Rock it!

It started innocently enough. Goat Major suggested number 11 from the scenarios book, The Compleat Fondler, for our game of Sharp Practice he’s hosting next Saturday. ‘Sounds good’, I said, spotting, as GM had done, the need for a couple of rocket launchers. I offered to have a go at knocking something together. The Goat generously anticipated a lack of results and said we could always just use a couple of guns to represent them. The gauntlet was laid down then!

I knew I had a box of Victrix British Napoleonic artillery and thought I might use the gun carriages, at least temporarily. Then I spotted the limbers on the sprues and thought they might do even better. At this point I realised that I didn’t have much of a clue about what a period rocket launcher looked like, so I Googled Congreve and looked at some images. A ladder with some upright supports – not very inspiring (or mobile!)

However, the scenario mentioned that these rockets weren’t Congreve’s but were the invention of a competitor mad-scientist, so I decided that I had plenty of artistic licence to play with. I also remembered that I had a Warbases balcony set to plunder for bits, and I was good to go.

Assembling the limbers couldn’t have been easier. The main body, the axle and 2 wheels went together with plastic cement and I was then onto the rocket launcher frames, using the very handy balcony supports in the pack and some cut down railings. The pre-squared-off MDF meant everything was easy to glue together.

I also added a some bits to hold the rockets (which I wanted to be loose, not stuck on) in place – some thin metal modelling tube at the bottom and a couple of bits of card at the top. Next up were the rockets themselves. I was originally going for a very simple (lazy) approach – just pieces of brass rod, but I decided I could do better with a bit of effort. So, the brass rod had cut-down flags poles with pointy heads (from Huzzah! Miniatures) super glued to their tops, and I wrapped and glued some cotton thread round them to look the part – and to leave a length hanging down as the fuse. I made 4 so that my 2 launchers could be fully loaded.

The assembled battery, and showing the removable rockets:

 

The painting was pretty straight forward; black undercoat followed by Prussian blue main coat, and a lightened shade of the same as a drybrush/highlight. I picked out some metal fittings on the limbers with a metallic wash and then moved onto the rockets. These received brown shafts, black-grey heads (I was tempted to go with red and white but controlled myself) and pale ties and fuses.

So, here’s the finished battery, proudly paraded by Captain Bardolino and moved into position for a test firing (although if I was a member of the crew I’d be giving the rockets a much wider berth!):

 

 

I couldn’t resist the firing option, which simply involved some plastic tube as a sabot for one of the rockets, with cotton wool wrapped round it. A fun couple of hours all round, and watch out Major Goat!

Further 6mm arrivals

A few more regiments of Fleurians have arrived to swell the growing army of Medetia’s 17th century enemy.
Two units of infantry with pike and shot, and the Chevalier Garde Regiment of cavalry, on their grey horses. A sub-general completes this small contingent. This is already the best effort I’ve put in on my 6mm collections since 2011, so I’m determined to try to finish a few more units before my eyes plead for mercy and I have to revert to bigger figures! I have a further 2 cavalry and 4 infantry units plus a couple more generals I’d like to get done, which will bring the Fleurians up to par with the Medetians at 30 units each. Then for a nice big game ūüôā

Figures are Heroics & Ros.

Pics:

 

 

 

Slow progress but a few recent additions

What with a busy social schedule and a general lack of effort, I’ve not achieved much in July. Not feeling particularly big project-motivated, I’ve dabbled with a few bits and pieces instead. I’ve prepared a few items of scenery and some random figures for painting at some point in the future, and tried to press on with finishing the GW Fortified Manor, which has presented a bit of a painting desk blockage while it remains part-done.

I have managed to complete a few small items though. One 6mm cavalry unit for my 17th century Fleurians (Heroics & Ros figures as always) and a couple of 28mm figures for the same period but in skirmish size. These are a replacement for the regularly-skewered Lieutenant St Denis, one Capitan Sancerre, a Redoubt figure brandishing a sword. I’ve also painted a Warlord Games armed priest which might be useful for general use across a number of periods.

Hopefully August will be more productive!

Pics:

 

 

 

 

 

St Angelo’s Ghosts

The last figures I painted for the May multi-player extravaganza at Ayton were a unit of Hussars. Having done exactly the same in 2013, I knew what I was letting myself in for – Hussars are not the ideal troop type to have to finish to a deadline, there’s always more detail to find just when you think you’re nearly finished! Still, despite the stress and fatigue of again finishing them on the Friday morning (the day I was travelling..) I now have another unit of Hussars in the collection.

