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Towards Moscow Trilogy (TMT) – Part 5, Swedish Cavalry at Lesnaya

I do apologise  if you are a follower of this blog and got sent an update earlier this week.  I did a draft based on what I intended to do this week and instead of saving it to add some more text and pictures to over the weekend (when I actually had something to show) I pressed publish.  Anyway here is the real update, hope it is of some interest.

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Back to basics again and a update on the progress with the Lesnaya battle, this time the hard-hitting Swedish Cavalry. All based in a wedge formation. This formation represents the way in which the cavalry (and dragoon units) attacked (knee-behind-knee) as part of the overall Gå–På–method focused on aggression and shock.

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Picture by Krigsarkivet (Swedish War Archives) from 1707, Public Domain (link here)

All these miniatures were part of a commission I received from Chris at Marching Colour (link here), this is the third batch he has done for me and I have nothing but praise. I know I said it before, but it has given me time to explore some alternative stuff I normally have no time to do.

My remit to Chris was “Block painted neatly not with layers, hightlight, varnish or basing”.  I also asked for the flags/standards to be left blank.

My job is the pleasurable task of doing some final touches (including flags), ink them, some highlight and base them up.  Before I show the individual overall units, I will go through these steps.  The models from Chris are more or less ready to be based without doing these additional steps – but to me it makes a difference and adds some satisfaction in having provided some kind of input into the overall production process, whether you can actually see it on the table when you stand up and look down at them.  A kind of flat pack approach to miniature painting, but hopefully more enjoyable than those Billy Bookcases from IKEA. I am using the brave riders of the Åbo och Björneborgs Kavalleriregemente as an example.  With regards to painting guide there are some reasonable information but a lot of gaps (see the discussion here, on the Tacitus webpage that also shows a reasonable interpretation of the material available for this and many other battles).  I am also lucky enough to have copies of the eminent Acedia Press books The Great Northern War 1700-1721 : colours and uniforms Part 1 and Part 2 that contains a lot of further information. The books are long since out-of-print.

Step 0 – Done by Chris – block paint miniatures neatly (the longest step)

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Step 1 – do the flags and any repainting (e.g on some occasions I have changed the colour of a horse etc)

  • Flags (a orangy standard for these guys)
  • Trumpeter (or drummer) details
  • Light Silver on the swords (adds to the overall effect)
  • Highlight the hat lace (in this case yellow)
  • Horsetails in dark grey (german grey)
  • I changed the schabraque and pistol covers to Orange although I had told Chris something different (no information and perhaps unlikely but Orange it will be).

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Step 2 – Paint the bases of the miniatures brown (I use a burnt umber or chocolate brown for this – same as for my base terrain colour)

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Step 3 – Apply Nutbrown Ink  – let it dry. Apply generously, avoid the metal parts (no soldier would keep his, mostly men in this case. sword rusty). I sometime add some highlights if the ink makes it to dark or messes something up.

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Step 5 – Prepare base. I paint the edges brown as it saves time later. I use 2mm laser cut 60 by 30mm bases.

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Step 6 – glue to base. Well first you have to cut the strips into the individual riders, make sure each of them can stand on a flat surface so they do not fall in the glue later.  Apply glue all over the base when you are ready to put them on the base.  Note: The miniatures forms a shallow wedge shape (in line with the picture above) with the trumpeter on the right and the Kornett in the middle and furthest ahead holding the standard.  The Kornett, or Cornet in English, was the lowest commissioned officer rank equivalent to a Second Lieutenant (or Fänrik in Sweden) . The rank was also used in the British army up to the late 19th century.  It has nothing do with the family of wind instruments with the same name.

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Step 7 – Apply sand as soon as possible. Carefully flip it slightly so that excess sand falls off. If any bare metal still shines through or the bases are too obvious apply a little bit more of glue in these places and apply some more sand, “flip away” the excess carefully and then let dry.

Step 8 – Paint the sand brown  (I do not as I have some chocolate coloured sand)

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Step 9 – dry brush Colour 1 to 3 (decide on a set and stick to it, all your stuff will look the same whether you do them today or several years ago. The picture does not really come out well. The colours are a very pale brown, a little more yellowish brown and fnally a light yellow.  But try out your own combo.

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Here are the colours I use.

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Step 10 – add PVA glue where you want the static grass.  Apply Static grass and shake off excess (same here get a lot of a brand and stick to it, I use Busch light and dark grass. Mostly the light) I then stick on some flowery tufts when I feel for it (they are a little bit overwhelming scalewise, but I like it!).

