05 November 2017

Slow Tinkering with Flags and Flag Bearers. . .

  Standards apparently carried by the Baden-Durlach Regiment  during the mid-18th century (courtesy of Kronoskaf).

Nothing to show quite yet, but the Young Master and I spent a delightful couple of hours tinkering with our respective projects (soldiers for father and tinker toys for son) here in Zum Stollenkeller yesterday (Saturday) afternoon.  The two cats ping-ponged between us purring, vying for, and enjoying attention from the both of us enjoying the experience thoroughly based on the feline gazes and playful behavior.  

I can say that I finally got around to attaching and styling the various LARGE paper flags to those Minden replacement Prussian and Austrian standard bearers that I've been fooling with painfully s-l-o-w-l-y since last winter.  They're going to look really good once finished if you'll pardon the blatant self-promotion.  

There are, of course, many different and effective ways "to do" flags out there, but I've really gotten the hang of making pretty convincing representations using plain old white printer paper,  a thin coating of PVA white glue like Elmer's, and then a bit of patience and care to finesse the limp paper into various furls and folds as the glue dries.  I typically follow by painting carefully over the computer printer inks to prevent later fading and make the flags match my own figure painting style more closely.  A wargamerly paint by numbers if you will.  It's tedious at times, but when the stars align, the results are pretty darn good.

You can put a slightly smaller piece of aluminum foil between the two halves of your flags to help maintain the desired furls and folds as your glue dries, and I have done so in the past.  When this particular method works, it really works well and results in very realistic looking flags.  But, it means an added layer of glue and another layer of material all of which must be aligned without getting any glue on your fingertips as you work to get everything just so before your glue dries.  As the song goes, it don't come easy.

This time, in the interest of speed and relative ease, I skipped the foil layer step. However, the various now dried-into-place flags still seem to look pretty good on inspection this morning.  They have indeed maintained their painstakingly applied furls and folds, so that part of the process is finished.

One final flag tip.  If you furl your flags just right, you can hide at least some of the complex and busy devices and coats of arms at the center, which speeds the later painting process immeasurably.

But I am getting ahead of myself just a bit.  Some touching up on the figures themselves first, then careful painting over the computer printer ink colors, some clear varnish, and the new figures will at last be able to assume their place with existing line infantry regiments before too much longer.  They are due to take over from their rather squat MiniFig predecessors, who have done yeoman's work until now.  It will then be time to add some additional standard and guidon bearers to my existing cavalry units since I would like each squadron to include one.

-- Stokes

 The Grand Duke and the Young Master at just eight and almost 51 respectively.  We spent late Saturday morning working on models of engine valves and pistons with one of the books Paul received for his recent eighth birthday.  He has lately expressed an interest in how engines function, and this is an area I know nothing about (beyond checking and adding the occasional quart oil and filling the gas tank as needed), so these joint projects provide interesting education for both of us.


Fitz-Badger said...

Seems it's the season to tinker. :)

warpaintjj said...

Engines remain a source of mystery to me too, possibly Black Magic at work?
My three daughters & I are in blissful ignorance!
Best wishes,


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