Pax's Waterloo

Started by PaxImperator, October 16, 2023, 01:16:40 PM

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PaxImperator

Thanks for the tip! They have a huge assortment. Unfortunately because they're outside the EU Single Market I might be hit with all sorts of customs levies, handling charges and who knows what else if I order from them. Brexit - still the reason we can't have nice things. >:( Instead I turned to a member of my gaming club with a laser cutter who has kindly agreed to cut me some bases at a reasonable price. I'll pick them up later this month.

In other news, during the weekend I finished the next batch of five. Halfway on the way to my first fully painted battalion. It feels like the pace is gradually picking up, which is a morale boost! Next up another six regular troops and after that the six-man command group. The first half of the battalion took me slightly more than three weeks. I should be able to finish the second half in two weeks if I keep up my current pace.


Group shot, new models up front. Starting to look like an actual unit. Note the soldier with the bandaged eye front left. Characterful heads like these can be nice but if you use more than a few the repetition gets obvious very fast. For now, this soldier can rejoice in being completely unique. :)


Rear shot of four of the newly finished models. I basecoated the canteens 72.023 Electric Blue and highlighted with a 50/50 mix of Electric Blue and 72.095 Glacier Blue. Will use this method for the rest of the army. I'm tempted to revisit the numbers on the backpacks for the whole unit but in the interests of getting things done I might just have to accept them as they are now. I've not yet seen evidence for numbered backpacks in other units, which is a relief.

Guildmage Aech

Oh yes forgot about that ridicilous brexit nonsense for a moment. If someone local will sort thats probably a good shout.

Will there be artillery and cavalry coming with this project?
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PaxImperator

Why yes!

In terms of cav and arty already in my clutches, I have:

Coalition:
1 British Royal Artillery 6-pounder

French:
1 regiment of hussars
1 regiment of chasseurs à cheval

The chasseurs and gun are from the same Waterloo starter box as the British infantry infantry I've been painting. I can see why they put those in the box because it tends to force the coalition player into the defensive and their infantry into square, as happened at Waterloo. I got the hussars with plans to paint them as Dutch hussar regiment 6 but as you can see (and as I could have seen) the uniforms are too dissimilar for that. So the French will get a hussar unit they might otherwise not have gotten.

In terms of plans for more arty and cav, both the coalition and French armies will get more arty. Victrix make plastic boxed sets for both, so I'll almost certainly be picking up those. I've also been eyeing some Belgian carabiniers for their very dashing uniforms. No one makes them in plastic, but fortunately I can buy plastic French carabiniers/cuirassiers and plastic French line dragoons from the Perries. If I assemble the first box as French cuirassiers, I can use the left-over carabinier heads on the dragoons to make Belgian carabiniers out of them (uniform plates for Belgian carabiniers, French carabiniers and French cuirassiers).

For now, however, it's back to the grind of painting infantry.

Guildmage Aech

Wow, those hussars are a fancy looking bunch of dudes. I take it the historical accuracy is an important part of napoleonics?

I don't envy you painting them, my questionable skills is partly why I stick to space machines! I tried high elf cavalry once. Loved how they played, hated trying to paint a horse!
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Myen'Tal

Nice work - the canteens and the freehand numbers are so crisp! They came together well!
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PaxImperator

Quote from: Guildmage Aech on November 11, 2023, 08:11:25 PM
Wow, those hussars are a fancy looking bunch of dudes. I take it the historical accuracy is an important part of napoleonics?

They certainly do look the part! Better yet, every French hussar regiment had its own distinct uniform so I can take my pick from some of the most outrageously garish colour combinations imaginable. A big part of their appeal are the fancy uniforms, just like back in the day. Rules wise they are no different from their maligned cousins, the chasseurs à cheval.

You're right about historical accuracy being an important part of Napoleonics. It means different things to different people though. I think of researching a unit's regulation uniform as the base level for accuracy. Beyond that, all sorts of questions pop up. Do you weather the uniforms? Paint on cloth patches to show repairs (which were widespread)? Paint some items differently to represent (equally widespread) non-regulation replacement items? Use varying shades to account for historical variety in cloth and dye quality? Use models with their shako covers on or off (the latter typically being reserved for the parade ground, not the battlefield)? How much artistic licence are you willing to use in the absence of conclusive evidence? I'm on the more relaxed end of this spectrum because I value pretty uniforms and researching 19th century dyes and fabrics is not my idea of a good time. To each his own.

Quote from: Myen'Tal on November 11, 2023, 08:43:28 PM
Nice work - the canteens and the freehand numbers are so crisp! They came together well!

