Welcome to my blog, the story of my continuing journey into the World of Zombie Wargames.

Monday 26 August 2013

Construction Site Hut

The work on my construction site continues (slowly); the basic structure has been completed  but each stage seems to take an eternity for the glue and paint to dry. It does however give me ample time to make a lot of bits and pieces to fill the site with.
First if the many additional bits that I've made is this site hut, which I showed the initial stage of last week and  is now complete. The structure is fairly flimsy, being made from some very cheap scrap packing card  and matchsticks.
The use of matchsticks (they're actually bought
craft ones) determined the front height of the  building at just over 40mm.
The footprint of the building is about 2" x 3" (50mm x 75mm) which gives enough room inside to fit two figures comfortably even with the internal detail I wanted for this.
The windows frames are made from the same card, as is the roof (which overlaps the front of the building by about 1cm).
Even with matchsticks as support for the roof, it still managed to warp a little.
The rear door of the building does in fact open, though why I'm continuing to make more work making openable doors still eludes me, as I see them having little bearing on gameplay.
Again matches have been used as vertical support struts more for decoration than any true support worth.
Originally I had painted this building in blue, but realised I already had another fairly similar building in this colour and so It was repainted in  green (much darker than the photographs show).
The original blue paint can be just made out on the photos.
Another photograph showing the final side for completeness, note the roof  out of place !

The roof removed showing some of the internal detailing.
I made the internal detail concurrently with the hut and fitted it after the hut was assembled, so it was a complete stand-alone piece in its own right.
The two chairs I have been messing about with for a few weeks and they're not actually glued in place  yet, as I haven't determined whether or not I'll do so.The "blue prints" and the crap of card that resembles a clip-board are the only extras that I made specifically for this.
Another shot of the internals, showing the slope of the front desk slightly better (the side one is flat.
The rear wall has no detail on it at present and could really do with a chart or a H&S poster or some such as currently it's fairly bland.
The rear wall does have a coffee stirrer edge to the top for extra strength and as an attempt to stop warping.
All the windows have perspex panes to represent glass.
The model overall took a week to complete, but I doubt if I even managed an hour a day on it, as I was making many other bits as the same time.
 Finally, here's the initial stages in the two chairs you can see inside  the hut.
They may not be the most detailed in the world (Mathyoo), but I'm  quite pleased with my efforts.
You can just make out that one of the chiars has a very thin back and seat (card) whilst the other has a thick, cushion-like back and seat, made from plastic.
 They were very fiddly to make, but at least I now have an idea of making some passable furniture. I'm also going to try and make a park-bench, using the same technique.

In other news, in case you haven't checked his blog lately,  Brian/Vampifan is now out hospital and in a respite home.

And that's it for this week, as always your comments are both welcomed and appreciated. 

Monday 19 August 2013

DVDs/Films page update

I haven't managed anything much of anything in the last week or so, so I've decided to update my DVD/Film section. I've added the following films in a more concise form on that page but here are some more detailed reviews than I'd normally give.

Zombie King aka Zombie Beach Party - (2003) An “Outlandish gore-filled zombie smackdown! ” was the accompanying narrative for this, unfortunately it was none of those. The story-line being vague at best but it was basically  a tale of Mexican masked wrestlers with some zombie moments thrown in. Score: 1/5 

Zombie Diaries - (2006). “In the early part of the 21st Century, an unknown virus began spreading among the populace. Within weeks it had engulfed the entire planet...”, so read the pre-amble. The story follow a camera crew’s attempt to document the outbreak, which could have been an interesting variation on the zombie theme but unfortunately turned out as a stale and boring trek through many clich├ęd scenes. A poor British effort overall even though it did have its moments (few and far between. Score: 2/5

Zombie Diaries 2 - (2011) aka "World of the Dead: The Zombie Diaries". This film follows on from Zombie Diaries but is set three months later after the events of the first film. It still has the feel of a pseudo-documentary from the various characters POVs and is a far better effort than the first in this respect. This time though action centres around a squad of soldiers who meet with some of the survivors from the first film. All told it’s a much better film than the first, but not one I’ll be rushing to view again. Score: 3/5

