Sunday, May 26, 2024

Earthbound but aspiring

The Dohwar are a race of space penguins from the Spelljammer setting. I don't know too much about them, but even though I am a fan of whimsy in fantasy, I'm lukewarm about Dohwar which seem to have devolved into yet another quirky comedy relief race that populates the D&D universe.

A couple of miniatures of Dohwar appeared in the Icons of the Realms line. There is a standard Dohwar (Adventures in Space #5), and a Dohwar & Space Swine (Adventures in Space #18).

I wonder if the creator of the Dohwar had the flying pig with the motto "To the stars on the wings of a pig" used by John Steinbeck in mind when designing them.

In any event, I was interested in re-purposing the miniatures as giant albino penguins from the H.P. Lovecraft novella At the Mountains of Madness.

Most depictions of the albino Lovecraftian penguins make them distorted and grotesque.

For it was only a penguin—albeit of a huge, unknown species larger than the greatest of the known king penguins, and monstrous in its combined albinism and virtual eyelessness.

I prefer something a bit more unassuming like the Dohwar miniature, but sadly it is only about 19mm tall, which makes it closer in size to Inkayacu paracasensis than the full 6 foot height of Aptenodytes albus described in the Lovecraft story.

I slapped some white paint on the miniatures, and colored the feet, beaks, and horns in a coral color. The result was rather mediocre, and the penguins look a lot like oversized chickens...

Tekeli-li! Tekeli-li!

Maybe a dark wash, and perhaps a different color for the horns will make them look a little less chicken-like.

Friday, May 10, 2024

西西利 КамАЗ-5350

In an article at the 就爱模型 (Jiu Ai Moxing; [I] Just Love Models) site, Anthony Jin writes that Xixili Model (西西利模型) is the current incarnation of the old CC Lee model company, which in more recent times operated under the CC XF name.

He further reveals that the owners also founded Jinan Kaka Interactive Animation Design Co., Ltd. (济南咔咔互动动漫设计有限公司) which apparently is the company which produces the quick build 4D Model line.

In fact, I only came upon their series of KamAZ-5350 trucks while searching for new 4D Model releases.

The models seem to have been released around the start of the year, and I ordered examples of all the available trucks. So far I have received three of the models.

The kits are quick build models, and have a bit better detail than 4D Models offerings. In general, the body is molded in green plastic. The undercarriage, interior, and two piece wheels are in black plastic. The windows and headlights are in clear plastic with a smokey tint. Metal axles allow the wheels to spin.

Other than that, I will let the photos speak for themselves, since I don't have much more to offer, and don't know much about KamAZ trucks.

I will make a post with pictures of the built up models after I receive the two remaining kits — a Grad-K (2B26) and a tank transporter.

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Food Trucks

Before they became trendy, food trucks were often referred to by the unflattering nickname of "roach coach".

Chef, 2014

I used to think the name was unique to Hawai‘i, since that was where I first heard the term, but apparently it had been used on the mainland since the 1960s.

The Manapua Man

Wikipedia claims that food trucks originated from chuckwagons, but I prefer to think that they evolved from the food cart, as does this post from Cheapism.

Both Hot Wheels and Matchbox make models of food trucks, though none are truly 1/72 scale.

Hot Wheels produced food trucks in various liveries, based on their Good Humor Truck.

I don't have a model with the Good Humor tampos, but i do have a generic ice cream truck with scary clown tampos, and what I presume to be a Rasta bowl truck.

Around 2014, it seems that the base and interior were retooled, resulting in the ice cream man turning into something closer to an ice cream ghoul.

Quick Bite, 2017

Finally in 2018, the metal body was replaced with an all plastic body.

The Hot Wheels models are all similar in dimensions to the Combat Medic, which is to say they're very wide.

The Matchbox vehicles I have are the Ice Cream Van, and Chow Mobile.

The Ice Cream Van looks like an old style Bedford van, while the Chow Moblie is similar to a coffee/canteen truck, except without the quilted stainless steel body. Both models are all plastic.

A comparison of the metal and plastic Hot Wheels models with the two Matchbox models reveals they are all similar in size. The Chow Wagon might pass for 1/72 scale, but the Ice Cream Van is definitely overscale.