Thanks! You judge them more kindly than I do. I was actually considering trying transfers instead but on reflection I think I'll keep at it with the freehand for now.

I was hoping I'd be able to show you another six finished Yorkshiremen by now but because I did not have enough time, you can have this rant instead. :)



This really grinds my gears. What were you thinking, Warlord Games? Not only do I need a pin vice to put your flag poles into my standard bearers' hands, but the flag poles do not fit. The weird pointy bit doesn't fit into the standard bearer's hands, nor into the hole in the finial (see picture). I'd cut off the pointy bit but then I won't know if the pole is still long enough to fit the flag I ordered online. And why would you put a weird pointy bit on the end if it's only going to get snipped off anyway? I am disappointed, confused and dangerously close to making a circumcision joke.

I've put the command groups on hold for now while I'm eagerly awaiting the Warlord Games customer service response. (Incidentally, I just realised Warlord Games' acronym is GW in reverse. Can't be a coincidence, can it? ???)

Lachdonin

Hah, this takes me back. My first miniatures were a unit of British Redcoats i picked up from a shop called the Emperor's Bodyguard. It was right next to the home brewing supply store my father got his beer and wine making supplies from, so i wandered in there as a lad one day and was instantly taken by miniatures.

They look absolutely fantastic.
Remember, you can make yourself a Hero, but only others can make you a God.

PaxImperator

Thanks for the compliment! Do you still have those redcoats? I've very consciously kept the first miniature I ever painted even though it's not much to look at. It's a Dark Eldar warrior from the 40K 3rd Edition starter box that GW staff helped me paint to suck me into the hobby. A very good investment on their part!

In other news, back to flags. Warlord Games customer support gave me a very prompt and helpful reply: just snip off the pointy bit. It's there because the flag staff doubles as a spear in some of their other kits.

I also got my MDF bases.



I blue-tacked some of my models onto them and here they are. They're looking like a proper unit now. It's hard to tell from the picture but I added two highlights on the muskets (72.044 Dark Fleshtone followed by the same with some off-white added). The lines are there to help me drill holes for magnets and to eventually glue the models in place. According to the person I got them from, there's not even any need to seal them. He just glues on sand and paints it and hasn't had any problems. I'll give it a go too then.

For dessert here are two shots of the entire unit, including the six models I finished painting last week and the newly assembled command group.



I need to work on the lighting. The colours are truer to life in the first picture in this post.



I've held off on the backpack numbers on the last six. I think I can get more consistent results if I do all the remaining numbers in one big batch. Assembling the command group went OK. Still not on a fan of metal models but they didn't give me too much trouble.

Next up will be magnetising bases, assembling another unit and probably a start on painting that other unit and/or the command group. I wonder how many magnets I'll need per base, especially the ones with metal models.

Guildmage Aech

Looking very cool all ranked up. Are they all goong to be rifles up marching? Or will some be 'action pose' firing their guns?
(Is that sort of thing frowned upon on historial miniature wargaming?)

Oh 3rd Dark Eldar where my first army and first miniatures to paint too. The local club otherwise had 99% Space Marine players who frequently got dismayed to see all their guys sliced to bloody chunks by Incubi. Normally right after congratulating themselves for beating up an 80 point squad of warriors standing around with a sign saying "we are not bait honest!"
Ah,good times!  ;D
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The GrimSqueaker

Quote from: PaxImperator on November 20, 2023, 03:04:34 AM
In other news, back to flags. Warlord Games customer support gave me a very prompt and helpful reply: just snip off the pointy bit. It's there because the flag staff doubles as a spear in some of their other kits.

Oh, probably for lancer units. That makes sense now.

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PaxImperator

Quote from: Guildmage Aech on November 20, 2023, 02:56:47 PM
Looking very cool all ranked up. Are they all goong to be rifles up marching? Or will some be 'action pose' firing their guns?
(Is that sort of thing frowned upon on historial miniature wargaming?)

Yeah, these are the Warlord near-monopose Brits. I've got about 100 more British and French in basically this pose, all from the Warlord starter box. The biggest variation is that some are using their right arm to help support their musket. Apparently, at least in the French army, this was against regulations but officers permitted it because the regulation pose of musket stock in unsupported left hand, barrel resting on left shoulder was hard to keep up on the march. I don't mind the monotony of it because soldiers in Napoleonic line infantry units were incessantly drilled to all be doing the same thing at the same time. It was the only way to get a group of 600 armed men to maintain a close-order formation while marching cross-country without any accidents happening. They're easy for me to rank up too and for Warlord it has the advantage of being cheap to make and easy to fit on a sprue.