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Step 12 – Add base to your collection (here with the other three bases of the regiment).

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Anyway here are the other ones I have done this week in no particular order,

Cavalry Regiments

Karelska Kavalleriregementet (4 bases)

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Adelsfanan i Sverige och Finland (1 base) – a company was part of Lewenhaupts army. So a base may be excessive. But why not.

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Adelsfanan i Livland och på Ösel  (1 base), this is the Cavalry Corps of the Nobility in Livonia and Ösel. Strictly speaking Adelsfanan means the Nobel Banner.

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Dragoon Regiment / Squadrons

Skogh’s Dragon Skvadron (1 base)

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Karelska Land Dragon Skvadron (1 base)

Damn, forgot to this one. Well…..

Schreitterfeldts Dragonregemente (2 bases)

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Schlippenbachs Dragonregemente (2 bases)

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Upplands Ståndsdragoner (2 bases)

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Öselska Land Dragon Skvadron (1 base)

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Light Horse Regiment

Vallack / Vollosh Regementet (2 bases) – light cavalry unit formed from Polish and Lithuanian Free Companies. I have plenty of these from the past already so I will be using a few of those on the day.

I did the Swedish infantry before (see here). So all that remains for the Swedes are some commanders and that dragoon base I forgot!

/ Have a good week

 

 

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Kalisz 1706 at Salute 2017 – The Show

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Nick and I had a fantastic day at the Salute Show and my thanks also goes to Rob and Laurent who provided some priceless support in helping out before, during and after the Show.  We basically talked to people about the table, the game, the battle and the rules all day – it was brilliant!.  We did not have time to do more than a few token moves on the table.

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Rob, Nick and Laurent

I also would like to thank all of you who have read this blog that came by to say hello – I really appreciate it.  In addition to all of the others who stopped by to have a look, ask a few questions or take a picture.  Finally, I have to say that Warlords are very good at organizing this massive event and we had no problems this, or the last time, we attended Salute in 2015.

I had a quick chat with Peter Berry of Baccus who said that Joy of Six in July was now full and that he had to turn away games – this is brilliant news! Not for the people who get turned away but that there is a huge interest in putting on 6mm games. I just wonder why there are not more 6mm, or smaller scale 2 to 10mm,  land battle games at Salute, or should I say, wargames shows in general? I have not heard many people say that they have a decent table worth of figures and some terrain in 6mm – but that have been turned down setting up a game by a wargames show.  But I will leave that thought for this moment.

Apart from our table there was one more 6mm game, the Battle for Neustadt that is a cold war scenario set in West Germany in 1984. This was a nice table run by Iain Fuller and others from the Warlords Club.  They will also attend the Joy of Six in July so there is another chance to catch them there. I have had some e-mail communication with Iain in the past so it was nice to have a quick chat and say hello.

I also got a chance to see the new Baccus TYW/ECW sculpts and I let the battalion of pike and shot talk for itself. Wonderful stuff from Baccus yet again.  Peter gave me a copy of the new Swedish flag sheet for the Thirty Years war – it is very tempting indeed.

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PIke and Shot from Baccus – Wonderful!

I also talked to Peter Riley and David Pead who are the men behind the wargames calculator that I have mentioned before on the blog (see here).  They told me they have some interesting stuff coming up so I would follow them on Facebook and see what they are up to.

I also said a quick hello to Neil Shuck but did not get a chance to give him the Sharp Practice stuff for Joy of Six as I had planned.

I also had a chat with an old friend of mine, Michael Leck who put on a really nice game using his Pikemans Lament rules called Fort Mosquito 1654. This was a battle between Swedish and Dutch colonial forces set in mid 17th century Delaware, involving native tribes, attempting to wrestle control of the river and the important fur trade.  Incidentially they grabbed two of the prizes of the day – well deserved.  For more information see his blog (link here). I had a very useful discussion with Jan (who did the terrain and buildings) on how to make log cabins and the trees using steel wool that I will have to try out some time in the future.

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Fort Mosquito 1654
Here are a few shots of our table in no particular order.

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In addition Nick has put on some pictures on his facebook page (here) and on the Wyre Forest Wargames club page (here).

We produced a few organization charts to simplify the proceedings, they turned out being very useful and look good too. There were made using SmartArt Graphic in Excel and then pasted into PowerPoint with some added pictures etc.

