Friday, September 30, 2011

Karcuss Zoo Tower!

This photo is a close up of my Berlin Zoo Flak Tower.

The photos are about ten years old, it was a work in progress then. I upgraded to double 128mm AA guns and I added doors and windows. This thing is massive. Those are 37mm guns in the swallows nests. Also look on the ground to the right. That's the Brandenburg Gate by Britannia Miniatures, long out of production.

Thursday, September 29, 2011


In WWII the Germans were very far advanced in many technical acheivements, one was the anti-aircraft missile, as here the Wasserfall, in HO scale my ArsenalM.

The rocket is much like a miniature V-2 missile in shape. I got mine from Randy, at Fidelis Models.

The kit is flash free, resin and photo etched metal. The resin is okay, but I don't like working with PE in general. It's great for looks but not quite durable enough for wargame handling.

This is the grill on the base, a little trolly to carry the missile and the stand that the missile sits on top of on the trolly.

This is the terrain base. It has a bottom bit that I intend to cut off and make it sit flat. It won't be as accurate but it will be more suitable for wargaming.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

New Wargame Rules

My friend and wargame buddy Dave Hall has published his wargaming rules! They are called “Blood and Guts, Rules, Tactics, and Scenarios for Wargaming World War Two, Heroes & Legends by David W. Hall. These rules are designed for 15mm and 1/72nd scale figures for the WWII era.

The rules have been in development for over a decade. It is lavishly illustrated and available for sale by Amazon. David Hall even mentions me on a couple places. Dave provided me with a free copy and I have just gotten it, so I have not had an opportunity to dive too deeply into it. Dave has already been out doing book signings, pretty exciting!

Many of us talk about publishing our wargame rules, but few of us ever do it. Dave has taken the big step. Just organizing all the data is a huge endeavor. Dave has also written in this set of rules the experience of his journey into wargaming. He is a good writer and I wish him every success; this book reminds me very much of the old Donald Featherstone wargame books. They are worth purchasing for the photos alone.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


The resin bits of the wood gas Tiger require careful sanding, particularly the canvas.

I cut the storage box off the back of the Tiger I turret. Tank gunnery training was often done in a bunker with a tank turret on top. I may eventually make one of those.

Hull starts off as the standard Roco Tiger I.

Most of the extra bits are glued in place.

Gas cylinders glued together before insertion into the rack.

Monday, September 26, 2011


This is one of the gas cylinder holders for the wood gas driven Tiger tank from Arsenal M.

The hull is apparently a Roco Minitank hull from their new Tiger.

This bit of resin forms the canvas cover. Teh training tank did not have a turret.

Various resin bits that formed part of the wood gas mechanism.

These PE parts become the two bins for these resin cylinders that store the gas. One of these is already put together and shown at the top. I got this kit from Fidelis Models, from my friend Randy.

Sunday, September 25, 2011


This is a German Tiger I tank used for driver training.

It is HO scale in resin, photo etched bits and resin, I got it from Fidelis Models, my friend Randy always gives me a good deal on kits.

Because driver training did not require combat use, the Germans used the wood gas system to power the tank. It was a system that used wood or coal to run the engine. It was low power fuel and hard on the engine.

This is the PE bits. I don't like PE. It looks great, but it is hard to use and is very fragile. Not what you usually want for wargame models.

I ran a photo of this box a long time ago in a plastic box full of Tiger tanks. In doing research for this kit I kept finding my own photo in the websearch. I guess I am already an expert.

Saturday, September 24, 2011


These are my projects from the last few weeks. A couple of the Styer armored cars and six 170/210 guns all in HO scale resin.

My next project is rather dull, a trailer.

It's a navigational beacon trailer so my night fighters can respond to attacks by bombers.

Another resin kit, very fragile, very expensive for what you get, but you really can't field night fighters without one.

The parts laid out before assembly.

Friday, September 23, 2011

170 & 210

The big yellow gun is my first 170. I completed it months ago as a test of the parts fit and instructions. Not a bad kit, but certainly not an easy model. I was not enthusiastic to build five more, the only difference between the 170 and the 210 is the length and girth of the barrel.

This is a 210mm. The models come in all gray resin or all yellow. This one is a combination of two different kits, but they are identical apart from color.

Here you can see the plastic tile I used for the side stands.

Working on another 170mm. The barrels are turned aluminum and are perfect. I built all five at the same time in an assembly line style. It's about 300 parts for five of them.

The prototype and the five others, 2 of the 210 and 4 of the 170. The 210 was used in batteries of 2 or 4, I figure late war they get two. The 170 was used in batteries of 4 or 6 and I figure the 4 gun battery for late war use. My Panzer III artillery towing tanks will tow the four 170s and I intend to use a couple Paul Heiser Models Panthers to tow the two 210's.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Matterhorn Guns

A while back I built the HO scale ArsenalM Matterhorn gun in resin.

They were in batteries of four or six. I went with a four gun battery because the kits are fragile and pricey.

I used Evergreen plastic tile to reinforce the side stands because the photo etched parts were rather bendy.

Here is one with the added plastic. The plastic is protruding from the edge is slipped under the side of the guns.

This is the metal piece. Just trim out the metal pieces. I tossed most of them, too fragile would not survive even in storage on my first on, they certainly would not last in a wargame. I kept the two side rails, an elevation wheel and some handle bit. I actually trashed the others to prevent me from using them in the future. I got mine from my friend Randy at Fidelis Models.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


Zvezda makes this 1/100 scale katyusha model.

It is mounted on a little truck.

They were also used on other vehicles, including the GMC truck.

This is the rocket launcher.

This is a mock up, but I plan to mount some on these Roco trucks and use them as HO. Even though they are small the rocket launchers look pretty good to me.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


This is one of those long term projects.

I have been working on it for at least ten years or more.

It is still taking a long time. It is a low priority project, so it often waits while other more important projects get completed.

Once it is done, I am sure it will be really cool.

As you can see from the pile of bits, it might be another ten years before I am done. But I will keep you updated.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Hobby Stuff Is Where You Find It

Months ago I was at Michaels Crafts and they had this birdhouse.

It cost $50, a lot of money

Years ago, I was at the dollar store and purchased three sets of Christmas ornaments in resin for a dollar per set, three dollars total.

Then the birdhouse was on sale for half off, only $25.

And suddenly for only $25, I owned a massive Orthodox church. This is only a mock up, but it will look essentially like this when I am done.