11/11/2019 at 14:15 #12630328/08/2020 at 14:10 #143052
Hi I wondered if you could help I’ve only just found the 3mm scale sci fi miniature s by vanguard and 08 and really would love to get back into epic it seems perfect as space to game is a problem, could you tell me what material you use to base the figures and the size of the bases I have to say all the painted and based units are stunning. Any help gratefully received28/08/2020 at 15:48 #143056
Sure! The secret to my “success” is as follows:
Bases are 5/8” x 1”, with a 1/4” base label. I use pre-cut 1/8” thick plywood from a laser shop (Litko Game Accessories and Gamecraft Miniatures in the USA are good for this, Litko is a little more straightforward for custom orders.) I sometimes use larger bases for superheavy vehicles, but I usually keep in the 1” or less range if I can.
For infantry, I put my minis on the base first using Loctite Gel Control CA glue, then I lay plain white glue all around them and drop potting sand around, and this conceals the little pedestals they stand on. When that’s dry I prime the whole thing, base and all. Paint the minis, then paint the “gritty” base in earth tones.
Tanks I assemble and prime separately, paint completely, then base.28/08/2020 at 18:58 #143065
Hi and thanks for the quick reply I’m in the UK so will have a look around and see if there’s somewhere here offering similar size bases, I’m glad I found this site it’s really inspiring, only just getting back into historical wargaming, but epic was the game that got me interested and started into gaming I look forward to seeing more of your work. Thanks again for your help 👍28/08/2020 at 22:14 #143075
3mm scale is the new 6mm scale! Seriously the line can always use more support, but is already very extensive. And it really puts the “Epic” in Epic Scale.
You might have some luck sourcing cut acrylic or ply from Gaming Enhancements. Failing that, contact Litko directly. The parts are fairly light and you can source them direct from the USA.28/08/2020 at 22:19 #143076
Etsy May also be a reasonable source, to wit:29/08/2020 at 11:34 #143094
Thanks again, I was just thinking I’d sold all my epic about 15 years ago started looking at stuff on the internet lately showing people still playing it looked at the figures and thought GW never had anything like that then found the vanguard 6mm range and was totally blown away by the detail and poses available, but thought cost wise too expensive to run as a sideline to my Bacchus 6 mm ECW project. Then I saw they did 3 mm I thought it’ll be a blob no details but again totally surprised to see something you can actually make out, so I’ve downloaded the epic Armageddon rules and now I’m trying to decide what packs to send for to try out, as for basing yours look incredible, but I was thinking should I base them as a squad of 10 and possibly tanks in 3s to ease movement ? Or stick with the single base for vehicles and 5 man units ? I’ve seen some based for the Dominion rules and they are 20-30 figs per base and vehicles 3 again looking stunning, not sure if my painting would do them justice, one other thought the way you base was the original style from GW do you have any thoughts or suggestions for a base size for putting them in a line like the last incarnation of epic ? At the moment I’m looking if all goes well to play on an area 3 foot by 2 foot should then be able to play a tidy sized game on a coffee table .30/08/2020 at 15:07 #143150
Hi again first order of figures from vanguard and magister militum who sell the O8 figures here in the UK sent off for and eagerly awaited, also managed to source 300 2mm MDF bases measuring 15 mm by 25mm, so think I’ll be busy for a while. Re your basing of the figures are there enough heavy weapons to do 2 squads of devastators in the mechanised Nova elite company I’ve bought a maniple of assault marines with jet pack and also a maniple of terminator’s30/08/2020 at 15:44 #143152
Mat’s advice is top notch, but I will quibble with him about one thing: DO NOT superglue your figures to the bases. Wood glue or white glue is more than enough to keep them down.