Swedish Playsheet 1

Saxon Playsheet 1

I also updated the PDF showing the bases used on the day (download link here – Kalisz Bases Polemos GNW and TOTSK v2 ).

We also handed out a leaflet with a few notes about the Battle and the Game, here –  Kalisz Leaflet Salute 2017.

Now getting ready for Joy of Six in July.

Finally, the 1914-21 Society (link here) who was attending had a Maxim machine gun on display but, in my view, the key piece was the Madsen Light Machine Gun.  I knew the Madsen as the LMG of the Norwegian and Danish soldiers of WW2, but did not know it was the first true light machine gun produced in a major quantity and that it was used extensively by the Russian Army in the Russo-Japanese war and during the Russian Civil War.  Thanks for your time gents!

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The 1914-21 Society Table (Laurent, thanks for the Picture)

/ That was a fun weekend

 

Kalisz 1706 at Salute 2017 – Part 4 ready for the Show and some Scrap for Scrappers

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This is the 50th blog post since we started last year following Salute 2016 (here is a link to the very first post) – no big parties lined up or memorial statues being carved but there is a certain level of satisfaction involved – I am celebrating the occasion rolling a few ones and having a few crafty beers.

We spent last week in Southern France visiting some friends with the compulsory sampling of the local produce to the small hours.  The Little One practiced his camouflage skills and apart from the bright NERF rifle it was difficult to spot him and his friend in the undergrowth.

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On the Wargames front there is not much new – all the Stuff for Salute is packed.

We have told you where to look for us at Salute in the last blog entry (see here) and here is the general blur about it (see here) – hope we will see you there!

I had to rearrange a little bit so the Russians got out of their box anyway in their full glory.  Here are a few shots showing 24 of the total 32 bases that will be present on the day.

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And finally and most important to create some dimension on an otherwise relatively flat battlefield – the trees.

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Below is a link to an PDF file with the details of the bases for the Battle and game statistics for both Polemos GNW as well as The Twilight of the Sun King.  See the notes below on regards on what each bases represents in the Polemos rules which should make it relatively easy to translate the overall list to whatever rules you are using.  Note that this list is slightly different to what I have presented in previous postings as some corrections in the list have been made.

I think we will run the Demo game using the Twilight of the Sun King rules on the day, see more here.

Link to Kalisz Bases Polemos GNW and TOTSK

With regards to the Polemos Basing the following act as guidelines.  Note that the leader/commander bases are markers indicating where the leaders are located on the field of battle and not active combat units.  I tend to base them with 1 to 3 models on the front row representing quality (1 – Poor, 2 – Average and 3 – Excellent) and models on the back row representing Tempo points (used in the Polemos rules).

The extract below is from the Polemos GNW Rulebook (Page 5).

“The actual ratio of figures to real men will vary depending on how many figures you put on a base.  A base represents the following: 
 
 A base of infantry, except skirmishing infantry, represents between 400 and 600 men.  They can be a single large battalion, a pair of smaller ones or a group of subunits up to this approximate strength.  
 
 A base of cavalry, dismounted dragoons and skirmishing infantry represents two to three squadrons or similar groups, representing 200 to 300 men.  A cavalry base is assumed to include wide intervals between squadrons, allowing friendly cavalry bases to pass through each other.  
 
 An artillery base represents four to eight guns.  The number of guns that a base represents varies depending on the size of the real guns.  Four heavy guns will be represented by one base.  While eight light guns will also be represented by one base.

And there was another thing…

A delivery of some Corrugated Sheet Metal

I get a fair few deliveries from Amazon (google it if you are not familiar with them) and I noted that their packaging have a very nice and tight corrugation.  I have seen this being used in the past to simulate corrugated sheets but had not tried it myself.  I wanted to give it a try as I want to expand on the terrain I have for using with the Scrappers Mutant 1984 project I am working on (See more about it here).

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Armed with a sharp knife I set slowly cut away the cover sheet on one side (I hope it is bleeding obvious but be careful when you use a knife).

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After a few minutes I had plenty of uncovered sheets (I only cut them on one side).

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After this I cut out small 40 by 20 mm pieces.

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I got a nice pile of them.

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I then built a simple test structure using some coffee stirrers (like the ones you get at Starbucks), matches, and my corrugated sheets. Using superglue and PVA to stick the things together,  The two colorful pieces on top are made from some Kinder Egg rubbish the Small One had lying around – I and the Little One speculated that these could be part of some semi-portable wind based energy system. They had some interesting detail that will look good when drybrushed later.

