Wednesday, 29 September 2010

2nd Guards finished

Above is the "whole unit" shot of the finished and based 2nd battalion of guards. Below is a closer shot of some of the bases:

Next is a picture of the officers. The two chaps at front left and front right were originally standard bearers but were converted by the addition of muskets from the foundry French Revolution range (I bought a mob deal a few years ago)
...and lastly some of the rank and file:

Overall, the Army Painter seems to have worked OK and I'll try it on the 1st Guards!
(and yes, this unit was originally going to BE the 1st guards! I just lost track...)

Sunday, 26 September 2010

2nd Guards progress

Two shots of one of the guardsmen. Above is a shot after a sparing coat of Army Painter Strong Tone and a spray fo matt varnish has been applied and allowed to dry for 24 hours. Below is a shot after touching-up the cross belt with some white, re-colouring the hat with GW Badab Black wash and giving a quick coatf of brush-on varnish.
Overall I think the figures came out OK (shot of the whole unit once based).
Lessons learned?
  1. Sparingly applied brushed-on armypainter works well - although I might actually need to be a bit heavier in some parts of the figure
  2. Allow to dry for 48 hours next time as I got a bit of cracking when spraying on varnish after 24 hours.
  3. Whites, cream etc come out looking very "dirty" and really need re-painting. This is more or less of a chore depending on the amount of white on the figure.
  4. Large areas of blue or black look poor after the strong tone treatment. I got away with this on the blue facings but not on some blue trousers or the black hats. I have repainted the trousers and the hats look OK after a Badab Black wash. Next time I'll paint the balck areas dark grey, then army painter, then badab black
  5. Faces look surprisingly good. I was expecting the "dirty" look to be a problem.

So, overall, better than I thought and I'll have a go at the 1st Guard sometime soon. By understanding what is needed to get the best out of the Army Painter I hope the results will be even better.

The effect is still not as good as a fully shaded and highlighted figure, but this will hopefully speed up production of rank and file troops - especially militia!

I guess the real advantage is likely to come when I get back to ancients and medievals. Numidians should be a breeze!


Monday, 20 September 2010

Man's Best Friend

I have completed the first 6 figures for the Lee's Legion Dragoons and have just started on the final six, so hopefully photos will follow at the weekend. The Guards are on hold pending the arrival of my Army Painter which is now in stock and has been sent but will probably arrive tomorrow when everyone is out and will then require a trip into Newark to visit the sorting office!

In the meantime I have painted up this little chap who comes as part of the British Command pack (cut down coats, standing). I'm not really a dog person, but a quick search on line seemd to indicate that he is an american foxhound and so I have attempted to paint an appropriate colour scheme.

At some point he'll make his way onto a command base I expect - or maybe even a base of his own!

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Lee's Legion (3)

Here is the more-or-less finished "Light Horse Harry" Lee. I have opted for a green jacket with brown facings, why?

There are no clear indications of what Lee's Legion wore. They were initially part of the 1st Continetal Light Dragoons which wore either brown coats with green facings OR blue coats with red facings OR both (either at the same time or at different stages of the war). Late in the war, or just after, the Legion are known to have worn buff uniforms with green facings. There are contemporary accounts of Lee's dragoons being gonfused with the cavalry of the British Legion and the Queen's Rangers and as both of these wore green coats I have opted to assume (without further evidence) that Lee may have reversed the colours of his original regiment and gone south with green coats faced brown, as shown, bofore again reversing later in the war - or perhaps the coats were reversible!

I'm happy with this approach, but I don't for a moment claim it is 100% accurate or expect anyone else to follow this colour scheme!

Other angles below:

Monday, 13 September 2010

Lee's Legion (2)

Above are the figures for the light dragoon element of Lee's Legion as described in my earlier post. A few figures have been undercoated before, hence the black bits.

Below are close-ups of "Light Horse Harry" Lee himself:

...and the same figure now I have started painting him!:

I'm not using "dip" on this figure but once th abasics have been done I will use a variety of GW washes and use some other glazes that I'll make myself, before adding highlights.

1st Guards (3)

Quick photo of the 1st Guards awaiting their Army Painter "dip"

Lee's Legion Dragoons

While busy with the Guards I thought I'd start a rebel unit of the southern campaign - Lee's Legion. The Perries make the legion foot but not cavalry - although one could adapt their British Legion figures to do this.

