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Monday, May 29, 2017

DBA Marian Romans and Spanish Auxillaries

The new army lists in DBA give the Marian Romans a little extra variety, so I decided to add some of the Spanish, and Numidian allies.  I assume the elephant was probably supposed to be from Numidia, but I have chosen a hang over from the Carthaginians, and in any event thought it would look best as an element in Scipio's army.

VVV decals were used to decorate the beast.  One of Scipio's Iberian allies guards the elephant on foot.

On the other side of the elephant, a warrior in captured Roman armor guards the elephant from the attack of lightly armed psiloi.

Iberian heavy cavalry - ineffective but pretty.

Here's what started this whole project.  I found some Roman Bolt Throwers in my collection of unpainted lead from Testudo miniatures, and couldn't resist getting them into action.  In their first outing versus an Indian army, they proved devastating to the enemies elephants.

Numidian allied light horse - the most feared horsemen on the battlefield.

Spanish light infantry auxiliaries.

And the heavies - really had fun with the shields!

The largish Xyston figures mix quite nicely with the Testudo Romans - next up, the Gallic mercenaries of Caesar.

Der Kriegspielers Russian Jagers and Artillery

Let's just say that as a former professional photographer, I still haven't learned how to take decent pictures of these glossy little fellas!  I'll keep working on it, but for now just know they are a lot better looking on the tabletop.  Here we have the 3rd Russian Jagers.  I have decided to model the 3rd Corp of the Russian first army, primarily due to the presence of the Pavlov Grenadiers.  Not to mention that eventually I'll get to paint the guard cossacks...

The infamous Russian artillery.  The Unicorn is actually plastic, but I have some stand ins from Newline Designs on the way.

The soldier with the barrel swab thought he was being rude, so turned around to not have his backside facing the camera.

Progress on the Russian army thus far.  I have three other infantry battalions mounted that will require minimal brush work to make serviceable, though I will need to replace the flags.

The view from the ground....

and from the observation balloon.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Old School Napoleonics - Der Kriegspielers and Hinton Hunt

At the Siege of Augusta convention I was fortunate enough to find a large lot of Der Kriegspielers miniatures for sale at a bargain price.  They were adequately painted so I am endeavoring to touch them up as best I can without doing a complete repaint, to get them ready for the table top.

First up is the 1st squadron of the 2nd regiment of French Cuirassiers.  Thanks to Matt in New Zealand for the additional cavalry to complete the regiment.

The standard bearer in the middle is a converted officer but I am unsure of the make.  He is similar in style and size to the Der Kriegspiers / Hinton Hunt figures, but the base is enormous, being almost a full 1/8th of an inch think.  Anyone know what manufacturer he might be from?

Here we have a foot artillery battery, with what appears to be a Russian gunner wearing a French shako.  The gun itself is plastic, so I have added a few details to the stand to try and distract from the simplicity of the gun carriage.

The crate is a 20mm scenic detail from the WWII FAA line, but looked universal enough to fit in.

The water bucket is a filed down 28mm French Shako and the sponge is an old lance with the sponge sculpted from epoxy putty, as well as a couple of epoxy putty round shot.

No Russian army would be complete without the Pavlov Grenadiers.  This is the first battalion and I will model the third battalion down the road, but it may require a complete repaint so is likely to be some time before joining the fray.

Have to love the red mitre bags!

The Standard bearer is a converted Musketeer which has been decapitated and then had a grenadier head added.  The cast on flags are so large and heavy for the Russians, that I decided it would be best to replace the staff with a wire spear and make a paper flag.  Thanks to the folks at Warflag for making the downloadable flags!  I just print them in black and white and paint over them.  Makes a really nice template for painting the flags.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

WWII 105mm German howitzer emplacement - Bolt Action

This is the German 105mm Howitzer set with a few additional pieces for the sandbag bunker and storage by Baueda.

I entered this set in the painting contest for the historical category at the Siege of August this past January.  I was sure that if I won anything it would be with the limber in my previous post, but surprisingly, this set won a first place prize and the siege bucks given as a prize were quickly spent on some Testudo 28mm knights for a battle of Tannenberg (Grunwald) project. Had a great time at Siege by the way so come visit Augusta Georgia if you can next January!

Lots of nice accessories are included in the Bolt Action set - everything but instructions.  I searched their site high and low but there were no instructions to be found for this piece, though I found instructions for about everything else they make.  Hopefully I got it put together correctly!


New small diorama elements for DBN in 28mm and 15mm camp with limbered horse gun

I actually created this piece to serve as a camp element for the Napoleonic variant based on DBA (De Bellis Antiquitatis), called DBN.  If memory serves it is modeled on an elite horse artillery limber, very similar to the Old Guard, but without the white pompoms.  There was some disagreement in my sources as to what the uniforms looked like, so I tried to make my best guess.  I hope you purists out there will be forgiving of my interpretation.

For the small diorama bases I use a Litko 3mm base and add a piece of insulation foam that I then carve to shape hills, roads, gulleys etc.

