Skeletons, Sir, Farsunds of ‘Em!

Don’t shoot until you see the dark sockets of their eyes!

Crossposted from my other blog, Pound Store Plastic Warriors

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2018/09/08/pound-bag-skeleton-warriors-1-a-bag/

Blog posted by Mark, Man of TIN, for Pound Store Plastic Warriors, 8 September 2018.

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Spy on the Farm? Pound Store Plastic Warriors 42mm blogposts

 

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A trip to the  wartime  farm … 

Spiv, Spy or the dreaded Man from the Min of Ag? You decide.

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2018/09/02/pound-store-42mm-spy/

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2018/09/02/pound-store-42mm-farm/

Fantastic Beasts, Irregular Miniatures Tommies, Mini Farm in a Box, pound store plastic warriors and junk shop finds. All roughly 40 to 42mm fun.

Crossposted blog posts from my Pound Store Plastic Warriors blogpost by Mark, Man of TIN, 2 September 2018.

Timpo Desert Fort pictures

Using my blog as a scrapbook (kind of what Pinterest was invented for), here are a couple of cheeky screen shots from an online auction site of the Timpo Desert Fort.

Never had this fort or knew it existed. However I still have my childhood Timpo Arabs and Foreign Legion, some of them in need of repair from brittle joints.

I have been slowly collecting the odd beaten up Timpo cowboy buildings for 54mm games.

There are lots more Timpo buildings at this site for some Timpo Nostalgia:

http://www.spanglefish.com/hallmarkstoysoldiers/index.asp?pageid=169845

Blogposted by Mark, Man of TIN, 29 August 2018.

TSAF New Flying Banshee Biplane

++++++ TSAF Toy Soldier Air Force official Air Ministry photograph, Gondal. ++++++

++++++ Passed By Censor for Publication. ++++++

New Flying Banshee FLB Mark I has undertaken successful air trials in the skies over Gondal.

This new Dive Bomber Biplane variant of our previous Biplane is undergoing Air Trials at one of the TSAF field air stations.

+++ TSAF monoplane and new Banshee biplane Dive Bomber variant +++

TSAF Air Ministry Spokesman: “Our new Flying Banshee aircraft Mark I is designed to terrify ground forces or shipping from the air and smash the enemies of Gondal through aerial bombardment.”

TSAF Test Pilot and Squadron Leader “Lucky” Haworth: “Its rugged construction is designed to withstand the rigours of dive bombing targets on land or sea. It has recently completed some successful bombing trails from an undisclosed island air station. It can also operate from small island airstrips or forest clearings.”

This stocky Banshee Biplane variant is a development of our previous dive Bomber monoplane, pictured alongside it.

“The Flying Banshee FLB Mark I is a bit of a powerful beast to fly and has quickly became known to trainee or inexperienced pilots as the FLaB (or Flies like a Brick).”

Details of its armament, experimental wing whistles and performance are not yet being made public.

+++ TSAF Air Ministry communication ENDS +++    +++++++

 

Back to the Man of TIN blog

My regular blog readers might recognise the Moshi airplanes adapted for use with 54mm Toy soldier figures. If H.G. Wells had incorporated the Aerial Menace into his 1913 Little Wars rules, they might have looked a little like these biplanes or monoplanes.

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2018/07/13/tsaf-new-aircraft-delivery

Upper wings were added from  three layers of stiff card, curved edged card scrounged from our household recycling, originally trainer sock packaging.

Stout struts were added using balsa wood, much in the model of the Curtiss Hellcat Dive Bomber variant. This machine will be in use in garden game scenarios so needs the ruggedness. Not elegant but sturdy!

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Two drawing pins hold the dip or angle on the main  top wing  / struts. This part was a bit of a pig!

Masking tape gives a doped canvas feel to the wing and also adds the  fake top flaps. Plenty of super glue used throughout.

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Colour scheme

Currently Test Flight or Interbellum Silver.

Status: Not yet on Active Service. So far we have not applied Gondalese or Gondalian Air Force markings or decals at this test flight stage.

Gondal is one of the North Pacific island Imagi-Nations invented by  the young Emily and Ann Bronte that we have fast forwarded  a Century into the future from its Bronte Juvenilia origins  (set in Napoleonic, late Georgian and Regency  / early Victorian  British Empire  period) through to the interbellum  1920s and 1930s.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gondal_(fictional_country)

Ground Crew

Amongst the growing ground crew you can see some recent conversions or repaints  to become ground crew including LAC Leading Aircraftswoman “Penny” Farthing, a former Britain’s Land Girl or farm worker.

