Sunday 29 March 2015

More Spanish infantry & a happy coincidence!

Two more battalions of Early Peninsular War Spanish painted for Tony this week, another white coated line battalion of 22 foot and a mounted officer, with blue facings (Tony's description was a kind of Man City blue), slightly darker than the Irish guys painted last time, and a light battalion of 18 figures. A pleasure to paint and I have now established a set method for painting these white uniforms, reverting back to a black undercoat before base coating all white areas with Foundry Arctic Grey shade. This is the perfect grey shade for white uniforms and will shade the white quite subtly where left to show slightly.

Flames of War.
It's been a miserable weekend here weather wise, heavy rain and strong winds, so I set myself a painting challenge. I'm still working through the FoW 'Open Fire' box set, having got the Allies up to a reasonable tabletop standard I undercoated three Stugs, the pak 40's and crews plus eight bases of Panzergrenadiers with the intention of getting them finished over the weekend! I'm almost there but the infantry are not yet finished. I'm in no rush with these really though, and I tend to only work on them at weekends. Great fun though and it's slowly coming together. The tanks were my very first attempt at 'soft camo' and after a lot of trial and error I was happy enough to settle for this.

Memoir 44
It occurred to me the other day that all of the FoW stuff could also be used to play Memoir 44 just as it is. I enjoy memoir but the scale of the supplied playing pieces bothers me, 20mm figures towering over little tanks!

So I got the Memoir 44 board out to check and it works. I know I will enjoy the game so much more with these new pieces, and it's a continuation of something I started a couple of years back. So I now have the choice of playing both sets of rules using the same figures. I'll use the old markers to score hits as before rather than removing casualties. I'll also be ordering the 'breakthrough'  expansion with it's 17 x 13 hex boards.

All in all a productive weekends painting ..... and the sun is just finally beginning to come through!

Vintage Waterloo.
Next week I'm painting for John, more Hinton Hunt cavalry for both sides plus a lot more Rebs. The following week I will turn my attention to 'Vintage Waterloo' as I now have no less than 10 battalions/regiments in hand for that game, commissioned by Roy with 1 further British battalion for Ian. I'll work things out and post some details of the units I have to paint as there are some wonderful units to represent here.

Saturday 21 March 2015

20mm ACW's & Hinton Hunt conversions.

I enjoyed painting through some of John's wonderful ACW's this week, although I must confess I initially found it hard to get started on them probably due to my head being full of Napoleonic 'stuff' in this Waterloo anniversary year. Once underway I was fine and as usual from John there is a vast selection of castings and manufacturers to choose from. The 79th New York (Highlanders) will I'm sure cut a dash in any ACW battle! I have never been a kilt painter, but overall they turned out well I think.

Lovely castings, this pic taken before final details added.

A touch of red here and there lifts ACW figures a bit more I find - mental note to self: add officers cuff braid!

The advancing Yanks at right shoulder shift arms are by Qualticast and superb in my opinion, the standard bearers are conversions and very neatly done, as is the officer behind them with frock coat added from green stuff and sword added over shoulder. I will get a close of him later.

My trusty old desk lamp! Not much left of the original, fitted new bulb holder for the 35watt spiral I like to use for painting - always for me it's 6400k more usually known as 'daylight' or 'SAD' as it gives a very crisp light in the blue spectrum. Note the professional 'hood' attached by selotape.
On Monday I'll be starting two more battalions of  early Peninsular Spanish for Tony, one line and one light this time. I thought I would give you a look at these crisp shiny castings from the lights, they always paint up very well.

Among the units I have in my 'in tray' is a unit of French light cavalry for 'Vintage Waterloo' these being the 1st Regiment of Chasseurs who wore the light lancer style helmet. Roy has done a sterling job of the conversions, removing the lance from the HH light lancer castings and adding a flattened pin sword, should produce a fine and unique regiment of cavalry. I also have the Cumberland Hussars in hand and a couple of units of Cuirassiers scheduled down the line, all Hinton Hunt figures I believe, so there should be plenty of cavalry on the field when the day comes. These are 12 figure units. Let's hope the Hussars hang around a bit longer than they did historically!

Sunday 15 March 2015

C&C Expansion 5 and US Paras.

I was delighted to read this morning that the long awaited Command & Colors expansion 5 - Generals, Marshals, Tacticians - has made the cut!  Read here - sounds like a lot in the box including a new pack of 90 command cards, 50 new  'tactical cards' and the main pack also now includes 'take command' cards.

Flames of War.
I spent an enjoyable couple of hours yesterday getting a bit of paint on my 15mm  FoW US paras, very quick job, followed by a magic wash, a quick touch up and then matt varnish. This morning I started the basing. I'm only looking for an overall look here, not intended for close inspection, but I'm pleased how they are turning out so far. The platoon consists of 32 figures :-

  • 6 bases of rifle/MG guns.
  • 1 mortar base
  • 1 bazooka base
  • 1 command base

Tomorrow I'll be painting the 79th New York for John, looking forward to seeing what I can do with the kilts, This is the 'before' picture, the castings are by Drebbeler.

