Wednesday, April 26, 2017

SYW in India Progress Report

I have increased the 1st and 2nd Madras Sepoy Regiments from 15 to 30 figures. Now I'm working on the Madras European regiment using the Fife & Drum AWI British Guards in round hats.

I also primed a second huge cannon and crew that I will paint sometime this week.

Click or double click on all pictures to enlarge the view.

The Lion Cannon now has a crew of 6, including a British artillery officer.

There should always be an elephant picture in any SYW in India blog posting.

The 1st Madras Sepoys with the British East India Company standard, which looks like the American Grand Union flag of 1776.

The 2nd Madras Sepoy Regiment.


Saturday, April 22, 2017

The SYW in India Project

The British General's Command Stand - Indus Miniatures figures.

Who would have believed it, but I'm painting Indus Miniatures figures for a SYW in India game at Bill Protz's home on May 6th. I already had about 60 of the Indus British Sepoys that I bought about a year ago, but had never gotten them to the painting table. The pending game at Bill's provided the impetus to go ahead and prime the figures and pitch into the painting.

For starters, I painted one company each (remember, these are units for BAR rules) of 15 figures for the 1st Madras (blue facings) and the 2nd Madras (yellow facings) regiments with the idea of painting one company at a time so as not to get overwhelmed by the project. You can see the results below:

One company each of the 1st Madras (red turbans) and the 2nd Madras (white turbans) Sepoys.
Now I will go back and paint a second company of 15 figures for each regiment to give me 60 figures in total. This is enough to give me one converged battalion of Sepoys to use in the game on May 6th. I have a few more figures on the way from Indus so that I can either paint the 3rd Madras up to 30 figures, or paint two more companies of 1st & 2nd Madras to increase both units to 45 figures.

You can see close ups of the two regiments below:

Close up of the 1st Madras Sepoy Regt.

Close up of the 2nd Madras Sepoy Regt.
I am trying to keep the painting simple and basic with a minimum of two or three tones of each color. This makes the painting go faster. For example, the red tunics only get one hue of red - no highlighting except for the officers. Then some of the other uniform pieces will get two-tone coloring to make the whole figure stand out. An example of this is the turbans that each figure wears - painting two hues of the turban color makes the head stand out to the eye and one doesn't really notice the lack of color depth in the tunic.

I also plan on keeping the bases Old School with just a coating of green paint and no fancy terraining on the base. The figures are mounted on 3/4-inch fender washers and placed on a magnetic movement tray. Again, I don't want to give every figure the full treatment with my paint brush, but there is enough there to give me a good looking army.

The elephant and the artillery crew & cannon were a blast to paint, so to speak. I am also toying with the idea of having three or four command figures (brigade commander stand) on foot on a round stand. The army commander will be the elephant stand. See below:

Artillery stand, some command figures and the elephant.

I had never painted an elephant in my entire life, so I really didn't know where to begin. I did a Google search of Indian elephants and turned up a number of pictures which gave me some ideas for the colors on my elephants furnature.

I went with Ral Partha Sembia Red (sort of Rose in color) for the head and saddle blanket. I didn't want to add any complicated floral designs on the elephants thinking that these might clutter up the end result. Also, I want to practice on painting some designs before painting them on my elephants (plural, yes there might be more of them coming).

A little bit of inspiration for the painting of India elephants.
Finally, we have the gigantic artillery pieces from the Indus figure range. One of the cannons has a lion's head on the mouth of the barrel while the second variation has a plainer appearance. So I had to paint the lion's head first. I just made up the color scheme as I had no idea how Indian cannon might have been painted. I figured that the big huge guns were probably ceremonial in nature, so I gave them a multi-color green with red wheel spokes and painted some of the iron work with a gold-brass color. I doubt that cannon had brass on key elements of metal work, but I liked the way that this cannon turned out. I have the other one to paint prior to the game.

The artillery will not be attached to a stand, The crew are on single washers and the cannon will sit on the table top. Eventually, I'd like to convert some of the Indus elephants to haul a heavy limber to transport these big brutes.

