Guild Xmas Buddy Build

I've only a small number of post-WW2 African troops, so The Guild Christmas buddy item I received was quite a change to my normal fare.

The task was a JB Land Rover and the objective was "if you could make it open topped its for an African militia could be civilian or military in colour - battered is the preferred look"

Since I've done lots of military vehicles I went for a civilian version. I've seen quite a few African vehicles where the bonnet (hood) is lashed down so I added some strapping across the front and move the spare wheel to the rear.

One of the rules was that the item couldn't be posted until Christmas day, so here it is.


French Selection

Catching up on the backlog before the Christmas festivities.

First off some various French vehicles. At the front a Laffly AMD 80 armoured car that was obsolete so by 1940 it was operating in North Africa, hence the distinctive camouflage scheme. They did however get involved in Tunisia in 1943. Behind is a Laffly V15T 4x4 truck, a lovely model, which like the armoured car is a Cromwell model. Behind are a couple of Renault R35's made by Milicast.

Next is a couple of really superb models by Alby, both of the Somua S35 under original French ownership and the other as used by the Germans. Both only comprised five parts the hull, two track units, turret (including crewman) and an arial.

Finally not quite French, but they did use them late war a M8 Greyhound armoured car by Milicast. I'm still struggling with the ring mount on the M20s.

Merry Christmas everyone.


Bavarian Carabiniers

Having completed most of my War of Spanish Succession cavalry forces using the Strelets figures I had a quandary over how to use the excellent Zvezda Russian Dragoons. The Prinz Phillip Carabiniers were the obvious answer as they "replaced" the existing Bavarian dragoons after Blenheim. The great thing about the pack, apart from the sculpting is that there are enough parts to provide both mounted and dismounted versions of the unit. There are a couple of figures left over so the officer will become a general. Still got to decide what to do with the other pack/unit.


SYW Hanoverian Artillery

The Hanoverian Artillery in the SYW had an unusual coloured uniform so once I had discovered it I had to add it to my collection, even though I don't have any Hanoverian (yet!). However I do have Hesse Kassel and Brunswick forces to go with my AWI British to make some sort of force and these will provide their support.

The guns shown are Prussian, I need to sort out some appropriate models and paint them in red, the Hanoverian colour.

In the background are my two new long city walls sections


Camel Corps

Here are my last two colonial units from this painting spree. On the left the Egyptians and on the right the British. All are HaT figures except a few from Waterloo 1815 used to make up the numbers.

Each unit consists of six figures and can be deployed mounted or dismounted.


SOGGy day in Clevedon (2)

Looking out the window of the glider I could see our target in the Moonlight, the bridge over the Orne canal. It all looked quiet.

Moments later our three gliders landed and we stormed into the defences on the east side of the bridge only losing a couple of men in the process.

While most of the force dealt with the defenders one glider load charged straight across the bridge to take out the defenders holding an emplacement and the cafe.

Our biggest problem was these marders, whcih kept out of range, until by an oversight they moved in range and bang one was lost and the other rapidly fled the scene for a couple of moves

Here comes the cavalry, Shermans of the 13/18th Hussars supported by a M10. Just slightly further behind were the commandoes

Eliminating the german armour while a typhoon provides overwatch, the commandoes can be seen at the bottom
Sorry about the fuzzy couple of pictures


SOGGy day in Clevedon (1)

Just had a weekend down in Somerset visiting family, and more importantly participating in a Society Of Gentlemen Gamers event in Clevedon. There was a choice of three games, all based in 1944:

Pegasus bridge

Merville Battery

and Operation Hands up, the award winning game from the MADgamers

I would have happily played all three, but lack of time meant I had to choose one and Pegasus bridge it had to be

Unfortunately due to the weather there were a number of no shows so only two out of three games were played, which was a real shame


On the Workbench - December 2010

The end of the year is rapidly approaching so this month will be mainly catching up with various odd and ends and finishing the last of the haul from Crewe (WW2 French vehicles). Also time will be limited as Christmas activities take over.
  • Complete the US vehicles (the M8 Greyhounds and 2 x M20). I got slightly put off by how the MG mounting could be firmly fixed in place, so I haven't started them yet.
  • Complete the British and Egyptian camel units. By contrast these are virtually finished and should appear in the next couple of days.
  • SYW Hanoverian Artillery - something of an impulse paint as I spotted the uniforms while checking for something else.
  • WW2 French Vehicles (AMD80 armoured car, Laffy V15T 4x4 truck, 2 x French Renault R35, Somua S35 and a Renault D2##)
  • War of Spanish Sucession Bavarian Prinz Philip Carabiniers

