New bases

Dean’s (of Olympian Games) bases arrived. I have ordered enough to do a few mock-ups to see how they’ll turn out. The base turnaround was very quick and Dean suggested cut-out sabots to layer over his thin bases. He will be able to do dice frames for me. In fact he’s given me a couple of dice frames to experiment with. I got a 6mm dice frame and 8mm dice frame to accommodate 5mm and 7mm dice respectively.

His advice was to do fairly thick dice frames to hold the dice securely. That’s sensible enough, but I think I’ll go with poster putty (Blu Tack) to reinforce gravity and friction. That means I can keep the overall base thickness down. You can see a dice frame below:

DF 6mm 75mm

6mm on 75mm (3″) base. Dice frame at the rear.

I had to search them out but I found some 5mm dice in the flesh. Gak! They’re tiny. In fact, they’re so small that I’ve abandoned them as an option. I’ve order some 7mm dice to have a look at. The smallest I have are 9mm and too big for the dice frames.

In terms of the bases my first impression is that 6mm and 15mm figures look pretty good on 75mm bases. Certainly, Napoleon’s Battles size infantry bases will look very good saboted onto this size. On the other hand 60mm looks a little crowded as the figures go right to the edge. Finally, 50mm is real squeeze. See below:

15mm 75mm

15mm on 75mm (3″) base.

15mm cavalry on the same base.

15mm cavalry on the same base.

15mm infantry on a 60mm base.

15mm infantry on a 60mm base.

15mm infantry on a 50mm (2

15mm infantry on a 50mm (2″) base.

My Heroics & Ros 6mm figures look very small on the 75mm bases particularly (as above). In terms of other sizes, see below:

6mm infantry on a 60mm base.

6mm infantry on a 60mm base.  Rear battalion in focus and depth of field wrong.  Sigh.

6mm cavalry on 75mm (3

6mm cavalry on 75mm (3″) base.

6mm cavalry on a 60mm base.

6mm cavalry on a 60mm base.

6mm cavalry on a 50mm  (2

6mm cavalry on a 50mm (2″) base.

The thing to test is smaller base sizes to sabot on to large 60-75mm bases. 15mm cavalry are going to struggle to fit on 30x20mm bases but infantry are fine. Smaller bases at 20 by 20mm are just unworkable for 15mm and would give an odd, clumpy look to 6mm.

15mm figures looked pretty good on a 60 by 30mm base.  20mm is too shallow for 15mm cavalry.

15mm infantry on a 60 by 30mm base.  Obviously, 6mm will fit well too.

15mm infantry on a 60 by 30mm base. Obviously, 6mm will fit well too.

15mm cavalry fit fine for depth on a 60 by 30mm base.

15mm cavalry fit fine for depth on a 60 by 30mm base. You can fit 6 figures.

Another problem is how magnets on bases behave when like poles repel each other. Magnetic sheet on the sabot makes sense, but I think I’ll go with shim steel under the smaller bases to avoid the repulsors effect.

Shim Steel 0.05mm

Shim Steel 0.05mm. You can see a test corner clip done with nail scissors. Yep, easy to work with.

I also found some old Napoleon’s Battles movement trays in both 3″ and 2″ size.  As you saw above, I’m not actually sure I want to go with 2″ bases.

Napoleon's Battles movement trays.

Napoleon’s Battles movement trays.

I showed these bases to some of the boys on Monday night. There was some discussion about the large number of 6mm figures we have access to. We have enough 6mm figures to fight the Battle of Dresden at 1:33 figure scale. That should be enough! In terms of 15mm we’ll have 6-7,000 figures which is also a substantial number.

There was also some discussion about how to use 6mm and 15 mm figures. I think the consensus was to place the 6mm figures on the 75mm bases to maximise the diorama potential. We should then be able to use models to signify unit traits (such as skirmish and firepower). We can use the 15mm figures on smaller bases for the larger battles as you don’t lose any diorama potential (because there isn’t any; they just fill the base) by shrinking the base width. They are always going to need rosters or labels anyway.

I’m not sure I agree, but that’s the nature of consensus. I think I’d go 60mm for the 6mm because if we are going to refight Bautzen, Leipzig or Dresden with anything, it will be with them since we don’t have the right 15mm figures for that.  For those battles we’ll definitely need smaller base widths. We can always place the 60mm base on a 75mm (3″) sabot.

15mm alternative

Aaaargh!  As you know, I had been toying with Napoleon’s Battles as the rules of choice for our campaigns and 15mm as the scale.

I had entered into negotiations for some additional 15mm figures to support this approach some time ago.  Someone was selling their entire army and I offered to buy it, French, Brits, Russians, Austrians and two-smoking barrels. Then they dropped off the radar (it turns out that was just while he was counting them). Well, now he’s back and it turns out it is over 4,000 figures! That’s 150+ brigades, 60 divisions and about 15 corps.

image1 image3 image4 image7

Leaving aside the palpitations caused by the final price (I’d agreed a per figure price with some ridiculous upper limit) it was the perfect solution in terms of getting started quickly.

So now it’s all back up in the air again. Do I stick with 6mm so I can use my friends’ collections?  Go with 15mm? Go with both?

There will be some overlaps with my existing collection so I can re-base and sell those.  That will fund some 6mm and the unusual troop types like Dutch Belgians.

I suppose it’s a good problem to have? How come it doesn’t feel that way?

Source for Revolutionary War Austrian figures

Just a quick update…

I’d assumed that I would need to convert most of the early Austrians as they had quite a distinctive uniform.

Like this!

They look like this!

The Revolutionary Wars are not as well represented in 6mm manufacturer’s line-ups as the later years.

However, after a quick post on TMP I’ve found a talented sculptor in Estonia who has done some appropriate Austrians as a small project and has sold out.  He’s prepared to cast some more.

Job done!  Thanks very much Sho. For those interested, his site is here.