Sunday, June 23, 2013

Hurry up and wait

It turns out I can paint up a unit of 24 28mm soldiers in about a week, given my hour-a-day schedule.  These Bavarians are now officially awaiting bases.  I'm going to pick up a big pile of Litko bases at Historicon this year, so these pretzel-munchers are just going to have to wait.  In the background, you can see some assembled Perry British, who are going to be the core of my main army.  The detail in the Perry soldiers is staggering and they are far more substantial compared to the Hat Bavarians.  Still, there is something to be said for the mostly pre-assembled Hat figures, speaking as Clumsy McFumblethumbs.

Friday, June 21, 2013

At the Sign of the Jogging Pony

Ladies and Gentlemen, we have reached Bree!

As regular readers may know, I am on a quest to run across Middle-earth.  Every time I go to the gym or out for  a run, I chart my progress against the journeys of hobbits.  Since I only run a few miles at a time, and I only exercise a few times each week, the hobbits are outpacing me.  There is also a noticeable lack of Black Riders in pursuit as well.  So for now, pride is the only thing motivating me, at least until I have the One Ring in my pocket.  I'll probably make it to Rivendell late this year, and from there I'll decide whether to follow in the footsteps of Frodo or Bilbo.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Hide the pretzels! Here come the Bavarians!

Well, it took about a week, but my first unit of 28mm Bavarians is ready for basing.  You can see the second unit in the background, with most of the big color areas blocked in.  These took longer than I anticipated, and they do not allow for the shortcuts I am accustomed to taking in the smaller scales.  ("OK, this little blob of flesh will simulate the hand...")  I decided against spending any time on the faces, but I will try to render good eyes and mouths as I move on to the Perry British I have, where the sculpts seem more inviting.

I can see some areas that could use some improvement, like the collars and surcoats, but on the whole, I am pretty satisfied with my first foray into a new scale.  I still can't get used to the weight of the plastics, and even though I thought I had cleaned of all of the flash, I found lines appearing in areas I thought were clean once I had applied paint.  Some packs that I had applied securely now dangle off their owners' bodies at alarming angles.  But now that they are painted up, I can appreciate the look.  If these Hat figures are bottom of the line as far as hard plastic minis go, I can't wait to try out the Victrix and Perry.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

You may say to yourself: My God, what have I done?

So after years of snark and smug superiority, I have decided to take the plunge into plastics.  I like to experiment with a new range every summer, and this year I decided to go for 28mm Napoleonics.  I already have my 10mm guys, who are great for providing the impression of huge masses of troops, but I like the color and detail these larger guys provide.  I finally think I'm a good enough painter to do the period justice.

The main body of my army is going to be British,, but I wanted to wet my feet on these Hat Bavarians, since Bavarians are cool and I got them cheap on EBay.  They feel light and flimsy, as I expected, though the gluing went far better than I could have hoped.  I clipped off the flags, since I want to use paper flags, but my attempts to glue wire flagpoles to the stump have ended in failure this far.  Hope I didn't screw up royally.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

While the wife's away...

Mrs. Mad Doctor is away in Maryland this weekend, running a half-marathon in 90 degree heat.  As fun as that sounds, I stayed home with the kids, hit the playgrounds, and worked on reducing my pile of unpainted lead.  I bought these Old Glory 10mm Napoleonic British a few years ago to give my Austrians a break when they got tired of fighting the French.  In truth, it took about a week and a half to put together these three small brigades and their support.  I still have some Guards, Light Infantry, and Portuguese infantry to paint, as well as some Hussars.  I've said it before: 10mm gives good-looking results for a minimum investment in time, treasure, and talent.  I also took advantage of the weekend to sculpt some foam hills to capture some of that rugged Iberian terrain.

In the photo above, companies of the 60th American Rifles skirmish ahead of the main body of infantry.  The trousers in this photo look far bluer than they actually are.

Some Light Dragoons wonder if they can treat the infantry battalions as speed bumps as they rush into battle.

Massed British guns, realizing that even in a battery like this, they're still likely to lose a duel with the heavier French artillery.