I should have been at Borodino!

Yesterday I should have been making my way back home from Wellington after taking part in a refight of the battle of Borodino. Instead, here I am at home like the rest of you wondering what to paint next. Needless to say because of the effect of the NZ lockdown we didn’t travel to Martinborough last Wednesday for a day or two of wine tasting, to be  followed by a weekend in Wellington with a collection of NZ wargamers playing Borodino.

I’m not the only disappointed gamer as highlighted here by Terry, one of the main organisers https://terrysgaragegaming.wordpress.com/2020/03/27/lockdown-report-4/ .

I’d done quite a bit of painting for the event but my efforts were minimal compared to the work that others had done in organising this massive refight, as highlighted in Terry’s thread. So instead of a battle report I thought I’d put up some pictures of some of my 28mm Russian and Duchy of Warsaw Napoleonics.

I was to play Poniatowski – I suppose that at least gives me the time to familiarise myself with the Black Powder rules chosen for the game. Unlike my chosen rules General d’Armee, the guys use 24 figure battalions and  cavalry regiments of 12 figures whereas mine are configured to 32 figure battalions for Russians and 36 figures for the DOW and French and 24 man (and horse!) cavalry regiments

My Russian army is growing ever so slowly, I’ve added 2 infantry battalions in the past week bringing me up to a total 10 infantry battalions (6 Perry Miniatures and 4 Warlord games). The Jaeger unit, one of the two latest painted units below was obviously on the receiving end of that artillery fire in the picture above: –

Here are the Warlord Games Russian infantry and a foot battery

At the moment I only have 2 units of light cavalry finished but a unit each of Russian Cuirassiers, dragoons and Uhlans are undercoated and waiting their turn in the painting queue, maybe I’ll get them done in time for the rearranged refight


Regrettably there seem to be a dearth of command figures available in the Perry range, I’ll need to get some more from somewhere

By contrast, my Duchy of Warsaw figures are almost exclusively from the lovely Murawski Miniatures range. I think I have enough now, with total of 8 x 36 Line Battalions and 2 from the Vistula Legion range

The horse teams are Perry Miniatures borrowed from my French army but I’ve recently added an horse artillery battery to the Foot battery I painted a few years ago

On the right wing, the Chasseurs and Krakus are ready to pounce….

While on the left the Lancers and Hussars see an opportunity to charge home

And that’s just about it except for the new command figures

Is this where I confess that I also have another Poniatowski figure base by Front Rank!

At the moment I don’t think I can face painting another 28mm Russian battalion, I need a change, ideally I also need to buy more Russian infantry but on the other hand I’ve half a mind to add a small Prussian force instead. Now there’s a thought!

So what do I paint next? SYW Austrians? 15mm AB Young Guard, 15mm Russian Napoleonics or do I start on the FIW Muskets and Tomahawks figures I got in the Northstar kick-starter. I know I’m all over the place painting wise but my painting productivity is dependent on variety. Choices eh?

Best wishes to all, stay safe in these difficult times, and remember no wargames opponents from outside your bubble unless that is you reckon you can keep them on the other side of a wargames table that’s at least 2 metres wide!


Posted in 28mm Napoleonics, Murawski Miniatures, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments

Off the Workbench

I felt I needed a change from painting recently so decided to make a few terrain bits again with the main aim to finish some fields. I’d picked up some tufts at Partizan almost 2 years ago, I can’t recall from which company and wanted to make some wheat fields. I also bought some 1omm tufts from Warlord Games and thought they’d make some reasonable crop fields. I’d bought some wide pieces of Neoprene for this and pinned them down

Originally I’d intended to just use  Neoprene for these but hit on the idea of using theses Peel and Stick vinyl tiles. A friend of mine had made a few roads with them and I thought I’d do the same

In the past I’ve made roads from Neoprene with its flexible nature allowing the roads to follow contours. That can’t be done with Vinyl tiles, they have to be flat but I’ve never found making roads so easy and made several metres in no time by cutting them in half along their long axis making roads 75mm wide and  up to 90 cms long. The beauty of this is that there’s no messing around with PVA initially, just peel off the backing and dip in the sand

Once their dry its just a matter of painting, dry brushing and then adding the flock and putting them in the sun to dry

As far as the fields go I think these are passable for crop fields. I suppose I just found the Warlord tufts to be quite uniform and hence somewhat limited.

Still not a bad result or little work

Oi what do you think you’re playing at?

Posted in On the workbench, Wargaming Terrain | 6 Comments

A few photos on a sunny day

Christmas is coming and the goose is getting fat – and as it happens so am I! Inevitably in NZ With Christmas approaching this means that the sun comes out and there’s a chance to take photographs. Consequently yesterday I managed to take a few photographs of figures whose bases I finally managed to finish – these were the subject of my last WIP post.

