Wednesday, 23 December 2015

The tally

I'm unlikely to get a large amount of painting done between now and the new year so it seems appropriate to publish the tally:

38 15mm tanks and AFV
5 artillery batteries
64 15mm Hoplites
54 bases of 6mm
753 Spencer Smiths
76 28mm
320 1/72
5 40mm

For a total of 1315 individual bases or figures.
However I bought:
500 Spencer Smiths
100 20mm
200 28mm

And sold over 500 figures.

So I ended up  (I think) with a deficit!
I think it's the first year I've ever been on target to be lead/plastic neutral.
My painting time has reduced and I'm more productive so my plans are as follows:

Paint all the Napoleonic Spencer Smiths.
Paint and game with the Acw figures
Paint and game with the FPW bases
Try to get at least one 3-4 hour gaming session in per month

Happy Hanukkah and see you in the new year

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

More end of year thoughts

Just a few more things that have occurred to me, viz a viz wargaming. This year I have been searching for rules for the periods I've been focused on. The most tricky has been for the late  19th century since ideally I'd like a set of rules that would cover both the Acw and the fpw. That way I'd only have to remember one set so stand a chance of getting it right more often than not. The more I look the more I feel that the only one that might do it is Black Powder, for the reason that it is very generic to start with. Hopefully the Acw supplement is not far off so I can carry on painting till then.

The hoplites have proved a welcome diversion from the 6mm stuff, but I'm itching to have a go at some 30mm Acw Spencer smiths, as well as some plastic Perry versions. My big issue is that the Kalistra 12mm range is very pretty and fits more with the big battle vision. I suppose I could use the 30mm for large skirmishes of a couple units a side in a Longstreet campaign but will have to wait and see. I think the best thing to do is to put the Spencer Smiths next on the paint queue and get a couple of pack of 12mm To do at the same time. He losing scale can then go on eBay!

Monday, 14 December 2015

End of the year approaches

We're having more work done on the house so my chances of getting my painting mojo into full swing are low. I've got 6mm Prussians almost complete and some 15mm Hoplites from war and empire and basecoated. The Hoplites have been great fun to paint. Even in my hands they look good. I've decided on 8 per 60x30 base, so the standard pack  of 24 will give me 3 bases including command. I might go less figures on the same base size for loose order or skirmishing troops. I think cavalry will be four to the base. With standard bases I could use them for several sets of rules.

The Six week war project is ongoing. I think I'll see how BBB works with my base sizes (60x45) and leave the rest of the measurements the same. I'll report back when I've had a chance to game a decent battle. 

The Fatman is approaching, yet this year I've not really asked for anything hobby related. If my wife is desperate I've said to get some landwehr command for the plastic Prussians but otherwise it just a few books. I did ask for the Perry's battle in a box but doubt that will come.

After Christmas will be Crusade, and looking at the list of traders it might be more worthwhile going this year than last. I think much will depend on what comes for Xmas and how much I get done between now and then.

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Ch ch changes

If you've followed my random thoughts on wargaming then you might remember me swearing off the smaller scales and nailing my colours to the 28mm mast. Yes well, I think I've now realised that different periods need different scales. I tried 28mm and 10mm for the FPW, and wasn't that keen on either. Perhaps it was that they were some of my earliest armies before I really cared about painting consistently, or perhaps it was that I never had enough to to inspire me. Anyway, I've recently been dabbling in 6mm for the same period. Using Baccus figures and 60x45 bases, I can get somethings that looks like a regiment to a base. Even with my simplistic basing technique (brown paste and a bit of green painted sand), it looks right. I've decided that six strips with line to command being 5:1, and then 8 skirmishes in front is the correct thing to do. It might be my enthusiasm but I'm cranking out units by the score. I think I'm up to a division of infantry with a couple of regiments of cuirassiers and some j├Ągers.

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Rules rules rules

I've been on a bit of a hunt for good rules for the periods that are exciting me. I want one that are thematic and easy to play so the boys will enjoy them but then I keep coming over all old school. I think I'm going to go with In the grand Manner for Napoleonics with 30mm Spencer Smiths bulked out by perry plastics, although I might dabble in Black Powder. For the late 19th century I think 1866/70 May edge it over BP, and I don't like the idea of the command roundel in Zouave 2 so expect to see those on eBay soon. 
The great clear out continues with the 20mm Napoleonics gone and it likely that the majority of the 28mm WW2 will follow as I've discovered the joys of Rapid Fire in 15mm, and can also use those figures for IaBsm if needed. I think if the Battlefront Cold War rules and figures are any good, then the 28mm Russians could follow 

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Old school rules ok?