Old childhood plastic Starlux Engineers in Khaki ground crew overalls work on the Banshee biplane. Oiling up the plane, wearing  the stylish new TSAF Gondal Air Ministry issue Blue helmet,  is a Crescent Mine detector figure repaired and rebooted from a broken lead figure donated by Alan at the Duchy of Tradgardland.

Airfield Defence: Britain’s gun, pound store soldier sandbags and mix of old and converted Britain’s and homecast Air Force and  Navy figures,  Gondal being a proud island nation. Barbed wire is from spiral bound notebook wire after recycling a used small notebook.

Slowly building up suitable airfield accessories in  54 mm.

The planes now need a suitable adjustable altitude flight stand for garden gaming use.

The Banshee aircraft name was stimulated by the unlikely names of the Fantasy Name Generator aircraft names

https://www.fantasynamegenerators.com/airplane-names.php

Blogposyed by Mark Man of TIN, 12 August  2018.

 

Flying Tiger Palm Trees

The heat, the sand, the endless sand. Need shade and a cool drink.

We must March or Die …

The Lost Oasis –  Tiger.com palm tree decorations on Heroscape desert hex scenery on my board with Peter Laing 15mm French Foreign Legion figures for scale.

I realise that I have spent lots of time recently repairing Broken Britain’s 54mm toy soldier size figures and somewhat neglected my smaller 15mm Peter Laing figures.

Tiger.com palm tree (cake?) decorations

Painted resin palm  tree decs £1 each.

On my travels “upcountry” (everything above my rural Southwest part of England / the U.K. is “upcountry”) I recently  visited a Flying Tiger store. Fortunately they do not yet do mail order.

https://uk.flyingtiger.com

Flying Tiger  of Copenhagen are European (and worldwide) stores selling strange and wonderful things.

A small six by six by five inch high Opbevaringsbokse or stackable storage box. Useful for storing spare heads and arms etc.  Cost £2.

Three layers of sorting. 

Three blurry Flying Tiger shelfies of things I did not buy but could be useful for gaming:

Shelfie 1: Resisted buying these fake grass toothbrush holders or soap dishes – or fake grass clumps for gaming. £3 each.

Shelfie 2 and 3: A kid’s thick card cottage lunchbox with front down flap. Or a Q-Cottage? Excellent for concealing a Home Guard field gun? £7.

Resisted the roll of fake grass AstroTurf table runner £4

Resisted the wooden plant holder in the shape of 54mm+ picket fences – cheaper than making?

Things I did buy

Magnetic boards £2 each A4 paper size, thin enough to cut and use in reverse as tray bases. It could be mounted on card or wood or tray as an A4 magnetic board to hold figures in place.

Mixing palette £1 each, a fraction of the cost in an art supplies shop.

The rest of the (Naval) gaming related purchases will follow in future blogposts.

Blogposted by Mark, Man of TIN, 5 August 2018.

Below are pictured my testing out of my magnetic sheets – not strong enough for metal 54mm figures mounted on tuppenny and penny pieces (which are slightly magnetic after 1992). A few of my plastic pound store figures I discovered to my surprise that I had based on pre-1992 tuppennies – whoops!

The heady lure of inexpensive things …

The heady lure of Pound Store or inexpensive things …

Wilko Wild Western Express Train

In between planning airplane conversions, I have been repairing Broken Britain’s hollowcast 54mm Indians and casting more Prince August 40mm Cowboys and Indians ready for some garden skirmish games soon.

So adding a Western train set isn’t so surprising …

Vintage 54mm Pound Store Plastic Cowboys and Indians fight over the cargo and caboose of my new Wilko Western Express train.

A snip of a plastic battery operated railway set at £10. Read more at:

https://sidetracked2017blog.wordpress.com/2018/07/14/the-wild-wilko-western-express/

Blogposted by Mark, Man of TIN on 14 / 15 July 2018.

TSAF Toy Soldier Air Force

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Thanks to the quickly passed plastic  craze of Moshi Monsters, I have now acquired two interesting hybrid fighter bombers. Perfect for any Imagi-Nations Air forces.

They were sourced through my family for free or a few pounds online. They are roughly suitable for 54mm or 1:32 figures, arguably the only true scale for H.G. Wells Big “Little Wars”.

This was how they arrived, in their original Moshi Monster Super Moshi character forms of Katsuma and Poppet, little Heli Moshi Monster  which cleverly transforms into part of the propellor and engine.

These planes are hybrids, garishly coloured with their  pink countershading (female Super Moshi Poppet character) and orange paint scheme (Male cat Super Moshi character Katzuma). I recognise bits of different WW2 aircraft moshed, morphed or mashed together to make this generic hybrid.

