Sunday, 19 May 2019

Still Pecking Away...

 After Trumpeter's Salute I took some time away from doing hobby stuffs. A number of Real Life projects had been sidelined while my time and energy was preoccupied with the siege table. Now that I am caught up (sort of) I am back to spending my evenings and some of my weekends painting and building.

A number of small items that I did not finish in time for Trumpeter's  were first on the list. Some resin ladders from Firedragon Games:

A metal supply wagon from Warlord Games:

And a metal hay wagon from Elladan (a very nice little kit):

Currently on the work bench are some more of Jeff's ECW cavalry and some trees and a couple of bridges for our Battle of Gaines Mill which we will be fighting on June 2nd:
I recently received my first Empress figures; two teams of oxen with limbers. I really look forward to painting them; there are no other oxen teams for the ECW available that I know of  in 28mm.

Tuesday, 16 April 2019

Trumpeter's Salute: Our Game

Trumpeter's Salute came and went this past weekend and we had quite a bit of fun. The game was a success and we had the right players sign up for game, doing things we didn't expect which both Murdock and I found entertaining.

I did manage to finish the corner building: the walls are- as usual-  Firedragon Games impressed styrodur cut stone walls, the roof structure made from a a variety of hobby wood products and then roofed with laser cut card shingle strips from Warbases (I believe).
I managed to get the colour I wanted for the building that I wanted for the walls (I feel the walls are a little too yellow) but the buildings at Rockingham are quite a mix of stone so the fact it doesn't match is perfect for me.

The windows are Tichy Train Group O scale windows. Very nice product but a little over sized and modern for 28mm renaissance miniatures. Unfortunately the windows I had ordered for this building didn't show up until Friday.

The 'real' building at Rockingham castle has no windows on either exterior wall and is actually a little narrower acrosss the wall and a little taller than my structure but I wanted the width to fit the wall section and the height was limited by the stone pattern styrodur I had available.

As for the game I didn't get quite as many pictures as I wanted; my tripod broke right after I took the above pictures and haven't had a chance to replace it before leaving for Burnaby. I had to borrow Murdock's tripod when I could and when I was at the table I was helping run it, answering questions and that sort of thing and if I had a chance I went to  look at some of the other tables.
Early on in the siege, Colonel Marsh's men start their sapping operations (powder train n the background). The cards show the attackers plan on some action (unknown to the defenders). These could be either Entrench, Assault, Cannonade, or Stand Fast; some are also bluffs so that the defenders can tell something is going on but not exactly sure what.
Murdock's rules dictate that men from the regiments are picked to do the digging. The flags in the trenches with the engineers show which regiment is supplying the men. This is important because if the defender's sally these regiments are unavailable to fight.
The Parliamentarian commander's view of the battle:
At this point the nervous defenders sally in force in an attempt to drive off the attackers:

Despite some success, they are unable to prevent the attackers from reaching the wall and assaulting it:
The final push sees the attackers gain the parapet and Arnscote castle falls to the attackers:

We had a few suprises such as exploding mines from the defenders: one was devastating the other not so much. I think, historically, neither mine would have been used as we allowed them to be used in this game but they were entertaining and caused some consternation to the attackers. Like the last couple of games this one came down to  the last couple of die rolls with Parliamentarians gaining the victory, in this case by noon on day 6, well before the relief force was to arrive.

For a many more and better pictures and a little more detail I suggest you visit Murdock's Marauders.

Monday, 8 April 2019

ECW siege Table Conclusion

Done! With Trumpeter's Salute coming up this weekend I have a few days to finish off some more details: crates and barrels and that sort of thing. The unfinished table has been out a couple of times for some play-testing , the details of which can be seen on Murdock's Marauders. I was going to move it out of the basement and up stairs to take pictures but then I would have to disassemble it again and move it back downstairs should my daughter come home between exams and want her room back. So, unfortunately, you get an fairly industrial looking background.
For those that don't recall, the centre of the table consists of removable 8" 'tiles' that can be pulled out and replaced with tiles containing trenches or saps.
As the attacker saps his way forward he approaches The Wall. The defender has the option of digging a defensive trench which is why there are removable tiles at the base of the wall.

The defender's side of the wall is a little more boring. I am working on other pieces including a part of a building but I have run into a bit of snag that I may not be able to resolve before Friday. I have more barrels and possibly a wagon. Murdock also has some accessories as well as some civilians.