I've written before about how I've a love for thee old school look of plastic spencer smith miniatures. Over the last few months I've been fortunate enough to pick up a sizeable number of these figures and have finally got around to basing them. Following my exposure to the Grand Manner rules at the wargames holiday centre, I've decided to base them for this rule set. This means that French are 6 to a base with 6 bases to a regiment, whilst Russians are 8 to a base with again 6 bases a regiment.
I've also rediscovered my love of 6mm with several bases of FPW figures crossing the painting table. 

Tuesday, 28 April 2015


I may have said a few posts ago that I didn't know which scale to go for this period. I've now had a chance to get some paint on the 6mm figures and have gone with the layout you see in the photos. I think this is a great comprise between having formed and unformed units. I think each base can represent a battalion with its skirmisher screen and therefore the 4 bases I've done makes a brigade, which is something I've never had in this scale before. I think this might reflect my changing views on painting an d scale. In the past I liked 28mm figures because I could take my time and hopefully do a good job on them, but since I've started with Spencer Smiths I've become more focused on just getting the figures on the table. 
I've put the 28mm FPW figures on eBay as I had not enough for a decent battle, merely skirmishes, and that's not what the FPW is about for me. Now all I need to do is decide on the rules..

Tuesday, 31 March 2015


I've acquired some more 40mm Napoleonics and am using the wash technique again. I really must admit that I like this way of painting but I'm not sure I can translate it to smaller scales. 
I've got a few Baccus 6mm FPW figures as I want to do this era but again am not sure if the scales right for me. I think I'll paint up a few bases then have a go at the 15mm ones I got at Crusade, before seeing which I like more.
The 20mm El Cid figures are painting up nicely and I've gone for 2 on a 40x20 base, as I've lots of these and can go 40x40 for the cavalry. 
I got some bases that I think will be perfect for Blucher but am not sure what size troops to go with. The more I look at the rules I feel that 10mm might be best to give that massed ranks feel, and have 1 base per regiment. 

Thursday, 12 March 2015

The state of the hobby

It's now mid March and I realised I had not blogged for a while. In my last post I said I'd lost my mojo and that's pretty much the same thing. I've been buying stuff and so should be inspired but there isn't anything new that grabs me.
I went to Crusade with Tom, and it was as I feared. The number of traders was down and the choice of stuff even further reduced. If you ignore war machine and hordes, and GW stuff then the choice was really slim. I picked up some 15mm FPW figures although I think I'll probably end up doing this era in 6mm to get the big battle feel. I also got some of the em4 ACW figures as at £5 for 20 you can't really go wrong, even if the thought of painting the folded flags fills me with horror. I might have to drill out the premade flag in some of them. 

I've also expanded into 20mm ElCid thanks to EBay and this might be the thing that gets me going again. The chance to paint simple block colours including purples and oranges is very tempting. I've got a job lot so should have enough for a decent Arab army. I've decided on 2 figures on a 40x20 base for the infantry and probably 2 on a 40x40 base for cavalry. If I use some movement trays I can then go with either Hail Caeser or Clash of Empires. 
Next week I'm away with work so no painting then and then it's the Featherstone weekend! The only thing I don't know yet is if I want to be the Paras or 30corps!

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

No mojo

We've moved out of our house for a short while as there are building works going on. This means I can't paint:(! I was looking through the lead mountain and realised that given last years stats it would take me 3 years to clear and I haven't had my 28mm winter wars stuff yet. 
Crusade is at the end of the month, and to be honest if it wasn't that the boys want to go, I wouldn't bother. Looking at the list of traders it's less than last year. I might be able to get some 20mm Napoleonics but with no Dave Thomas my chances of picking up any more WSS plastics is low.

Friday, 2 January 2015

2014 a year in review

I've managed to total up my paint in stats for this year and thought I'd share with he world.
936 28mm 
500 15mm and 19 tanks
42 40mm
118 20mm

So as you  can see I've had a fairly productive year despite losing my mojo for part of the year. New eras have been 28mm Landsknechts and 20mm Napoleonics. I'm hoping that I've not chosen the wrong scale for the latter and that with the 200th anniversary of Waterloo coming up, Will at Plastic soldier will release 20mm Napoleonic figures,  but knowing my luck he'll only do 15mm!
I think that this year may also see the ongoing rationalisation of the collection and I'll post as it continues.