Autumn - (2009) A film with David Carradine in can’t be that bad - right ? Wrong! This is truly a dreadful film even by poor zombie film standards. There is little if anything to recommend it. I was very disappointed with this film as the book has a lot to recommend it even though not amongst the better zombie novels out there. Score: 1/5

Eaters - (2011) An Italian film with subtitles, but none the worse for that.Whilst it won’t win any prizes it is nevertheless a fairly enjoyable romp (but possibly for all the wrong reasons). It is difficult to know whether its self-contained story is meant to be tongue in cheek or not. The two main characters are believable enough whilst the rest are great stereotypes. The story is easily followable, but I got the feeling that the apocalypse took place in a very small area of Ital, rather than being a pandemic Score: 3/5  

Remains - (2011) The premise for this film is the usual “WTF everyone has turned into zombies !”, except of course the gallant band of survivors (who are holed up in a casino in Reno). The earlier portions of the film are much better than the latter parts where the storyline is stretched and the cast is thinned out or replaced. It had all the makings of a really good zombie film but that tailed off disappointingly quickly. Some good effects and some quite amusing bits though and whilst not on must see list, it is a cut of the rest of the “B” zombie films. Score: 4/5 for the first half and 3/5 for the second !

Zombie Flesh Eaters - (1979) The film started well enough, in New York harbour with a police launch investigating a drifting abandoned yacht. My alarm bells started ringing when I realised the cops were sporting an Italian flag from the launch. It also took a while before I realised that the film was dubbed. After the initial signs that this could go either way, it went the way most zombie films went – downhill fast. The mix of zombies (infected and long dead corpses rising from their graves) . Unfortunately I found that there was little if anything to recommend it. Score: 1/5

I've also managed a backlog of 4 films to add to my "On the Shelf" list, namely: "Undead or Alive" (2007); "Dance of the Dead" (2008); "Kill Zombie" (2012) and "Carriers" (2009), though the last is not a zombie film it does look the best of the bunch.
On a personal note, my after eye-op problems are slowly clearing (insert you own joke here about seeing the light at the end of the tunnel) which has unfortunately restricted me mainly to computer based activities and left me unable to visit Bryan/Vampifan these last two weeks, which I'm hoping to remedy soon (there is a recent update on his blog from his brother though.) I have still managed to make some progress on my construction site, little though it is. The photo shows the initial stages of a hut/site office that will appear on the model and some half-finished I-beam girders. The hut is obviously made from card, matchsticks and bits of coffee stirrer (of course), whilst the girders are plastic.

That's it for this week it just remains for me to welcome my two latest followers "Warlord Paul" and "Sean" - "Welcome Guys".
I should also mention that a lot of my followers have their own blogs which are well worth a look, that can be found on their profiles as well as on my own list of blogs that I follow. I also keep finding blogs that I thought I was already a follower of, but have realised that I probably linked to them from Bryan/Vampifan's Blog ! - No wonder I thought they hadn't updated in a while. My own favourite links is well out of date too with blogs that have come and gone, just another task to do.

As always your comments are both welcomed and appreciated.