Indus Huge Cannon with artillery crew

I had also never painted skin colors for Indians. I chose two different color schemes. One employed Olive colors with shades and highlights and the other used dark skin base plus dark skin highlights. I mixed some cream color into the dark skin highlights to brighten it up a little. I like mixing up the color schemes as I don't want every figure to look the same.

The Indus Miniatures range is very compelling to look at and to paint. They have some wonderfully exotic cavalry and a wide variety of native infantry.

Monday, April 17, 2017

SYW Painted Figures Clearance Sale

Overhead view of 9 French battalions for sale.
I want to thank everyone who bought the figures that I listed on the blog today. It helps me to clear out some much needed storage space and the funds will be reinvested in Fife & Drum figures and molds.

I also have quite a bit of RSM painted figures for sale. These are from my original SYW Prussian army, which I have since replaced with Minden figures. Nevertheless, this is a good looking army that is nicely based. I will post details and prices later this week.

I need more storage space so I am clearing out an old 15mm SYW project that I no longer wish to keep. The figures are all 15mm and are based for Age of Reason, except instead of 12 figure units, i doubled their size to 24 figures. 

I also have tons of Essex, Old Glory figures and Hallmark artillery equipment, unpainted, for sale.

Please inspect the lot compositions below and if you have an interest in any or all lots, then send my an email at :

All prices do not reflect shipping charges, which will be added to your invoice amount. I prefer to use PayPal for payment.

Unpainted Essex, Old Glory and Hallmark figures.

I have tons of unpainted 15mm British and French plus a one or bags of Austrians. There is also a box of the exquisite Hallmark artillery 3-pounders which are hard to find. My idea was to place a battalion gun in every battalion. In Age of Reason, battalion guns are calculated into the overall firing factor for the battalion rather being figured out by itself.

There are 14 bags of Old Glory figures, 37 bags of Essex British, 13 bags of Essex artillery pieces, 3 bags of Essex Austrians, 2 bags of Essex Prussians, 25bags of Essex French, and 36 Hallmark 3-pounders. I will also throw in some primed but unpainted figures at no extra cost: it appears to be 3 x 12 cavalry and 2x24 infantry - I think that they are French.


The French Brigade

The French forces consist of 9 infantry battalions, of which one is Irish, one is the Gardes Francaises and the other 7 are line regiments. I would normally charge $1.00 per figure but I'd prefer to move the whole lot of painted French:    SOLD!

Irish Bulkeley Regiment, Gardes Francaises and Aquitaine (?)

Three more of the French brigade. Note the use of the Hallmark 3-pound artillery base that has been included with the regimental basing.
A close up view of one of the French regiments. All French battalions are Essex figures.
Irish regiment Bulkeley
The Austrian Brigade

I bought these awhile back and they look like Freikorps brand of figures. They are nicely based on wooden stands with the name of the unit painted on the bottom and covered with varnish so that the hand lettering does not rub off. The actual figures have a flat finish. There are 92 figures in total and SOLD! 

Overhead view of the Austrian contingent: one Bavarian battalion(20 figures), one Austrian (24 figures) one converged grenadier battalion (24 figures) and a converged Croat light infantry battalion (24 figures)

A close up view of the grenadiers and Austrians. 

A close up of the Croats

 The British Brigade

There are five British regiments of Old Glory figures and all have 24 figures and several of them have a battalion gun included on one of the battalion stands. Keith's Highlanders, 23rd Fusiliers, 21st Fusiliers, 12th and 37th Regiments. My recollection is that other than the Highlanders, they are all regiments that fought at Minden. The standard bearers are Essex figures with cast on flags, which are painted to a very high standard (no pun intended).  SOLD!.

