Friday, January 19, 2018

10mm Blucher Austrians

I had mentioned in a previous post that one of the projects I hope to finish off are my Blucher starter armies. I purchased figures for Sam Mustafa's sample scenario ("Along the Danube"), both Austrians and French. I have a good majority of the Austrians done, and the French...well...they are purchased and sitting in bags.My figures are all Old Glory 10mm, which are very nice sculpts in my opinion. I based all "brigades" on a 60x30mm base. The plan is to place a thin 60x40mm laminated cardboard sabot underneath with the remaining exposed 10mm having unit identifiers and stats.

I started trying different painting techniques with these guys. I primed an off white, inked with sepia and then went over the straps and large uniform sections with bright white. I went with speed over detail with the infantry. I was happy with how they turned out.

Also, I apologize in advance for the shoddy photography. With the winter sun, I have a limited amount of natural light and was trying to rush to get some decently lit photos. I may have jiggled a bit with the camera. I ended up tossing alot of photos involving other projects. I will try to revisit these figures when I have more optimal light and steadier hands.

Here are some German infantry in helmet. Each brigade depicts two regiments in the same facings. The figures are on 5-figure strips, each brigade has 6 strips to a base.

Same two brigades from the rear.

Here are some Hungarian infantry in their shakos and blue pants. I must have accidentally ordered/received French command strips for my Austrian Hungarian infantry. I thought something was odd but painted them up anyway, when i finally looked at the package label I realized my error. You can miniature Austrian Imperial eagles on the fanions. Oh well....

And another rear shot..

Some Grenadiers.

And a rear shot showing their bearskin bags..

Austrian artillery in brown, very smart looking...

White coated Austrian kuirassiers

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Ironic Inspiration...

I received my copy of Wargames, Soldiers and Strategy in the mail today. As I was thumbing through the magazine, I cam across an article on painting 10mm dark ages figures. Accompanying the article were some photos of beautifully painted 10mm Picts. I don't have any Picts yet but have often been tempted by Pendraken's awesome range...the eye candy got me motivated to tackle my 10mm dark age armies sooner rather than later and I was grateful for the inspiration provided by the author and his finely painted army.

Anyway, as I read the article I saw this very blog mentioned! I forgot that the author, Paul Burkin, had emailed me months ago to kindly ask my permission for him to mention the blog. I completely forgot!!!! At any rate, I want to thank Paul for his incredibly kind words regarding my blog and also thank him for providing me with inspiration with his amazingly painted Picts! Thanks Paul!

Friday, January 12, 2018

2018's Projects: Decisions to make

2018 is upon us and I am faced with the question of which projects to purchase, to embark on, which to resume and which I will abandon and sell off. Since I like to march to the beat of a different drum, I often collect projects that my gaming club would consider exotic and even when I collect armies for rules they use, I do it in a different scale! This means, I often collect both sides of a conflict. My 10mm WW1 project is close to complete, although I need more scenery and will ultimately odd some more units. Some of my planned projects (in no particular order) for 2018 are:

1) Finish off my 10mm French and Austrian Napoleonic armies for Blucher.
2) 15mm Renaissance Italian Condottiere armies for Kings of War Historical
3) Finish off my 28mm Frostgrave Warband
4) 15mm Carlist War armies for Blackpowder or Lasalle
5) More 15mm Irregular Wars armies
6) 10mm League of Augsburg
7) 15mm French Wars of Religion
8) Resume my 15mm Biblical armies or sell them off and pursue the project in 10mm
9) 15mm Revolutionary War for Maurice
10) 3mm WW2 Desert War for Rommel
11) Finish off my 10mm Dark Ages Britain for Dux Bellorum
12) And so many more others.....

So many projects, so much lead, so little time!!!!

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Blood, Sweat and Cheers

I have always been interested in "wargaming" gladiator combat but never found rules that I liked. Recently I purchased "Blood, Sweat and Cheers" by Nic Wright. Nic is the author of one of my favorite rulesets, "Irregular Wars" so I felt pretty confident I would like his take on Gladiator combat. BSC is a card driven game with two pages of rules, thats the type of game design I like! Next I needed some Gladiators, I preferred Crusader Miniatures range as they don't look fanciful and have a great style to the sculpting. I am not a fan of 28mm in general but these were very enjoyable to paint up. Here are my first three completed fighters:

 Hoplomachus on the left and Thraex on the right.

 My Murmillo on the left against the Thraex, a traditional enemy. I hand painted the design on the Thraex shield, which is from the North Star Jugula gladiator accessory pack.