As my own British Legion date back to 2002 or so and were converted from Foundry Continentla Light Dragoons I opted to do a similar job on Lee's cavalry and so I spent some time this weekend with pliers, files and greenstuff. I have produced a figure of Lee himself (British officer with headswap and converted helmet and 12 dragoons including a leader, cornet and standard bearer. Most of the figures are Cont. Lt. Dragoons with converted helmets, but to aid the campaign look I have mixed in some Perry mounted riflemen.

I have researched colour schemes and as Lee's legion were confused with both the British Legion and Queen's Rangers I will go for a green jacket, probably with black facings. The real legion may have been using more practical clothing by this stage (shell jackets/roundabouts, etc) but there is a limit to hom much converting I want to do and I think they'll look just fine. When I get round to doing the Lee's Legion foot I'll also mix in some riflemen to help the units to match. Riflemen will probably get green rifle smocks and leggings (horse) and a mix of green and unbleached linen (foot).

I took some pics of the conversions before undercoating and if I get a chance tonight I'll post them here.

1st Guards (2)

Work has progressed on the Guards I bought at Partizan. I have blocked in the colours on all 30 figures and am now waiting for Mr Postie to deliver some Army Painter String Tone so I can have a go at the "brush on dip, followed by some extra highlight-method" used by Davis Imrie on his Saxon Dog blog.

I'll keep you posted

Friday, 10 September 2010

More Partizan Pics

A variety of shots of my demo game, kindly provided by Henry Hyde of Battlegames.

Cheers, Henry!

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Partizan pictures

A couple of quick shots of my layout at Partizan last weekend, using my heavily doctored terrain tiles and most of my scenery collection. The trees are all home made using the technique I described on the blog a few months ago.

Club night game Pictures

Here we go with a few snaps taken during last night's game. Above the cavalry of Pulaski's Legion watch as the 33rd foot turn to face them. This small cavalry unit, outnumbered and shaken would later repulse an attack by the British Legion dragoons.

Below is a shot of the British battleline a few turns into the game. The 33rd and Pulaski's cavalry can be seen at top left.
Next, a view of the American centre, with continentals holding the fileds and militia in support. In the far distance we can see the British Light Infantry beginning to get themselves isolated:

Below is a view along the American line from their right. This is later in the game and the 2nd Maryland have become disordered, as shown by the red fluffy ball:

Another view of the British, somewhat stalled:

A closer view of the British lines. The Legion cavalry supporting the 1st/71st with the 23rd Royal Welch Fusiliers further to the fron and Royal Artillery looking on:

Towards the end of the game, the musketry of the 33rd supported by 3 pounder artillery proved too much for the 1st Maryland, who broke shortly after:

...and to the right, the 71st took on the 3rd Maryland and overwhelmed them while the von Bose Musketeers can be seen sweeping around the American rear:

A good game overall!

Club night game

We played a fun game of AWI Blackpowder at the club last night. I made up a scenario on the fly, using an 8 x 6 table with lots of woods and a farm and fenced fields across the centre of the board.

The British had the following:
23rd, 33rd, 1/71st, Light Infantry and von Bose Musketeers,
all with the following stats: Large, 8/4/3+/4: Ferocious Charge, Elite, Steady, First Fire
British Legion Dragoons: 6/1/4+/3: Marauders
Hessian Jagers: 3/2/3+/2: Elite, steady, sharp shooters
RA 6pdr section: 1/3.2.1/4+/2 range 48"
RA 3pdr section: 1/3.2.1/4+/2 range 36"
(everyone can skirmish)

Colonel Webster (8) took the 23rd, 33rd, Lights and the 3pdr section, Leslie (8) took the rest and Cornwallis (9) was in command

The Americans had
General Greene (9)
Continental Brigade, Gen Howard (9):
3 battalions of Maryland infantry, each: 6/3/4+/3: First Fire
2 sections of 6 pdr artillery: 1/3.2.1/4+/2 rage 48"

Virginia militia Brigade, Gen Stevens (7)
3 battalions of militia, each: 4/3/5+/3: Wavering
1 rifle battalion, each: SMALL 3/2/5+/2
1 cavalry unit: SMALL 4/2/5+/2

Carolina militia Brigade, Gen Caswell (7)
units as above

The Americans deployed their continentals in the centre and one militia brigade on each flank. The British formed a line of battle and attempted to advance; the plan being somewhat frustrated by some poor dice rolling that saw a lot of inaction compounded by Webster's brigade taking a blundering move to the right (let's do the Timewarp, yeah) in front of Leslie's men. Meanwhile the light infantry had move up to the militia and done some real damage, but with no support they became isolated and eventually accumulated too much damage and routed.