## The Renault D2 will not be painted by me but will be done as part of a buddy build over on the Guild. I have to work on a Mercenary Landrover in exchange


The Navy's here

Having already mentioned that I had acquired two each of the Hat Colonial guns here is the last of the set, The Naval Gardiner guns. Rather than put them on their field mountings (as I already Have a Jacklex model) I went for the ship mounted version.

So here is a Naval landing party being landed from a very small gunboat!
If necessary the Gardiners can be placed in the back of wagons

If the gunboat seems familiar see here and here


Back from Andreivia

Yesterday's excusion to Meols saw me in command of a platoon of Spetznaz tasked with capturing the airport at Tcherbevan from the local Andreivian forces under cover of darkness. Ordering my two section commanders to provide covering fire I sped down the runway in my BMD heading for the radar station and SAM missile site, as I neared the SAM Corporal Ianavitch opened up with his AGS-17 grenade launcher and luckily distroying it. This of course resulted in my squad being iluminated by the burning propellant for the rest of the game. I managed to drive the Andreivian airport security forces out of the radar station and Corporal Connaloffski captured the Control Tower. However we were then pinned down and our BMDs eliminated by an Andreivian relief force supported by a T62.

My BMD explodes

More details can be found over on the Andrevian Tales blog


Off to Meols in the morning!

For those who are not aware there is a Help for Heroes event being held at St John's Church in Meols, Wirral, Merseyside, CH47 0LF tomorrow (Saturday 27th November). It's an Andrevia game titled "Spetsnaz At Tcherbevan" being organised by Richard Crawley of the SOTCW, so if you are anywhere in the area please drop in and show your support. It'll be great to see you.



Gordon Highlanders

Another collection of HaT Colonials, this time their Highlanders painted as the 92nd foot. These were started at the same time as the Indians, but painting the tartan significantly increased the time taken.

The groundwork is something of an experiment as during a clear out I found some old wallpaper that looked usable. It normally looks brownish, but in the harsh morning light it is almost white, so it will certainly be painted.


Back to fight the Zulus

Having obtained two of each of the HaT colonial gun sets it was obvious that as well as one for the later colonial period I would depict the earlier version, particularly for the Zulu war period, to provide more gaming options. The smoothbore is simply Royal Artillery, but the Gatling and heliograph are depicted as part of my "North Mendip Regiment"
My Zulu rules are over on the Free Wargames Rules site (link)


Warboot - Stockport

Well Warboot was a tale of two halves. On the negative I sold very little of my stuff because of the regular curse of Warboot, not enough buyers. On the positive I bought two Airfix Bren carriers, another German recon set, a pair of Stugs, a Matchbox 251/1 and a SM79.

Then nearing the close of business I picked up over 50 painted vehicles (below) at a very good price, I now need to decide what to do with them all! some I'll add to my 1/76 collection and the rest I'll sell/trade to cover my petrol and table costs.

It was also nice to meet up with a lot of friendly faces, and regret taking sandwiches when the smell of cooking bacon wafted through the room.


Zvezda Art of Tactics figures

Having brought one set of all the figures boxes I couldn't resist having a good look and assembling them.

Each infantry box has 2 sprues each of 5 infantrymen in three poses, plus a large multi base and five small bases. The bases are quite chunky so I won't be using them. The figures are quite nicely sculpted and will certainly add some variety to my forces.

The MG sets were really what I was after. The German is an excellent representation of a low tripod mounted MG34, but the rear legs of the tripod is quite difficult to fit, but the overall effect is excellent, the only downside is that the No2 has binoculars rather than ammo belts. The Russian Maxim set much easier and the downside here is that the wheels are solid rather than spoked.

Some more details are on the Zvezda Art of Tactic site


Colonial Reinforcements

Just mustered ready for the next campaign on the North West Frontier or other such places

Royal Artillery - a Smoothbore gun and Gatling backed up by a heliograph team, all figures by Hat

My Sikhs, two strong companies ready to march into the hills, again Hat figures.


