Sunday, 9 March 2014

Pooch - Australian Quads Part One, or Why Colin is bad

I am unashamedly a magpie. I love being able to walk into a store, see something I really want, and then buy it. Or see something I really want, realise that it is not pay week, then froth for the next week until it IS pay week, and buy it.

So last time I was in the toy shop near my work (buying sheep of all things) I spotted this.

I have already got a fair few of the other Airfix kits. You can find my Jackals in Despatches 1, I have the landrovers on the painting table and I have box of the infantry, plus the spares from the vehicle kit.

Now, don't for a second think just because I am a magpie that I love it all. I do not find the infantry to my tastes, especially given that they are proper 1/48, rather than Empress or Eureka being 28mm. I think they suffer a bit from being done (I think) on a computer, some of the edges aren't as crisp as I am used to with the other manufacturers. Plus assembling the infantry is harder than it needs to be. Probably the only reason I haven't thrown my toys (literally in this case) about them, is that I know that Queeg (here) has made a wonderful job of them, so I somehow keep it in my head that I can do that too.

But, for all I don't care for the infantry, I do really care for the vehicles. I love the shape of the Jackal, it has wonderful detail and just looks cool. The landrovers are great as well, I will quite happily pick up another set when I see them. And the Warrior? Well, I will probably get one of those too. I did say I am a magpie after all!

So why on earth would I buy the quads, knowing I don't like the infantry? Well, I like the idea of quads. They are a mainstay here in NZ on the farms, I have ridden a few myself.

Plus there are cool pictures like this!

And you know what? I was not disappointed at all by the kits. The quads themselves are probably my favourite of the Airfix Herrick range that I have got my grubby mitts on so far. Well designed, well cast and they look good. I made some little modifications to mine, adding an AT4 and changing the location of the spare wheel just to add some variety. The quads come with trailers, which are well enough designed to be detachable, which suits me just fine when I am building scenarios around them.

With the Quads assembled, it was on to the crewmen. And here is where Colin comes in.

Here I was, all ready to have a couple of British Quad Bikes. Maybe crewed by paras, maybe commandos, maybe Mercians. I hadn't decided. And then Colin says something like "Those Quads will go great with your new Auzzies Pooch". (cue evil laugh from Colin bawahahahaha) And that was that. The seed of doubt was placed, so now I have to have Auzzies on the quad bikes.

So I needed to convert the British crew into Auzzies. I identified some key points of difference- Head, Kneepads and pockets.

Step 1- Kneepads. One of the features of the Crye uniform is the hexagonal kneepads.

To make them, I started out by rolling out a thin layer of greenstuff and put it over the knees

He kept falling over, hence the hand of God. Silly headless auzzie....

Next step was to cut the rectangle to be roughly the right size for the kneepad. The key here is to make clean cuts the whole way through of the greenstuff, that way you are only going to lift away what you don't want, not the whole kneepad. It is also worth thinking about the angle which the kneepad is on, for example these quad bikers it is not going straight up/down due to the way the leg is.

The third step is to turn the rectangles into hexagons. Ideally these won't be even, because the way proportions work with a bent knee mean that they should be a bit different, the key is to make it "look" right. Again, make sure to make nice clean cuts through the greenstuff, otherwise you will end up lifting the whole kneepad.

The last step is probably the most difficult, simply because it is fiddly. The kneepad is a hexagon, but it has a rectangular hole cut in the middle of it. And put simply, that is exactly what needs to be done. It is a bit easier with these quad bikers to cut the rectangle, because they have quite a defined kneecap, due to the fact that they are sitting! The key here again is to make sure you are careful with what you take off, start with a smaller rectangle.

Anyway, next step is the head (which I have done) and the pouches (which I haven't). Plan is to finish them tonight, and have something up here soon.

Oh, and I said I was going to tell you how to paint Crye Multicam didn't I?



  1. These look pretty good so far Chris and teh heads look like they will fit perfectly!

    1. Thanks Craig, the kneepads have come up well, working on the pockets at the moment.