Thursday, 1 June 2017

More inspiration!

I know that I did have a copy of the Airfix Magazine Guide 28 'The English Civil War' years ago, but I'm damned if I can find it now! In searching I came across both the Napoleonic title and the ACW title but not the one I was looking for. A quick search on Amazon produced a copy for a couple of quid so I ordered it with a few reservations about condition, but it arrived in absolute mint condition. It's great to have it back again in my collection. Aside from the general information on the armies, equipment and training/drill it contains an account of a battle played to WRG rules and well illustrated with lots of b/w photos. 'Little Pottering' is an attempt by a mobile Royalist force to capture a Parliamentarian  wagon train containing gunpowder and gold coin as it progresses from a small village at one end of the table (Little Pottering) towards the safety of  Puddleby at the other. It's a small game, around 1150 points per side, but features all of the troop types common in the war, so we have regiments of Foot and Horse along with commanded musketeers, artillery and clubmen, 'firelocks' of the artillery train guard and dragoons etc. It lists the armies used in the game with points values and it struck me that good starting point for this project would be to build around these forces with the same mix of troop types for variety.





'DC' of unfashionably shiny fame pointed me in the direction of Andy Copestakes blog (he of Old Glory), as Andy had bought much of Doug's vintage Hinchliffe ECW collection, including many once owned by Peter Gilder, and (I think) Duncan Macfarlane (?). A search on Andy's blog under the ECW label produced more inspiration in the way of images of those old figures. I will build a blog list here related to Hinchliffe ECW range, but meantime here is an image from his blog that really touched me, a cover of the brilliant 'Battle' magazine (October 1978) with the original Hinchliffe figures now in Andy's collection featured on it! I'm sure he won't mind me linking this image here as it is so relevant to this project.

Image borrowed from 'Glorious Little Soldiers'.
As my family are spending a few days in Brighton this week I'm taking the opportunity to get some serious painting time in, and have really cracked on with the first of the Horse units. I hope to complete 20 cavalry figures and 20 horses before the weekend, that's two ten figure units. I'm actually almost there, just ten more horses to go before basing them up to WRG rules. Again I'm delighted with the crisp castings that paint up so well. I feel more enthusiastic about painting than I have for several years and I'm just going to keep on going whenever I get the opportunity.

A sneak preview of some of the painted horse, a mix figure codes that I will outline in my next post when they are all finished and based. I'll introduce more varied horse shades as I paint the next 10 horses today.








7 comments:

  1. Cavalry have come out really well, I remember that airfix book I got as I had the 54mm airfix figures and I wanted to convert them and it's a nice concise history of the war. I was taken with the little black and white pictures at the back and I remember the sunken road, I think it's what got me into wargaming in the end. Nice post.
    Best Iain

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    1. It's a great little book and certainly had a big influence upon me too.

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  2. That sounds like a really good starting point Lee. Looking forward to seeing this cone to fruition.

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  3. Really splendid, 'Lee. Those castings look much better than when Hinchliffe was issuing them in the early 80s. The flash and frequent mould misalignment was appalling.

    After a couple of months struggling with the WRG set, my mate and I reverted to Bruce Quarrie's ultra simple "PSL Guide to Wargaming" rules, which made for a much more satisfying game. I never came across the Airfix set. I must look out for a copy!

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    1. Matt, thank you for the comments. I recall when the Hinchliffe and connoisseur ranges fell into a state of neglect around that time, as I recall Peter Gilder had passed production onto his son and the quality fell right off, miscasts, one legged figures, cannon wheels with spokes missing, chunks of flash, I really don't know what happened but it was quite sudden and I stopped buying them. Ian Hind has recently re moulded the entire ECW range and seems to be working through others at the moment (the SYW range has been remoulded and he's working through the Napoleonics), certainly these castings are crisp and shiny with no trace of flash, just the odd casting worm around the base as you would expect. I'm really impressed with the results.

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  4. Ian, I feel extremely enthused about this project.

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  5. The Airfix booklet is a little gem, I picked one up recently when I was on holiday in Kent

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I have disabled comment moderation as I was losing losing some genuine comments to my Spam folder. I shall see how this goes.