Sunday, September 25, 2016

10mm ACW Updates

Time for some 10mm ACW updates.  This time, I am finishing off some more pieces from my "1 of everything" trade that got me into GHQ 10mm ACW.  This includes the seige gun, shown above and some coehorn mortars.  I went with two mortars on the stand for aestetics.  Both of these are models, I don't expect to use beyond objectives for scenario games.

I had the opportunity to finally play some 10mm ACW against other humans last month.  Jon uses limbers to denote an artillery unit's status in the game.  (limber is two stands, damaged guns lose one horse stand.)  I liked the idea, so I decided to copy it!  First up is some re-based Union limber teams.  Next up will be the CSA.  This decision necessitates that I get some more limbers painted up, that has been added to the to-do list.  

Rebasing the limbers like this also frees up the lone guns and trailers that were on the big bases.  The caisson and forge will go on their own base at some point, but the additional guns will be added to the gun line.  I had a few CSA artillery crew left over, so I knocked out another stand to bring the total up to 16.

Finally, I picked up enough Zouave figures to finally finish a 12th stand.  That gives me two complete units, and makes the whole mass a little more symmetrical.  My camera ate the first attempt at a picture, so settle for this poor substitute.

The Brawner's Farm scenario was my second experience with Regimental Fire and Fury, and I liked it.  I found it far more simple, and enjoyable than my old stand-by of Johnny Reb III.  This also gives me some direction for organizing the collection.  I plan on doing a division+ for both sides.  Each division will have four brigades of four regiments (6 stands each), 1 1 cavalry brigade with 4 regiments each, and a sixth "specialist" formation for the odd-balls like zouaves, and Wilder's brigade.  This should give me the flexibility to play most of the scenarios I want to do.

Friday, September 23, 2016

a hunka, hunka CBRN'n love

I have finally finished my initial foray into the realm of chemical warfare in 28mm.  As I pointed out previously  Eureka's Soviet collection is much more robust that it's US counter-part.  I picked up 1 of each casting to try out and there are some interesting ones. Above are two engineers with flame throwers.  It is an interesting concept idea, and I think more suitable for post-apocalyptic game play than WWIII skirmish.  (I would hate to be the guy in MOPP 4 that needs to add even more heat to what is already an unbearable situation.)

For support, I picked up the DshK 14.5mm MG in the anti-air configuration.  This is an interesting set-up as the gunner is sculpted with the butterfly handle in his hands.  Thus you have the option of assembling the weapon system separately, or connecting it too the gunner.  This looks cool if you want to do the mega-base, but it does look a little clunky if you like to base the miniatures separately.

Along with a another RPG gunner, I also picked up this guy with his chemical detection gear out.  This is a great figure and really makes sense with the collection.  I foresee him being really popular with his comrades as he gets to answer the question "When do we get to take this crap off?"  There is no similar figure for the US side, but seriously, who wants to sculpt an ACADA?

Exacerbating this disparity between the US and Soviet collections are a 82mm  team and a 9M14 "Malyutka" (NATO: AT-3 "Sagger") ATGM.  For the mortar team, I again went with separate basing, but may need to get a larger base to put the gunner and tube together to get the right look.  

I did go with a 3" round base for the Sagger as I wanted to get both the launcher and gunner on the same stand.  I played with the idea of mounting them separately to allow for remote firing, but went with this option for aesthetic reasons.  The sculpt comes with 2 extra missiles, which just got added to the bits box and are in need of a project.  

Next to the ATGM is the only other prone sculpt in the collection; a PKM machine gunner.  The barrel on the MG has a very narrow base resulting in a break when I tried to bend it back.  I am going to need to drill and replace it with some brass rod.  The sculpt comes with a bipod for the barrel which should help keep it supported.  I am not a huge fan of prone sculpts for the most part because they tend to look odd with the group.  Ideally, it would be nice to have an entire squad in the prone position.

Overall, I am happy with how these figures turned out.  It would be nice to get a few additional sculpts (AGS-17 springs to mind) for the Soviets and several for the US.  I would love to see a similar group done for NATO, so you could get the Bundeswehr into the game as well.

This project is another total aside for me, as it has far more to do with my interest in CBRN during the cold war than a workable game plan.  That said, I could not resist picking up a little support from Sloppy Jalopy:  
to be continued......

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Light Artillery

Brief update.  I found these towed 105mm guns (either Brit L115s or US M119s, I think they are the same gun.)  in a bin and opted to finish them.  Relatively easy miniatures to paint, but highlight a major gap in GHQ's miniature line:  Gun Bunnies.  There is a multitude of towed guns, and they now come packaged with towed versions and prime movers in a 2/2/2 configuration.  What they are missing are the guys who actually load and fire them.  It would make for much more compelling dioramas I suppose.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Digging In

On the topic of terrain....  I finally got around to finishing off some more terrain that has been languishing about.  First up are the fortified fighting positions shown above.  I have been using these for years with some basic block painting:

I decided to finally give them some appropriate mixes of color and spruce them up with a little static grass to make them look better.

I have overhead cover for two of them, and room for one MG gunner.  I have no idea who made these.
I use two of them as 'damaged' positions although I think they are more likely miscast pieces.

