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.

Tuesday 31 December 2019

Out with the old , in with the new . Happy New Year

Well that’s 2019 about done, so it’s time for a traditional round up and future plans. But let’s start with wishing you all a happy , healthy and prosperous New Year.

2019 has very much been a year of two halves. The first 6 months saw a lot of gaming and creative activity. My AHPC IX came in on target at 1500 points in March 19. This then rolled into adding stuff to be able to run a Utah beach game which was a great itch scratched . It does however need some extras and tweaks and they are firmly on the 2020 to do list . It’s also booked in for another run out out on the 7th of June.


Some of the extras are more LST’s. LCMs, deep wading kit and dozer Sherman’s , more assault infantry , more Paras , more Germans , more flooded areas. Then it will be a roll onto the battles for the Merderet. I am looking forward to that . My 15mm US ETO is coming along nicely , certainly over half done.

I also managed another weekend runout for the Sudan at Marks  WHC

Ready , aim , Fire!

It will be back again in April 2020

The back half of 2019 was side swiped with an invitation to use my Sudan collection to help a film company with a documentary. This was a rare opportunity which was great to be involved in. I could not have done this without my able accomplices James and Martin ..thanks guys

Set creators at work!
I created a lot of extra items for this set up ...there really isn’t much left to do for the Sudan now.
It was epic
Studios de Paris.. oh yes this was cool 

As for 2020 , my plans include the following:-

Book in some regular gaming slots. Done until June 
Restart the Battle of Britain campaign with Pete 

6mm terrain bits . 

10mm ACW to fill out my Union army, and top up the CSA.

15mm WW2 . Finish filling out the Normandy US armies . 
                        Add more Germans for Normandy, FJ, company and support ,  Panzer Lehr and static division items .
                        Start the late war US items . 

15mm WW2 , terrain items . 

28mm Sudan add some more bits . 

Shows :-
Hammerhead - in March with the For Joshua game 
Salute - in April — just maybe 
Partizan in May 
Partizan in October 
Battleground , Stockton , November..

Anyway , that’s it written down!

Wishing you all a very Happy New Year !

Saturday 28 December 2019

AHPC - entry 1 -10mm Barbarians

I have managed to get my first post of the Challenge done, and for me its a really important one. This is part of the "For Joshua" project set up by JamesM..  The link to the project can be found here , and the link the James' video is here.  This is a very noble cause and if you have not seen it - its worth a visit. 

Along with a number of our local gamers and people around the world we are doing what we are good at, to help out the charity that helped James and Amy at their worst of times.

So here I give you my contribution which is a Barbarian horde .. now bear in  mind I don't generally do "spear chucking" this is a little out of the normal for me . The figures by Pendraken were all very crisply cast and were easy to paint. Leon from Penraken has graciously contributed some free figures to the project too - thanks mate.

I will drop these off with James to add to the project shortly . With luck we will have  enough for a game at Hammerhead in March.

well that's the start of the winter waiting season. I intend to work on the small scale stuff first this year . Next up 6mm buildings and 10mm ACW. 

Sunday 15 December 2019

Countdown to AHPC X

Well it is very nearly time to wield the brushes in anger .  I have done a fair bit of prep work , and if things progress well will have to do a bit more toward the end I think .

I am doing Wednesday minion duties , and have set a challenge for painting camels!

So if your taking part have fun. If not enjoy watching everyone’s progress

So her is the prepared pile so far ..

10mm fantasy and 28mm oddballs 

6mm terrain and 10mm ACW 

15mm US vehicles 

German armour 

15mm buildings and bridge 
 Let’s see how much damage this gets eh..

Saturday 30 November 2019

Battleground 2019.

Today saw the final show of the season, and also my local one - Battleground , at Stockton on Tees. It’s a great show , which Leon from Pendraken has been working hard to keep alive and then improve . It has a decent range of traders , and the  bring and buy was pretty good too.

As it’s our local show the guys from the Old Guard Group had decided to put on something new. Stu has been leading on driving the building of the 28mm WW2 Western Desert forces . Due to various other commitments over the last few months I wasn’t able to do any of the forces , but I was of course able to supply a lot of desert themed terrain from my Sudan stuff .

So here are a few shots of the action.

 Rules were Bolt action .

The Brits are dug in defending a battie box atop the hill with a force of Italians and Africa Korps attacking.

By the end of the day although the AK has been atop the hill they had lost their armour and the British still had a pair of Matildas that were about to wreak havoc, so it was callled a British victory 

It was certainly busy late morning 
I really liked the table next us , which was a Mediterranean game of the attack on Leros, look ace

As for stash, given I went without a shopping list it turned into some left field stuff 

This is all John and Andy from Ainsty’s fault // Bas@@@ds...
So then it some extra bits for Gaslands , templates , dice, markers and weapons kits. There was then some Crooked Dice Banana Splits ATVs etc. I also picked up some pre planned 10mm ACW and !0mm Fantasy stuff (for James’ project)/ 

Then the bring & buy produced this large wooden castle .. it was picked up for £20. It will be given a bit of a tart up and will be used for grandson Harry’s Birthday next year along with some soldiers .... see what I did there ...

All in all a grand day 

Then when I got home . My long awaited .. ie nearly 3 months Battlefront order turned up .. given my 15mm WW2 forces stash some serious top up 

So , I think I can truly say the stash mountain has been topped up - ready for the winter season already .