IPMS - Telford

After many years of dithering I finally made my way to the big IMPS show at Telford. Conclusions:
  • Very expensive to get in £9 plus another £3 on top for parking
  • Very busy, at some stands you had to queue to get in.
  • Very well managed B&B (kit swap) but very slow, but at least this puts off the trader trawling you see at wargames shows.
  • Enough 20mm wargames traders, including some you never see at (wargames) shows, e.g. Matador and Wespe. These two reflected the difference in style; Wespe had all their models out on display so you could see how good they were; Matador virtually nothing was visible.
  • Lots of clubs showing their creations, but all very samey, except for a few who obvious gave some thought. In particular the Biggles theme, where every model was linked back to an episode in a Biggles book, and laid out with the extract. The Dunkirk theme was good, but needed more text. It was quite sad, a lot of excellent models, but with no explanation of why each model was unique and the modellers didn't want to get involved, just like the worst sort of demo games at wargames shows.
  • An interesting point was that the clubs were not selling their surplus stuff under the table like at the South Cheshire Militaire (Crewe) presumably they have been told they have to use the B&B.
  • Airfix, Revell and Dragoon/Italeri/Zvezda had stands so it was interesting to see some details of what is forthcoming suc as the Bedford QLT from Airfix, nice , the 88mm quick build from Italeri and the fast build Tiger I from Zvezda, impressive.
  • Inspiration - very little, but nice to see what is appening in the wider hobby

Overall a good day out, but, not enough to tempt me again for quite a few years. Acquisitions were quite few.

  • A brace of Matchbox 251/1s
  • An Esci 251/7, which will donate it's pioneer bridge to one of the above and be resold as a 251/1
  • Some greenstuff
  • A pack each of the new Zvezda "Art of Tactic" figures, which I'll consider in another post.

For another view and some pictures see Dampf's modelling page


More Axis vehicles for North Africa

Here's the last of my Axis North African stuff from the stash
In the front a CV33 flamethrower from an unknown manufacturer (not Skytrex) followed by an Alby Fiat 508c Militaire. Second row an Airfix sdkfz 222, another CV33, and a Cromwell Fiat Dovenque. At the back a Matchbox sdkfz 11, Airfix kubelwagen and a matchbox BMW.

There was quite a bit of work on the CV33 to get the fit correct and they are quite different from my existing Skytrex versions, which causes me a problem as I need one more ordinary CV33 to finish the RF company. The Alby Fiat 508 was so nice to build, I wish I'd found the model a few years back, in time for the big Battleaxe game. The Dovenque was difficult to get squared up and also a bit fragile so I have based it and not bothered with the tilt.

No crews yet apart from the kubel as I done have any suitable figures.


US Tank Destroyers

After an early distraction because of flaking paint on some colonials, I settled down and finished my US tracked armour.

The pair of Milicast M18 Hellcats were something of a PITA as the resin was quite soft, the worst was that if you held the turret by the gun barrel for long enough it would begin to droop just with the heat of your fingers. There were also quite a lot of poor alignment of parts so filing and filling was needed. By comparison the Milicast M8 HMC was a firm resin and went together easily. The unfortunate part was that the wheels for the trailer were missing so I have put it to one side. These were old second hand kits so I suspect they reflect the standards of the time. The M10A1 was from Cromwell and a much more recent model as it was in the pale cream resin and assembled quickly.

Also no prizes for spotting the mistake that crept in somehow.


Warboot 4.1 - Stockport 21/11/10‏

I'll be attending this event and selling off my mate's books and also all the stuff on my trading and sale lists (link).

Details for those who might be interested from Paul Reids at MAWS

hi all
warboot the tabletop sales event will be held at
The North West Gaming Centre nov 21st
1st Floor, Hallam Business Centre,
Hallam Street
from 12 noon- 4pm
entry £1 each
tables £5 each
to book your table please e-mail paulreid28@hotmail.com
remember no commision is taken unlike bring and buys
..regards paul


