Friday, 20 April 2018

Wargaming with Screws

Back in August 1969 I bought my first Wargame Magazine - Miniature Warfare - for the princely sum of 3/6. 

At the time 20mm was the smallest figures you could get. I dont think Peter Laing 15mm when then available.

This did not stop intrepid Wargamers experimenting with smaller scales.

In the magazine was an article on using screws to game with.  What is even more surprising is that they were used individually and not even based multiplly on  stands.

1/4 screws fot infantry is very close to 6mm.

I wonder if anyone actually tried this at the time. 

Thursday, 12 April 2018

From the Archives and a small competition

I have been delving through my old Miniature Warfare magazines and found a few more interesting classic photos.

Firstly a nicely posed scene with Napoleon watching Marshal Ney leading his troops on the way Waterloo. No doubt his is still muttering under his breath someting about the reserves he had been promised at Quartre Bras. I rather like this.

Some Prussian Artillery manning what looms like a Hinchcliffe French 12lb artillery piece. 

Two pictures of a large game between French and Swedes. The French are Hintons. The Swedes are harder to make out.

I used to have one if these cardboard Elizabethan houses in the 70s. I know you can still get them but they were a challenge to build then and I am sure they will be just as difficult if I tried building one today.

The figures look to be Hinton Young Guard. Although the standard bearer is a converted Airfix ACW figure.

And finally the competition.

I have a spare recast Alberken Murat figure as a free prize.


I was recently in London and I visited a location of one of my favourite hobby shops in the late 60s/early 70s. This is what the shop looks like today.

So all you have to do is guess the name of the shop and send me an email. Which can be found in my blogger details 

The competition closes at 18:00 on Sunday 15th. If there is more than one successful entry I will draw a winner.

Sunday, 1 April 2018

The 'Monster' himself

I have dipped and cleaned up the  next batch of figures ready for the painting table.

First up a vintage Napoleon.  When I was a callow youth I had a Minifig S Range Napoleon and I am looking forward to painting him.

Next to him is a rather flamboyant Alberken recast of Murat. He will need a suitably exotic uniform to bring him to life.

I have also got some Old Guard gunners ready to go.  Three are Alberken figures with the remaining ones are Hintons which I bought from Camden Passage.

I had to do a bit if repair to the gunner with the hand spike.  It was miscast when I got the figure from Hinton Hunt. I used the plastic brush from an old broom and super glue and pva to effect the repair.  This drys rock solid and far stronger then super glue on its own.

Saturday, 31 March 2018

Lutzow Uhlans

I have almost finished the next batch of figures. They need a second coat of varnish and basing to finish them off.

The Officer and Standard bearer are conversions using a Prussian Dragoon and a bit of Milliput.

Thanks to WM for the image of the flag which I have made from an old coke can.

Tuesday, 20 March 2018

Airfix Thatched Cottage Completed

It has taken some time to paint because of all the wood beams. However today I finished painting my first Airfix cottage since the early 70s.

I have tried to match the colours from the box lid.

I have another 2 of these kits and country church still to do. 

Saturday, 17 March 2018

Opening Presents and Parcels

Its my birthday today. So this morning I was happy to receive a couple of books as presents which had been bought on ebay.

Both books are in good condition and the Waterloo Companion looks as new.

I am pleased with both books and Prussian army book will come in handy as I have a number of units that are jostling to get on the painting table.

Earlier in the week I had been  chatting with John C and mentioned that I was short of Hinton Hunt French and British Cavalry. John said he would get something sorted and in the post for the weekend.

Last night I got home to find a rather large parcel awaiting for me. Inside there were masses of cavalry, Command figures including much needed French standard bearers and drummers as well as British RHA and Prussian artillery.  

Here are a couple if photos. The first is of French Heavies (Carabinier, Dragoons and then 2 different Cuirassier types)

The second are all French Guard. (Empress Dragoons, Grenadiers a Cheval and Guard Lancers with separate arm).

My Lead pile is now officially a mountain.

Not a bad start to my Birthday Weekend.

Tuesday, 13 March 2018

Classic Napoleonic - Spring Manoeuvres

It was a year ago this month that I started collecting classic Napoleonic wargame figures. During the course of the year I have been renovating, stripping and painting.  The numbers have grown, with the help of the Oxfam haul, to two balanced forces.

As spring is in the air it seems appropriate a hold my first annual review not only to record progress made but also ti act as a record for next years Spring manoeuvres.

Most of the figures are original HIntons with some Alberken/Minifigs. The French gunners are 25mm Minifigs.

The French have 96 foot and 7 mounted figures.

The Anglo,Austrian, Prussian and Portuguese have 108 foot and 8 Mounted figures.

In all I have collected 204 foot and 15 mounted figures plus numerous artillery pieces.  The next few months will see more Cavalry and French Guard Artillery and perhaps some more mounted commanders to swell the ranks.

Wednesday, 7 March 2018

More Lutzowers

Next up on my painting is the second squadron of the Lutzow Uhlans. As I had 4 Lancers I was going to need 2 extra figures to bring the unit up to strength.

