15 January 2010

The January thaw. . .

The Garrison artillery crew are now all done, painted, more or less, as the Von Kleist artillery contingent, and are waiting for their guns to be issued. Said ordinance should arrive in the next few days.

Yes, the inevitable January thow has set in here in Central Illinois, so Zum Stollenkeller is habitable once more. Sadly, however, not much painting has taken place this week which has been a busy one. The start of the new academic term, caring for Young Master Paul, the conclusion of The Outlaws' visit, and all that. But things are slowly returning to normal, helped by the more temperate climate.

My Garrison artillery crew (shown above) are all painted and varnished and now await the issue of their two guns, which I hope to paint and varnish this weekend. Next week, it's time to begin work on that 60-figure regiment of Huzzah! Prussians that I've blathered on about for some time now. I am also about ready to order enough RSM figures to replace my two previously finished Revell plastic artillery crews, which I'll retire, though the MiniFig guns will continue to see use for a while. At some point, I'll very likely replace these with Hinchliffe cannon.

Another round of Charles Grant and Phil Olley-inspired built-up areas, almost ready for painting but for a few more chimneys and a roof or two.

What little time I've had has seen me at work on a few new buildings to add to my tabletop collection. These have been inspired by Charles Grant's short piece on flat-pack buildings in the recent Wargamers Annual. Like my last batch of built-up areas from December 2006-January 2007, once again these are based on old Germanic buildings in the former East Prussia -- present day Poland, the Kaliningrad Region, and a bit of Lithuania plus Riga and Tallin. In many cases, the old buildings still stand, though either in abandoned disrepair, or repurposed. In the case of many old churches with beautiful and complex red brick gables, which were constructed by the Teutonic Knights or Knights of the Sword and became Lutheran at the reformation, are now either Catholic again, or Russian Orthodox, depending on where the church stands on the current map of Northeastern Europe. But I digress.

This time around, I've kept the structures fairly small, about 2.25" x 3.25", so they won't take up undue space on the tabletop. The ruined base inside each shell is large enough to hold eight infantry figures, half a company according to Young and Lawford's rules outlined in Charge!, my own personal wargaming touchstone. I've also taken a stab at making one building on an oddly shaped base. None of the corners are 90 degree angles. And the reason for this is simple. If you've ever wandered around any old towns, cities, or villages on the European continent, you know that the buildings and streets are not straight. They lean, meander, and take sudden crazy turns, which make no sense. So, I took a crack at a structure like this myself. Not too difficult to do, save for a bit of trial and error with the roof and chimney angles. The only slight difficulty came in getting the cuts on the two roof pieces just right, so that there were no gaps between them and the walls of the structure in question.

Finally, Freikorps of the Seven Years War: Hannover and Prussia by Bruce Bassett-Powell arrived in the mail yesterday, and it is a fascinating little booklet full of text and many watercolor illustrations, several inspired by Knoetel. Ample inspiration for fictitious uniforms that look vaguely Prussian, but not quite. Can't wait for the in-transit Bleckwenn on the SYW Prussian army title to arrive too. Ok, I hear Young Master Paul calling, so it's time to cut this post short. Happy weekend painting/gaming everyone!


ColCampbell50 said...


At least the gunners can do some "dry fire" training while awaiting their guns so their time won't be totally wasted.

Nice buildings. I look forward to their finished photos.


andygamer said...

Yes, the Bleckwenn is an excellent resource that will not disappoint.

Frankfurter said...

Very interesting looking buildings.
What is the material? Foam core?

Fitz-Badger said...

Nice buildings! Looking forward to seeing them painted.
And you beat me to it. I just finished a new building myself and another bridge. I'll post pics of my building later today or tomorrow, just need to take photos.

Grimsby Mariner said...

Neat buildings & excellent figures. Whatever the weather there is always an excuse to disappear and apply paint to lead.

John Clements said...

Hi Stokes.

It was really nice to see those Garrison figures again (I had a Garrison Prussian army many years ago) and you've made a really good job of them in their new coats. I must say they look very impressive and I'll hope to see them do their stuff in the field in due course.

Conrad Kinch said...

Very handsome buildings Stokes. What did you make them out of? They look very reminiscent of the sort of architecture Mrs. Kinch and I saw in Streslau while we were on holidays after Phase I.

tidders said...

Like the Garrison artillery crew. Those buildings will looke godd when finished.

-- Allan


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