Wednesday, 28 July 2021

Chain of Command British Rifle Platoon Undercoat

I have now spray undercoated the figures for my Chain of Command British platoon, using a Halfords Ultra Matt Camouflage Brown rattle can, which is what I used on my late war US platoon as a starting point. It's really good stuff and makes a great key for painting a basecoat and then subsequent layers, although it does make them look like they're made of milk chocolate. It also takes surprisingly long to do properly. As you can see, I've added a fourth section as a support option but will paint them up alongside the rest of the infantry figures. 

Never Mind the Billhooks in 15mm?

One of the Facebook groups that I've recently joined is for the Never Mind the Billhooks rules, a free set of War of the Roses large skirmish rules published as a freebie a few months ago in Wargames Illustrated. I got hold of a copy at the time and thought they looked good but wasn't prepared to paint up two whole armies in 28mm to use them with, as this would have been way too much for me to handle. However, I had a thought the other day that it would be an ideal 15mm project, especially as I already have a big box of surplus 15mm Peter Pig figures that I originally got as a birthday present several years ago.

These were supposed to be for Bloody Barons, for which I failed to drum up any interest at the club, then re-purposed for Lion Rampant, until I realised that 28mm was a much better option if single basing figures. So, they could now be re-purposed yet again, this time using multiple basing with some sort of casualty markers used to track the results of combat. I really like the idea of multiple basing, with the rules mainly using 12 man units, as I think it's ideal for 15mm and would look great, as well as being easier to handle. I'll give this some more thought as a potential project for later in the year. It would certainly be a good use for some lovely figures!

Tuesday, 27 July 2021

Bag the Hun Khalkhin Gol Aircraft Sheets

I have been playing around with ideas for simplified and streamlined squadron record sheets for Bag the Hun but, in the meantime, have adapted my existing sheet for the most common two fighter aircraft of the two sides- the Ki-27 and I-16. I can't help thinking that I only need the basic data once and then could have a roster for each pilot with skill level, ammo used and damage sections on a table, rather than have individual sheets for every aircraft, as most scenarios only feature two types in total?

Monday, 26 July 2021

The Bolt Action Boys

Got to dig out these guys first!

As my wife and daughter are away, the boys can now take command of the dining room table for a try out game of the second edition Bolt Action rules. The eldest has now almost finished painting his late war German infantry platoon and I already have about 900 points of late war Americans for the Ardennes, so we'll run a simple meeting engagement scenario soon, set somewhere in the snow in late 1944. It may be a bit stop and start, as I haven't played Bolt Action in years and he's never played it before, but I'm sure we'll work it out and get there in the end?

Chain of Command British Rifle Platoon Prep

I have made some good progress this afternoon on cleaning up and basing the core platoon for the Chain of Command summer project. As you can see this consists of three rifle sections including a Bren gun team and a Junior Leader each, together with the platoon HQ of a 2'' mortar and PIAT team, a platoon sergeant Senior Leader and a lieutenant Senior Leader. I also added a support unit in the form of a platoon medic, using a Warlord Games figure with a Crusader Miniatures head attached, so that it blended in better with the other figures. The Crusader figures have virtually no flash or seams to remove and are really nice models, so I am going to add a fourth rifle section as a support unit in the initial painting plan while the rest of the support units will wait until the second phase.

Sunday, 25 July 2021

Cutting Lead for Chain of Command

It's the first weekend of my summer holidays so what better time than now to start on my 2021 summer project, a late war British platoon for Chain of Command, with the first lead being sanded and scraped away on some nice Crusader Miniatures figures. I've been meaning to get on with this project for ages, so now seems like an ideal opportunity, as I won't be going abroad this year due to Covid-19, with three weeks free for uninterrupted wargaming. 


I am quite busy, however, as with the wife and daughter away I have to look after the boys, taking one twice a week up to London for rugby training and the other up to Fort William for a two week conservation project, which is only a ten hour drive in both directions! Nonetheless, I will have some quiet time in between to get the platoon and support units painted up, which means it should be finished by the end of August if it all goes according to plan?

Cyclops Class Breastwork Monitors

One of the things that I haven't as yet added to my Royal Navy Victorian ironclad fleet are the four Cyclops class breastwork monitors. I didn't bother with these as they were a bit of a dead end as a class, being relegated to coastal and harbour defence duties soon after commissioning, although a couple were attached to the Particular Service Squadron in the late 1870's. There didn't seem much point in painting any of them up, until I thought of using them as originally intended, which was to operate in shallow inshore waters in an offensive role. 

Although they were designed for use in the Baltic against a potential Russian naval threat, I will instead use them against the French in my 'What If?' war of the mid 1870's, this time to launch attacks into the estuaries along the Western coastline to sink enemy shipping and bombard fortifications. I have ordered a couple of ASV40 packs, each containing two models, so will able to deploy HMS Cyclops, HMS Hecate, HMS Hydra and HMS Gorgon as a shallow draft, ironclad strike force!

Saturday, 24 July 2021

Broadside and Ram Scenario Plan

I haven't played a game with my 1/2400th scale ironclads for ages, so have put some thought into devising a new scenario for my fictitious war between the French and British Empires in the early to mid 1870's. I wondered about an amphibious landing operation but have switched to a scenario based on the Battle of Basque Roads in 1809, in which an anchored French fleet was severely disrupted by a Royal Navy inshore squadron under command of Lord Cochrane. 

HMS Glatton

In my 'What If? version, set in the mid-1870's, the French fleet will set up in a similar defensive position, behind a log and chain boom. It will be attacked at night by a Royal Navy flotilla of shallow draft Cyclops class breastwork monitors, towed into place by ironclad warships, then used in a flanking manoeuvre across the shallows. There will also be an ironclad ram, probably HMS Hotspur, that can be used to breach the boom in front of the French anchorage allowing some of the larger ironclads to steam through and blast away at the anchored French fleet.

HMS Hotspur

IN addition to a well armed shore fort, the French will also get to deploy a field of tethered 'torpedoes' that can be electrically detonated from on land. I have yet to hammer out the details for Broadside and Ram but I think it will be an unusual and interesting change. I'll need to work out new rules for breaching the boom and for the mine fields, but this shouldn't be too difficult to do. As a result, I'm going to make this scenario a possible option for INWarD in a couple of weeks time.

Chilean Air Force F-16's

I finished these this morning for Naval Command, giving my Chilean naval forces some very useful air support and land based maritime strike capability. As usual, they look better at arms length and without the flash, but you'll have to take my word for it! I can also use them against my existing Peruvian Air Force Mirage 2000's and Su-22's in Target Locked On games, so it's a good addition to the 1/600th scale South American set up.

Friday, 23 July 2021

1/600th Chilean F-16's for Naval Command

While I still have what's left of my 1/600th scale painting mojo, I thought I'd paint up four Tumbling Dice F-16's for my Chilean naval forces. The Chilean Air Force has F-16's that can be loaded out with AGM-84 Harpoon anti-shipping missiles. although they don't actually have any. They can also carry a wide array of other munitions for anti-shipping attacks. I've found a really colourful low-vis camouflage scheme for them, so will get cracking today and aim to finish them off for use in up and coming scenarios.


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