Sunday, November 24, 2013

8 Gun Schooner - GHQ 1:1200

Another type of vessel seen in abundance on the waters of the Great Lakes during the War of 1812, in the forces of both sides, is the schooner. These small, fore-and-aft rigged craft were fast and maneuverable, and relatively inexpensive, as far as warships go. This model carries an armament of 8 guns - not a terribly formidable broadside, but it'll do in a pinch.

As usual, I've raised the model just very slightly on some thin plastic sheet. I've also replaced not only the bowsprit but also the two masts with brass rods to add strength. That made it much easier to keep the rigging taut - I've used monofilament nylon thread again. The model sits on a metal base from Langton, with plastic and a magnetic layer under that. The shrouds/ratlines are Langton photo-etched brass.

 Here's a size comparison shot showing the schooner next to two other GHQ models. To the left is a 14 gun cutter, and behind them is the 32 gun frigate HMS Cleopatra.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

1-Gun Gunboats: Langton Miniatures 1:1200

One of my gaming ambitions is to be able to fight out the Flying Colors Great Lakes campaign, and for that I am going to need a range of ships. I'll need a few 6th rates, some brigs and schooners, and especially a lot of gunboats. Both sides in the War of 1812 produced large numbers of gunboats - and why not? They were comparatively cheap, they were maneuverable, and doctrinally they were very much in fashion at the time. For better or worse...

Fortunately Langton Miniatures makes a great selection of these diminutive craft, offering a variety of rigs and armaments. Here are two, small one-gun craft, which come in the sailed and rowed variety. I've gone ahead and added a mast and spar to the rowed one as well, because I liked the look and so that it can also serve as a model of a sailed boat as well.

These are great little kits that don't require much assembly and, of course, paint up rather quickly. I've replaced the white metal masts that came in the kit with brass rod to improve strength, I've used nylon paintbrush bristles for the rigging, so that I didn't have to tie off and keep any tension in the line, and I've created a sea base around the rowed model, which has a little bit of a base cast as the same piece with the hull. I wanted it to sit on the same size base as the other, one that is large enough to pick up easily. The water for that one is just built up out of Elmers wood filler, notched and painted. It's a bit rough, but when it's one in a flotilla it won't stand out.

Scroll down to the bottom of the post for a size comparison shot to see how small these craft are.

Here for the sake of size comparison is a shot of the two gunboats next to a GHQ Miniatures 32 gun frigate, HMS Cleopatra.