Wednesday, September 27, 2017

More Infinity Painting, PanO Edition

Last week I showed off some recent Nomad paint jobs.  Here are the PanO minis that are completed.  Two weeks ago I talked about how I made the barrels.

Clipper and Sierra Dronbots

Knight of Montesa



Jotum and Crabbot

Friday, September 22, 2017

A New/Old Francorchamps Track for CFR at Congress of Gamers

10 cars going through La Source on turn 2
on the modern version of Francorchamps
I've gotten into the habit of creating variations of existing tracks for the races I've run at Congress of Gamers and Winter Game Fest -- held in my hometown of Rockville, MD.

This year I decided to do an older version of the famous race track situated in Francorchamps, Belgium.  This is an OLD track that dates back to the 1920s.  It started life as a 14 mile long monster connecting the towns of Spa and Francorchamps.  That track was last used by F1 in 1970.

It would be 13 years before F1 returned to a much shortened track akin to what is used today.  In the years between then and now, there was some tinkering to the track that resulted in the modern version first used in 2007.

I modeled the 2007 layout for Championship Formula Racing earlier.  It is an interesting track in that it is very long and looks like it would cater to race from the back strategies.  But in real races it tends not to as discussed in my recent categorizing of tracks post.

My hypothesis is that the quick run into La Source thins the field and gives front of the pack cars a boost they never quite lose in most races.  Thus my interest in the 1983 version of Francorchamps.

1983 was the first F1 race on the new, shortened Francorchamps and is the only F1 race on that track that used the old start / finish line which was located just AFTER La Source.  This is where the start / finish line had been for the entire previous history of the track.

I left most of the track the same as very few changes seem to have been made from 1983 to now.  The two places big changes had been made were at La Source and the Bus Stop.  In the end I was able to get two new tracks out of this because in 1985 F1 returned to Francorchamps and the only change from 1983 was that the start / finish line was moved to its current location.  This layout stayed in affect roughly through 2005 and the advent of the modern layout.
Lets look at a couple of the non-start/finish line changes.  La Source looked a fair bit wider back then.  So I made it 3-wide and re-profiled it in general.

1983 / 1985 version of La Source.
You can see the back of the starting grid just after the corner.

2007 / modern version of La Source

The bus stop has gone through a lot of changes over the years.  This version is roughly right for the time period (they made so many changes, I am not likely to make versions of them all).  This older bus stop is a little faster and splits up the back straight differently than the current version.

1983 / 1985 version.  Note how much closer to the kink in the back straight it sits.
The couple extra spaces are effectively on the other end of the corner.

2007 / modern version of the Bus Stop.

I am excited to run this track October 7th at Congress of Gamers to see if behaves more like a race from behind track than its modern cousin.  I hope to see some of you out there.

CFR Race at Congress of Gamers, Fall
October 7th, 2017
9:30 am teaching demo and set-up
10:00 am race start

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

More Infinity Painting, Nomads Edition

I've been making more progress on painting the Infinity armies but Michael took some time away from basing and then decided he was retiring.  He liked it but it got repetitive.

So, I just based the hordes I had painted.  Below are the Nomads.  Last week I talked about how I made the barrels that appear in these pictures.

This was my first experience mixing a paint color for the light blue shirt he's got on (outside some flesh tones for skin) .  I've mostly been avoiding this so that as I slowly paint minis over time, I don't have to worry about re-mixing some color I did once and never getting it right.  I'm treating this as a one-off so it was OK.

Moran and Krazy Koalas

Carlota and Moriarty
Corregidor Bandit
I was trying for a bit of a camo affect for his hoody and it turned out better than I'd hoped.  I really like how this one turned out.

Reverend Healer 

Gecko Squadron Pilot
When I got this mini, my first reaction was that he had to be bigger in scale than the little arms you see poking out from underneath the full Gecko armor.  In fact, I immediately suspected that they shrunk the scale of the arms inside the armor a little... but after I painted them and put the two next to each other it actually looks right.



Thursday, September 14, 2017

Solo Race #8, 3 Laps at Sao Paulo

Three races left in my 2017 solo series.  I cling to a small lead over Jackie Stewart as we head to Sao Paulo, Brazil for a 3-lap race.

I think I can accelerate slowly and still get to my top speed and I think the higher deceleration will come in handy a couple places on the track.  I want lots of wear here and hope to make a move from a mid-field start.

I bid 4 for the pole and ended up tied with two other drivers, lost the tie breaker die rolls, and ended up 6th.  Mansell was one of the two cars I tied with and he got huge value bidding 4 for 4th on the grid.

Fangio just beat Vettel for pole by a skill chip.  Stewart ended up 7th.

Lap 1

Alonso (yellow) rolls a forced pass and ends up 3rd off the start.
Alonso gets past me on the start.  Although he had to roll a forced pass to do it.  That move got him up to 3rd.

Stewart and Fittipaldi pass me exiting the Senna S with their better accelerations.  I'm down to 9th already -- an early drop in position that has become pretty typical for me this season.

As the cars begin lap 2, Fangio has built up a big lead.  Alonso is third again -- having given the position up to Rindt earlier, then taking it back on the big front straight.  Mansell is 5th.  I'm 9th.

Lap 2

I start making a move in the middle of lap 2.  Here I spend 3 wear to pass Fittipaldi.  Later I'll spend more wear so that I can get out onto the front straight with everyone else.

Me (in blue) passing Fittipaldi to move out of 9th.

Lap 3

As I cross the line to start lap 3, I pass Rindt and Hunt under braking and get inside Mansell -- all the way into 5th.

Me moving into 5th after the long straight to start lap 3.

 I was able to stay in front of Mansell exiting the Senna S and tucked in behind Stewart.  This is the real battle -- can I get past Stewart?  Meanwhile, Fangio broke his top speed and is out of the race, leaving Vettel to try to hold off a hard charging Alonso.

On the right, I take the slip from Stewart and dive inside for 2 wear for the pass.  You can also see Alonso has caught up to Vettel.

Huge move for me that I hope I can make stick and which will extend my championship lead a bit.

But Stewart fights back.  Below he spends 3 wear to pass me.  In addition Raikkonen has fought his way up from the back to challenge for a podium as well.  You can also see that Alonso got past Vettel a couple turns ago.

Stewart (orange) pass me.
But the very next turn both Vettel and Stewart chance Bico De Pato in efforts to challenge Alonso for the win.  Both spin.

Vettel (red) and Stewart (orange) spin in front of me and Raikkonen.
I got through Bico De Pato even with Stewart who then spun the next turn chancing the last corner of the race.

In the drag race down the front straight, I lucked out that Raikkonan broke his top speed and so I was able to hold on to second and keep Stewart behind me.

Alonso long ago finished for the win as I hold off Mansell, Raikkonan,
and Stewart for 2nd.

Wrap Up

The second place was my 4th podium of the season and was extra nice because Stewart (5th), Fangio, (dnf) and Vettel (dnf) did not have good races as my top competition for the championship.

Alonso's win was his best result.  Mansell's 3rd was his 3rd podium in the last 4 races.

Next up will be Nurburg for a quick 2-lapper before the final race at Mogyorod.

If you want to see this race turn-by-turn, see the google album.  If you missed a race, check out the series summery.