There are so many good scenic products out there these days.  I believe the tufts of grass and flowers were supplied by Leadbear's Tufts out of Australia (

Here we have a series of 28mm Cavalry for my slowly growing 28mm armies for DBN.  First I have the renowned British 15th Hussars.  I had a ton of conflicting sources as to the design of the saddle cloth.  Eventually I went with Haythornthwaite's uniforms of the Peninsular war.

You really have to wonder how they kept those tall busbys from falling off at a full gallop!

These are some old school Garrison figures that I picked up as part of a larger 20mm Der Kriegspeler's find.  I figured I might as well spruce them up and use them, so cut off the cast lances, cleaned up the paint and added some highlighting.

I really like the little gulley in the center of this small diorama base.

When seen from behind this base really comes alive as the rider on the right looks like he is leaning in to catch up with his fellow lancers.

Lastly I have three regiments of French dragoons in post 1812 uniforms

These are foundry figures, I believe sculpted by the Perry brothers, but they are considerably smaller than the current Perry plastics.

You have to love that some designer somewhere said - "Hey, you know what will really make our dragoons look fierce - yellow and pink facings!  Yep, that will definitely strike fear into the hearts of our enemies."

Love the horse on the right side with both back feet off the ground.  Don't know if horses actually do that, but it looks cool.

I don't often model guidon bearers for my cavalry elements, but this one just looked too cool!

1812 uniform with a pre-1812 flag - I imagine it was possible for a while, at least I hope so.

Vive le Empereur they shout as they prepare to ride down Richard Sharpe and his tiny band of green coated ruffians...

Sunday, February 26, 2017

1806 Prussian and French Napoleonic Slug Fest

The crossroads of Brentwaldstadt were abandoned as two great armies approached to decide the fate of the once mighty Prussian state.  Frederick the Great was long gone and at the head of Prussia's armies was the elderly General Hohenlohe von Crenshaw.  While the Prussian army was larger, the out dated command structure and musket drills shackled the Prussian forces.  Nonetheless the Prussians moved aggressively into battle, seeking a delaying action on their right and a decisive clash on their left.  The main battle line on the left was supported by horse artillery and Colonel Von Blucher, leading his famed Red Hussars, while on the right, light infantry and jagers quickly occupied the woods opposite Brentwaldstadt with Von Beeren's heavy cavalry, the corp artillery, and a Saxon regiment in reserve.

The view from the Prussian left as the main battle lines approach.  The French, with two regiments of elite grenadiers and supporting fusiliers have taken up a strong defensive position on the heights outside of Brentwaldstadt.

The Center - The Prussian and French corp artillery were engaged in fierce counter battery fire for most of the game, only occasionally being able to fire at more vulnerable infantry targets.  Note the Prussian jagers and light infantry moving into the wood to engage the French legere who have taken a defensive posture inside the walls of Brentwaldstadt.

As the lines approach, one regiment of Prussian infantry, suffering heavily from the French guns, was forced to retire behind the main assault.  The horse artillery on the left has already chased one regiment of French Fusiliers from the field, forcing the French to either stand in their defensive position and take a withering fire, or advance on the Prussian lines.

While the struggle continues on the left, the French legere on the right has stormed the Prussian positions in the woods and cleared the Prussian skirmishers, and are now advancing on the Saxons and corp artillery.  Only Von Beeren's heavy Cuirassiers remain as a substantial obstacle to the French advance.

Dire situation on the Prussian right.

Von Beeren leads his cuirassiers forward accompanied by the untested Saxon allies, leaving the shaken Prussian jagers vulnerable to the curved sabers of the French hussars.

The French, unwilling to stand in the face of artillery fire, charge off the hill and engage the Prussians at close range.  In desperation the horse artillery is ordered to defend their position, and though they have initial success with the aid of the Red Hussars charging the flank of the French line, the French squares prove too much and deliver staggering volleys into the glorious Red Hussars, chasing them from the field.  The horse artillery though valiant to the end also succumb to the French charge, but a final crash of Prussian musketry shatters the French line leaving both side exhausted.  It is still very much an undecided contest, but both sides are at the breaking point.

The French gather themselves and despite exhaustion and depleted ammunition stores, storm the Prussian left in a flank attack.  Undeterred the Prussians turn to face the attack, and despite being outnumbered 2 to 1, the Prussians hold, leaving the remaining French regiment and core artillery vulnerable to a counter attack.

Everything is hanging in the balance.  The Prussians have held the French, but their counterattack will be a desperate gamble.  Just as the Prussians are gathering themselves for the final assault, a tremendous explosion rent the air around Brentwaldstadt.  A stray French shell landed in the caissons of the Prussian artillery, with the resultant explosion heard all the way down the road in Auerstadt, ten kilometers away.  Prussian Gunners and horses are ripped apart in a grisly scene from some hellish nightmare.  What is left of the artillery abandons their position, and the Prussian General Hohenlohe von Crenshaw, seeing his artillery flee the field decides his armies position is untenable, and rides out to meet Field Marshal Cliffel and surrender his sword, lest his army is utterly destroyed.

The battle presented here was played using a DBA variant called DBN written by Alex Testo and Bob Carter.  It is available as a download here:
The troops are 15mm miniatures played on a 30" square board.