Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Blogging down.

Have not blogged in a while on any of my blogs so today thought I would jot down some quick notes. I recently met Mark Severin of Scale Creep miniatures (first rate fellow) in Cincinnati, Ohio and picked up some First Corp Mexican American War miniatures. I have been reading several books on the Mexican American War and am looking to do some skirimish 28mm stuff soon. Pendraken has anounced the release of some new Mahdi cavalry that I am looking forward to and I believe I will be able to get some Sudan painting done this holiday. Just a quick blog this morning hopefully more to follow soon. I am toying with the idea of combining my two (2) blogs Cavenderia and Capt Verbeek into one non-genre specific wargaming blog but am still thinking on that for now.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Captain in 28mm

Captain Lucien Verbeek rides again. This time as Perry Brothers' English Command on Egyptian Horse. I painted this lovely figure during 6 lunch hours at work. I really love the animation in the figure and couldn't resist having the first photo in sepia as a old time photo.

Here is the Captain and Teufel in technacolor. While looking at some Belgium 19th century uniforms I found that the Grenadiers wore black trousers with a red stripe and decided that the Captain had once been a member of this illustrious group. I am particularly pleased with this version of his faithful steed. I have watched Hidalgo a few times and looked at several pictures of Mustangs and Pintos before deciding on this color scheme. I am quite proud of my efforts.

I painted Teufel's nose a flesh color and gave the captain a red bandanna for a pop of color. I felt of all the 28mm colonial figures I have seen on-line this one captures the spirit and reckless abandon I dream the captain would have had. The miniature only has a mustache so I painted in the captain's goatee. The blister came with three commanders so I plan to paint up the other two as a start for some skirmishing, maybe the Sword and the Flame.

I still need to add some flocking to the base but had put off posting for some time and wanted to post some pictures. As I do not currently play 28mm, starting to paint 10mm again for the big game. I would like to send this figure to Monsieur Prost as a military observer of the campaigns of General Pedigree if he would have him. The 15mm of Captain Verbeek was introduced by Steve the Wargamer in a captives scenario and Monsieur Prost has had a few of his number captured also perhaps the Captain is a fellow prisoner. I am painting up Pendraken 10mm Colonials this week and hope to post a few pics next week. I am in a group painting project and I hope to complete 3 brigades of Imperial Cavenderi troops by the end of September based for Battles of Empire. See you soon.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Battles for Empire Playtest Teaser

Played my first game of Battles for Empire 1870-1902 and really enjoyed it. I will have a review soon and a link to my friend Ray's web-site that hosts some photos. I have not been gaming or painting much this summer as there is many outdoor activities to conduct but I did paint up a little something this week that I am quite pleased with and will post some pictures tonight or tomorrow. Here's a hint: brown and white and belgium all over.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

First Naval Brigade

Today at lunch I banged out the first stand of my naval brigade. Miniatures are Pendraken 10mm.

Not a great amount of commentary. It is a bit frustrating that in person these figs really pop but the camera zooms in so tight it makes them appear poorly painted, I must improve my picture technique. The pictures as seen in the blog windows are probably a better representation of how they will look on the table than clicking on them which makes the pictures huge. But go ahead and click on them you can see some of the technique that way.

I varied the pants and shirt on two (2) of the figures to add a little variety. The figs are well sculpted but are only offered in one (1) pose with the straw hat instead of a sailor's hat. However, they will serve me just fine.

A little better lighting on this picture. I am intentionally using more muted tones on the Sudan figures as I thought the feel would be warmer, however to get them to pop I might brighten them up some.
Final picture showing the kerchief in a lighter blue and scabbard. Still have not decided on my basing must work on that next as many Hadendawa are ready to be based.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

First Scratch Built Buildings

Here are my first attempts at scratch-building some Sudan village pieces. After having read a thread on The Miniatures Page and visiting the Touching History Blog. I decided to give these a shot. Here we see some British soldiers manning the village among some of my new palm trees.

The buildings were not very difficult to make as they are architechtually simple. The buildings are made out of matt board folded, scored and glued. After assembly, I cut out some doors and windows with an exacto knife. I covered the buildings in drywall compound. I then cut some basal wood strips to make the door frames and glued some wood inside the buildings for the doors. The building on the left has a roof made out of bits cut from a hand broom.
Last shot a little bit closer in. I am toying with the idea of making the buildings large enough to hide one base within them. At my 1:10 scale this would equal approximately 50 men so that seems as if it might be a bit crowded inside. I am working on a domed masque next. You can click on the pictures to blow them up.