Friday 13 March 2015

Flames of War & Young Guard for Waterloo.

As I have finished off and posted the three completed battalions for Roy intended for 'Vintage Waterloo' (and I still have four more in the pipeline!), I thought it might be nice to spend a day painting something for myself for a change. I mentioned that I had bought the Flames of War starter set 'Open Fire' - which is basically a complete late WW2 game in a box in 15mm scale - and was gradually putting it all together. That stage is complete, it's been a lot of fun and I have now finished building no less than 8 Sherman tanks ( 2 platoons of 3, plus 2 command tanks), with each platoon featuring a 'firefly' Sherman fitted with a 17pdr gun. A platoon of US Airborne with support weapons and command completes the Allied force. For the Germans you get 2 platoons of Grenadiers including rifle/machine gun teams supported by Panzerfaust and Panzershreck teams, an anti gun platoon consisting of 2 Pak 40's and a platoon of 3 Stug tanks. Once it's all assembled you definitely get a feeling of value for money, for £40.00 you get a lot of stuff in the box, right down to markers and 2 sets of dice, green and grey.

I took a few pics of everything before I get started, I hope to get the US Airborne painted and finished over the weekend plus get the initial washes on the Shermans. I'll be going for a quick paint job and will use washes where I think it will speed things up a bit.

I also took a couple of pics of the 20mm Young Guard battalion of Hinton Hunt figures before I packed everything up for posting. This code was quite challenging due to the position of the musket, but they turned out very well I think.

I spotted and corrected the officers unpainted collar during my final checks!

Just as well I enjoy a glass of wine or two!!

Tuesday 10 March 2015

1815 Young Guard.

I'm getting more of a feel now for painting 'vintage' figures in 20mm. If you have been used to painting  more 'modern' castings with heavily raised detail such as belts and straps and deep undercuts then it can be a bit of a shock when you first paint a Hinton Hunt figure. But with work they can paint up very well indeed.

This is the first half of a Young Guard battalion for Roy. It took a bit of time to build these up, but the results are worth it I think. Still needs musket straps and pom poms etc but that will be done once the other 12 figures are finished off. You can see from the casting (Hinton Hunt code FN 77 on base) how the musket tends to 'wrap' around the body somewhat, but once painted they look OK.

Need to check a few small details but should be a nice battalion once completed. As usual blues don't reproduce well in pics, actual shade is closer to the shade of blue of the officer figure below.

These are intended for 'Vintage Waterloo'. In addition to these three units I have another Prussian battalion coming, together with two regiments of HH cavalry, plus a battalion of British from Ian as I was keen to paint some redcoats again! I also have 20mm ACW's to paint and understand that more Spanish are also on the way soon, busy time ahead but I'm really enjoying my painting at the moment and not being distracted by personal projects so production is good.

Saturday 7 March 2015

More 1815 Prussians & a new game!

While I'm working through a 24 figure battalion of 1815 Young Guard for Roy I thought I would post a few of the recent 'production pics' of the first two battalions. I kept the blue of the line battalion quite dark, but I was very interested to see how 'Wellington Man' interpreted the Prussian blue uniform (blog now in my list of blogs at right), and I'm very tempted to 'lift' Roy's slightly! Figures are 20mm Hinton Hunt.

The lighter colour uniform is the British supplied 'Portuguese' uniform and will make a nice contrast to the line units.

Next week I will be painting more 20mm figures for Old John, a return to the ACW starting with the 79th New York Highlanders. This plate made me laugh, I'm not sure they looked like this for very long!

And finally .... I have found myself something to play around with as I continue to paint for others. This time not an impulsive purchase, I thought about it for at least two weeks before taking the plunge! Having obtained the 'Flames of War' rule book on ebay some time back I was surprised reading through it just how much I managed to absorb, and I was gradually drawn into it. The clincher though was discovering the fantastic 'Open Fire' box set, which for £40.00 contains everything you need to get started in late war period WW2.

So I thought I would make a feature of putting the entire box contents together and then painting it, no doubt over the course of a few weeks, as there's a lot in the box!

If you have not seen the 'Open Fire' box set yet, this short video features the games designer Phil Yates taking delivery of the newly released set, (in rather plush offices I must say!), and takes you through whats in it.

Wednesday 4 March 2015

1815 Prussians progress.

There has been a lot happening on the domestic front recently so the blog has been ignored somewhat. But painting continues - I'm currently painting 1815 Prussians commissioned by Roy, and these units will be used in Ian's planned 'Vintage Waterloo' game. Quick preview here, but I will take more photos once fully completed. I always do final checks to see if I have missed anything before I pack them up, so things like buttons missing or oversized all get tidied up at the same stage.

There is a 24 figure Prussian line battalion, a 24 figure battalion wearing British issued (I think)  Portuguese Peninsular style uniform and a 24 figure Young Guard battalion. I hope to have these three battalions finished over the weekend and on parade for the pre packing photoshoot!