Sunday, 30 November 2008

Saturday, 16 August 2008

Mother Russia is waiting...

A Jager anxious to poke some holes into some convenient Frenchman.

Recently I've been working steadily on my French army; but the Russians, while on the back-burner, have certainly not been forgotten.

As with Jean Crapaud and his chums, I have decided to go the two-rank deep basing method as per General de Brigade rules. As many of my Russians are in advancing pose with levelled musket (see photo above), this means I have been cleaning the flash from some figures advancing at the port arms position that will make up the second rank.

The new basing system can be seen
here. There will be about seven figures to a company, each stand having a 60mm frontage and a depth of 50mm. This is a little deeper than my French battalions which are 45mm deep. The Front Rank Russians are a little "bulkier" and need the extra space. Doesn't make any difference to game play- the depths are grossly out of scale as it is!

Note that the elite company will be split into two platoons, with the tirailleur platoon on the left, and the grenadier platoon (carabinier for jagers) platoon on the right flank of the regiment. This rather nicely places the flags in the centre of the unit when in line.

Once I finished the targets I set myself for August, the next step will include Russian infantry- a battalion of line and one of jagers most likely.

Sunday, 1 June 2008

Progress. Slow, but Progress...

Officer of 38th Jagers in very much campaign wear! One of a number of Foundry minis in an otherwise Front Rank collection. He's not as "bug eyed" in real life as he seems to be in this shot!

Progress of sorts, anyway. I have been steadily daubing paint on my Russians (and French!) these last few weeks, namely because I have learned how much easier it is to start with a black undercoat! I have always used white or grey in the past, but I am finding that black actually suits my painting style better, and I was actually rather pleased with the results I have been getting. I did need stronger lighting over the painting table, though.

My collection is not all Front Rank miniatures; I broke down some time ago and ordered some of their Russian command figures for variety, this despite their almost piratical postage rates to the Far East (and which compared badly with just about every other manufacturer out there- grrr...).

Now these are Perry-designed miniatures, so nice design and detail throughout. They are larger than The Foundry's range of French, and while the Front Rank figures are a mite taller, these are certainly compatible even when mixed in the same unit.

The biggest disappointment was the casting quality, or lack thereof. The moulds have been allowed to deteriorate far more than should be acceptable, especially given the premium rates that The Foundry charges. This manifested itself in drums and scabbards, etc. that had not come out completely and which required some major work with epoxy putty to repair.

I very much doubt I'll be troubling with further orders from these guys.

Now having said that, I am happy with the extra variety they lend my Russian army, notably the officers, and especially the greatcoated drummers and standard bearers, something Front Rank never covered. What between them and the conversions I have been carrying out on a few of the Front Rank minis, I can add something "different" to each battalion.

Picture taken with my new 5-megapixel cellphone digital camera. Green and blue remain difficult colours to get right, though. I need to experiment more with the settings and lighting.

Monday, 25 February 2008

A new look & some improvements

Russian Drum Major-(after Viskovatov)

It has been an age since I last posted, but I have been distracted by other projects. It seems I really do have the attention span of a moth suffering from Alzheimer's.

Anyway, I have been tuning up my blog, now that I have learned how to produce decent headers and to link music files.  The result can be seen here.

Musically speaking, Here are three marches now using MP3 format so you should be able to just press the button and have the martial splendours of St. Petersburg waft through your speakers.

"The Fall of Paris" was actually a parody of the French Revolutionary song, "Ca Ira".

This one is from the movie "Gettysburg", but it was originally written to celebrate the victory of the Allies as they overthrew Napoleon's regime in 1814.

The famous
Preobrazhenskoi Guard Regimental March. is rather special for me, as it was also the slow march of my father's old regiment, the Royal Marines.

March of the Semionovskoi Guard Regiment is one of my favourites- it just has that stately cadence which I have always imagined Russian soldiers would be goose-stepping to.