Friday, March 27, 2015

The Monsters mentioned in The Boats of the Glen-Carrig

I believe that the Boats of the Glen-Carrig would make a great plot for some type of game. There times of high adventure and horror. The monsters and aberrations mentioned there were encountered during three unique phases of the crew’s travels.

Land of Lonesomeness

In the Land of Lonesomeness there are the wailing trees and an unidentified monster that is said to shuffle along and be red like the color of beef. The trees seem to have the ability to reach out and grab and entangle their victims. The red creature seems to be about the height of a tall human, in that it was able to suck at an open port in the ship. The wailing trees seemed to contain the souls of men.

Silent Seas

One of the distinguishing features of these seas was the abundance of reeds that were big enough to entrap ships by their running aground on them. “Three separate times we saw hulks of rotting vessels, some of them having the appearance of a previous age, so ancient they seem.” The author refers to this region as the reed continent. The reed continent was home to a number or creatures including giant crabs, the Kraken, and the devil fish. All three of these creatures gave the crew of boat a start at one time or another.

The Island in the Weed

Having passed through the silent seas with their horrors and privations and having spied another island up at head the crew rowed to it. It was on this island that the crew of the boat encountered what was first described as reed men. Not that they looked like a reed, but they had come out of the reed by the hundreds. These creatures moved like monstrous slugs. They were in deed squid men and had many tentacles. They were described as such for they had “great eyes, so big as crown pieces, the bill like to an inverted parrot’s, and moved like a slug-like with undulating white and slimy body”.

The crew fought frantically through the night and it wasn’t until the morning that they realized that one of their number was missing. The story goes on, and the crew of Glen-Carrig were able to help the crew of an English ship grounded on the reeds to free itself and sail for home.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Round House Victoria Square Themed 3 in 1 Kits

When Round House Products was producing their line of 3 in 1 kits they produced several “themed” kits, one of which was named Victoria Square. The Victoria Square theme included three of their 3 in 1 kits, kits #1511, 1512, and 1513.

Victoria Square was supposed to represent a “mythical place in American history”. These kits were appropriate on layouts depicting America from 1900 on-wards.

Kit #1511 Restaurant and Station

Kit #1511 contained two car kits, a modern steel 40’ boxcar, and steal sheathed, 2-window caboose. The kit also included polystyrene roof, brick wall sections, and windows and door castings for the restaurant.

Kit #1512 Cable Car and Power House

Kit #1512 utilizes a 34’ Overton Passenger car and polystyrene roof, brick wall sections, and windows and door castings. I do have an instruction sheet for this kit which I will be summarizing in an upcoming post.

Kit #1513 Cable Car Barn and Repair Shop

Kit #1513 includes polystyrene roof, wall, and window and door castings. This kit as the others also included detailed instructions on how to best make use of the supplied parts.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

The Battle of Manila Bay Battle Report

The battle of Manila Bay was a battle fought between Spanish and American naval forces during the Spanish and American War. The goal of the American fleet was to destroy the Spanish pacific Fleet so that it could pose no threat to the US west coast. The game is played for fifteen rounds. The goal of the Spanish fleet is too survive the fifteen rounds without being totally destroyed.

It seems that the defensive and offence values of the American forces are superior to those of the Spanish fleet. After our fifth round, the Spanish fleet have been severally damaged the player controlling of the Spanish fleet capitulated.

Although I found the game interesting, the small counters and the stacking of damage counters made the game a bit bothersome to play.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Queued Print and Play Games

Here a few more games I have downloaded but have yet to “cut out” and play.

The Battle of Dorking, fictional alternative Victorian battle between the British and Imperial Germans. This is a two person.

Battle of Malaya,a WWII battle between the Imperial Japanese and British Commonwealth forces. This is a two person game.

Untermehmung, is a two person game depicting the German invasion of Yugoslavia.

Battle of Honey Springs, a one or two person game that depicts a Civil War battle between Union and Confederate forces taking place in Kansas.

