Ancient Ruin

This is another terrain piece from Printable Scenery, this time one from their Ancient Ruins set.

At the moment all it has on it is paint, but I think I might add some moss and weeds in between some of the flagstones.

The figure is from Reaper, a huge warrior of some kind, fully 40mm from the soles of his feet to the top of his head. I think that would make him about eight feet tall in 28mm sizing.

More Printable Scenery

I've been making a lot of use of Printable Scenery's range of 3d printable buildings for my 15mm wargaming terrain. Up until now, they've been supplied as multi-piece models, one piece per floor and the roof, and with some interior detail. Now they've updated the file sets to include single-piece solid alternatives of the same models.

It is certainly useful to have models on the tabletop which you can put figures inside, but most of the time it's not necessary. So it's useful to have alternative one-piece models available that match the hollow versions, and are both easier to handle and quicker to print and paint. Because they're alternates for existing hollow models, it's a simple matter to swap them out on the tabletop if it becomes necessary.

I think this one is their French Farmhouse.


This is an old WotC pre-paint, one of the lucky-dip figures they were selling in boxes of about ten assorted minis way back when.

The poor unfortunate about to be gobbled up is a halfling from my D&D game, a character whose name I don't even remember now, who survived only just long enough for me to paint this mini for him, before being garroted and disembowelled by an assassin as a warning to others.

Colour Balance Target

I have a pretty decent camera now, which is held back mainly by my own ignorance and incompetence. It is, in theory, highly configurable in terms of the images it spits out, but 99% of the time I rely on its automatic settings, as they generally do a good enough job for my purposes.

Wrestling with colour balance for photography under lights is something that has always been problematic. I know that its possible to get lights that are tunable — that is, the colour temperature is adjustable, so it's possible to get a reliable simulacrum of daylight from them. However, I can't afford that sort of thing, so I rely heavily on software colour adjustment and standard "cool white" LED lamps.

I put together this little colour and tone target, printed from my CMYK laser printer. It's not nearly good enough for scientific accuracy, but it gives me a repeatable reference to work from, which is an improvement over guessing.

I Like My Maxes Dickered

The 10.5 cm K gepanzerte Selbstfahrlafette ("10.5 gun on armoured self-propelled mount") was a prototype self-propelled gun used by Nazi Germany during World War II. Although it was originally designed as a Schartenbrecher ("bunker buster") for use against the French Maginot Line defences, following the defeat of France it was evaluated for use as a long-range heavy tank destroyer on the Eastern Front, but action reports were not encouraging and no more were built after the first two.

It was colloquially known as Dicker Max ("Fat Max").

This is a 1:100 scale FDM 3d print, from a model by Zac Kavulich. The figures are Battlefront 15mm German early war grenadiers.

Yet Another Robot

This 3d printed robot is a freebie from somebody's Kickstarter. I've printed it at 200% of it original size, which makes it roughly 34mm tall.

Monsters of the Psychedelic Era

These are Topps Monster sticker designs from 1965, the artist being (probably) Basil Wolverton.

I remember these sorts of things cropping up here and there in my youth; they were all part and parcel of the style that produced the Rat Fink hot-rod cartoons and the like.

Somewhere in the AD&D DMG there are some random generation tables for creating demonic critters from the infinite planes of the Abyss. These guys would suit quite well as pictorial resources for the sort of nonsense that results from those tables.

Sorcerer's Tower from Printable Scenery

I thought I'd try my hand at a larger piece of 28mm fantasy scenery, and went for this one: the Sorcerer's Tower from Printable Scenery.

I was unprepared for how large it would be, nor for how long it would take to print. It ended up taking me six days of more or less non-stop printing to get all the major components done (minus doors), and god knows how long it will take to paint it. When I get around to painting it, which might be a while, because I'm well and truly sick of it now.

Stage 1: I decided to print it from top to bottom, on the theory that if I got delayed for any reason, I could still use it as a smaller tower without needing any of the under-bits. As it happened, that wasn't an issue, but the theory was sound I think.

Stage 2: The first stone tower bit. Only the top two pieces are primed in this photo. You can see that I had some printing issues with the balusters around the top balcony; I'm vaguely considering cutting that whole section of the balustrade out and replacing it with a traditionally modelled "crappy DIY" repair of planks and things.

 Stage 3: more tower. It's all sitting on my modeling table. The blobby things around its base are Mushroom Men.

Stage 4: the last of the tower segments is complete.

There's a spiral staircase running right up through the whole height of the tower, which is nice I guess, but it's unlikely ever to be seen much.

The wizard in the doorway (for scale) is an old Grenadier figure; a Julie Guthrie sculpt I think. It came as one of a boxed set of 25mm wizards.

 Stage 5: the ground floor of the house part of the structure.

The figure up on the top balcony is a 28mm (more like 32mm really) monk, from Reaper.

Stage 6: the first floor of the house.

Stage 7: All the major components finished at last.

That main roof section was a 29 hour print, just on its own.

Fungus Folk

This is the test-paint piece, upon which I'll base all the others.
It's fairly quick and simple, so it shouldn't take forever to paint up the whole group.

For certain reasons I'm in the process of printing up a small army of Mushroom People (about a couple of dozen, in the end) and I need to start to consider how to paint them.

