Sunday, August 29, 2010

Paper Models and Original Castings

In an effort to complete my armies as inexpensively as possible, I have begun to look at card models for some of my vehicles. To that end, I began my internet search for free card models. I found a number that I think I can use. The first was labeled "Antique Truck". This was a black and white line drawing which I colored using a very old software (Photo Studio from the mid-1990's). I used acetate for the windscreen and rear window.

In this color scheme, this truck is for Army Red. I have painted the driver to be part of the Engineer Corps. The driver's body is one of my original sculptures, cast in resin. The arms and head came from my Prince August Traditional Toy Soldier mold.

The next car came from a Japanese language site with hundreds of card models. The "Old Time" cars were designed to fit on a single sheet of paper, and were, therefore not to  scale.

Using my trusty CAD program, I traced over the original model, broke up the pieces to make it easier to assemble, and designed new wheels. I then saved the line drawing as a JPEG and colored it with "Paint". The car below is based on an 1908 Opel Doctor's Car.

The passengers are castings of my own original sitting body with my german dragoon head added. The arms came from my Prince August molds. I see this little two seater as my Army Black Scout Car.

Looking around, I haven't seen any figures for riding/driving in the vehicles used in the game. I've had about as much luck looking for support and command staff. I have made some original sculptures of figures for this purpose and also aquired a mold making kit for reproducing these figures.

The figures below are my first castings. Most did not come out of the mold in the condition pictured. Air bubbles had to be filled and missing parts had to be replaced.

These first three are Staff members for my Army Black. The left figure is wearing a Jeagers Shako, the center figure has a field cap, and the right figure has the grenadier's mitre. The body is my generic Staff Officer. The center figure has the original head (turned slightly from the original pose). The other two heads come from a set of 4 I did for different Army Black troop types.

This final figure is the "Grand Duchess of Gerolstein". She is based on a painting of the actress that portrayed the duchess in Offenbach's time. Unfortunately, I could not do that lovely lady's face justice with my meager talents.  However, I think she'll make a respectable "hanger on" for my Army Black.

The drivers pictured above round out the first four molds I was able to produce with this mold making kit. I am currently refining my casting techniques to produce better castings. With the next kit, I hope to produce my three army commanders; Army Red, Army Black, and Army Horizon Blue.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Heliograph Team and Caisson

In my continuing endeavor to complete my Army Red Division, I have added two more elements, heliograph teams and caissons.

 The first is a group of 4 heliograph teams (one of which is pictured below). Each team is made up of 3 members, the figures being standard Prince August castings. To these I added the tunic pockets. The pockets are made of plain paper, white glued to the figure. I then primed and painted the figure, which will keep the pockets permanently in place.

I scratch built the heliograph from styrene rods, sheet styrene, floral wire and Kneadatite. The legs are made from the rods. I used a paper hole punch to make the mirrors out of the sheet styrene, and arms for the mirrors are the floral wire. The Kneadatite holds the mirror assembly to the legs.
The caisson was cobbled together using parts from three plastic limbers. The caisson itself uses the axle tree from one limber, which was lengthened with popsicle sticks and sheet styrene. To this a second ammo box was added. The third (complete) limber is used to tow the caisson.

Monday, August 2, 2010

New for Army Red and Army Black

Recently I posted my proposed Division organization for Army Red to the FLW website. I am also working on a division for Army Black (which I hope to post its organization soon). At this point I have most of the combat units completed ( I still have some Army Black combat troops to finish) and I'm am now mainly working on the support troops.

To that end, I've built the following units: The Bavarian Gard Du Corps for Army Black and Artillery Support and Commissary for Army Red.

Here is the Bavarian Gard Du Corps. They were made from the body of the Dutkin's British Horse Guards and the head of a Dutkin's French Napoleonic Chevau-Leger. My only complaint is that the head was a little big for the body.

This is my Army Red Field Artillery command. The rules do not specify a battery command, but I needed someone to hold their flag. I scratch built the rangefinder from styrene rods for the legs, aluminum tubing for the sight and some green putty. The figures are Prince August traditional toy soldiers. The left and right figures stock, with minor modification to the arms. The sighter Was bent at the waist to look through the scope.

Finally, I have my to staffers for the echelon. Again, these are standard Prince August soldiers. The modification to these was the hat. I clipped off the "overhang" on the soft cap and filed it smooth to make the cap.