"Paraguay is a board game for 2-4 players created by Julio Trois, whose theme is the War of Paraguay. For 10 rounds, the armies of Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay must defend their cities and destroy all the defenses of Paraguay.”

Marignano, is board game for one to three people depicting a battle which took place in Italy between the French and Swiss in 1515.

Espinosa, is a two or three player game depicting the battle of Espinosa de los Monteros in 1808. Espinosa  is one of Napoleonic Brigade Series published by Multi-Man Publishing.

Monday, March 23, 2015

10 Planned Scratch Built HO Gauge Model Structures

Recently, while rummaging through the files of an old USB drive, I found this list of ten HO gauge structures I had planned to build from scratch. Although, I have no intention of building anything from this list at this time I thought it peculiar finding the list. I thought I would share it with you.

These structures could be built with the materials I have on hand. Perhaps, someday when my interests are drawn back to model railroading, I will build a few of these structures.

1. Stone Spring House
Cardboard sub-walls and roof, stone embossed sheet, plank door from the scrap box with shingled roof.
2. Tarpaper Shack
Cardboard sub-walls and roof, construction paper walls
3. Outhouse on Cement Slab
Board and Batten wood scraps on match stick foundation
4. Storage Tanks and Pump House on Cement Slab
Storage tanks: tape spools glued onto a polystyrene sheet
Pump House: Cardboard sub-walls and roof with brick embossed walls
Cement slab: Cardboard
5. Shingled Potting Shed on Cement Posts
Cardboard sub-walls and roof, construction paper shingles, on strip wood posts
6. Board and Batten Utility Building on Cement Slab
Board and batten plastic sheet, door and three windows from resource box
7. Chicken Coop on Stone Foundation
Scribed sheet, door built-up from Strathmore board, windows from resource box
8. Stone Smoke House
Cardboard sub walls, stone embossed sheet, plank door from the scrap box with shingled roof.
9. Clapboard Utility Building
Polystyrene Clapboard sheet, plastic door and windows (3) from resource box
10. Random Plank Board Barn
Polystyrene sheet, plastic windows, polystyrene “metal” roofing.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Scratch Building and Kit-bash Resource Bins

Over the years I have accumulated a hoard of left-over bits of polystyrene and wood sheet and strips; metal tubing and wire, and left over bits from plastic and metal kits. These bits all ended up in one large box, but has my collection grew, it became more difficult to pick something useful out of this big confused mess. So I have separated my bits into separate containers and have made the possibility of finding a strip, sheet, or leftover piece from a plastic kit easier. Someday, when I get around to building a new workbench I would like a small draw for each material.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Two Solo Games Resources

I find solo games quite intriguing and have featured a few of these games in my posts. I would prefer playing a game with others, but that isn’t always possible, so I am always on the look-out for fun games that can be played solo. Recently I found these two resources that I would like to share with those like-minded individuals who by preference or out of necessity play solo games.

1 Player Guild

The 1 Player Guild is actually a directory of directories of solo games. You will find many recommendations for solo played games on this page.

My Solo Experience - The First Year of Games

My Solo Experience - The First Year of Games is an interesting succession of twenty-five games the author played over the course of a year. Many of the games were played more than once. The author reviews the game and mentions whether he thought the game was a fun solo play

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Old Round House 3 in 1 Kits

These old Round House 3 in 1 kits were a great resource to the HO model railroader. When these kits were available I purchased several of these kits. The kits included parts from several of Round House kits, extra parts, and an instruction sheet on how to build the basic kit. Also within the notes were ideas on how to take the supplied parts and kit-bash them into something out of the ordinary. Ordinarily, scratch building supplies, like styrene or wood sheet were required. In addition, the kit required the purchase of parts from other manufacturers.

