Wednesday, 21 July 2021

Barrage Miniatures modular terrain part 2

 A little later than promised but I set a 6’x4’ table out using the box of terrain I bought in the recent Kickstarter.

Still learning how to use this terrain effectively but I think it has loads of potential and I believe Carla is going to make some larger green/grassy areas which will  prove extremely useful.

I hope these pictures just show a little of what can be achieved and how effective it can look.






Sunday, 18 July 2021

Sunday paint desk

 In between the heat and the gardening managed to get a few pieces moved on, the 25th Sempils Foot were based and textured as were another 6 Georgia scouts.

So a big push on the Government army for the 45 is underway


Of course I also started on the Ratnik civilians trying to keep colours muted for the majority but really enjoying painting them.







I’ve also been playing around with the Battleground terrain and shall put some photos up later.

Keep safe

Thursday, 8 July 2021

Modular Terrain

 Earlier this year I took the plunge and backed Barrage Miniatures Kickstarter for modular terrain

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/smartscenery/modular-terrain-for-wargames

The pre coloured mats looked very interesting and I believed would be ideal for my French Indian War set up.

End of June box arrived and apart from checking contents it wasn’t until today have been to get a proper look. I still won’t have time to set up properly until after the 13th July when I’ve completed the physical transfer of stock and moulds to Caliver.

Within the Kickstarter I order the large river mat this is cloth backed and Carla at Battleground has demonstrated that you can just iron the creases out ( not tried that yet)

I like the colour !






The terrain pieces are various sizes and shapes, I bought a mix of green, sand and forest floor they’re made of what I think is thin latex rubber and are therefore extremely flexible.



You also get some smaller pieces that can serve as river banks, to create the board you simply overlap the pieces to get the desired effect, for hills Carla uses car litter in socks! I shall be using the Chinchilla sand in small bags.

I just threw a few pieces down on the dining table to give you an idea of the effect





I need a little practice but I like the effect and I think it has a lot of potential, I bought enough pieces to easily cover a 6x4.
Next week I shall try and set up a table.


Wednesday, 30 June 2021

Crann Tara miniatures marches to a new drum

 You will all be aware from previous comments that the success of Crann Tara has brought with it it's own problems for me, mainly the increasing demands on my time and also the ability to keep creating new product.

Dave Ryan the owner of Caliver Books ( https://www.caliverbooks.com) came to the rescue with an offer to buy the business and continue to take it forward, so as from the 1st July Dave/Caliver will take over the running of Crann Tara.
All orders up to the 30th will be processed by me and I ask ( if you can ) that you don't place any orders today (30th June) as a lot of work has to take place to prepare for the transition.
All my stock and moulds will be delivered to Caliver shortly but in the meantime continue to place orders as normal from the 1st and keep your eyes open as I know there are a lot of new releases coming very soon.
It has been 9 years since Crann Tara was created and it feels a bit like your child leaving home and the journey with many of you has been a good one. Thankyou for all your support and helping me develop this dream.
Finally I will still be selling Ratnik Miniatures they have gone for casting at Griffin they will be available to pre.order from my colleagues shop here https://www.gamingfigures.com/.../Ratnik-Miniatures-18th... from today.
So at last I will be able to paint more of the figures I’ve made and complete the demo games Ive had planned for the last few years.
Many thanks everyone.
If you have any questions don't hesitate to get in touch

Thursday, 24 June 2021

Refighting History volume 9 and Ratnik miniatures

 I received  my copy today of the latest in Charles Grants series of  Refighting History, published by Caliver books.

The second in the small actions series this has 8 challenging scenarios which are a great change from set piece actions. Charles uses his own rules with suitable tweaks but the actions are easily adapted for Sharpes Practice etc. Also included is a piece on the rules updates for The Wargame ( It would be nice if Caliver made this section available as a PDF).

Full of nice pictures especially showing off a lot of my figures 😁.  Worth buying.



I also received the first set of what is to be a series of 18th century civilians from Igor Karpov (Ratnik Miniatures)  these are superb. I’m also pleased to say that Igor is allowing me to get the figures cast in metal and be sold as an alternative to the resin casts. Information on pre.orders will be made available next week.