I suspect that if I didn’t paint them to a deadline I would put off doing them indefinitely. Guess what I’ll be painting at the start of next May?!

I didn’t have an opportunity to post about the new unit at the time, but they galloped onto the table after the smoke from the recent battle at Spurlacco had cleared and posed for a few shots.

This unit is part of the Medetian army and was raised by the Cavaliere di St Angelo, a noble from the northern uplands of the country. St Angelo chose to dress his regiment in white and other pale shades and mount them all on greys (a common horse colour in the region) – hence their nickname, ‘The Ghosts’.

The figures are Perry plastic Napoleonic French Hussars, using the mirliton head option, the presence of which in the box is a real boon to people wanting to use them for the 18th century.

 

 

The flag is just a bit of clipart from the web, printed as a design onto paper and painted. As with my other Hussars, I want these to be available both for 18th century games (where standard base sizes are needed, hence the sabots) and for early 19th century games (where I need them on single bases for Sharp Practice).

This unit balances out the Fleurian Legion Hussars (Minden Miniatures) and I plan to add another similar sized unit of the same figures respectively to each side in due course (in time for the next two Ayton deadlines I guess!)

Battle honours have yet to be earned by this new regiment, although they didn’t lack for courage at Ayton. They were in the first line of cavalry that dashed itself to pieces against Iain Burt’s guns and infantry (fortunately his cavalry wasn’t on form that day or I’d have been thrashed) in front of Pescadrix. Our war correspondent’s mid-action sketch below..

Legion de Fleurie – Light Infantry

Further to my previous post on the development of this imagi-nation¬†formation, since the Ayton weekend I have made some progress. I have continued to put off doing the main battalion (through laziness), so it was the light infantry next. The tremendous Minden Legion d’Hainault grenadiers chose themselves for this and I have kept the uniform blue and red in line with my plans for the Legion as a whole. Basing comes next of course, but I’ve run out of pre-mixed plaster so have posted anyway. I intend to add a complementary unit of Crann Tara Royal Ecossais advancing figures (purchased at Triples)¬†as the uniform is very similar and I think they’ll work well together.

Eventually the Legion de Fleurie will muster the following:

Commanding Officer
1 Infantry battalion (30 figures)
2 Light infantry companies (12 figures each)
2 Hussar squadrons (6 figures each)
1 Light gun (3 crew plus limber)

I’ve thought about also¬†having a battalion gun with the main infantry unit but for now I think the light field piece will do.

The first picture suffers for light a bit, but hopefully you get the gist.

 

 

To Horse!

More cavalry for the Medetian expedition to the battlefields of Granprix at this weekend’s Ayton event.

First off, some older cavalry which I’ve finally gotten around to equipping with lance pennons. This is the El Z’teeth regiment¬†(RSM Ottomans) who fought in the sands of Byzarbia a couple of years ago. I contacted GMB Designs to ensure I got some pennons in red and blue (turned out the Silesian Landwehr Uhlans were what I was after). I touched up the white paper edges with appropriate daubs of Vallejo. They enhance the unit nicely and give them a little bit more uniformity – important now they’re off to war in Europe and everyone else is in serried ranks of splendour!

Then we come to a brand new regiment, the Saxon Rutowski Dragoons, who are in the pay of the Kingdom of Fleurie and who will be fighting alongside the Medetians in Granprix. These are Minden Miniatures Austrian dragoons, and lovely figures they are too. After talking with John Ray I came round to the idea of having some historical units among those of my imagi-nations, and this unit appealled both due to its interesting (but not necessarily glorious) history and its attractive colour scheme.

I have had these painted by the very talented James Roach of ‘Olicanalad’ fame, whose painting on his blog has always impressed and inspired me. James kindly fitted¬†these in among other larger commissions he’s working on and has produced a fantastic looking unit. All I’ve done is base them. Little is known about the flag this regiment would have carried, so James created one based on his research and understanding of the Saxon army of the period. I’m delighted with it and hope the first picture does it justice. More unpainted cavalry will certainly be winging its way to Ilkley soon!

