Saturday 28 October 2017

War Trolls - Olog-hai (Set 2)

The second set of Trolls from Dark Alliance and in Terms of use and ..unfortunately   Quality*,  a bit of a mixed set.
You get eight in the box, two lots of four poses and I´ve painted up only one...the reasons will become clear.
The catapult is from one of those "Bag-O-Kniggits". I´ve replaced the end of the throwing arm, added some cogs from a broken wind up toy and replaced the wheels. 

*Of the other three. poses? Well, it Looks as if the mold has "slipped" and slipped quite badly, 1-2mm´s.  I´m used to removing mold lines, IMHO, it´s part of the hobby but in this case, the amount of slippage meant they were way beyond saving.  C'est la vie.
Hopefully this was in only a few sets and I was unlucky as I really like the Alliance Fantasy Range.
I´ll chalk it up to bad luck on my part and hopefully I can get hold of a complete set later on.
But what were they up too?
It Looks like two are the ones who were opening the Black Gate in the LotR´s film "The two Towers" but they could equally be employed to push/pull siege weapons like a seige Tower.
The 4th pose Looks very much like his painted Counterpart and similar looking ones are seen loading catapults in the LotR´s film "Return of the King"
He could be saved with a lot of snipping but TBH, I haven´t the time

Wednesday 25 October 2017

Fire Demons - Balrogs (set 1)

Made by Dark Alliance.
These things are big, not quite as big as  the  Balrog  in the LotR´s film, The Fellowship of the Ring and although Tolkien was never specific about the size and appearance of the Moria Balrog it´s film depiction is frankly,  ridicously enormous.

Thier height.
From page 194 in "The Book of Lost Tales II"
"Then Glorfindel's left hand sought a dirk, and this he thrust up that it pierced the Balrog's belly nigh his own face (for that demon was double his stature)..."

Apparently Elves are supposed to be tall, and Glorfindel around  6'6" (or taller?) so doubling his height, this makes  the Balrog, at least  13' tall. 
The Alliance Fire demons are ca; 6cm´s tall. In 1/72nd, roughly 4.5 meters, roughly  15' foot 2 and 1/2 times bigger than a man but roughly 2x the height of an elf so the sculptor at Alliance has them just about right.
I´m not good at reproducing flame/fire effects especially on such large sculpts but I wanted to portray them as if they have fire /intense heat within them, hence the attempt at a  "Lava" effect on thier Skin. Did it work?
They are also described as having "steel like claws". Wether this means "actual steel" or "as hard as steel"  I´m not sure. I tried steel coloured claws but it looked odd so I went for more animalistic colours. Fits with the teeth colour as well.
A tiny bit of Flash but as they are semi hard plastic it´s easy to remove.
The Demons have two holes in thier backs, the wings two pegs but the holes needed Drilling out so the pegs would fit. Even then, the wings are quite heavy and due to the non-glueable type of plastic they  needed pinning so they would hold. 

Saturday 21 October 2017

Orc Catapults

Produced by Dark Alliance, they appear to be  Based on the ones shown in the  Hobbit film, Battle of the five armies.
I´ve stuck to the colour scheme I used for the Olag Hai,  animal characteristics - the pinkish Skin and troll ones , the Grey cracked Stone like Skin
Initially it´s not 100% clear that the catapult set and the troll set  are to be used as one, especially for those who haven´t seen the film. There is  no plan / diagram to show what the catapult "sledges" should look like when they are built but more on that later.

Anyway, These are made up from two sets.
Set one..the "War Trolls for Catapult"..2 of them (HERE) and set two...the catapult "sledges" plus two Crews of 4 orcs in the set "Orcs Catapult" (HERE)
Either of them are a bit odd if used  on thier own so you need to buy both sets.

Problems and  Solutions

1. The trolls don´t attach that well to their bases. The pegs just don´t hold even with glueing or welding with a heated screwdriver. Solution? I cut the pegs off and drilled holes in the feet, made Counter sinks on the bottom of the bases and using small Wood screws, screwed the bases to the trolls.
2. The "Sledges". With the lack of a diagram I had to fiddle about a bit and prefit the "sledges" to the trolls to see if I´d put them together correctly. 
The "sledges" have  tabs underneath and the trolls have corresponding  holes in thier backs. Problem ? It doesn´t fit or hold. Glue? Seeing as the plastic isn´t the glueable kit type..nope. Heat welding ?There´s too little space to do this. Solution? I cut the Tabs off and drilled holes in the trolls backs and through the "sledges" . Nails, slightly thicker than the holes were then stuck into the trolls backs.   To attach I just pressed the "sledges" onto the nails.
This solution turned out to be better in that  when the "sledge" is added to the Standing troll using the Tabs, the throwing arm tends to be too low so the sling with the rock hangs on the ground. By using a nail, the  angle of the nail can be altered which alters the angle of the "sledge",  raising the sling off the ground and giving a more or less horizontal platform for the Crew.

3. The "sledges". Seeing as they are made of non-glueable plastic,  the parts need heat welding together.
The wheels on the sides ? They have (unless you look at the link below) have no visible function so I´ve added spokes so they give the Impression of being used to draw the arm down.

As actual war machines they wouldn´t work. There´s no Tension skeins of any worth to add Torsion to the throwing arm, no gearage to pull the  arm down , no release System.  Ok, the orc could bend Forward quickly to lob the arm Forward (in the style of a fustibalus - Stave or staff sling) but that would mean the Crew would also fly off or be putting in Claims for work related whiplash injuries.
They could be made more "realistic" like THIS but it would mean a lot of  fiddly work but TBH, I like the look of them as they are.

Thursday 12 October 2017

More bits and Bods

A few bits that don´t Warrant a post all of thier own.*

Two new additions to the Bodstonia Landscape, a couple of Trappers/Militia. Bodies from the Imex Pilgrims, the heads from the Imex George Washington´s army
Some more North American Indians in a Canoe. Bodies and Canoe from the Imex Lewis and Clark set, heads from the Italeri Indian Warriors.
I´ve forgotton where the musket came from but I think it was a spare from the Imex Pilgrims set. 
A small  Veuglaire. I haven´t a clue what make it is but it´s A really nice Piece  and made entirely out of Metal.
The tent from the Emhar crested kniggits set. As it Comes, OOB, the Thing is massive. PSR puts it at around 5 meters tall. I sawed off 2 cm´s from the bottom so the doorway is the height of a bod.
*If it hadn´t been for a recent stay in Hospital, they might have had some other bits added to them but as I´m in "recovery" sitting down to paint etc is beyond me at the Moment :-(