All that said, I've got my eyes set on these British and French infantry sets from the Perries for any future units beyond those models from the starter box. The French are still mostly monopose but the British will let me build a proper firing line out of them.

Quote from: Guildmage Aech on November 20, 2023, 02:56:47 PM
Oh 3rd Dark Eldar where my first army and first miniatures to paint too. The local club otherwise had 99% Space Marine players who frequently got dismayed to see all their guys sliced to bloody chunks by Incubi. Normally right after congratulating themselves for beating up an 80 point squad of warriors standing around with a sign saying "we are not bait honest!"
Ah,good times!  ;D

Judging by the points cost you didn't even give them splinter cannons to keep up appearances. Those must have been some gullible Space Marine players! :D

PaxImperator

To add to my reply above, action poses certainly aren't frowned upon in historical wargaming. Cavalry posed mid-charge are pretty common for example. There is probably less of a flair for the dramatic than you get in Warhammer 40K though. Napoleonics are probably worse at this than many earlier periods because of the existence of evidence of soldiers' poses in action in the form of drill manuals. Combine that with the pursuit of historical accuracy common to all historical wargaming and you get a lot of little army men posed very similarly.

Quote from: The GrimSqueaker on November 20, 2023, 03:44:36 PM
Quote from: PaxImperator on November 20, 2023, 03:04:34 AM
In other news, back to flags. Warlord Games customer support gave me a very prompt and helpful reply: just snip off the pointy bit. It's there because the flag staff doubles as a spear in some of their other kits.

Oh, probably for lancer units. That makes sense now.

Yup. They do other historical periods too like Renaissance and Roman Empire, so plenty of potential uses for pointy sticks.

In other news, I received a shipment of N45 nickle-plated neodymium magnets this week for magnetizing the bases.



I ordered 200 of them. Sounds impressive but they're tiny at only 4x1.5 mm. I borrowed the oversized pin vice from my dad because my own doesn't fit drills larger than about 2 mm.



I daresay the magnets are working! Yes, the models are in fact upside down. No 28mm Yorkshiremen were harmed in the making of this picture.



How many magnets you need depends a lot on how flush you can make them with the base. The base on the left was my first attempt, in which I unwisely used a power tool. I drilled down too deeply without even realising my error, and the result was that I had to drill a third magnet hole by hand. The pictured bases are about equally supported by their respective magnets. Both bases can comfortably support four plastic models upside down against a smooth metal surface.

Through trial and error I've arrived at the following numbers, assuming flush magnets:

  • 40x40 mm base, 4 plastic models: 2 magnets
  • 40x40 mm base, 3 plastic and 1 metal models: 3 magnets
  • 40x40 mm base, 2 plastic and 2 metal models: 3 magnets
  • 40x40 mm base, 1 plastic and 3 metal models: 4 magnets

Four magnets under one base is not ideal because you have to pull rather hard to get it unstuck. If you're not careful you risk damaging the models. I'm still happy with the results so far. The magnets should help keep the models safe during transportation.

Next up will be assembling more minis!

Lachdonin

Quote from: PaxImperator on November 20, 2023, 03:04:34 AM
Thanks for the compliment! Do you still have those redcoats? I've very consciously kept the first miniature I ever painted even though it's not much to look at.

Unfortunately not. They were at either 6mm or 10mm scale, and i never did paint them. Just red plastic to pair off against blue Napoleonic French. This was back in 1997, and they unfortunately did not survive the intervening decades. I should still have my first painted miniature around though, an Eldar Gaurdian...

Beyond that, love the shot of the lads down in Australia.
Remember, you can make yourself a Hero, but only others can make you a God.

PaxImperator

Just a small update today. I've finished magnetising the bases for the British 33rd Regiment of Foot. I also popped down to the store to buy new blue and grey paints and assembled 18 French infantry this week. I primed them and the 33rd Foot's command models in between showers today. It's been raining something awful here this past month.



An uneasy truce at the priming station. British on the left and French on the right very awkwardly avoiding eye contact.

I'm rather looking forward to painting the French infantry. I still have a 24-hour wait till the primer has properly dried. The French greatcoats should be much faster and easier to paint than the British uniform jackets. I'll go for a hodgepodge of drab greys and browns to highlight the problems the French were having with sourcing uniforms. Some soldiers by 1815 were actually wearing civilian clothes under their greatcoats due to uniform shortages. These issues are also evident from some of the men wearing forage caps rather than the prescribed shakos. The most glamorous part of the Napoleonic age this was not.

