Saturday, December 27, 2014

10mm Armour

An assortment of Pendraken 10mm armour, painted up over the Christmas break.

 Top L-R, Vickers Light Tank MkVIb, T-26 with 45mm gun. 
Bottom row, L3/33 tankettes.

I painted the tankettes in a variant of the Hungarian camouflage pattern because it looks more interesting than the plain brown that seems the commonest paint scheme. The Mk. VIb is in the British Army pattern of 1940. The T-26 is a basic Soviet olive green. As an experiment I mounted all the vehicles on clear plastic bases so they would blend with the ground beneath.

An unexpected encounter at a crossroads during the VBCW, somewhere in England's green and pleasant land. The Mk. VIb commander has moments to decide what to do, whilst the tankettes scuttle through a gateway in an effort to outflank the monster - or perhaps to escape destruction. The telegraph poles are a new addition to the scenery.

I have a batch of BUF infantry on the painting block, halfway through the process. Photos to follow in the next few days.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Hobart's 79th Armoured Division at War

Last Christmas my lovely wife gave me a Kindle for a present, which I like very much. I have a number of military books on it, and the latest addition to my collection is Richard Doherty's Hobart's 79th Armoured Division at War: Invention, Innovations & Inspiration, published by Pen and Sword (May 19, 2014).

I came across it whilst browsing Amazon on my Kindle on Christmas Eve. The book's currently available at $1.99 and is well worth getting. Percy Hobart was a gifted if somewhat abrasive person, but no one else could have raised and trained the "Funnies" to such a pitch of excellence. The 79th trained for D-Day all over the UK, and I know a couple of the sites they used quite well. I've just finished the chapters relating to the division's experiences in Normandy, and the sheer heroism of those men is breathtaking. Many of the actions described would make ideal scenarios for Chain of Command. I'm currently reading about the 79th's exploits at Cap Gris Nez during the "Great Swan" across France.

Of course, the book has got me thinking in terms of gaming 1944 NW Europe...

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

A Very Merry Christmas to One and All!

We're having a quiet Christmas Eve here in Ohio. The weather's pretty grizzly, but I'm staying indoors. I'm going to slap paint on some 10mm figures and finish off six N-scale roadside telegraph poles whilst listening to carols.  

So, without further ado, 
let me and mine wish
A Merry Christmas to One and All!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Adding to my scenery

I made some more terrain for my 10mm/N-scale gaming. I'd had telegraph poles in mind for a while since they're a ubiquitous feature of the modern world. The poles are wooden mini-dowels with wire crossbars passed through holes drilled in the dowel. The insulator caps are fashioned from 'puffy' paint, and the bases are card built up with Miliput for grass effect and to add weight.

These are very easy and cheap to make. I plan to make another set of telegraph posts as roadside features, since lines usually run alongside roads and lanes for ease of maintenance and repair. My idea is to build them into short sections of pavement, hedgerow and bank to blend in with my current scenery. After that, I'll make a red telephone box or two. Those phone lines have to run to something!   

In the foreground is a quartet of Pendraken Miniatures 10mm tanks which rolled in yesterday for my VBCW collection. Top L-R, Vickers Light Tank Mk VIb, Soviet T-26 (I think it's one of the 'tankiest' looking tanks ever produced). Front, Italian C33/35 tankettes. The Vickers will be painted in British Army early war camouflage pattern. That way it'll be of use in VBCW gaming and as part of a future BEF 1940 collection. The T-26 will go to the Socialist faction (a prezzy from Uncle Joe Stalin), and the C33/35s to the BUF (a prezzy from Il Duce). I'm in two minds about the camo scheme for these. On the one hand, black would make them look nice and sinister for a nasty and sinister organization, yet black limits their use elsewhere. I might just paint them up in Italian camo colours and leave it at that. 

I also got some SCW Republican infantry, officers and standard bearers in winter dress. The infantry will complete my BUF faction forces. Taking a tip from the VBCW forum I'll paint the officers and standard bearers in various factional outfits and give them flags to match. That way I can swap out a flag at the head of a nondescript unit and have them change factions instantly.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Chain of Command

So, I finally bought the Chain of Command and At the Sharp End .pdf versions. Now I can see what WW2 gamers are raving about! 

They're a clean, intuitive set of rules that cover just about every warring nation and circumstance. The Sharp End supplement is a neat, easy-to-use set of campaign rules which add a distinctive flavour to the main rules, and makes the gamer think beyond the casual one-off game. I'm going to try them both out using my 10mm VBCW figures sometime during the holidays to see how they play on the table top. 

Saturday, December 13, 2014

A Sad Event

Like many others I've enjoyed browsing the beautiful model work on 'Captain Richard's Miniature Issues' blog. It is with sadness that today I read of the good Captain's passing via a message posted to his blog by his daughter. 

He was suddenly taken ill the day before Thanksgiving, and lost his battle on December 10th. A talented artist with a wonderful ability to give life to his creations, his work is recognized by modellers and gamers around the world. My condolences go to his family and friends.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

"Sands of the Sudan"

The one game and set of rules that really turned me onto Colonial wargaming were to be found at Peter Gilder's wargames holiday center during the 80's. In the same spirit, an excellent two-part account of a Sudan game can be found at Carlo Pagano's blog With Pyjamas Through the Desert.

Carlo and friends have reproduced Peter's rules in a labor of love that keeps the flame alive, and hopefully will introduce more players to a splendid gaming experience. Check out the account of the game - then check out the rules. They're worth it!

Monday, December 1, 2014

"Computers don't bounce...

...when you throw them out the window."

I hope all my American readers had a great Thanksgiving.

Not much happening with me these last few weeks as ongoing PC problems are tying up my time. If I have to reformat the hard drive once more, I might well see if my computer tutor's statement about computers not bouncing is true...


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