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Showing posts from July, 2013

The Zichenauer Army Approaches. . .

The bucolic River Elbow, a tributary of the Lesser Zwischen River between the Grand Duchy of Stollen and its bitter enemy the Electorate of Zichenau.
Stollenian jaegers along the frontier have sighted occasional small detachments of Zichenauer cavalry on the far side of the River Elbow during the last several days.  As of yet, it has been impossible for Stollenian officers determine the exact size or composition of General Phillipe de Latte's army based on these early reports, and no enemy troops have crossed the river into the Grand Duchy of Stollen as far as advance scouts can tell.  

However, agents operating within Hissig, the Zichenauer capital, have supplied the Stollenian War Ministry with a key piece of information.  The evil and conniving Princess Antonia III has, apparently, cautioned General de Latte that there will be no further adventures in the boudoir until he has marched his forces into Krankenstadt with bands paying and banners flying.  

De Latte, according to Antoni…

Warclouds Gather on the Stollenian Horizon. . .

The planned Summer Residenz, which is taking shape -- at a snail's pace -- one hour north of Krankenstadt.
According to Stollenian agents along the frontier, the Zichenauer Army, under General Phllipe de Latte, is gathering just across the border from the Grand Duchy of Stollen.  Naturally, word has reached the Grand Duke Irwin-Amadeus II and his ministers in Krankenstadt, but the Grand Duke has bigger fish to fry at the moment.  Let's eavesdrop on yet another snippet of conversation between him and his long-suffering English manservant Hives late one morning in the Grand Duke's music room.


Irwin-Amadeus II (still in his dressing gown fanning himself) -- Ah, Hives!  There you are.  Let's have some of that sugary iced tea with mint for which you are so famous.  It's dashed hot in here.

Hives (sets tray on handy table, pours tall glass of tea over ice, hands it to his charge) -- The windows and drapes are all open, Sir, to permit some slight air circulation.  It is rath…

SYW Scenarios Anyone???

The Courier from March-April 1983, Vol. IV, No. 5, which contained an interesting article on SYW scenarios.
While I've already decided on a scenario for my upcoming solo battle when the Grand Duchess and Young Master depart in early August, I've been pondering an article from long ago that appeared in an issue of The Courier that once graced my stack of hobby-related literature.  The article in question dealt with six or seven tabletop scenarios that featured tactical issues and tasks commonly faced by generals during the Seven Years War period.  

Sadly and foolishly, I got rid of (in other words, threw away. . .  threw away!!??) a huge bunch of old wargaming magazines -- mostly old Miniature Wargames and Military Modelling from the early 1980s along with a few odd issues of The Courier -- about 15 years ago when I finished one program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Madison and left town to continue in another at the University of Minnesota with an interim year in Norway…

Daydreaming Ahead. . .

An illustration of infantry from one of the many Saxon duchies, from the Vinkhuijzen Collection of Military Costume Illustrationcollection.
Daydreaming ahead here lately.  Putting the car before the horse.  Avoidance.  Delaying real focus on other things.  As one does.  One of the wargaming hobby's occupational hazards.  Besides unwittingly plunging a hobby knife into the back of your hand during the latest attempt at figure conversion.

At any rate, I've been thinking about what to do with those two 60-figure batches of RSM95 Prussian musketeers when other things standing before them in the painting queue have been finished.  Then, it hit me a few days ago.  A simple idea really.  So, why didn't it occur to me sooner?  Ah, but it did, you see.  Paint a variegated unit made up of smaller contingents from various territories, an idea I nattered on about in a blog post way back in late August of 2006, entitled Pondering into the Wee Hours.  So, I did a bit of digging and uncove…

Let's get serious here!

Ok, the translation is done and the resulting document has been bounced back to the publisher.  Time to switch gears and get back to some toy soldiering.  Basecoating and painting this evening on some Minden and Fife&Drum miniatures.  No more excuses.  Unstructured time and summer vacation are a waistin'.  Chaaaaarrrgggeee!

Making the Paint and Liquin Flow Again. . .

Two companies of Minden and RSM95 Croats, painted during the summer of 2012.
By looking back over a few photos of my own figures from the last couple of years.  


Another shot of the same two units along with their officers and unofficial guidon (painted completely by hand).  These pictures were taken on a Saturday morning in late July last year, and, believe it or not, the sun actually managed, somehow, to peek through some of the windows here in Zum Stollenkeller, really brightening up the scene. I've got enough of these left to paint up a third company in yet another (historic) uniform eventually.  Perhaps late next winter or in the spring of 2014?

Here's  a slightly earlier shot, taken a few nights prior, before all of the scenic ground work was finished.  My basing scheme was inspired by equal parts Peter Gilder and Jim "Der Alte Fritz" Perky.  And speaking of Jim, were I to tread the slippery slop that is his delightful Fife&Drum range at an even faster rate, …

Command Vignettes Phase II. . .

More Minden Prussians, Austrians, Fife & Drum, and RSM95 officers along with a couple of large French 4pdrs also by Fife & Drum.
Alrighty then.  Time to overcome the summertime, post-vacation lethargy and get my you-know-what back to the painting desk this evening for two hours, following supper and the Young Master's bedtime.  On tap for the planned painting session, a basecoat of white artists' acrylic gesso for the Fife & Drum cannon in the forefront and a start on detailing the Prussian cuirassier and dragoon officers at the far left of the photograph.  

Once these have been completed, during the next several days I hope, I'll begin working methodically through the vignettes of Prussian and AWI officers in the middle row before moving on to the Austrians and blacksmith vignette in the rear row.  I've decided to paint at least some of the Austrians as Polish-Saxon officers in red or crimson, you know, just to keep things interesting and moving forward.  Th…

Much Afoot at Fife and Drum. . .

Back to the Grand Duchy after a lengthy absence in the name of family vacation.  A good time was had by all, but it was extremely nice -- after navigating three airports, two flights, along with United States Immigrations and Customs officials plus a lengthy drive home from Chicago's O'Hare International mind you -- to walk through one's own front door and close it once the suitcases were unloaded.

So.  Not much going on here at the moment just yet, although I plan to dive back into command vignettes shortly, and maybe even stage a solo game at the start of August.  However, there have recently been lots of neat developments over at Fife and Drum Miniatures, where new Prussian artillery equipment, limbers, wagons, and horse teams have emerged for sale.  Prices are competitive too, and the sculpting/casting is top notch.  But see for yourselves by visiting Fife and Drum Miniatures or the Hesse-Seewald blog, where proprietor Jim Purky has posted new photographs with more sche…