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Those Super Moshi hybrid aeroplanes in a screen shot of the Super Moshi music video (c/o Youtube / moshimonsters.com)

I especially like the orange bulbous nosed “Shark Teeth” fighter, originally belonging to SuperMoshi Katsuma.

Light machine gun armament  from a pound store / Tim Mee type modern toy plastic soldier in Blue Army uniform.

How our wartime photographer pictured these magnificent men …

I looked through a cheap modern reprint of another old childhood branch library  Blandford favourite, Fighters 1939-1945 by Kenneth Munson, to see if I could find the Moshi Monster plane’s forebears.

Grumman Hellcat? Tomahawk with the shark teeth motif? Bulbous Brewster Buffalo, one of my odder childhood aircraft models?

My naval grandfather may have recognised the type. He served on various Royal Navy aircraft carriers during the Pacific /  SE Asia naval campaigns including the Kamikaze raids on carriers.

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Small snaps in my Royal Navy grandad’s WW2 album that may have been taken by him or the ship’s photographer. Stamped on the Reverse by Censor: “Not Suitable for Transmission Through The Post”.  Written on the back – “Corsair Fighter” (bottom left)  and top left “Port Suez”  with aircraft wings stowed. Note RAF Roundels. 

His photo album shows similar carrier based planes but with fold up wings to stow neatly above and  below decks.

The shark teeth and eye motif of the Curtis P40 Tomahawk

I would be surprised if you recognised the pilot of the orange aircraft but you might have seen part of him on the blog a few months back amongst the metal detectorist’s toy soldier finds.

Here is how he looks now with a charming Dorset Soldiers recast Pilot head. A hint of Dastardly and Muttly here? Maybe a bullet-holed flying scarf might be required.

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Here is how he appeared amongst the toy soldier finds:

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Third from top left, our pilot’s arms and body. Bottom right, this fragment is also a pilot figure, not yet fully restored.

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2018/05/20/recalled-to-the-colours-54mm-metal-detectorists-toy-soldier-finds-restored-to-fighting-condition

Some Ground Crew

The  Johillco running pilots in civilian or technician white flying overalls and also khaki flight suits will eventually be joined by some ground crew. Somewhere I have a mould to homecast more RAF Regiment ground crew and also a Britain’s WAAF amongst others to add to the Toy Soldier Air Force at some point.

Army Red and Army Blue will get one plane each, after some removal of some stickers (the shark teeth, eye and katsuma stickers will stay!) There will also be some paint  adjustments to their desert orange or desert pink camouflage schemes, such as lighter bellies as part of aircraft countershading.

Johillco running Pilot, Britain’s RAF fire crew, modern metal  Britain’s British and US Navy crew (D-Day 1944 commemorative set?), Johillco air crew in donkey jacket, Home cast RAF Regiment, Britain’s RAF Regiment, Johillco running Pilot.
Rear view of the Air Force and Navy figures including handy slung tin hat on the sixth Home-cast figure, who can also be painted a# Home Guard or Army in Khaki.

Interestingly these navy and aircrew figures link into both sides of my family with a Naval grandfather who served on aircraft carriers and an RAF ground crew Grandfather, both of whom had passed away before I was born.

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2016/07/20/fathers-day-raf-firefighter/

Not quite sure how these aircraft will fit into the 54mm outdoor or indoor games. Defending the airbase will be one scenario.  I currently have no rules for aircraft, but I’m sure F.E. Perry’s First and Second Book of Wargaming and Featherstone’s Air Wargames Books may have some clues. Not quite sure what sort of ground spike or stand will be needed yet for a mix of garden and floor / tabletop use.

Little Air Wars?

If I encounter another Moshi aeroplane at good price, the next one gets turned into a “string bag” Biplane, even more suitable for H.G. Wells Edwardian / WW1  era  Little Wars. He missed including military biplanes in Little Wars by a few years.

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One very “Happy Meal” at Macdonalds when The Peanuts Movie came out …

Meanwhile the Aerial Menace of my floor and garden is added to by my favourite (toy) pilot of all time – well worth watching the recent Peanuts movie for the dogfight scenes against the Red Baron.

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A dubious ground crew on this surprising ESCI product, an Italian company not just good for plastic toy soldiers.

Some great 1983 packaging too!

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Love the  machine gun hole damage to the fuselage! Good Grief!

Chocks Away! Bandits at 5 o’clock! Tally Ho! Blam blam blam etc.

and finally … here is the original Super Moshi March music video on YouTube.An

Blog posted by Mark, Man of TIN 6 July 2018.