23 September 2006

A little painting and thoughts on standards and guidons.

Happy first day of fall! I have finally managed to get in a little time on my new infantry unit, Stollen’s 32 figure Jaegers zu Fuss! Still in the very early stages, but, dare I say, they’re going to look good. I’ve painted the coats of all 32 figures Humbrol “Rifle Green”, using a tin of this color that I purchased at MiniFigs in Southampton, UK in January 1989! Amazing how the stuff lasts if tins are sealed tightly.

In addition, I “test painted” one figure’s breeches, small clothes, facings, and turnbacks light blue. Parenthetically, this was the first time I’ve used my new Games Workshop paints. Anyway, the test figure already looks fantastic! And I haven’t even painted the flesh areas yet. I’ll try to paint all flesh and the light blue areas in another painting session this evening after dinner while my poor wife grades student essays and prepares a conference paper.

On another note, I’ve finally decided how I’ll do my standards and cavalry guidons. I’m going to use designs for several minor German states from Warflag and Napflags. “Why?” you ask. Well, I like the way the various designs look, it’s easier, and they’re better than anything I can paint freehand. Since my planned armies are imaginary anyway, it doesn’t really matter to me that the flags were really carried by actual units in passed conflicts. Only hardcore 18th century and Napoleonic-era vexologists will know the difference anyway!

The molded flags of the Revell standard bearers cut away very easily, and it should not be hard to replace the flagpoles with suitable wire (re: paperclips). I’ve also sent e-inquiries to Ellerburn Armies (Hinchliffe) and Front Rank, regarding the25/28mm finials they produce. So, eventually, my figures will have some nice looking standards and guidons to fight for and protect in hand-to-hand melees and cavalry charges. Can’t wait!


MurdocK said...

The paperclips plan can work, but a small warning, may I give?

I used some paperclips as flagpoles once before. In large action where the 'units' were only cardstock painted different colors, the flagpoles allowed command stands to 'jump-off' the table. I got 100's of clips for free with an order of office paper. I bent them and clipped them to the right shape and length then painted them with the cardstock stands. After 3 months the clips started to rust thru the paint and 'blistered it' cracking and flaking the paint off in places. Not all the clips did the rusting, but enough to put me off the use of them for such a thing again.

I have since only used piano wire, you can get it at music stores and or some hobby shops, I have also seen it at home repair stores, generally about $.25 to $.85 for a 3 foot length (depending on gauge). While it may still rust, it will take a very long time since the wires are meant for use in musical instruments they tend to be of higher quality. I use it for flagpoles on nearly all my infantry, to date I have about 40 flagstand 25mm guys with them and the oldest, about 3 years, has not cracked at all.

I have totally used the napflag site and will continue to do so, as it will allow me to make up new flags for confederation troops and other minor nations easily.

My first Saxon troops I painted their infantry flags, based on images I scanned from a text covering the period. Took way to long, was far more tedious than I ever want to be again.

Only the most dedicated will likely paint every flag of every one of thier troops, but since I want to game more with mine sooner rather than later I shall not quibble about 'paper' computer printed battleflags.

see Murdock'S blog at:
Murdock'S MarauderS

Bluebear Jeff said...

Depending upon your scale (15mm, 25mm, etc.) another option is very light welding rod. It is very stiff and has lasted very well for me.

Many people also use "florists wire" . . . I'm not really sure what this is; but its quite popular.

If you are going to use the free downloadable paper flags from Warflags (which I think is very sensible), two suggestions:

One is to consider making the flags a bit larger than they were in history -- flags really look good and making them a bit larger is often quite effective.

Second, don't make them "flat", use some small dowling to mould waves in to them -- it really helps the esthetics of the flag.

As to the flags you download, remember, if you a decent graphics program on your computer, you can change colors so that you may use the same pattern over and over again with differing color choices.

Have fun!

-- Jeff


Grand Duchy of Stollen 1768 said...

Thank you for the flag tips guys! I will look into welding rod, florists', and piano wire. Oh yes, I'll also "animate" the flags and examine the graphics programs on my computer more closely. As much as I like the designs I've chosen, it would be cool to change a few colors, so that the standards and guidons in question are tailored a bit more to my, err. . . my troops' aesthetic tastes!


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