Friday, 18 June 2021

Happy Waterloo Day and more Ironclads

 Having arrived back from a few days walking in Scotland I’ve seized a few hours this afternoon to catch up on some admin etc. Whilst doing so thought I’d watch Waterloo (again) seeing it’s the anniversary.

This is the special blu ray release (picture quality very nice) which has a few extras - documentary on the making of the film ( pretty good) what I believe is an isolated music and sound effects track ( not listened to) and some other bits I’ve not checked.

There’s also a booklet which is a copy of the original brochure ( mine fell to bits years ago), a poster and lobby card prints all good stuff to remember when this was released.


Whilst this was playing I also set the printer off to print the first four CSA ironclads - left to right, front to back Albemarle, Arkansas, Atlanta and Baltic - far nicer looking than the Union ones I think 😁



Thursday, 10 June 2021

All at sea

 I always find that naval battles quite often provide a suitable diversion from large games, generally quick to set up and don’t always need a large table. I have 1/1200 and 1/600 Napoleonic ships but as with many things always on the look out for other diversions! [ not that I need them) 

Barry Hilton is shortly to release Ark Royal Miniatures a very nice range of 1/1200 scale ships for the 1650’s which reminded me I had some files made by Henry Turner and released under a Gilded Sails KS 

So thought I’d print a couple - as always not done the masts yet


On the left is a Dutch Fluyt at 1/600 and 1/1200 and on the right a Dutch 80 gun, they’d be better in resin but for what I would used them for fine in FDM.

It didn’t stop there thoughDavid Crook on his A Wargaming Odyssey blog has been making some excellent ACW ships using bits he had Martin at Warbases use for him, he’s had a couple of test games working on a set of rules by Bob Cordery with some tweaks which are looking very good. 

Again it reminded me I’d downloaded 3 sets of files from Thingiverse for ACW ships.

The first set I printed are all Union Ironclads and masts need to be done for New Ironsides but they’ve come out not bad. Again these are scaled at 1/600 but could be made larger or smaller! 

I will print a few Confederates and they should be quick to paint!



Keep safe.

Monday, 7 June 2021

On the bench

 Well thought I’d show a quick shot of the real bench and not the side bench I use for basing, finishing off etc.

I realised I hadn’t done Sempills (25th regiment) foot for my Culloden army! An extreme oversight so a unit undercoated and started.  I paint the units as a full regiment so 30+ figures in one go. That’s why there's other bits and pieces on the bench a) to break the monotony and b) to allow some shades to try before progressing.

The Newline design Nassau were pieces I’ve had for a long time and just fancied doing them - the 20mm figure really is, I think, the perfect Wargame scale in retrospect I should have done my whole range in this scale 😆


I hope to get the 25th finished over the weekend and then back to the Yorkshire hunters.
Keep safe everyone.


Friday, 4 June 2021

A Very Sad Day

 Today I was going to do an update post on my workbench then it was with disbelief and great sadness I read on the Wargames Illustrated page of the unexpected death of Duncan Macfarlane.

Like many in the hobby I have known Duncan for many years and would like to call him friend.

My first encounter with him was when he travelled with Peter Gilder to the old Redcar club to take scalps for the WRG society championship - I would have been around 17 and was confronted by Duncan’s early medieval Welsh - big units of 48 figure welsh spears - almost immovable objects. I lost as to be expected and over all the intervening years I don’t believe Duncan ever lost his keenness for competitive Wargaming. 

We met him regularly after that at various shows and from the 1980’s a lot more as Gordon, Lee and I started to put on various demo games, in fact Duncan accompanied us on our hike around Tewkesbury and over Newark for the games that were to follow.

There were many attendances at his house in Lovers Lane at Newark for photo sessions and when accompanied by a sleepover I got very little sleep as most of the night was spent browsing through his vast collection of books.

A knowledgeable, charming and disarming individual he was great company and many a social evening was spent in Newark on our visits. One one occasion when he found I was to travel to London for a conference he encouraged my to travel down the day before to catch up and have a chat. A hot day we visited a number of pubs and somehow on each one we managed to miss the serving times for food..

I don’t recall much else until 5.30 the next morning when I woke in my hotel room still fully clothed and with around an hour before I got the train to London, I managed to shower get changed and make my way for the train. I just about managed to survive the conference after drinking copious amounts of coffee and having breakfast. 

