Friday, July 3, 2015

Defending Leige 3JUL15 noon the Waterloo campaign continues....

The British have failed in their attempt to relieve Brussels and their army has dissolved into a mass of refugees and turncoats heading in a dozen different directions.

Now all that stands between chaos and order is the redoubtable Marshall Blucher and his band of plucky Prussians.


Join us at Tom's at noon the Third of July, Team Blucher needs generals that only know how to attack, if we fail Leige falls and the continent will once more suffer the ravages of the Corsican Ogre!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

4th of July Party

If you know me well enough to know where I live you are welcome to join us on the 4th of July to celebrate the birthday of our nation, Burgers, brats, dogs, and beer are provided, bring fireworks and side dishes (preferably fireworks!)

I light the fires on the BBQ at 1600hrs, if you show up early I WILL put you to work

Explosions as soon as it gets dark!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

This Saturday we will Deal with the Martians

My longtime buddy and gaming opponent, The Housemartin, has volunteered to run a game of All Quiet on the Martian Front this Saturday 27JUN15, 1900hrs. He always has a big spread and an innovative secenario.

Be There to help defend the planet!


Edit: Along with that, we'll be trying out the newest edition of Dungeons and Dragons on Friday, June 26th, starting at 7 PM.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Rigging the Pirate Sloop, The Disaster Edition

So I was working on the Pirate sloop, I have sorted out the standing rigging to my satisfaction. It looks right but leaves plenty of room to handle miniature (which is the reason for al this after all). I began working on the running rigging. On a real sailing vessels there is a complex web of lines that move the yard arms and another set controlling the sails. To make this manageable for gaming I had to severely reduce the amount of lines. I also had to keep in mind the idea that the masts will be removable from the hull for storage purposes.

This is where disaster struck. I had added some detail (a pin rail or three specifically) just to make the boat look better. The problem is that the pin-rails were glued to the hull. When I started tying the running rigging to them I neglected the idea that the mast needed to be easily removed from the hull (this after going to great lengths to ensure that the standing rigging was all detachable). I found that I had securely attached the masts to the hull via the running rigging.

I have to confess that a fair amount of swearing ensued.

The running rigging was all hacked away and is the waste basket.

Now I am back to just my standing rigging. At least the ratlines look pretty.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Rigging the Pirate Sloop

I have begun researching the rigging for the Pirate Sloop and came across this site quite honestly I find the amount of rigging on a real ship to be terrifying! A VERY LARGE amount of editing will have to take place before I can decide on the final rig. The Historical Naval Ships website is a fountain of information (OK I confess I wasted a couple of hours digging around on this site) If you are at all interested in Naval Ships take a look.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Let's Build a Pirate Sloop Rats! It's Ratlines!

I have always struggled with the balance between modeling and gaming, more so than some as I came to war gaming from scale modeling and I still feel "the urge" to add useless delicate details that add little to the value of a wargames model but satisfy my desire for it to be "just so".

Rigging on model ships is one of the sore points; none and the model looks ridiculous, the proper amount and it is unplayable. A delicate balance must be found. One of the trademark things about an old school sailing vessel was the ratlines, the rope ladders that the sailors used to climb aloft and adjust the sails. I have seen people use screening, netting and variations on gauze, some of which worked well enough in smaller scales. The problem being is that this is 28mm (heroic 28mm at that) which means that the real scale is between 1/60th and 1/48th. Far too large to even try to get away with using rabbit fencing or screening. For me at least there was but one path to follow; making it the way the real thing was done, in other words The Hard Way.

In reality it isn't nearly as bad as one would think, a bit of thought and preparation and it becomes a simple task (demanding of some careful attention but far easier than painting buttons!). As with anything that needs to be made to a regular size and shape a jig or frame is the way to go, see the picture below:

   The horizontal lines are 1/2" apart, the posts are arts and crafts spools purchased at Hobby Lobby and the board is just a bit of scrap plywood I had lying about the workshop, for a single-use you could easily use heavy cardboard as your backer and push-pins for the posts. The lower row of posts are the ends of the ratlines that tie into the dead-eyes (more of which in a later post) the two top posts are the ends that attach to the mast or crow's nest. As I am going to be making at least five sets of ratlines I opted for a sturdy  set up and glued everything solidly in place.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Rigging Plans, Sloop, Brig and Brigantine

     I worked up some simplistic rigging plans for three types of ship; a sloop, a brig and a brigantine. All of these can legitimately be built using the Pirate Sloop hull. I plan on building one of each, just to keep my fleet from looking like they were built on a production line.

   We start with my sketch of the hull;

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Let's Build a Pirate Sloop Side Note Rigging Information

I have been working on rigging plans for a sloop, a schooner, a brigantine, a brig and a ship but it is taking time. This link will give anybody who is in a dead rush to get on with their model some food for thought.

More can be had here as well.

I will begin posting my drawings as soon as I get them into a satisfactory state.

Anybody with a model in hand and in progress please email me pictures and I will post them to the blog.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Let's Build a Pirate Sloop Part V Darker Paths.........

    Several people had expressed concerns about the sturdiness of the blue board, I find a couple of coats of latex house paint is more than enough to stabilize the surface against all but the clumsiest fellow gamers. Still, there are ways to make the surface more resistant to damage; auto body filler or Durham's Water Putty instead of the wallboard compound will result in a tougher surface. Another approach that I often use is the cover the model in cardstock and wood glue. This got me to thinking that I should examine just how practical it would be to use on a sailing ship rather than an ironclad.
At dfirst I just thought of covering the model with sheets of the cardstock, but, on further consideration, I decided to plank the model with strips of cardstock.

Madness, you say! But what a wonderful madness it is!


simple tools, but set to a dark and insane purpose they look sinister indeed

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Let's Build a Pirate Sloop Part IV Complexion Issues

If your model has a nice smooth finish, or you are going to use my other method of cover hulls (index card and glue see here for an example of how I approach that technique) you can skip this step and move on to the next.

she sure is pretty with her upper works installed
and the hull lightly sanded to even off the rough bits

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Let's Build a Pirate Sloop Part III Upperworks

Having got the hull in order let us turn our attentions to the shape and style of the upperworks. With wide range of time and the different local traditions of construction you have vast latitude when it come top your choice for the model's upperworks. At a very basic level you could put a low railing around the stern and forecastles and call it a day, at the other extreme you have the option for fully enclosing both castles. I will show you both and you can decide. Let us begin.

the straight ends of the first model seemed too plain so I grabbed a paint jar and traced it onto the plank that I was going to use for the side of the sterncastle


Monday, May 25, 2015

Let's Build a Pirate Sloop Part II

Thus step we will see real progress to a completed boat with the attachment of the castles and the long planks that form the sides of the hull;

that is if I don't burn myself horribly with the hot-glue gun
(don't ask, we have a long adversarial is ugly)