Sunday, 29 January 2017

Another Paper Ships Gun for The Budding Scratch Builder .....designed & built by BB

These Are Toy Guns

This design is aimed at those in the hobby that get a kick out of making their very own stuff to suit their needs,and fancy. Imagination is the first key to any new thing made. Over the past few weeks I`ve seen war gamers boats that were scratch built by them but that had no guns,so I formulated the cheapest way possible ever to make ships guns from Paper. Yes a much better looking toy cannon the likes of Hornblower's crew would love to spark off a broadside at any enemy in sight.


There are 6 strips of paper not included in the photograph, because being so tiny they would just curl up. Winding the small strip around a cocktail stick  forms a plug for the back end of the gun.

When making more than one ships cannon all the measurements of the paper strips must be the same.
Mine were as set out bellow.
I used white PVA Glue!
3-1/4 inch x 1/1/4 inch turned around and around on the brush made the main tube up.
2 - 1/4 inch x 1 - 1/4 inch Winding a strip of paper  around and around from the back end inwards formed the rest of the main tube.
All this made a reasonable foundation for the winding on of the smaller strips.
The front strip of paper was stuck into place a pen point tip away from that end.
That gave a good pattern of design to that open end.
The back end plug with point cut off and  glued up for purpose was pushed into the back end, but stopped short of  where the cock-tail stick is pushed through and out of the other side.
Later when the glue had set good and hard the pivot point cocktail stick was pushed through after a metal pin had made its way entirely through the tube,and a sharp pointed craft blade had widened out those two holes.

The cocktail sticks are left complete to aid later painting.
The tiny brush used,the paper strips and cocktail sticks needed to make one cannon up.
Most model making buffs have this in the home.

Below the cannon seen in the raw which gives a better look at this stage in the fun.

                                       Stuck in row upon row into waste Polystyrene

Projects are for having fun, and this one cost practically nothing at all, except for a little bit of time.
More results will be posted later. Entirely designed by little me,for the likes of you. BB

38 X 18 pdr Guns,all primed for a metal dry brush.

More Next Time. BB

Saturday, 28 January 2017

Changing the Guard Windsor(Extended), April10, 2015, Band of the Coldstr...

Just needed to see the Band set up, of which figures go where for my AIRFIX BAND, that I am painting in toy town style.

The Band of the Welsh Guards, Changing the Guard at Windsor - 18th Augus...

Yes wanting to see were each brass section goes in a Band,is good research to do.


I was 11 years old in 1960,when HO OO Railway Scale marching figures first appeared.           

For the Group Build on, `Benno`s Figure Forum`,this year I am going to paint some of these tiny to the eye things up. Perhaps even a full set for The Parade,of marching figures. Not Action Poses. These  Guards figures have no faces ,and hands are blobs with rifles just plastic sticks showing no detail what so ever,but these are the first ever toy figures produced by AIRFIX in HO OO Railway Scale,and are indeed the last.They are the beginning of Toy Town History as I often term it.                                                                                                                  

Where other scales have produced costly Military Bands,the smaller  scales have not,so there are no bands of this type after 1960,which is, a full stop!  To be sure on the Benno`s Figure Forum.

                                                   THE GUARDS CHEER THE QUEEN

The first thing to do is opening the boxes, and then review the troops available. I thought it best to share this information because it a fact that 50 odd year-old figures often suffer from age. ( As indeed we do too,and in reality, those ultraviolet light  patterns of which there are many are in a process of slowly killing us.)

                                         THE DREADED PLASTIC  FATIGUE STRIKES!

Test the plastic this way,bend the base slightly using your finger and thumb,and if the legs snap and crumble away like dried up tooth paste ,that is plastic fatigue! These figures were bought loose in a plastic bag on E Bay, a few years ago and there they stayed until the other day. So the boxed sets are the best and most expensive way of obtaining them to try and avoid this breakdown of the plastic. However one buys and take the chance that they will be OK.

However Every Cloud Has A Silver Lining, as the old saying goes, so I simply opened up other boxes in my vast Collection of Toy Figures. Which are perfectly OK! The broken ones I left on the table, and the colour comparison of the yellow figures can be noticed.  The Colour Party where produced in a nice red, which meant heads including face, hands, trousers, and rifle stick and base only needs painting. Basic colour only need apply here, because like skittles there is no detail on them at all.
Below All Are Fit For Muster

A Beginning To An End

It was early morning and winter time 28/01/1960,and the The Guards 1st and 3rd  Lt Companies were leaving their barracks on Barrack Street in Norwich. The road void of all traffic welcomed the hob nailed boots of spit and polish for there were none better in Norwich that was for sure. Lead out by their overly keen Brass Band, they filed out past the old iron gates with its two  Sentry Posts.The lights were still on in the Officers Quarters as the marched past.                                                          

                      This will wake up all the sleepy heads that have no want of it that is for sure.

