Thursday, November 26, 2020

Coloured WW2 and Modern smoke markers

 Making WW2 Smoke markers

Terrain Tuesday

Since lock down began here in France I have been concentrating predominantly on my medieval and ancients collection painting over 600 28mm miniatures. This coming week I am shifting my focus back to ww2.

I was recently on John Bonds blog looking at his lovely ww2 terrain. So I have also decided to make from now on "Tuesdays Terrain day", making terrain or tabletop scatter a priority each week to get through the tonnes of small projects I have in my head for ww2 and modern bits, predominantly though for ww2. Most of these pieces will take several days and possibly weeks, but spending a dedicated day on them will help me get through the list.  

For year and years of ww2 and modern gaming I have just used cotton wool or lounge stuffing that is white for smoke markers, and while watching Band of Brothers...again, I watched the scene at the ferry crossing and thought....I do not use coloured smoke in my games...I have just used white smoke markers, but as we know they were mostly coloured for  ww2 and moderns warfare. 

Anyone who served in the military will know they are not particularly good for your health, but neither is getting shot! The smoke delivery could be via a grenade, mortar or artillery round, or a smoke generator either vehicle or a pump (normally white/grey though) the main colours available were, Red, Blue, Green, Purple, yellow, white, plus pink and  Orange (both post ww2)

So I have put together a simple tutorial.

Step 1 :Lounge stuffing is my choice of product, easy to find and cheap.

Step 2: I selected my colours and made up a wash, with a drop of detergent to break the surface tension of the stuffing and allow colour to penetrate. A few drops of paint 10% to 90% water. Dropped in the pieces that were teased out to shape. 

Step three. Rinse with water, to get rid of any settled pigment otherwise they will shed bits. allow to dry. 

Step 4. I based mine on clear plastic with a hot glue gun. 

Step 5. Put them on the table ! 


Quite happy with the result, but  I think it would be faster to use a spray paint tin in the desired colour or a airbrush, plus the colour will be more vibrant,  I will try again soon on another Tuesday! 



Friday, October 30, 2020

Sword Beach Reloaded!

Sword Beach Reloaded Rapid Fire

Due to Covid we thought we would have no Holidays this year, a fellow wargamer and saviour came along, Paul and Stella offering us to holiday with then down south in the Massif Central on the edge of the Alps. Paul and I have similar collections in the same scales 28mm Napoleonic, Ancients and 20mm WW2 and use the same rules, I guess we have chatted on forums over the last 15 years or so, but had never met face to face. 

I think Paul’s collection of 28mm Napoleonic collection eclipses mine by quite a lot and you will find him regularly posting on General de Brigade and Rapid Fire forums. We decided to conduct a Sword Beach game using the Rapid Fire rules from the D-Day scenario book. Paul has a huge collection of ships, including large destroyers down to the landing craft and support ships, and a lovely table set up for D-day landing scenarios plus the specific funnies for the landing along with the Sherman DD tanks, and the normal French villages etc. 

I elected to be the attacking Brits and Paul the defending Germans. The scenario calls for the capture and destruction of three of the bunkers and hard points along the beach plus one inland, a very tough ask. 

the start line!

The landing begins

The initial landings go bad with a lot of the leading tanks hitting land mines and either destroyed or heavy damaged. 

some of the landing craft are also hit with artillery on the way in

another heavy damage.......the story of the game for me lots of 1s and 2s rolled

half of the DD tanks made it ashore only to be brewed up by the AT guns

A second vehicle pushes pas the first only to hit another mine!

I managed to get all of my landing craft ashore unscathed but the unloading of the funnies was problematic with each one hitting a mine and being disabled or hit while still on the boats in the counter battery artillery fire. In the end only one made it up the beach. The Shermans wading ashore three were swamped and three made it ashore, all either getting taken out by mines or AT fire not a good start!  

Next turn Paul makes sure of the funnies destroying the heavy damaged ones with AT was one of those days.........

the infantry make it ashore relatively unscathed

On the left I land two companies to take on the left bunker complex

On the right another two companies, these guys do get cut up a little in the crossfire

 The infantry stormed ashore and surprising took very light casualties, however the remaining tanks were all knocked out except one which i leave covered by the other two tanks and await support

more infantry reinforce the right, plus some support elements arrive including the naval landing party arty observors 

 Again I lose the supporting tanks to mines!

but the infantry clear the trenches and with grenades destroy most of the hard positions by the 5th turn on the right

murder in the centre, most of two companies are cut down by MG and artillery fire, I managed to get one tank forward with a bridge alsmost making the wall.....

landing party is ashore finally radio contact and shelling begins....although very few targets

The commandos arrive !

the commandoes make short work of the position, fabulous grenade work again clears the way

meanwhile a patrol boat moves in for close fire support

Finally we clear the right, at this stage we call it a draw, I am in control of the beach, but failed to have enough turns to capture the inland bunkers, still a good game, we nearly restarted in the fifth turn as I had lost all of my armour by then except one vehicle........a great time never the less.

I have never really been a fan of actual D-DAY landing games, but really enjoyed this, it really was a spectacle. Paul is planning a visit to mine place in the spring to play either on my Pegasus Bridge table or Arnhem...or something else ......we shall see!



Thursday, October 15, 2020

Building Boom 8

This week clearing my desk of part finished ww2 buildings and touching up damaged ones from our move to France, about thirty odd resin buildings were damaged in the move only two really were knocked around a lot. This railway shed was painted quite poorly when I purchased at a yard sale around ten years ago and after vusiting Paul on Holidays I seen his completed one so I decided to add it to the painting line up. I finished it on Monday and had a chance today to photograph it. It does need some scatter railway pieces near the door which needs to be completed. Really happy with my result.
This completed piece was a gift from a wargaming mate Philipe for my upcoming ww2 city destroyed table for my crossing the Mayenne river scenario, a welcome addition.
At the end of the month my focus will completly move to WW2 for a while as I need to complete some more pieces for my lofty goals for this year. cheers matt

Sunday, September 6, 2020

Salon de Guerre/Wargames Room renovation IV

Today I started to add the Moloton (wall fabric underlay) and the 18th century reproduced fabric for the walls. Nessa commenced the restoration of the chandelier which was completed this afternoon.

Really happy with the 18th century reproduction fabric and how it looks with the gold and grey/white walls. Tomorrow I will erect the chandelier and complete the fabric on the 5x2 m wall.