Saturday, 30 August 2014

A Pair of Albatrii, pt.2

I started these two bloody things over a fortnight ago, I thought it would be a quick job of building them. But boy, was I wrong. The complexity of the small parts proved to be a bit of nightmare and given their small scale it was tougher than I thought it would be. I was hoping to get both finished together, but the second one is still in this state:

I did, however, manage to pull myself together and finish one of them. This one represents an aircraft from Jasta 19 in 1918, flown by the succinctly named Oliver Freiherr von Beaulieu-Marconnay. He scored 25 victories and was the youngest recipient of the Pour-Le-Merite, but on his death bed at age 20. Oliver had been injured ten days previously from friendly fire on October 16 1918.

The verdict? Very nice kits for the highly skilled modeller, but being only moderate myself, I struggled with this. The top wing was a real pain to put on and I eventually left off a lot of the smaller photo-etched parts as they were just too fiddly! Plus I decided not to rig the crate as I had had enough of looking at the bloody thing. Maybe I'll revisit it in the future, but for now it's in the cabinet!

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Stormtroopers Keep A Stormin'

Here is the finished last half of the batch of First World War German soldiers from Early War Miniatures. In total, sixteen more infantry plus an MG 08/15 on a sled. Assembled into two Gruppe this is what they look like:

On the right hand side in this Gruppe you will see the guy with a trench broom, the Bergmann MP18. I only got one of these figures as I thought the MP18 would be a pretty rare site. I will add more as the collection grows though.

And the other Gruppe, this has the usual mix of riflemen and bombers. Again, the poses in these figures are very dynamic and the detail is excellent. They have a real nice feel to them.

And the MG08/15, these were traditionally mounted on frames, but some came mounted on these sleds for ease of movement in the trenches. This is another nicely modelled set, I intend on getting some more of these.

In other news, I was in the Wargames Emporium in Sheffield over the bank holiday and picked up this second hand copy of Napoleon's Wars: The 100 Days. It has good reviews on Board Game Geek and seems to be a Napoleonic version of Memoir '44, which was another game I enjoyed playing. However it plays it was a bargain at only £20!

And finally, my company, Elmet Archaeological Services Ltd. have launched a crowdfunding project to fund an archaeological excavation of a back garden that has produced a lot of Roman pottery. If you are inclined to help us on the way, here is the PROJECT HOMEPAGE. Please have a look, even if you are only interested and share the link! Look at this lovely Roman pottery!!

Many thanks!

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Let the Kaiserschlacht Begin!

Along with the plastic First World War Germans that I bought a while ago, I decided to bolster their number with some metal ones as well. Early War Miniatures have a good range and I like the look of their figures. Coupled with being relatively cheap they are a definite winner for me! The figures have a great range of poses and their rifles aren't bendy either! I ordered about thirty five of them and am painting them in batches. These are the first nine:

I then added a few more to the mix, including some laid on the ground firing, two trench raiders cutting wire and preparing a multiheaded grenade and a Mauser 1918 T-Gewehr Anti-Tank rifle team.

Here's the Mauser 1918 T-Gewehr, with a firer and spotter:

And the two trench raiders. 

I am now basing all my Through the Mud and the Blood figures individually since buying the movement trays from Sally 4th. Here is a typical gruppe together on a tray:

I am toying with the idea of going entirely over the metal in 20mm as these figures are so good compared to the plastic ones I already have. These are the first but by no means last, so I'll post more pictures of the others as they get finished. 

Today is the 100th Anniversary of the Battle of Mons, the first major engagement by the British Expeditionary Force in the First World War. The defence of the of the Nimy bridge against German attacks also marks the awarding of the first two VCs of the war; Lt Dease and Pvt Godley.

*Spoiler* the BEF lose.

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

The Movement of the People

In hindsight from the first game of Through the Mud and the Blood, I thought that my previous figure basing was not adequate for the game. Having two men based together led to confusion and also restricted what we could actually do with them during the game, like splitting down units. So, with this in mind, I set about basing the latest Germans that I bought from Early War Miniatures as individual figures mounted on one pence pieces. However, this presented the problem of moving the figures around on the table. It's laborious moving lots of individual figures, so I started looking around for movement trays and found that Sally 4th made several types in MDF, including ones that fitted one pence pieces perfectly. They were also in an irregular pattern, perfect for my needs and came with any number of precut holes. I settled on eight as this was the average size of a section in TtMatB, ordered some and they promptly arrived!

