Thursday, 17 December 2009

I came across these photographs on ebay, and purchased them. They are of Matilda II T6909 "Greenock" of the 7th RTR. The photo says the tank is abandoned in Dunkirk, certainly on the beach front, looking at the sand everyhwere. Of interest is the diagonally striped circle on the rear left of the turret. It looks like the 2 Pdr has been spiked, judging by the messy barrel end.
The white BEF recognition squares are visible on the hull side. Also take note of the raised suspension, subsequently lowered for action in North Africa.
These have got me messing around with the Matilda II master again.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

And some WIP from Mike. The Waffen SS have gone in the post to Nick for putting in a mould.
The Belgians are nearly done. I spent yesterday explaining to Mike that Belgian artillery wear bonnet de police, line wear the Adrian helmet, and Chasseurs wear berets, so I think he has the message that different heads are the order of the day. The line infantry Adrian helmet sculpts have the lion badge, and I think Mike is trying to sculpt individual teeth, looking at the detail on the heads I received :->
Thanks for all the help from Carl de Roo and the Belgian cadre with the information.
I now have the Dutch contingent sending excellent information on their forces.
No word from the Scots though.

Work in progress.
I found the lower hull of the once started Sd.Kfz. 221. The top half of the hull and the turret are quite challenging so I put it down again, and made a cup of coffee. After numerous cups of coffee I eventually put it down again, this time with a top, turret and mudguards glued on.
Time for another espresso.

Sunday, 6 December 2009

"Big Frank" BEF Highland Scot figure- a bit taller than the rest,
but if you know the real Frank you will know why.

Scots in Tam'O'Shanter caps.

Normandie Char FCM 2C.

Monday, 16 November 2009

Back from Crisis in Antwerp, and what a nice show it was. Unfortunately the camera decided to break whilst we were at the Dunkirk Memorial, so no photographs of that visit, or of Cassel.
I received photos of the resin work ongoing with the Char FCM 2C. I already have the first turrets out of the mould, and the hull has taken a bit longer to dry, due to its enormous size. It is planned to be a limited run, with ten produced initially. If anyone would like one, they are going to be £25 plus postage.
I also received the master castings of the Highland conversions in Tam-o-shanter hats. The production run should follow shortly.
Mike has nearly finished Waffen SS pack 2, and the first four Belgians are being worked on at the same time. They should not be long either.

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

The restocks finally arrived. Nick at North Star and Griffin got me the bits I needed to fulfill the orders, and enough to make the visit to Antwerp viable. To be honest, selling anything at Antwerp is a bonus, as the whole trip is always enjoyable, as long as the Belgian Highway Authorities are not closing motorways. Last year we sat in traffic between Ghent and Antwerp for five hours, but the Tin Soldiers were still at the venue, waiting for the stragglers to arrive on the Fiday night.

We are making a detour this year on the way to Antwerp, to visit the Dunkirk Memorial and then head down to Cassel for lunch and a wander around the place. If time allows I'm turning off the old Wormhoudt road to find Esquelbec cemetery. I'll post some photos if I remember the camera.

Monday, 5 October 2009

Thanks to all the chaps who purchased stuff. Much appreciated, but totally unlooked for.
I have asked Griffin to restock vehicles, as I intend to go to Crisis. The Eurotunnel policy on refunds is unclear, and I have paid to get across, so might as well make a weekend of it, and visit a few sites, such as the Dunkirk Memorial and Cassel on a roundabout route to Antwerp.
The figure moulds are now with Nick at North Star. Hopefully I can get him to spin some more up, because I have now run out of the stock of BEF2 and BEF3.

The situation regarding the figure casting is still an unknown factor, but I am sure Nick will help where he can. The Belgian figures are still in the process of being sculpted, and would have been ready for Crisis if a series of unfortunate events had not befallen Mike. They will be released, firstly Chasseurs Ardennais, who are the "Elite" of the Belgian army, followed by some Line and Artillery.

Artillery is planned for all of the nations, and the 18-25 pdr and limber is cast. Mike will get around to crewing it when he has a bit more time. The Vickers MG will also make an appearance, as will the MG34. For the Belgians I am undecided as to whether to go for the Hotchkiss or the Browning.

The British and Germans will also be filled out, with such things as command packs and more rank and file. I am not able to give dates, but if I can keep it growing then I will.
Someone mentioned motorcycles... Hmmm. Willie B even mentioned FN Trimotors...A couple of times. I'll see what can be done.

Once again, thanks for the support across the internet, and I will be adding some Too Fat Lardies TOE PDFs to the website once I work out what to do.

Saturday, 3 October 2009

A new day, and a surprising amount of support and a few orders to help out. I am very grateful for this. It is not my intention to "cry wolf" and see if I can generate interest through negative postings, such as BEF is closing down. I am now in the awkward postion of realising that there are people out there who want the stuff. It is very much the chicken and the egg situation with something like this. There will never be sales of big battalions, because the figures are for smaller scale skirmish games, requiring fewer to be purchased than say Napoleonics or SYW.
I want the Belgians. I probably want them more than Carl or Rudi. I do not expect them to sell in great numbers, but they add a completeness to the initial releases. I will take stock of where I am at. One option that has been suggested is to produce a few trucks and simpler vehicles, which can be cast in resin. As early war vehicles were generally open cabbed, there is no need to make resin blocks. I will try this first, and see if things like the Einheits LKW, Morris CF 6 wheeler and the Belgian GMC truck can be made cheaply but maintain the quality I require.. This in itself will take some time. I'll see what I can sort out. In the meantime orders will be fulfilled, and I'll work on trying to get BEF on a more even keel,with a view to continuing.

Friday, 2 October 2009

I have decided to put BEF on ice. Sales of figures haven't made enough to sustain the costs involved, and the interest is minimal in the products. Combined costs of sculpting, casting, website and research are greater than the sales receipts, therefore it is not a viable business proposition at the moment.

Saturday, 19 September 2009

I have finally finished the Char FCM 2C. The French Char de Rupture.
Measuring 180 mm in length, I have placed a BEF Miniature alongside.
I hope to get the thing cast up in resin, due to its rather large size.

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Some new figures on the horizon are the remaining four SS to complete the first section.
Both Duncan Hamilton ( Semi-Official painter) and myself experimented with painting the planetree camouflage on the smocks. I went with a slightly lighter base beige colour, and dark green with light green overprint. The whole job needs colours adding over colours, and I found some useful colour camouflage patterns on the Artizan Designs website.
There are also some Scottish in battledress with Tam O'Shanter hats with the caster, and some more German conversions.
On the vehicle front a Panzer II Ausf B has been completed, and is at the casters, together with a Belgian T15, and Vickers Utility Tractor B.
Mike is sculpting Belgians at the moment. Chasseurs Ardennais first, then some Line Infantry.

Those dastardly SS Totenkopf.

The first two packs of German infantry, with the support MG34 LMG.

The Campaigns in the Netherlands, Belgium and France have always interested me, and to that end, coupled with my interest in 28mm skirmish wargaming, and friendship with the talented Mike Owen of Artizan Designs, I am on my way to producing the figures and vehicles that I need and want. The initial figures for the range have been released, and many of the vehicles from the recent Chieftain Models range have been retained. BEF Miniatures is a project that I am happy to share with other wargamers, and the sales side of it is there to enable me to increase the range.

I hope to add photos of new figures, vehices, artillery and scenery along the way, and to provide some scenarios from those days in May 1940.