Sunday, April 29, 2012

Avatars of War - Dwarf Berserker Finished

Now I'm normally not a dwarf lover.  I generally dislike all elves and dwarves, but the Avatars of War dwarves I do like.  They are very nice looking miniatures, and heavily muscled. 
I started painting this miniature a couple of years ago.  I experimented greatly with the fleshtones, actually using a purple paint wash for everything in the shadows. 
The purple definitely added a nice cool tone in the shadows of the miniature.
In hindsight, I should have used a different color for the cloth, too close to the goblin.
I think the red hair worked out pretty good.  The bronze metallics got a good weathering, that is about 5 shades of different colors highlighted with a gold.
The eyes are painted, but they are so deeply set in the head.
I like how the goblin head came out.  Love the green.  There you have it.  Entered it in the Adepticon Paint contest, but I knew that if everyone showed up it would not even come close to placing.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Another practice night at the Track

Adepticon behind me, so the focus this week was on the race track.  The good thing coming out of this second practice session tonight was that I was able to duplicate and improve upon what I did last week.  We a slight adjustment on the cross weight percentage to mimic the lead weight that I put on the kart towards the end of last week's practice.  And we went up in tire pressure 7 psi on the right sides and 5 psi on the left sides.  Went out and I looped in the corner on the first lap at speed.  Ran the rest of the laps on that session and found it a bit too loose but not bad.  Track was really cold and air temp tonight was in the low 50's F.  Came off the track and dropped 1 psi, went back out and ran really good, running 11 sec flat laps.  Felt pretty good.  Took 1/2 psi out of the right sides to see if it was better.  Went out with just my old man, gave him a straightway lead and ran him down.  Definitely think I found the right gear.   Went and did a second stint while hot with a big group.  Left some big gaps and ran down one kart with the Animal 206 and one with the Clone and blew by both of them.  Its a great feeling being fast.  Everything seems to be clicking thus far.  Noticed a bit of a backfire.  Got to the end of the night and noticed I lost an exhaust header bolt and sheared off the other.  So the night ended on a sour note.  Now I have broken bolt in the head to get out.  Think I caught it in time not to damage anything in the engine.  So should be okay.

So next week will be the real test, Race #1.  Can I be fast when it counts with a bunch of karts on the track and the adrenaline pumping.  I know come next Friday afternoon the butterflies will come.  It's great to feel alive and fast.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

My Adepticon Report....

Adepticon 2012 has come and gone.  I had successes, failures, and a great time.  I mad the trek down to Lombard, IL crossing the Cheese curtain that divides Wisconsin from Illinois, picture the great wall, but made out of cheese.  You can always tell you cross the border into Illinois by the horrible condition of the roads, the lack of proper road signs and directions, and the amount of freaking toll booths that I swear have tolls that double in cost every year. 

Started out Friday afternoon by entering the War Ancients Battles big crusade game.  This was great fun, a game hosted by RichN, of the Chicago Terrain Factory, his blog can be found linked at the following:  Chicago Terrain Factory  .  RichN was the organizer of all of the WAB events at Adepticon and filled in on a couple of seminars also I believe, great job Rich, I appreciate your efforts.  Well on to the game, I did not get all of my AoA crusaders done so I borrowed my buddy Jerrod's Normans to fill out my roster.  I found out that Jerrod and Lil' Matt (who's not so Lil'), two of my local gaming buddies, got screwed out of playing the Malifaux tourney that some great organizer decided to change the start time by email on, so they showed up an hour late and did not get to play.  So I spoke with Rich and we added them to our Crusades side since Rich had an extra 1500 pts and Jerrod could play his own Norman contingent.  The good guys team consisted of myself, Jerrod, Lil Matt, Merle, and Nostromo on the WAB forums.  The bad guys team was Mr. Bruins, RichN, Pat aka SoCalWarhammer, Mike Butcher who will be having coverage of the event at his blog at the following link:  The Butcher's Bill .
The Badguys won by a point, probably because Jerrod and I broke Butcher's infantry about a turn too late.  Next time.

