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Can I Call It a War Party?

Alright, I have three of the buggers finished. I even felt like getting a little crazy on one loin cloth. I’ve been debating as to what kind of base to mount them on. I’ve put a few questions out on blogs asking about bases that I like. One of the typical answers seems to be English pennies. Well, I used to live in the UK and instead of asking my wife’s family for a constant supply of pennies, I thought about using a US penny. Then I thought I wouldn’t mind the extra gram or two and a bit more breathing room, so I went and mounted them on dimes, almost insuring I’ll never meet anyone that bases them the same way. But dimes are 21.2mm in diameter and 2mm thick, so I like them. If I had an easy source, I’d prefer something magnetic, but I don’t have the patience to source it and shop for them at the moment.

I’m feeling a little more relaxed when painting individual troops. It seems like for the past five years, I’ve been painting to fill a quote so I could play the massive games that I have going around in my head. Each unit was fun to finish and put in the line, but near the end there was little reward in the process. With painting for a skirmish game, you can give the models some personality. This seems like a more fun experience at the moment. On the same token, I can’t imagine a unit of 16 of these guys representing 500 men either. 1 to 1 seems to be the order of the day. I’ve already got a great name for my lead Ranger when they arrive.

I’ve got a boat load more of the Galloping Major’s figures arriving soon, though they seem to be delayed by “inclement” weather in Britain.

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First Try at a Game of Might & Reason

OK, after 3 years of painting to get the forces ready to play a game of Might & Reason, about 4 months of purchasing and building terrain and a reread of the rules. I was ready to try my first game. I have been building the forces with two battles in mind, Lobositz and Kolin. I choose to try Lobositz first as a scenario due to it’s smaller size.

I set up the table and took some snaps in a previous post. So now, I’ve put all the troops on the table and lined them up neatly. I played the first four-ish rounds of the game and learned quite a bit. The first thing I learned was that I need to start with a much smaller force to get the hang of the rules. The M&R rules are not complicated, but I didn’t read them, apparently, with recently enough to help. So I think a smaller game with less details will help.

Over all it was fun to see the lines advance towards each other, but there was too much to remember for me to still be able to have fun and move everything. Once I become familiar with the rules and get some sort of system down for gameplay, I think the game will be great.

Having an opponent, rather than solo play, would greatly increase the ease of learning, but what are you going to do. I took a few snaps of the game in progress for those who like pictures of them.

The timing could not have been worse for my M&R figs as I have just gained and acted upon a new interest in the French and Indian war side of the conflict.

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The Mohawks Have Landed

Alright, I started reading about the French and Indian War recently. As a change from 6mm, I choose FIW skirmish as a little break, and I like what I see so far. I had asked around and was recomended Conquest Miniatures for my Native Americans, but was unhappy with the level of info they had for painting them. I had all the relavant Osprey titles and some Troiani plates from the AWI, but I wanted more info. In the search, I came across the Galloping Major Wargames figures. It was pretty much love at first sight. I really liked the look of the Indians and was sold. I put in the list of figures for Chrismas to the wife, but couldn’t wait and ordered a small sample to tide me over while they arrived.

When they showed up, I wasn’t disappointed. I quickly picked out my least favorite of the poses to practice on (a hard choice as they all were good) and got to work. Some posts on message boards and some contact with the owner/sculptor of Galloping Major and I had a good idea of where to start. There is some amazing examples of painted figures on his site and I was particularly taken with the following one.

So I set out to recreate it. Let me know what you think.

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Wash Experiments – Part 1

In my continuing persuit of better quality for my 28mm models, I’ve taken some advice from a thread I started on TMP.  I’m going to try washing the white basecoat and then drybrushing over that.  I’ve created a grey wash with some paint and Future floor polish that I have from some previous experiments years ago.

Here is the original model, turn down your monitor brightness or the white may cause some temporary blindness.

Here is the same model with a grey wash on it.  I don’t think the photo shows just how dark the actual wash is, but I’m not very happy with just washing the white.

Here is the same model with a white drybrush over the the wash.  I’m a big fan of this actually.  I will most likely use this method, it’s all down to fine tuning it now.

More experiments to follow, I have some figures primed white and grey that I will be experimenting on with more washes.

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Maximillian Ready For Play

I started this guy a while ago, but became discouraged as I assembled him, then quickly dropped it twice. The second time loosing the newly repaired arm into a dark unknown corner of my basement where I prime models. He sat for at least three weeks while I looked at him once in a while and tried to figure out what my next move was. Then it dawned on me.

I have been experimenting with adding parts to models to make them more “steam-y” lately. I have some small brass rods that I might be able to fashion into a multi-barrel weapon suitable for this model. But how to make it fit with the rest of the model. A long, long while ago I bought some green stuff (two part self curing resin) as I always read about it on others blogs but had never tried it. I never really had a need, but thought it might be handy to have around. I was pretty hand with a sculpting tool in college, not good enough to get a job doing it mind, but better than the average Joe. This seemed like the perfect job for trying my hand at creating something with green stuff.

I first snipped four short lengths of brass rod, glued two side by side with super glue. The glued two more directly on top of those two, so I had four barrels in a square shape. I then broke off some greenstuff and worked it in my fingers, then formed it around one end of the rods and squared it off on the table top for a blocky shoulder piece. Once it cured, I pinned it to the model and waited. Once dry, another coat of primer and I was ready to paint the bugger. I think it came out alright. You can see the arm I manufactured on the left here, circled in red. You can see the model in it’s original form with the very cool, but now missing, gun arm at the older post.

I’ve taken some more photos and a few with my newly minted Prussian foot sloggers for some scale. I really like this model and will most likey get another one or two some day.

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First 28mm Historical Figures

I’ve painted a lot of 6mm guys in the same pose, I mean A LOT of 6mm guys in the same pose. It’s time for a bit of a change. I first started painting 28mm “Heroic” sci-fi stuff for a short while before I become interested in historical gaming. I didn’t really do it well though. I suppose it’s time to try a little harder.

I ordered some Front Rank AWI figures to get started with. I have painted more AWI figures than anywhere else and I already have Sharp Practice as a rule set. I just ordered some test models. “Test Models,” doesn’t sound that evil does it? I have avoided them for years, as it always translated to “wasted time” to me. But now I’m a firm believer in trying things out and trying them a few different ways.

Working in 6mm, I’ve been able to block paint EVERYTHING and get away with it. In 6mm, you are working to make the unit look good, not the individual. Here is my first block painted British regular or hatman. Everything is in the right place and the right color, it’s just that it lacks…character.

I need to add something to make the model look more three dimensional. I only have experience with dry brushing and some with black lining. So I thought I would try black lining my other test model.

Here is my second test model. I block painted it as well, but black lined his straps with a technical pen ( Pigma Micron 0.25mm) to get the definition on the straps. I think the picture looks better than the model.

Still not happy with the results, I decided I had to try something else.

This figure has been dry brushed and black-lined. But this time, I painted the thin straps black and the edges of the thick straps black, then painted white on the tops of them. I also primed it gray, drybrushed the small clothes with white, then painted them with ivory. I was hoping this would break up the white areas. His red coat also has a lighter color drybrushed on top for depth.

I have another in the works at the moment, but I’m not really sure what combination to try on him. I’m hoping to get this figured out soon as I have my first Mohawks arriving from The Galloping Major Wargames soon!

Anyway, here is a gallery of my first efforts, with a few comparison pics thrown in. All models are Front Rank.