Myen'Tal

Can we get some more history lessons to some of these units you're fielding  :)! Looking good!
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PaxImperator

#35
Quote from: Myen'Tal on November 29, 2023, 08:50:17 PM
Can we get some more history lessons to some of these units you're fielding  :)! Looking good!

Cheers! I'll be happy to oblige in future posts. For now though, I only have time for a short update before I run off to work.



Meet Pierre. He's the first of several models I'm testing my colour scheme on. I'm rather pleased with the khaki greatcoat so there will be more Frenchmen dressed like him. The next Pierre will have a greatcoat in blueish grey, I think. Keeping the backpack separate worked quite well too, although there is less need for it with the French because their backpacks don't block access to their collars. The British backpacks were giving me problems in this regard because they have rolled-up greatcoats/blankets on top of them.

EDIT: It should go without saying but Pierre's still WiP obviously.

Also a quick flag update: I received some fancy printed flags for St. Nicholas Day that were sadly too big for the flag poles the Warlord Games models came with. Drat. Off I trot to buy some brass rods then... Let's hope I can pry off the super glued flag poles without damaging the models.

Lachdonin

#36
Dude, i love the colour of that greatcoat.

Edited to remove a sentence that breaches forum rule 4a - Iris.
Remember, you can make yourself a Hero, but only others can make you a God.

Myen'Tal

I agree, nice color palette on that guy!
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PaxImperator

Thanks guys! The khaki greatcoat is my favourite so far. I painted three more test models.



You've seen this guy before, but now he's almost done. That forage cap he's wearing is called a pokalem. Not very stylish or protective, but good for keeping your head warm. They have flaps on the sides and back to keep the wearer's cheeks, ears and neck warm. The flaps on this soldier's pokalem are folded up. Here are some life-sized reproductions for your viewing pleasure. Apparently they were originally Hungarian and were first introduced in the French army in 1769, only for their use to be discontinued in 1789, then reintroduced with the 1812 Bardin uniform regulations. Whenever you see a pokalem, it's a safe bet that you're looking at a French soldier from the late Napoleonic wars.

I eagerly await this forum's water container experts' opinion as to whether the thing on his left waist should properly be called a canteen or a water bottle. :)



I tried a different palette with soldier no. 2 here. The brown looks too dark to my eyes, especially compared to the greatcoat. I think I won't use the brown again on these minis. I'm not sure about the grey on the greatcoat. Perhaps it's a bit too bright? The rear shot gives a good view of the cowhide backpack. In the interests of my own sanity, I decided that these guys' backpacks would be sourced from plain brown cows rather than brown and white.



Soldier no. 3 here has apparently 'liberated' some onions from a Belgian farmer's larder. I rather like these little touches by Warlord Games' sculptors. A close look at his lower abdomen reveals he must be in breach of the 1812 uniform regulations. The white trousers conform to the uniform regulations but above them you can see a single line of buttons. These must belong to his waistcoat. The waistcoat would be showing when worn in combination with a pre-1812 uniform jacket. An 1812 uniform jacket, however, would fully cover the waistcoat. So our guy here must be wearing an old uniform jacket or none at all.



Finally, another colour test. Not bad but in my opinion not as visually interesting as the khaki and bluish grey greatcoats of the others. I'm going to mix and match all colours within a unit to spice things up.



Finally a group shot. Colours used from left to right:
Shako cover: 1. N/A 2. 72.040 Leather Brown 3. 72.061 Khaki 4. 70.862 Black Grey highlighted with 70.836 London Grey
Greatcoat: 1. 72.061 Khaki 2. 72.102 Steel Grey 3. 72.048 Sombre Grey 4. 72.050 Cold Grey

So what do you think? I'm especially curious about your opinions on the colours I used on soldier no. 2.

PaxImperator

Since it's a bit quiet in here, have a work-in-progress shot of my french boys. :D



After the four test models I've been busily brushing away at these fourteen models. I've decided against painting any more light blue greatcoats for now because the colour looked too bright to me. So for this batch it'll be three different colours for the greatcoats and five different colours for the shako covers. They've been fun to paint, if a bit slow.

The headless model is the first step in fixing a mistake I made. He's from one of his battalion's two elite companies, as can be seen from his epaulettes. I'd accidentally put a regular head on his shoulders, which I'll replace with an elite head soon. The elite guys have moustaches and their shakos have pompons the shape of a barber brush instead of the flat disk-like pompons.

I've been contemplating army painter speed paints or quick shades to speed up my painting process. I'd really like to be churning these guys out faster. The local gaming store is still closed until mid-January though so I'll complete this batch using my current process. Any differences in appearance probably won't be noticeable given the variety of colours I'm already using.

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