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.

Thursday 24 December 2020

Merry Christmas 2020.

 Well it’s getting near the end of this “unusual” year - and i will be glad to see see the end if it. Here is to 2021 taking a more positive trajectory. 

Personally it’s been a fraught and sometimes challenging year . 2021 has some light at the end of the tunnel from a few sources.

Whatever Covid restrictions you are under stay safe.

Wednesday 2 December 2020

WW2 Late War. Big Cats

 I continue to clear off the paint table lurkers in advance of this years painting challenge . This time it’s a couple of late war items . King Tiger and JagdTiger . I wanted to do something a bit different so went for the ambush scheme . 

I have also completed a panzer grenadier platoon , and 80mm and 120mm mortar units for the start of of an upcoming Fallschirmjager force too. Pics another time . 

I have a Napoleonic unit to complete for Jason , the 40th Foot , which is under way at the moment as well. 
Anyway just a short update. 

Saturday 14 November 2020

Musings - Going bigger - something a bit different

 I find myself getting interested in a return to a bit of larger scale modelling. This is something that the increased time afforded by the fruition of the retirement plan that is in place for next year should be possible. As such I am starting a “stash” stock up . 

Well following my motto of “Go big or go home” I thought let’s lay in something to really push myself. 


I have built model aircraft since I was 6 - which is nearly a half century ago..but never anything this size. I do remember seeing 1/24th Spitfires , Stukas etc as lad and promising to do one at some time . So I think this will do . Not sure when it start just yet , but it’s nice to have it there.

Also a few other larger scale things too , 1/48th P51 Mustang . And a 1/35th Chieftan . More of these to come as the fancy takes me.


I am clearing out the paint desk of some 15mm WW2 German stuff in advance of the usual winter painting challenge. 


Pak43’s and 120mm mortars for the start of my FJ forces are nearly done ,along with an 80mm mortar platoon   a PZ Grenadier platoon to finish . I aslso have a single King Tiger to fettle as well. 

The winter materials stock up has been completed with a large order of MDF  bases from Warbases , and the paint racks given a refresh of anything near running out . I have ordered more storage boxes and trays. The figures to kick off the “new project” have been ordered today .

It’s back to the painting season.


Saturday 7 November 2020

Not Forgotten

 It’s that time off year if course . Without Covid we would have been over in Belgium in Ypres in person. We will though never forget . We will return . 


Friday 23 October 2020

Gaming. Normandy 44 -The bridge at La Chapelle - part 2

 We played out the rest of our game last night . The Americans had a tough time of it at the start as they had attacked with only a few platoons that were unsupported . The Germans while heavily outnumbered were able to make local fire superiority count and keep the paras at a distance . This time the Americans would be better co-ordinated and were also able to secure some extra artillery  assets 

The village centre was being well pounded , gradually eroding German strength . The Pak40 covering the bridge was leading a charmed life along with its neighbouring HMG team covering the causeway

A para platoon had worked its way only the road taking cover in ditches to the side on the bridge approach. They were halted by a mixed minefield ...but had the skill to deal with while under artillery fire.

The platoon that had been caught in the flooded section , held itself together and pushed on forward - rattling the German defenders who were shooting badly .


They pushed on through to assault the defenders 


A smoke screen was laid in front of the village defenders while he platoon crossed the bridge taking advantage of the fact that one of covering HMGs had finally been dealt with by artillery. Batteries of Long Tom 155’s were being called in on the rear of the village and church which finally knocked out the German OP and shut down the defending artillery 


The paras were soon dealing with bridge defenders and dispatched the gun crew manning thee Pak , and cleared the house at the bridge end.


The US ATG’s had been set up blasting away at the river defenders and the tanks were ready roll as soon as the Pak was dealt with . 


The tanks were soon over the bridge - the Germans could not hold them any longer . 


It had been a good game . The American paras quality told in the end . A more co-ordinated attack - and a realisation that the causeway was actually a lot quicker to move on  -albeit risky - finally cracked the position . The potential German reinforcements didn’t turn up either - a German tank or two might have swayed this still . 

Time to think up a new scenario. 

Monday 19 October 2020

Gaming . Normandy 44 .The bridge at La Chapelle part 1

 We played the opening 4 moves of our zoom game tonight. Opening bombardment plastering the far side of the river doing some damage to the defending units .

The US decided to send one company forward - its being picked off by the German battery

The German OP in the church is coming under some artillery fire at last - but its still surviving.

HMG team that survived the bombardment - unleash a hail of fire at the platoons trying to ford the river..

American artillery and mortars continue to land in village , ,the units are dug in deep though.

the German arilttery arrives again.,catching 3rd platoon struggling through deep water ... it looks like Fox company is going to need some help...

and a picture of the mobile camera with a power bank connected as zoom seems to eat the iPad battery

Sunday 18 October 2020

Gaming - Normandy 44 - Battles on the Merderet. and an update.