If you ever want to rebase — and if my experience is anything to go by, you will — superglued figures are a royal pain in the ass to pry up, especially in 3mm.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!30/08/2020 at 16:07 #143153
Thanks for the advice, I was planning on using PVA white wood glue as that’s what I use with my 6mm Bacchus ECW figures, 3mm is going to be a new venture for me as really got hooked in again looking at all the epic stuff online lately but have to say the vanguard range beats the old GW stuff by a country mile, even the 3 mm is better, I hope they expand and bring all their 6mm range into the 3mm but I’ll be quite happy plodding along with the orders I made for a while, have to say your a good group of guys really helpful it’s been over 15 years or 1 divorce ago since I games, all my 6mm armies and terrain and my 2mm ACW armies and terrain ended up in the trash long story lol. So in my advancing years I decided to try and get back into the hobby hopefully I’ll finish off my ECW project soon and be able to start gaming and my epicer than epic will be my sideline and take me back to my 2nd childhood lol. Thanks again for the tip 👍30/08/2020 at 17:28 #143155
Any advice you want, Mat and I will be happy to try and supply. I have been dicking around in this scale since around 2006, so I have some practice, at least. Mat and Velvet Mark (the sculptor for Vanguard’s new fantasy line) are better painters than me, however.
There’s a 3mm Facebook group where all the cool kids hang out, too. 😉
My one piece of advice to you would be ALWAYS paint and base as light as you possibly can. Get as much reflected light up into those figs as possible. Even though I know this, I am always going a tad too dark.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!30/08/2020 at 17:29 #143156
Use whatever works for you, definitely. I have never re-based infantry mainly because I base them flush as I described above. However, I have found that even with superglue, if you’re sparing with it, will allow vehicles to be removed pretty easily without damaging them. The various CA glues are good for strong bonds but they shear very easily so a little pressure upwards with a pair of jeweler’s pliers does the trick – wrap them in cloth first, though, or they’ll scratch up your paint work!
Incidentally, I’m in a phase now where I’m getting less interested in the old 40K lore and a little more interested in the Vanguard properties (if you can believe that); this is mainly because it’s so early it has very little that’s canon so I can make up whatever I want. I’m also getting interested in Dirtside II once again, and am working out vehicle designs for that based on the Trojan APC as a Size 4 vehicle and sizing up and down from there. So far it’s a pretty good match.30/08/2020 at 17:31 #143157
I do my infantry stands on standard wargame counters: 1/2 inch x 1/2 inch. Vehicles get what they need. I also think the infantry look better if you clump them together, firing-line style, at the front of the base. The wider base back serves as a decent short hand for which face is towards the enemy. I don’t use labels like Mat does, however.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!30/08/2020 at 20:42 #143164
<p style=”text-align: center;”>Thanks again both there’s a lot of info there for me to take onboard, as for the vases I’ve sourced them to the size Matt uses, 15mm by 25 mm in metric so will work on them, as for undercoating I’m assuming white would be the colour to go for, tho Bacchus the 6 mm manufacturer of my 6mm ECW range advises black undercoat I have followed their advice but painting lighter colours on the black is a nightmare</p>30/08/2020 at 23:51 #143167
I wouldn’t presume to speak for my distinguished colleague in HM’s Most Loyal Opposition, but on this, I believe Thaddeus and I tend to agree: white is better as a primer because it punches bright colors, which you will want to use at this scale to increase contrast. You will find this particularly true for infantry.
Also, if you like basing your infantry in little five-man squads along, let’s say, “traditional” lines, my second secret is: don’t eyeball it. Use a pencil to mark out a “figure five” pattern (and a 1/4″ line for a base label, if you choose) and attach the figures using tweezers to hold them. Will save you a lot of grief, especially if you’re an impossibly self-critical perfectionist like me.31/08/2020 at 01:00 #143173
Thanks again, I’m sat here looking at my ECW Battalia which I painted dark blue on a black wash, I’m 50/50 as to keeping the colour or over painting, perhaps my next batch of ECW figures I’ll undercoat in light grey or white.
I’ll definitely be painting the 3mm a white undercoat, the tip about marking out the base for the figures is a great one and also I hadn’t thought about using tweezers but I will now.
