Saturday, February 23, 2013

A dip with Viking archers

There's some debate among Saga players on whether levy archers are a wise choice for the Viking warband.    I figure they can screen my lads as they madly rush crossbow, javelin or archer-armed foe. Even if I don't use levy archers regularly with this warband, just having them painted up gives me the chance to mix things up a bit.

My go-to method in 15mm is to block paint, wash with Devlon Mud and highlight to finish.  Sadly, I've used up all my Mud.  Agrax Earthshade is supposed to be the new Devlan Mud but it isn't.  I recently tried mixing up my own washes but I can't quite match the color/shading of Devlon Mud. I've seen the great work many of you do with Army Painter Strong Tone dip so I figured I'd give it a go.
Boring!  

$29 for a tin-is there a genie or leprechaun at the bottom?  
Having done this all of one time, I've declared myself something of an expert on the subject.  Here are my thoughts.

What works? Great coverage, good shading, very good consistency in that it sticks to the figure well without all running down to the base like my Future mixes do.  AP puts a protective coat over your painting, which is especially handy with skirmish figures.  The shading is quite nice once it cures.  


What doesn't?  Good lord it stinks!  I can't dip with an open window because its winter.  This is a challenge for anyone who lives as far north of the equator as the Vikings once did.  When I dip, I have to do it quickly and then shut the door to my painting room.   Also, I have to keep mineral spirits on my painting table to clean my dipping brush and to be honest, I'd much rather work with water-based products for the easy clean up and no smell.  

Gripping Beast figs dipped and highlighted.  Once again, I kept a limited Dark Age palette.  I'm pleased with the results but I'll go a bit lighter on some of my base colors the next time.




Up next  is my Viking warlord  pictured in his Saga below.  If you can name the man in the floppy black hat, I'll spot you +20 Viking history points.  Well, anyone other than Michael of the excellent Dalauppror blog as he'll know this on sight.  Sorry, Michael!
Viking poet, warrior, farmer...and stone cold killer.

29 comments:

  1. He's an outlaw from iceland, but i don't know his name. I think he was exiled?
    Nice archers BTW!

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    1. Thanks Max and +15 Viking points for being so close.

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  2. That is cracking work Monty, fecking lovely looking figures.

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  3. Hi Monty,

    well done ! very nice work ! so many beards! is there Kurt cobain in the band,I ask this question just because AP quickshade smells like "tin" spirit ;-)
    you'll be very happy to have this bowmen in your band to slow down the impetuosity of the enemy mounted troops;-)
    you are right, the block painting part of the work is boring, but you 'll not care or remember this problem very easily with the toxicity of the quickshade that will destroy all your neurons if you use it in closed area, please take care of your health, use a painting mask !
    an advice perhaps ?? put your can of quick shade in a plastic bag otherwise it will dry very quickly or you'll be unable to open it without ruining the pot;

    Chhers

    Gilles

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    1. I cannot read one of your comments without laughing, Gilles. That is priceless!

      OOoo, good tip sir. I will bag it immediately. Now, what to do about a painting mask. I'm going to come out of my room and frighten my family!

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  4. Looking good Monty. Did you actually dip, or did you brush it on?

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    1. Good point, I'm using the wrong term. I brushed it on and after it settled, I went back with the brush and took a bit off where it pooled. I can't imagine doing the dip and shake. That would ruin my painting room.

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  5. Hi Monty!
    Some fantastic figures here, you did a great work, painting style and bases are wonderful!
    Phil.

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  6. Nice work Monty! I've had a pot of this for ages, I may have to give it a go!

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    1. I'd like to report that it has pleasant hallucinogenic side effects, but it doesn't.

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  7. Nicely done. I find the quickshade too expensive, but seeing how often I run out of my DIY version, may get some soon.
    The guy is either Egill or Snorri but always confuse them.

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    1. It is expensive. I have a whole tin so I need to use it up. But I'm not sure if this is a keeper for the way I paint.

      Bingo, Egil. excellent memory! +20!

