Building these figures was actually started years ago, before the entire hobby
was effectively put on hold for a number of years. As a result, one of the
figures was in rather bad shape after lying around in various places gathering
dust, and having suffered some unsuccessfull plastic surgery in the past.
Fortunately, none of this proved too difficult to fix, and the running soldier
is now closest to completion.
A second figure had already been built earlier, but as this is a late release of the set, which included two copies of the same set in one box, this was pretty much an non-issue.
This box of soldiers is the first kit since returning to the hobby that will be built away from home. Thanks once again to Mirjam and Tjeerd for putting up with a 35 year old kid in addition to their own, more conventionally aged, ones.
Building the British infantry kit will occasionally come to a halt when the various paints and putties need to dry. In order te keep occupied at such times, I've also dug up a few fantasy figures. I'll be working on painting these during the plastic breaks, and the results, if any, will show up on the fantasy miniatures page.
On the whole, I don't like serial production of miniatures very much, which incidently goes a long way towards explaining why I never got into table top wargaming: I just don't have what it takes to paint a whole army of similar figures. Since this box contains more than one figure, I needed to decide which ones to tackle first, and picked the ever so (ir)relevant criterion of backpack size to base my selection on. Sounds rather ridiculous, but there's a reason for this. The large packs require me to sand the soldier's backs flat, and scratchbuild the straps coming from the top of the pack and then down the front of the soldiers' bodies. This means the running soldier, the kneeling rifleman, and the Bren gunner have been started first.
A few months into the project, I've reached the point where all the parts of the running soldier are beginning to come together, with the other two one or two building sessions behind. I expect to have some finished figures to show for it by the end of April.
The other two figures hit some minor, but time consuming snags. A major snag generator has been the Humbroll Dark Earth paint. The moment you even think of touching a surface painted with it, you've got fingerprints, and recoating from exactly the same tin will still produce colour differences (even without prior fingerprinting). I really do not like this paint. I'm now testing the Xtra Colour equivalent. I haven't tried recoating anything yet, but at least it's much more resistant to fingerprinting.
The kneeling rifleman and the brengunner are now complete. These were both finished with the nasty, but flat Humbrol dark earth. The Xtra Colour paint behaves a lot better, but isn't really flat, so I'll have to resort to a flat top coat once the rest of the set is completed with it. By and large I'm happy with the two new figures, but I'm diappointed with the Xtra Colour flesh. It's much closer to the real thing than Humbrol's flesh, but it looks very pasty, although this doesn't really show in the pictures. I had high hopes for it, but I guess I'll just have to go back to mixing my own from now on. Still, with these two flesh tones, which are roughly at the pasty and pink ends of the flesh tones range, I'll at least have a decent set of paints to start with.
The remaining three figures in the set have been started. The arms and legs are by and large connected, and now it's putty and sandpaper time.
Sometime during the past few years, quite a bit of work got done. All but the prone rifleman are now complete. The prone shooter is being a bit of a problem. The butt of his rifle is about a third of the way down his upper arm. I can make this look reasonable good, but having fired just such a rifle I can promise you that that is not where you want the recoil of an SMLE to go. I'm going to have a long think about this figure.
Long think my boot. This was going to be an out-of-the-box build, and that includes not so clever posing. Once that was decided, a few hours of fiddling with paint and CA glue completed the figure.