Category Archives: update

The game approaches – nearly there!

Took yesterday and today as flexi days. With the big ACW game coming tomorrow I wanted a bit of a rest before and a nice leisurely preparation with no panic and stress. Yeah…as if…

First off, the walls and fences took a LOT longer to do than planned. But they are done and packed and ready:Then I sorted out the Order of Battle for both sides. I’ve got loads and loads of ACW. There was no problem there! Yeah… as if.. I was short 5 Union command stands, 2 CSA ones, a CSA corps commander, two CSA guns and a Union caisson! But with  full day yesterday, focus, and just sitting in the attic listening to music (KFL, Van Der Graaf Generator, Levellers, Sabres of Paradise, Rogers Waters) I got them all done!Corps command stand.Two more command stands.CSA guns.And for the Union: Three stands for the Irish BrigadeTwo others.And a caisson I need as ammo supply marker.Not bad for a days work!

I’ve also done labels for all the units which stick on the bottom and the coloured strip folds up at the back of the base.And this morning I laid out the table to get a feel for what it will look like: I will need more fences!!! I have another 3 meters of MDF to make up so that will help!

So tomorrow I will meet up with Iain, Dave, Simon and Ken to do battle! What could possibly go wrong!

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Limbering up on the workbench!

Work continues towards next week’s ACW game. I’m pretty well on top of things but as ever I keep finding other things to do. First off I realised I needed some more limbers for the Union forces. Luckily I had three Minifigs (3rd rather then 2nd Gen) sat waiting so have just finished off those. I might need to do a couple of CSA ones but possibly not essential. 

I’m also still working in scenery. First off some resin walls. These are from Small Terrain Miniature Scenery. A few test pieces. They look a little shiny as I’d just slapped on a coat of varnish. Still need to add some static grass.Also have another batch of the MDF fences ready to go onto bases.

I may be short a few command stands so prepped a big batch of them. Don’t think I’ll need them all which is good!And although I have a couple of buildings to drop down I had one more (Timecast I think) in the box so have made a start on that. Basic coats and washes on. Just need to drybrush and detail. Undecided on whether to base them and pretty up the bases. May be too much work…Going to spend tomorrow night listing the last few things to do. I have THursday and FRiday off so hopefully can get anything done by then…


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More fences!!!

Having acquired the correct DecoArt Burnt Umber I repainted the four corner pieces and finished them off. I’ve also made up another batch of fences to do… I’ve also realised that I may be a few limbers short of a full battery! So I’ve made up three Minifigs limbers (just using two horses) and started painting them. May need to do similar for CSA but may just give them less guns…

And I might have ordered a few resin stone walls…

I’m hoping next week to lay out the planned table and make sure I have all the bits, it looks OK and then photograph it for quick setup on the day!


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10mm Sudan and more fences!

As mentioned a couple of times I have a long standing 10mm Sudan project that never really seems to get going. However, I was sent some spare Brits that Slugbalancer painted and no longer needed. They had a neat paintjob but I wanted apply a wash to bring out the detail a bit more. And I was missing some command figures, and when I finally decided on basing, I needed two extra figures. I thought I had managed to match the colours quite well but on closer inspection, even with the was, they are a little out. And having mixed the figures up to base and picked them at random I inevitably put the extra figures next to each other!

Anyway, here is the unit. I may paint a few more in the same style as they are quite quick to do.

And fences.

The 4Ground fences from the last post…Far too fiddly to use on the table although admittedly OK for making curves etc. but I’ve bevelled the bases and joined them up to make longer lengths. I’ve joined the very short pieces to make corner sections. However my DecoArt Burnt Umber I use for all my bases ran out so I had to use what I thought was the same stuff but just a different make. It was different colour! More reddy. And it took ages to dry. And was shiny!! So the need to wait until I get some of the proper stuff and re-do them. I have 2 packs of the 4Ground Snake Rail fencing to do but that seems quite fiddly and time consuming. I also have two more packs of the above  so I may just rattle through that!



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On the workbench

As I’m on a bit of a roll I thought I’d do a quick workbench post.