When I did my ACW 2mm from irregular miniatures I also painted them with a black undercoat but it did really work with them, got to admit they took a long time to move all units I never based them and the 5 figure skirmish/ dismounted cavalry were murder to try and pick up , lol but they were good days I’ve always enjoyed the smaller scale figures they allow larger battles, more figures in a unit just wish I’d been able to keep my old stuff but hey ho. Thanks again and hope your projects are running smoothly, I also like your idea of re fighting the Horus heresy as a civil war think that’s a winner31/08/2020 at 01:21 #143174
One more point, what paints do you use for your figures ? When my ECW figs came through I rushed out to my local hobby craft store and bought a mix of tamiya and humbrol acrylics the results have been mixed I have recently tried army painter again with mixed results and was given artist tube acrylics I’ve looked at the GW paints but it hurts to look at their prices31/08/2020 at 02:32 #143175
My preference is for a self-etching spray primer like Krylon or Rust-O-Leum as a primer, Reaper Acrylics as base, midcoat and highlights, and Citadel washes, which I only use very sparingly at 3mm scale.
What Chapters are you thinking of painting? I can recommend a pretty slim starter set of Reaper paints; they manufacture them in sets of three so that you get coordinated base, midcoat and highlight colors that all work together. That’s the reason I like them – easy to work with, not as much mixing. But don’t go whole hog to start with, just gradually build up your color set from a few starters.
For a force of Blood Angels, for example, I would recommend the following as a basic list:
Rustoleum 2X Cover Flat White Universal Primer
Reaper Deep Red (or Dragon Red)
Reaper Blood Red
Reaper Fire Red
Reaper Clear Red
Reaper Fire Orange
Reaper Pure Black
Reaper Pure White
Reaper Midnight Blue
Reaper Shadowed Steel
Reaper Flow Improver
Citadel Nuln Oil
Spray prime your miniature – do it in two light coats. Prime once, thinly, then prime again ten minutes later, and allow to dry. Aim for about 50-60% relative humidity when you spray. Let it dry a full 24 hours before you paint.
Basecoat the figure with a mix of five parts Deep Red or Dragon Red to one part Flow Improver. This is a homemade version of the “Contrast Paint” you’ve heard so much about, but you have more control over how you mix it. A 5:1 ratio gives you a good, thinnish mix that will cover your figure very well. This is the deep base coat, and will make all your shadows nice and dark.
Mid-coat using Blood Red. Only add a very little amount of water to get the paint flowing – don’t “thin it out” like they “pros” say, or it’ll go everywhere. What you want is it to be smooth, not watery. Apply it to the main areas of the miniature, but try to pick out the panels and high spots, don’t let it run into the cracks and crevices, to preserve the shadows and relief. Fortunately the Vanguard 3mm minis are great for this – tons of detail and it’s in very deep cut relief, so easy to paint that way. I like a #1 watercolor brush for this – you can get them pretty cheap in bulk and replace them when the tip blunts. Keep them clean and snap them sharp after every use and they’ll last a good amount of time.
Highlight using Fire Red. This is just hitting the highest points, real highlights. Think of this as the “new” paint, and the bits that show through of the base and mid coats will read like older paint that is worn and dirty.
Add Clear Red on top of this. This is just pigment in binder with no base, so it will not have much color on its own but will enhance the reds below and blend them together. You’ll notice this puts a red-orange cast on the whole figure. There are a whole spectrum of Clear Colors that are good for this.
Then hit the edges with Fire Orange. This defines the very sharpest edges and gives the whole figure a nice contrast.
Finally, paint any plain metallics with Shadowed Steel. This is a very thick paint and needs water to be smoothed down or it’ll stick like gobs of glue. Use it sparingly. I also use it for the treads on my tanks.
Then treat the metal parts with Nuln Oil, to deaden the shine and give them a nicely worn, greasy look. Treads work particularly well with this technique.
Any black insignia can go on with Pure Black, now, and I like to then go over the black bits with Midnight Blue, which gives it a bit of depth. White insignia I just paint on as is in Pure White.
Base and you’re done.
This is an example of a Blood Angels unit I did at 6mm scale using this technique, but it works equally well for 3mm scale, I might argue better.
This is based on a Blood Angels-style paint job but can be modified for any color scheme, the techniques remain the same: Prime, Base Coat at 5:1, Mid Coat, Highlight, Clearcoat, Second Highlight, Metal, Insignia. Seems like a lot but it gets to be a bit of a rush after a while.
