It must be 10 years or more since my only previous visit to the Triples show, but yesterday the weather was fantastic enough to demand a drive in the countryside to Sheffield, only 45 minutes away for me.

As a show, it was OK, much as any other I guess. I arrived in the afternoon and it was fairly quiet although there did still seem to be quite a few people around. The lighting was better than that at Salute (not saying much) but not great. Still, I was able to see what I wanted to see and the lack of crowds made it that bit easier.

Two priorities for me to see were Bruce Weigle’s St Quentin FPW game in 6mm and The Ilkely Lads’ Zorndorf. Both were superb and worth the trip alone. The scenery and sense of accuracy/reality of the St Quentin table were among the best I’ve seen, and it was nice to see some Heroics & Ros figures in use rather than the inevitable Baccus you tend to see these days. The battle had been played through earlier in the day so all was quiet by the time I was there. There was to be a re-play on Sunday.

I specifically sought out James Roach (Olicanalad) at the Zorndorf game as he’d recently painted a commission for me (the Saxon Rutowski Dragoons posted previously) and I hadn’t met him before to say hello. James was very welcoming and we chatted for a few minutes before confirming some further commissions that he’s going to fit into his busy schedule. The game itself was very impressive and it was great to see close up the large table covered in James’ work. The cavalry especially, and the hussars in particular, were awesome, as were all the hand-painted flags. Definitely eye candy!

Shopping wise I did pretty well. Some bargain old Ospreys (The Black Watch, Sudan armies and Ottoman armies), a handful of paints and some brushes, as well as a few figures – not something I generally buy at shows actually. I picked up a couple of packs of Perry’s from Dave Thomas, and a pack of Copplestone 15mm fantasy (bears and shape changers) for something completely different. Best of all was a good chat with Graham at Crann Tara (and Bob who was there at the same time), who in between discussion on future release plans, future games and flag commissions, did me a very generous deal on some superb Royal Ecossais who will be accompanying my Legion de Fleurie when they are done. Graham is a real enthusiast for the hobby and always a pleasure to spend time with. His corner of one of the halls was fairly warm, so he would definitely have earned the beer he was promising himself when he got back to his hotel!

A good trip out then, a bit of spending, and some familiar faces.

A couple of pics of the St Quentin game (I forgot to take any of Zorndorf, but James will have better on his blog anyway):



The Army Prepares to March

.. well, be carried more like.

As my figures almost always fight at home I’ve not had much need to prepare proper transport facilities for them. However, with the increased size of the force I’m taking to Ayton this year I needed something a bit better than just the usual boxfiles, bubblewrap and prayer – especially for individually based figures which will be vulnerable to falling over if not packed properly. Advice from other gamers (in particular Goat Major) led me to KR Multicases, who have a vast range of storage and transport packaging for wargame armies. Their stand at Salute was suitably grand but it was a bit crowded so I didn’t queue up for advice (also, I had no intention of buying anything there as I’d have had to lug it around for the rest of the day).

I did pick up a catalogue though and had a good look at the options before ringing the company last week. I spoke to a very helpful young lady who talked me through the different options and helped me come up with a useful mix of foam trays, all fitting inside a single touch cardboard case. Everything arrived a few days later and I’m very pleased with the quality and practicality of the KR stuff. I’ve gone for half-sized trays, in 2 different compartment sizes. This gives me plenty of flexibility for skirmishers, artillery crew, artillery pieces, scenery, dice and even cavalry. I easily managed to fill all the trays, which makes me think I might need to buy another case before too long!

All in all I’m impressed with KR’s products and service, and I think £25 is decent for something like this that’s going to last a long time.

Here’s a quick pic of some of the packed trays in situ.

A good haul

As well as my self-indulgent Minden order, I was also very fortunate in having a generous and thoughtful family which furnished me with some great hobby-related presents. First up, new and old books from my wife and mother in law respectively. The new ones add to my collections of the Wargaming in History and Wargamers’ Annual series respectively and both look like excellent editions. The Great Regiments book seems to have been printed the year I was born (so it’s a vintage publication obviously!) and contains an interesting mix of armies, units, battle histories and uniform information. Together these will keep me going for a while!

Then there is my academic artist sister who has come to my rescue as I could never find any Gesso when I’ve visited art supply shops. Now I can finally get to try it as an undercoating medium. Thanks sis!

Finally, there is my sister’s clearly bonkers partner, who decided he’d found the perfect present for someone into toy soldiers.