Monday 12 August 2013

Mean Streets

As I've not accomplished much in the last week, here's something I made earlier (as they say)
Nothing new I'm afraid as I made two very similar models way back at the beginning of March ("Flats"). The two buildings I made then were two single buildings basically butted onto one another to make a larger terrace.
In this instance I've put three frontages together to make a single model.
There is no internal detail to these models as they've been made to bulk out a city. They also suffer from being very small; with only a 4.5" frontage it would be very difficult to get sufficient internal detail inside and still have enough room for figures.
The second photograph shows a second triple frontage terrace alongside the first.
As with the first pair of double frontage buildings these were fairly tedious to make. The building weren't designed to be made with  5mm foamboard, as these are and it does make it more difficult to make these (especially the roof parapets).
As with the first two models I've dispensed with the card stair and scratch-built my own from foamboard exactly like the originals.
Along with the Triple fronted buildings I've also made two single fronted buildings along with another pair of double fronted buildings.
So I've now got two single fronted buildings, four double fronted buildings and two triple fronted buildings, which is the equivalent of 16 individual buildings. In the photographs the buildings are shown sitting on two of my terrain boards (each 2 foot x 2 foot square), which means I'll now be able to fill a 6 foot by 4 foot table with comparative ease.
Whilst these buildings all look fairly identical there are minor differences in each of them, namely in the colours of their doors. Whlst the body of each building follows the same pattern of build, each of their roofs have all been individually bodged to fit. I have already made some inroads into getting roof exits for each building, which I'll be making happen asap.
I would have shown all the models together on a single set-up had it not been for the fact that most of my table is cluttered with things from my current project.
This photo shows what I have managed to achieve in the last week despite the after op effects of my eye surgery (soon to be resolved  - hopefully !)
It's the start of what will be a construction site.
The base is about 16 inches square which, as can  be seen fits nicely into one of my terrain boards.
Whilst the base is plastic, the perimeter fence is
lolly pop sticks, which I've used before in other projects. I've cut each stick in half to make two "planks" each about 40mm high. They've been glued to the edge of the base and to one another's edges. You can see from the photographs that this is not an exact fit by any means. As the sticks were difficult to hold in place whilst the glue dried (PVA) I was only gluing about a third of a side at a time. Barely noticeable on the photos is the supporting internal beam at the base of the fencing (coffee stirrers), and the beam about 30mm up the fence. As for detail, I've made provision for two public viewing windows the one shown has had a matchstick frame added to the external (public) side, I may well add an internal mesh to it as an extra feature.
The main gate to the site I've made from two pieces of sprue, one from the fence sprue I got with the farmhouse (the brown one) and the other from some EM4 plastics minis, whilst the mesh came from my Wilkinsons Bird feeder
The gate will be openable using hinge posts (the silver sprue).

And that's it for this week

It remains for me to welcome my latest follower "Kasper" and to wonder which of my erstwhile followers has departed and why.

As always your comments are both welcomed and appreciated.

Monday 5 August 2013

Eyes ? Right !

So today I'm  doing a very poor impression of Zabadak the Grey pirate scourge of the seven seas.

Okay, I know it's also a pathetic title for this week's blog.
Today I was treated to eye surgery (again) in our local Infirmary which to all intents and purposes went well as far as I can see (which isn't very far currently).
I have to wait until mid September for my follow appointment and then probably another fortnight before I get new Spectacles, from then on I shall be trying to tackle my back-log of figure painting (not that anyone would notice the difference I reckon)

 I recently went on a spending spree to my favourite shop (Poundland )and along with all the tubes of UHU glue that I normally buy I made two purchases that may be of interest.
The first, shown on the left, was actually purchased from Wilkinsons for the princely sum of £1.50, I;ve already taken it apart as it was bought solely for the wire mesh.
The mesh is currently under investigation as a source for making furniture from (chairs initially), an idea passed on to me by one of my followers via a You-tube link)
The second purchase (which was from Poundland) is shown here on the right.
As can be seen, it's a roll of mesh, though in this time it's plastic.
The intention is to use it for fencing, even though the "holes" in the mesh are a bit on the large side at about a centimetre square.
The roll is 5metres long though and 16cm wide wish is a heck of a lot of mesh for a pound !
It has an advantage from my perspective in that the mesh is diagonal to the length - I've always been a bit on the skeptic side of square mesh for fencing. I bought a sheet of mesh a while ago and cut it to size but it's been a nightmare trying to get it to glue to anything, hopefully I'll have more success this time round with this stuff.
I've also managed to just about finish off the buildings that I hinted at two weeks ago and they'll probably end up being the subject of next week's blog.

Finally let me give you an update on my friend (and probably most of your's) Bryan/Vampifan who you will undoubtedly know by now is currently hospitalised (I blame his wanton life-style).
Suffice to say here that's he's doing fine and I've managed to visit him twice in the last week. On my second visit he looked a lot better than he had the previous visit and is making good recovery.
I have of course passed on all the many messages he received on his last blog.
For a further, fuller account of my visits to Bryan I've posted on The Board of the Living Lead in the News Section; the link for that site can be found on the right of this page.

That's it for this week, as always your comments are both welcomed and appreciated.