Sunday 17 November 2019

WIP - Winter painting season plans .

It’s been a fairly hectic back half of the year. The painting and modelling that has been completed was focussed on getting stuff done for the film shoot in Paris. This has made though a decent dent in the Sudan lead/plastic mountain - there really isn’t that much left that I want ( and I sure don’t need) to do.

I have given the cave a decent sort out and the preparation and paint desk are ready for some serious production . The AHPC paint challenge will be kicking off in just over a months time so it’s time to get ready.

I do like  a clean desk , but it’s a rare occurrence ! It won’t last long 

It’s been a poor few months for gaming , but that should straighten out now with no real commitments over the next few months

Plans for the winter ( in nothing but scale order ) are :-

1/300th Team Yankee , terrain items . Ruined buildings etc
1/300th Cruel Seas , 2 Fairmile MGB , and with luck a full size destroyer

10mm Fantasy units to contribute to JamesM “For Joshua” project
10mm ACW , Confederate and Union , a brigade of each , plus bits n bobs

15mm WW2 terrain , more Normandy buildings and large bridge
15mm WW2 USA , specific items for D Day games (bulldozers , wading tanks etc)
15mm WW2 USA , 101 AB round out of the stuff I have
15mm WW2 USA , Infantry units
15mm WW2 USA , 82AB company
15mm WW2 , German , Panzer Lehr Tank units
15mm WW2 , German , Grenadier unit.

28mm. Sudan , British . 36 Figure Infantry . KOSLI
28mm. Sudan , Egyptian/Sudanese 48 Figure infantry, gendarmes
28mm Sudan, Beja , about 100 figured
28mm terrain , for Necromunda

Well that looks pretty busy ,...and of course no plan survives first contact. Though at present nothing else is piquing the interest, well maybe something horse and musket related but who knows. Certainly all of that won’t get completed , but with a fair wind there will be some decent damage to it.

On a side note . I have been enjoying the latest “Setting the Scene’  book by Pat Smith . All good sound technique , and well photographed. Plus some extras from Nick aka Molterie .. all good stuff. Recommend.

Saturday 9 November 2019

Sudan - Something a bit different . Making Movies

As the title says , it’s been an interesting week. A little while ago I was contacted by a film company enquiring if I could assist with shooting scenes in miniature for the battle of Omdurman. After some too-ing and froing on the practicalities it came to fruition this last week. There were of course some compromises to be made as this was 1898 , not earlier in the Sudan . The artistic intention was to show the real mass of the native forces against the might of Victorian firepower and its ultimate effects . 

Omdurman was a very on sided battle with around 50 British dead , versus 12,000 of the Kalifas forces . It was real imposition of European ways into Africa .

The camp and Zariba 
We used around 20kg of two types of sand to ensure all the bases were properly concealed, plus we mixed in two blends of green scatter and bit of clump foliage to break things up. We were using 1/2 & 1 inch brushes to ensure the sand was spread around and blended in and cleared off the figures ... mindi am still finding sand in things!

The mass advances toward the Zariba 
The Cameron’s man the Zariba 

Cavalry advances 

I had previously added in some specifics for 1898 , particularly the maxim guns , and a powerful steamer . 

The first full set up . 

The cavalry charge 

The gunboat brings its firepower to bear .

And now some behind the scenes shots

Studios des Paris - we were in studio 7 . The studio was set up by Luc Besson , yes him of Leon..

The cavern that was studio 7 .. ready for the crew to set up. lighting and camera

Myself , MartinC and JamesM setting up under the lights .. 

Due to issues with camera wobble we had to change the set up to a lower table .. that kept us busy..
The blue screens are to provide background for post CGI processing to add back ground later. The camera was set up.

Camera set for aerial shots 
Benjamin steers the camera - Rolling...


We had to rearrange and reset as the director and cinematographer asked for things to be moved, filled out etc .We also had some license to set up and call out any issues we saw. 
Setting up scenes .

Damn.. I think corporal Jones needs moving a 1/4 of an inch.... myself and Martin dealing with fine details 

Overall it was a great experience and a real behind the scenes look at the craft and graft required to make the stuff we see on our screens .

My thanks must go to James (his post is here ) and Martin without who’s help and friendship this  would not have been possible ... cheers guys . 

We don’t know when it will air , likely to be years  - it may never get off the cutting room floor .. - but hopefully it will . 

Monday 21 October 2019

Sudan - Steamer and Egyptian Battallion

The latest additions completed . First up is the third steamer for the flotilla . It’s based on bits from a resin Grand Manner stern wheel one I picked up a while ago. I built new superstructure from foam board, plasticard and also some printed card bits I had designed using PowerPoint.  It is to represent a vessel from later in the period and has some heavier weapons , a ,12lb , 3lb and 2 maxim guns - these were all sourced from HLBS - nice pieces. I have made it so  the various flags and ensigns are swappable.

the sailors are a pack I had from Pulp Miniatures- very nice sculpts . I also think this one will see duty on some pulp games I am sure.

Next a 48 figure unit for the Egyptian Army . All Perry figures . Just 1 left to do of these now

I just need to do a last sort through the Sudan lead pile boxes to see what I have left to do - its much reduced at least!