Also, be forewarned that, unlike what you see in video tutorials online, there is ALWAYS a point at which, using any multi-layer blending technique like this, the miniature will look like an unrecoverable mess, and you’ll think you did something wrong. Push forward! It has to pass that threshold to get to finished. It will seem discouraging for a moment, but you’ll see the parts come together at the end, and that will be the really rewarding part. Plus, you’ll get used to seeing mistakes as they happen, because they’ll actually happen in slow motion as it were, between layers, and you’ll have the next layer to blend out the little blemishes and errors left over from the last one, or you can go back with a bit of the previous layer’s color to build up parts a little further if they’re not reading, etc. In the end, this makes a nice-looking figure easier to do, because no one stroke is going to wreck them for you, as can happen with more delicate, stroke-by-stroke techniques.31/08/2020 at 10:25 #143197
Omg those figures are totally amazing, I’m a slap and dab painter, nowhere near your standards, you have me looking at my Bacchus 6mm figs and weeping I really haven’t done them justice.
But I have to accept my limitations lol, the advice is frightening but I will try it out, as for a force I was planning on going with the Dark Angels they were my chapter of choice in days gone by, and bulk out the force then with Guard, I have sent for a pack of not leman Russ, and not Basilisk to see what they’re like scale wise oh and also the not chimmera and the badger and I think butcher battle suits I was hoping they could be my dreadnoughts .
By the way where did you source the unit strips, details,you stick on your bases they look neat .31/08/2020 at 14:06 #143227
If you mean the base labels I use, those I draw myself in Adobe Illustrator and print out with a color laser printer. I’m doing something similar with vehicle cards for my Nowhere-Near Official Dirtside II stats for the Vanguard line. I always like to add my own fluff to things to get me into the spirit of it.31/08/2020 at 19:21 #143243
A man of many talents, I’m a bit of a luddite when it comes to computers but I have managed to source order counters for epic, is overwatch, march, and so on, I’m going to have to start making blast markers , plus think about a gaming board, have you any thoughts on gaming mats ?31/08/2020 at 20:32 #14326131/08/2020 at 22:58 #143264
How would I contact your colleague HMs Most Loyal Opposition ? Obviously I’d like eventually make modular terrain but to get up and running quickly I’ve been thinking of gaming mats was wondering what people’s experiences of these has been I’ve heard there’s a fleece one wondered if it’s any good or the mouse mat materials01/09/2020 at 00:10 #14326801/09/2020 at 03:52 #143272
[Blush] Not really. I have just been doing it longer.
Here’s my blog with various attempts, none of them particularly recent:
And the three mm fantasy thread here has some of my more recent experiments.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!01/09/2020 at 10:03 #143288
<p style=”text-align: center;”>I’m in the presence of true artists here with the two of you , I’ve just seen 2 of Thaddeus s terrain and blown away with both, the dessert world was first really stunning and the second one was also awesome, they would be my ideals, but not sure I’d have the time or patience to work on it, plus also space is limited for storage of the finished items, but definitely has given me some ideas thanks again both of you.</p>01/09/2020 at 18:49 #143323
Thaddeus your terrain is absolutely amazing, I really like the idea of the interlocking terrain.
So was it a case of unpinning the canvas from the frame and marking out the shape of the interlocking tile and then just pin it on ? Would it work with painting and flocking the tiles themselves ?02/09/2020 at 01:55 #143338
I flocked the interlocking yoga mats, then cut out useful terrain bits from the canvas frames and pinned them onto the mats. You need to use a silicon adhesive or other kind of glue that won’t shrink when flocking the mats.
Later, I flocked a drop cloth and draped that over the mats, then pinned terrain on it.
Both solutions worked well and looked great, but were a bear to set up and take down.
So now I am experimenting with my simple, non-flocked magnetic terrain.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!02/09/2020 at 01:59 #143339
This is the back of a black board, painted with iron-doped resin paint, then painted over. The terrain is built on top of magnetic rubber strips. The units are likewise magnetically based. The whole thing can be turned at a 45 degree angle with nothing moving out of place. At 90 degrees, only the really big and heavy metal buildings fall: everything else stays put.
Set up and take down is simplicity itself. Furthermore, terrain bits can easily be draped and layered on top of each other. The idea is to hang the blackboard on the office wall for messages and to do lists when I am not using it.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!02/09/2020 at 08:47 #143343ThomastonParticipant
I’m gonna poke my head in a bit, all uninvited like.
