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Thursday 26 September 2019

Iroquois War Party - SYW

Within the batch of SYW figures that I obtained from the Eric Knowles collection was this small group of Iroquois indians by Minifigs. One figure, the pointing chap, is a Minifigs S Range item.

This was a thoroughly enjoyable project as I had not painted any 25mm native indians before and certainly not in my toy soldier gloss style.  I experimented with shades of buff and brown to create the skin tones and the various buckskin clothes and equipment, Here is the result:

Wednesday 25 September 2019

SYW Russian Line Infantry

A couple of days of poor weather has given me the opportunity to finish off a few units for the Seven Years War. These Minifigs Russian Line Infantry join the ranks of my growing number of units.

I have not painted any SYW Russians before and along with the guards, finished last week, these figures look very striking in their red and green uniforms:

Tuesday 24 September 2019

American Irregulars - Minifigs 25mm

These fgures came with a group of SYW British rangers and light infantry. I think they are intended by the manufacturer to be used in the US/Mexican campaigns, but I have painted them so that they can join my Minifigs AWI forces as US irregulars.  They were great fun to paint and make up a nice little unit.

Saturday 21 September 2019

Warrior Miniatures - Napoleonic Prussian Cuirassiers

I bought these figures on Ebay and I have repainted them. I now have two Warrior dragoon and two cuirassier regiments, and a hussar regiment. I have also painted some test infantry figures, which look quite good:

Thursday 19 September 2019

SYW Russian Guard Grenadiers

In a batch of figures, purchased as part of the Eric Knowles collection, I was intrigued by some rather odd looking figures. They are typical SYW figures, but their Russian grenadier helmets are adorned with massive plumes made from ostrich feathers. I just had to paint them.

After a bit of research I was able to work out the uniform colours and importantly what the plumes might look like. It seems officers wore white, rank and file a dark red and NCOs and musicians a combination of red and white.

The figures are by Minifigs and they join my slowly expanding SYW forces:

I have enough SYW figures to keep me going for many months, if not years. I have decided to paint a brigade size element for each major nationality, plus some of the minor states. This will quickly give me enough troops to try out some table top action.

Wednesday 11 September 2019

" Hold until relieved" - Pegasus Bridge

This battle was fought several days ago, with Phil playing the British airborne and I the Germans. The battle was taken from the Memoir '44 starter scenario, that I am sure many have played themselves.  We played it straight 'out of the box' with none of our in house rules changes:
Unfortunately for the British the card gods were very unkind limiting movement largely to the right flank. Instead of a quick rush to secure the Caen Canal Bridge, the airborne troops concentrated on the Ranville bridge, over the Orne river on the right flank.  Even this attempt ran into difficulty as the Germans lodged themselves in the woods and on the bridge itself:
More airborne troops were sent in to this battle, which raged for most of the game. Meanwhile German reserves built up in the area of the canal bridge:
Eventually, through sheer weight of numbers the Ranville bridge was captured:
But, the assault on the canal bridge never really got underway properly:
Attacks in penny packets by the British were beaten off, causing ever mounting casualties for the British:
Held up by wire, with the alert Germans in strong defensive positions, all attacks failed. The outcome was a German win with a score of 4 -2.

The bridge was not held and the British airborne were not relieved! The figures used were a mix of old Hinchliffe 20mm, assorted plastics and some MLR metal figures. A frustrating day for the the British resulting from a very poor hand of cards.

Monday 9 September 2019

Italian Infantry Brigade Group

I have been looking for some Italians to support my Airfix first series Afrika Korps and quite by chance I came across some wonderful conversions by Jeffers, which have been cast in metal by John Holt at Warrior miniatures. I am told that more figures should be on the way (I hope) in due course.  In the meantime I have sought artillery and support weapons from Ian Kay at Irregular Miniatures.

Here is an overview of the Italian forces:
The infantry are based upon the first series Airfix 8th Army figures, converted in true John Sanders style:
The command figures are by Irregular Miniatures:
As are the machine gunners:

And artillery...

The tank is by Butlers Printed Models (BPM) and is 1/87 scale. I will probably acquire a few more of these:

Tuesday 3 September 2019

Operation Express 22 July 1944 - Battle Report

Phil came to stay for a long weekend, which gave us the chance to play a couple of wargames.  His choice was WW2 and we kicked off with our version of the Battle for Maltot; when 129 Brigade attacked the village in July 1944.
Maltot had been in the centre of fighting for Hill 112 and by the time of Operation Express it was a complete ruin.  The village was occupied by elements of 272 German Infantry Division, as well as a strong point at the Chateau on the German right flank. Once the fighting began, the Germans moved units from 10th SS Panzer Division off hill 112 as reinforcements,  This included part of 102 Heavy Panzer Regiment, equipped with Tiger 1 tanks.

129 Brigade advanced with two Battalions up; 4 Wilts on the left, 5 Wilts on the right, supported by Churchill tanks from 9 RTR. The 4th Somerset Light Infantry were in reserve.

The battle kicked off with a British artillery bombardment on the forward German positions in the hedgerows:
And on Maltot itself:

4 Wilts crossed the start line and made good progress, with A Sqn 9 RTR in close support:
The artillery bombardment forced some of the Germans back and the British infantry advanced steadily; however, the Germans recovered quickly and soon fire from the hedges, with mortar fire cut down some of the British:

Meanwhile on the British right, 5 Wilts began to move forwards, again with artillery and mortar fire in support:
5 Wilts were not so fortunate as a German 75mm anti-tank gun halted B Sqn's advance, with the Churchills pulling back and the infantry came under machine gun fire. One of 5 Wilt's companies became isolated....

Bravely battles forwards through the hedges, only to run slap bang into the newly arrived SS infantry, to be destroyed:
The SS advance continued and pushed 5 Wilts back:
A tiger tank rumbles into Maltot:
On the opposite flank things are going better for 4 Wilts, who have been joined by two M10 tank destroyers. A German Pz IV is dispatched:
And the Churchills crunch through the hedges, which have been vacated by the Germans:
The M10s take out another Panzer IV :

And a third falls victim to the Churchills; however, the M10s are driven off by a Tiger, as British infantry work their way into the ruins:
 In the Centre a brisk action takes place between British infantry and the Germans in buildings and tanks; a tiger succumbs to a barrage of PIATs and grenades:
The British push on into Maltot, suffering heavy casualties, they overcome the German defenders:

At this point, the Germans reached their exhaustion point and began to withdraw.  It is a British win at 10 - 6 points.

We used Memoir '44 rules, modified with some in house amendments.  We felt that the battle ended a little prematurely, although the Germans had lost around 50% of their tanks and most of 272 Division troops. Both 4 and 5 Wilts had lost significant casualties, but 9 RTR came of fairly unscathed.