EXERT FROM APPENDIX 1 from Don Featherstone's Battles With Model Soldiers
(The book that got me started.)

"Nothing in these pages is a dictate, no word says you must or you shall do it this way. On the contrary, the book sets out from the very beginning to stimulate the reader to think for himself, and to use what he has read merely as a foundation for efforts and ideas which reflect his own temperament and character. Only in this way will he obtain maximum satisfaction from the hobby of battling with model soldiers."

-Don Featherstone 1918 - 2013

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Fort MacDuff, Guardian of the Frontier


Well, here it is. Darker than I intended but this is the point at which I gave up trying to make the fort look like either my firewood pile or some of the pictures of stockades that I've found on the web. 

Tricky thing wood. The chopped bits of course start out looking like 2x4 lumber but eventually turn bit by bit to a sliver/grey/black colour depending on degrees of moisture, wind action, type of tree etc etc. I've seen 6  month old wood silver grey and year old wood still tan and of course while the War of 1812 Fort MacDuff is probably a recent build, the one in North Atlantica is probably older. Bark of course, is liking trying to paint tweed. 

Anyway its recognizable that I meant it to look like logs which is the main point. 

Now, to get back to work on putting more trees into the forest to be seen, and possibly thickening up the abatis, which should I think be a bit closer to the fort, I think some parts of it are barely within musket range at the closest point making it far to easy to negotiate.

Trees and brush are going to be a problem as always in a forest fight. Thick enough to look right is a pain for trying to play a game. I do need to fix a bunch of the woodland scenic trees which either have  broken bases or have lost foliage but I think more lichen bushes are called for. They give the impression of foliage but can be booted about to make room and don't catch on sleeves or interfere so much with moving figures.

21 comments:

  1. 'like trying to paint tweed' - yes, that's just it. I usually tree different greys, with washes, but I've never got it right. That's why I really like the pre-coloured wood buildings from 4Ground. But you've done a good job here, Ross. Now, where did leave my flint and tinder??

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    1. Sir, I'm going to have to ask you to put down the flint and step away from the palisade.

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  2. An impressive looking structure-I agree tha abatis could do with some thickening up, dont want to give the redcoats an easy time of it!

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    1. I think they're more worried about red skins than red coats.

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  3. Wood really is tricky and I am never really happy with my results - I still cannot decide if spears should be new wood, old wood painted wood or a mix of all three.
    I think you got the effect just right - looks excellent
    Simon

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    1. I've seen suggestions that spear shafts were oiled just like musket stocks and would thus be a similar colour but I don't know what the evidence is and a lighter brown like an axe handle seems to look better which always counts for something.

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  4. I've fussed about how to paint wood a lot over the years; it's quite high up on my How To Waste Time list.

    Fort Macduff looks just the job.

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    1. Thanks Steve, I'll confess that it's rarely crossed my mind till I'm staring at in, brush in hand.

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  5. Excellent work on the bark there Ross. I like the little splashes of pure colour.

    Greg

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    1. A desperate last minute attempt to make it look less uniform.

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  6. That's a fine conversion, Ross. I think the color came out just about perfect. I wouldn't care to be the one who has to bunk down in the cabin with the gun on the roof though. ;-)

    Regards,
    Steve

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    1. It would sure wake you up when the gun when off. But probably not much worse than being on board ship, apart from the shower of dirt!

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  7. Very nice fort Ross, ...like the redoubts too.

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    1. Thanks. The redoubts are from BMC's Yorktown set.

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  8. Great looking fort - your vision,hardwork and painting has payed off so well!

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  9. Excellent piece of work. You could develop a whole new cottage industry in Nova Scotia.

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    1. Rob, probably appropriate, the cost was sufficiently higher than end value and the time taken was long enough that I might be able to get government money!

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