Friday, April 27, 2012
Making needlepoint plastic mesh armies. Buy a sheet of either #10 (smallest) or #7 (bottom 3 strips above) needlepoint plastic mesh. Using an exacto knife make the appropriate cuts in the plastic mesh. Horses are done with the Van Pelt cut which can be found here. I use a modified Van Pelt cut, leaving the horses connected to speed painting.
Infantry are simple vertical cuts. Top half of infantry painted with coat colors or flesh and bottom half are pants color or flesh. Yes, your Picts and Gauls can be their naked selves without offending anyone. Top of plastic infantry peg is painted an appropriate helmet/hat color. Part of the fun is figuring out a simple paint scheme, and painting is fast. I use craft paint, prefer Ceramcoat (if I can find) or Apple Barrel.
Round shields are made with 1/8" paper punch for #7 mesh and 1/16" paper punch for #10 mesh. These paper punches are available at Michaels, use your discount coupons to reduce cost further.
Making rectangular shields. Tiny scissors and marking off card stock piece at between 1/8" & 1/16" (for #7) then cutting strips length-wise, guesstimate the cross cut. Some shields are closer to square, but work. Dot of glue on plastic & dot of glue on small pot sticker, pick up card stock, flip and attach. By the last couple it's an easy routine. The cutting is easier because you can make so many, fast. Discard or trim the excess cardstock.
I mount my completed strips on balsa (I use DBA and DBA-HX standards for 15mms, but minimum stand size is 20mm, 15mm stands are just too full ) with Aleene's Quick drying Tacky Glue and balancing them for a minute with a small pot sticker.
I use 4" X 6" photo storage boxes (also found at Michaels) to store armies. Since they are so light, you can double stack them inside boxes.
Please look at previous entries. Clicking on photos enlarges them, so you can determine the patterns I used for mounting them on bases. Any questions, just ask.
Thursday, April 26, 2012
Overall view with Hittites on left and New Kingdom Egyptians on right (above).
Hittite spears with shields and Psiloi and Horde.
New Kingdom Egyptians with archers in rear.
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
On the left with the red shields are the Late Eastern Romans done with #10 Needlecraft Plastic Mesh. On the right are the Early Hoplite Spartans with the black shields, using #7 Needlecraft Plastic Mesh.. The red shields were done with a 1/16 paper punch & card stock. The black shields were done with a 1/8 paper punch. Placing of shields is accomplished with the smallest pot stickers I had. An interesting technique to pick up, flip and place.
I know the Romans should have rectangular shields, but I was unable to cut out that shape, that small and opted for the round paper punch approach. Though, I'm experimenting with excess strips from the plastic mesh.
Time to clean up the armies with spot painting, shields, flags and dullcote-ing.
Monday, April 16, 2012
1/8 inch paper punch and card stock provides shields for the #7 Plastic mesh Athenians on the left. Original hair roller Athenians on right.
Psiloi to the front. #7 Plastic mesh on left, hair roller Athenians on right.
Scale comparison. Left original hair roller army (2 or 3mm ?), middle is #7 Needlecraft plastic mesh with cardstock shields (6mm ?), 15mm Marian Romans on the right.
Sunday, April 15, 2012
Used up the remaining spare horses to make a Mongol army (above, right). On left is Late Eastern Romans. In middle is Attila's army. Other photos follow.
Thursday, April 12, 2012
Wednesday, April 11, 2012
Monday, April 9, 2012
Saturday, April 7, 2012
Friday, April 6, 2012
What started as an effort to make armies quickly and easily has ended up being a bigger challenge than I anticipated. My eyes, hands and fingers just don't work well enough any more to tackle this type of project. But, I will push on to make 6 artillery stands and finish up the 3 Napoleonic Armies. And anticipate finding 10 suitable rollers to do the Austrian and Prussians.
Trying to figure out this Aleene's Quick Dry Tacky Glue has been an experience. Not as easy to glue one's fingers together as "crazy glue", but has caused bowed bases and trying to balance the PMS (Plastic Mesh Sheets) horses is a real patience tester.
Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Discovered that my hair roller armies are actually 3mm. Which has resulted in another version of horses to be cut from the #10 needlepoint plastic mesh. This time 1 1/2 rows. (Photo above)
Took another trip to Sally's Beauty Supply (the places my hobby has taken me over the decades) and found some Nitecurl rollers (above, right). However, it looks like the roller design has changed from the type recommended by Kenneth Van Pelt at The Penny Whistle. A lot of sprue on the bottom and the bodies appear to be not as tall. On the left, above is my orignial hair rollers.
So this is going to take a lot more thought than I intended as I try to figure out how to proceed. I don't have enough of the 3mm hair rollers to build the Austrians & Prussians armies to give me the the 5 Napoleonic armies I was originally after.
However, along the way I have a lot of 4 to 5mm horses, which I can salvage into a Late Eastern Roman army and Attila's Hun army made entirely from the #10 plastic mesh for needlecraft.
Now how the heck did that happen ? Did I mention that I have a #7 size plastic mesh sheet which allows for cutting out 6 mm armies ?
Thanks to Kenneth Van Pelt for all his info, advice, suggestions and photos. If you're not following his blog The Penny Whistle, I highly recommend it.
Monday, April 2, 2012
Returned to using a modified Van Pelt cut. I am using #10 plastic mesh used for Needlepoint. As my hair roller infantry is only 3mm high I opted to use the smallest mesh I could find. I choose to leave them as strips to make them quicker and easier to paint. Will cut them 5 deep on a 30mm deep base. Still not sure how many units on a base for the different cavalry types, as I prefer a more massed looked.
Sunday, April 1, 2012
My new fascination... Hair Roller Armies. They are made with the old knobby & pink rubber hair rollers. This is a setup of Early Hoplites, Athens versus Sparta mounted for DBA. The scale is interesting at 2 mm. Makes the battlefield scale look like a general would view it. One Day to figure out the technique and build and paint 2 armies. I am working on 3 Napoleonic Armies (British, French, and Russians) while learning how to make horses and artillery. Now all I need is to find more hair rollers. A quick way to assemble large armies for any set of rules.