Copyright © 2017, Paul Scrivens-Smith

Copyright © 2017, Paul Scrivens-Smith

All rights reserved. This work may not be reproduced, in whole or in part, without the prior written permission of the creator.

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Pacific War Reinforcements

Back in my teens I used to own a massive collection of WWII ships and would play many a game of General Quarters with my mates. I let these ships go the way of eBay many years ago, and if I'm honest they looked like they were painted thirty years ago and were not getting any usage.

A couple of years ago we re-discovered General Quarters and I started building up a new collection of 1/3000 WWII naval ships again. Although this time I would find an historical battle and then purchase all the ships needed to play it rather than buying massive, disparate fleets on a whim. I've mainly concentrated on cruiser size battles and below as you can have a really good game on an 8ft square playing area.

A few days ago, I placed a small order on Navwar and with typical Navwar efficiency they were with me in just a few days. It was just a matter then of painting them. This is the method I use:

  1. Clean up the ships
  2. Stick to plywood bases, typically 75mm x 25mm for cruisers and 50mm x 20mm for destroyers
  3. Create a 'sea' effect with Vallejo Gel Denso
  4. Spray with Halfords grey primer
  5. Paint the ships with Vallejo paints, I find this guide really useful for painting the USN vessels. This is also a really good comparison chart for the Vallejo colours.
  6. Paint the bases with Vallejo Prussian Blue
  7. Drybrush the entire ship and base with Vallejo Pale Grey
  8. Wash the decks and super-structure with a glaze of Vallejo Black
  9. Wash the 'sea' with a glaze of Vallejo Dark Prussian Blue
  10. Hilight the sea, wake, etc. with Vallejo White
  11. Varnish with matt varnish

In just a few hours this weekend I have painted 5 IJN cruisers, 18 IJN destroyers, 2 USN cruisers, 18 USN destroyers, 2 Royal Netherlands Navy destroyers.

Here are some shots of the ships painted over the weekend:

Having painted these last few ships, I now have every ship in my collection to do the following historical engagements:


  • Battle of the River Plate
  • Battle of the Java Sea
  • Battle of Sunda Strait
  • First Battle of Savo Island
  • Third Battle of Savo Island
  • Fourth Battle of Savo Island
  • Battle of Empress Augusta Bay

Plus I have a few extra ships so that I can do many 'what-if' engagements too. It's become rather an obsession and I now have the following painted ships in my collection:

  • Imperial Japanese Navy : 2 battle-cruisers, 16 heavy cruisers, 10 light cruisers, 1 aircraft carrier, 44 destroyers, 1 sea plan tender & 3 submarines.
  • Kreigsmarine: 1 battle-cruiser.
  • Royal Netherlands Navy: 4 light cruisers & 6 destroyers.
  • Royal Australian Navy: 2 heavy cruisers, 3 light cruisers & 3 destroyers.
  • Royal Navy: 4 heavy cruisers, 1 light cruiser & 8 destroyers
  • Royal New Zealand Navy: 1 light cruiser
  • United States Navy: 2 battleships, 9 heavy cruisers, 13 light cruisers, 38 destroyers & 4 submarines.
  • Merchants: 12 various ships

Here are some images of the ships painted this weekend:


IJN heavy cruisers: Takao, Atago, Maya, Aoba & Kinugasa

18 IJN destroyers of various classes


Koninklijke Marine destroyers Van Nes and Van Ghent
USN light cruisers Atlanta & San Diego

18 USN destroyers of various class

IJN heavy cruiser Aoba

IJN heavy cruiser Takao

USS San Diego


IJN destroyer Ayanami

IJN destroyer Harusame



RNN destroyer Van Ghent


USN destroyer Parrott