I also finished a collection of sandbag positions.  This includes two resin pieces, some 1/72 model terrain and some 28mm plastic sacks from Pegasus (I think)

I am seriously considering making terrain my primary goal for 2017.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Wizard Kraft terrain kickstarter

River section with the ford section hidden under the bridge

I just saw that Wizard Kraft Terrain is attempting a Kickstarter to expand his range.  I picked up his river set back at Enfilade' in 2000, and have used it ever since.  (In fact, I have sought in vain to expand that collection over the years.)  Most of my terrain set-ups include the river and lake tiles as well as some roads I picked up a couple of years ago.  You can see some examples here:

2" rivers with 1" roads
A pre-school Mason playing in the old house....
Better view of a ford section.

Road sections on a Chain of Command Board

Anyway, if you are interested, visit his site.  Or go to the Kickstarter proper to check it out.  The product is outstanding.  I just think the advertising on this Kickstarter has been tepid at best.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment

Not a new project, but rather an old one I wanted to add to the site.  This is a platoon-scale representation of the US Army's 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment painted and based for Modern Spearhead.  I originally started this collection in December of 2009 when I found a game shop that still sold Microarmor in Radcliffe, KY right outside the south gate to Fort Knox.  I found a GHQ boxed set of Strykers on the shelf and proceeded to pick up some blisters to fill out the group.

This group was also represents my first attempt at using a tinted primer and acrylic varnish "dip"  I had recently ended my tour as a Cavalry Troop commander, so I decided to piece together the 2nd SCR as my selected force.  (This was before the 3rd ACR went Stryker as well.)  I always liked the "Dragoons" and have been interested in their transition to light cavalry following the 1st Gulf War. Back in 1994 they were slotted to field the M8 Armored Gun System, until congress realized it was a "light tank" and killed the program.  I believe the configuration has changed again since I painted this group with the inclusion of MGS in the Anti-Tank company, more Engineers, and more towed guns, and replacing the M198s with M777s.  Also, the 2nd SCR is slotted to receive upgunned M1126s with 30mm cannon replacing the 12.7mm cannons.

Anyway here is the group. The scale is roughly 1 model = 1 platoon of 4 Strykers.

4th Squadron "Saber" (reconnaissance, surveillance, and target acquisition squadron)
Headquarters Stand
Nemesis Troop – 2 M1127 (RV)
Outlaw Troop – 2 M1127(RV)
Palehorse Troop – 2 M1127(RV)
Mortars -2 M1129 (Mortar Carrier)  (Each troop has 2 120mm mortars, so I represent the six tubes with 2 stands )
Reaper Troop – 2 M1134 ATGM (I may need to add 1 M1128 MGS to keep them current)

Regimental Engineer Squadron "Pioneers"  3xM1132 Engineer Vehicles

Regimental Fires Squadron "Artillery Hell"  3x M198 with prime movers

Close up of engineers Argonaut and Beast) and artillery (Archer, Bulldog,Cobra) 
1st Squadron "War Eagles"
Headquarters "Mustang" Troop 1xM1130 (CMD), 2 xM1129 (MC), 1x M1127 (RV)
Apache Troop – 3x M1126, 1xM1128
Bull Troop – 3x M1126, 1xM1128
Comanche Troop – 3x M1126, 1xM1128
2nd Squadron "Cougars"
Headquarters "Headhunter" Troop 1xM1130 (CMD), 2 xM1129 (MC), 1x M1127 (RV)
Eagle Troop – 3x M1126, 1xM1128
Fox Troop – 3x M1126, 1xM1128
Ghost Troop – 3x M1126, 1xM1128

3rd Squadron "Wolfpack" is still incomplete and requires a little love to get it up to the standard of the rest of the group.
It has
Headquarters "Hammer" Troop 1xM1130 (CMD), 2 xM1129 (MC), 1x M1127 (RV)
Iron Troop – 3x M1126, 1xM1128
Kilo Troop – 3x M1126, 1xM1128

Lightning Troop is apparently sliced to support another unit....

Expect to see some more updates like this over the coming weeks. This blog is basically my diary, and I am trying to upload all the parts of my collection I intend on keeping as I sort through through and cull the herd.

Be warned, this also means a swarm of Science Fiction posts as I went through a pretty hefty Battletech and Babylon 5 Fleet Action phase back in the early 2000's.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

and Iran, Iran so far away....

I was editing my pictures, when I came across these.  I finished painting up a collection of extra micro armor models as Iranians in order to try some Iran-Iraq war scenarios.  I went with a simple Tan and brown camouflage scheme I saw in some pictures from an Iranian parade to help distinguish them from my Tan Iraqi vehicles. The Iranian army makes for an interesting mix of vehicles as they were a western client state in the 70s, followed by purchasing a lot of Chinese and Soviet hardware during the war.

I think these are H&R castings for two Recoil-less Rifles and two Jeeps for recon work.

A troop of Chieftains.  

A pair of M163 VADS for some SHORAD work and some Mortar carriers.

Some M60s (various manufacturers) and an M577 to use with a BN HQ.

More H&S(?) Pattons?

A few PT-76s.

Some Shilkas to work with the M163s.

Some actual newer sculpts.  These are rocket carriers from the "Third World" line from GHQ.

T-55s (or skirtless Type 59s)

A mix of BMP-2s.  I think the majority of these are actually CinC BRM models,

A supply of BMP-1s/WZ-501s to add some punch to the infantry.

One last group shot to show off the group.  I definately need to re-take these with a better camera.