Wednesday, 25 May 2011

More 'Yanks' + new painting service!

I have been asked several times recently if I would accept commissions for painting miniatures. Having given this a lot of thought, (and finding myself with a fair bit of spare time on my hands), I have decided to offer a painting service. It will be limited only to the periods that I personally enjoy painting, mainly American Civil War, English Civil War and Napoleonics. I'm going to offer an excellent value price on 15mm ACW's as I love painting them! For full details please visit my new painting service blog (link at right), where you will see many examples of my work.

For ACW gamers I'm going to offer my services at the following rates:

15mm American Civil War.
Infantry figure .... £1.00 per figure.
Cavalry figure ......£1.75 per figure.
Gun + 4 crew........£ 5.00.

28mm ACW.
infantry figure .....£2.00 per figure.
Cavalry figure ......£3.00 per figure.
Gun + 4 crew .......£10.00.

High quality basing +10%.

Figures to be supplied please, price is for painting only.

The quality of the work will be as seen here and on my other blogs. I will only accept commissions that I can realistically deliver upon in an agreed time frame, I want to offer you excellent quality plus reliability of service. I am based in the Uk, down on the Kent coast. For further details please visit my new 'The War Artist' blog. For examples of my 28mm Napoleonic work please visit my'Napoleonic Wargames Project' blog.

I can be contacted initially at:

Thank you.

Here is my latest ACW unit, 500 men (25 figures) Union advancing/charging. Peter Pig figures of course!

Sunday, 22 May 2011

More terrain.

Been busy making some more fields and road sections, plus I made a surrounded area for my cornfield and I'm finally happy with it, no more tweaking! I really enjoy this aspect of the hobby and I want to try to achieve 'model railway' standard scenics overall. I do prefer this type of 'lay on' terrain and I want to keep everything modular on matching bases. The main baseboard has yet to be painted/flocked so I laid a few bits out on a green cloth, apologies for the poor lighting.

Everything is made from thick card bases then painted with a thick mix of PVA/paint then flocked in a variety of shades. Fences from cocktail sticks. The light green flock finishes everything nicely I think.

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Cornfield, take 3 !

I'm preparing a longer post discussing the various sets of ACW rules that I have used over the last 20 years or so, but in the meantime I'm still painting and getting started on building fence sections etc. I made a fence to surround my cornfield, and I trimmed down all the 'corn' bases so that they could fit closer together, I THINK it now looks acceptable, but I'd love an opinion or two on this? Should the corn be more yellow? Should I just bin it and find something closer to stands of corn?

I have on order a fair bit of scenic materials, various flocks, clump flock etc including some really good dry straw/ wheat flock to make a couple of wheatfields, this is an aspect of the hobby I really enjoy and I will shortly be making my road and stream sections, again using various flocks/grits/static grasses etc. Makes a change from endless painting of Blue and Grey/Butternut.

Pics: A battery of Union guns being urged on by the brigade commander deployed on the edge of THAT cornfield!

Saturday, 7 May 2011

Skirmishers & that cornfield again!

I like to paint at least one 'firing line' unit per brigade as they look better when in skirmish formation. JR2 allows any unit to skirmish or to deploy detached skirmishers of up to 2 stands. I prefer to use an entire unit as it simplifies play slightly. Skirmish formation is between 1 & 2 stands width apart. Regiments may also form 'extended line' formation when they need to 'shake down' slightly to cover an area wider than their frontage.

Here's the latest 300 man (15figures) regiment loading and firing. You can see I have placed some of the corn sections that I made earlier on my photo board in order to try and convince myself that it is actually useable, but I'm still not happy with it. It still looks too much like a forest of xmas trees to me! Its worth noting that US agricultural practice at that time was to plant corn/maize in clumps rather than neat rows as we see today. (Amazing what you can learn on TMP forum!).

Next week I will be ordering some Hovels buildings, a Games Workshop mat and more scenic materials for building fences etc. I'm now painting another 25 figure Union regiment.

All figures from 'Peter Pig' & painted by myself.

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Cornfield (take1) & more Union infantry.

I spent quite a bit of time working on a 'Christmas tree' cornfield as seen over on the TMP forum. very fiddly and I'm afraid to say that the result is far from convincing. I wanted individual clumps that could be removed as troops move inside the field, but I simply cannot see it as representing corn/maize at all! So, after hours of work its back to the drawing board. I will re-use the bases for trees and markers and probably look into using a plastic front door mat for the corn (see pic below from the 'Lardies' site, looks more convincing does it not? Shame I wasted so much time on it).

On a more positive note I have finished a 25 figure Union regiment advancing, and am starting next on a 15 figure Reb unit in firing line poses. These units look better as skirmishers. I'm close to finishing my first 2 brigades and soon hope to have them in action. The quality of the peter pig casting is superb, crisp and clean with no need at all to clean up or remove flash, a real pleasure to paint.

Here's a link to some 'Lardie' ACW pics, some great painting on this page, scroll down for the 'doormat' cornfield pics! Actually, all of the terrain shots are pretty inspiring.

Back soon with that Confederate firing line unit plus (hopefully) a more convincing cornfield.

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

More Rebs and Brigade command stands.

I have completed the 25 figure (500 man) Reb unit. 5 bases of 5 figures, I like the way JR2 uses a standard 5 bases with different numbers of figures, but it does rule out using other rule sets. I then decided to improve my command stands for brigades as you can see. I doubt that I will take this project beyond the Division per side stage as I want to follow up with Peter Pigs excellent AWI range.

Following up with a 25 figure Union regiment next but I'm also working on terrain items, more of that later. 150 figures painted so far so its going well.

(Note: the terrain tile is 25mm scale, I use it for my photographs which are taken in my 'light box' under a mixture of warm white and daylight 'blue' bulbs).

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Breechloaders in JR II.

I have quickly finished my 15 figure unit of 'Berdans Sharpshooters'. I painted these as a change from painting blue and grey, but also to add some variation into my planned games. Johnny Reb II are regimental level rules of course and as such feature a lot of detail at this level. Breechloaders are given the following advantages in the rules:

  • When firing prone, they fire at full effect (not quarter effect as for muzzle loaders)
  • They always receive an 'up 1 row shift' on the small arms firing chart to reflect increased rate of fire.
  • Their 'cover save roll' for fences and low walls is increased by 1 (to reflect the fact that they did not have to stand to reload).
  • When in skirmish order or 'extended line' the save throw is also increased by 1.
In addition units that are designated 'sharpshooters' also get advantages even if not armed with breechloaders. (A number of Confederate units were also designated 'sharpshooters' although armed with the standard rifle-musket):
  • When skirmishing their fire multiplier is x1 not x 1/2.
  • Units fired on by sharpshooters have their final save roll number reduced by 1.

Having been lucky enough to handle and fire a repro Sharps breechloader I know that its possible to stay much lower when loading compared with my trusty old .58 Enfield. To load the Enfield when kneeling required sliding the butt way behind you in order to reach the muzzle, then dragging it forward again to fit the cap etc. Although my Enfield was sold on a few years ago and I no longer hold the required shotgun certificate, the handling and firing of black powder weapons gives a useful insight into understanding wargame rules mechanisms I feel.

Pictures show the completed sharpshooters and an 1859 model Sharps rifle. I am now working on a 25 figure Confederate regiment, 5 bases of 5 figures.