As the 1st Foot & Mouth, march away into toy town history, they bring this part to a funny ending it is hoped.I`ll paint a few up for samples and show them later. BB

Saturday, 21 January 2017

Plumber Flax A Beano Boy Preparation Process Shown by BB

Quite often things do not go according to plan, and so the preparation plan must be changed slightly. All Scratch Builders, know this fact. Using stuff for other use`s is the major preoccupation while  trying to create something unique in the world of Arts & Crafts.

                                                   THE PLUMBERS FLAX

I bought several knots of Plumbers Flax on E Bay,at £3.50 each,and they stunk to high heavens of a Cats PPPPPPPPeeeeeeeLike Smell. Mrs B,kindly placed them all in a pillowcase and into the washing machine they all went.                                                                                                             

Warning Always Put This Stuff In A Pillow Case If Using A Washing Machine!                                                                                                           
Later when that awful Scent that would`ve attracted perhaps many a Beaver Lumberjack, was well and goodness me gone, they dried out quickly without smell placed upon a  radiator!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        

They looked pretty rough and ruined,but all was or is not lost

A wire brush would be way to destructive so I opted for using an old Fork. In years gone by each of my Step-Sons and MrsB,and I,had our own coloured knives forks and spoons. The one seen above is one of mine.They are no longer used as those Boys have long left the Nest.

The object exercise was one to rake out a good size section at a time.

The simple idea resurrected a sure fired few sections that will come in thrashing handy for Thatching Roofs.

The fine soft to the touch lengths will be simplistic splendid to work with, and the fine fluffed up stuff raked out will be used as well for I chuck nothing away.
This is ideal material to use for Thatching scratch-built cottage roofs. One lays it in rows each overlapping the other below and a raised ridge finishes the job by capping over the top on both sides.(A future planed Tutorial will follow later.)

I realise that many might buy that hairy string and cut bits off,but I find it far to thick and stiff for a Hayed on top roof effect for an Asterix cottage of share eccentric oddity.

So that is my Preparation Process finished. Goody! Goody!

My Haystack!

The paper built hay wagon sets the scale in the photograph. There was a ladder too, but it has long gone missing. 

 See you later,I`m in most days.  BB

Monday, 16 January 2017

The Dry Run with Fred & MayBell........ Written and Presented by BB

Mondays light dawned and played its usual game of looking through the windows of the quiet little houses as  if it was playing hide and seek looking for giggling children,and I suppose it has always been its case to replace a yawn with the first smile of a new busy day, especially as Fiddle Wood awakes from its silent slumber.     Smiling down upon an odd rooftop upon a certain craft table it the Sun, eyed the scene with keenness because it was a wonderment to it,and even more so as toy figures once more began their active  role of play.

It was a simple scene set out  before it. It was another new toy,and the Sun smiled away active in its plotted out universal course upon that morning thinking ` Mrs B`s and BB`s ,house is filling up.' 

Fred is still upon his ski`s,he has now worn them for many a posting and is most reluctant to give them up in spite of the new story lines I have planed for him and MayBell.O`,well he is welcome to wear them here and now I suppose.                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

The first cup of hot Tea arrived, as Fred and MayBell began to wind up their imaginations concerning the next  stage in this their boldest adventure yet episode. The Scratch-Build!
There were  joyful plastic fellows rather bright in their spitted out moulding machine colours of over 50 years.They have been,"it must be said,"Very patient awaiting their time for bold clean shiny painting colours to be brushed upon them. Very much, Yes indeed."

Due to the Pals, bright efforts,there are two houses in one construction, and these happy go lucky figures were well glad to be out of the wooden toy box.                                                              

"It`s very roomy! When can I move in?"

"It will quite a while yet." said MayBell, and Fred agreed with his pal. "Floors and Chimney are to be added and then it will be down to BB,who moves in." Fred declared. As he inspected the timbers.
"Yes a little bit to trim off along the bottom will settle these two nicely into place MayBell."

On the other side of the build,other bright coloured figures have been inspecting the first long a waited for affordable housing scheme.There`s even terrible music that blights everyone ears with such a bashing passion. What a Din! Everyone agreed.

As Fred & MayBell,assure them that there will be more houses springing up into an odd random   fashion they are quite pleased that all the toy figures will eventually be homed. " Remember Fred,BB,might not let us build another two into one?"____"That`s very true MayBell,but what about a three into one Build?"________ " We will have to see Fred."

While taking time out for a walk of ponderous over thinking, ideas flow out between these two thick and fast,and we do well to consider after all thoughts come like that by the hundreds each and every day.
"It is very nice Fred,and I can just picture this within a tiny garden setting of beautiful planting."
"Yes perhaps so MayBell , but first a Chimney needs designing and cutting into shape."

