Custom Gaming Table

A group of local wargamers usually meets once a week in our area. For the handful in my town, the 45-minute-plus drive every week can be taxing, even if the group is good fun. So, a once or twice a month our local crew gets together for a game instead of driving out to participate in the larger group. We usually rotate from house to house, but one of our number just made an investment I think we are all interested in capitalizing on…

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Take a look at this beauty! Custom created by a local carpenter. Playing surface is 5’x7′ with drop-in wood slats. Our gaming guru plans to paint the wood green on one side and blue on the other, but until then he used a mat. A good 6-8″ bumper lines the playing area, complete with cup- and dice-holders. Drawers on each side are fully stocked with markers, rulers, and more. All this is in a beautiful polished wood that makes for a really attractive piece of furniture.

A few more pictures are below. The game depicted was out inaugural on the new board, an AWI scenario for Black Powder (Battle of Hobkirk’s Hill, April 1781) straight out of the recent WSS 78. I won’t say much about the game here except that it was a blast…and that my Marylanders melted at the first sign of trouble, taking the entire center of my line with them.

If you live in the Kansas City area and are interested in commissioning one of these pieces for your own gaming room, then send me a message and I can put you in touch with the carpenter.

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German Mechanized Reconnaissance (CoC) – Sd Kfz 250s and 250/9s

Well they took longer than I thought, but my recon halftracks are finally ready to take the field!

I followed Ruben Torregrosa and Mig Jimenez’s Painting Wargame Tanks again for inspiration, this time adding more weathering. Both models are Battlefront resin/metal in 15mm.

I started with a spray undercoat of Plastic Soldier Company’s dunkelgelb. Every elevated point on the model and most edges then received a thin highlight of Vallejo Buff.

Next I applied some light brown and green striping with my airbrush. This camouflage does not show up well in the pictures. It is subtle in person too, though a little more visible! I have not quite gotten the hang of airbrush paint application, but I think I made a breakthrough right at the end of this session. Unfortunately, I ran out of time to experiment further. I once saw someone write that airbrushing is a great way to squeeze five minutes of painting into 45 minutes of free time. I am still at that stage!

AA Pre WashThis picture shows the models after airbrushing but pre-wash. Next I painted the tracks (MiG “Dirty Tracks”), road wheels, wheels (Vallejo Black Grey), and various bits and bobs (tools, exhaust, water can crosses). Then I applied decals over a gloss coat followed by decal softener. Once these dried I applied a matt varnish.

For the pin wash, I used the MiG enamel “Brown Wash for German Dark Yellow,” which I think is absolutely fantastic. Very minimal cleanup was necessary afterward, all of which I knocked out with a q-tip and some enamel thinner. One vehicle received some vertically-applied weathering grime. Can you tell which one? I couldn’t really either…so I didn’t bother with the other two. I need to experiment with that technique further.

The final steps included paint-chipping using Vallejo “Buff” and “Cavalry Brown,” then application of a couple light shades of pigments and some fixer (Secret Weapon products). A final matt varnish and placement of the 250’s machine-gunner completed the project.

I am really happy with how these turned out, and I have very excited about getting them on the table. I have played Chain of Command by Too Fat Lardies for the past year or so. One of my favorite parts is the encouragement to use the sorts of vehicles and equipment often over-looked in points-based games where the biggest, baddest equipment tends to rule the day. In CoC, even a meager 250/9 can be a major threat to an infantry platoon.

My goal is to shift away from my never-ending Normandy projects now to focus on some other periods. Hopefully the change will be refreshing…we’ll see if I can stick to it.

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