart for Scales?

Confused about scales of figures and miniatures? The size of a miniature, relative to what it is a replica of, is known as the scale of the figure. For no particularly good reason, two different systems are used to rate scale.
  • Some scales are given as a ratio, variously written as either a ratio (i.e., 1:300 or 1.300) or a fraction (i.e., 1/300). The number on the right of the pair indicates how many units (inches or centimeters) on the original are equivalent to one unit on the replica. For example, with a 1:300 scale miniature, if the miniature is 1" long, then the original was 300" in length. In spoken English, you would say 1/300 as "one [pause] three hundred scale."
  • Other scales are simply listed as a certain height, such as 15mm or 54mm. Most people usually think of this as being the height of an average man (i.e., in 15mm scale, men are 15mm high), but there is a lot of confusion on this issue. According to some experts (but not all), "traditional" figure heights are measured to eye level, since measuring to the top of the head is impractical for figures wearing headgear (as many military figures do). Therefore, when a manufacturer says his figures are (for instance) 25mm scale, he might mean "25mm to top of the head" or "25mm to eye level."
As a final note, even figures which ostensibly are in the same scale may differ considerably in body build, head size, and general sculpting style - even when made by the same manufacturer! Plastic figures may be sculpted in a thinner style than metal figures. Therefore, if you are concerned whether you can mix figures from different product lines or companies and have them look appropriate, you may first want to order samples from the manufacturer.

August 27, 2013

A beautiful WWI Diorama Featuring 1/32nd Scale Pre-painted Pewter Figures

Here's a neat 1/32nd scale WWI diorama featuring pre-painted pewter figures manufactured a few years ago by Frontline Figures. This shows that you don't have to be a world class figure painter to create beautiful displays and dioramas. A most excellent scene!

August 26, 2013

LINKS & WEB GEMS: 1/72nd Scale Dioramas by Michdioramas

Are you a fan of 1/72nd scale (and who isn't?) then you should check out the incredible 1/72nd scale dioramas and figures created by Michdioramas. There is not much information available on the site about who this is (it's a French site with French text) but the dioramas are fantastic. They range from Ancients to Modern and many show the progression in building them. Lot's of great inspriation here. My favorite is The Battle of Arsuf , a Battle of the Third Crusade in 1191AD. The most current one appears to be The Market which is also featured on the Michdiorams Face Book Page.  Highly recommended and another of our favorite Links & Web Gems!

August 25, 2013

Four New WWII 1/72nd Scale Figure Sets from Heller

Heller of France has released four new World War II 1/72nd scale plastic figure sets.

HLR-49601 1/72 US Infantry
HLR-49602 1/72 French Infantry
HLR-49603 1/72 Russian Infantry
HLR-49604 1/72 British Infantry

These sets are a strange hybrid of all new poses and several in each set copied from original ESCI figures with the French set even having several poses from Pegasus Hobbies. Since the molds and therefore the sprues and  are new these are not reissues from the original molds. Perhaps they were saving money on development and sculpting. Perhaps this was done as some sort of arrangement with ESCI. Either way it's an interesting batch of old & new WWII figures.

View & Order Here

August 21, 2013

August 18, 2013

FireForge Games are looking to the Far East

FireForge Games who produce the very popular medieval Templars and Teutonic knights and the Deus Vult historical game system are looking to the Far East with their upcoming 28mm plastic project as it seems the Golden Horde is about to descend. Check out the Work-in-Progress (WIP) first sculpts for their Mongol Light Cavalry. Look for these in late 2013. Also check out their Facebook page with lots of great images of painted figures to use as guides or inspiration! painted figures

August 16, 2013

'War Against Fascism' Surprise Release from Pegasus Hobbies

For years Pegasus has teased collectors about their rumored War Against Fascism set. Well here it is and it will be available in the next batch of releases that will appear in late September (see earlier post on these).
Pre Order Now
PLEASE NOTE: The sprue pictured is a test shot and the not color that will be commercially released. 

August 14, 2013

'Gettysburg: The Last Invasion' A Must Read!

I just finished a fantastic new book called 'Gettysburg: The Last Invasion' by Allen C. Guelzo a brilliant new history—the most intimate and richly readable account I have read—on the climactic three-day battle of Gettysburg, it draws you into the heat, smoke, and grime of Gettysburg alongside the ordinary soldier, and depicts the combination of personalities and circumstances that produced the greatest battle of the Civil War, and one of the greatest in human history. I recommend this book to anyone interested in the Civil War. 