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I gave it a spray with a grey primer and I think this will paint up reasonably well (here with some unfinished miniatures to understand scale) and I think it looks ok with the 28mm figures.

Next week the Scrappers rules should arrive (from Amazon) with some new building materials! (although the little structure hardly caused a dent in the pile).

/ All revved up and certainly a place to go to…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kalisz 1706 at Salute 2017 – Dusting of the Miniatures Part 3 and some Lager

I recently found out that there used to be a Lager named after the famous Swedish Field Marshal that is one of my favourite soldiers from the Great Northern War era, namely Stenbock (there is a very nice online article about him here).

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Stenbock at Helsinborg 1710

 

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I could not find out who the brewers were but stumbled across a few others with slightly different spelling.

Stepherd Neame used to brew a beer called Steinbock Lager that was described as “…a light, crisp, refreshing lager with an underlying sweetness, a slight floral tang and a clean finish”.  It is no longer produced (see more here).

Monsteiner Steinbock is another Lager.  This one is made in Switzerland with nice artwork on it (more here).  And another one, but I digress…

I really wanted to talk about Laagers, defined by Wikipedia as…

A wagon fort is a mobile fortification made of wagons arranged into a rectangle, a circle or other shape and possibly joined with each other, an improvised military camp. It is also known as a laager (from Afrikaans) (English: leaguer).

At the battle of Kalisz the Pro-Swedish Polish-Lithanian Army established a Laager outside the town (of Kalisz) with a square of Wagons and some quickly raised earthworks. To represent this I used some of the Wagons and tents from Baccus and made a small (fully modular) representation of the Camp.

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The Saxons

The Saxon contingent are all Cavalry and are commanded by Augustus the Strong Supported by General Brandt.

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Augustus at the Battle of Kalisz 1706

 

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Dragons

The Dragon units (all red uniforms with facing/cuff colours in parenthesis) –

Leibregiment (white), Milkau (yellow), von der Goltz (black)

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von Brause (lemon yellow) and von Schulenburg (straw)

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Cuirassiers

The Cuirassiers units (all red uniforms with facing/cuff colours in parenthesis) 

Chevaliergarde/Garde du Corps (blue/red/white), Leibregiment (white), Kurprinz (yellow), von Damitz (Bleumourant), Königin (straw)

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Kurprinz (yellow) ,von Eichstädt (Coffee Brown), Gersdorff (grey) and Prince Alexander (green).

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That leaves us the Russian contingent of 32 dragoons that I packed before I took any pictures. I suppose you have to come to the Salute show to see them!

A Map!

At Salute we are the Wyre Forest Wargames Club and we are in location GG15 – it is just below the upper red G (in the circle) on the floorplan/map of the show. It is only 2 weeks to go and if you do go, come by and say hello. Further details on the show and how you can get tickets can be found here.

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On the Lager thread I did find a nice little bottle at the Tank Museum last week (more here) – it is made by the Dorset Brewing Company (DBC) and is called Landship.   The name comes from the Landship Committee that was established in February 1915 by Winston Churchill, then First Lord of the Admiralty, with the purpose of developing armored fighting vehicles to use on the Western Front.  The work culminated in the development of the first tanks.  Tank, by the way, was a code name for the vehicles.

TANKS

I found an inspirational review of this beer on the net (link here) and decided, for research purposes, to have a go myself and I do agree with the sentiment of the review.  If nothing else it is a cool bottle.

/ Until next, Cheers and do not drink (too much) whilst gaming!

Appendix – Below is a little summary of the units that will be present on the table, 207 bases in total including small bases for leaders and artillery.  The basing are in line with the Polemos Rules where a base is about 200-300 cavalry (about 2 squadrons) or 400-600 (one battalion) infantry. In Twilight of the Sun King two of these bases, in general, forms a fighting unit.  Leaders are Poor, Average or Excellent, The second value is the tempo contribution as per the Polemos rules.

