Sunday, March 5, 2017

Successful Launch of the Fife & Drum Forum + Cowpens Project Update

Fife & Drum British Legion figures recently painted for my Cowpens game.

I am very pleased and excited by the successful launch of the new Fife & Drum Miniatures discussion group and forum at:

Fife & Drum Forum

As of Sunday morning (March 5, 2017) there are 108 members, 55 threads and 360 posts since the forum was opened on February 28, 2017. I think that I can safely say that the new forum has legs and momentum to keep going.

The topic categories include:

General Topics
Fife & Drum AWI Figures
Minden SYW Figures
Crank Tara Miniatures
Picture Gallery
Der Alte Fritz Rules

There are a lot of interesting topics including polls on your favorite battles and generals. Fontenoy and Minden are leading the battles poll and Maurice de Saxe and Frederick the Great are leading the fave generals as of now. Even dear sweet loveable Soubise and the not so loveable Cumberland are garning votes in the poll.

The forum will be a site where you can get updates on new figure additions to all three miniatures lines, all of which have the common denominator of having been sculpted by the talented Richard Ansell. We have also had discussion about which figures should be added to all the figure ranges. So if you want to have a little bit of influence over the figures added to the ranges, then this is a place that you should visit.

Other discussion topics as of now include the development of my Cowpens game scenario for the SYW Convention (There are pictures of the American mounted militia figures that I have converted from existing Minden and F&D figures),  various work in progress projects of the members, book recommendations for the AWI and SYW periods, artillery effectiveness in the SYW and the merits or not of selling your miniatures.

If you are a regular following of this blog, then I think that you will enjoy your experience of participating or reading the topics on the forum.

Cowpeas Project Update 

I needed some South Carolina mounted militia figures to use in the game, and since Fife & Drum Miniatures does not yet have such figures, I decided to try my hand at converting some existing figures into mounted militia.

These are fairly easy to do. I did one head swap taking the head from a civilian train driver with brimmed hat, doing the guillotine business on a 1st Continental dragoon firing pistol and voila, a militia dragoon wearing a brimmed hat.

I then selected the civilian train driver wearing coat and tricorn hat and simply affixed a musket to his back and made a string musket sling out of green epoxy putty to help hold the musket onto the figure.

Next there are three variants of the civilian train driver wearing just a waistcoat and a brimmed hat. One version cut out the whip in the right hand and placed a musket in the hand; next was to simply add a blanket roll to the figure and a feed bag to the saddle, the third included the feedbag and a sword strapped around the waist.

I kind of rushed the putty work and it gave me a few ideas on how to make the figures even better. Several people have encouraged me to make some more conversions so that I can make production castings from them. I would like to do this, but as stated earlier, I would have to improve the quality a little bit more.

Mounted Militia figures converted from existing F&D and Minden figures.

The SC mounted militia figures (as shown in the first picture) shown in their painted state.

Rear view of the SC mounted militia. Figures are converted from (L to R): 1st Continental Dragoon firing pistol (with a head swap), soldier in coat and tricorn (from Minden civilian train driver), militia holding a rifle, militia with sword, and militia with blanket roll. The last three figures are converted from the same civilian train driver figure.

I will be posting more updates on the Cowpens project which culminates in the game that I am hosting at this year's Seven Years War Association Convention on March 31 and April 1, 2017 in South Bend, Indiana at the Waterford Estates Lodge hotel.