 

Obviously with all of these recent additions,¬†I am¬†going to be at serious risk of ‘shiny new unit syndrome’ at Ayton, but at least pretty much everyone else is too!

Latest recruits

With the big Ayton weekend galloping towards us, I’ve been hurrying to base some¬†figures I’ve recently finished¬†painting. So let me introduce Sebastiani’s battalion of converged Medetian Grenadiers, containing a company from each of the first 4 line regiments. This is a 30-strong unit of¬†Huzzah Miniatures.

I’ve also added a unit of Wurttemberg Jager who are in the pay of Fleurie. These are Perry Hessian AWI figures which have lots of variety¬†of pose. I bought a dozen on eBay which were made up of¬†one pack of command and¬†one of Jager. This meant I needed to convert one of the two figures carrying horns, as otherwise the unit would look more musical than martial! He’s not hard to spot, but at least¬†I managed to arm him and paint him as just one of the guys.

 

Next up will be some cavalry, but with the need for some¬†pre-game secrecy I may not post pics of them for a couple of weeks. Can’t let the despicable enemy (you know who you are) have too much information!

Powdered wigs and a bit of lace

Despite a shortage of posts this month I’ve not been completely idle. The figures I’ve been painting recently only had their bases painted this weekend so this is the first opportunity I’ve had to take some pics. Also, with the Ayton multi-player game at the start of May (and more specifically the pre-game campaign that Henry is going to run) there is a requirement for a little discretion about the forces being mustered in case any dastardly enemy spies are operating in Medetia!

Not much to be given away here though, so here are some command and staff figures and a new company of grenadiers from the Vantua Regiment resplendent in their new uniforms and mitres.

Minden Seydlitz figure and one of the mounted colonels. Grenadiers are Huzzah figures.

Minden Nadasty and another mounted colonel.

Nadasty again, showing the use of a bit of Rendera’s plastic fencing for scenery. Lovely stuff to work with, easy to snip bits away and takes a dry brush very nicely.

Seydlistz again, fantastic posing of rider and horse.

The daddy himself. Medetia’s General Barolo who’ll lead the expeditionary force to Grenouisse. Fife and Drum Knyphausen figure, with another Minden colonel.

In the gentlemanly spirit of the age, and for the benefit of any potential enemy agents who may be watching, I will offer the information that each of these pictured luminaries will of course be commanding a full brigade, or more, in the forthcoming campaign.

I wish!

 

A 15mm Diversion

I recently fancied a dabble in a smaller scale, after all the 28mms I’ve been doing lately. I was given some very nice Khurasan 15mm¬†Goth cavalry and command, and already had some Baueda Dark Age (Lombard?) foot command figures to go with them. These are intended as an¬†extra command base, and some¬†‘heroes’ for my Goth army, which are inserted in the middle of¬†a unit to provide some additional characterisation and battlefield punch when playing more ‘heroic’-style historical games. When I get round to¬†certain future Armies of the Month this will make more sense!

In the meantime, while the Khurasan figures are very nice, the basic heavy cavalrymen lacked a bit of drama Рspecifically a lack of cloaks and some very short, insignificant looking swords. An upgrade was in order, so out came the green stuff for 4 cloaks and a couple of sword extensions. Much better. Quick pic below. I just need to squeeze them into the painting schedule somewhere now and they can join the army.

And that reminds me, after¬†my earlier¬†announcement, I’ve only got 5 days left to post January’s Army of the Month.¬†Better get cracking on that!

Cuirassiers join the army

Finished at last! I painted a sample figure for this unit in September 2012 and have finally gotten round to completing them as¬†my first heavy cavalry regiment (Montanelli’s Cuirassiers) for the Medetians of the 18th century. These are¬†Minden Miniatures and they were a pleasure to paint. They’re actually British Heavy Cavalry figures which I admit I chose due to their lighter equipment load (ie. easier painting) compared to the ones from Prussia, Austria and France.

The flag has a clipart griffon and was printed out from MS Excel and highlighted with paint. The uniform is basically buff coats with Medetian pale blue trimmings, which work well together I think.

Although these are now done I admit to thinking about increasing the size of my regular cavalry units, from 12s to 18s – basically to be more in¬†proportion with my¬†infantry battalions (36s). I think 2 squadrons of 6 figures each might look, and be, a little weak compared to their footslogger compatriots so a 3rd squadron may need to be added. Oh well, more painting…!