Kalisz
Side Element Bases Type Description Class. Quality
Pro-Swedish Swedish Contingent 1 Leader Mardefelt CiC Ex:4
Pro-Swedish Swedish Contingent 1 Leader  Krassow Cmdr Av:2
Pro-Swedish Swedish Contingent 2 Infantry Pommerska GP T / Dt
Pro-Swedish Swedish Contingent 1 Infantry Swiss GP T
Pro-Swedish Swedish Contingent 1 Infantry French GP T
Pro-Swedish Swedish Contingent 2 Infantry German GP T
Pro-Swedish Swedish Contingent 4 Cavalry Södra Skånska Cav GH T / Dt
Pro-Swedish Swedish Contingent 3 Cavalry Bremiska Dragoon GH T / Dt
Pro-Swedish Swedish Contingent 4 Cavalry Verdiska Dragoon GH T / Dt
Pro-Swedish Swedish Contingent 4 Cavalry Pommerska Dragoon GH V / Dt
Pro-Swedish Swedish Contingent 1 Gun Light Gun LG V
Pro-Swedish Swedish Contingent 1 Gun Field Gun FG V
Pro-Swedish Pro-Swedish Polish 1 Leader Potocki Cmdr P:2
Pro-Swedish Pro-Swedish Polish 1 Leader Lubomirski Cmdr A:1
Pro-Swedish Pro-Swedish Polish 16 Cavalry Pancerni EH T
Pro-Swedish Pro-Swedish Polish 4 Cavalry Hussar GH V
Pro-Swedish Pro-Swedish Polish 2 Cavalry Jazda Lekka LHx T
Pro-Swedish Pro-Swedish Polish 2 Gun Light Gun LG T
Pro-Swedish Pro-Swedish Polish 1 Gun Field Gun FG T
Pro-Swedish Pro-Swedish Lithuanian 1 Leader Sapieha Cmdr A:1
Pro-Swedish Pro-Swedish Lithuanian 4 Cavalry Petyhori / Pancerni GH / EH T
Pro-Swedish Pro-Swedish Lithuanian 2 Cavalry Hussar GH V
Pro-Swedish Pro-Swedish Lithuanian 2 Cavalry Jazda Lekka LHx T
Pro-Swedish Pro-Swedish Lithuanian 3 Cavalry Dragoon D T
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 1 Leader Augustus the Strong CiC + Monarch A:3
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 1 Leader Brandt Cmdr P:1
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 1 Cavalry Chevaliergarde / Garde du Corps H E
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 1 Cavalry Leib H E
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 2 Cavalry Kurprinz H T
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 2 Cavalry Damitz H T
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 2 Cavalry Konigin H T
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 2 Cavalry Eichstadt H T
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 2 Cavalry Gersdorff H T
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 2 Cavalry Prince Alexander H T
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 1 Cavalry Leib D T
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 2 Cavalry Milkau D T
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 2 Cavalry Goltz D T
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 2 Cavalry Brause D T
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 2 Cavalry Schulenburg D T
Anti-Swedish Saxon Contingent 1 Gun Light Gun LG T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 1 Leader Menshikov Allied Cmdr A:4
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 1 Leader C Avalry Commander Cmdr P:1
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 1 Leader Cossack Lord Cmdr A:3
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 1 Leader Kalmuck Lord Cmdr P:1
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 1: Moskovski (542) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 3: Vladimirski (551) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 4: Pskovski (548) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 6: Novgorodski (544) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 7: Troitski (543) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 8: Astrakhanski (550) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 9: Siberianski (546) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 10: Smolenski (558) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 11: St. Peterburgski (547) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 13: Vjatski (554) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 14: Nizhni Novgorodski (553) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 15: Yaroslavlski (592) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 18: Ingermanlandski (565) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 19: Nevski (573) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 21: Ryanzanski (574) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Cavalry 25: Vologodski (576) D T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 22 Cavalry Kalmucks LHf T
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 15 Cavalry Cossack LHx R
Anti-Swedish Russian Contingent 2 Gun Light Gun LG T
Anti-Swedish Anti-Swedish Polish 1 Leader Siemianski Allied Cmdr P:3
Anti-Swedish Anti-Swedish Polish 1 Leader Rzewuski Cmdr P:1
Anti-Swedish Anti-Swedish Polish 1 Leader Smigielski Cmdr A:1
Anti-Swedish Anti-Swedish Polish 16 Cavalry Pancerni EH T
Anti-Swedish Anti-Swedish Polish 4 Cavalry Hussar GH V
Anti-Swedish Anti-Swedish Polish 5 Cavalry Jazda Lekka LHx T
Anti-Swedish Anti-Swedish Polish 4 Cavalry Dragoon D R
Anti-Swedish Anti-Swedish Polish 4 Cavalry Dragoon D T
Anti-Swedish Anti-Swedish Polish 3 Cavalry Horse H T
Anti-Swedish Anti-Swedish Polish 2 Gun Light Gun LG T
Anti-Swedish Anti-Swedish Polish 1 Gun Field Gun FG T