On the workbench - November 2010

Not bad progress last month, but I have still not decided what format to use for the legation walls for next years Peking game. Matakishi's Tea House has some useful ideas for gardens (see the bottom of the Afghan compounds article)
A slight change of emphasis this month as I concentrate on Colonials and continue to clear my WW2 vehicle stash.
  • Finish the two long city wall sections
  • One each of the Hat Gatling, Gardiner and Field Guns for Zulu (red) and later colonial (khaki)
  • A unit of Highlanders (khaki)
  • A unit of Indians (khaki)
  • British and Egyptian camel units.
  • Various WW2 US vehicles, a pair of M18 Hellcats, a M10 Wolverine, a M8 Greyhound and a pair of M20.
  • At the bottom of my box I found a pair of Italian CV33 light tanks and an Fiat 508C militaire, so a bit more of a boost for my desert as the Fiat Duvenque is almost finished.
  • Finally to keep on the desert theme a sdkfz 7 plus the sdkfz 222 and kubelwagen from the Airfix Reece set.

Feels a bit ambitious, but as the nights draw in I can't do much else. No shows to go to either, but I will be participating in a SOTCW "Andreivian Tales" charity game at Meaols on the Wirral on the 27th and trying to clear some stuff at the next Warboot at Stockport on the 21st.


Afrika Korps - Reece troops

As well as finishing the sdkfz 222 and 231 I also completed the four preassembled Skytrex kubelwagens bought at Derby. The two armoured cars are Alby models, which are very well detailed

In the background are the two extra wall sections I am working on for use as the tartar wall at Peking.


Fiasco Leeds

It was an early start to get to Leeds from the other side of the Pennines. But we made it in sufficient time to get set up before the show opened (The clock change was a great help). For various reasons the Lance & Longbow Society game was Fornovo 1495, a game that I've played before. In concept it's very simple The Italians attack the flank of the French army on the march. However there is a river to cross and because of rain in the mountains it is swollen and difficult to cross. Typically, my dice rolling revealed no fordable areas in my half of the board, but the kindly umpire let me spend another turn looking and I managed to find a couple of passages. I gradually managed to get across, but my deployment was too cramped and there was no chance of preventing the French escaping off the table.

Only managed to take one picture of the game and it was blurred.

The new venue is a lot better than the old one, with more space and much better lighting. However it seemed that the number of attendees was down and they didn't stay that long. It began to get quiet after 1pm. The mix of traders was strange as well certainly compared to Sheffield and Derby so I do wonder if the show is sustainable in the long term. It was particularly noticable to us that there were two empty games tables and a trader missing, which doesn't help.

Of the other games I only managed to take a photo of the magnificent Hougoument on the next table.


Springwood Portuguese

These 30 Springwood first version British line infantry painted as Portuguese line have been traded for more SYW Austrian Infantry.


have you seen my friends?

Yes, it's a Romanian R1, made by Milicast and part of my Crewe purchases. It's really tiny as you can see compared to a couple of Panzer IIIs I have smartened up. Two points intrigued me firstly 11 vehicles reinforced the Romanian 2nd Armored Regiment in Czechoslovakia in 1945 and secondly that new models were purchased by Ethiopia in 1948!

My other effort was on a befehlswagen III for the Afrika Korps, the modelling was the same as my earlier version and at the same time I worked on a couple of extra Panzer IIIs
Hopefully I'll post my other desert stuff once I get back from Leeds.


More Casualties

This time for the AWI or SYW.

I sorted these out at the same time as the Napoleonics, but they have taken longer as some figures are composites to get the right effect.


Austrian Artillery

At last some progress, first off the HaT cavalry guns, rather too wide and also only provided with the howitzer version. To make the normal gun version I used some left over Airfix RHA barrels. They are rather too wide so it is going to be difficult to find some suitable plastic riders.

As I already had sufficient (converted) limbers for my Napoleonic Austrian army I decided to convert the drivers into the earlier 1798 style with grey coats and round hats for my Revolutionary Wars Austrians. Given the rather rounded shakos it was an easy job to cut them off, reduce by 2mm, add a circular chad from my hole punch and reassemble. On further checking I found that they were foot not horse artillery limbers

The caissons were split three ways one each for the SYW, Revolution and later Napoleonic wars.

Certainly I'm going to look out for some more round hat conversions.


Napoleonic Casualties

The benefits for keeping all those dead Airfix Frenchmen for so many years have at long last been achieved. Here are my latest Black Powder casualty markers.

I've taken a picture from above so I can copy and print lots more to use when needed, please do the same if you want.