The British did finally pull themselves together, but not before the 23rd Fusiliers had also become exposed and were routed and the Legion cavalry charged a smaller unit of American cavalry that was already shaken and STILL contrived to lose the combat at flee the field... Eventually though the von Bose Musketeers drove in the American militia on one flank before turning to wrap up the line just as the 71st arrived in front. The final turn before we packed up saw the continental infantry routed by some very shot-up British.

Pretty close to the real battles of the AWI in fact.

I deliberately kept the scenario simple as the players were either quite or totally new to Black Powder. I would normally rate Webster as a 9 and was probably too generous to Greene and Howard, but it all seemed to work. We now just need to train Laurence to roll LOW for orders and HIGH for firing/combat/break-tests and not the other way around!

I did take a few snaps so hopefully I'll post these and some Partizan pics tonight.


Monday, 6 September 2010

1st Guards (1)

Right, fresh start. I have a couple of projects on and I am trying to give each one about an hour every night in the week and then see what I can get done at the weekends too.

One project is painting up some new AWI stuff with the aim being to add units suitable for the southern campaigns of 1780-81, so lots of scruffiness and floppy hats. The current unit is the 1st battalion of the Guards brigade - a composite of men provided by each company of the King's Footguard regiments. I am opting to use standing/firing figures for each of the two battalions while using charging figures when I get round to doing the guards grenadiers.

I therefore spent some time in the garage with five blisters of Perry figures and a couple of files, removing flash. I have used the British infantry in cut-down coats and have two blisters of firing line, two of standing and the command (standing ) blister. The last comes with two standard bearers and the Guardfs do not seem to have used standards so I took these otherwise useless figures and gave each one a musket to hold in his open hand - using stuff I have stashed in a useful AWI "bits box". The muskets originally came from a Foudry Horde deal of French Revolution figures, that has also provided some of my AWI militia.

All 30 of the figures, plus a dog, have been glued to little rectangles of card with some PVA glue ready for undercoating with chocolate brown paint - may favoured undercoat for most AWI figures.

Sunday, 5 September 2010

Partizan Game

No photos tonight as I can't summon the energy after a very busy day at Partizan. The game went very well and the Black Powder rules flowed perfectly. The initial British attack caused half the militia to evaporate, however the units that remained proved intransigent and were well supported by some artillery. The von Bose hessians fought a melee that lasted four rounds before the milita fell back in disorder leaving the poor germans shaken and in need of some rallying.

The British flank attack under Colonel Webster proved more successful but experienced sopme slow going through the woods, with successive lines of rebel skirmishers leapfrogging each other in a slow retreat. The loyalist brigade did pretty well, doing at least as well as the bulk of the British regulars.

There seemed to be a lot of interest in the game and a fair few people asking questions. I hope that it has sparked a little more interest in gaming the AWI.

Purchases at the show were limited to some blisters of British in cut-down coats to make the beginnings of the Brigade of Guards.

Saturday, 4 September 2010

Reinforcements for Partizan

Some last minute arrivals for the demo game have just made it off the painting table. First are two British command stand, a brigade commander above and an army general (and hounds) below:
...and the von Bose musketeers finally make it after several years of trying!

The flags are my normal efforts, printed onto ordinary paper and then over-painted. These have quite a tricky design that I have somewhat simplified. The flag cords are from Front Rank.

Hope to see you at the show tomorrow. Doors open 10-4.

Friday, 3 September 2010

Partizan Scenario

What ho!

I have been giving some thought to a scenario for Sunday's game at Partizan and have come up with the following "counterfactual" (i.e. made-up "what if") situation:

January 1781.
Following the loss of Charlestown and the capitulation of General Lincoln in the previous year, a new rebel southern army had been formed under Washington's close ally , General Nathaneal Greene. Bringing together the Maryland continentals, the Carolinas militia and light troops under Daniel Morgan and William Washington, Greene conducted a cat and mouse campaign against Cornwallis in the autumn of 1780 before both armies entered winter quarters. As 1781 opened, Greene was made aware that General Horatio Gates "the hero of Sartoga" was intriguing amongst members of congress in an effort so secure the southern command for himself. Realising the need to secure his position, Greene resolved to engage in open battle with the British and took position in the vicinity of Charlotte, NC. The rebel troops were disposed in terrain advantageous to defence and dared Cornwallis to attack...

Essentially this verison of history means that the Battle of Camden never happened and this battle will be an alternate version with similar troops but a different battlefield and a slightly more organised and experienced rebel army.