Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Coastal Patrol - Figurehead Miniatures

I have finished basing the MAS boats. The first 4 were the early 501 - 526 models. The pictures were taken with my cell phone and did not come out badly considering. The ships themselves are under and inch long.

I am not sure if the Italians used the candy striping on the MAS boats or not. I thought I would add it anyway.

As you can see from the pictures I have finished assembling the merchant ships as well. There are two trawlers (the two on the right), an oil tanker and a tramp steamer (far left).

Again, apologies for the picture quality. These are not much longer than the MAS boats. The masts come separately and with both the tramp and the tanker, the bridges were separate structures that had to be glued in place. The tramp came with painting instructions. For the oil tanker, I will take a few liberties with it.

My father served aboard two oil tankers as a summer job during college and again after graduation. I still have his Merchant Marine card. He served aboard the Esso Pittsburgh and Esso Providence. I also happen to have a book on the Esso tankers that served during the Second World War. I will base the painting scheme for the oil tanker from the Esso Pittsburgh.

Note that the Esso Pittsburgh and Esso Providence are both 4 to 5 times the length of the coastal tanker that I have a model for. I wonder if there is a 1/1250th model for larger tankers? At 100' to the inch, that would put the Pittsburgh at over 5" in length as a model.

In 1949, my father stood on the deck of the Esso Pittsburgh and watched columns of Egyptian troops move across the Suez Canal to invade Israel. It is fun to have a hobby where you can learn history and family at the same time.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Coastal Patrol

Well the Summer Special from the TFL has come and struck me with another diversion. Jumping into a new set of miniatures I have purchased some 1/1250th scale ships from Figurehead miniatures.

My order with Last Square arrived very quickly from the time I ordered. The ships were rather detailed for their size and painted up very quickly. I am basing these on computer motherboard material that I had laying around the garage. Because my ship recognition skills are virtually non-existent, I will be labeling the rear area of the base with the definition of what the ship is. I have painted the first 4 MAS boats and am in the middle of basing them now.

Once these are finished, I will move on to the merchantmen. The larger ships have details that need to be glued on to them. These have the potential to be a bit fiddly and look to be the more daunting of the ships. I picked up a pair of trawlers, a tanker and a tramp cargo ship. These should make for some interesting games for the Mediterranean. Convoy interception and the like.

The British ships I picked up are all small vessels like the MAS boats so they should go quickly - Harbour Defense motor launches, Vosper MKIIs and some MBG-50s.

The one disappointment is that I cannot find 1/1250th scale models of the older MAS boat types such as the MAS 200 series. These were very prevalent in the backwater regions such as East Africa.

They do have larger ships from the Figurehead line that include destroyers. Those and some Italian sailboats could prove interesting to have on the table.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

East Front - Mud & Blood

More work has been done on the supplement. I have made good progress and found a fantastic site: http://english.mapywig.org/Austro-Hungarian.html. This site has Austro-Hungarian military maps. I am able to find many of the battle sites on these maps to get a better idea of what the terrain would look like.

What I lack is any good information on Russian descriptions of small unit actions. Not sure where to even look. Anyone have an idea?