Wednesday, June 29, 2016

6mm Adler AWI and Scenery

I've slowly been adding models to the 6mm AWI Southern Campaign project, and while I was painting today I had the urge to set some up for a photo shoot - that is, to distract myself with an unnecessary bit of fun. I laid out some buildings and terrain and added some of the figure models, and here is the result.

The buildings are from Dave Graffam models, which I love. They come as pdf files, and many of them have lots of different texture options so you can create a variety of pieces, just by making different selections in Adobe Acrobat. You can scale them however you like, and even in 6mm they are easy to assemble and look great. I like to paint the edges to blend in, so the white card stock sides don't show, and then cover them in matt varnish to protect them and prevent shine. They are very affordable, and for the price of one digital file you can print as many as you like. They are very lightweight, but in 6mm the strength of the card makes them still pretty robust.

The roads are from Battlefield Terrain Concepts. The fences are from Paper Terrain. The trees and fields I bought from folks in the flea market at Cold Wars, but I'm afraid I've forgotten their names!

A company of the 1st Maryland marching down a country lane.

Here some troopers from the 3rd Continental Light Dragoons charge down the road.

Continentals in hunting shirts march to the fence line.

Some South Carolina militia take up position behind a fence.

And here two guns have been set up to cover the crossroads.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

36 Gun Frigate HMS Hamadryad - GHQ 1:1200

This is GHQ's model of the 36 gun frigate HMS Hamadryad.

Hamadryad was originally the Spanish-built frigate Ninfa, launched at Minorca in 1795. In April of 1797 she narrowly managed to avoid sailing directly into the clutches of the British fleet blockading Cadiz, but not without being detected. Ninfa and another frigate were pursued by the 74 gun HMS Irresistible and the 36 gun HMS Emerald, and sought to anchor in a protected bay where they expected the British ships would not follow them. They did so to no avail, however, and after a little over an hour of fighting Ninfa had struck, and the other frigate was run aground and later sunk. Ninfa was taken in to British service as HMS Hamadryad, but hers was to be a short career. On Christmas day of the very same year she foundered in a storm in Algiers bay.

Here Hamadryad is seen between a 20 gun Corvette on the left and a 32 gun Amazon-class frigate on the right.

An extreme close up - a 32 gun frigate very close on the port side

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

24 Gun Frigate - Langton Miniatures 1:1200

Sometimes through no fault of its own, a model will get buried underneath an ever-growing stack of projects, and wait far longer than their due to see completion. This is one of those long-suffering kits, a 24 gun frigate from Langton Miniatures that I bought a few years ago but for no discernible reason only now got around to completing.

This kit is available in Langton's Baltic line, and is intended to represent a 24 gun Swedish vessel. As such it comes with optional banks of oars. However there is nothing uniquely Swedish about it, and it will serve just as well as a French privateer

Using a spare part from a sail kit I cannibalized on another project, I've modeled this ship with the main course set, while the fore course is still clewed up - just to give it a little plausible but distinctive touch.

Here the frigate is seen between two other Langton models - a 10 gun schooner on the left, and a 32 gun xebec frigate on the right.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

20 Gun Corvette La Fauvette - GHQ 1:1200

Here is a 1:1200 model from GHQ of a ship with a nice claim to fame. In February of 1793, a 23 year old Napoleone di Buonaparte set sail in the 20 gun corvette La Fauvette as part of the ill-fated expedition against holdings of the Kingdom of Sardinia. The campaign brought no glory to the French (or Corsicans) but immortalized the name of a humble sixth rate ship.

I love the lines of this model. It's a sleek, low-lying ship that looks like it can pack on the speed. I have rebuilt the bowsprit from brass rods for greater strength and to add detail, and mounted the model on a resin base from Langton Miniatures, which in turn sits on top of a plastic piece and a magnetic bottom. Ratlines are photo etched brass from Langton. Rigging is nylon paintbrush bristles.

For the sake of size comparison, here the corvette is seen between a 20 gun sloop on the left and a 32 gun frigate on the right, both of them GHQ models.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Single-Masted Sloop - Langton Miniatures 1:1200

Langton Miniatures' 1:1200 Great Lakes line of models includes some fascinating small vessels, representing some of the wide variety of craft that plied those waters in the War of 1812. Here is one of those models, a single-masted sloop. In form it looks like a miniature cutter, but in power it is not much more than a large gunboat, mounting 2 guns on pivots.

Sails and ratlines are photo etched brass from Langton. Rigging is with nylon paintbrush bristles. Sea base is a metal piece from Langton.

Here the pivot guns are seen to good effect, along with the fact that the deck is not flush, but seems to be covered over with rowers' benches.

To give a sense of size, here the sloop is seen between two schooners. On the left, the 10 gun schooner from Langton's Great Lakes line. On the right, the larger 10 gun schooner from the normal Napoleonic Naval line.

Monday, February 8, 2016

10 Gun Schooner - 1:1200 Langton Miniatures

Here is yet another model of a ten gun schooner, though a larger one than the last. This is from Langton Miniatures' regular Napoleonic line of 1:1200 model ships, as opposed to the Great Lakes line - the members of the latter being rather smaller in size. See the last photo for a size comparison shot.

Schooners of every type were very common ships in the period, and vessels such as this one could have been seen anywhere the navies of the European powers sailed. With their fore-and-aft rig they would not have made as much speed as a square rigger in certain wind orientations, but they could sail faster closer to the wind, and required less crew.

To tweak this model to my liking I've sanded down the hull a lot to make it sit lower in the water, built masts and bowsprit from brass rods, and rigged with nylon paintbrush bristles. Ratlines and sea base are Langton products too.

To compare sizes, here the model is seen in between Langton's 10 gun Great Lakes schooner in the front (a very small ship indeed) and GHQ's 32 gun frigate HMS Cleopatra behind.