 With the Covid rates around my area having increased my local group find ourselves back under a version of lockdown where we can’t meet face to face. So it’s time to set up another Zoom game. This one is back to Normandy 44 with an early battle west of St Mere L’Eglise With a US paratroop unit attacking across the difficult terrain of the flooded Merderet river to capture a bridge. We will start playing this week so just the terrain set up for you for now.

US forces must advance into the flood plain , work out how to cross or use the causeway . Capture the bridge and hold it . 

Next up is sorting out the troops.

I have been clearing out terrain stuff and have just about completed work on another 24 feet of hedge - taking me to 90 feet. This though is a bit more heavy duty bocage with a raised earthen bank . I still need to add some tufts etc - a day making tufts for the winter season is pencilled in for next weekend . 

Sunday 11 October 2020

Terrain - trees and bits

 It’s been a while since the last post . The day job involves keeping the world connected through CV19 which has had its challenges  and continues to do so , along with managing to grab an escape on holiday to wonderful part of Scotland . As the dark nights close in its time to up the production- so I am clearing out a bunch of terrain pieces over the coming weeks 

First up is a set of larger trees. These are by Busch and are in the height range from 90 to 140 mm and are the largest ones I have suitable for 15mm. That gives me at least 250 trees now. In addition I have some 6mm size conifers that mate Scotty found in his stash and gifted to me . I have started  making  a few large bases of these. Plus I am working my way to a 100 feet of hedging/bocage (66 feet so far)  so I have another 8 foot under way  . This batch will have a higher profile using some D shaped beading as a base .


Next up I have more 15mm. Normandy buildings then it will prep for the winter challenge time.


Tuesday 1 September 2020

Napoleonics - A bit of gaming and the new project.

 It’s been a long time since old friend Scotty and I have played a Napoleonic game , so it’s been good to get one under the belt. Scotty has used his lockdown time to complete a whole load of basing for his 15mm acquisitions over the last few years. He has also been making terrain bits. We played In The Grand Manner as it’s a system we have played a lot over our years attending the Wargames Holiday Centre and we pretty much know it backwards  . I know they are not everyone’s cup of tea , however if  you like chucking a bucket of dice they can work well. 

We used French and Austrians this time. We also have Russians & British as well already painted that need a flesh out .

This will also mean a return to Napoleonics for me in 15mm - initially looking at Confederation of the Rhine or Duchy of Warsaw for my first top up. So I need to do some figure research- I suspect Blue Moon for now .

Anyway on with some pictures -in no particular order as I only remembered to take them occasionally.

All in all a great day was had . Scotty was pleased to see the return of my fabled cavalry dice , with his infantry being sorely harassed by Uhlans , batteries ridden down , and French Guard Cavalry put to the sword by my Kurrassiers.  

It’s given us a project to work on with fleshing the armies out over the winter and getting them onto a bigger table - well it’s not called Grand Manner for nothing you know! 

Roll on the big battalions.

Sunday 23 August 2020

ACW - a bit of Pickett’s Charge gaming

 I have been topping up the ACW collection in the last few weeks and have completed just over 450 CSA figures which gives me decent sized armies now for both sides . We had played Regimental Fire & Fury previously which are fine if a bit slow. I had picked up the Picketts Charge set last year so I thought it’s time to give it a run out - albeit solo today - as  hopefully we are back to some face to face club gaming in September with the Old Guard mob so I have offered to run a game with them. I thought it played well . Few more turns to do through this week.

The scenario is the introduction one in the rules book at Antietam and the sunken road.

I still have cavalry to do for both sides . Martin has given me another brigade worth of painted  stuff for the Union which I will rebase for consistency . And there is still some capacity in the Sally 4th RUB MDf inserts so might as well fill em!

Anyway a few shots of toys 

Tuesday 4 August 2020

Bootleggers - A first game

Finally managed a face to face game this week. Martin C popped over to the cave . We had decided to try and actually do something with the  Bootlegger collection. I have all the figures painted for that and have done for 6 years. I don’t though have enough city terrain pieces - mind I do have them in the MDF mountain o’ shame - so they will get some attention this winter now. 

We set up the location for the “still” and the stock of booze - out in the woods. The police and G-Men were out to enforce the Volstead Act. I broke out a scratch built farmstead building that also hasn’t seen much use from  the Old West collection .

We used the basic rules from Old West system , with some tweaks for automatic weapons and Tommy Guns . And less granular detail on wounds . It did play really well . I will get the tweaks written up for another run out. I have ordered a couple of bespoke card decks from Artscow to create stuff specifically for this collection

We ended engrossed with the games I forgot to take more pictures . We played two games with Martin winning both as the Police and then the Bootleggers. So at least it proved it was balanced for a thrown together scenario . 

And just a reminder of some of the city stuff I have ..