A couple of books I have been reading and can recommend. The Zulu War by Michael Barthorp. Easy to read book with brief overview of the forces involved and a chronological sequence of the campaign. Good book for introduction into the period. My friend Ray is doing the Zulu war in 1/72nd so this was a good read for me to quickly learn about the period.
The Black Jacobins by C.L.R. James. This is not an easy read. An old History professor of mine recommended this book as the definitive book of the Haitian Revolution. Very thorough well researched book a bit dry, very social and Marxist historical perspective, a very strong examination of the causes of the revolution but with barely a mention of the tactics or battles fought. An excellent scholastic book but not much for the wargamer. I hope to one day write some rules for this conflict as it is terribly fascinating period of revolution and change.
Well that is what I have been up to lately. Good gaming.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

10mm Palm Tree Tutorial

Welcome to my first terrain tutorial. I will be discussing how I am making palm trees for the Sudan campaign in 10mm. I have seen several tutorials on making palm trees in other scales but I was unsure how well they could translate to a smaller scale so I searched through the floral department of my local little old lady hobby store, a.k.a. A.C. Moore and purchased some materials to try my hand at making some itty-bitty palm trees. I think you will enjoy the final results. Enough introduction let's get to it.

While looking through the fake plant isle I came upon this Queen Anne's lace plant. The plant was $2.00 American and will yield approximately 15 palm trees. You may find uses for the stem and leafy bits, save them for another project, but for this tutorial we will be using the flowers.
The picture to the left shows a close-up of the flowers. They are attached to the stems through a tube at the base of the flowers. I choose this plant because the little flower bits curve out and downward which will help to simulate our palm trees.
Here is a close-up of an individual flower once removed from the stem. I was surprised to find out that the flowers were not even glued on which is a bonus for me as I did not have to remove any glue, however the plastic has white flocking on it. I used my fingernails to remove the flocking.
A close up of the flower with flocking removed, I know you are thinking that might be a spider or alien but not a palm tree. Just go with me for a little longer.

I also purchased some floral wire. I selected a gauge that looked like it would be about the right size for a palm tree trunk in 10mm and as a bonus might fit in the prexisting hole in the flower.

Here are some tools I used. Snippers to cut the floral wire and trim the flowers. A pin drill to make small holes in the flower, the wiring was a bit thicker than the hole and finally some hobby glue from my local hobby store.
Here I am displaying the way not to drill through plastic. Please be aware that you could drill into your fingers this way. The photo is a results of my having to hold the camera with one hand but you get the point. Carefully drill a hole in the center of the flower.
Cut the tube from the top of the flower making it flush, you could use an Exacto knife or even nail clippers.
The flower has now had a hole drilled through it and the tube removed.
Here is a photo of the flower placed on the floral wire, starting to look more like a little palm tree but seems a bit flat and bare.
To me two (2) flowers on the floral wire looks fuller and more like a palm tree. I worked the plastic a little bit to generate more of a curve to the branches instead of the flat look earlier.

I used the Captain to figure out a height for my palm trees in advance and to see if the trunks looked in scale. Close enough for me. You can purchase several different gauges of wire if you would prefer a beefier trunk. The Captain is mounted on a penny so I decided that I would make a small objective marker with the palm tree, a water well, and mount it on a similar base.
I purchased a pack of washers from a local hardware store. The washer is about 2 inches in diameter and approximately the thickness of a penny. The pack came with about 10 washers and I believe they wer about 10 cents per. The hole in the middle will serve as my well hole, however you could just fill it in with modeling clay or put a piece of tape over the hole and place your basing material on it.

I made three (3) palm trees to surround the well. I decided that a slight bend in the trunk made them look more natural and I decided to include different heights.
I placed some modeling clay along the sides of the washer and poked holes in it with the foral wire prior to baking it in the oven per the manufacturer's instructions. Modeling clay is fairly inexpensive and I got the clay from the same store as my glue.

After baking I glued the trees into place and glued some model railroad ballast in two (2) layers to build up the well. Oh no!! the new well has already attracted two (2) of the Mahdi's scouts. *On a side note the Mahdist camelry figure to the right in my opinion is one of the best sculpts I have seen from Pendraken, I can not wait to field an entire formation with them. The unpainted fig is a turbaned infantry from the same range. The figures are for scale comparison.

Next up I used water-downed PVA glue and playground sand to coat the base which helps hide the modeling clay. I also glued some paper on the bottom of the washer so that when the piece is placed on the table top that the terrain beneath would show. You need to let the sand dry overnight and then apply a second layer of water-down PVA glue on top of the sand to protect it.
Next to last step. I primed the piece black and let dry.

Painted up final. I believe the palms, although not perfect, give the impression I want for a very cheap price. they fit into scale and are easy to produce. The only nit-picky part is the top where we removed the tube but maybe I can find a way to hide it in the future, or maybe not. If anyone has some ideas for an easy fix let me know. I am going to work on modeling a water sack and rope for the well in the future.
Final pic as it would look on the table. Although not perfect the trees work as an impressionist representation of palm trees which works well with my impressionistic painting style. I hope this tutorial will help many 10mm players as palm trees are a staple in many theaters, WWII Japan, Vietnam, Colonial Sudan, Napoleon in Egypt and many others.
Up next more painted up Mahdist, a review of Howard Whitehouse's Battle in Africa book, spoiler it is flippin great and a tutorial on making a mosque in 10mm.
Captain out.....