Upon the table three strangers have appeared and they are standing upon a flight of stone steps. MayBell thinks it very odd that they remain in place as if fixed there by blu tac. "Fred,who are these mysterious guys standing there as if deep rooted to their spot?" She asked.

Even after moving the stone steps aside by several nudges, the three stranger appeared not to move or indeed budge by as much as 1mm. "Yes,it`s them MayBell, Romans."___ " Romans,what are Romans doing here Fred?"____ "Well MayBell,BB has gone and painted these three up and they appear to be guarding those steps."___ "Tell e`m ta shove off Fred?"____" Now,Now,MayBell, they show no conkering attitude at play here, and so that would be out of the question, After all it was BB,that put them here."___ "But why?"____ "Well I guess where there`s Gaul`s there must be Romans,MayBell."

Here is the other side showing the other house. Yes back to back housing had arrived in a big way along with the three Romans who are now way out of steps if you get my drift? All the Asterix figures agreed a nice warm comfy home far outweighed the compacted toy box that they had grown used to. I guess even toy figures have need of privacy at odd times throughout their strange magical days. Upon reading this Fred,asks a question." How do toy figures have magical days MayBell?"
" Well Fred,I believe it to be through story telling."____" Yes of course you are right MayBell,where would we two be without BB`s story telling?"____ " In the toy box Fred."

The inspection continues as the two friends wonder around this odd place,that seemed to have fell up rather than ever having been built up and Fred and MayBell both agreed this truly was a magical place where dreams can come true with a little bit of light finger tapping upon a certain keyboard.
There is an odious wet smell of Fish that lingers about this place.However it is of no concern to Fred,as he is short of ears by two.While unfortunately MayBell, is aware of it in spite of the fact that she is also earless herself.    It is a wonderment I suppose?                                                                                                                                                                                   

"This is a dry run", Fred declared as MayBell pushed home the last metal pin into place. "There that will hold it Fred."_____" Yes to be sure,it will", he happily agreed. And with that the two of them walk off the page and onto another yet to be written of.                                                                      

While oddly I can presently smell Fish,I think the shared simplicity of back to back works well, it saves an awful lot of work,and the little alien pepper pot Fred, along with MayBell have certainly pulled it off with their joint topic. They actually get Fan Mail,and all I get are the things I buy mail.

 I painted these three period piece Romans  a few weeks ago,and the oddest thing was trying to remember how I`d painted the rest of the army up. I had not touched  a brush for figure painting in 9 months due to much illness in 2016.

                                 And so with the last picture now on, I take my leave.
                                 We one and all thank you for reading.  BB

Sunday, 15 January 2017

The Tiny Ships Paper Guns A Make Do Project by BB

A project you will not find on You Tube.

It began with a thought,and then a question that I asked myself,`How hard would it be to make a 1/72 scale Toy Gun for a scratch-built boat I`d recently viewed in a topic that was manned by Pirates but was completely void of guns'? In my imagination,it was a Pirate vessel sailing the sea`s around the Caribbean islands on the lookout for Spanish & Portuguese treasure ships to plunder. Finally the Penny Dropped. "Yes that might work",i said to myself. So looking for stuff that people the world over have in their homes.What I needed was 5 strips of paper cut from an A4 size sheet of paper,a cotton bud,a metal pin,a cocktail stick,some PVA Glue and a small size artists brush.A cheap brush with a thin tapered round handle.

Long ago I made chimney pots for my little cottages that I made,and I used a brush handle to wind the paper around to form what were painted up as clay pots. So likewise in order to help those who scratch build stuff, the plan was to produce a short barrelled 32 and a 36 pounder cannon for a well armed to the teeth Pirate boat. This is how it formulated itself for the first time ever,and from the cheapest materials too. Paper is the cheapest thing ever one could or would wish to use.

One long strip was marked out wider than the rest because this would produce the barrel of the gun. Three more smaller widths were also marked out one being wider than the other two. All were cut out.So the winding around the brush handle began.

First a dry run to form the curve around the handle,then glue was brushed on the edge just enough to make it stick to the paper and not the handle. If it goes on the handle it will not come off at all.

The light was very dull upon this winters day,and it saw me working up near a window that overlooked part of the garden.

Like rolling a rather wet fag!

Yes it was OK to proceed, with more glue and another few winds. I then checked it would move freely around the handle,and yes it did.

So gradually without a dire need to rush I carried on.
Snipping off time

Soon it was time to cut the waste off and the edge was stuck down. 

A light rolling on a flat surface  finished this part. How many of you can remember when you rolled out that little piece of dough when you were a young child? They certainly were Magical Days!

