Sunday, August 14, 2011

New Man Cave Unveiled!

A view of the entry way into Fritz's new Man Cave or wargaming emporium.

For a long time now I have been eyeing the larger of two sections of the basement with the idea of eventually turning it into my wargame room. When we moved into Schloss Seewaldt seven years ago, I took the smaller section for my wargame room and allocated the larger part to Lady Emma Cuddlestone-Smythe for her play room. Since Lady EC-S is about to become a teenager, I thought that the time was ripe for presenting the idea of moving into the larger section to Mrs. Fritz.

To my great amazement, she said YES!

It helped that I spent my recently concluded two week vacation doing everything but wargaming and painting, so I suppose that I had built up some credits in the marital ledger. It also helped that I promised to turn the smaller, former wargame room, into a teenager pad for Lady EC-S. More about that later...

So taking the point of view that no time is better than the present, I delved into the gargantuan task of clearing out the larger part of the basement and moving all of my wargaming accoutrements into the new Man Cave. I spent about 6 hours on Saturday afternoon clearing out all of the old toys and accumulated junk and hauling much of it off to the local church, which accepts junk to sell at their annual rummage sale to raise funds. I then spent another couple of hours on Saturday night hauling all of the history books that I owned into their new quarters. If any of you have ever had the pleasure of moving several hundred books, you know what a back breaking task this can be.

So then, let's take a tour of the new digs (click pix to enlarge):

As you walk down the basement stairs (left) you enter my work bench area where I clean and prime figures and terrain bases. Behind the work bench I have now installed shelves that hold all of my collected rules, wargame magazines and "Tradition" military uniform magazines (the French version).

A view of the reading area complete with comfy chair, fake fireplace and tons of books. The painting table can also be partially viewed on the right. The chair belonged to my Father - it was his favorite chair so it holds some sentimental value to me.

The view from the reading corner to the back wall. The white stackable plastic boxes hold much of my buildings/terrain made by Herb Gundt. I can stack 8 plastic drawers high. To the front you can see my 6ft by 15ft wargame table. I could add another 5 ft of table if necessary. There is also room for back table (2.5ft x 15ft) running parallel to the main table, to provide depth to the table for reserves.

The view from the back of the room (near the storage shelves) look back towards the reading corner. You can see one of the "back tables" that run parallel to the main table. The old PC will be stored away and I can put down more terrain squares of the type shown on the main table.

Another view of the back end of the room, providing a closer view of the stackable storage drawers (left) and plastic storage shelves (I have two such shelves, but only one is shown hear).

Fritz's painting table. The reading corner is off to the left and the game tables are behind the painting table. I want to reorganize the paints into paint racks so that things look a little more tidier than they are at the present.

So there you have it, my new wargame room has been completed. I still have a lot of aching joints and muscles to show for it, but the pain is worth the gain of a new game area with lots and lots of space. As noted above, I currently have a 6ft wide by 15ft long table, with two back tables running parallel to the main table to provide depth for reserves and for flank marches.

I am really pleased with the way that this project turned out. The extra space is wonderful and the lighting is much better, with overhead flourescent light fixtures. It also provides me with enough room to gather all of my books into one area for reading as well as a well-lit painting area. The ample walls also enable me to hang all of my military prints on the walls for display.

I hope that you have enjoyed this tour of the new Man Cave.


  1. Wow she's about too be a teenager... My how the years have flown bye. Now all we have too do is get you too update that stoneage computer and your cave will be all set.Maybe a nice T.V too watch a war movie or two while you work too get you in the mood.

  2. Applause and bravos Jim. Plus sincere thanks to herself maximus and herself minimus for the change. Just lovely.

  3. Great! And great daughter, far away from the TV depiction of american teenagers.

  4. Sounds and looks like a win-win situation for everyone concerned. Nice and bright. Well-lighted. Spacious. Comfortable. Wow!

    Best Regards,


  5. Holy Smoke!! As Jackie Gleason once said, "How sweet it is".

  6. Fantastic. You american's are v fortunate to design sensible houses with purpose built and spacious basements. Regretfully cellars over in the UK are increasingly a rarity and far too often much smaller and with v low ceilings. There is also the problem of dampness. Now if we talk about garages...I also appreciate your comment about your father's chair. I have one of those!


  7. Great job on setting this up. Light and airy. Looks like an inviting place to paint, play a game or just hang out.

    Now about those glass display cases for the figures...


  8. So jealous thats a very nice arrangement there and so much bugger and indeed neat 7 tidy compared to my lesser cave :-)


  9. Blimey, that's very impressive.

  10. Wow! Impressive.
    (not all American houses have such basements. I know in California, for example, houses very rarely have basements at all. And the garage is out because it gets extremely hot there in our 100 degree summers)

  11. Lovely indeed, Jim. I have a great game room that I'm quite delighted with . . . but yours puts mine to shame.

    I do have one suggestion. I have the same type of folding tray tables that you have by your painting desk. And, from personal experience, I highly recommend that you rotate it 180 degrees so that the "bar" is away from your painting chair . . . otherwise I can pretty well guarantee that you'll accidentally kick it many times (I know that I have done so).

    A wonderful gaming area . . . good lighting is one of the greatly under appreciated necessities for us . . . particularly as we age.

    And your reading chair looks so comfortable too.

    Yes, Jim, even though I've got a great game room, I am jealous of yours.

    Well done, sir!

    -- Jeff

  12. I know moving the books alone is backbreaking work.

  13. My Dera Fritz,

    As is said in "Field of Dreams", 'Is this Heaven?' Looks just like it to me!

    Best Wishes and thanks again for so much candy!


  14. I am, very sorry to say, one of those Americans without a basement!

    Your new setup leaves me in awe, and just a little jealous!

    But mainly, I wish you all the best in your new "cave"!


  15. Jeez that room looks bigger than the entire ground floor of my house! Your good lady does realise that she'll only ever see you now at feeding time doesn't she?
    Envy isn't a long enough word!


    With time this space may progressively fill with new art, storage and display.

    Certainly you have game in comfort with space for more than the usual 3-4 players and everyone has plenty of elbow and hip or ~ahem~ 'spare tire room'.


  17. A great room - My dream to have one day when we finally settle