I guess in some ways he was mildly eccentric but his very nature made it all very acceptable, when he published Wargames Illustrated he somehow talked me into doing an index both by article and author and after the first 244 issues I decided enough was enough and I think he bought it off me for a couple of pints. 

And so the memories continue, Warcon, Sheffield Triples nights out and so on - his wit, was regularly missed by many and it’s so unfortunate that many gamers of today will be oblivious to the contributions and changes he has made to the hobby. Even possibly the instigator of having the hobby accepted as a mainstream pastime with the publication of Miniature Wargames.

It was a pleasure to have known him and the circle of friends to sit and tell our war stories to gets ever smaller 



Monday, 24 May 2021

Workbench Part 2

 Just a quick update after a productive weekend, reinforcements for the French Indian Wars have started being based, more militia and 2nd battalion Regiment Cambis - standards by Flags of War I just need to paint the edges 😁


Undercoated the next battalion of British Infantry - thought I’d give them a colonel in overcoat 😃


I did a little more on the Caballero miniatures resin figure and start the base - it’s a very nice piece and really shows what can be done with 3D printing.



Floating around in the background some 10mm AWI and 40mm Spanish, they’ve been claiming squatters rights for a while now so in between painting the British I will get these finished and moved on.

Saturday, 22 May 2021

Workbench Saturday

 Trying to get bits and pieces sorted and off the bench at the moment so today saw 50 highlanders bases finished - standard still to be issued.

(Sorry for the quality of the photos - poor light today)





I also pressed on doing a few conversions, managed to get the Ranger crew for the Bateaux 95% done, the French cavalry for the FIW and Swedish infantry are progressing well and tomorrow hope to finish them and do the French Marines for the bateaux 


I also undercoated a figure from Caballero Miniatures, I got a few of these for no reason other than they are wonderful sculpts and are resin printed. Unfortunately I had to sell my resin printer due to bad reactions to the resin, cleaning fluids and fumes - even with PPE! 

The pieces were printed for me by Georgios Galazoulas in Greece who holds a licence for the figures and is also a very talented painter.



I will slide the pole of the standard down to touch the base, the other pieces I will assemble and show next post, they are excellent.

Wednesday, 12 May 2021

More Saxons to the fore

 The Graf Rutowsky Cheveaux Legers are now completed and are ready to join my Saxon army.

Also finished basing a Saxon general and gave him a spare standard bearer just need to sort a standard.




Really like the red with black facings. I need at least two more regiments of Cuirassiers now for the Saxons and more infantry. However it’s back to the Culloden project and next up is Kingston’s Horse.

Whilst talking Jacobite rebellion I just received this in the post 


Bearing in mind there were 10 sieges and numerous small actions there is a lot more to the Jacobite rebellion than just the three battles constantly discussed. Really looking forward to reading this and getting more ideas for games.


Keep safe everyone.

Wednesday, 28 April 2021

New pieces from Andy Stadden

 It’s been a bit of a long wait but Andy has completed the latest set of figures. The majority have been done to accompany Stuart Insch’s next publication.

So there are Indian labourers, British Sepoys,  Havana militia and French Sepoys 

They will be off to Griffin next week and should be available in around 8 weeks.






Sunday, 18 April 2021

Marching off the bench

I managed to finish basing and issuing the colours to two units this week. Regiment Rochow for the Saxons, an actual Grenadier regiment rather than one made of of detachments from other units. 

Flags are the material ones from Maverick models and I like them a lot.


Next up is Loudon’s regiment painted by Jez from Shakespeare studios. The figures are conversions I did from other pieces in my range and are originally designed for the FIW hence the ladder lace on the cuffs which I know is wrong for the militia in the ‘45 but I just didn’t fancy carving and filing it all off so a compromise was made 😁

Flags from Flags Of War.

I have the cords to add to the standards of both units, hopefully this week.


What’s next ? Hmm decisions to be made - there’s a lot on the bench 🤣

Saturday, 10 April 2021

Playing with boats

 As part of my French Indian War range  Martin at Warbases very kindly offered to make me some Bateaux. He’s done two sizes an accurately scaled one and a Wargame friendly one as some customers stated they didn’t want to buy seated figures they just wished to stand their figures in the boats.

In addition he’s also prepared a set of four ladders to go with the assault teams I’ve had made for the range , everything should be in the shop tomorrow.