Lizard, finished

Here's the Guy Lizard ACV I showed in the raw in my last post, now all painted up and ready for service.

It will cost me an extra 12 points to upgrade my BEF FHQ from a staff car to this, but it might be worth it to keep them safe from my wildly erratic mortarmen.

Lizard Guy. I mean, Guy Lizard.

I've put together a digital model of a Guy Lizard ACV in 1:100 scale — estimated from photographs with blokes in them, since I have no concrete dimensions at hand — and I've got it on the printer at this very moment.

Hopefully next time my BEF commander gets bombarded by his own mortar battery, he'll be safe and snug inside an armoured shell. (I can't remember, offhand, what it costs to upgrade from a staff car to the Lizard, but what the hell...)

Because the roof and engine cover have such gently sloping surfaces, I split the model in half to print it vertically rather than sitting on its wheels. This minimises the visible print lines, which can be distressingly obvious when the slope is very gradual, even at very fine layer heights. I'm kind of curious to see how it will turn out, but I'll just have to wait until tomorrow morning to see.

I've put the model up on Shapeways at — whether it will pass their pre-printing checks is anybody's guess, as they're steadily becoming a more and more crappy business, and their site has become next to impossible to use.

Here's my two-part FDM print, fresh off the printer and assembled. I've photographed it alongside an undercoated Dorchester as a scale reference; I suspect the Lizard might be just a tad too large, as the Dorchester was noted for its spaciousness. However, it's not so big that it will look out of place on the table top, and it will do for me.

Thankful For Small Blessings

Shock news! The shonky airbrush supplies company I ordered a Badger Sotar 20-20 from way back in January have finally broken down and sent me an airbrush.

Not the version I actually ordered, mind — I ordered the Fine needle/tip, and they sent me a Medium — but at this point I'm prepared to call it a partial victory and just close the book.

Somehow I don't think I'll be doing business with Midwest Airbrush Supply again any time soon. Maybe this is an indication they're getting their act together, maybe it's because I demanded a refund, or maybe it's just a response to the fact that I was making my displeasure known across a range of internet platforms where airbrushery types hung out. I don't know, and at this point I don't much care.

I do have to say, even though they sent me the wrong version, the Sotar 20-20 is a stunningly fantastic airbrush. I'm almost afraid to use it, it's so gorgeous. The finish on all the parts is beautiful, and the action is the smoothest I've ever felt on an airbrush.

I shall have to put some paint through it and see how it sprays.

I knocked up a stand to fit it in Blender.

The STL can be got at

Sculptural Supports

I really like the way Cura's auto-generated tree supports form themselves sometimes.

This one looks to me like those gosh-darned Duke Boys stole th' moonshine truck and jumped it over th' crick agin. Or maybe it's a truck being pulled down to hell by some kind of sand-tentacle-elemental critter.

The model is from m_bergman's 1:100 "LRDG Chevrolet" set. The truck is about 65mm long.

Austin Ten Staff Car

I need some more softskins for my 15mm BEF, and while I was looking through what m_bergman has to offer in that line, I found a set of Austins he has designed. There are various Tilly light trucks, a civilian Austin Ten, and this one, the staff car.

So, now my FHQ senior officers have something comfortable to zoom about in. After all, we can't expect them to have to suffer like the common soldiers.

Regrettably, the layer lines on the front windscreen make it look a bit like it has a venetian blind hanging in there, but that won't be all that noticeable when it's on the wargames table.

BEF Matilda II 1940

 Last night I played an early-war game of Battlegroup with Steve Hoare, and realised that I had neglected my 15mm infantry tanks tragically. Therefore, I resolved to print some more Matildas, in this case the 1940 version with the trench-crossing tail installed, and the armoured Vickers gun in the turret.

I modified the model slightly, both to ease printing and to allow for the addition of magnets under the turret. I also chopped off the 2 pounder and left a socket there, for later installation of a new gun turned from a bit of brazing rod. I got some very visible layer lines on the sloping panels of the hull; I'm printing another one up on its end, which should ameliorate that issue a bit. I'll never get rid of them entirely (unless I get a much more expensive resin printer) but if I can mitigate them as far as possible, I will.

Here it is alongside a Battlefront Matilda II
I assembled and painted quite a few years ago.

Later That Day...

This is the hull that I printed standing up on its end. As I hoped, the change in orientation gave me a much cleaner print, and the top surface detail is quite a bit crisper. Printing the sloping panels in this orientation compresses the layer lines, so the diagonals are smoother — there are still layer lines visible, but they'll pretty much disappear under a coat of paint. Another benefit, though less important from an aesthetic point of view, is that there's a lot more detail in the track links. They're not usually all that visible on the wargames table, but it's nice to know it's there if I want to look at it.

The down-side is that it increases the printing time by about an hour, but that's not a huge deal. It means 7½ hours instead of 6½ (plus another hour or so to print the turret).

2 pounder turned from a bit of brazing rod, using a cheap electric drill as an impromptu lathe.

Lizard, finished

Here's the Guy Lizard ACV I showed in the raw in my last post , now all painted up and ready for service. It will cost me an extra 1...