Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Die Volksschutzmann kommt!

Working the 1813 "Befreiungskrieg" theme, I decided I needed a LOT of Landwehr style fellas.  As an unabashed cheapskate, the IKEA box full of Warlord plastics appealed.

However, rather than just paint them in an alternative colour scheme, I decided an head swap would help to lift them from mediocrity.  Now I have a use for all those spares wearing Russian shako!

Reichskreis Volksschutzmann.

Ten minutes with the power drill, toolkit and a dab of Squadron putty smoothed with Testors cement enabled a workable solution.  I am especially pleased that I have found a use for those rather poor Prussians!  When I am in "full production" I reckon I will use Milliput rather than the aggressive and smelly solvents.

Finally, the song of the Peoples' army (please excuse any grammar errors, my German is basic!  Please feel free to highlight my mistakes!)

Die Straße frei der Volksarmee! 
Offene Tore für die Volksschutzmann! 
Wir folgen dem leuchtenden hoffnungs fahne, 
Der Tag der Freiheit und Freude bricht an!

Sunday, 12 January 2014

1813 Reichskreis Infantry

Mademoiselle Biche.

When a relatively quiet Sunday presents itself, grab it with both paws!  The ladies are out, son on the PC and "La Biche" sleeping on the sofa.  I put some Bruckner on the stereo and got chopping to see if I could create something a bit "different" from the various plastic sets I have lying about.

They fit well on the 40mm base.

Working with some Warlord Russians as a base (I have hundreds after an Ebay score) - I added Perry KuK helmets and some Victrix French backpacks (I may well use some Warlord French backpacks too) I then slapped them on a custom "Warbases" 40mm squares to see if they looked OK.

Lots of variety is possible.

I think they do the job quite nicely, looking suitably "composite" like so many of the conteporary "Zwergstaat" armies.  Most importantly, they don't resemble simple head swaps!

Now granted, the Warlord hands are BIG but I think they are acceptable.  I may add sabres or save these for the Grenadier battalions, I will see how the glueing goes - I want to keep assembly relatively fast as I am going to need at least four 24 man units of these chaps and they require a bit of plastruct work around the collar stock.

French backpacks pre-surgery.

These will probably appear Saßenlander Gray or Teschenburger Red.

Next up is a mounted officer to be patched together, probably from bits in the Victrix KuK box...

UPDATE: Whilst fiddling about trying to slice a whole lot of collars I decided a simple Milliput push-mould would be best.  Now I am waiting for it to cure so that I can get assembling!  It will just end up as a notched spacer to liquid glue in place. I think I will use the pause to get a unit ready for assembly.

Friday, 13 December 2013

Progress at the Militärgrenze!

Nasty Grenz ragamuffin.

Pandours or Grenzers!  What a subject.  Big moustaches and bigger knives. Drunkenness, rape and pillage - unsavoury fellows indeed. Now how to model them without resorting to the purchase of boring old KuK types...

A somewhat fey Pandour.

I have poured over catalogues for years and have come close to buying OG Ottomans, TAG Poles and even Foundry Pandours. However all these seemed "wrong" looking too uniform and civilised.  Then I stumbled upon Essex Miniatures' new site and found Cossacks, Poles and Tartars that seemed interesting.  They were offering 15% off the (now) rather high asking price so I jumped in - and I must say the package contains some splendid figures!

I bought a regiment of foot and one of horse.  The foot chaps are shown below.  All wearing kaftans and wielding some nasty looking arquebuses.

Cossack with arquebus.

Polish peasant with arquebus.

Within each code are variations in pose and head so the unit has a suitably messy demeanour.  The cavalry are likewise varied and sport lances, bows and shields - the last of which is being sent to the bits box.

As usual, I passed on the Essex nags as they are not too good.  A visit to my well equipped horse trays will provide some suitable mounts I am sure.  This is made easier by the fact saddles are cast onto the riders.

I plan a detailed review in the near future but in the meantime I recommend these figures wholeheartedly.

Saturday, 23 November 2013

Pissing into the wind!

"Oops a daisy!"

Recently, life at Schloss Krautheim has been exceedingly stressful.  Poor quality building requiring remedial work and the usual misery of rearing a brood of unruly children takes a great toll.

That said, I have been countering stress insomnia with thoughts of this project and the direction I wish it to take.

The latest and (in my opinion) most entertaining solution is to construct a "Kreisheer" comprising regiments from the five States.  This should provide variety and a more colourful spectacle.

Budgetary constraints have forced me to construct a back-engineered prototype figure to be used as a Saßenland or Dirlewitz musketeer.  All being well I will reveal him in the next few days. As I will need no more than 48 of these, I feel the task should be practical to achieve once a production line is set up.

Hopefully, I will soon manage to devote the time I wish to this project and stop feeling as if it is one step forward and two back!

Friday, 1 November 2013

Not slacking - honest!

If only my life was such fun!

Things have been pretty hectic here at Schloss Krautheim.  Having recently moved home we are engaged in combat on multiple fronts to get people to fulfil their various legal obligations.  Sometimes it makes one wish to jump in front of a carriage!

That being said, the 1720/40 project rolls on, albeit retarded by the domestic situation.  The armies are massing ready for conversion, basing and PAINT!  The map is progressing nicely.  Plus the "Grenzwachtturm" design nears fruition.

Finally, a redisign of some elements of the blog will be required as more than one Nation will soon be included.  Next up is the "Prince Archbishopric of Dirlewitz", a small but influential neighbour ruled over by a somewhat jaded member of the clergy.

More to follow.

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Presenting the "Beimbacher Reichskreis" of 1720

Click for a better view - it is a fairly big picture!
Complete with Reichkreis standard carried by the various State contingents alongside their own.  Place names have yet to be added as have roads etc but I have made a start on the position of towns and cities along with the internal boundaries.  The Prince Archbishop of Dirlewitz domain will be the land-locked territory surrounded by the other States.

Veterans will notice that the boundaries are very similar to the original B-S map albeit with some logical alterations.

Any helpful suggestions are appreciated.