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Captain Verbeek in 10mm

To the left is our hero, Captain Lucien Verbeek and his pinto, Teuffel, in 10mm Technicolor.

The miniature is 10mm Pendraken British officer on horse painted up as Les Captain and his faithful steed. There are a few differences between the 10mm version and the original 15mm Peter Pig mini. I have added a red sash to the pith helmet and changed the straps of the uni from from white to leather, other than that the figure is painted up fairly close to the 15mm including the captain's trademark blond goatee.

I am using non-metallic metallic painting on the 10mm Sudan figures as I believe this will not detract from the rest of the figure the way metallic paints do. I believe that Mr. Pengilley does a great job with the level of detail on these little 10mm figs and the Mahdist camel figures that I received this week are fantastic and I can not wait to paint them.

A shot of the back of the captain. I am hoping to spend a little extra time on the command figures and hope to perfect my new camera techniques soon. Reminder you can click on the photos for a blown up version of the figure. My camera can zoom in very close and shows the brush strokes and the highlight contrast fairly well.

In this shot you can see the extra pair of shoes and thrown across the front of the horse and the captains pistol holster. Very good detail but a fairly static pose, I wish the mini were a bit more animated like the Peter Pig mini but that is just my taste and I really can not complain this is a very nice sculpt. These pictures are better than the last few I have taken, however being this close up loses a little bit of the detail of the figure. From arms length this guy looks really good if I do say so myself.

Finally a longer shot showing how the captain would look from the table top. The shot also shows the Knights of the Air game box I used for the background. I used a black base-coat on the fig but have been using brown base coat on most of the Mahdist and British infantry. I hope to crank out a rub of the Mahdist this week. Looking forward to gaming colonial conflicts in 10mm and I hope you enjoy the photos.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

More Pendraken minis have arrived

My next shipment of Pendraken 10mm have arrived. I now have Mahdi Camelry, Mahdi Cavalry, more Mahdi foot, some British mounted commanders, can you say Captain Verbeek in 10mm, and a captured Krupp with Egyptian crew. I am off work tomorrow so am planning a big day of painting Sudan figures. I played a game of Colonial Adventures with my buddy Ray last weekend. Ray collects 1/72nd scale plastic men and we had a fine patrol game with the red coated British and the Zulu. Ray enjoyed the game so much that he has been diligently painting up Brits and Zulus at a feverish pace. For my contribution I am building some Zulu beehive huts. I will take some pictures as I progress. I now have a fairly sizable mob of Mahdist troops Hedendawa, Jihadiya, captured krupp, camelry and cavalry. Much painting to be done. I received a video camera for Christmas last year and took some footage of our Zulu game and some pictures. I will try and get them on here soon. Here is to much adventuring ahead, huzzah!!!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Pendraken 10mm miniatures arrived.

Below are a series of photos of my recently arrived Pendraken 10mm Sudan miniatures, British and Hedendawa. The sculpts were fairly clean and detailed. The heights of each mold are between 10-12 mm. Only one figure broke while cleaning. I bought two (2) packs of Hedendawa (Fuzzy Wuzzys) they contain 30 figures per pack in three poses. I purchased one command pack 30 figures 15 standard bearers and 15 strangely dressed Khadifs. Finally I ordered one British pack 29 soldiers in two (2) poses and one (1) captain standing. I am very happy with the figs and am planning on doing a one=ten scale. In my research so far the Mahdi's forces were organized into flags these were divided into rubs (800-1200 men, further divided into tribal sections of 100 men (centuries) each would have it's own flag and centurion to lead them. So I have cleaned and primed seven (7) 10 man units. I am priming all of the Sudan figs with a dark brown instead of my normal black and am happy with the effect. I am going to put together a post on my process for painting up the Hedendawa units. I am including one picture of the 15mm Egyptian infantry that I am not happy with and lead me to purchase the Pendraken miniatures. I also believe the 10mm figures will capture the desperation as a few british soldiers are surrounded by hundreds of Mahdist figures and will make my table top deserts feel vast. I will have to figure out this new blog system. Enjoy the pics.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Watching the Mailbox

I have not posted in a while as the adventure has been on hiatus. I received some 15mm Old Glory Egyptian troops but really don't like the way they painted up. I am my own worst critic, but something about the all white uniform and red fez, which I have difficulty painting red, have really stumped me. I have tried a couple of techniques but I am not enjoying painting the Egyptians, maybe it is the poses or perhaps just my technique but I am not feeling them. So I may paint them up slightly different as Bizerrcans. I have ordered several packs of Pendraken 10mm Sudan and have been waiting a couple of weeks now for them to arrive. I have not played any other colonial games lately but have been reading and scheming. I have been experimenting with building palm trees and terrain but am not happy with these efforts either. Who thought desert terrain would be so hard to get correct. I am hoping the Pendraken 10mm figures fit the bill. I have been drawn to 10mm figs for a while and hopefully the mass feel and level of detail will give me a fix. I will try and post some pics of various stages of modeling in a couple of days and of the new Pendraken minis when they arrive.