Overhead view of the entire brigade

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Another Day in the Life of Altefritzenburg

Townspeople gather at the Gasthaus Alter Fritz to hear the latest news and quaff a few of Herr Otto Schmidt's fine lagers. The Reverand Bockwinkel lectures some of the townspeople about the dangers of spending too much time at Herr Schmidt's establishment. At the right front is Herr Birckenbeil's shoe shop.

The population of the town of Altefritzenburg has grown from eleven to thirty one over the past week. This of course does not include the Prussians who have taken up quarters to the north of the town. I have a few more citizens in the painting queue, getting ready to join the town.

I thought it would be nice to set up some photos of the everyday life in Altefritzenburg. Not everything is military oriented in this part of the world. Nevertheless, the town burgers are more than a little bit anxious about the proximity of the Prussian encampment to the town. The Burgermeister, Herr Munchausen, has been seen at the camp toadying up to the King. More on that later.

Read the picture captions to get a flavor of life in an 18th Century town in Germany. And don't forget to click on each picture to enlarge the view. Those readers who are really computer savy will know that if they double click, the picture will be even larger.

Tradesmen's wagons rumble down the Main Street daily to deliver their goods to the town.
It looks like an important visitor is arriving in a fine looking coach. The driver receives a salute from the town guard. A pair of agricultural workers pay no heed to the comings and goings on the street. They have too much work to do.
A view of one of the back streets from the coach's perspective. The Prussians have set up sentry boxes at every road into town to keep tabs on the traffic and to make sure that none of those rascally Croats sneeks into town.

A young girl and her mother stand outside their home to see what is going on. Stefan, riding atop the wagon, and his father bring a wagonload of ale casks destined for the Gasthaus Alter Fritz.
The citizens draw their water from the town well. Everyone shares in Altefritzenburg.
The Blacksmith's shop is located down one of the side streets where the sound of the clanging anvil and the neighing of the horses will not disturb the townspeople. A young lad brings some horses from the Prussian camp to get reshod.
I would like to work on a livery stable model to add to the town, placing it next to the blacksmith's shop.

West of the town, a crew of laborers load bags of flour from the nearby windmill. They plan on selling the flour to the bakers in the Prussian camp outside of town.

A view of the town commons where any citizen may bring his livestock for grazing.

 I am still looking for a source of metal 28mm cattle and other livestock. I think that Hovels makes them, but I am not sure that Hovels is still in business. I envision a herd of cows being herded through the town very early in the morning, before everyone else is awake. I had this experience at Oberamergau in Bavaria many years ago.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

The New Encampment at Altefritzenburg

The Prussian Army wastes no time in setting up its encampment to the north of the town.

This morning great clouds of dust on the North Road announced that the war was coming to Altefritzenburg, much to the consternation of the citizenry.

Wagon train, escorted by Prussian Pioneers, travels down the road towards the town. You can see the Prussian camp in the background.
The field bakery is quickly set up and the bakers get to the task of baking 5,000 loaves of bread today.

Things are a little quieter in the tent city, which awaits the arrival of the main army. Already, the camp followers are arriving and getting ready to ply their trades. The feldpredigar is trying to nip that in the bud.


Monday, April 10, 2017

The Town of Altfritzenburg in Miniature

The burg of Altfritzenburg in 28mm.

This afternoon, just for the heck of it, I pulled from storage all of my European buildings for the 18th Century and put all of them on my game table. I wanted to see how they all look together if I set them up as a town or village.

View from the south side.
Most of the building models were made by Herb Gundt who, sadly, has decided to retire from the miniature model making business. There are also six older building models made by the late Ian Weekly which I commissioned around 1990. The road modules were made by me around the same time and they have held up remarkably well over the years and over many wargame battles.

I decided that I would leave the town on my game table for several weeks and start working on adding some bits and pieces that will enhance the appearance of the town. I need to work on making farm fields, find some cows to paint, maybe build a village smithy where my Minden Blacksmith can reside and a few other nicks and nacks.  I also need to populate the town with a lot more civilians, so I will be hunting down some more people to augment my Minden, Front Rank and Perry civilians. If you have any ideas on where to get more civilians, then leave a comment in the comment section at the end of this thread.