Saturday was Warhammer Ancients Singles tourney.  Also a great time.  Prior to the games commencing I got see Mr. Battle Road Games himself, which you can read his Adepticon post at the following blog:  http://akersminis.blogspot.com/ Good to catch up with Mr. Akers, and he was kind enough to present me with a gift, namely the casting of some heads that his commissioned from the Bugman, Navarro found at the following blog:  The Bugman Great looking stuff Navarro did, I believe you can find this on sale the Battle Road website.  So matchups came down from RichN and I drew the ringer in Round #1, otherwise known as Xenite over at the Little Green Monster's and following blog: http://xenite.wordpress.com/  He was playing an Arab army, and I managed to pull out the win with my Romans.  Game 2 was against a veteran in SoCalWarhammer himself and his Greeks.  Now Pat is a very good player with a lot of gaming knowledge, which is evident at his blog:  http://nwhistoricalwargames.wordpress.com/ and he is also the man that does the Historical's Podcast:  http://historicalwargames.org/  This was a tough game and I tried to put up a fight, but quite frankly I was out classed.  So 1-1 and went into the third game with Romans versus Viking Shieldwall with the general being Matt from Appleton, WI.  Now this was sort of rematch of game 3 at our La Crosse WAB Tourney, and the outcome was the same, I lost.  In the end even at 1-3 I was like third from the bottom.  Ouch.  But hey Rich made sure everyone went home with a small prize, so I got another Roman figure to add to my collection.

Sunday was Warhammer Ancients Team tourney.  Well here's the trophy plaque:
Yes that is right, I'm one half of the Grumpy Old Coots team that took home the prize.  I and my crusader knightes were teamed with the afforementioned Mike Butcher and his Saxon Shieldwall.  And as the prize I got even more romans.  More on that later.

Oh and just for kicks I entered the Crystal Brush Painting Competition.  My entries were not in a stacked Fantasy and 40k Singles categories.  No awards there, just not good enough.  Not even close.

Oh and if you go to this event and are looking for good places to eat relatively close by, you need to go to the Patio and catch a game with your food.  Great place to eat.

So there you have it.  Sorry no pics, but checkout all of the blog links I posted up, as they will have some and besides they are great blogs, that I recommend.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Back From Adepticon

Just got back from a long drive home from Adepticon.  Had another great time at the best War Gaming convention in America.  Played WAB all weekend and even brought back a trophy.

More on all the events soon.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

You have the need for speed?? I cured mine tonight...for a week.

Oh boy, tonight was the first night at the asphalt race track with the new kart.  I cured my need this week and can not wait to go back next week.  I realize many of the readers here, probably, are not in to racing or go-karting, but this is just another of my strange hobbies. 

I hate going to things unprepared, so the I was nervous about this kart, the one that I have been showing lately.  We had not run any laps on these new karts and were hoping that they worked like we thought they could.  I was unsure how it would work, but I and the oldman were pleasantly surprised at the results.  It started out kind of slow, about four laps into the first practice session my Oldman lost it in a corner and spun out, I was not able to get under him and then he let off the brake and whamm, I drilled him and put myself in the wall.  What a way to start, but it did get rid of some of the jitters and cooled the excitement to get down to business and that was to figure things out.  And put the first scratch in my nice new paint job, oh well.  So, after that we got going and quickly. 

Its so much faster than last year that I'm going to need to get in better shape, although I did run about 80+ laps total in 10 - 20 lap heats. I'm running nearly double the tire pressure I ran last season, and all  of this is on a green race track that was dirty and did not have any rubber built into it.  The engine is definitely more powerful.  After the second practice session I dropped 1-psi out of all of the tires and moved the left rear tire in a 1/4-inch as I was a bit too loose coming out of the turn, nearly spinning out a couple times.  Went out for the third and fourth sessions and cured some of that, so definitely the right adjustments.  My oldman ran a slightly lower gear, but basically the same set-up and I pulled away from him down the straights, so we'll get him with the right gear next week or at least closer to what I was running.  The last two sessions I added a 6 pound lead weight to the left rear.  I noticed that 7-8 laps in to a 10-20 lap run, I would begin to get loose coming out of the corners, but I leaned with my body hanging out on the left side going through the corners that the kart would stick to the track better.  So the 6-pound weight.   First 15 lap session was awesome, pulled off, let the other karts clear out after their session and went out with the tires still plenty warm to run another session.  It stuck the corners good, maybe a bit too good, thinking that I should go up in tire pressure.  After that session I was flat worn out, not use to that G-loading in the corners, I need to work out my cardio a bit more.   I'll call tonight a success.  Smiles all around.   First test, passed.