Fences continue. As per the last post the 4Ground fences I have need a little work to make them usable for me. They come in these sizes:They are easy to put together but the small sizes make them a bit fiddly on the table. So… I’ve joined two together, trimmed off the end post at the join, and chamfered the edges to hopefully make them less ‘edgy’…I will need to apply PVA and sand and am a little concerned they plasticard may warp. May do one to test…

I’ve also been tinkering with some 10mm Sudan. These I got from Slugbalancer in London. I applied a thinned down wash and tonight varnished them. Also painted a couple of officers and prepped the two figures I’m missing to make it up to 5 stands of 6. Onwards. Lots more to do!


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More Fire and Fury markers…

With the ACW game next month rapidly approaching I thought I’d get the last of the markers I need done. So after securing a little painting time over the last few days here is what I managed to get done.

The 16 Disrupted markers for the CSA to go with the Union ones already done.Some gun destroyed and low ammo markers for the artillery for both sides. And some more low ammo markers for the Union……and the Rebs…And the casualty markers again…All figures by Peter Pig. The low ammo markers etc. I tried doing with a base coat and a wash. The ended up being too ‘dirty’ and needing some highlighting. The casualty figures I just undercoated black and applied a single coat, leaving bit of the black showing through. Seems to work OK and is closer in style to the original Minifigs I have.

I learnt two lessons doing these. Firstly, leave your varnish overnight to dry before doing the PVA and ‘sand’ for the bases. I rushed it a little and the varnish was still a little tacky in the nooks and crannies…. Which resulted in lost of my ballast mix getting stuck in there! Bloody nightmare to get out! And secondly, I mounted the casualty figures on the oval to paint them and then used Copydex to stick those to the sticks I use as holders. The Copydex seemed to ‘bond’ with the MDF and it was a pain separating them… and one base had a ‘layer’ of MDF peel off! 

I’ve got four more broken gun stands lined up and then I need to make fences!

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Von Don Corp. Air Support

Many moons ago (2011!!) I decided to re-use some random 1/300 SF models to recreate the Savage Swans (my ImagiNation force which started in the C18th) as the military arm of VonDon Corporation (von Donovan being the family name of the original commander of the Swans) and relocate them to the not too distant future! Although I re-painted a Red Dwarf Starbug as a basic transport vessel I’ve never added any combat craft… until now…

Although I’ve been focused on X-Wing the last week I’ve also prepped a few things to paint for a little LAW painting challenge and for Ayton. And as I’ve been prepping stuff for use in Horizon Wars I thought I’d paint a few ships that I got off my mate Slugbalancer a few years ago! These are from an old Star War range that I’ve not really seen anywhere else but found this pic online:

So as I wanted these for VonDon Corp. they needed to be in the standard buff and green colour scheme. I’d forgotten I did the other stuff green and then added the buff but the other way round seems to work OK as well. So here we have the VDC Combat Air Support.

One Ganymede Fighter and two Burt Assault Support Ships (know by the troops as the Burt Big Ass).

Quite pleased with them really. Wasn’t sure how to do the canopy glass but it doesn’t look too bad painted. The planned X-Wing tonight didn’t happen. Party as the lad was a total nightmare this morning so we are each in each others bad books, and partly he had a friend over to play.May have to wait until the weekend now…


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Plan? What plan?

Last night and this morning I had a productive little session prepping some Norman crossbowmen for Ayton, some plastic SF fighter type things to use with the 1/300 chaps, and finally varnished the Altefritzenburgers I painted last year and which I still have half the unit to do. I then popped into town and nipped into the Tyneside Club to confirm arrangements for an ACW game next week. Wherein, Richard, Lawrence and Phil (and Alex) were playing Star Wars X-Wing. I’ve avoided even trying this in the past as the system didn’t appeal. But Phil, (and I blame him entirely!) convinced me to take control of a X-Wing for a turn or two. What a bloody stupid idea!! It’s a rather fun system! I managed to inflict a little damage, take none, a fly unintentionally rather will in formation with Phil’s craft!

I then had to go but couldn’t resist nipping in to Forbidden Planet/Travelling Man. The Core sets were a little pricey there so I checked Amazon. Much cheaper.  I then had a pang of common sense and thought I would wait a couple of days to be sure. Then on a Facebook boardgame group someone offered up the Star Trek Attack Wing core set. A quick Google confirmed it was the same basic system and apparently a decent game. So it’s on its way… I’ll try this with my lad and if he likes it get the Star Wars anyway!


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Plans for 2017

Bit of a wordy post this. Sorry. 2017… plans… Not an easy one…

I have two events that require preparation.