Lately I seem to struggle taking photographs and now generally do this outside but to be honest I often find its too sunny (with apologies to my UK mates!) and I don’t get good results. The last lot I tried 2 weeks ago were unusable. Yesterday I got lucky and consequently some of the shots are reasonable. Cloudy days would seem to be best but I usually find the cloud cover clears once I’ve set up and ready to snap.

As an aside, and perhaps with more frustration I also struggle with the lighting in the wargames room and would be grateful for any practical advice as this seems to be too dark to take decent pictures . Consequently for a Christmas present I’ve asked Mrs VB to buy me some sort of lighting that I hope will mean I can manage more easily and get better results taking photos inside. If you have any tips or pointers I’m all ears

Well here we go. Perry Russian Mounted Jaeger take on the 13th and 10th Duchy of Warsaw Hussars from Murawski Miniatures whilst the infantry look on……

Some Crusader SYW cavalry

Prussian Cuirassiers and an Hussar regiment take on Austrian Dragoons and Cuirassiers

So its back to the workbench and to date I have 2 battalions of Prussia AB reservists painted with a 3rd waiting in the wings. I’m not sure what to paint once this final 3rd battalion is completed, more Russian 28mm Napoleonic infantry I think rather than some 15mm AB French Young Guard

Posted in 28mm Napoleonics, Murawski Miniatures, Seven Years War | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

I haven’t been lazy – More Work in Progress

I’ve been quiet but I haven’t been lazy , honest though have been distracted by the Rugby World Cup, or that’s my excuse.

I have been lumbering my way through another load of cavalry, this time Prussian and Austrian SYW cavalry from Crusader Miniatures along with Russian Napoleonic Mounted Jaeger by Perry Miniatures. Just the basing to finish now.




Then there’s the small matter of my last 2 battalions of Murawski Miniatures Duchy of Warsaw  infantry and the 13th DOW Hussars. Just 12 more figures to go now to be painted as the 10th DOW Hussars .

This now leaves me free to buy a Horse battery and a unit of Chasseurs ready for a Borodino refight in Wellington NZ in March.

Think I might go the easy route next and paint some AB 15mm Prussian reservists

Unfortunately all this horseflesh means that my bright idea to have  a “fight night” once per week and play a solo game have not moved on and the armies  set up at least 2 months ago remain in their original start position!

Posted in On the workbench | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

Yet Another Diversion – Samurai

I have to ask what I’m doing again when I was supposed to be painting some ECW figures or was it 28mm SYW figures or was it Russian Napoleonics! At what about those 15mm AB Young Guard figures I just bought!

The reason? A Feudal Japan group build suggested on one of my favourite forums the Outpost https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/theoutpost/discussion/all

This is where I have to confess that the leadpile contains Samurai figures in 40mm by Steve Barber /www.stevebarbermodels.com/50-40mm-armoured-samurai, 28mm by Perry Miniatures and 15mm from Two Dragoons Production. These have been languishing there for years –

The Steve Barber Models purchase came about as a result of seeing what I think I recall was a Penarth and District Wargames club had a demo game on at a wargames show. I moved to NZ in 1999 and I’m not sure if I bought these just before or on a return visit to the UK a few years later. These are really nice models to paint but the 4 Samurai Armoured foot and the Samurai Cavalryman in the just about did my head in. My main focus was to get them finished, but without a deadline to meet I could have taken more time and been more diligent in the painting as any minor error really shows up in this size. As it was I was laid low by a flu like illness and was unable to work for a few days. I still feel rotten even now but had I not had time off work through the illness I would never have got them finished!

The last of the Steve barber Models is a mounted Samurai. I put this together and it hung around in various boxes for years and the horses tail broke off. The first thing I had to do was greenstuff and epoxy this back one – conversions are not my strongpoint I’m afraid!

As I handled the figure to take pictures I kept rubbing the paint off and had to retouch it more than once and only after I started taking photos did I notice I hadn’t painted the  cast on grass on the base. Now I don’t normally varnish but because of this it was the first thing I did after taking the photos

Next the 28mm from Perry miniatures. I bought a few packs more than 10 years ago, the intention was that my younger son would paint these up and sell in order to get some pocket money but alas he never got a round to painting more than 1 figure

Again not being sure what I’ll do with these I decided to base them somewhat temporarily on some Warbases multi-bases I bought a few years ago but that were found to be too small for their intended use with dark Age figures

