Wednesday, September 3

We go back to 'Nam with Mig's latest edition of the Weathering Magazine in our review

We get a chance to look at a lot of the top modelling from around the world in the form of magazines here at TMN. Recently there has been a spike in new publications full of S.B.S model builds – Mig’s Weathering Magazine is one of the most popular and we look at the new “Vietnam” issue #8 in today’s review…

Weathering Magazine
Issue 8
70 pages
A4 Portrait format
Available in 6 different languages: Czech, English, Polish, Hungarian, Spanish & French
Price: 8€ or you can subscribe to this magazine as well.
Ammo’s Weathering Magazine Website also available in digital versions apple & android

Since starting up his new business Mig Jimenez has continued to be a force in the modelling industry. On line, through his modelling and in personal appearances around the globe he certainly is a positive personality in the business of modelling which sometimes can be wracked with an envious and competitive Culture.

It seems you cannot have a brand without a lifestyle magazine to go along with it now-days – and Mig’s new series of mags are called “The weathering Magazine”. The issue we look at today is number eight in the series – this one focusses on the Vietnam conflict of the 60’s and 70’s

The “Vietnam” issue is regular enough on the outside – it is a glossy covered A4 mag with seventy pages inside packed with builds and step by step (SBS) builds which are all the rage nowadays with us all too time-poor to read anything :-).
One or two notes about the structure of this magazine. This series is of the newer format that we like here – a slightly higher price but less adverts inside.  In the seventy pages there are seven single pages of adverts in between the builds at random. A lot of these are for the stockists of Mig magazines which makes me thing they are not even needed apart from building a network. Fair enough I suppose as the Eight Euro cost is less than all of the “Gen 2” mags we currently review. The adverts don’t get in the way of the builds which is nice except once where they take half of a page away from the lovely Phantom build.

The other thing of note here is that there are no half-arsed reviews – no product previews just builds. There is one puzzle page which I just did not get until I lightened up a little and had fun with it. (I found all five of the hidden objects don’t worry). With this page and the others with lovely ladies with big guns through the mag I do think that this mag truly has it’s heart in the “fun” camp of modelling and not the “wankery” (not sure if that is a real word or not) that exists in the top echelon of any hobby.

All of the builds and techniques in this magazine (apart from one) relate directly to the Vietnam war – and the iconic vehicles of this conflict are all there The Mig-17, the F-4 Phantom, the NVA T-59 and M-48 Patton tanks as well as the UH-1 Huey helicopter. Good subjects to pick so we will look at them now as well as all the other bits..

First up John Murphi builds a very swinging M-48 A3 Patton tank that he shows us from start to finish with a lot of weathering using Lifecolor paints and pastes. The model was inspired by a picture sent to the builder and it looks like he has captured the nature of this heavily armed tank right down to the dainty looking parasol included in the turret.
Next in a very well written article we look at the NVA Type 59 battle tank built by Iain Hamilton. Iain is a bit of a Vietnam aficionado and as the Editor of this magazine I think he has been waiting for this issue and maybe had a hand in the choice of subject? Anyway this Patton is painted using the black and white method which is in vague at the moment – it looks very effective as the thin layers of paint above, the Ammo pigments combined with rain and rust effects (and the help of some foliage and a fluttering VNVA flag) make this a well thought out and executed expose.
We then see the benefit of Iain’s knowledge of the soils of Vietnam with a double page spread of the different soils of Vietnam and how to replicate them with AMMO products – part of me thinks this is good for selling pigments but the other part says this is a great tool showing you just which of these pigments to apply in your preferred build and isn’t that what we all need – a little hand holding from someone who knows the lay of the land? Anyway this section is a good inclusion to this mag.
Another useful inclusion is the section that shows the painting techniques of two G.I’s in the conflict. In an SBS we see just how to try and improve your painting skills with shading gradually the skin, uniforms and the scene they are in.  With too many of us needing help in replicating the human form in paint a section like this is oh-so-welcome.
Next we go onto the signature vehicle from the Vietnam War – the UH-1 Huey in 48th scale model built by Yang- Yu-Pei. Adorned with a large shark mouth and suitably beaten and chipped this helicopter is a personal favourite and I can see I would not be alone in this. Yang has used Tamiya acrylics and some AMMO washes and pigments to complete this eye catching chopper with a cool ace of spades decal and base.
Vladimir Demechenko shows us how to create a thick foliage of jungle in layer after layer of bush and shrub on brown earth created with laser cut and photo etched leaves painted and shaded to make a dense setting for the NVA soldiers to almost disappear into. It is a very effective presentation.
The Academy 1/48th scale F-4B Phantom II from the US navey “Death Rattlers” is next for examination. A great build by Jamie Haggo is seen again Step by step with some excellent work on shading to make a convincingly sea-worn scheme. It is a shame we do not see more of this kite here but what is on show is very nice.
We soon see more of Mr. Haggo’s building skill though with the natural enemy of the F-4 in Vietnam in the form of a 48th scale MiG-17 Fresco in a very chipped and worn dark green with a lot of masking that is painted over and chipped away and distressed just like in real life. The build is again quick but it is very well exhibited and talked through by the author.
Next we get more “how-to” from Jean Bernard Andre as he shows us how he created a diorama of an old man standing in a river bed with muddy water up to his ankles. With so much of the conflict fought around the deltas and rice fields this is a really handy few pages that could be applied to many of our Vietnam builds.
These pages of tricks and techniques are a great addition – even though they do not really feature any models as such they show you a lot about the environment the models might be placed in.

The next section has a great model painted and weathered up very nicely. The modeller Oishi sure knows his stuff and a lot of modellers would find it interesting – but I am not sure just how to relate in my mind a robot meccha suit into the Vietnam War setting – I love the model but I just think it could be served in another edition of this magazine.
A good illustration of just how to use a product preview in relation to the magazine it features in is the “Choose the right product” section of four pages. Instead of random products we see (with a little help from our host to further distract us) some very good products to add to the Vietnam setting in foliage, figures and tank kits on the market just released.
 Ruben Torregrosa shows us how to weather up a wargaming scale (1/54th) North Vietnamese tank to firstly a basic – then intermediate and then advanced level using Vallejo and then AMMO acrylics and washes with pigments. Again it feels like how to use our products but it is helpful, detailed and this far outweighs the lack of variety of product used in the process.
Lastly we see Mig and company on their trips to Swedish and Slovakian model shows – now I love Slovakia but I would rather see two more pages of models here…These would be better served to social media I am thinking although it’s good to see these events.
So all in all the first look we have had at these magazines in the flesh is impressive. Cheap – not too many adverts and a good variety of the most stirring vehicles and aircraft of the Vietnam War, the editor has chosen his builders well also. These guys can write. The few non theme-specific bits could be trimmed out of the mag and I would have no problems at all. I think the addition of the how-to and the preview articles are a great addition that are right on target.

This is a great magazine made with a lot of love which comes through the pages,we hope to see it develop over the issues to come..

Adam Norenberg

Thanks to the guys (and gals) at AMMO for sending this to us - you can subscribe to this magazine at Ammo’s Weathering Magazine Website also available in digital versions apple & android