Archive for February, 2014

More silence from myself for months when there’s been a lot of activity behind the scenes. I’ve been very busy collecting and building a 2000pt C09 pre-slotta Dark Elf army. I’ll be going into the details of that particular army in another blog post once I’ve taken some photos. Instead I’m going to describe how I built my 2000pt Oldhammer Dwarf army for £69.

Many years ago I used to really hate Dwarves. I think this hatred came from my Undead spending most of their games bouncing off them and generally being sent back to the grave all too switfly. Over time I started to like the idea of having my own army of the stubborn little sods but not quite enough to go the whole hog and collect classic slotta Citadel/Marauder Dwarves mainly due to the cost. So, one wet and windy evening I started to flick through Warhammer Armies and work out how I could build an army as cheaply as possible.

I’ve been aware of the old Grenadier Miniatures “Fantasy Warriors” models since they came with the game of the same name. I was also aware that EM4 Miniatures have been selling them for a number of years for a staggeringly cheap 21p per model or 16p each when ordered in bags of 50. They only come in three sculpts armed with a two handed axe, spear or crossbow. I quite like my rank and file to be in the same pose so the limited sculpts in the range doesn’t bother me, in fact it’ll make them quicker to paint!

I wanted to pad the army out a bit with metal unit champions, leaders, standard bearers and so on. I could spend my time converting the plastics up but, instead, I used metal models for this from the Grenadier “Fantasy Warriors” range. Contrary to what people think on ebay this range is not out of production and can be bought directly from Mirliton. I’ll be honest here I was a bit nervous about ordering from Mirliton. Not because of the company, who I am sure are excellent, but because I’d heard a number of negative stories about the Italian postal system losing parcels. I know the same can be said about any postal service but I decided to investigate other companies who would either import the models for me, so at least if they got lost in the system I could argue with a British company, or I would use a company that already sold the models directly. This lead me to ordering models from Forlorn Hope Games who have sell a reasonable amount of the Fantasy Warriors range. It’s a shame that it’s not the complete range but what they do have is very good and a great price. Character models for £1.50 each? Yes please! 🙂 Even better than that I ordered the models in the afternoon and had them in my grubby mits the following morning. Talk about fantastic service! I will definitely be ordering from them again.

So what did I end up with?

From EM4

50x Dwarves with crossbows £7.70 (I only meant to order 25 but I ordered the large pack by mistake. Oops!)
50x Dwarves with spears £7.70
25x Dwarves with axes £5.25
150x Shields £3.06

From Forlorn Hope Games

3x Standard bearers £5.40
1x Leader issuing orders £1.50
1x Leader with hammer £1.50
1x Large axe held over head £1.50
1x Dwarf Generals War Council £12

For a grand total of £45 I got two large units of crossbows, one unit of Hammerers (axes, these will be converted), two units of warriors, various heros, and a wizard. Without war machines that can easily reach 1500pts. Add magic items, magic standards etc and you’re getting very close to 2000pts. All that for a just £45!

As a last minute decision I did splurge £20 out on Dwarf Giant Cannon from EM4 Miniatures because I really like the model and it’s HUGE! If I’d been sensible I could’ve bought cannons from the Kingdom of Men range at £4.50 a pop from Forlorn Hope Games, which I probably will do. Even so, with the Giant Cannon I’m at £65 which is still cheap. I nabbed an Army Standard Bearer for £4 on ebay which, while over the odds, means that I don’t have to spend £10 on figures I don’t need just to buy one figure.

The metal models I got from both Forlorn Hope Games and EM4 Miniatures were nicely cast but both had flash on them. It’s not a big deal but I’m so used to buying metal models with no flash on them it was a bit of a surprise, moreso given that the EM4 Miniatures Future Skirmish metals I own have never had any flash on them.

Ok, so what are the plastic figures like? The first thing that surprised me about the plastic models is that they might not look like much on the EM4 Miniatures website but these models are easily on a par, if not better, than the GW “Battle for Skull Pass” monopose Dwarves in terms of detail. The plastic is similar and their poses are much better than those from “Battle for Skull Pass” which look a bit odd imo. Some of the models had a small hole in them that can be easily green stuffed and all of the models had flash around them that can be quickly removed with a sharp knife.

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The integral figure bases are quite large and for Warhammer they need to be removed so that the figures can be mounted on 20mm bases. I was dreading this but with some decent clippers this was actually less daunting than I was expecting and once I got a bit of a rhythm going I could remove the base of a figure about every twenty seconds. I did end up with some impressive blisters once I’d clipped 125 of them though! Note to self: wear gloves next time.

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All of the plastic models feature a plug on their back  that’s most likely the injection point of the plastic into the mold:

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It is possible to buy plastic shields from EM4 Miniatures that can be used to cover these plugs but as I wanted my Dwarves with spears to be holding a shield in their left hand I quickly whittled the plug away:

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The crossbows on the Dwarves with crossbows (duh!) aren’t great because the arms on them are rediculously small. A quick trip to my bits box and they were easily turned into decent looking crossbows by chopping off the original arms off the crossbows and replacing them with crossbow arms snipped from 6th edition GW plastic Dark Elf crossbows:

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A regiment of ten crossbow armed Dwarves:

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All they need now is a bit of greenstuff on their bases and some paint.

I still need to remove the flash from all of the models, get them based up and undercoated. Realistically, this will take me a couple of days and after that I’ll start to paint them.  Once that’s done I’ll add a unit of Clansmen using metal models from Forlorn Hope Games along with buying a couple of cannons from their Kingdom of Men range.

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