The Eureka tachanka itself (the wagon, that is) comes together fairly easily with a bit of patience and some test fitting. The main body is a single piece, which I had to bend very slightly to straighten as the back end had been pushed very slightly downward during shipping. The rear springs and axle are three simple pieces; the front piece has the bar the horses are harnessed to, then two springs, then a front axle.
I glued the whole thing together in one shot, wheels and all, and now that I’m painting it I find myself wishing I’d left the wheels off to make the undercarriage slightly easier to paint. On the other hand, getting the fenders on either side into place and symmetrical is easier when you have the wheels already solidly in place for reference, so it’s one of those “on the one hand/other hand” sorts of things. I can always slop mud around on the underside to hide any minor painting glitches, after all…
The base the whole thing will sit on is a strip of .040″ styrene plastic card, reinforced with Milliput epoxy putty, especially around the horses’ integral bases. I also ran a ridge of putty down the centre of the card base to stiffen it, with some slivers of scrap card under that just to give the putty something to hang on to. The base is just barely big enough to hold the wheels of the tachanka and the horses, but similar minimal “shadow” bases have worked to protect the relatively delicate wheels of other pewter/resin vehicles in my collection for several years now.
The tachanka is getting a dark green basecoat, similar to the paint scheme on the earlier armoured car. I’ve gone with blue trim, either a remnant of civilian finery (a lot of tachankas were lightly converted civilian carriages) or a bit of regimental pride coming through. I’ll leave all three crew in generic Russian khaki so they can be used by either side in my RCW games; I might eventually rig a flag holder somewhere on the thing for it to show off which side it’s fighting for today!
I’m trying to get the tachanka ready for Trumpeter Salute in Vancouver which starts this Friday, so time is pressing and I’m speedpainting like crazy, and feeling rusty because I really haven’t painted much at all in the last eight months or so! At some point I also need to come up with some basic rules for running the silly thing in Chain of Command, but that might be left for the ferry ride over to Vancouver Friday afternoon…
Quick late night workbench photo of my Impact Miniatures Sarcos crocodile team for Blood Bowl. They’re 99% done, with only the hook-hands of two and a few other details to finish off.
I’m quite pleased with how these figures have come together, they’re really nice sculpts and well cast, and it’s been great to get back into painting — these are the first figures I’ve actually gotten paint on since May of this year!
I’m out of town for a while visiting family so it’ll be sometime around Christmas before I can get decent daylight photos of these guys, but I want to get photos of them as soon as I can.
Back to the Russian Civil War again this LPL round with some Copplestone 28mm Bolsheviks. I really like the whole Copplestone Back of Beyond range, even the “rank and file” infantry have loads of character and lots of really nice details.
The tan background and khaki on the Bolshies gives this photo quite a nice sepia tone overall; that wasn’t really planned but looks good!
Round Seven of the LPL is up, and here’s my entry. These guys are 28mm U.S. Navy gunboat sailors from Pulp Figures. I used the famous movie The Sand Pebbles as my source for the uniform colours, as I’m pretty sure Bob Murch did when he sculpted these figures.
The all-white uniform is striking, but hard to do and keep interesting. I used a couple of shades of Reaper Master Series paint – they have a very nice triad of off-whites – and these sailors have come up very nicely.
Over to fantasy figures for the first time in this LPL for me, with a team of Reaper dwarves. Lovely figures loaded with detail, as you’d expect from Reaper. These short fellows are a lot of fun to paint, although picking out all the buckles, belt bags and bits can seem like an endless process.
I’ve painted these warriors up in almost all black livery, although the main colour on them is their extravagant dwarven beards and long hair. Apparently this particular clan of dwarves runs strongly toward red hair.
Round Five of LPL7 was one of three Theme Rounds; this time the theme was “Historical Civil Wars”. This fits perfectly into my ongoing Russian Civil War project, and was one of the reasons I pushed myself to participate in this year’s LPL.