As Murdock is supplying the figures and the rules for this adventure I took the opportunity to get some of my own out for a photo shoot. Here the Parliamentarian commander observes the engineers digging a trench:

Supplies are moved forward before the sun has fully risen:
A sally by the defenders attempts to disrupt the work party:
But the work goes on undeterred and the cannons are brought forward to pummel the wall as musketeers snipe at their opponents behind the parapet:

The besieged look on; their supplies are running low...
Eventually a breach is made and the defenders prepare to repel the assault:

As usual there are several things I would have done differently.  Cutting all the tiles by hand even with a hot foam cutter did not yield consistent results. I I had to do this again I would get a Proxxon hot wire cutter and glue the foam to 4 mm MDF that way the trenches could be deeper, the tiles much stronger and everything would fit together much better. 
Also, and I seem to be a slow learner here, I would build a frame around the plywood base and then start building the table. Making a frame afterwards and trying to trim and sand the foam is a pain and doesn't result in a nice tight fit ( I should have figured this out after I made my Mordheim table).

Next time I post it will be after Trumpeter's Salute...
... unless I get that other building finished.

Monday, 18 March 2019

ECW Siege Table Part 4

Although progress has been rather slow over the last 2 weeks, I feel like the end is in sight. I made the manor house portion of the table: the wall and accompanying grounds. Although the walls of Rockingham castle are not very thick in reality, (think more manor house than castle) in the TV series careful camera shots give the impression that they are thick and have a walk. I could have made the walls thinner and made a wall walk out of wood but chose to go with a more stereotypical look for both simplicity and use in other games.

 The impressed foam is from Firedragon Games, both their stone wall and their random flagstone sheets.
I also made two breached wall sections. Foam insulation provided the bulk of the rubble with cut individual; stones as well as a mix of Woodland Scenics ballast and talus.

I also managed to get the first layer of 2mm static grass laid down. The line in the top right corner is a trail. Currently a paved footpath is in that area and I just added the trail for interest. I may (if time allows) put a fence along part of it.

Next up is priming the stone work and another layer of static grass on the field; this time a mix of Peco's 6mm summer and 4mm spring to give a it a nice rich look.

Monday, 25 February 2019

ECW Siege Table Part 3

Progress continued this past weekend.

In preparation for this project I bought a few sprues of Renedra plastic gabions. Primed grey then washed and painted in a variety of woody colours.
I stuck a bunch into the foam with a hot glue gun; concentrating on the gun emplacements first before throwing a few around the other trenches.

Next up I built a shooting step using a collection of (I think) bamboo that was cut-offs from a blind we bought:
 I used the same cut offs to build some wooden defenses for the trenches:
The saps had engineering pavises dug into the front of the saps. Generally they had wheels on them and were moved along as the engineers advanced the saps towards the besieged but I choose to show them dug into the dirt. These were made and cast in metal by Murdock:

The defensive trench also got some sharpened stakes to slow down the assaulting enemy. In By The Sword Divided they called them "Swedish feathers" but they didn't really look like how Swedish feathers are usually interpreted:
 A shooting step was also added:

Then just this morning the trenches and earthworks got coated in a mix of Sculptamold and thinned brown paint (Sherwin Williams Half- Caff for those interested):

Things are starting to look a bit dirty! I will leave them sit for a few days until the Sculptamold is nice and hard then start adding rocks, shrubs and grass- the fun part!

Monday, 11 February 2019

ECW Siege Table Part 2

After several distractions I am back working on my ECW siege table for Trumpeter's Salute. The fact that the event is 2 months away is considerable motivation. The table is actually pretty straight forward; in fact most of tricky work is now done. The siege sections have been roughed out; several different pieces with either trenchs or saps. As the inspiration for this scenario is based on the siege of Arnescote castle in the By The Sword Divided TV series I also made sections with the defensive trench out side the wall as an option for the defenders. Here is a sample of how some of the pieces fit together:
 The castle would be on the right in the photo below:
 We decided that the first two rows could be combined into two large sections as Murdock suggested that saps could be dug faster farther from the wall
The flat centre sections have also all been cut and a base coat of tile adhesive and brown sanded grout  applied (plus a few small shrubs):

I couldn't resist finishing off one of the flat pieces;  some Woodland Scenics medium green clump foliage, some bushes of my own making and 2 mm, 4 mm and some 6 mm static grass:
The shrubs are made with a couple of layers of static grass and then flocked with either Woodland Scenics coarse turf or Scenic Express' SuperLeaf:

Next up, the trench and sap sections will get a healthy layer of Sculptamould.