 

 

 

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Kalisz 1706 at Salute 2017 – Battleboards and the Swedes, Tanks and Mutant 1984

Long weekend of Rugby with the annual ‘long distance’ tournament with the Little Ones – this year held in Bournemouth.  The Little One had a blast and made us proud as always. A weekend in Dorset is never wrong and we had to sneak into the Tank Museum in Bovington for a quick look.  We did not do much hobby related this week, so in no particular order a few shots of the (a) Kalisz Battle boards for Salute and some Swedes, (b) some pictures from the Tank Museum and (c) some progress on the Mutant 1984 project.

Kalisz Battle boards and Swedes

I got the 2″ by 2″ boards out this weekend. They have been in the attic since the table was laid out at Joy of Six in 2014 – some warping evident and a damaged bridge but not beyond unacceptable and the bridge can be fixed.  Now I have to find the buildings for the two villages and Kalisz itself – I wonder where they are?

I also got the Swedish (few) elements out and realized that I need to do some flags for the infantry – it seems like we ran the game last time without infantry standards (Perhaps that was the reason the Swedes lost?).

 

Bovington Tank Museum

We went to the Tank Museum in Saumur last year and loved it (see blog entry here), the one in Bovington is equally impressive if not better.  From the perspective of telling history and putting the tank into a perspective the Bovington experience is brilliant.  Here are a few pictures of what we found particularly interesting.  Go there if you can (link here).  T(h)ank you Bovington – we had a great day!

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Mutant 1984 – Ulvriket Patrol – Work in Progress

Work in progress on the next unit for this little diversion. This is the Ulvriket Patrol with some further detailing and basing remaining but a small step forward.  As discussed in the previous blog entry (see here) basically WW2 Americans in Greatcoat and a WW2 German Officer. I used a Russian WW2 Vehicle Green for the Coats and Khaki for details and helmets. Looks familiar but odd.

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The infantry unit based on Artizan Design Americans and a German Officer.

 

Then the mutated element with conversions (I will give further details for what I used in the blog update for these when they are finalized).

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The Mutants – A gorilla (Crooked Dice head swap), the wingman (do not remember where the wings are from), the pig (again from Crooked Dice) and the Goat (head and leg swap  with a Moonraker miniature).

 

/ All the very best

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Kalisz 1706 at Salute 2017 – Dusting off the Miniatures Part 1 – Hussars and other Exotic Cavalry

I spent some time assembling the forces needed for the Kalisz Battle over the weekend and think I found most of them but there are still a few of them missing in previous action – but I will/have to find them sooner or later as the Show is in 6 weeks.  A few of the spears (looking at the pictures) need to be bent back, but apart from that there are no major issues that need to be resolved.

For some background on the battle you can have a look at an earlier posting here.

This first part will show the more exotic units specific for this theatre, compare to War of the Spanish Succession (WSS) units. Perhaps the Swedes themselves would have fitted into this entry, but I will hold them back for now.

Codes refers to the Baccus catalogue of splendid 6mm stuff for this period (link here).  The combination of the GNW/WSS range (and a few packs from other ranges) offers a total coverage of everything you may need to represent all battles in Eastern Europe of the period (even the Pruth Campaign, with the Ottomans and Proxies). There is even a simple trick in doing some Swedish Karpus cavalry I may reveal in a later posting.

The rules references are to Polemos – Great Northern War (PGNW) and Twilight of the Sun King (TotSK).  I discuss these rules to some extent here and here.

(Winged) Hussars

6 bases Poles/Lithanian supporting the Warsaw Confederation that were against the King of Poland (Augustus II the Strong) and fought with the Swedes. The rest of the bases (4 No.) represent members of the anti-Swedish Sandomierz Confederation.

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These hussars are the heroes from Vienna in 1683 (see link here) where they played a key role in the dramatic climax of the battle as the spearpoint of an eighteen thousand strong cavalry charge (that from the receiving end must have looked absolutely terrifying and been a true spectacle to witness). These units are charging cavalry and have been based in a wedge formation (9 miniatures, 60 by 30mm base) to be easily identified (as if the wings were not enough!).