The cover happens to feature one of my all time favorite images from the Civil War. The Matthew Brady photograph of Confederate prisoners at Gettysburg. I love this image so much I made it into a set a few years back. Have a look and let me know what you think:

Image from The National Archives Website

Old Northwest IOW-1001 Images of War: Forever a Rebel

Original Stereo View from My Personal Collection

August 13, 2013

LINKS & WEB GEMS: Henk of Holland A Site Dedicated to 1/72 and 1/76 Military Modeling

Henk Timmerman from Holland has a fantastic web site Henk of Holland dedicated to /72 and 1/76 scale modeling. Here you will find a wealth of information on all major manufactures of resin and plastic kits, figures, decals. There is box art, sprue scans, built up models, catalogs, tips and so much more here too! A must bookmark for anyone into braille scale modeling! 

August 12, 2013

Giant Restock of GSI Creos /Gunze Sangyo Mr. Hobby Products

We have received our huge restock shipment from GSI-Gunze Sangyo.  Year in and year out these products are among our best sellers. GSI primers including the fantastic Mr. Surfacer 1200 spray and brush-on primer are considered by many to be the absolute best on the market. GSI products are very hard to get and we are lucky if we get one or two shipments a year. These always sell out long before we are able to get our next shipment. Grab them while you can

Some of the restocked products:
GNZ-B505 Mr. Surfacer 500 Spray Primer (100ml)
GNZ-B506 Mr. Surfacer 500 Spray Primer (100ml)
GNZ-B511 Mr. White Surfacer 1000 Spray Primer (170ml) 
GNZ-B514 Mr. Super Clear Flat Spray (170ml) 
GNZ-B515 Mr. Surfacer 1200 Gray Spray Primer (170ml) 
GNZ-B516 Mr. Resin Spray Primer (180ml) 
GNZ-B517 Mr. Resin Spray Primer (180ml) 
GNZ-B518 Mr. Base White 1000 Spray Primer (180ml) 
GNZ-B519 Mr. Surfacer 1000 Deluxe Spray Primer (170ml) 
GNZ-B524 Mr. Primer Surfacer 1000 170ml 
GNZ-M132 Mr. Masking Sol Neo (25ml) 
GNZ-M133 Mr. Masking Sol R 
GNZ-P118 Mr. White Putty 
GNZ-P119 Mr. Dissolved Putty 
GNZ-SF283 Mr. Base White 1000 Brush-On Primer (40ml) 
GNZ-SF284 Mr. Surfacer 1000 Brush-On Primer (40ml) 
GNZ-SF285 Mr. Surfacer 500 Brush-On Primer 40ml Bottle 
GNZ-SF286 Mr. Surfacer 1200 Brush-On Primer 40ml Bottle 
GNZ-SF287 Mr. Primer Surfacer 1000 Brush-On Primer 40ml Bottle 
GNZ-T101 Mr. Color Paint Thinner 50ml Bottle
GNZ-T102 Mr. Color Paint Thinner 110ml Bottle
GNZ-T103 Mr. Color Paint Thinner 250ml Bottle
GNZ-T104 Mr. Color Paint Thinner 400ml Bottle
GNZ-T115 Mr Color Replenishing Agent 
GNZ-T114 Mr. Paint Remover 40ml Bottle 
GNZ-T113 Mr. Tool Cleaner 250ml Bottle 
GNZ-T110 Aqueous Color Thinner (110ml) 
GNZ-T108 Mr. Leveling Thinner 400ml Bottle 
GNZ-T106 Mr. Leveling Thinner 110ml Bottle 

August 11, 2013

Toys in the Attic - The Wacky Wonderful World of Weird-Ohs

Time for another self indulgent 'Toys in the Attic' trip down memory lane for this baby enter The Wacky Wonderful World of Weird-Ohs...Monster and Hot Rod history was made back in 1963 when the Hawk Model Company unleashed the Weird-Ohs. They were freaky little drag fiends, and they caught on like a plague! Toys, records, trading cards, and Halloween masks were soon to follow, and the strange little twerps created by Bill Campbell became legendary. 

I can't remember how many of these things I built, blew up and built again but I do know I spent countless hours on my paper route earning money so I could get my hands on the next kit in the wacky in the world of Weird-Ohs, hands down my favorite models from the early 60s. Who was your favorite Weird-Oh? Endsville Eddie was mine followed closely by Daddy! 
 Daddy built in 1964 by yours truly! 