Same pair, different angle. I used two white snake decals on the Murmillo shield, which is also a North Star shield. 

Blue Murmillo versus Purple Hoplomachus. Another traditional matchup.

The full lineup so far, more to come. Hopefully I can get some practice games in sooner rather than later.

...and now the Kaiser's Finest...

After finishing three French regiments (9 battalions) along with some divisional cavalry and artillery assets, I moved onto some Germans. The process for the Germans hasn't been quite as efficient or speedy as it was for the French. I haven't been prepping figures in advance during so I haven't been able to move from painting one battalion to the next. Right now I have six German battalions painted and based and am working on French regimental commanders and a mix of French and German artillery batteries. Anyway, here are some Magister Militum 10mm Germans kitted out for 1914:

Here is a battalion with four company stands, an HMG detachment and a battalion command stand.

Closeup of some German infantry in advancing pose. I used a Micron brush marker to paint helmet straps, red regimental markings on the helmet, red uniform piping and backpack straps. I added some mustaches to a few of the guys. I may add more later.

As you can see the chap in the middle has a neatly trimmed mustache.

Heavy machine gun detachment. Magister Militum HMGs are a single casting and very easy to paint and base. I like that.

 Battalion commander stand. The fellow on the left has a bugle and rifle. The officer on the right is gripping a sword and looking thru binoculars.

Magister Militum have two officer poses per pack, here is the other officer in a very martial looking pose.

A view of the backpacks, straps were "painted" on with a marker.

A few people have asked me why I use thick bases. There are three reasons: 1) I find them easy to move and handle, 2) I like the look and 3) It allows me to paint unit markings on the back of the bases in a subtle fashion. Here are two companies from "Red" regiment, the one on the left belongs to white battalion and the one on right is yellow battalion. A very easy way to know which companies belong to which regiment and battalion which is important for purposes of battalion and regimental morale for the rules I use.

I hope to have more updates with more pictures of painted artillery and officers and German cavalry!

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Pendraken, Magister Militum and Kallistra Comparison

Since deciding to go with the limited (but beautiful) Magister Militum range for my 1914 project, I've been trying to figure out ways to fill out gaps in the figures I would need. MM Crimean War Zouaves and generals should make decent enough counterparts for WW1. One item that I sorely needed were dismounted dragoons and uhlans. Pendraken have some dismounted options and so do Kallistra.

I ordered some Pendraken figures and was disappointed to see how small and slight they compared to MM. I then ordered some Kallistra. Well, they arrived in the mail today and, as I had promised, decided to post a comparison picture of the three ranges:

(L-R: Pendraken Dragoon kneeling, MM infantry kneeling, Kallistra Dragoon kneeling, Pendraken Dragoon standing, MM infantry standing, Kallistra dragoon standing)

As you can see for yourself, the Pendraken are considerably smaller than the Magister Militum and even more so than the Kallistra. I'd say the difference in difference is the same going from Pendraken to MM as it is to go from MM to Kallistra. The MM and Kallistra are virtually the same height kneeling, although the standing poses do show more of the size difference. I think I will probably go with the Kallistra dismounted dragoons and uhlans to complement my Magister Militum armies, however I will probably just stick to MM conversions for everything else I need.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Strelets 1/72 Napoleon in Egypt

I don't often paint figures bigger than 15mm and I rarely paint plastics, however I was intrigued with Strelets' "Napoleon in Egypt" range so I picked up a few boxes to make up some French, Mameluke and British armies. I plan to ultimately game with them using the Maurice rules. 

I had to travel for work quite a bit this past year and my hours allowed me some idle time. I wanted to be able to get in some painting time so I didn't feel like my work trips were a black hole for my hobby progress. I decided that the Strelets would be the ideal travel companion since they are light and don't really break to easy. 

Here are some of the "Light Infantry" which seem to be French in their tropical uniforms. I opted to paint these guys in pink because how many chances does one get to paint pink uniforms and be historically correct? 

Here is a closeup, the sculpts are good but some of the details aren't crisp. I primed all of these figures with a gloss black fusion primer. It really bonds to the plastic, and I should mention that I typically rinse these guys with vinegar prior to priming. I read someplace that it gives some bite for the paint to stick to. After priming with black, I drybrush with grey to pick out details and begin painting.

Another closeup of these pink-clad warriors.

Some French in the more traditional revolutionary-era uniforms of the 1790s. I added some striped trousers for revolutionary effect.

A shot from the rear showing off backpacks and the such...

Here are my four completes units. I tried to keep similar poses in each unit: marching, advancing, charging and firing. At some point I will finish up the French and tackle the British and Mamelukes.