They hussars forms the elite element of any Polish-Lithuanian army.  Steel and shock is definitely the dish being served by these type of units.  In the rules they are classified as Galloping Horse (GH).  It is not clear whether they still wore their wings in this battle, but for the sake of look I have decided they did.

I have used a mixture of models – look at the GNP01 to GNP05 and pick the ones you like.

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Pancerni

These were the backbone of the Polish-Lithuanian cavalry arm and were medium cavalrymen.  Their name is derived from the Polish name for chainmail – “pancerz”.

In the PGNW/TotSK rules they are classified as Eastern Horse (EH) and to distinguish them on the field of battle I have based them in three lines of three as can be shown in the picture.  This type are not powerful in the charge but are better in continued melee and maneuvering compared to normal Western Horse of the period.

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In the battle there are Pancerni units in both of the armies fielded (GNP06 – Pancerni, was used from the Polish range). There were based on a 60 by 30mm base and arranged in three groups of three. Some of them are classified (3 No.) as Galloping infantry (GNP07 – Petyhorcy) and are organized in a wedge formation like the hussars.

Warsaw Confederation (Pro-Swedish) – 21 bases

Sandomierz Confederation (Anti-Swedish) – 17 bases

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Light Horse Units

There were a few different types of Light cavalry present at the battle – these are open formation skirmish units and tend to avoid close combat if possible. In the two rulesets they are classified as Light Horse (LH). I have based them on 60 by 60mm bases and with 7 miniatures in open order (apart from the 3 Vallacker units that have 8 miniatures, including the Swedish Officers). The types are:

Kalmyks – These are light cavalry units from the Kalmyk Khanate, with Mongolian roots,  and are allies to the Russians. These play no active part in the battle and are guarding the Swedish potential retreat on the other side of the river.   These were made by using various codes from the Baccus Ancient ranges, basically anything on a horse with a Bow (e.g. AHU01 and  AHU02 – Hunnic Horse Archers). Useless for the battle but they do look good en masse. But calm down, these and the Cossacks, will make another guest appearance for the Poltava Battle (but that luckily is some time away).

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Cossacks – these are light irregular cavalry units allied to the Russians. Similar story as for the Kalmyks. The miniatures used are the Cossacks from the Great Northern War range (GNR10 – Cossacks, they are with the Russians).

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Jazda Lekka – these are Polish-Lihtuanian light cavalry (Jazda Lekka, simply means light cavalry in Polish!). These will be part of the main battle but are not showing up in any large numbers. They are fighting as part of both armies (the code used are from the Great Northern War range, GNP08 – Unarmoured Cavalry, they are with the Poles). 7 on the anti-Swedish side and 3 on the Pro-Swedish side (I chose to make these like Vallacker with Swedish Officers).

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Other Projects

This terminator project is getting a little bit out of hand – but in a nice way! Well it must be since both I and the Little One are having fun. Got some more stuff to work on this week.

  • 2 No. Humvees from Pig-Iron (link here), with additional stuff like the smoke grenade launchers, assault rifles and stowage from a Tamiya model accessory kit. The models are very nice, no clean-up required and you just need to glue on the wheels, and very competitively priced at £9.50 each. The miniature is from the Terminator Set and is about 28mm scale.  Not sure how we will paint these yet, but the Little One is thinking!

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  • Some cars arrived that we ordered from China (“1:50 scale Train Layout cars” should be enough to find them again). These are likely to get smashed up a little and end up like the ones we showed last week (see here). £7 all in from China.

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  • We also found a fork lift that seemed to scale reasonably well. This one will add some character to the overall proceedings.

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  • Finally, we checked out the relatively new Walking Dead miniatures game and they have a Scenery Pack that looked interesting (the picture show half of the contents and these will be great for the expanding rubble and car wrecks) so we got one of those as well.  We got the set from eBay at a very good price.

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/ Next time some more 6mm units for Kalisz and hopefully we have done a game of The Men who would be Kings, take care.

Terminators, Winter War Progress and Chevaux de Fries

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More Terminators

Following on from the last blog about terminators, the Little One and I have been doing a few more games of Terminator Genisys and we are still enjoying it.  I actually ended up buying two more miniature sets, the T1000 (the liquid metal one from the second movie or to be correct mimetic polyalloy) & Infiltrator as well as the Special Endoskeletons set. I have also dusted off the old movies and although the first one (here) feels a little bit dated, with regards to the CGI, it is still a damn good movie. The second movie (here) I think is brilliant and the Little One is looking forward seeing the rest.

