Friday, April 30, 2010

Tower & Zariba - Post #3

I made some more progress on the tower and zariba, and even on one of the gun emplacements (from several posts ago).

The Watch Tower

Here the tower has received an initial coat of medium gray paint.  I'll highlight this with lighter gray and white and also throw in some lighter brown and tan drybrushing.  The hillock still needs its terraining application applied.

The roof was constructed of a piece of 60 point cardstock and covered with a piece of white washcloth which has been painted with a watered down gray same as the rest of the tower.  The roof will receive a brown, tan, and green drybrushing to simulate vegetation covering.

The Zariba

I applied Durham's Rock Hard Water Putty to the base and then painted the whole thing Sandstone.  The vegetation was applied with Tacky glue.  I'll spray it with a diluted glue later and apply some more vegetation.

Here are two 2" sections sheltering a couple of Ral Partha British Naval landing party figures.
The Artillery Emplacement

Finally I added some interior planking and supports to one of the gun emplacements.  I'll do the same with the other two prior to applying the terraining.
All Three Pieces

Here's an overview of all three pieces.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Tower & Zariba - Post #2

I continued adding to the tower over the weekend, getting it to almost its final stage.  The only major construction left is the roof.  The following pictures show the stages of construction so far.

The sidewalls have been glued to the base and internal supports added.

Holes have been drilled for the legs and they have been temporarily mounted.  The whole structure has been temporarily placeed onto the base, which is a small hillock cut from 1/2" blue foam that is glued to a Masonite base.

Reverse of the above image showing the entrance to the tower platform.

Lower cross supports have been added to the front and rear.  The side supports are awaiting installation.

Side supports and cross bracing has now been added and the platform has been glued to the legs.

Reverse of the above image showing the ladder leading up to the entrance.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Tower & Zariba Post #1

As I continue to prepare for my June convention game (The Relief of Wadi Zoum-Zoum at the HMGS-Gulf South Bayou Wars convention in June), I have started building a watch tower for the supply base and the defensive zariba that will surround it.

So far on the tower, I've constructed the base and sides of the observation platform.

It will be 3" x 2" (~75mm x ~50mm).  The base is made from some craft sticks I've had for a while supported on some square sectioned balsa beams.  The sides will be glued down after they have finished drying.  One of my 25mm British naval officers is inspecting the platform's construction.

The zariba will be constructed in 2" sections to facilitate the game mechanics for setting it on fire, which will be the only way that the native attackers will be able to penetrate into the zariba.  For those who don't know, a zariba is a thorn enclosure designed to seriously impede passage by man or beast - a "natural" barbed wire.  My zariba's bases are large craft sticks with a section of foam core glued on perpendicular.  I'll paint it sand-colored and then glue on the material I'm using as the thorn bush.

Here are the beginnings of the zariba with a couple of Royal Marine Light Infantry posed behind two of the sections.  The idea for this construction method was from my wargaming buddy, Bill Hamilton.

More pictures to follow as the construction of both the tower and the zariba proceed apace.

Note:  Soon to be posted on the Jackson Gamer's blog (link) will be a brief report and pictures of the first play test of the scenario for The Relief of Wadi Zoum-Zoum that we conducted last Saturday (April 17).

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Artillery Emplacement

As I continue preparations for my June convention game, I needed some field fortifications for the supply post at Wadi Zoum-Zoum.  Using some of the 1/2" blue foam that I rescued from a dumpster, I created three small artillery emplacements, each capable of holding one gun and its four man crew.

I used my battery powered hot wire cutter to shape the foam and then cut out a small base of Masonite (a type of hardboard invented in my home state of Mississippi), beveling the edges with a wood rasp.  The base was spray painted with a sand camouflage color and the walls of the emplacement was painted with a sandstone color craft acrylic.  The two were then glued together with Elmer's white glue.  Good enough right now for the first play-test on Saturday, they will eventually have interior wooden slat walls and a terrain application on the outside and the "floor" of the interior.  I anticipate that I can use these for just about any period from the mid 1700s to modern times.

Here's another view from a slightly higher angle.

The Krupp gun and the Egyptian gunners are Ral Partha figures.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The Agandar's Escort

The final native unit that I require for the first play test of my convention game has now been completed.  It is a 12-figure cavalry unit using Falcon Miniatures Arab cavalry.

These stalwart "Sons of the Desert" are all veterans of the Agandar's many campaigns against the infidels.  Riding black steeds and clothed in the green of the Prophet, they will bring fear into the hearts of their foes.

Additional Note:  A comment on The Miniatures Page asked if Falcon Miniatures are still available.  Keith Astrofsky (in Massachusetts) now owns the line and his newly redesigned web site/store is Falcon Miniatures USA.  I have not bought from him yet as these were purchased many years ago at an Historicon.

Monday, April 5, 2010

March Painting Results

March was a good month for painting as I churned out three Arab units for my upcoming convention game in June:

11 Arab cavalry (22 Olley points)
40 Arab infantry (40 Olley points)

for a total of 62 Olley points.  You may see pictures of these three units by looking at the previous posts for March.  For the first quarter I've painted 187 Olley points or about 2 infantry or 1 cavalry figure per day, on average.

Although not counted since the entire units wasn't finished until today, I also painted the 12 horses for the last of the Arab units for my convention game.  I still have to prepare the "fortified" camp at Wadi Zoum-Zoum and paint some additional palm trees and another naval gun.

I will have a playtest of the game on Saturday, April 17.  You can see the first Wadi Zoum-Zoum game at our club's website:

I'll be using the same terrain boards and buildings but probably a different looking camp has it has had a chance be developed over the years since the last action there.  A report and pictures are to come.