Up next...this is the last post for this week.  Going to Adepticon on Friday, talk to you all next week.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Conquest Games Converted Crusaders ... Last unit for Adepticon

Got back home a bit late, spent the weekend with further preparations for racing Tuesday, but the last unit that I have done for Adepticon is a fairly big unit of Conquest Games Normans that I converted up.  I've shown quite a few of the miniatures thus far, below is the entire unit.
I'm pretty happy with these guys.  I think they turned out nicely.  I'm probably going to do another unit of them and hopefully some more infantry in the future.
Their horses have really grown on me. 
I blended the movement tray in with the others and with the bases of the minis.
So that is it for the Adepticon Crusader preparations.  I'll be playing in the Big Crusades Game on Friday with these guys, I'll also be playing with my Roman army on Saturday, and teamed with Mike Butcher on Sunday's WAB Team tourney, so if you are in the area swing by and say hi. 

So now the rest of the week, I'm somewhat freed up.  So with that in mind I'm going to finish up two minis an Avatars of War Dwarf and a 40k Ork.  Then I'll see if I can get a Viking all done for the Adepticon Paint Contest.  I don't really expect to win anything, but you cannot win if you do not enter.  Tuesday night is open track night, and I'm excited and nervous all at once, that competition bug is calling and there is a need for speed.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

The new Kart Finished....Ready to Go

As noted in my post late yesterday, we managed to finish up my new kart and get it race ready.  The body this year is a bit different.  Below is the fresh paint and decal additions.  All the damage from last year has been mostly fixed or hidden.
Yes, my Psychosis moniker follows me anywhere, minus the PC.  My old man did that.  I've been using that screen name online for as long as I have been online.
A shot from the front.  Last season I ran the old man's Animal engine once, but my motor mount was too far to right, and the air cleaner was way outside of the kart, which causes a problem when you run up near the wall.  This is much better.  The whole engine is shifted left for the oval, as is the speedway seat.
Another angle, the local track we run on uses a mix of rules of east and west coast.  The back of the seat is a full 14-inches off the ground.  The heat shield and chain guard are all polished aluminum.
Not the side panel skull, yep, the kart primarily being my old man's creation, like everything with him, whether custom made longbows and recurves, motorcycles, or now go-karts are named Deathwish Kart Racing.  The kart is frames are being named Vendetta.  He and I are running the first two, and we have already sold one to fellow competitor.
From these two you can kind of see its a tight fit.  Big guys have a hard time getting in and out.  I'm a little under 6 foot, its still a tight squeeze.
From the back you can see the offset.  We run ovals, left side weight and a good left rear-right front cross weight ratio are critical along with a number other ratio to get the kart to turn and rotate through the corners yet not lose straight away speed.  You can the see the heat shield abit better.  Note the open top steering wheel.  When sitting in the kart, you basically are looking through the opening.
That's it for now, more to follow.  So what do you think?  Look Fast?  Yet to be determined is whether the driver is any good.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Goal #1 Complete

Race Season quickly approaches paralleling Adepticon.  Went and spent the day with Old man Deathwish, got the kart finished, including decaling.    Then sat down in it on the scales under all four tires, working out getting the nose weight, left side weight, and cross weight ratios close to what we think will work, using a base line from last season to get there.  Then ran the engine for an hour or so to get in some break-in on the new engine and adjust the idle a bit.

The new speedway laydown seat will take some time getting used to, but boy do I fell low and good in the kart.  And speaking of low, I think I may get some sparks off the underbelly this season, could not do that last season as the nose was way up in the air.  All in all, I feel good about the set up, I think all of the off season changes will make a big difference.  We will find out in 10 days. 

Friday, April 6, 2012

The Conquest Crusaders grow

Its spring and the Crusade grows.  The following are more of my Conquest games miniatures, mostly converted.

