The Big Blow

Our only damage from the weather bomb that swept up the country today. Free firewood indeed.

jaspersdoggyworld

Honey from Farmer Van Honey from Farmer Van

Greeting loyal readers and fellow maremmas.  Now as you all know it is supposed to be summer here in sunny New Zealand, therefore, hot, sunny and warm.  But for some reason this summer seems to have other ideas.  Today a weather bomb passed over the country with 154 km (95 miles) winds blowing through Wellington.  Accompanied by torrential rain. It certainly was windy here and this morning when mummy went out to feed those pesky chicken she saw a big branch blown off a tree in the paddock.

Daddy looking at the branch.  Daddy looking at the branch.

img_7432img_7433So sometime this week, daddy with the assistance from Farmer Rae will be cutting down the branch.  Yeah more free fire wood.

Off We go.  We have heard mention of visitors coming this weekend. As loyal readers know Me and Nellie love having guests to stay.  More people to give Us the love…

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A review of 2016 in the Woolshed (July to December)

Continuing my review of 2016 in my corner of the wargaming world.

JULY

I got a present from overseas – an autographed copy of the first new module for Space Opera to come out in a few decades – another great Star Sector Atlas (The Galactic People’s Republic).  If you have not seen it I did a review.

The first miniatures of the month were a regiment of Perry plastic cuirassiers. I painted these as Spanish Coraceros. This unit had maybe a troop uniformed in captured French cuirasses and helmets. I did a whole unit.  I also did a unit of Front Rank Catalonian Light Infantry. These guys came out particularly well despite the lace driving me somewhat batty.

Then, as is my want, I went off on a hobby tangent. I unpacked a box full of old GW orcs – some that I had started painting with my son over ten years ago and a whole bunch of second hand ones I had brought at the time. This consumed my hobby time for the next few months for the most part. I decided to base and use  them for Kings of War.  The first unit was some Boar Boyz that I had pretty much done back in the early to mid-2000s.

AUGUST or perhaps ORCGUST would be more appropriate.

Everything this month was Orcy. An Orc general on a boar, lots and lots of GW Orcs based into Regiment bases. I really wanted to show that Black Orcs Matter – even old ones.

Ancillary units were not neglected. I did a Regiment of Trolls, two Hordes of Orclings and a Regiment of Orc Chariots.

Finished off the month with another unit of Savage Orc Boar/Gore riders and used a spare Grimgor and a chariot to make a Krudger mounted in Chariot.

SEPTEMBER

More Orcs. I got some heroes finished (a flagger, a krudger and a godspeaker) and finally painted my Frothers Unite-UK! miniature of Big Dave the Orc.   The Orcs were rounded off with a final Regiment of Orc Boyz (or Ax Regiment in KoW) and I also converted a Papo toy orc into an Orc Giant – Big Fecking Dave.

September was also saw the arrival of a few future additions to our freezer.

OCTOBER

This was a quiet month hobby-wise. I didn’t do any miniatures but did do some other bits and pieces. I made a bunch of buildings in the style of the Conflix buildings so popular with gamers around the world.  I also made a half-hearted start on turning my GW Bretonnians into a Kings of War army – exactly what one I am not totally sure yet. Check out the Bretonnian Standard Bearer and a unit of mounted Yoemen.

One of my other passions is food. I have been trying out some new recipes this year. Here are two of my favourites. Pork a la Normand and Walnut and Blue Cheese Ravioli.

Finished of the month with another starship deck plan. This was one inspired by the great Scifi TV show The Expanse. I did a freighter suitable for a PC group.

expanser-freighter-detail

NOVEMBER

This was the month that we got All Shook Up. New Zealand lived up to it’s reputation for the odd little earth tremor. On November 13th just after midnight we got hit by a 7.5 and a bunch of big aftershocks. A lot of damage but only a few casualties directly related to the quake. We came away with a few things fallen off shelves and about three days later discovered we had a broken water pipe. Being a resourceful country lad I fixed it myself.

I only got one “unit” finished this month. Painted up some Elite Miniatures Spanish as a battalion of Spanish Marine Infantry. Something a little different.

DECEMBER

Added two more Spanish units for my Spanish Peninsular Army. A unit of Spanish Light infantry in blue coats and bicornes and also a battalion of Spanish Militia.

