16 March 2013

What's in the box? Woodland Scenics Wind Turbines & Solar Panels

One of the great things about going from 40K to 15mm was the realisation that the wargaming future didn't have to be all dark, grim and  skully! So when I came across this piece of terrain I just knew that my miniatures needed green energy! 

Badland Windmill for Heavy Gear, picture from Dream Pod 9 website

And then I saw the price... And the postage!

Fortunately, a little google-fu provided the following alternative: Woodland Scenics Scene-A-Rama (a range of products designed for school projects) Alternative Energy Scene Setters is a pack containing two windmills and two solar panels. They're $11 a pack (although I found a couple blisters on ebay for €7 and vastly more advantageous postage to Europe).

So what's in the b... Clear plastic blister?

GZG NI, Rackam/AT-43 trooper and Lego minifig for scale. To  avoid any
accusation of choosing non standard miniature in order to mislead my readers...
The windmills are 10 cm high (from base to hub) and the rotor is 8cm diameter (4" high and just over 3" diameter). For the record, at 1/100 (typical scale for 15mm) that would make the rotor about 8m (26') diameter while typical modern wind turbines have rotor of 40-90m wide. So I guess I'll use those as "back yard" wind turbines powering small compounds (research station, colony farm, hunting lodge...) In my opinion, they're too small for 28mm (the mini could pretty much hit the rotor by raising its weapon), but that's for everyone to figure for himself.

They're 3 pieces (base, mast-generator and rotor) light gray plastic with the generator and the blades painted silver, and the rotot hub painted black. They could really use some repainting. Also the base is a bit small and light if your playing surface isn't perfectly flat and you don't watch for wide movement near them. So a bigger base and some weight are also a good idea. And some tanks and wires and shit if you want to go for the whole Badland look à la DP9!

The Solar Panels are not much to write home about (but I won't let that deter me from blogging about them): two pieces of plastic (panel and frame) that rest on each other but need gluing to really hold (unlike the turbine that just snaps together). Both the panel and the frame footprint are 5cm x 3cm (2" x 1,2") and the panel rests at an angle of 60° from the ground. Both the panel and frame are painted silver, with the actual cells metallic blues and some wiring on the back painted black. There perfectly serviceable, but they're nothing even I couldn't scratch-build.


  1. Picked up half a dozen packs of these from Hobby Lobby on sale for $6.00 each. They are just about perfect for any kind of Mars or colony style setup. I would suggest basing the windmills on a steel washer though. They are not the most stable model, and a bit of weight at the bottom really helps with that.

  2. Generally, brands such as Noch or Busch offer products aimed at the model railways market. They have tons'a stuff for wargaming, be they buildings, scenery or what have you.

  3. and for weird conversions, everything made by Evergreen (I-beams or girders for instance) are the fecal waste too !