I decided to try my hand at a bit of conversion work to create an officer and standard bearer for my Uhlans. I know the Prussian Uhlans did not carry standards but I decided that they would look the business if mine they did.

I started out using a JC recast Prussian Dragoon. The first step was to use the Dremel  I got for Christmas to remove the Carbine.

Next steps was to use Milliput to add the Litweka. This is the first time I have tried using Milliput to convert a figure.  The Uhlan figures have a different shaped shako so I added a bit of Milliput here as well. I added a few other bits and pieces.

I cut of the sword of one of the Dragoon and added a flagpole using a needle I 'borrowed' from the wife's sewing kit. I have fashioned a hand which hopefully will look alright when painted.

The finished figures together with an Uhlan.

As I had a bit of Milliput left over I tried something else out. As part of a recent trade with TS I got some Der Kreigspieler Lutzow Infantry. The only issue is they are bit on the small size. I however noticed the base was a bit thin.

So I added a bit of Miliput under the base to add a little extra height.  The difference is less noticeable and I could probably get away with using a slightly thicker piece of Milliput.

One of the advantages is that you can get a tidy finish and once the Milliput is filed smooth and the painted and based it will hard to tell they are wearing platform boots.

I am happy how my first attempts with Milliput have come out and I will certainly try more conversions in the future.

Friday, 2 March 2018

Flanqueurs-chasseurs of the Garde Impériale

In September 1811 Napoleon created a two battalion regiment of Chasseur Flankers of the Young Guard. They fought in the Campaigns of 1812 to 1814.  They look rather nice in Green

I am thinking that a batch of Alberken/Minfigs I have will be rather splendid as Chasseur Flankers.

Do I paint these next or do some more Prussian Lancers and French Hussars. I also have a Napoleon, Wellington (both original Hintons) and a JC recast Blucher in the queue along with 3 battalions of Prussian Infantry, 3 battalions of French, 2 battalions of British plus some riflemen. I also have 1 1/2 Austrian units as well as some French Guard and Guard Horse Artillery.

These are a mixture Hintons, Alberken/Minifig, Der Kreigspielers, Rose and Les Higgins

Decisions decisions - so what do I paint next ?

Sunday, 25 February 2018

5th Regiment De Ligne

I have finally finished my 5th Regiment de Ligne 3 weeks later than planned.

This unit is made up using Alberken/Minfig 20mm figures.

The 5th was originally the Navarre Regiment in the old Royal Army and I choose this unit for its role in the 100 days campaign and the scene in the film Waterloo.

The elite companies are a rather nice figure. The previous owner had chopped the plume down to make a pom pom.

Inspired by WM flags I had a go at a making a flag using an old Coke can. I found it easy to cut using a pair of scissors and the metal is thin enough to bend an fold without any problems. Painting is not too difficult although I had to do embroidery twice after my first attempt ended up with the letters too large.

The 5th Regiment only had one battle honour - Wagram. This made it a easier to paint this side of the flag. 

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

French Elite Infantry - Progress

I have been making slow progress on the elite companies for the 5th Regiment. I have got to the point where I am the white bits (cross belts,straps and piping).  Its at this point I feel that I am finally getting somewhere at the end is in sight. 

For this unit I am also doing a coke can flag.  I have the basic colours added.  The next part will adding the embroidered details. This may take some time.

I hope this will be completed by the weekend ready for varnishing and basing.

Once this unit is done I will have enough figured done for a small game of Austro/Prussian/British vs French.

I plan to paint some cavalry next.

Wednesday, 24 January 2018

Classic British Napoleonics - comparison

A recent Ebay purchase has added to my British Napoleonic refurb pile. I now have a few figures from a number of the ranges available in the early 70s.

The first image shows figures which I am fairly sure are Alberken/early minifigs.  The codes I believe are left to right:-

BN4 Rifleman Officer
BN3 Rifleman on Guard
BN23 Light Infantry Firing ?
BN22 Light Infantry Advancing ?
BN26 Line Infantryman on guard ?

Update.  I have added a link to Old Metal Detector blog which shows the first 2 figures in an old Alberken boxed set.

The full list can be found here:-

The next image is a comparison of some the classic figures, from different manufacturers, I have awaiting refurb.

Left to right these are:- Hinton Hunt, Minifig, Minifig,  Rose, Les Higgins and Garrison.

The Higgins figures are a bit wooden and The Garrison is taller.

Sunday, 21 January 2018

Airfix Thatched Cottage

The weather is a bit dodgy here today with temperatures at zero with snow flurries.  However this meant that my sons Rugby match in Settle was cancelled. 

I used the time to do some painting on the French 5th Regiment however my painting  mojo was not there.

Before Christmas I had bought some old Airfix kits and I thought why not do a bit of gluing instead of painting.

The kit looks to have been made around  1978 so it is about 40 years old.

The kit was complete and looked nice and easy to do. Just the ticket for a Sunday afternoon. 20 minutes later and it was built.