Pic above of the shield.  Below another of the conveted Knights.  The one thing I'm noticing a bit painting the Conquest Minis is that they are easy to paint.  There is one small flaw that keeps showing up in the minatures and thats the mail sleeves are lacking a bit in depth on the molds.
Below you can see more of the horse conversion.  I also added the surcoat on this rider.
Below is the other red one, set more as a sergeant and not a knight.
I like this pose, quite cool looking for the right flank of the formation.  I'm sort of avoiding adding a bunch of crosses.
This is an interesting one.  Conquest Games makes these as Normans, and in their time period they were not known to couch their lances, used them essentially as spears.  This one I used a spear arm from my Gripping Beast's plastics and it sort of looks like a couched lance.
That's it for now, hopefully the next time you see these it will be as a full unit.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Old Stuff Wednesday - April ... Wargor #3

In the previous Old Stuff Wednesdays we saw two of my other Khorne marked Wargors.  This one came a couple years later, Wargor #3, the great weapon beastman character.  I really liked this miniature, so I did not really change it up much.
I did a bit more cloth on this backside of the model with greenstuff.  My style of painting had evolved so much from when I first did a whole lot of pieces in this army.  My style got a bit more sharp and controlled.
And this is one of those miniatures that just sort of paints itself.
So there you have it, another piece from my Khorne Beastmen.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Random thoughts and Rants

I attempted to watch the NCAA Championship Basketball Game last night...really I did.  I flipped on just as "The Fray" attempted to sing something that I maybe misconstrued as the National Anthem.  Whatever the hell that was that they were singing and playing definitely did not seem to be the National Anthem.  Now I don't know who "The Fray" is, I honestly do not know if I have ever heard a song from them other than this crap performance, I like hard rock/metal, a major Sevendust fan, and Iron Maiden fan, a Kiss fan.  Whoever hired them, then screened their version of the National Anthem, should be fired.  That was horrible, so bad in fact I thought I might throw something heavy at my flat screen, so I flipped the channel instead.  I prone to bursts of madness once and awhile. 

Probably good thing that I did.  So I missed this:
Where is this Alanta they talk about.  Apparently, our great institution known as the NCAA, does not know how to spell "Atlanta, Georgia".

I hadn't thought about the "Dumb Jocks" thing in some time.  Being an Engineer and a former "jock", I've always taken offense to that, thanks for reminding me NCAA, much appreciated.

I often read articles on various sports pages on-line, and some writers are very over-rated in my opinion, ie. Peter King, but omg have you ever read such crap as written by some of Yahoo's writers, ie. Chris Chase, Maggie Hendricks, Jay Busbee.  They are complete hacks.   How do they actually get jobs writing sports articles?  Please, if you like sports like I do, avoid these writers like the Plague.

I just saw pictures of these new Perry Miniatures (Wow what a transition eh?) on Architects of War's blog... Perry Knights and other minis Awesome stuff.

Then I saw these by Claymore Castings over at the Saxon Dog... English Archers Those are awesome indeed, may need to pick up a few of them.  Its a great time for being into historical miniatures.

I'm two weeks away from running hot laps on with my go-kart at the local speedway, and I'm still not ready.....crap.....hopefully I'll be ready by the weekend.  And Adepticon is two weeks plus a couple days, and I'm still not ready.....damn.  That's going to be a busy week, but I'm looking forward to both. 

Recently, I had someone approach me about sponsoring my amateur go-kart racing.  This is not big time racing, there are no big time sponsors unless you know someone that enjoys burning money, so I bit.  Turns out the sponsorship gig turned into if you hire me to wrap your go-kart, I'll give you a 50% off price for the wrap and complete lettering and put my name on your go-kart.  Yea....some deal there...I know how to paint, thanks but no thanks.  I don't know too many sponsors that ask you to pay for their sponsorship.

I'm also huge into boxing and MMA, so yes I saw that Brock Lesnar has decided to return to the WWE.  I also see that a huge number of people are dumping on him, thinking he's a wimp and quit the UFC because he was not tough enough.  The guy is a former NCAA wrestler, he knows how to wrestle, but the stand-up games was not really there, and not everyone can pick that up quickly.  I'm not one of those that will dump on him, the guy has a difficult disease to deal with, has had couple of surgeries because of it, most experts thought his career was over once diagnosed but he attempted to return, and it was obvious that he could not take a body shot in his last fight, probably the result of what he is going through physically.  So, I can not fault him for going back to the fake stuff while still young and able to make a big payday.  Hopefully, he walked away with huge money bags from Vince McMahon.

I see the NFL front office asked DeMaurice Smith and the NFLPA to weigh in on the degree of discipline to be exacted on those players involved in the New Orleans Saints Bounty program.  Always thought the NFLPA was a bunch of hacks, I bet they pass on protecting their own from bounties and argue for not punishing those that took part in attempting to injure their fellow players.  The NFL Network should also suspend Warren Sapp for his snitch witch hunt and comments about Shockey.

And I still don't understand why Ungor were named what they were named.