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  8. The color variety of your archers' wardrobe will make these fellows stand out on the table. Nice striping effect on the shields. Also like the result of your dip. I've been using Minwax Polyshades Tudor as the dip medium and like the results.

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    1. Thanks Jonathan! Before I bought AP, I did look at the Big Box store and was overwhelmed. I couldn't tell which water based stain might work on minis. I'm going to shoot you an email and get the name.

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  9. Looking great Monty! I think those archers will come in handy for sure. I have been using the GW Devlan Mud replacement -- I suppose it is time I look into something else and see how it works myself.

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    1. Hey Jonathan! If it works, stay with it. There is nothing wrong with Earthshade. I guess I'm hung up on the memory of what was and shall never be. ;-)

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  10. Excellent! Although I've yet to try them out, I have a unit of Levy bowmen in my Viking warband. I just couldn't resist not having longer ranged missile fire. The javelin guys I had before got killed off too easily by enemy cav and bowmen. Best, Dean

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    1. Dean, you are one of the people who KILL in this. One day I hope to graduate to a variation on your style of block with highlights and THEN stain.

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  11. +20 Viking history points, Thanks Monty for the cred ;) The Picture are from a 17th century manuscript, suppouse they thought Vikings looked like that during that time...

    I still have 1 pot of dewland mud:) But I started to use the Army painted Strong Tone Ink, its not Dewland but it works and it dosent smells like the Dip...

    Very good looking archers, they can be handy against some opponents, I always field them as one large unit, it cost to much to use them in one splits the in two...

    Best regards Michael

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    1. I knew it! If I ever need some background info on Vikings, I know where to go.

      I've heard good things about AP strong tone ink but no hobby store in Minneapolis carries it. I'll have to order a bunch on line.

      Thanks!

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    2. :) I´ll just got me a new stunning Viking book: http://www.spartacus.no/index.php?ID=Bok&ID2=581
      Vikingar i Krig, in english "Vikings at War" writen by 2 Norwegians(Historian and Arceolog). The book are 400 pages and very well writen with realy good illustrations as the Osprey ones. BUT...so far only published in Norwegian and Swedish, I have mailed the Publisher and asked if they will have it translated to English but I still havent got any answer.

      Looking forward to see Egil painte up, will you use the GB mini?

      Best regards Michael

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    3. Oh, I would so love to have that book and be able to read it. Fingers crossed. With all the interest in Saga and Vikings, I think it could do quite well.

      Yea, it's the GB mini. :-)

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  12. Very nice work indeed the method is really working for you!

    Christopher

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    1. Thanks Christopher. I'm tweaking as I go along but it's all fun so far!

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  13. First of all Monty... Comgratulations for reaching the 50K on your blog!

    Regarding the Levy archers... I think I am one of the biggest advocates against Levies. It takes SAGA dice to activate them, while zhey do not generate any themselves. And they drop like flies in combat. I think the only exception are Saxons which are geared towards large units and where close combat levies get Warrior stats.

    All that being said... Man they look mighty nice!

    Regarding the Army Painter. I am much in line with you there. I recently found there is an alternative from Coat d' Arms, whichnis supposed to look the same, but is not solvent based and therefore eliminates the smell. Plus it is supposed to be non-glossy. That being said... I bought two pots but did not get a chance to try them out yet.

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    1. Thanks Burkhard! Interesting, I appreciate your suggestions greatly. I wonder, what do your recommend for the Normans?

      I'm eagerly awaiting your review of Coat d' Arms!

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    2. For Normans I think the first choice is crossbows. Only slightly less shots than the Levies, but with the ability to reduce enemy armour they are well worth it.

      With the cavalry heavy Normans you will always be able to protect them from other archers or close combat troops. Opposing cavalry might be a problem, if your own is too far away to interdict them, but then the crossbows are even deadlier vs. cavalry.

      I shall do my best to try the CdA "dip" soon. BTW... One thing it is not is inexpensive. It sells in smaller pots (I think around 50ml nut I am not at home to look). If you multiply that by 10 you should end up about as expensive as with the AP.

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