Monday, February 12, 2018

Anti tank guns..!

...the paint brushes were a veritable whirr the weekend before last, clearly..   these were the last items to leave the paint table...  all of these are destined to bolster my 15mm skirmish forces for France 1940.

...firstly, British 2 pdrs - these are from "Forged in Battle", and bought at Warfare last November...


...bit fiddly if I'm honest but nice when painted up..  the crew member firing is cast as part of the gun...


..next - from the same maker. German 37mm Pak's...


...nice models but again quite fiddly to put together as the barrel is separate..


...and then finally some French 25mm anti tank guns, this time from Peter Pig..



..."ouvrir le feu!" 


Friday, February 09, 2018

Officers.. "Not without cause"

...apologies for the delay - finished these last last weekend but didn't have time to take the photo's!

Striking while the painting mojo is hot, some officers for the nascent English Civil War project..  these are mostly/all Les Higgins figures..

Group as a whole..



Next - mounted figure with banner image that I shamelessly nicked from the Dux Homunculorum blog [clicky] - the guidon or flag is attributed to that carried by a Parliamentarian Cornet belonging to Captain Dobbins of Worcestershire motto means "While I breathe, I hope". For my games he will serve on either side...


Love this one which again was shamelessly appropriated, but this time from this chap [clicky] - he represents a Parliamentarian cavalry cornet, the motto in this case "Not without cause"..


..love those colours...  the flag is way too big of course but I am a founder member of the "big flag school" so to me it's perfect..


So, six figures in all, and despite being 'classics' not my favourite figures really - not the nicest anatomically - almost half round some of them...

Thursday, February 01, 2018

Brown water navy .. reinforcements...

....on a roll and first points on the painting 2018 table...

...one of the highlights of last year were the games DG and I had with my ACW ships refighting the Monitor and Merrimac/Virginia battles using rules provided by Bill Gilchrist..  so much so I decided to expand on the forces available in order to provide a little variety..

All the following are from Peter Pig's "Hammerin' Iron" range of 1/600th scale (3mm) ships.. I love them as they are just the right size to see what they are, while not being so big that you can't get a few on my six by four table..

First off then.. from the catalogue these are the USS Miami [clicky - and well worth clicking - very interesting history] in the foreground, and the CSS Drewry [clicky] behind (small gunboat) - names of the ships are fairly immaterial as I will use them on either side (hence the lack of flags)


...and the other way round...


...next a couple of side wheelers - how could you not?? On the left is the CSS Planter [clicky], on the right is the CSS General Sumter [clicky] - again - names immaterial as I'll use them on either side as representative of the myriad ships both sides cobbled together and threw at each other... and in fact in the case of these two, both actually did change hands in reality..



....and all four at full steam ahead - except the small gunboat!    I can see me getting a few more of these perhaps as there are some lovely options in the catalogue [clicky]


Part numbers..
07003-CSS Planter(side wheeled paddle steamer) (CSA/USA)
07007-USS Miami (side wheeled)
07046-CSS Drewry (small gunboat)
07015-CSS General Sumter ram/paddler

Monday, January 29, 2018

Hinchliffe vs Tumbling Dice - size comparison..

Back in May or June last year, Lee of the NostalgicECW blog [clicky] fame, sent me a parcel of quite astonishingly generous proportions full of Hinchliffe little metal men.. I had been admiring his rapidly growing collection (and still do, the latest post - as we speak or rather type - is chock full of cavalry splendid'ness)

I was bemoaning the lack of progress in my own English Civil War project, and had gone on about how irritating I found it having to stick the heads to the bodies of the Tumbling Dice miniatures I had chosen to go with, and he mentioned that he'd send me a "few" so I could do a size comparison..  suffice to say a half shoe box full arrived in the post, full of examples of all arms, so many in fact that I had enough for whole units should I wish..

Being me, and deep in painting funk these sat on the paint table for 6 months but the following was the result of a fun afternoon in the loft at the paint table (binge watching Dickensian which I got on DVD for Christmas)..  you'll note that both sets of figures are on painting sticks - the funk may be over..

Difficult to portray the comparative size when you are doing close up as clearly whichever is in the foreground appears bigger, but this is the best..

Hinchliffe in the background - Tumbling Dice foreground...



Hinchliffe are nominally 25mm (old 25mm, so small compared to the monsters of today), Tumbling Dice are 20mm (which was my choice of scale for the project)

Hinchliffe left

..one thing I noticed was that there was a fair amount of scale creep even within the Hinchliffe figures I had - some of the poses seem bigger than others...

Hinchliffe front
Tumbling Dice front

Hinchliffe front..

...and lastly a 'perspective shot' - bottom line? In their own units I think the foot at least will work very well...  stay tuned for a cavalry comparison

Hinchliffe rear - note the comparative size of the figure on the left of the painting stick to the one on the right
- a marked difference within the same range.. I'm growing to like those tumbling Dice figures...

Separately, I also think I have addressed my issue with the construction of the Tumbling Dice figures..  my issue was having to balance the damn head while the super glue takes...      ...and then over on one of the sailing forums I frequent someone mentioned this stuff...

...other makes are available...
That my friends is cyanoacrylate accelerator - or 'super glue drying speeder upper' - mine is spray can, but you can get in dropper bottles..  it doesn't make the glue set instantly, but it is set between one and two minutes after spraying... a game changer..  recommended.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

"The Cretan Runner" - a review..

..this was a recommendation by Big Lee on his blog [clicky] and as I've always had an interest in the war in the Mediterranean, and have always wanted to go to Crete, I book marked it for a future read, and was more than happy to find I had been given it for Christmas...

Fascinating book, dealing with the war time resistance on Crete..  George was a runner for the British SOE officers on Crete (Patrick Leigh Fermor [clicky] being probably the best known) and the book details life on the run and in hiding..  My assessment was it was a truly exhausting and scary existence..  food was short, they lived in caves, and all the time being hunted by the Germans assisted by (gratifyingly few it seemed to me) traitors and informers..

He details air drops, the picks up by caique at night on deserted beaches, the endless route marches across the mountains sometimes taking days, and at one point is extracted to Cairo for a period of training before he decides to go back and continue his war in Crete...

As I said a fascinating story, and interesting guy, with a good sense of humour...  after the war he jailed by the Greeks as a deserter (despite his MBE from the British!) and was a year and a half in prison before his old comrades on the British side managed to secure his release..  always impoverished, Leigh Fermor persuaded him to release the book, and also edited it, and indeed this one has a number of comments and foot notes by him..  amazing stuff..    T

The book gives  good view of  how the British and their Cretan allies operated on the island, what I'd now like to know more about is why they were there as the British clearly saw it as very important in military terms... I'd love to read about what was in those messages!  

Steve the Wargamer rates this one 8/10.