Sunday, 18 April 2021

Up, Men! And to your Posts!!

Long time no post! The reasons are the obvious ones- the Great Pestilence putting the kibosh on gaming being the biggest one- but also more problems with Blogger (grrr... if it ain't broken, don't keep trying to fix it, Blogger!).
But most of all was the fact that with teleworking from home almost 99% of the time now, I spend so many hours at the computer that I sometimes just couldn't be arsed to sit down and spend another hour or so blogging on top of what I was already putting in. 
But I have been painting, and in recent months gaming, so at least I feel I have enough of potential interest to people out there actually to justify a post, Several, in fact. Here's the first- the latest addition to my ACW forces: 
Battery “I”, 1st NY Light Artillery. 

Organized at Buffalo, N.Y. from a German-American militia battery attached to the 65th New York State Militia under Captain Michael Wiedrich.

Fought at the Battle of Cross Keys (part of Jackson’s Valley Campaign), Second Bull Run, and Chancellorsville. In July 1863 it was in tough fighting at Culp’s Hill on the second day at Gettysburg. 

September 24th, 1863, sent west with the XIIth Corps to Tennessee after Rosecran's defeat at Chickamauga. Captain Wiedrich resigned to take command of the 15th New York Heavy Artillery Regiment, and instead First Lieutenant Nicholas Sahm was promoted to captain and took command of the battery.
Captain Sahm later died, and First Lieutenant Charles E. Winegar of Battery M, First New York Light Artillery was promoted to captain in command of Battery "I".
In April 1864 the battery was attached to the 1st Division, XXth Army Corps, Army of the Cumberland, where it was to participate in the Atlanta Campaign (Resaca, Kolb’s Farm, Kennesaw Mountain, etc.). 

Later part of the later Army of Georgia, during Sherman’s March to the Sea, where it's guns played their part in helping to make Georgia howl.

Although my infantry are all Dixon, I don't care for their artillery at all- too chunky by far. So instead I opted for Foundry artillery. These look fine alongside the Dixon figures as they are in different units. The guidon bearer is himself a Dixon miniature, but I think it looks fine here.
I had bought a number of the Foundry ACW artillery packs years ago, just at the time they started jacking up their prices (that being the days when Brian Ansell set out to make himself the Martin Shkreli of the wargaming world). As a result, I ended up just ordering the crews by themselves. For the guns, I had opted for Old Glory- the price was right, and you got a lot of them.
However, either the Union 3" Ordnance Rifle was designed with a flattened oval tube that undulated in profile lengthwise like corrugated iron, or else the Old Glory castings were seriously flawed. Turned out- unsurprisingly- to be the latter.
Having shelled out for the Old Glory guns, I was reluctant to just chuck 'em, Instead, I tried stubbornly to rework them; building up the tube profile with JB Weld, and laboriously filing and sanding them to something resembling their proper shape.
This proved patently unsuccessful, as well as being an unsatisfying waste of time.
So off to the bin they went. I then bit the bullet and ordered some plastic sprues from Perry Miniatures. These arrived in no time at all- in fact just one day after I had discovered that in some trade I made a year and a bit ago, were a bunch of ACW gun carriages with 6pdr guns. These were of unknown manufacturer, but they were nicely sculpted indeed. So in the end I used these carriages, but with the better (and lighter) plastic Perry wheels and (excellent) gun tubes.
Frankenstein's artillery, but I'm pleased with the result.

The Foundry figures were a bit harder to paint than the Dixon's, as I had to develop a slightly different technique while painting them. But if I don't say so myself, I think they came out great- and I enjoyed working on these very much (once I threw the Old Glory guns away).
I was fortunately able to source a NY artillery guidon from GMB, but they only did versions for Batteries “A” and “B”. So I got to work with a good pointed brush and sharp pencil, and converted the “B” to an “I”. 

It looks good, and if nothing else I think I’ve a potential career as a successful forger ahead of me.
This past Christmas Day I finished the Renedra American Church. An appropriate day, although being pretty much no-fixed-address in any religious way, it wouldn’t even have occurred to me had not my wife pointed it out.
It was a true swine of a kit to assemble, and I had to use all the tools of the trade I had developed over years of making plastic models to get the pieces to fit together and to fill in all the gaps. I had also decided to remove the rather crude cross moulded above the front door- which I believe would have been fairly uncommon on American churches of the time anyway.
But here it is: my Episcopalian chapel, the social and spiritual hub of the parish of Crabapple Corners. 

It’s a church on Sundays, schoolhouse from Mondays to Saturdays, once every two years a polling place; and every year, on the anniversary of statehood, it hosts the Crabapple Corners Annual Pie and Cider Festival- an event not to be missed, with visitors coming in from all over the county.
Quite the scandal in 1858, when Reverend Willie Johnson was discovered between the pews with young Ella-Mae Muffinbutt- she was found wearing nothing but her best silk bloomers, and the Good Reverend's remonstrances that he had merely been helping her find a nickel that had fallen off the collection plate fell, alas, on deaf ears.
But it kept the conversations over the cracker barrel at Judson’s General Store going for weeks on end.


DeanM said...

Welcome back the blogoshere, Robert! Lovely looking ACW troops. Good to hear you've gotten a game in. I still haven't gamed for over a year now. BTW, I once did a "Staff Ride" to Chickamauga - around 1995 or so. Impressive unit monuments all around the place.

Gonsalvo said...

The end results look great! Sorry you had such a time with the guns and assembling the church. The tale about the not-so-good Reverend made me chuckle, and I thoroughly approve of the books in background of some of the shots! :-)