1500 Channel Frame Log/Lumber Car Set
1501 Wood Chip Car Kit Set
1502 Shorty Flat Car Project Kit
1503 Maintenance of Way Workers Kit
1504 Yard Office/ Wayside Station
1505 Section Gang House/Gandy Dancers' Quarters
1506 Telegraph Office/Service Facility
1507 Maintenance of Way Fire Fighting Train
1508 Ore Jimmy Car Set
1509 "Battle Mountain" Log & Mine Timber Car Set
1510 "Battle Mountain" Climax mine locomotive dummy kit
1511 Restaurant/Passenger Station
1512 Cable Car Power House & Passenger Car Kit
1513 Cable Car Shop & Car Barn
1514 "Battle Mountain" Old Time Saloon and Office kit
1515 Rotary Snow Plow & Tender Project kit
1516 Jordan Spreader/Snow Crab & Tool Car
1517 Snow Dozer, Flanger & Snow Plow kit
1518 "Battle Mountain" Galloping Goose dummy
1519 Snow Plow dummy
1521 Mom's Family Diner
1524 Storage Shed
1550 "Moose Jaws" 0-8-0T Logging Engine kit dummy
It is a shame that when I started to collect these kits they were already out of production and many of the kits could no longer not be found.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

The Gallery of Monster Toys

Here is another post of a recently found and visited site."The Gallery of Monster Toys is dedicated to preserving a disappearing facet of our popular culture."

Blade Runner Miniatures Studio

The Massive Voodoo site featured these images of the Blade Runner miniatures studio, the place where the models for the movie Blade Runner were created.

The film depicts a dystopian Los Angeles in November 2019, in which a group of genetically engineered replicants, which are visually indistinguishable from adult humans, having become rebellious are to be terminated by the authorities... Awesome stuff!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Ratio #524 HO Gauge Weighbridge and Hut

This model is from Ratio’s TrackSide series and is one of those models that will fit into an American themed layout with very little modification.

The model depicts a small stone building with a slate roof, and there are separate door and window castings. The instructions depict a fence and lamp, both of which are not included in this kit. A piece of fence from another kit could be added and lamp could either be omitted or found in a parts catalog.

As you can see from the kit instructions there are two pieces that are added to either side of roof. There is no material included for the front and back. I have added styrene strips to either ends to give the model a more uniform appearance.

This model will probably be placed at a salvage yard.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Ratio HO Scale Grounded Van Body

This van body is of a European prototype and will be used on diorama I am planning. As you can see on the instruction sheet there is a wealth of details included in this kit. The kit includes one complete table, an extra table top, four chairs, two sets of steps, ladders, steal barrels and stove pipes; various sized wood planks and boards, and other details. The van and a few of the detail pieces have been completed. The model and its details just needs some paint. 

Friday, March 13, 2015

Fences from Leftovers

Fences can be used to hide imperfections on your layout or to create scenic blocks that bring one scene to a close and to open new scenes to the viewer. There a lot of premade fence materials available, however I believe some of the most interesting fences can be built from leftover materials.  One thing that a scratch built fence will give you over prefabricated fences is that you can create your fence lines to your exact dimensions.

Stone Walls

You can create this fence from a leftover piece of stone embossed sheet and cardboard. Embossed paper sheet for various materials can be found online. To add some rigidly you will want to use a cardboard backing. When using these walls closer to the edge of the layout or when both sides will come into view make sure that you use the embossed paper on both sides. Other than that you can just paint the back side a dark shade and call it a day.

I once read an article where the author cut out randomly sized stone shapes out from Strathmore board, painted them, and then glued them to some cardboard backing for a very nice affect.

Corrugated Fence

Corrugated material can be found in polystyrene, paper and metal foil. You can usually find it in these materials in the same places as the paper stone sheet, or suppliers like Campbell Scale Models, Evergreen ScaleModels and Rusty Stumps

I have bits of leftover corrugated material like that is found in Campbell structure kits. These metal foil odds and ends can be brought together to create a corrugated fence that will have the aspect of a fence that has been thrown together with whatever materials that were at hand.

Make sure you give the corrugated material a good undercoat before assembling. I usually paint these sections of corrugated material using a grey spray paint. In fact, this is the only method I have had success with painting this material. Let this base coat thoroughly cure before weathering.

Cut in various sizes or in a scale 3 by 6 feet, the normal width and height of corrugated material. Glue these sections to a cardboard backing with a bit of overlap, work left to right, and weather with pastel chalks to represent rust and grime.