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I have realized that if I want the Little One to get into this hobby it is not by trying to force feed him with 18th century linear tactics battles where we abstract the unit with a few models representing many or elegant mechanisms with built-in firing, damage, moral etc. Instead I think I need to, as well, offer him simple skirmish type of rules where each model represents a man, or a woman or in this case a machine, in a setting that excites him and he understands (the key here is ..as well!).  It is fantastic when he gets it and we have not had so much fun since we first played X-wing or Saga together.

Finnishing (and Sovietic) touches

However, science fiction aside, I did feel obliged to continue my Chain of Command Finns and Russians so I could get some games of Chain of Command under my belt – I added some snow flock to the bases and made an entrenchment with some floor insulation blue polystyrene and a plastic base from a DVD cover (Terminator 2 – who needs covers anyway!) – I think I will make more like this. I covered it with glue and added sand, painted it chocolate brown and dry brushed it white and then added some snow around it (actually a mix of snow flock, matte modge podge and a few drops of off-white paint). Here it is.

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The entrenchment in its full glory! The surface under is a trimmed part of a Snow Mat from Terrain Mat (link here) I bought many years ago to do some GNW winter battles on. I will use this mat for my Chain of Command battles as I think it looks very good.
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As above with some Soviets enjoying its protection!

Here is the first picture in Colour (I need to add some snow to that roof, to make it look authentic).

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A section of Soviets advancing through a Finnish Village.
Ruokojärvellä JSP/Er P S.
House during the Winter War, the picture is from SA-kuva (Finnish Armed Forces Photographs) and their webpage is here.

Chevaux de Frise

I got a question through to the blog last week that I thought potentially had some general interest. The question was about how I did the Chevaux de Frise (link to Wikipedia here) shown in some of the pictures in the Polemos Great Northern War rulebook (link here).  These were shots based on the armies I did for the Fraustadt 1706 battle where the whole Saxon/Russian front line was standing behind these mobile defensive structures.

Peter Berry kindly included some pictures taken by my daughter of Swedes battling Saxons and Russians in wintery conditions as well as some Polish Panzerni and Winged Hussars in a more summery setting.

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A page from the Rules

This is a high level, but I hope sufficient discussion, on how I made them (but first a few notes):

  • They are based on 60mm by 10mm bases, these are 2mm thick (the same thickness I use for all my bases)
  • They are not to scale, i.e. these are in fact large compared to the models. However, in my opinion, it does work visually.
  • Be careful when if you embark on trying to make these. Plan your work to avoid drilling or cutting your fingers.  Also when you cut brass rod pieces make sure you are careful as small pieces may fly all over the place and cause direct damage whilst in flight or indirectly when they plant themselves into your foot at a later date.  I speak from hard earned experience on (all!) these matters.
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The finished product with a base of Saxon Infantry

They are basically done by using model making matchsticks (That are about 5cm x 2mm x 2mm) – you can buy about 1000 of them at ebay for about £4. You need one matchstick for each base. You also need round brass rod (0.5mm) or equivalent. You will need a more than you think – normally they are sold in lengths of about 30cm and each will give you 25 pikes/spears at 12mm. Each chevaux de Frise base will need 28 pikes. 10 No. 30cm rods will give you enough to do 8 to 9 bases.

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0.5mm round brass rod

Mark up the matchstick in the middle and make seven lines with the same distance from each other and make a mark on the line in the middle.

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Green marking

Flip the matchstick 90 degrees and extend the original lines and make a mark in the middle between the original lines (I used a red pen to do this).

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Red Marking

Cut it in half (do the same mark-up for the other side, or do both at the same time) – use a razor saw and cut it gently to avoid damage – do not use clippers.

Drill the holes using a 0.6mm drill bit with a model drill. It is tempting to use a sharp object and pierce through a hole but it more than often damages the matchstick, so go for the drill approach.

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Drilled matchstick piece and a brass rod piece

Cut small pieces from the brass rod. I made mine about 12mm long and stick them in your holes.

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Nearly there… (you could stop here and use it as an improvised hand weapon for your larger scale miniatures!)

Then do the rest and slab on some PVA/White glue to make it sturdy and avoid the rod pieces to slide off, then paint it and base it up and you are done.

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Fast forward and …. There!

/ Hope that was of some use