Fungi are remarkably diverse when it comes to coloration, but I've decided to stick with that old trope of the amanita muscaria, if for no other reason than that it's immediately identifiable as being mushroomish.
The models are
Mushroom Folk by Fat Dragon Games
— they're cheap. You should definitely buy them.

I intend to end up with a couple of dozen of them; this is just the first lot.


Here's a canoe, a free model I got from, along with a Reaper monk for scale. It will fit two figures comfortably, three at a squeeze.

I printed it at pretty low rez (0.2mm) for speed, and it looks pretty OK I think. It would be better at a higher resolution of course, but I'm using it as a game token, not as a diorama piece, so this is fine for my purposes.

I imported the STL into Blender and stretched it to make a three-seat and four-seat canoe, one each of which are on the printer at this very moment.

Ram Kangaroo (revisited)

 I painted one of these once before, in the colours I thought it would have appeared in the Italian campaign, but it turned out that the Kangaroo didn't come into service until after that Mud/Black scheme was abandoned. So, here it is again in plain old olive drab.

The figures are Battlefront's old 15mm Mediterranean Brits.

Rear view

The model does have a little bit of interior detail. Not much, but a little.

Bergman SU-76 M Remix

This is a remix I've done of M. Bergman's 1:100 scale SU-76 M model.

All I've done is separate the fighting compartment and gun, to ease the placement and removal of supports, and add track pin and guides detail.

You can get the STLs (free) at

My Printer Ruined My Ruin

This is the Medieval Church Ruin from Printable Scenery. It's a companion piece to a non-ruined medieval church of the same design, and I got it for cheap as part of a bundle. It's modelled for 28mm miniatures, but I've printed it here at 50% for use with 15mm figures — though it's a wee bit small, and 60% would be better.

Alas, my printer's layer-shifting chose this time to reassert itself, so the ruin is even more ruinous than it really should be. It's still usable as piece of wargaming terrain, but a stone structure this wonky would be so unstable that it would come down with a sneeze.

I am working my way through all the possibilities to diagnose the source of the layer-shifting, but it's a long slog. It's one of the most infuriating 3d printer problems, because it can hide itself until exactly the worst possible time, and then spring forth again like the monster in a horror movie that everyone assumes has been destroyed.

I'll probably reprint this model after I've got the printer running smoothly again, assuming I ever do.


This is a model by Schlossbauer on Thingiverse, printed by me on my Ender 3.

It's a Hezrou, which used to be called a Type II Demon back in the ancient AD&D days. It stands about 45mm tall.

I ended up having to slice its base off and print it lying at 45° on its back; I've been having issues with the nozzle knocking into tree supports recently, which is a bit of a pain. It's now based on a 33mm fender washer, which I prefer in any case, as it adds a bit of weight to the plastic model and lowers its centre of gravity.

One of the many, many advantages of 3d printing for gaming miniatures is the ease with which they can be re-scaled. The fully painted one here is printed at 100% of its designed size; the other primed examples are, from left to right, printed at 120%, 80%, and 50%.

It's good to have a bunch of monsters that are obviously the same species, but not all completely identical.

Panzer Grey (yet again)

This is a colour photograph taken by Hitler's personal photographer, Hugo Jaeger, of German troops standing around waiting to parade. It's early in the war; the panzer troops are still in their big black berets, and all the equipment is still painted grey. Interestingly, there are no balkenkreuz or tactical numbers showing on any of the vehicles, but they may very well have been freshly painted specifically for the parade.

Although it's a colour photo (not a colourized black & white photo), that doesn't necessarily mean the colours are accurate. At best, we can look at elements that are in known colours to judge the colour balance and exposure of the image as a whole.

In this case, there's not a lot to choose from. The colour of the German No.1 uniform of the men on horseback is reasonably well known from existing museum pieces, and there's the skin tone of the men. To me the colour balance looks fairly good, though the image as a whole is perhaps a fraction under-exposed.

Jeep (1:100)

"I told you, you should have gone before we set off."
A jeep in 1:100 scale is a teensy tiny little thing.

This one is mostly a model by M. Bergman, I've just added a driver and passenger and printed it on my Ender 3.

The quality is adequate for wargaming purposes, but small items like this, and especially the two crewmen, would be much better printed on a resin printer. I shall have to get one of those one day.

21st Panzer Stuff

Because I have the attention span of a mayfly, I've started a new project: some of the conversions of French AFVs used by the 21st Panzer in Normandy. I haven't seen anything much of these things available digitally — I'm sure there are some models out there, I just haven't found them.

I'm beginning with the 105mm Gesch├╝tzwagen 39H(f), because almost all of it can be re-used for the PaK40 version as well.

I'm starting from Marco Bergman's 1:100 scale Hotchkiss H39 hull, chopping it up and adding new detail to the running gear. The superstructure comes next, and then the two guns.


Got the basic shell of the superstructure pretty much done, though with quite a bit more work than I expected. Blender's "solidify" modifier seldom creates a shell of consistent thickness, unfortunately, but I haven't found a better way to do this sort of thing. I just have to resign myself to doing a whole lot of manual tweaking afterwards.

Later still....

Very nearly finished now. There are still some bits and pieces to attend to, like the muffler and tools and what-not, but this is just about done. Which is good, because I'm a bit bored with it now.

Ancient Ruin

This is another terrain piece from Printable Scenery, this time one from their Ancient Ruins set. At the moment all it has on it is pai...