There it is off the brush the wider end needed a little snip off with the scissors. It kinda looks rough at this stage ,but after all one must have a before and after to show.

A few minutes later,the After!

The tube was placed back upon the brush handle and the three smaller strips were wound on and around the barrel in the same way as it was formed, and where can be viewed in the picture. A wider piece of paper strip was also added at the far end.___ It was now taken off again and reversed onto the brush handle again. With a good dip in the glue the cotton bud was then pushed into the wide open back end.                                                                                                                                         

Rethinking upon this matter I could use blu tac to create the back end or modelling air-drying clay. However I wanted to use the cheapest possible method and a tiny cotton bud does                                work.                                                                                                                                                           

Glue was brushed onto the cotton bud and cotton wool already pulled off the other end was wound around the stuck in end,and with wet finger and thumb  the bud was loosely gripped. and the whole piece turned around a few times using the other hand. Yes a little bit of spit was applied to smooth this stage of the work. The stem was cut off,and what was left of the cotton wool off the other end was glued into the wide open tiny hole and wet with glue it was push well into it and it also formed the nob.                                                                                                                              

Holding the formed nob in my palm while turning it flattened the nod slightly to form its finished planed design. It is now looking like a toy,a bronze cast ships Gun, but it needs pivots fixed to it in order to mount the thing.  All fell into place as I worked my way through this tiny build. When dry a pin was pushed into the side of the gun and then pushed right through it while keeping it level. I made sure the line formed at the cutting off point to each piece of paper would be on the underneath part of the gun. All cutting off was carried out on this same side to help give a tidy finish to this bronze cast gun.

The pin hole was slightly widend by using a craft knife with a sharp point,and then a cock-tail stick was pushed right through the barrel and out of the other side.So this problem of pivots  was simply solved. In the photograph above it shows the patterns that formed the gun mount all ready to cut out. What was now needed was a way to cut out the four caster wheels,which was a sort of mind bender. A puzzlement indeed,but solved simple by winding thin strips of paper around a cock-tail stick until the required wheel size was achieved. This also solved the problem of having the wheels fixed into place on an axial.

A simple mock-up to enliven imaginations. The pivots will be cut to size later when the width of the bottom work aligns up just fine.                                                                                                             

The Oak Gun Mount is in the early stage of development and four of the caster wheels are shown above.

With undercoat on it looks kind of old already as if salvaged from the parent ship.
But Bah! Humbug! There`s no Treasure to speak of.
The wooden sticks will be cut to correct size when all lines up with the bottom.

The awkward mistakes I made is the process of self teaching. The thing is to soldier on after learning from it. One must be prepared with a plan B,C,D or whatever. So I have shown the cronic mistakes in order to achieve a contrast with the end result.

I made two short barrelled bronze guns,but due to paper fluff on this first gun platform I dulled this picture to lesson the untidy distraction of it down. As new plans for a stronger gun platform is being drawn up with a stronger and simpler design pattern to it,so the mounted guns will be shown later. Before then I would like to mention a long lost mysterious ship.

                                                          The Lost Ship & Shipwright

The American Cival War Rages On and On,and for some Great Expectations are due to come.

The story of the bronze guns salvaged from the CSS YOBONAEB. A fast paddle steamer and according to her papers as having been French built,but then sailed to G Britain, and  fitted out with short barrelled 32 and 36 Pounders at the Tower of London. (Many a ship were likewise armed at this medieval place of power.) It being a well armed Blockade Runner,proved very successful running Official Mail, Gold, millions of firing caps,thousands of muskets and rifles to add the Southern Cause.  It was sunk off the coast of Normandy in the early Spring of 1863,by two US Federal Ships,that saw it burn,blow up and sink. ( Declared Pirate by the Federal Government.)  Those American frigates, were in turn chased by the British Navy halfway across the Atlantic. The YOBONAEB, was discovered in 1965,but the site was kept secret until it was salvaged in 1995, and its bronze guns were raised as indeed was 17 Million Pounds worth of Gold.

The name of the Mysterious Shipwright that built this blockade runner was recently discovered by simply reversing the ships  name.
 It was such a revelation causing quite a stir in the annals of English literature.

The Gun Mount

It needs a polish up and wheels but the it is possible now to mount the guns,and add a wedge to level each of the guns.

 The pivot point lugs have been cut to fit each  wooden mount.

More toy Guns are being made and I decided to down size the gun mount by 4mm in height,then fix the  wheels attached to the axial.

Enough Ammo for an  Armada

Steel Shotgun Ammo, a very large bag for £7.00 Perfect size for all my cannon.In Teddy Bear Shops,they weight  down playfull Bears with this stainless steel stuff.      

Perhaps I`ll see you guys again real soon with more results.Thanks for stopping by. BB