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Backwards to go Forwards

I’m afraid that my modelling and painting have been very much curtailed this week. I decided that it was time to tidy out the garage, or as it now is, my wargaming room and have a good tidy and cull of some of the ‘rubbish that I have been collecting. I think that ‘collecting’ or hoarding, to be more accurate, is a spliced on gene that most wargamers possess.

Tidying the workshop started with dusting down some of my own models.

Tidying the workshop started with dusting down some of my own models.

Fortunately, Julie, my wife, has been away for a break so I could get on with making a mess whilst sifting through some of my collection of models and spare bits. Quite why I have kept so much of it, I really cant explain. I guess you never know when you are going to need that off cut of Teddy Bear fur to do some thatching on a Dark age building and those bits of balsa are sure to come in useful one day. Some of the stuff is just weird – bits of electrical appliances, widgets from beer cans ( yes, seriously!), even deodorant bottles. I wonder what other modellers keep in their bits boxes, just in case…..

To be fair, I have been building models for some 54 years now! I’ve been through many phases, from radio control Airplanes, Boats and Yachts; Scale plastic models in all scales, Science fiction Modelling – yes, Star wars and Dr who, through to wargaming via 40K and now Historical. So, another clear out was due to make way for the next lot of useful bits that I might acquire! The biggest problem that I have is getting rid of models that I have completed. I just don’t like to sell them. As well as being a record of my hobby, they hold many happy memories. Occasionally, one gets broken beyond repair and ends up in the spares box, but by and large I have kept many of my models – here are just a few of them taken at random.

At-AT diorama

At-AT diorama

This At-At diorama was built some years ago when I was into my Star Wars phase. I think that the kit is an MPC one produced back in the ’80’s. I have a number of Star Wars dioramas that I have built – Unfortunately Jar Jar Binks cured my of my Star Wars obsession but the latest films have perhaps redeemed the franchise. Here’s a picture of me building the AT-AT with my son – as he is now in his 30’s, you can see that it was a while ago…

Building the AT-AT

Building the AT-AT – home made work board!

I also had a thing about Dr Who. There was a series of models made by a company called Sevans. The models were large scale and took some building as they used a variety of materials. The intention was to build a collection of characters, including the Tardis. I managed three models as below.

Cyberman, Dalek and Ice Warrior

Cyberman, Dalek and Ice Warrior

The Dalek was radio controlled and had LED lights in the ‘head’. Unfortunately, the motor interfered with the Radio control so after a few crashes I gave up on it! It did amuse the family though! I may yet get back to this collection. I have a model of Davros in the loft somewhere!

From Science Fiction modelling, it was an easy step to get drawn into wargaming with Games Workshop 40k figures. I was an early adopter of the new ‘Rogue Trader’ rules and figures. However, due to work commitments, I initially did very little gaming but spent much of my time painting and modelling. I do enjoy the process of scratch building, although at the time, a lack of both money and to be fair, availability of the models pushed me in this direction. The cabinet below contains my own scratch built Bane Blade and Variants – all made with recycled plastic card and based on plans in White Dwarf Magazine.

Taleth Heavies - just one part of my Imperial Guard Army!

Taleth Heavies – just one part of my Imperial Guard Army!

My last phase of 40K was the Necrons. A shame that I actually got tired of waiting for GW to update the Codex and release new models as I have a huge collection of Necrons – some 7000 ‘old points’ and at the time every variant that they had released. In fact, to introduce some variety into my army, I started to convert and build my own models.

Necron Destroyer variant with 'drone 'Scarab.

Necron Destroyer variant with ‘drone ‘Scarab.

I still have a soft spot for Necrons and might just add some of the later models to the collection if ever I am bored or fancy a change from painting my historical armies….

Brixham Trawler Valerian

Brixham Trawler Valerian

The model above was actually scratch built by my Dad. Its a working scale model ( in that it sails!) of a Brixham Trawler, The Valerian. It is of course very precious to me and a reminder that it was my Dad that got me into the hobby. It’s given me endless hours of pleasure and an escape from every day life and its ups and downs. I profoundly hope that your hobby does the same for you.

Thanks for reading a bit of a self indulgent blog this week. The Man Cave is just about finished so I should get back to painting this week. The aim is to get back to painting Napoleonics – I have a regiment of Lifeguards to finish!

British Life Guards

British Life Guards – more to come!