About primer color, I’ve used black, white and gray and they all have their advantages and disadvantages, it depends on your painting style.
White benefits from thinner paint for a more display quality.
Black suits block painting and gaming quality. You can get away with a lot and get a passible finish.
Gray is good a good middle ground for me, can’t really think of any advantages though. I use hycote, a cheap 2 pack could be found on Amazo UK.
Paint. Any range of paints for miniatures would do. I stay away from Tamiya and other scale model range because they’re sometimes too thin and meant for airbrush. I don’t suggest washing 3mm though, it’s a dark art I stay away from.
Tired is enough.02/09/2020 at 10:30 #143349
Hi there Thaddeus and thanks again, so far sourcing a reasonable priced canvas is proving problematic all the cheap ones I’ve found are sold out guess everyone is becoming an artistic in lockdown lol.
A question on the yoga mats, I found a few things online about making interlocking terrain pieces with them but everyone I’ve read has glued them to MDF boards just wanted your take on that ? Are they flimsy do they bend that much ? The blackboard painted and magnetic scenery is again out of this world you have a fine talent there. I’m guessing that the figures were 3mm in the shot couldn’t really make them out clearly, also loved looking at your ACW, and other figs on your site your painting is as good as your terrain thanks for all the help and advice .02/09/2020 at 10:40 #143350
Hi Thomaston any help re painting, or terrain ideas is gratefully received.
The style of painting I’ve been doing on my Bacchus 6 mm ECW has been black undercoat and blocking in the colours I’ve just been having a bit of a mare with some colours not taking and needing a 2nd and sometimes a third coat, and the ranges of paints I have so far some are good and cover well while others no matter how hard or how long you shake them are like water when I apply them.
I’ve been out of the hobby for 15+ years so it’s been slow going and a hell of a learning curve these guys 3mm figures leave my 6mm sitting in shame, but they do the job for me.
Thanks for the tips 👍 and like I said any advice will never be turned away.02/09/2020 at 14:22 #14335802/09/2020 at 17:59 #143382
True enough Mr Average, magister militum e mailed yesterday saying order has been posted, and vanguard just e mailed now saying order complete so hopefully not long now and I can try experimenting and bases should be arriving tomorrow02/09/2020 at 18:13 #14338302/09/2020 at 18:48 #143384
I’ll freely admit I’m nowhere near your or Thaddeus s abilities, as long as they seem ok to me I’ll be happy and I will try to get a picture up once I have a unit or 2 done.
Thanks again all for the advice and hope all your projects are running smoothly02/09/2020 at 19:11 #143385ThomastonParticipant
Foam mat do bend but it’s easy to flatten as long as you don’t store them in a way that forces it. For terrain I’d say start with what you have. A sheet of felt ans some books or a pillow should be enough and work from there. Better to get a few stands done so you can get an idea on how hig the board should be.
Tired is enough.02/09/2020 at 22:48 #143405
Hi there Thaddeus and thanks again, so far sourcing a reasonable priced canvas is proving problematic all the cheap ones I’ve found are sold out guess everyone is becoming an artistic in lockdown lol. A question on the yoga mats, I found a few things online about making interlocking terrain pieces with them but everyone I’ve read has glued them to MDF boards just wanted your take on that ? Are they flimsy do they bend that much ? The blackboard painted and magnetic scenery is again out of this world you have a fine talent there. I’m guessing that the figures were 3mm in the shot couldn’t really make them out clearly, also loved looking at your ACW, and other figs on your site your painting is as good as your terrain thanks for all the help and advice .
The Yoga mats I have are quite thick and, while they bend, it is not radically so. They’re 15-20mm thick, IIRC. They can warp if you use a glue or sealant the shrinks when it dries, but MDF will likewise warp. The mats I have are 1 meter by 1 meter and very thick, so they need no extra weight or stiffening.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!02/09/2020 at 22:49 #143406
Thanks for the compliments! Yes, they are all 3mm in those pictures or 6mm serving as 3mm monsters.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!02/09/2020 at 23:03 #143407
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