Wood Fences

Wood fences can be created out of left-over bits strips of scale lumber, scribed wood or plastic sheet or even Strathmore board. Although using random width boards, either out of polystyrene or wood on a built up frame will take some time, this process will create a very realistic looking fence sections. You could leave out sections of the fence and even breaks a few the boards here and there for a more dilapidated look.

Distress the plastic or wood sheet with a piece of fine sandpaper or a hobby knife. Be careful here, you don’t want to scrape or cut too deeply into the plastic sheet. You do the same with the Strathmore board, but even more carefully. You for the fear of tearing the board don’t want to dig too deeply into the Strathmore board with the sandpaper.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Available Fence Kits in HO Gauge

There are loads of fence kits in HO gauge. This list is not meant to be a comprehensive list; there are other fence kits available in the scale. I only listed the fence kits I found the most interesting.

In my upcoming post I will provide some ideas on how to create your own fence sections out of various materials.

Available Fence Kits
Name of Kit Manufacture
Rustic Fence & Gate Kit Atlas
Hairpin Style Fence Atlas
Picket Fence & Gate Kit  Atlas
Picket Fence Bachmann
Insta-Fence  Bar Mills
Chain Link Fence BLMA
Board Fence  B.T.S.
Chain Link Fence Busch Gmbh
Wrought Iron w/Brick Posts Busch Gmbh
Fences & Railings Set Central Valley
Paddock Fence Faller Gmbh
Iron Garden Fence Faller Gmbh
10' High Chain Link Fence
(Photo Etched Stainless Steel)
Micro Structures
White Fences Model Power
Iron Fences Model Power
Rural Fences Noch GMBH & Co.
2-Slat Pasture Fence Noch GMBH & Co.
Chain Link Fence Plastruct
Corrugated Iron Fence Scale Structures
G.W.R. Station Fencing Ratio
G.W.R. Lineside Fencing (36 posts with wire) Ratio
Lineside Fencing (4 bar) Ratio
L.M.S. Station Fencing Ratio
Concrete Fencing Ratio
Meadow Fence Vollmer Gimble
Cornerstone Series(R) Chain Link Fence Walthers
Cornerstone Series(R) Detail Parts 'Wood'' Fence Walthers
Barbed Wire Fence - Etched Brass Kit Yesteryear Creations

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Eight Minute Empire-Battle Report-#2

In a review I have read about the Eight Minute Empire game it was mentioned how there seemed to be an element of luck in the way the cards were drawn. I can’t say that I have found this to be true as of yet, but in our last match we did find that the drawn cards can have a stifling affect on game play.

On more than few rounds the cards that allowed for movement were not available, while other rounds these cards were available, however, if you wanted to advance your armies you were forced to pay more for these cards.

Six cards are arranged at the top of the board. Each position, in which the card is placed, has an assigned cost; the last few cards having the highest cost. This didn’t seem to impede the game, but did make expanding into other regions a bit more challenging.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Irrational Number Line Games

I still need to post my review of Irrational Number Line Games Ace Goodknight and Penny Dreadfull: The Case of the Green Elephant. This issue is one of three in their Ace Goodknight and Penny Dreadfull Series RPG’s.

While I am still making my way through the scenario/rulebook, I wanted to introduce you to the Irrational Number Line Games home page. There are how-to’s on how to create props for your war games, war-game scenario’s, and other great resources for the war-gamer. Many of the props listed here are created using materials that are readily at hand.

Spring 2015 Reading List

Spring is about a week away and I am finishing up my readings of two novels. My winters reading list was supplanted by the works of H.P. Lovercraft, W.H. Hodgson, G. Gissing, E. Nesbit, and J. Verne and what a fabulous romp it has been.

My spring 2015 reading list is as follows:

1.       Forward March, Kirk Munroe
2.       Catriona, Robert Louis Stevenson
4.       The Black Arrow, Robert Louis Stevenson
5.       Moonfleet, John Meade Falkner
6.       The Man who Knew Too Much, Gilbert Keith Chesterton
7.       The Battle of Dorking, Chesney, G. Tomkyns
8.       Zero History, William Gibson

I have included two military themed novels, one of those, The Battle of Dorking was on my winters reading list. There are a couple of adventure novels, and who knows what else?

