Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Things OGRE

Kind of a hodge-podge today, all OGRE, but none large enough for a dedicated thread. Let's begin.

I've got several orders that should arrive in the next few days. The first is an order from Warehouse 23. I ordered most of what they have left. The main prizes are two Mk.III and one Mk.III-B. I also tried to load up on howitzers, light tanks, and GEVs. I may go back for some more of both Mk.III variants. The second order is from Walthers. Mostly Evergreen and Plastruct parts that lend themselves to scratch building in the OGRE universe. The third is an order from MicroMark. More about this later.

Since anything larger than a Mk.IV seems to be unavailable, I am contemplating scratching the unreleased and 'classified' Mk.VII. There is a fair amount of information on it in the Update and on the web, some official and some not so much. So I examined the various choices of armament, and came up with what I wanted in an Uber OGRE. First, four main batteries and eight secondaries. The Record Sheet shows  two howitzers, and I like that idea. The Sheet also shows twelve external missiles, with an extra twenty-four drone-reloads. I prefer them to be one-shot, with four missile racks and sixteen internal missiles added instead. Finally, I'll install twenty-four antipersonnel weapons.

A front section slightly larger than a Mk.VI would accommodate the four mains and eight secondaries with no problems. The two howitzers and the four more-than-usual external missiles could not be added to a standard size rear section. Simply lengthening it would make it too 'Fencer-like.'  I always envisioned an OGRE as twisting and turning, tearing up a battlefield. To my mind, that maneuverability would be best accomplished by a smaller middle section. OK, I had my basic layout, now I needed some visual aids to help me flesh it out.

Here is a quick and dirty model I threw together to test my design layouts. The front is only a little bigger than a Mk.VI, and on my model is 1-7/8" wide x 2" long. You can see it is large enough to handle the four main batteries and the eight secondaries. I penciled in a trapezoidal arrangement with the two lower mains outboard of the two upper. I will also try it reversed, as well as one above the other on the center line, with the other two on either side.

The middle section houses the howitzers and four of the external missiles. The platform measures 1-7/8" x 1-1/4". The howitzers will sit higher on a raised superstructure, while the missiles will remain at that level. The treads are wider on the ground, not sure I really like this. The rear platform is 1-7/8" x 1-1/2", and contains the four missile racks and the remaining eight external missiles.

I read somewhere this Mark didn't have the standard triangular tower. I'm going to try a submarine-style conning tower, though it will angle upward toward the back. The tower here will be larger and higher, sitting on a central spine.

I really like the main battery housing of the Mk.VI and the missile racks of the Mk.IV, so I made a couple of silicone molds of those features. They came out well, showing all the detail. So I grabbed the two-part resin bottles and...........uh-oh, the part-b bottle was thick and dark. I tried stirring it as best I could before mixing it with part-a.

Unfortunately, it had gone too bad. I was left with these two castings, which are only slightly firmer than a marshmallow. Fresh resin has been ordered, and that's the third order on the way.

Here is a gun tower I'm working on. I haven't decided exactly what armament will go on, but aiming it will be no problem. As you can see in the second picture, the gun swivels around in its housing, while the whole tower pivots in the base.

I was looking through all my plastic models for any spherical parts, and  I found these 280mm German rockets. Not too bad, but I do have some acrylic balls on the way, so I may be upgrading.

That's all for now. I should have a lot write about once all those orders come in.  Don

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