A brief history of the Weird-ohs:
The Hawk Model Company, founded in 1926, produced a staggering variety of car, plane, and boat model kits during the 50’s and 60’s.  But by 1963, William “Bill” Campbell, a free-lance artist who illustrated many box-covers for Hawk, felt that the car model market was saturated.  He dreamed up some ‘monsters in hot rods’ along the lines of Ed “Big Daddy” Roth’s popular T-shirt designs.  He made up some prototypes for his monster models using wire armature, balsa, marble dust, sculpting putty, and miscellaneous kit parts.  As Campbell recalled, “I brought my little monsters into Hawk one day. Dick and Phil said, ‘They are interesting Bill. We’ll think about it.’ I had been around operations long enough to know that this is the friendly kiss of death. So I left my models with them and went back to illustrating the next box art. Somehow these models ended up on the conference room table where Hawk would host distributors. On that day they were courting a group through the workings of the plant. Upon arrival in the conference room, they saw my little monsters lined up on the table and they went nuts over them. That is how the Weird-Ohs were given the nod for production.” The designs were rushed into development for the upcoming model trade show in Chicago. Following a successful debut at the show where these new freaks on wheels received over a quarter million advance orders, Hawk released the original three Weird-Ohs ‘car-icky-tures’: Daddy, a commuter; Digger, a dragster; and Davy, a biker.  The response was phenomenal and a run-away fad began.  Even working overtime, the company could not produce enough kits to keep the store shelves stocked.  Additional Weird-Ohs followed, all with Bill Campbell’s distinctive box-art.  Weird-Ohs sport wild, blood-shot eyes, shark-like teeth, dangling tongues, and a broad range of putrid skin colors.  The cars have over-sided slick tires, flaming exhaust, and bizarre accessories (like Endsville Eddie's anchor and Drag Hag's baby bottle shifter).  Each kit has additional props (like Daddy's martini and Leaky Boat Louie's swimming area float) to add to the fun. There was no toy on the market like them back then, and there have been few comparable items since.  It was so unique the Weird-Ohs brand was extended to games, Halloween masks, bubble gum trading cards, a record entitled ‘The Sounds of the Weird-Ohs’, special ‘Weird-Ohs’ paints, puzzles, nutty mads and notebooks! Campbell created two more series of model kits called Silly Surfers and Frantics to mine the popularity of the Weird-Ohs but more on those in future Toys in the Attic postings. In the late 90’s, a computer animated series based on Weird-Ohs was seen on Fox Family but it was thankfully short-lived. The Weird-Ohs have been reissued several times over the years. The late 60s/early 70s Hawk issued them as glow in the dark kits, They appeared under the name Grodies in the 1980s which were produced in Mexico by Testors. In the 1990s Testors again reissued them in new packing and finally when the Hawk brand was purchased a few years ago the new owners reissued them with the original box art. They even attempted to revive the craze with PVC figures and a reissue of the trading cards. 

And here they are…

A. Daddy - The Way Out Suburbanite, B. Digger - The Way Out Dragster, C. Davey - The Way Out Cyclist, D. Drag Hag - The Bonny, Blastin' Babe, E. Freddie Flameout - The Way Out Jet Jockey, F. Leaky Boat Louie - The Vulger Boatman, G. Huey's Hut Rod – The Way Outhouse Bomb, H. Killer McBash - The Dazzling Decimator, I. Endsville Eddie – The Short Stop Stupe, J. Francis the Foul - The Way Out Dribbler, K. Sling Rave Curvette - The Way Out Spectator, L. Wade A. Minut - The Wild Starter

Weirdsville Customizing Set

Weird-Oh Crazy Cool Colors Paints 

Weird-Ohs Game by Ideal

Weird-Ohs Puzzle: Daddy, Davey, Digger and Freddy each had one. 

Weird-Ohs Bubble Gum Cards by Fleer

The Sounds of the Weird-Ohs  Record Album

Weird-Ohs Helmet by Ideal

Weird-Ohs Davey Halloween Mask
Weird-Ohs Carry Case by Kaboom
Weird-Ohs Binder by Kaboom
Weird-Oh Nutty Mads by Marx. Eddie, Digger Drag-Hag, Daddy, Freddie & Davey were produced.

My well worn copy of Monster Make-Up featuring the weird-ohs.
Late 1960s Box for Glow in the Dark kit

Grodies Box 1980s

Testors Box 1990s