Wednesday, 25 February 2009
Readers of a nervous disposition please take note that no Dixon 'pumpkin heads' will feature in this blog.
I've just received an email from Tradition announcing further reworked/converted and remastered Suren 30mm 18th century figures - a few French and the first of the Prussians. The 'Gentlemen' set above is my favourite. Whether David Wilson has been able to match Suren's standards i can't say as i haven't seen any of the reworked figures in the flesh, but if i had the time and money (the new sets work out at about £1.50 per figure) for a SYW project i suspect i'd choose the Willie range.
Sunday, 22 February 2009
As promised we have the first of the Peter Gilder penned painting guides - this one from the 1972 Hinchliffe catalogue. This comes to us courtesy of Clive (the 'Old Metal Detector' himself) as i am far too young to posses a catalogue from 1972.
The booklet on 'Painting Wargame Figures and Armies' that PG wrote for Mil Mod in 1981 will follow when i figure out how to host PDFs on the blog.
Thursday, 19 February 2009
With so many off the shelf structures available i wonder how many people scratch build these days..? By nature i'm a scratch builder but i have to admit that all of the buildings for my current projects are resin or plastic kits. That said, i hope to have a go at replicating Gilder's Chew House (as seen in Curt Johnson's 'Battles of the American Revolution') at some point soon...ish.
Tuesday, 17 February 2009
One of the intentions i have for the blog is to host various painting and modelling articles by Peter Gilder. Matt's comment on my previous post has nudged me to look out a short article on basing from the 1976 Hinchliffe Handbook. It's essentially the method i still use although i have substituted coir broom bristles for sisal string.
I have a couple of different Gilder painting guides and hints on model making to post in due course.
Sunday, 15 February 2009
The Culpeper Minutemen are one of my favourite AWI units, i'm not sure why - perhaps it's the green hunting shirts, their name, or their uncompromising slogan, but regardless they have featured in all of my AWI collections over the years.
The current incarnation features 18 standard Hinchliffe castings. I was tired of painting riflemen at the time, and luckily could find no record of them putting more than 200 men in the field, so i felt i could stop at 18 figures (my main interest is replaying historic actions so i rarely paint more figures for a unit than i need to replay the particular battle that i am interested in). Ideally i like to animate or convert a few figures in a unit to add a little interest to each one - i find firing poses hard to alter so i copped out this time and only tweaked one of the officers.
Incidentally, a cunning substitution of the command stand turns them into the 1st Continental Rifles c.1776.
Wednesday, 11 February 2009
One thing that really impressed me about these figures is the quality of the hand painted flags - the brushwork is superb. Whilst the style and quality of figure painting varies the flags are universally excellent.
The Gilder ECW are in serious need of dusting off, sorting out, and some restoration (ouch! sorry..). So until i get my act together the blog will concentrate on the AWI for a while.
Monday, 9 February 2009
Surens are currently available from Spencer Smith and Tradition. Beware though - some of the moulds are in bad shape, so be prepared to do a fair bit of clean-up. The end result is worth it i think. The good news is that Tradition are in the process of remastering and extending the Suren range.
Wednesday, 4 February 2009
Genius is not a word i use lightly (and does seem rather silly when talking about toy soldiers), however, i believe it is merited when discussing the work of the late Steve Hezzlewood. Hezzlewood's work for Hinchliffe and then his own Pax Britannica and Echelon Design ranges is at the very top of the tree. He's right up there with Charles Stadden when it comes to replicating the human form in a practical wargaming miniature, and capturing the essence of the 18th century soldier. If you can see past the rather clumsy painting above i hope you'll appreciate what i mean.
Hezzlewood's work is still available from Ian Hinds at Hinchliffe (X range AWI, and ACW..i think?), and from DPC in the States. Even with the tumbling exchange rate Hezzlewood's SYW figures from DPC remain one of the the bargains of the hobby.
At the moment i have scandalously few Hezzlewoods in my collection. Washington's Lifeguard (Hinchliffe X Range figures) is in the painting queue and so should (baby and work allowing) appear in the coming weeks.