SPECIAL THANKS. I would like to thank Paul Watson for his sponsorship of several lead figure collections on this blog. Having decided to clear his spare/surplus figures, he generously forwarded them on with no other requirement than they deserved to be restored. I would also like to mention George S. Mills, who kindly furnished a quantity of metal and plastic figures which allowed me to complete another five or six military units, serving in several collections.

Monday, 31 May 2021

NEW TRANSPORT, MECHANISED

Have recently completed two new vehicles. The first was a truck I picked up on Ebay for £10.30 delivered. The original canopy was actually a money box with the words 'happy holidays'. It really didn't do justice to the actual die cast model, and it gave me pleasure to replace it with a plasticard body, carved to look like painted wood. Had problems painting over the door logos, might sand it down and repaint the entire door. I like this model, and with the colour combination of red, black and grey it will look fine attaching it to several armies.




The second vehicle is an old LONE STAR jeep, probably made during the 1960s or 70s. It was in a bad way, and needed paint stripping. Decided to paint some US emblems, added some clear plastic for a windscreen, and used the surplus steering wheel from a previous conversion to complete the model. OK, its not really 1/32 in scale but using actual toys for wargaming grants me certain liberties.
MGB







Sunday, 23 May 2021

More Canadian Troops & New Buildings,

My Canadian Empire troops have gained some new recruits. The Royal Scots of Canada were originally only five figures strong but can now furnish a full battalion of twelve. (Officer awaiting some spares from Replica.)

The Calgary Rifles have doubled to four. Quite a bit of work involved here. The figures requiring metal bases, repaired rifles, and two new heads made of squashed bearskins with steel rod and miliput.





I should mention, the Royal Grenadiers of Canada have also picked up another two figures, now with a strength of eight, and have recently been on active service in the last wargame.

As a footnote, have been experimenting with terrain features designed to sit on the edge of the wargames table, so saving space but still adding to the visual spectacle and the actual game. Here is a cardboard farmhouse and corrugated barn, figures can still be added to the inside of the former.
MGB



Friday, 21 May 2021

MORE SARACENS & TURKS (Medievals, Deetails)

Completed two more units of Eastern Medievals. This pretty well concludes my 54mm collection (I have about 300 Ottomans in 25mm so no point going mad in another scale). However, perhaps this 54mm army could still use a few more shooting figures, have decided to classify some of these as javelin throwers but with only two bowmen they are still somewhat deficient. I must say, it was a pleasure painting these figures. 
MGB




Sunday, 16 May 2021

CHINESE NATIONALIST ARMY 1930s

A few days ago I finished converting a die-cast car into an armoured vehicle. As it doesn't follow a particular design, I decided to attach the vehicle to my Chinese 1930s army, claiming its something a local commander had constructed. Now thought it would be fun to bring out the entire collection, to field the converted Airfix Japanese, Germans, and others which now represent Kuomintang troops and armed police. Picked up the original damaged car for £5.20 delivered, the officer is a converted Prince August casting.











Thursday, 13 May 2021

MY NEW TRACTOR

Actually, not quite new. Picked up this Ertl John Deere Overtime tractor off Ebay. Have been looking for a suitable die-cast toy to combine with my Britains 4.7 Naval Gun. This toy tractor is fairly common in North America but less often seen in the UK. I paid £15.20 delivered. While you can get them for a lot less in the States by the time you have paid postage and Customs Duty the price is often about £30. Daft really, its a British designed tractor. Pleased to say it arrived in a broken box but otherwise in perfect condition, I don't need the box, I don't collect the boxes. Here's a few photos of it already assisting the Empire army near Montreal, in my spares box was an old Britains tractor driver, not a bad fit.

MGB






Sunday, 9 May 2021

The Battle of Portland, Maine (Dominion Wargame)

Most decisions decided by Dice

The Dominion War returned to Maine. A British flotilla had been blockading Portland for some time, but now a message had been sent to the City's authorities, 'they must commence negotiations for their surrender to Empire Forces'. The authorities declined. 

Scenario

The Empire was granted the right to field as many 'Nautical' forces it could muster. The American garrison had previously thrown dice to determine their strength and it was judged to be forty-eight figures plus some supernumeraries.

While the  Royal Navy fleet would seek to engage the powerful harbour guns. a naval brigade would be landed elsewhere to take the city from the landward side. For gaming purposes, the naval action would take place largely off table. It was noted, the harbour guns comprised two siege guns, while the naval force had only two heavy and one medium gun. This would give the Americans a superior range.

There was also another condition. Portland had sent word to the city of Augusta calling for reinforcements, they were expected to start arriving in the area on move eleven. 

THE GAME

With time working against the Empire forces their two divisions approached the city at full speed. The flotilla suffered no losses before making range on the harbour guns. The landing party had the advantage in field guns but not enough to beat the clock. Only a resolute assault on the city by the Royal Marines and the Naval battalion really offered victory. By move six the American field gun had been knocked out, and their gatling gun had failed to inflict serious casualties on the advancing brigade. In an act of pure resolution the naval brigade charged the American position in move eight. Although casualties were similar, the American position broke (unable to rout, they surrendered). 

Now there was a spell when it looked like the harbour guns were going to win their duel with the flotilla. One gunboat had its infrastructure hit twice (4 hits and it must retire or worse), its gun was also knocked out in addition to a crew member. But the tide turned when there was a direct hit (D6) in move seven on a coastal battery, obliterating the gun, two previous hits having no impact on the fortifications.

On move eleven American reinforcements began to arrive but they were still three or four moves away from the city. On move twelve the second harbour gun was taken out and two small parties of Royal Marines secured parts of the dock, while the naval brigade secured their prisoners and two thirds of the residential area. On move thirteen the flotilla informed the American troops still holding a house just outside the city, and the far end of the High Street, that their guns were now aligned on them and would shortly commence firing. Permission was granted for American forces to retire, all prisoners being granted parole.

AMERICAN

Garrison Commander

First Harbour Gun 5 (-1) gun destroyed

Second Harbour Gun 5 (-1) gun destroyed

NG Battalion 12 (-4)

NG Battalion 12 (-3, 9 captured)

NG Skirmishers 6

NG Field Gun 3 (-3)

NG Gatling Gun 3 (-2, 1 captured)

NG Dismounted cavalry 4

(Reinforcements nearby 10)

EMPIRE

Naval Brigade commander 1

Royal Marines Battn. 12 (-3)

Royal Navy Battn. 14 (-4)

Royal Naval Battery 10 and 8 limber-men

Royal Marine Artillery 3 (-1)

FLOTILLA

1st Gunboat 4 crew (-1), 4 Royal Marines, 50% damage to ship including gun

2nd Gunboat 4 crew

3rd Gunboat 4 crew, 3 Royal Marines









MGB

TURKISH ARCHERS, FRENCH OFFICERS. AMERICAN DRIVERS, SPANISH HORSE

A mixed parcel today. Completed two Deetail Medieval archers for service in my Eastern army. Just added miliput to the trousers and created turbans. 


My two battalions of French Marines have now got officers. These figures are converted musicians.


In my spares box were two broken Britains West Point cadets. No real point just restoring these but they had potential to serve as driver and orderly for my American Command car.


And my Spanish army c.1900 has gained another unit of Regulares cavalry (North African regulars).
MGB