Any my lucky last unit of the year was a unit that I am not sure was ever constituted much beyond the planning stages – The Regiment Elisa Napoleon. I made it from Perry plastic French line and Carabineer heads left over from my “Spanish” Cuirassiers (and some from TMPer Virtualscratchbuilder).

This past year I also did a number of product reviews and hopefully will be able to do more in 2017.

Flat Minis (plastic flats for RPG gaming)  – http://www.flatminis.com

Deep Cut Studios (Mousepad style battle mats): http://www.deepcutstudio.com/

FGU Space Opera RPG (Star Atlas 4): http://drivethrurpg.com/product/169635/Space-Opera-Star-Sector-Atlas-4-The-Galactic-Peoples-Republic

Well, that was the hobby year (and a few other things) for me. All in all it was not too bad. What is in store this coming year – well, more Napoleonics of course. I have stacks of metal still sitting there waiting.

War of 1812 Americans and British also need completing.  Not to mention the Kings of War Orcs, the toy ship conversions for Pirates and the old Traveller figures.  Kings of War Brets and even a horde of Japanese that I think would make a good KoW Kingdom of Men army are on the cards. Of course, all this will probably be out the window and I will start doing ACW or something.

A review of 2016 in the Woolshed (January to June)

Well 2016 has come and gone. A few dead celebrities in the tail end of the year and everyone and sundry talking about the worst year ever. Guess things like  1347-50 or 1939-45 just don’t stack up. For me it has been a pretty good year. Been surprisingly happy and life has been, for the most part, pretty good.  We had no floods or other rural drama. The biggest thing to hit us was the 7.5 quake back in November, and apart from a busted water pipe and a few things off shelves we were sweet.

Blogwise it has been a very good year. Doubled my page views and almost doubled readers. I have made a bunch of ‘net friends’ through here that I would not have otherwise met or known. They gave me lots of encouragement and I thank you guys for your input.

So, how did 2016 pan out?

JANUARY

Started out doing some repairs on the Woolshed and building myself a new work bench. Miraculously, it is still standing and in one piece. If you are surprised at that then that makes two of us.

I spent most of  January drawing deckplans for Traveller and other Scifi games. Had fun with some Reddit competitions run by the Traveller subreddit. I didn’t win but thought my ship was pretty cool nonetheless.

FEBRUARY

February was a Zulu Wars month with work on Casualty bases and an actual game – the Battle of Van Lunteran’s Farm.

MARCH

March saw even more Zulu Wars activity as both the Zulus and Imperials got reinforcements. The Imperial forces were reinforced by some converted Perry Plastic ACW cavalry becoming British Volunteer and Auxiliary cavalry.  These were my first plastic conversions of any note.  Also some nice Empress dismounted versions to go with them.

The Impi was bolstered by two new regiments. The uThulwana Regiment in full dress and the Evil Omen – the uMbonambi regiment.  Lastly, the Fly Catchers also made it onto the table. All Black Tree Designs miniatures. Just love painting these guys. I cannot believe I did three regiments in one month.

All these new regiments needed some more command figures so also added a few more Zulu command bases.

Also scratch built some British infantry casualty bases and painted some brought casualty figures.

And lastly for March – a decent sized Anglo-Zulu game.  Played with Black Powder Rules and four players new to the rule-set.

APRIL

I finally finished the fourth and last of the Zulu Regiments that formed the Reserve at Isandlwana and who made the attack on Rorke’s Drift. This Regiment was the uDhloko “Savage” regiment.

Then it was time to get back into Napoleonics. The first Napoleonic unit painted in 2016 was this Portuguese Regiment that I started way back in January 2015. I got the bit between my teeth and cranked out three units in a week. Also done were some Portuguese Artillery (Elite Miniatures of course) and some Cacadores.

MAY

May was Peninsular Cavalry Month. A regiment of British Light Dragoons and a Spanish Line Cavalry unit were completed.  Also managed a Spanish Line Battalion – the Cordoba Regiment.

We also managed some non-wargaming related activities. A tramp up our beautiful valley looking at old abandoned homesteads.

JUNE

Two more Spanish Cavalry Regiments. The Maria Luisa Hussars. I made a cock-up with these by reversing the colours of dolmans and pelisses. By the time I realised I had already done half of them so left it as is. Also a lovely regiment of yellow coated Spanish Dragoons.

