Sunday, November 30, 2008

Items for Sale or Trade

I've posted a list of things I'm trying to sell or trade, including several 18th century ones, and a good bit of other stuff, over on the Snickering Corpses blog. to go to the exact post.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Game in Progress!

Just on the off chance that someone's not watching it, the game has begun over on the Grand Duchy of Stollen blog, with frequent updates:

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Revising RSM Cavalry Again

After further checking, I've learned I was incorrect. The OG command pack includes 3 sets of officer, trumpeter, and standard, but only 1 NCO with pistol. So we're back to the drawing board again.

Meanwhile, there's some info on various Hussar command packs in the comments on the last posting.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

RSM Cavalry Revision

I've refigured things since I posted about what my options were on the RSM Cavalry, and have realized that I actually don't need 1 bag of Hussars plus extras to make up 3 squadrons with the figures I have now. I had forgotten that the Old Glory command packs (which I'm not really fond of, but am using because it'd cost $40 or so to replace them) include an NCO with pistol, so if I used that figure as well as the officer/trumpeter/standard then I can make up 3 12-figure squadrons with just one more bag of the Hussars. 8 RSM Hussars plus the OG command pack per squadron.

I also have a single Sash & Saber NCO with pistol that was sent as a sample. I really love the sculpt, but I can't justify paying over $12 for a 4-figure set right now to replace the OGs. This will likely end up as an aide/guard for a command stand instead.

Needed Revell SYW Infantry

In the vein of reviewing what figures I have and need, I've totaled up what I definitely need in terms of Revell infantry figures to fill out the ranks of units that I've set aside currently.

Austrians needed
4 foot officers
2 drummers
2 charging grenadiers

Prussians needed
4 officers
4 drummers

Optional Austrians
8 additional foot officers
(only if I decided to replace the NCOs with officers in the companies)
2-3 mounted officers
6 Pioneers

Optional Prussians
14 charging grenadiers
40 stand and fire
4 or more marching (with extra officers at a 1-8 ratio if I do more than 4).

Right now, my Prussian musketeer battalions are using 2 ranks of the kneeling figures because I didn't have any standing firing ones, so it'd be nice to replace the middle rank with the standing firing. I have 8 from a box bought since then, so the additional 40 would give me enough to replace them all.

If I fill out the missing ranks, I should have:

1 Austrian musketeer battalion
1 Austrian grenadier battalion
2 Austrian pioneer companies
1 Prussian grenadier battalion
4 Prussian musketeer battalions
1 or more Prussian musketeer companies (marching figures)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Basing and other fun things

About time for another wargaming update.

Plans continue back and forth via email with Stokes Schwartz for our game at the end of this month, fighting a slightly modified version of Charles S. Grant's Tabletop Teaser from Battlegames magazine issue 14. For those who haven't kept up with the details, Stokes will be supplying forces and table, and I will be commanding the troops of the Zichenau invaders remotely by email, with Stokes providing photographs and info of the battle each turn. I'm really looking forward to it. I've already written up my order of battle and initial orders, which Stokes will receive shortly before the game begins, after he's had time to select his own force. Neither of us will know the other's composition until the game begins.

The mailman has been helpfully delivering items since my last post, including another batch of Litko bases for my cavalry, and some more purple heart markers and mini smoke markers also from Litko. Also delivered were a small set of the new metal Spencer Smiths to finish out my troops on hand. Besides a few stray officers (two of which are even now being painted up by Stokes to command our forces in the game), my organization now provides a full 61-figure battalion of musketeer figures organized according to BAR's template, a 43-figure grenadier battalion organized on my own template, and a 12-figure cavalry squadron.

I also made my first attempt at assembling some of the movement bases that were delivered from Litko earlier. They fit very well, and I'm quite pleased, though I might have a go at finding a cheaper solution to be kind to the wargaming budget. At $5 or so a piece, they're not a bad price, but they do add up fast when you need 5-7 of them for a battalion. :>

I'm also pondering trying some black gesso as a basecoat, to see whether I like it or not.

Wal-mart has provided me with a half-dozen $1 porcelain Christmas buildings, which are a little larger than the 15mm J&R buildings, but perhaps still usable especially if I don't combine them in the same town. At any rate, the price was unrefusable. Home Depot also has contributed, with a bag of 21 flocked miniature trees for about $6-7. Five of them were too big for my purposes, but the other 16 should be quite usable. Not a bad price even for 16 trees.

Monday, November 3, 2008

More News

I was going to have pictures posted last night, but the card reader didn't want to acknowledge that there were photos on the card. This morning, after unplugging it and plugging it back in, it finally admitted that I'd taken photos.

I had some big plans for yesterday, but they didn't turn out as I'd intended them. I was going to play a WW2 game using one of Charles S. Grant's tabletop teasers. This is not the same teaster stokes and I are using (more on that later). However, once I started looking at the troops I'd need for it, I realized I need to do more maintenance work before I can field them. My WW2 figures are unpainted plastic, but that wasn't the stopper. The stopper was that far too many of them still have to have the stubs of sprue cut off their bases so they can stand up.

So, instead, I ended up spending (besides more time online) some quality time with basing for the SYW figures. I repaired the bases on 10 of the Spencer Smith figures that had come unglued in shipping, and then proceeded to apply Litko bases to 6 that didn't have any bases, including 4 of the unpainted ones. Once I receive the new metal SSMs I ordered and get them on the same bases, I'll have the full battalion of SSMs based.

I also took my one sample SSM grenadier and the one Minden musketeer that I've had on my workbench and put them on Litko bases to see how they fit. I think the consistent basing will help the Mindens look that much better next to the other figures.

After that, I tried out basing one WW2 figure on a 3/4 inch round base from Litko, which I have 50 or more of that I received from a fellow gamer who'd changed his mind about what bases to use. Still haven't decided if I'm going to stick with it, but while doing this I had a sudden idea, and dug out some of my Revell plastic SYW figures. By gluing the figure on one of these thick 3/4 rounds, then gluing that onto my standard 1x1 square base, it produces a consistent footprint AND erases much of the height difference. While the 3/4 round is rather obvious in its thickness, I think the benefit in terms of making the heights more consistent is sufficient boon. So I based two 6-man companies of Austrian pioneers this way.

If you examine the photo below (click it to enlarge), you can see all of the above, with a RSM figure stuck in the center to show the height comparisons. Additionally, I glued together a 15mm paper cottage. I'm not sure where I got the original for that, but I believe it was a free sample from a producer of paper building designs. If I can dig up the original again, I may make more.

On the upcoming agenda, besides some more basing, is putting together my custom movement trays from Litko, which arrived last week. More photos to come when that's done.

Those of you who read the Grand Duchy of Stollen blog will know that he and I are preparing to play a game by email/blog in the latter part of November. We'll be using one of Charles S. Grant's tabletop teasers, and the game will be laid out in Stokes' wargame rule with myself issuing commands from afar based on photographs. I will be taking the role of the invading Electorate of Zichenau forces.