I suppose that just leaves me with the Two Dragoons 15mm Figures. I suppose its a bit of a surprise that these are still breathing and not squashed flat as they’ve been at the bottom of the leadpile for the best part of 15 years I think. I bought them after being tempted by the collection of a Wellington Gamer that I saw on the net years ago. Wish I could still see them as I could do with the inspiration again

They look a bit small in comparison but hopefully that means that these Red Devils will turn out to be quick


Posted in On the workbench, Samurai | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Oh Look Shiny – yet another new project and other bits

Will I ever learn? No matter how many times I tell myself I have more than enough to do and despite the fact that I already seem to have several large projects on the go in 28mm Napoleonics, 28mm SYW and 28mm Italian wars I’ve now started a 28mm ECW collection

I blame the internet and more specifically Empress Miniatures! I’ve always loved their ECW  https://www.empressminiatures.com/english-civil-war-3-c.asp range and up to now have managed to avoid buying any. However a few months ago I found myself in possession of some cash that I won at golf and thought that spending this on wargames figures was a more appropriate reward than something golf related. This coupled with a visit to Partizan last year where I was captivated by Simon Millar’s For King and Parliament rules and game which weakened, nay, abolished my resolve!



Consequently having bought a 3 Regiment Brigade deal from Empress, the rules and bases from Simon along with flags from Flags of War https://www.flagsofwar.com/index.php?route=common/home I now somewhat shamefacedly present my efforts ( my shame face is because I’ve bought even more since and made the units bigger with 12 pike, 6 command and around 20 Musketeers!)

Firstly Sir Allen Apsley’s Regiment of Foot


The second unit is Anthony Thelwell’s regiment of Foot

Why these 2 Regiments? I just like the look of the flags! Painting on a 3rd Regiment is currently underway, these will be Sir Edward Stradling’s Regiment of Foot and so far the Pikemen are finished.

I’ve really enjoyed painting these, Empress seem to take paint nicely and suit my painting style. The only off putting thing I found was attaching the swords as I found it rather fiddly

Not content with just that? OK then, a few other things have rolled off the workbench

This 15mm Russian Church from Hovels – took me only a short time to paint

I also painted up some of their 28mm and 15mm walls, the 28s are in the pictures above and then  finally nine  WWI British Cavalry from Footsore Miniatures https://footsoreminiatures.co.uk/collections/ww1-early-war-british

These are currently out of production but I bought them when there was a sale on some time ago (I sound like my wife now!) and intend to use them for my VBCW games

Not a bad turn out I suppose in the past 2 months considering I’ve been playing golf on most Saturdays and Sundays since my last post.

Not sure what I’ll tackle next, either some Empress ECW cavalry or some 15mm Prussian Napoleonic Reservists


Posted in ECW, On the workbench | Tagged , , , | 12 Comments

The Great Wargames Room clean up

I’ve not been that productive in the paint department of late but I have at last managed to finish the 28mm Perry Russian Hussars whose horses I painted some time ago

Here they are – the Izumy Hussar Regiment

I also had a change from painting white Austrian SYW uniforms by painting these Grenz by Crusader as the Banal-Grenzinfanteriereigiment Nr 1


At the moment, rather perhaps stupidly, I have begun a new period 28mm ECW and bought some figures from Empress Miniatures. This is a test figure

The figures are very slender compared to other 28mm figures I’ve painted but do seem to take paint nicely. I suspect that this means I will end up having a break from painting Napoleonic and SYW figures, thereby stalling progress in these projects by being side tracked by the “Oh shiny” effect! I’m really looking forward to painting the cavalry


The other distraction was the need to re-arrange my wargames room. I did this because one of my display cases was in the NZ sun for a few hours early in the day and I felt that they would inevitably fade. This meant emptying both display cabinets and the cupboard and swapping their positions around. I think the photos give an idea of the size of the task, it took me the best part of 5 or 6 evenings and reminded me how much lead I and plastic I seem to have acquired over the years. I’ve also vowed to sell off some figures and have a good clear out of some old wargames magazines but I’ll do that at a later date


Whilst doing this I decided to move my Dark age figures out of the cabinets having bought a metal filling cabinet with 15 drawers

For those in NZ you might be interested by this link


I’m going to have to trim the odd spear or standard as the drawers won’t quite take a spear or standard height of greater than 70mm! Again I think that will have to wait

One unforeseen effect of the new drawer unit is now the spare no of storage boxes I have again! I’ll have to paint faster so I can refill them again with painted figures! I think I must be a hoarder though, that Kickers box in one of the above photos must be at least 30 year old – oddly enough it contains an unfinished card model of Hougoument!

Posted in 28mm Napoleonics, On the workbench, Seven Years War, Wargames Room | Tagged , | 15 Comments