Monday, February 17, 2014

15mm Sci Fi Oldies but Goodies from the Lost Archives...

So I managed to wrangle some time away from my frankly insane workload and do a quick photo shoot with my iPad from Hell! The following are a mixed bag of oldies but goodies that were featured in my old Dot-Mac online blog and photo album (which Apple in their infinite corporate "wisdom" chose to eliminate in favor of their new, "improved" iCloud…), plus some previously unseen creations of mine for other factions in my growing collections of combat brigades for the far future of the imagination! So, without further ado, for your consideration, starting with my growing Japan Self Defense Force Special Naval Landing Force mechanized demibrigade:

So far I'm now up to three MBTs including a platoon commanders tank, an ATGM tank hunter, and a SP Flak AAA tank. Four anti grav APCs are awaiting their SNLF naval grey paint scheme:

The commander's cupolas are from Rebel Minis. A VERY handy piece of kit for conversions or kitbashing in equal measure, this cupola comes with a selection of weapons options and instantly transforms a container or diecast toy into a 15mm sci fi military vehicle. 

Finally, the SNLF has close aerospace support in the form of a strike boat, a very simple expedient of applying an appropriate paint job and decals from the spares box to a classic bit of sci fi hardware:

The figures are Shivan Sisterhood light infantry from Blue Moon/Old Glory. Clearly the SNLF are supporting "the locals" in a dispute, or employing some "outside talent" to supplement their synthetic infantry and robotic combat assets…

Next up are my Germanic-themed sci-fi Imperial Terran Marine support assets, all SP anti-grav weapons platforms to back up my classic Laserburn Imperial Marines infantry contingent. All are based upon old plastic makeup compacts, some odds and ends, and a new coat of paint. We begin with the heavy tank destroyers, the main guns being some quite impressive weapons made by Archive Miniatures many aeons ago that have languished in my parts box for circa 20 years until I finally found the perfect use for them:

Next up are the SP anti aircraft assets, a quad AAA platform and a heavy guided missile system (I later discovered that I had made two of the quad flak platforms, much to my joy, but only after I'd taken the photos):

Finally, there's a trio of SP RAM carriers, two triple medium RAM systems and a 20 cm heavy RAM carrier, just the thing to put the rocket-assisted smart bomb hammer down on those who dare to defy the will of Her Imperial Terran Majesty:

Next up, a very heavy mech I converted quick and easy from a toy I picked up at the local Tuesday Morning store last year in the clearance aisle:

The Shivan Sisterhood stand in again for scale (and one is prudently running to get out of the way while her squad mate defiantly tries to test her rifle against the towering mech's armored hide).

Next up, we have an Imperial Terran Navy assault boat I built up a few years ago from an empty shampoo bottle, some plastic Christmas ornaments, and a few odds and ends:

Next, an old Laserburn Imperial wheeled APC, a heavy brute of a casting of near solid metal I acquired back in the 1980s:

Next up are a pair of heavy anti grav assault transports, essentially heavily armed ship to shore assault vehicles meant to bring down fully equipped Imperial Marine heavy infantry squads into a hot LZ and in one piece, then support the troops after they debus with firepower that would impress a platoon of MBTs. I built these two beasties from empty travel sized shampoo bottles, and the usual handful of gew-gaws and odd bits from the parts boxes:

Along a similar vein is a lone grav APC I put together from a travel sized shampoo bottle (a really small one!). Poor lil' fellow still needs a base, so I'll have to address that problem the next time I can sit down at my workspace:

Continuing on my anti gravity binge, here's some assorted grav tanks, including the "Yorkie" light reconnaissance tank, two of the first super heavy grav tanks I ever made in response to the recent renaissance in 15mm science eviction figure lines and gaming, the very first 15mm grav tank I ever made - a model over 30 years old! - and some super heavy grav assault tanks inspired by the WW2 French Char B1bis heavy tank:

It's amazing what one can do with a plastic ink stamp container, some plastic rhinestones, and a bit of Krazy Glue… 

Shifting gears here for a moment, here are some of the earliest 15mm sci fi AFVs I ever created. I built this over 30 years ago for FGU's Space Marines combat rules to match the description of specific combat vehicles described in the rule book for the Azuriach Imperium. As the "Azzies" loved heavy tracked combat vehicles in keeping with their fascist human supremacist state mentality, I used a 1/76 scale Airfix Stalin III heavy tank as the perfect basis for a 15mm super heavy combat tank. The counter rotating cupola mounting twin AAA heavy tripod blasters was from a 1/76 scale Fujimi Panzer I kit, while the rest of the vehicle was a mix up of model parts from my spares box. The tank commander figure was an old 15mm figure from Ral Partha Miniatures, one of their classic 15mm sci fi line that alas, I otherwise no longer have any examples of in my collection (@#$@$@%!! WHAT WAS I THINKING?!!!!):

The second machine is a heavy flak vehicle mounting a heavy caliber autoblaster cannon. Still in storage are an ECM/battlefield jammer vehicle on the same chassis, plus some other odds and sods left over from my first forays into kit bashing from so long ago.

Back to my grav vehicle mania, here are three of my favorites to date, the anti grav tank hunters and their SP rocket-assisted howitzer-packin' cousin, all based upon some old 1970s vintage plastic model airplane display bases:

Finally, here's some of my old Starguard! Imperial Terran Marine assets from the 1980s repurposed to 15mm war walkers thanks to their scale neutral detailing. No school like the Old School, and thanks to my iPad's camera acting all wonky, the photos look like surveillance footage shot during an attack seconds before the camera were shot out:

Thanks again for lookin', and stay tuned for the next installment, which will be as promised my recommended reading lists for the lectures I just delivered at DunDraCon XXXVIII yesterday on the evolution of Japanese Arms, Armor, and Warfare 794-1600 and the Imjin War 1592-98! A fascinating and colorful period for the hobbyist and war gamer alike. Now if only someone would start producing a complete line of 16th century Ming Chinese to go with the excellent Japanese and Korean figures from the Perry Brothers...


  1. Amazing as always... Mostly I'm just impressed that you even get paint to stick to the arbitrary random soft plastics that many containers and whatnot are made of.

  2. The man who feeds his imagination wholesome foods (for thought) gets his creations drooled upon by others. I'm drooling. Thanks for the tour.

  3. Really incredible stuff.... very motivating. I think next time i'm at the store i'm going to look at all the travel size containers and see if I can build something myself. My wife is going to think i'm crazy(er)!