Ayton over the first May Bank Holiday weekend. This is a Lion Rampant event so I need at least a 24 point force and ideally a 42 to allow for the bigger game. I’ve got 12 figures painted so far…. Perfectly doable in the time but…

Mid-march we now have a small LAW gathering in the frozen North to play a 15mm Fire and Fury game. This will allow me to roll out my newly re-based troops. I need to sort a scenario and check I have everything I need. I may need to do a few more markers and a load more fences but that’s about it… I hope…

Ayton 2018 is looking like a happy return to the C18th so I’d like to do a few more bits for that.

I had a bit of a sort out last night and I think I can ID the following projects that are either in progress or never started. So in order of scale…

  • Ancient Naval – this might go…
  • C19th Naval – still tempted to do this…
  • 6mm SF –having just based up a load of these I still have a huge pile that can be painted. I think the priority is to just get a game with tee. Maybe rebase some of the single based stuff, or replace it with newly painted. And some odds and ends of flying this to add to the forces.
  • 6mm SYW – Paul Bright is kicking off a project around this and using the same basing as me so I may add a unit or two. I found I still have quite a lot of this lying unpainted… J
  • 6mm Normans for SAGA – this can go!
  • 6mm Napoleonic – have some 1806 French. I think I will sell them….
  • 6mm WW2 – originally bought for CoC. Think these Adler figures have to go….
  • 6mm Modern – might return to this later in the year and try and finish stuff off and get rid of surplus – I have way too much unpainted that will never really get done. Annoyingly the new H&R infantry look very nice… J
  • 1/300 WW2 Air – about a dozen Raiden for North Africa – never going to happen…
  • 10mm Sudan – although I have a lot of this and had plans for big battles I think the sensible option is to use it for The Men Who Would Be Kings.
  • 10mm League of Augsburg – As I only have the one (very nice) unit for Essex Boy and a fair bit of unpainted I’m not sure if this will see any progress this year. Maybe just paint the Swans!
  • 15mm AWI – sort the unpainted. Offload. Maybe finish the bits of rebasing that are outstanding. Painting unlikely….
  • 15mm Ancients – still stuff to re-base for my Punic War stuff. Sabots to obtain from Simon Miller when done. And a LOT of pikes and Gauls to paint. 2018 more likely I think….
  • 15mm Dark Age – only have a few Splintered Light but the few I have painted I like (Swans again) so am reluctant to sell.
  • 15mm ACW – with the game in March I need markers painting up and maybe some command. And fences. And sort through all the unpainted and ID the surplus. A lot of makes in there that just don’t fit so can go.
  • 20mm WSS – would like to finish the brigade of these as possible game with EB later in year would be nice
  • 20mm WW2 – have some PSC Americans. Maybe one day…. Would be sensible to paint a few of these for CoC?
  • 28mm SYW ImagiNations – LOTs of unpainted lead. Tail end of year may get some new units to bolster forces in prep for Ayton 2018. Maybe a few more Indians… J
  • 28mm C19th ImagiNations – These I intend to rebase and add to for use with SP2.  And a big boat waiting to be painted!
  • 28mm Lion Rampant – for Ayton this year. Need 24 points, Ideally 42. Have started. Have way too much plastic (including Arabs) but quite looking forward to painting a few!

I think that is it!

Over on LAW I have started a 2017 Painting Challenge (similar to the excellent Analog Hobbies Painting Challenge) but just points based. No special rounds or competitions etc. I’m keeping it really simple. 240 points between now and Ayton. That’s 12 foot/6 mounted a month which SHOULD see me sorted for Ayton. Anything else is a bonus.

So priorities for first half of year:

  • 15mm ACW for game in March
  • 28mm Normans etc. for Ayton at start of May.
  • Odds and ends that take my fancy.
  • And lots of sorting and selling.

Second half of year?

  • Finishing projects off and sorting. 6mm Modern. 6mm SYW
  • Make a start on some 28mm C18th for Ayton 2018.

And overall, play some more games!! Either at the clubs or at home if I ever get the attic cleared enough!

