Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Bavarian Cavalry - WIP

Here's the progress on my converted Bavarian Chevaux Leger trooper of the vierten Regiment König using a head conversion on a French Chasseur á Cheval figure

I think he does well as a Bavarian, despite the fact he's wearing overalls. I haven't yet seen an image of Bavarian cavalry in overalls, but that doesn't prove that they didn't!

I'll tidy him up before putting the finishing touches on his mount before you see him next.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Bavarian Cavaly Conversion

Here's the conversion prototype for my Bavarian cavalry project for 2014's Borodino big-bash game.

First up is a picture of a dashing Bavarian Chevaux-Leger trooper found on the web.

And here's my version:

Since the last time you saw him, he has had a plume and sash added. The plume is a lump of paper towel wet with PVA, rolled into shape and glued to the side of the helmet. The sash is made from Miliput and textured with the blade of a knife.

Partially completed equine test figure

The horse is from Italeri's Lancers of the Guard of which I have inherited plenty, including my latest swap with Conrad Kinch, documented here in an earlier post. They'll suit me fine, even though they aren't technically correct; the portmanteau should be cylindrical, and the saddle shouldn't have a sheepskin over the top. I'll ignore the first and paint over the second, so that on the tabletop you'll never be able to spot the difference!

James from the ANF kindly posted some pictures from his recent Borodino game of HaT Bavarians all painted up in their finest glory for to help me judge what they look like painted. Thanks for that James. I may still buy some, but I'm not a fan of HaT's earlier output. I may get sick of the conversion process to make 4 whole regiments this way, though!

PS. I was trying to access the Vinkhuijzen collection to look at Bavarian uniform plates and couldn't get  through. Then I realised that it's a collection of the New York Public Library! Sure enough, they're all in lockdown (including the server) while they endure Hurricane Sandy. Good luck, NY (and all the rest of the NE)!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Cazadores de Barabstro - Completed

Here are the completed HaT pre-production figures for their forthcoming Spanish Light Infantry set, painted in the colours of the Cazadores de Barbastro.

I'm very impressed with HaT's latest output as these figures are lovely to paint and don't suffer from the over-active poses that some manufacturers are blighted with. The detail is crisp and clear and the poses are all useful for wargaming, running the gamut from march attack, advancing and the various stages of the firing drill. I have a sprue of grenadiers as well, which I'll paint up soon, too. I'm looking forward to the commercial release of the Spanish infantry sets, which looks like will be happening early next year.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Bounty from the Blogosphere #2

I received a box in the post this week all the way from the Emerald Isle, the contents of which were another swap with that footsore gentleman freshly returned from his march to the Boyne, Conrad Kinch.

We had arranged another swap where I'd buy him something that he required for his current WWII project and he'd send me the sweepings from his spares cupboard (actually a few of the Italeri chasseurs I've been after, a heap of Italeri dragoons, assorted Italeri British infantry, Hat Nassauers and Strelets Guard Chasseurs). All of these will find their way onto my painting desk at some stage either as complete figures or fodder for conversions.

Enclosed in this package was a handwritten note from the man himself. A handsomely written piece it is too. Obviously a discerning chap where his blog reading habits are concerned; a real scholar and a gentleman!

I'm not sure what sort of beasties he's referring to, though. The only beasties we have here are the kangaroo I use as a sparring partner, the poisonous spiders I sprinkle on my breakfast, the venomous snake my daughters play with and the shark we keep in the swimming pool. They're just the everyday animals we deal with; no distractions required!

Kinch's message

Cardboard cornucopia  of plastic goodness!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Cazadores de Barbastro - part 2

I've finished painting the new HaT Spanish Light Infantry figures in the uniforms of the Cazadores de Barbastro. Now they just require shading and basing.

Sorry about the quality of the pictures. I'll take better ones once they're completed

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Movement Trays - part 2

I've used up the last of my sheet metal to create movement trays for infantry in line formation.

While my British formations don't spend as much time in column formation as my French troops, it gets tedious moving a whole formation forwards once deployed in line. After the successful modification of my column movement trays, I thought I'd give line movement trays a go. I'd always toyed with the idea, but it always seemed more trouble than it was worth. Hopefully with the wider lip, it will make picking a whole formation up easier than the tray design I used previously. The tray will get a test this weekend and if it's a success, I'll make more for the other regiments.

If nothing else, it will certainly make my troop formations prettier!

I think it works quite well.

Movement trays modelled by the 3rd Regt. of Foot (Buffs)

Monday, October 22, 2012

La Battaglia della Cresta del Maiale Fiammeggiante

After a week of much silly email banter about the efficacy (not to mention historical accuracy!) of flaming pigs in our rules, John R. took on the weighty task of organising a game to celebrate our fascination with ambulatory crackling. Unfortunately it didn't stretch to actually launching a herd of self-roasting pork-chops at the enemy, but it was a lot of fun nonetheless!

I had intended for this game to be the debut of the Italian Conscripts of the Guard, but realised I'd left them on my workbench only when I was pulling in to the car park. D'oh! I replaced them in my OB with 4 French hussars instead.

John designed the scenario, where the Austrians held the ridge. The Franco-Italians had to force a passage through the Austrians as they were blocked to the right by an (off-table) Austrian force much too big to engage, and by a wide, unfordable river on the left. The victory conditions for us were to get at least 3 units through the Austrian line and off the board, while the Austrians needed to stop us. Points would be awarded for the number of enemy casualties inflicted and units broken.

