Sunday, March 23, 2014

A little update + stripping some metal minis

I've been reading a lot of other people's blogs the past few weeks, most notably Orlygg's . Such a great source of old-school information, pictures and tutorials. Check it out if you like old warhammer stuff, and any of the links in my sidebar. Loads of great stuff. ->>>>>>>

When I'm not reading blogs, scouring ebay or killing myself slowly at the gym, I've been working to get my Blood Bowl teams ready for league time. Unfortunately things are going much slower than I'd like, but they are going! I just hope the last few players I need for the team arrive in time to at least get a basecoat done.

They're all over the place!
I managed to get some more work done on the human team, though they're not one of the ones that'll be used in the league so they've been put on an indefinite hold for now. At least they're painted to a playable level! Just gotta get them based. I'll probably follow Orlygg's basing tutorial here when I get to it.

 The following pictures are... a mess. Whoever previously owned the great throng of dwarfs I came into possession of not only had quite a bit of money to spend on these figures, but also on glue! Over half of the figures that I found in their original condition were COVERED in glue. The ones in this picture aren't even as bad as some. I've found ones that are head to toe on one side of their body in a thick hard sickly yellow resin. All of the vehicles and siege weapons had to come apart and many dwarfs had to be ripped from their bases (All managed it safely except for one imperial dwarf who's tab broke off.) I should've taken some pictures back then. Some of them were indeed horrifying to behold. Here are some of the remnants who's bases were too difficult to remove at the time. There's still a few more with globs of glue on their faces and arms, but these were ones I'd set aside to be stripped a while ago. I figured I'd get those done and clean my Blood Bowl team players while I was at it.

The guy with the broken base had so much glue between his legs I couldn't even get him out of the base without potentially damaging him.

Check out that guy's arm. He's like some sort of mutation.

The whole group ready to be stripped.


All right, so this stuff... is pretty nasty. It's strong as hell, and probably overkill for any simple stripping job, but it's the only thing I've tried that can remove 20+ year old hard-as-rock glue. I can't say I recommend it to anyone unless you have this problem as this stuff is highly toxic, (read the label), must be used in a very well ventilated area and burns like crazy if it gets on your hand for more than 15 seconds. You also shouldn't pour it down the drain as it can damage the piping. So yea, lovely stuff. Anyway, it does the job very well and works like nothing else I've tried for stripping metal minis of pretty much everything that isn't metal. Just NEVER use it on plastic. They will melt and turn into a gooey liquid.

So here was the first group to be put in. I eventually added in the rest and covered them with Jasco and let it sit overnight. In the morning all the nasty glue was off and the black base had melted into a puddle, but the dwarf who was trapped within was now free. I took the minis out, shook them off a bit in the bowl to get most of the goop off, put them in a glass pyrex bowl and let them sit under a stream of warm water for a bit, turned the fan on and left the room and closed the door while that was going on. (The small amounts of jasco in the water made some pretty strong fumes and I didn't want to be around them.)

After 15 minutes or so I took each one out, scrubbed them with an old tooth brush on a towel and any bits of old paint still on them came off pretty easily. There were no more traces of glue and the minis were quite shiny and looked almost new. The first time I tried this I was worried a little about loss of detail, but in all the times I've done it, the models haven't been harmed in any way. They've always come out looking shiny, new, and ready for priming.

I took them out later on once they were dry and sprayed them in a box in the yard. I should've taken some pictures of how they looked when they came out, but I didn't. perhaps next time I'll remember to do so.

One last thing, I've been trying to think of a way to get started on painting my old dwarf army. I've been reading around on "how to start oldhammer" and one idea that seemed to make sense was from Orlygg's blog again. Starting out with 12 or so guys and building around them. My friend Joe, who has a blog on my blog roll under the name Jabberw0cky, has been collecting skaven models since he was little but has painted very few of them. He seemed pretty interested in trying 3rd edition fantasy battle so we're going to start by making a unit of 10-20 guys and start off with a small one on one skirmish using the basic rules from the WFB3 book pretty soon.

I chose 13 of my favorite dwarf models (because every band of dwarf adventurers must have 13.) from my drawer of dwarfs, dwarf drawer, if you will, and here they are:

The leader in the center with his hood and pipe, the map reader to his side, the dwarf holding up a lantern to guide the way, a grappling hook to get the group over ledges and walls, the thuggish brute with a club to beat down any troublesome rats, the brave one with a hammer high ready to strike, several who are simply ready to fight, and one to pass blame onto the nearest friend (see picture below, rank 2, file 2,) , the tall look-out man (who might just be insecure), the engineer who always bring tea and the ever-popular cook.

 Most of them are 1985 adventurers (many of which you can find in the Citadel 1989 Autumn catalogue ). Two of them, however, the dwarf on stilts and the map reader, are recasts by GW that I believe are still sold today. These are some of my favorite old sculpts with so much personality.

A great bunch of dwarfs I think, and they should be fun to paint!
I'm looking forward to painting these guys and I think I chose a group that shouldn't be boring to do. They're not a band of soldiers fighting a meaningless battle for some general or a block of cannon-fodder to be thrown against a horde of skinks for a few turns or a bunch of identical clones standing regimented and painted identically to fulfill a single purpose, but a group of mismatched individuals all with some sort of common goal I haven't thought up yet. There's gotta be a story behind such a party, though, and that's what I like about oldhammer, all the imagination and wonder.

What do you think when you see a group together like this? Can you imagine all the bickering and fighting that goes on between them? The nights around the campire with the cook making a meal for everyone and the leader sitting on a log smoking his pipe, planning the next day's journey, the dwarf with the lantern leading the party through a dark damp forest, keeping an eye out for goblins or spiders, while the one with the map nervously tries to navigate in the dim light. These models just beg for a story to be written about them and I think they're the ideal place for me to start painting my dwarf army.

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