Picking up those brushes again.

Hi and welcome to the occasional mutterings of Dave Doc, a military modeller and some time gamer. Gaming and model making has given me a real education, History & Geography(obvious really), Artistry, Politics, Economics, Logistics, Project Management -you try building miniature armies without the last 3.

I will use the blog to record my creations & the odd occasion I actually do some gaming.

I have always been inspired by the aesthetic side of gaming. Playing on well constructed terrain using excellently painted units is always a joy.

Monday 30 May 2016

A little R&R - Ypres

Mrs D and I spent the last weekend at Ypres, where we have been many times over the years. Despite a dodgy weather forecast Ypres met us with glorious weather. We made our usual pilgrimage to the Menin Gate and had a pleasant walk along the ramparts to one of the most beautiful CWGC cemeteries "Ramparts Cemetery" located next to the Lille Gate.

We attended the Last Post Ceremony once more.  Hearing  the bugles playing "The Last Post" , followed by a choir singing "Keep the Home Fires Burning" was certainly an emotional moment.

If you visit Ypres I can recommend the Ariane Hotel. Comfortable rooms, an excellent bar and restaurant, parking and a 5 minute walk to main square.

Sobering to think they ran out of spaces on the construction for soldiers without a know grave around the salient, there are 55,000 recorded on it.. The rest from 1917 on are recorded at Tyne Cot cemetery.

The Cloth Hall building. Rebuilt between the wars 

An enjoyable weekend.

Sunday 29 May 2016

Curt's tribute... Corporal Docherty , Sergeant Millsy and the Shovel of Doom

While at Partizan with Curt we exchanged gifts in relation to last years painting challenge - I handed over the Curtgeld figure - and Curt presented me with a fine set - Sergeant Millsy and Corporal Docherty - started by the ongoing banter between myself and Millsy . I have a feeling that the adventures of the daring pair may well be on again this next year..

you read more of the adventures from the last challenge here

This pair will be venturing into the Sands of the Sudan shortly..

They are a great little vignette, and wonderful memory of the last Challenge - most appreciated Curt!

Thursday 26 May 2016

Sudan - Highland Skirmishers, Commanders and Mahdist guns

After the last play test it highlighted a few items I wanted to add, some specific highlander skirmishers and some Mahdist captured Krupp guns - and a Gatling gun - or perhaps more correctly that shoud be called "Where the hell did they get that from!"

Black Watch company in skirmish order - Connoisseur Miniatures
Time to flush out the bad guys...

Also a few spare Naval Brigade figures from Connoissuer made into a skirmish order. I like these as they have the Sennet hats

Connoissuer Minatures

A command set - complete with commander in full dress regalia! - no idea who made that - it was just in the lead pile.

and the gunnery arm for the Mahdists. Enough so i can run a few games simultaneously and each have some.

Tuesday 24 May 2016

Partizan - A good day out.

Sunday saw the run down to Partizan. I only ever attended the one at Kelham Hall twice - and one of those was held in the tent, but the new venue seem ideal. It bright and spacious and good parking. Things were well set up with signs for the various areas, and traders you could get to easily. I arrived in the car park just before noon .. and spookily as i was getting out of my car a vehicle pulled up tooting its horn... I looked up to Sydney and Curt and Sarah had just arrived. Excellent timing. We walked straight in to a lively looking show with a good buzz about it.

I am finding the social side of attending shows is the main highlight - it was great to have a catch up with people we have mostly virtual interactions with. It was a quick whizz around to look at what was on offer , and then meet up with the blogging contingent at 1pm - thanks must go to Stumpy von Amos and PK to helping set up the first one at Partizan.

Bloggers ready to talk shop

We discussed the usual stuff, things done, plans for projects, some new ideas for the next Painting Challenge and just enjoyed ourselves in general

Curt and Sarah , over from Canada starting their European tour

Yours Truly on camera duty - courtesy of Tamsin

The hand of god? No its just Ian Willey showing of his pike blocks!

I was very struck with the overall quality of the games that been laid on - there had been some real effort put in. The Grimsby clubs large games were superb in their scale and detail - a real testament to long term commitment. - So here is a selection of some favourites


Simon Miller - sporting the laurel leaf head dress

The Man who would be king game

Minions racing!

Very British Civil War

The stash consisted of more for the Sudan, Naval Brigade , Egyptian Gun, and Command set and casualty pack - well the lead mountain has been shrinking lately you know.

 Bits and bobs from Ainsty
 New colonial era book

 and the new gangster rules - so I can see what i might like to  use in my own set up

Somewhere I also have a set of Time Bandit miniatures from Northumbrian Tin Soldier , and a set of Andrea colour flesh paints too - but forgot to photograph them!

 After the meet up and further run around the trader and games - a few of us headed into Newark for vittals..and found just what needed in the Prince Rupert on Stodman Street.

Sydney R, Curt, Sarah , D and behind the camera Tamsin..

The organisation seemed to work well, I got all I wanted from traders - someone selling Sarissa stuff would have been nice. Having people doing painting demos etc is also a nice touch. The faux fire alarm evac part way could have been a bit of an issue , but was resolved quickly - although with day job head on - building should have evacuated !

All in all a great day out - and nice break from the usual routine..

Friday 13 May 2016

Sudan - Naval Brigade extras

Good progress has been made on adding in some more bits for the Naval Brigade.

All ready for a dust up!

I have added an extra gun and limber set - this time mule powered.

 Mules and limber by Tiger Miniatures, Figures are Perry, Gun by Bicorne

2 sets of open order skirmishers , and one of closed order.

A couple of deployed limber sets again by Tiger Miniatures

Been a very good productive week ... time for more Mounted Mahdists next ..

Monday 9 May 2016

Sudan - Civilians, Young Winston , and various WIP.

Work is continuing at reasonable place on the outstanding bits. First up is a set of European ladies on camels.  These will be useful scenario distraction I think.

Figures are by "Hinterland Miniatures" - Camel Train

Also Young Winston makes an appearance. Thanks again Simon Miller.

I have also started work on another Naval Brigade gun team, this time to be pulled by a mule team, a very nice set from Tiger Miniatures (with an order turn round time of 48 hours - well done). All the various traces have been made from the usual garden twisty wire , and soldered to  the limber and harnesses.

Also a couple of other separate limber sets and another 18 Naval Brigade foot all prepared, along with all the outstanding Mahdist Camel and Baggara Cavalry. The desk is nicely full

And finally a warm weekend saw work on the 12 x 6 desert mat which will be used for a few upcoming games.

Still needs some lighter highlights and a little tidying up. But its getting there.

So overall it has been a very busy week!