That’ll do for now. At least until I find a box of something I’ve missed…


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The Year Gone – 2016

Hmmm…2016. I had great plans:

  1. Complete the 20mm WSS Les Higgins brigade (hopefully) for the March game. 2-3 battalions. 1 regiment of cavalry. 1 gun and limber.
  2. Complete 2nd Battalion of Altefritzenburgers for Ayton. And maybe 12 cavalry. And some battalion guns… Probably…
  3. Modern Microarmour – finish off Belgians and Brits and sort out the remaining Soviet stuff.
  4. Punic War – I ‘probably’ don’t need to do anything for this but… I have just signed up to the latest Forged in Battle Kickstarter and can see myself grabbing some Punic War related stuff come June and maybe finally getting some pikemen done… and some re-basing…
  5. Start the Lion Rampant stuff. Not urgent as needed for Ayton 2017! But I’d like to try another game before then

I totally failed on the WSS. Attending the game at Gary’s didn’t happen and without the driver of a game the painting just didn’t happen. Painting for Ayton went OK. I got the cavalry regiment I wanted finished and battalion guns.  The 2nd Altefritzenburgers are still on the painting table. Twelve of them finished but the rest just primed. We shall be returning to the C18th at Ayton 2018 so they’ll be done for then!

Modern microarmour saw little progress apart from basing up some Brits.The Punic War game did happen! Apart from a little rebasing and some command stands I didn’t do the massive rebase I planned but it was enough for the game in November. And against all odds I did stick together some Normans and start painting for Ayton 2017!I also had plans for:

  1. 10mm Sudan – I got the Black Powder supplement for Christmas and still intend to do this this. Honest…
  2. 15mm AWI – sort and re-assess. Clear out what’s not needed and re-base a few

Neither of which happened! 10mm Sudan seemed a little daunting but the arrival of The Men Who Would Be Kings may make it more manageable…. 

And on a more general note:

  1. Sort the attic to free up the game table (again!) so I can actually play a game up there!
  2. Get in one game a month at either the Tyneside or Whitley Bay clubs
  3. Sort out moving my blog content to the website and generally do more updates
  4. I’d quite like to get a game of ASL in as well….
  5. And finally, I’m going to resurrect the whole Wargaming Neutral thing..

The table has been cleared, covered, cleared and is now covered again! I did manage a small ACW game and intend to clear it again soon for another game! I tried to get to a local club each month. It started well with the Whitley Bay club where I managed 3-4 games. Then life got in the way… I didn’t even manage a game at the Tyneside Club…

The blog has been ticking along and this year saw the 10th Anniversary of my blogging efforts. Moving content to a website is ongoing… maybe this year…

ASL – nope… 🙁

Wargaming Neutral… – nope 🙁

So not too bad really but could have done better. So what else happened in the year?

Ayton was its usual excellent weekend of C18th campaign fun run this year by Henry Hyde: Day 1 and Day 2

Having managed a solo Fire and Fury game in July I finally decided to embark on a re-basing and re-painting of my 15mm ACW collection. Quite a lot of work but worth it in the end.

I still have some stuff to do (some re-basing of newly acquired stuff, markers, terrain) but now have decent forces for both sides. And I’m hoping March will see it all on the table if I can get the LAW chaps (EB, W2D and GM) up for a game!

October saw a minor LAW gathering in Framlingham for a couple of excellent little games. A DBN game on Day 1 and a lovely early C19th Colonial game in Day 2 November saw myself, EB, W2D and GM descend on the Foundry venue for our To the Strongest game and most excellent it was too! 

December had me dealing with my 95 year old Aunt and getting her moved into a home so the end of the year really slowed down. However, I had made the excellent Battleground show and did get the 6mm SF acquisitions re-based over the Christmas holiday.

Other event? I made a few shows. Partizan in May was great. It was my birthday on the day and Iain Burt very kindly gifted me his 10mm WSS figures:And 2016 also saw big changes at Miniature Wargames magazine when Henry Hyde departed. I was pleased when Henry took over as editor as I’d not been keen on the direction the mag was taking before then. New blood at the helm seemed to really lift the mag and I was happy to re-subscribe. Having seen the first few issues of the new style mag I’m still not convinced. I don’t object to SF and Fantasy. However I have a pretty limited interest in that and although the new content is in addition to existing historical stuff it just doesn’t ‘feel’ right and regardless of the respective page counts for each ‘genre’ it feels like the historical side is getting sidelined. My sub runs another couple of issues so I will see it through and I hope John Treadaway finds his feet and his own style and things change. But Henry has moved on and it is equally good to see him now writing for both the other mags. 

So, there we have it. A little review. Not a bad year really. Plans for 2017 to come!


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