Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Goodbye to 2013

Just a few hours left of 2013 to reflect on the year that was.

The big anniversary was of course Leipzig, 1813. This image, in the Public Domain, captures the high drama of the Battle of the Nations.

Husaren Völkerschlacht bei Leipzig

This was a big year for Horse and Musket, one in which I reached 35,067 page views and posted 111 entries.

Napoleonics are clearly the most read posts, with the top 5 being:

7eme Regiment de Hussards   #556 
Kurassier Regiment von Zastrow  #535 
Regiment de Chevaux-Legers Lanciers   #528
Austrians at Leipzig   #455
More Austrians at Leipzig #430

However this was a year in which I reported on my many gaming and collecting interests. 

My Seven Years War Collection was featured in many photographic essays on a regiment-by-regiment basis. I re-based every one of my SYW units to "Maurice" standards and using thick Litko bases, a real labour of love.

My mid-year fascination with the Lace Wars was overtaken by a new ACW collection, starting with the 144th Pennsylvania Zouaves and then followed by Wings of Glory. Wings of Glory led to a retro search for Wings of War. 

Throughout the year, my abiding interest in Napoleonics saw expression in the addition of new units of Austrians and Saxons and a review of some of my earlier units. The von Zastrow's are some of the finest miniatures in my collection

September saw the passing of Donald Featherstone with many tributes across the wargaming world.

Some excellent Craft Days were held throughout the year, mostly featuring Commands and Colors and, lately, Wings of Glory, with a brief but intense foray into the Age of Sail with the Close Action game system. Will and Jeff were, as always, great gaming companions.

I was happy to rediscover "War and Peace" during the summer, listening to the unabridged reading from Audible by the incomparable Frederick Davidson and watching several movie versions.

2014 will no doubt be devoted to much research on the outbreak of the Great War in August 1914 and to Napoleon's last desperate battles on the French frontier in 1814.  I am also expecting to increase my ACW collection and add a few units to the SYWs and Napoleonics. I am hoping to NOT undertake any new collections in 2014 as I approach retirement and the complete filling up of my display cases. I do hope to actually enjoy some interesting wargames with the many new game systems released recently, including Maurice, Longstreet and others.

Thank you to my readers for your encouragement and advise. Happy collecting, painting and gaming in 2014. And Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Ingolstadt Bavarian Army Museum: Völkerschlacht bei Leipzig 1813

On July 8, 2009 my wife and I visited the Bavarian Army Museum in Ingolstadt. The museum is housed in the beautiful Neuen Schloss.

Neuen Schloss, Ingolstadt

One of the finest dioramas in the museum is of the Battle of Leipzig, 1813.

Die Völkerschlacht bei Leipzig vom 16. bis 19. Oktober 1813 

Monday, December 23, 2013

A9 Cruiser Tank Mk I and A10 Cruiser Tank Mk II.

I have just heard from Neil Burt at Troop of Shewe that my A9 and A10 tanks for my Queen's Bays project are ready to ship. These images are from the extensive gallery Neil always posts to document his work.

The 28mm models are from Warlord Games.

A10 Cruiser Tank Mk II,   "B" Squadron HQ ,  Queen's Bays 

A9 Cruiser Tank Mk I Regimental HQ Squadron, Queen's Bays

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Friedrichshafen G-III: the Model

As indicated in my earlier post, I'm trying my hand at the Reviresco paper/metal model of the Friederichsahfen G-III. Here is a photo of work-in-process:

For me, this is really difficult. I have not made a 1/144 model ever and my last 1/72nd plastic Airfix model was probably 45 years ago.

So what I have learned so far is:

1. Cut with an Exacto Knife, new blade, on a cutting mat against a small steel ruler. Do not try using scissors.
2. The curve of the airfoil wing is very difficult to achieve in this scale. Fortunately the model it is so small that older eyes may not notice.
3. I am using white glue. Let it sit awhile to get a bit tackier before trying to glue the paper parts together.

I have no idea if I will finish this model or abandon the project. I'm looking at this as a learning experience. It was very clever of the makers of Wings of Glory/Wings of War (currently Ares) to make their aircraft in plastic, ready painted and ready to go. If gamers had to make all their airplanes out of kits, I doubt this very successful franchise would ever have launched! As it is, I have a lot of WofW/WofG planes. Now I can add a few specials...maybe.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Battle of Aspern-Essling (21-22 May 1809): the Battle of Aspern-Essling Diorama

In the Granary Museum in Essling is a large diorama of the Battle of Aspern-Essling, stretching from the Church at Aspern to the Granary in Essling. It was hard to photograph since it was very dark in the museum and the diorama is in a huge glass case.

Unlike many dioramas in Europe, this one features "round" figures (Vollfiguren) not flats (Flachfiguren).

The photos are in no particular order. I just circled the diorama taking numerous photos from different angles, not sure if any would turn out. I present them in their unadulterated state!

Be sure to plan ahead if you would like to gain access to both museums. I think the trip across Lobau Island to see the battlefield  was very worthwhile, despite all the wonderful attractions of Vienna.