It was a truly epic see-sawing game with the Franco-Italians looking gone for all money on at least a couple of occasions, but the fickle finger of fate, in the shape of some truly bizarre dice rolls, allowed us to force a draw against the aggressive Austrians.

Wee, wee, wee all the way home!

The battlefield with Pete looking on
The Franco-Italian forces with Garry's command in the foreground. He had the heavy mob of converged grenadiers, dragoons and a 12-lber battery.

The Austrian set-up. This is only a part of their forces. There were plenty more to come!

Franco-Italian first move. I conform with John's forces on the right...

...and Garry's on the left.

Tim's Austrian guns strike a blow first move...

...two 10s in a row resulting in...

...the death of John's cavalry commander!

This was immediately followed by Tim's Uhlans charging John's now leaderless cavalry. I took the opportunity charge in support with my chasseurs...

...resulting in a smashing victory and failing to remain in control, we went battle-mad! RAAAAH!

Then paid for it by bouncing off Andrew's infantry columns in closed column with losses.

John's right flank under threat from a combined arms advance. I sent my 2nd Chasseur column to support John's infantry

Back in the centre, I withdrew my chasseurs, while John forgot and left his dragoons hanging . My fault of course, being allied C-inC!

Garry's grenadiers turning the woods into an Austrian meat grinder!

Tim launches his Jagers at John's closed column, which is also  holding his anchored line in place.

After smashing that, his jagers careen into the square behind and smash it, too!

They end their turn behind the previously anchored line.

In response to the hussars charge,  John successfully forms the line into square ...

...which resists the oncoming hussars... rolling a 5...

...while Tim could only rol a 1!

Next turn John's square gets revenge on the Jagers, firing into their flank. The Jagers failed the resulting morale test and fled.

Andrew brings his wall of white over the ridge!

Seemingly, not a lot to resist him with!


Then more Austrian cavalry made their appearance!

Garry manages to bring his 12lbers to bear in a most alarming manner for Pete's grenadiers

John tried to encourage Tim's other battalion of Jagers to follow the first, but they formed square in time...

...and sent the chasseurs back the way they came!

The right flank starts to look decidedly messy, with Garry's grenadiers cracking Pete's force. But will Garry have enough in the tank to exploit his gains?

I try to get my little horse battery into the advancing infantry's flank, without exposing myself to the approach of the Austrian cavalry behind the town.

My regular-rated infantry, including my Italians, facing off against Pete's infantry on the ridge.

Andrew's Austrians make up their minds which target to go for first.

John sits and waits for the oncoming tide!

Meanwhile, Garry has swept all before him! But there are more battalions advancing behind the ridge!

Andrew charges a whole brigade at John's 12lbers which stands and fires, while a single battalion of light infantry meets the Austrians...

...and gets spanked for their trouble!

The guns get engulfed...

...and swallowed!

My should I, shouldn't I quandary is solved, when Pete charges 2 battalions down the hill at my 3 .

Bad dice rolling didn't help, with my brigade repulsed with losses and disorders

Andrew then brought up another battalion (did they have a cloning machine somewhere in the back?!) to cover Pete's flank and threaten my horse guns.

I looked in a bit of a pickle, so I charged my 2 remaining infantry battalions at  one of Andrew's in closed column. As both of mine were rated veteran and were in regular column, I felt confident...

...until I rolled this...

...and Andrew rolled this!

At last, Darren's reinforcements entered the board!

John charges 2 battalions against one of Andrew's in another inconclusive fight.

Garry stabilises his line in time for Pete's reinforcements to emerge from behind the ridge...

...while his 12lbers play on Pete's troops on the ridge.

Rather than waiting to be pummelled, Pete takes action...

...but is blasted off the ridge for his troubles!
"Bring it on!" says Garry.

My horse battery fled after being fired in the flank. The space was filled by another battalion in closed column which advanced aggressively on my small unit of hussars. 

The situation I found myself in; My light battalion missed the opportunity to form square as Andrew  brought up his cavalry, and the battalion 3rd from the right was in dire danger of being caught in the flank. Most battalions were carrying multiple disorders.

I moved the hussars, who were fired at and destroyed, which allowed me to try and retrieve the situation. I moved the artillery up and the infantry back to be a threat to any attacking infantry.

Meanwhile, Darren moves up his cavalry and guns to drag my chestnuts out of the fire on the left, at least.
Darren's skirmished hussars get ready to tease Pete's infantry

And on the right, John sends his reformed dragoons against another of Andrew's battalion columns

Andrew stands firm and fires, causing a casualty, but being already down to half strength, this is more than John's dragoons can stomach and they turn tail again!

Andrew's chevaux-leger charge my light infantry, who have the general attached,  which makes the odds of forming square much better, with the added bonus of co-operative dice! The Austrian cavalry bounce!

This was followed by a charge on the horse guns, which limbered and fled, resulting in one of those tricky conundrums not covered by the rules and not likely to happen again in a long time! If there was no combat, then there should be no pre-melee morale check, which would mean the flank fire from the square wouldn't have affected their charge meaning that the result of halting 2" from the target wouldn't apply. But because the charge didn't result in combat, should they ignore the halt at 2"response and be allowed to occupy the ground, or should they have to take a normal morale check? Hmmm, back to the drawing board....

Anyway, the game ended there in a dramatic stalemate, with the Austrians taking the honours with numbers of casualties inflicted and units broken (but only just!), and by the fact that none of the Franco-Italian units had been able to cross the ridge, although Garry damn near did. If only he had something in reserve!

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