Monday, March 9, 2015

Small Projects # 2

I am always looking for something to do, especially a project where I can get instant gratification. So many of the projects I start seem to languish on my workbench. Seeing all the half-finished projects and my cluttered workbench torments me greatly; thus the “small” projects. With these projects I can see something to completion and I am encouraged to complete other projects.

Baggage Trolley

 This spruce included several HO scale components, but I am interested in the baggage trolley for now. I don’t remember what kit this spruce came from and so there are no instructions as to how proceed, but I believe I have figured out how to proceed.


This spruce of three bicycles scaled in 1/87 also came out of my details bin. These bicycles are not for the foreground, but painted and set aside some building, tree, or fence will work out somewhere at the mid-range of my layout.


This small kit will look great on a farm or industrial scene. I have had this kit for long time and don’t remember whether it came with instructions or not. After a few minutes of dry fitting I figured how to proceed.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Axis and Allies 1941 House Rules, version 1

I have created the following house rules for my Axis and Allies 1941 game. These rules are in flux.

Land Units


For an additional 1 UPC a player can add a machine gun to their infantry unit. A machine gun adds 1 to their attack and defense value. The machine gun stays with an infantry unit as long as there is an infantry unit in play. Once the last infantry unit is out of play the machine gun is eliminated from play.


Attacks with Tanks accompanied with at least 2 infantry get a 1 added to their attack and defense values. If either of the infantry is removed from play the tank reverts to their standard attack and defense values.

Air Units


A bomber must be accompanied by at least 1 fighter and must withdraw after delivering its payload. A bomber gets a 1 added to their defense if accompanied by least one fighter, another 1 if they have 2 fighters.  The bomber still must resolve any defensive actions from the defender before withdrawing.  On sites of industrial complexes the defender may roll 1 die after the bomber delivers their payload. A roll of 1 scores a hit on a bomber. Any defending fighters also get their turn at the attacking a bomber before it withdraws.

1 fighter must accompany the bomber back to its base. Additional fighters may choose to stay behind after the bomber withdraws. If there are no fighters left, then the bomber must go back alone. If the bomber overflies an enemy territory with an industrial complex and without a fighter as an escort the controller of that territory gets to fire its anti-aircraft gun once at the aircraft. If roll a 1 scores a hit on the bomber.

Sea Units


Transports must be accompanied by at least one surface escort ship (submarines do not count as surface ships).  Transports now have a defense of 2, but still have an attack value of 0. This defense value does not count toward submerged submarines, just surface ships.

If escort ships are eliminated instead of transports the transport can choose to continue to travel to their discharge point or withdraw from the conflict after resolving any attack rolls from the defender. Transports can now carry 2 infantry, 1 tank or 4 infantry or 2 tanks.

Aircraft Carriers:

An Aircraft Carrier must not enter a conflict zone without a surface escort ship. If an Aircraft Carrier no longer has an escort it must disengage from the battle. If it has fighters still out on a mission it can either wait for the fighters to land or let the fighters fend for themselves.


Battleships may not enter a conflict zone without at least one destroyer as an escort ship. If a Battleship is without an escort it must withdraw. A Battleship may fire its guns from a range of two spaces. It cannot fire through another ship or land mass.

New Mobilization Chart and Unit Prices

Here is a new mobilization chart indicating new costs for individual units.

Mobilization Zone
Land Units
2 for 5
3 a piece

Air Units

Sea Units
Aircraft Carrier

Friday, March 6, 2015

Floquil Weathering Leaflet

I found a leaflet in a set of Floquil’s weathering paints. This kit was part of their Railroad Colors line. Floquil has since discontinued this line of products, however alternatives can be found through the use of this resource by Microscale (PDF).

The set included several colors that allowed one to apply weathering to model trains and structures. The kit included six small jars of: rust, dirt, dust, mud, oily black, and grimy black.