This door stop, clearly Airfix-inspired(!), weighs a ton, stands a foot high and comes from a company called Suck UK Ltd. Magic. Well we all like gag gifts from time to time don’t we?! 🙂

Now, I know someone into 54mm WW2 and that’s pretty big stuff, but I’m thinking I’d quite like to see a game using a bunch of these!


A Handy Gadget?

Wargamers will make use of almost any household item for modelling or playing, and I think it’s fair to say that most of us are sub-consciously on the lookout for possibilities as we go about our daily lives.

Which brings me to a new item, received by my wife as part of a corporate gift set at work (odd I know!): a triple timer for soft, medium and hard boiled eggs.

I have now acquired said egg timer and my initial thought was using it in games for time-restricted moves. How about 3 minutes to carry out your moves and decisions if your on-table general or sub-commander is rated Poor, 5 minutes for Average and 8 minutes for Exceptional? Got to be fun!

Any other ideas?

Re-organisation, with a little help from Sweden

I did some rationalisation of my hobby storage at the end of the summer, and made some decent progress in the face of the challenge of new stuff regularly being added. Getting into 28mm in the last couple of years has brought with it a serious volume problem in terms of storing the figures and scenery. So, a decent amount of stuff got thrown out or moved to the garage, and drawer and cupboard space was rationalised to provide me with some room to expand into again. The next issue will be the new terrain boards I’m planning and although they’re only 1 foot square they will soon eat up space.

This made my remaining task to equip the games room’s wall cupboard with more capacity, which would be courtesy of an IKEA bookcase from the good old Billy range. Naturally this resulted in a delay to the project as a trip to the massive human processing plant that is an IKEA store wasn’t something I was looking forward to! This Sunday just gone was the day however. Despite not having darkened their door in the best part of a decade it was everything I expected, but we actually did quite well and dashed round averting our eyes from the endless stuff-you-don’t-need-but-might-as-well-buy-now-you’re-here on display.

Once we’d escaped from the carpark of eternal despair and made it home, I cracked on and assembled the unit (which I admit was a very simple process due to the quality of the design and components), which is 40cm wide and 2m tall. It fits in sideways alongside the wider unit of the same style I already have in there and after an hour of shifting everything out, and then back in, I have my new terrain storage in place and less unwanted stuff in the rest of the games room, sorry – office.

Pics of a cupboard are tricky due to the light, and not that thrilling due to the subject, but it’s a blog so here goes:



First Post – An Introduction

So here goes, my first post..

I realise that there’s not exactly a shortage of wargaming blogs, many of which I frequent and enjoy, but it’s something I’ve wanted to do for some time and I hope it will offer something of interest to others – and a point of focus for me.

Like many 40-somethings, I made my first foray into gaming with miniatures at a young age with Airfix plastic figures, in both 1/72 and 1/48 scales, enjoying swirling battles across carpet and tabletop. From there it became more intriguing, as well as more complicated, with metal figures and commercial rules, although even at a youg age I always enjoyed the challenge of writing my own. Lots of different periods have been tried since then, with figures from 6mm to 25/28mm, and after plenty of dead ends, U-turns and re-basing campaigns, I’m probably happier now with my gaming choices than at any time previously.

That doesn’t mean I’ve got it all sorted, or am crystal clear in my thinking and focus – I wouldn’t be a true wargamer if that was the case now would I? I do, however, try to limit reckless changes of direction when something new and appealing appears, although I’m not always successful in this! The last couple of years has seen some projects leading me into new areas of interest and I’ll be posting about these as I continue to collect and paint for them. I tend to work on more than one thing at a time which keeps my interest levels up, although my painting output is by no means huge.

One of my key interests is imagi-nations, as the name of this blog suggests, for which I have or am working on 17th Century forces in 6mm and 28mm, and 18th and 19th Centuries in 28mm. Madness perhaps, but the options for creativity this offers makes it worth it. I also have 6mm Franco-Prussian War and Seven Years War collections, and a couple of others in that scale that need a lot of work to get them on the table. In 15mm it’s Ancients, Dark Ages and Fantasy, and then there are some naval periods and other odds and ends. I guess one of the benefits of eclectic interests is that there’s always something different to move on to when you hit a block with what you’re currently doing..

These days I also try to play games, whether with a friend, forum group or solo, as often as possible – something I’ve allowed to slip a bit too much in the past. For a hobby called war’gaming’ I suspect that a lot of people play very little or not at all – a poor reward for all the effort and money they expend. My personal mission is to make more time for playing, as I find it’s the best motivator for everything else hobby-wise, and always enjoyable too. That said, I’m sure the majority of posts will be about painting and modelling, but I’ll put up as many as possible about the games I play too.