Saturday, 16 August 2014

A Pair of Albatrii WIP pt. 1

There has been a couple of requests for the wallpaper designs that Ninjasaurus Rex created for the Stalingrad buildings that he and I recently made. Here is the .jpg of them. Right click on the picture click on 'view picture' and save it to your computer (this works for PCs, I'm not sure how Macs work...), then print out as many as you need. I found the best way to do this was to paste the picture into a word document and stretch it to fill the page, ignoring the printing warning about it being beyond the edge for printing. Print as many as you need and bob's your uncle!

Last Christmas I got a gift certificate for Amazon, I spent it on what I thought was a 1/48th Scale Albatros, by Eduard. It turns out it was duo set of models but were 1/72nd scale and when I asked for a return, the supplier (who I will not name as I don't want to give them any publicity) told me that I would have to pay the postage to return the models and they would only refund me the price of the models and not the original postage! So, I figured, I'll keep them, rather than pay postage twice for nothing. 

They have sat in the lead mountain for a while, until this week when I thought I'd sit down and make them. As with all Eduard models they are incredibly detailed, even at this small scale. The cockpits are full of photo etched parts:

I made the interiors and took some photos, just to prove to myself that I actually put all the tiny parts in there...

I stuck the fuselage halves together, added the bottom wings and tailplanes, then I turned my attention to the machine guns. These were also photo-etched, the barrels of the plastic ones had to be removed to be fitted with the metal parts. These were fiddly but not too bad in the end.

Then these were placed in their positions, unfortunately, I had cack-handedly put the engine blocks in slightly the wrong place and the guns sunk down a little too far into the fuselage. Oh well, under the top wing it shouldn't be too noticeable...

That is as far as I have got with these for now, I was hoping to have them finished by the weekend, but they have proved to be quite fiddly in their construction. Check back for further updates...

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Berlin Strasse WIP Pt. 4

Doesn't time fly when you're modelling a wrecked building? Welcome to part four of this seemingly never ending build.

Saturday, 9 August 2014

More Birthday Bonanzas!

The presents from my birthday the other week keep rolling in. With some birthday money I bought myself From Boer War to World War by Spencer Jones, The British Trench Warfare 1917-18, the board game Tsuro and Axis Allies WW1 1914. I haven't had a chance to play WW1 yet (or properly read the books...), but I have always liked the A&A series of games, or at least, the ones I have played! We played Tsuro last week after our introductory game of Through the Mud and the Blood and it is a great little game that is quick and easy to pick up and most importanly fun to play.

Then my brother's presents came through the post, two DVDs, the extremely good Russian film Come and See and a German film I was unaware of Lore. These were also accompanied by The Long Shadow by David Reynolds.

So even more war related items. I'm not complaining, although I am not sure when I will get a chance to sit down and read and watch them!

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

SS 143, Instructions for the Training of Platoons for Offensive Action

With Sunday being the centenary of Germany declaring war on France we decided to play our first game of Through the Mud and the Blood. I have been putting together this project for a while now with 20mm mostly plastic figures and it was time to test the rules. The game was based on the first scenario from the Stout Heart and Iron Troopers supplement, which deals with a British infantry platoon attack on a entrenched German position. In the original scenario the Germans had two sections and a machine gun. However, I don't have a painted machine gun, so I supplemented the force with a third section.

Monday, 4 August 2014

Britain at War

100 Years ago, Britain declared war on Germany for the violation of neutral Belgium. This was played up as a humanitarian crusade, but the loss of the channel ports to a belligerent foreign power was a direct threat to British national security.

The British government made the decision at 11:00pm GMT on the 4th August and the country woke up to read the news on the 5th.

Saturday, 2 August 2014

Berlin Strasse WIP Pt. 3

Welcome back to part three of this ongoing build, you can find part one HERE and part two HERE. Ninjasaurus Rex has published an incredibly comprehensive blog post on how he made the building he gave me as a present, you can find this HERE.

I noticed that he and I have done things differently in our approaches to these buildings, but, after a discussion with him about how he made the rubble in the bottom of his building, I followed his example.