The leaflet covered two aspects of weathering. I will summarize and will break the material down into three categories.


Fading should be applied at the time of painting the base coat . To simulate ageing Floquil suggests adding between 30 and 40% white to the base color.

Dust, Mud, and Grime Deposits

These effects are added after the base coat has been applied. These effects are best applied through the use of a wash and should be applied in a non-uniform method starting with the surfaces pointing up. This is where these deposits would typically collect and would be washed down by rain and snow.


Rust has no definite outline or color. Colors that can be used to represent rust can be from a bright orange to a deep brown. These variations of color can be found in the same area.

Doing Some Study of Your Own

I recommend doing some of your own observations while on your next outing. Carry a small notebook and keep notes of noticeable weathering effects on all types of objects. What colors are they? How were they viewed; were streaked, blotched, uniform or random?  Better yet take a camera and take a few pictures of these occurrences and jot down the simulated affects you want to convey. 

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Small Projects #1

Small projects are projects that can be completed in an hour or two. These projects include those that need some paint or need a bit of assembly. Most of my small projects are in 1/87 or HO scale, but other sizes and scales might fall into this category as well.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

For Sale 1964 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon & Motor Boat

Excellent shape
Low mileage
Original equipment
$10K or best offer

This 1/87 scale vehicle model, with its cream-colored body and day glow green motor boat is from EKO, and Spanish company. If I had seen the actual model before my purchase I wouldn’t have purchased it for my layout, EKO provides black and white line drawing of their models, so after receiving it I added it to my collection of 1/87 vehicles. It has a certain charm to itself and grows on you.

Information about the brand can be found on the 87th Scale site.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Bombshell Miniatures Pumpkin Pal and its Attributes

The Pumpkin Mutant is a 20mm miniature from Bombshell Miniatures. It is part of their Side Kick Collection. This miniature was on my January Projects list.

The Pumpkin Pal does not get a move action, but can grab a hold of you with its creeper vines if a player is within one space of the Pumpkin Pal.

The controller of this creature gets to roll a die. If they roll a 3 they have gotten a hold of a victim. They usually get one unawares; the person believes that they have just brushed against something out in the field. Before too long they feel the vine wrapping itself around their arm, ankle, or worse their neck.

When you start to feel the vine constricting around your bodily member it may already be too late to break free, but on roll of a 3 the player was able to tear themselves away from this insidious creature. This creature kills by constricting, asphyxiation or by the pure horror of it all. What do expect when wandering through a haunted pumpkin patch anyway?

I Like Old School Tactical Games

I do own a bunch of these “old school” games with their map boards and counters. Kickstarter is sponsoring a new WWII game by Flying PigGames. Old School Tactical has an easily to learn game system which simulates small unit engagements on the Eastern Front during 1941-42.

The game includes:

“Huge 30" x 41" maps with 1" hexes.
An unique impulse system to activate units.
Simple attack-defense = odds column combat system.”

The game has already reached one set of stretch goals and is one its way to second set of stretch goals. As of March 2, this project has another thirteen days until its close. 

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Projects for March

The beginning of March means we are closer to spring and warmer weather. Although I got some of my older projects out of the way I didn’t get as far as I wanted on my new projects last month, so I have added them to my March list.

  1. Warhammer Orc Arachnarok Spider – Trees
    These castings were a lot more detailed than I first had thought and it will take some time to pick out all these small details.
  2. Bombshell Miniatures Belphegor Winged Monkey(almost finished)

Old Projects

In attempt to clear my workbench of half-finished projects, and for something different, I have added two old HO gauge projects to this month’s project list.

Ratio HO-Gauge Trackside Buildings
507         Grounded Van Body
524         Weighbridge and Hut

Completed Projects

Reaper Miniatures
#03608: Aquatic Familiars II
Sea Monster (Aberration)
Octopus (Aberration)

Warhammer Dreadfleet
Graveyard - Leech Wyrm

Bombshell Miniatures
Pumpkin Buddy

Ristuls Market Halloween Basing Kit (10 resin miniatures)