Two more infantry battalions also marched into the storage cabinets. The first was a battalion of Spanish infantry in British uniform. The Colorados were captured in Beunos Aries, imprisoned on hulks in England and finally wiped out at the battle of Medina del Rioseco.  The second battalion was one I was particularly happy with. The 42nd Black Watch.

Without a doubt though, the highlight of this month was the reception of my first D&D Miniature. I was really happy how it came out and many people suggested that I should enter it in painting competitions. I did this awesome D&D Invisible Stalker.

Part Two (July to December) tomorrow. I really need to go and do some chores.

Regiment Elisa Napoleon

A few months back I saw this picture on my Facebook feed. I immediately thought that was a Wow! unit. Bonaparte’s sister Elisa was Grand Duchess of Tuscany and something-or-another of Lucca and Piombino (Princess I think). She authorised the raising of a bodyguard regiment from her Luccan and Piombonese subjects and given the uniform I am guessing she and her ladies-in-waiting had some hand in the design. I am not sure that the unit was ever raised in it’s entirety before she had to abdicate and retire to private life. But I knew that I wanted to try to paint it.

elisa-napoleon-regt

However I did not want to buy any new figures so decided to do this unit as a ‘What If’. What if it were raised and Napoleon, with his need for manpower had called it to duty. To that end I decided to model this regiment on campaign.  I have half a dozen boxes of Perry French plastic infantry and the spare Carabinier heads from the Perry Cuirassier/Carabinier box set. I needed some more heads and I got these from TMPer Virtualscratchbuilder who posted them to me from Denton, Texas. A couple of weeks later I have got them as finished as I ever get anything.

I have modelled them as a French Infantry Battalion with a Grenadier and Light Company. Also a couple of separately mounted voltigeurs and a custom casualty base for the unit. The flag was too complicated for me to bother with so I went with a simple tricolour in the colours of Lucca and Piombino. Oh yeah – and I gave them an Eagle – why not I say. There is also a solitary Victrix officer in there.

They will be joining some of the other fictional and almost fictional units in my Napoleonic armies in the cabinet.  Hope you like them.

WIP: Mystery Italian Unit

Well, not really a mystery. Just my interpretation of a unit that never saw action as far as I am aware. A guard unit. I am working on the assumption that if they got called to serve in Spain or somewhere, they would have lost some of their spit and polish and taken on a more campaign worn look.  They are doing my head in a bit. To think that I thought British infantry were annoying to paint.

 

My ‘inside the house’ painting desk. I have another one in the Woolshed but I am working over at the casa today. Along the top a unit of Hinchliffe and Connoisseur Hussars that I have not managed to get finished since I brought the minis in the 1980s. One day.

IMG_7278.JPG

Spanish Militia – Elite Miniatures

This is a unit of uniformed Spanish Militia. I am sort of building units in my Spanish for the Battle of Medina del Rio Seco. I say sort of because in reality I tend to paint what I feel like painting and fit them into some order of battle at a later stage.  So saying that, this is a ‘generic’ Spanish militia battalion. it could be the Salamanca, Mondenendo or de Tuy militias. I have given them Spanish brown coats. Some members of the this battalion have not received full uniforms so have gone to battle in fatigue caps and jackets. Once again I have given them two flags because they look prettier with two flags.

Figures are all Elite Miniatures from Elite Miniatures Australia.

Memory Lane: Minifigs British

Some old Minifigs British and a Highland battalion. I was seriously thinking of re-basing these guys to see how they look alongside my newer Old Glory, Front Rank, Perry and Victrix units. Maybe a little day project over the Christmas break.

Anyway, here they are in all their glossy, enamel paint goodness.

 

Spanish Light Infantry – Elite Miniatures

In my last order of Elite Miniatures from Elite Miniatures Australia I got two packs of “Skirmish Pack – loading and firing”. No picture on the website and I was not sure what the miniatures were but decided to get them anyway. Turned out to be two standing and two kneeling firing poses. I was wondering what to do with these and decided to paint them as Light Infantry. I also based them on 25mm rounds  – had thoughts of using these for Sharpe Practice. In the pics below you will see I have also tried them out in some of my Zulu Wars sabot bases – and they don’t look too bad either. They can double up as a small unit of infantry for Black Powder games. To the eight figures I added a colonel and a couple of march attack fusiliers I had left over. That particular base can be used as a brigade commander or as part of a ‘unit” of light infantry depending on the game requirements.

 

When I was taking the pics I had some interested onlookers.

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