I pulled out some RCW figures that I’d finished very quickly and roughly, stripped them, and repainted them to a much, much higher standard. The main scene depicts a group of raiding Cossack cavalrymen coming around the corner of a village church to find the locals armed and waiting for them, with a big farm wagon pushed across the road as a barricade.
The local militia are Copplestone Castings Russian Partisan figures; they’re great figures loaded with character. I own twenty or thirty of these guys (at least two packs worth, maybe three, I’ve lost track!) and I have very few duplicate figures in that collection. I pulled out seven favourite poses to repaint for this scene. I painted them up as a mix of young men & old. The young men would likely be returned frontovik (Russian veterans of the Great War) or, if this is a Bolshevik militia, young radical Bolshies come out from the cities. There were rural militias for every political flavour of the Russian Civil War, and quite a lot of no distinct flavour at all — the “Greens”, who were either peasant militias formed for self-defence or anti-revolutionary bandits, depending on who was telling the story!
The Cossacks are from Brigade Games. Brigade’s Russian Civil War/WW1 in the East range doesn’t get as much attention as the Copplestone Back of Beyond ranges, but there are some lovely figures in that range, including these fairly recent Cossack cavalrymen. There’s a pack of regular riders with swords and slung rifles, and a command pack with officer, trumpeter and standard bearer; all six of these guys are from the regular Cossack pack. They’re very nice figures, a bit more fine-boned than the Copplestone figures but very compatible. The one downside to these Cossack figures is that some of the details are quite delicate, especially the sabres and scabbards.
By the time you read this my Round Six figures will be competing in the LPL; head over to the Lead Adventure Forum to see how they’re doing!
Much activity on my workbench this week, with a frankly intimidating number of figures under the paintbrush, along with some other stuff like a set of the luggage I got a while back.
However, given that I’ve committed to the Lead Painter’s League 7 contest for the next eight weeks or so, you’ll have to forgive the line of paint jars obscuring most of the really interesting stuff on the bench! The dragon, cave men and captive have been lurking in the back of my bench for ages, so I moved them to the front to show them off a bit! The dragon is from Reaper and probably mostly done, unless I decide it’s entirely too blue and head back to the drawing board. The cave dudes are Copplestone; their captive is from Pulp Figures. The figures in behind are from… mostly Pulp Figures, actually. You’ll have to follow my progress in the LPL over on LAF to see them sooner than here!
So Round One of Lead Adventure Forum’s Lead Painters League 7 (LPL7) painting contest has wrapped up. The (non-mandatory) bonus theme for this opening round was “Headquarters”, so I touched up some of my Russian Civil War White Russian figures from Brigade Games.
By the time this is posted the Whites will have won their round against a rather nice Second World War company HQ of French goumiers – North African colonial troops – and Round Two will have opened. You can check out the whole contest over on LAF. LPL7 is ten rounds long, so ten weeks. I’ve got Rounds One, Two & Three done and entered, but things are going to continue to be fairly quiet around here as I’m neck-deep in painting up Rounds Four through Ten!
The centrepiece is, of course, the sandbag-and-rail tie flatcar that will be one of the centrepieces of my Russian Civil War game. I got the sandbags to a satisfactory paint job, and if I have some extra time before Friday I’ll do one last round of drybrushing and weathering on the whole car. I can’t really call it an “armoured” train car, so I’ve been referring to it as the “sandbag car” or a “protected railcar”. Anyway, it looks good, especially with some red Bolshie flags hanging off it to proclaim it’s current owners to the world.
The US Navy gunboat sailors crowded around the back of the railcar are part of my “Well, I’m painting, might as well paint something else” drive. They’ve sat on my painting bench for a terribly long time — you can see them in the blurry background of quite a number of previous workbench photos on this blog… a bit of extra paint moves them slightly closer to being done, at least!
The six extra Russian cavalry (Brigade Games Cossack figures, to be precise) are also coming along nicely. That’s the Cossack horses in amongst the sailors there.
Three days until Trumpeter! (although I only really have Wednesday evening to myself, with other commitments Thursday then off to Vancouver Friday… yikes…)