The town Kirch, Lutheran of course.

A view of the two main north-south streets in the town

the citizens have a morning chat with the Vicar.

Other citizens prefer to say hello at the Gasthaus Alter Fritz.

One of two windmills in the town.

Northern entrance to the town, from ground level.

The workers on their way to their jobs.

Morning delivery of trade goods.

Perhaps the Prussian army under King Frederick himself will set up camp outside of the town. Stay tuned for more and keep coming back.

Of course, click and double click all pictures to enlarge the view to full size.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

SYW Convention Day 2 Battle

AWI action at Groveton
Click or double click all pix to enjoy a larger view

On Saturday April 1, 2017 I hosted a slightly larger set piece AWI battle taking place during the Philadelphia Campaign of 1777. The scenario was inspired by the ACW battle of Groveton (or Brawner's Farm) in 1862, prior to 2nd Bull Run.

The Crown Forces fielded three brigades that included: the British Light Brigade, British regulars, and the Hessian Brigade, positioned on the right, center and left sections, respectively. The Light Brigade included the converged light companies forming a large battalion of 40 figures, 12 Ferguson's Rifles, 2 one-pound amusettes, and a troop (6 figures ) of the 17th Light Dragoons. The British regulars consisted of two line regiments, one converged grenadier battalion and two 6-pound cannon. The Hessian had two musketeer battalions with 40 figures each, one grenadier battalion of 30 figures, and 18 Jagers. 

The Continental Army featured Greene's Division that included the Maryland-Delaware Brigade on the American left flank, the Pennsylvania Brigade in the center, and a brigade of Militia on the right flank. Each brigade fielded four battalions and there were two French 4-pounders and a light 3-pounder augmenting the attack.

The game began with the Hessian Brigade marching down the Graveton Road towards the Groveton Tavern. The Light Brigade, hearing the sound of gunfire, turned around and headed back to the Groveton Tavern (entering the table from the British right flank). The British regulars did not arrive until turn three, then they arrived in the right-center of the table, between the Hessians and the Light Battalion.

The Continental forces saw the Maryland Brigade marching towards the Groveton Tavern, where they would encounter the British Light Brigade. The Pennsylvania Brigade and the Militia were deployed behind a ridge that ran parallel to the Groveton Road and was perpendicular to the Hessians on the road. Both American brigades erupted from the cover and made a mad dash for the Hessians, hoping to catch them on the road in column.

British Light Brigade Deploys Those Curious Amusettes
The Maryland Brigade advances towards Graveton Tavern.

Infantry to the left and cavalry to the right, and meet in the middle!

Light infantry occupy the Graviton Tavern
The Lights having bought some time, the British regulars begin to arrive to the battle and take on the Maryland Brigade.

A view of the British artillery park.

On the left flank, Knyphausen deploys his Hessian Brigade into line to face the oncoming Pennsylvania Brigade.

Overhead view of the Hessian deployment in the wooded area. Jagers to the front, backed by musketeers and grenadiers.
American Militia emerge from the woods and march towards the Hessians.
Militia threatens the Hessian left flank while Pennsylvanians attack them from the front.

In the center, the Hessian grenadiers link up with the British brigade, but they have already taken extensive casualties from the Continental artillery.

With the Hessian Brigade destroyed, the British in the center concede the battlefield to the Americans and fall back.

In the end, the Hessian Brigade was caught in a vise between the Militia on their left flank  and Continentals to their front...and lots of artillery to contend to. As a result, the Hessians put up a good fight, but they could not hold their position against superior American numbers. The Hessians' lack of artillery did not help them any either.

The British regulars were in a stand off with the Maryland Brigade, with neither side gaining any advantage. The Light Brigade was trying to outflank the Maryland Brigade, which began to fall back upon the appearance of the British to their front.

The Crown Forces ceded victory to the Americans and marched off the field. Greene and his officers enjoyed a good night's meal at the Groveton Tavern.