Hello!

Hits: 140

It took me years to get those memories back on track… I fondly remembered that “special” mountie I had when a child… never seen one alike since then, it does not matter a lot to me that it was simply an undress dark blue patrol jacket… IT WAS MY BLUE MOUNTIE!… so I finally painted him myself! ANDREW STEVENS REPLICAMETALMODELSOLDIERS 54mm. Painted by myself.

I decided to create a Blog – obviously and not originally named https://www.mytoysoldiersandme.com – as a mean to communicate with the rest of the wargaming/collecting world -and a posteriori with my grandchildren- and specially with my readers! You must forgive me because this is NOT an orthodox Blog, in fact it does not function at all as one, it is more a collection of Posts. I do actualize those Posts when I have an idea or change my opinion about something, but not in the usual chronological way someone would expect. What is more I order them at my whim thinking how I would like to read them myself, but nevertheless there is a rough guide by themes which permits direct access by interests.

CATEGORIES

I have been playing with Toy Soldiers since I was born, I collect them, have been involved in all kinds of approaches to the theme, including Wargaming (in different scales), Military Modeling, Conversions, Painting Myself or using Painting Services… You name it I have done it (excluding fantasy, Sci-fi and wargaming post 1900). By the way if you considered worthy or of help please share the link with your friends in the Toy Soldier community!

I even wrote a book about it once (available in English and Spanish languages) but the passing of time has made the text a bit incomplete… so here is the way to explain what happened next -after 2016- quite a lot of things in fact! The book explained my experiences in the fields of wargaming and collecting since the middle fifties up to 2016.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is WhiteCover.png
That is the cover and back cover of the second English edition. Still on sale through amazon, both on paperback and kindle. Finally this one sales regularly in the wargames fraternity and readers interested on the topic of Toy Soldiers.

This book was what it started all. Well, to be exact -as it says in the caption- in fact this is the English second edition.
The “white book” was the second English edition three years after the “black book” fiasco. By now I am quite proud of it, it is quite self-contained and exhaustive about the Hobby. But from my perspective it is becoming slowly obsolete with no mention of the current trends and times… it does not mention LITTLE WARS TV for example (podcasts!), neither my current passion for the ACW in Baccus 6mm with Baccus and Leven scenery (renewed interest for a period). And some other collateral interests like the NWF, North of Africa Colonial French, LBH, Second Punic War -“counters” for a board game- Death Ride in the FPW etc. But this Blog hopefully makes up for it. In fact it complements the second edition in English nicely enough as an update.

As it is, I first wrote the book in Spanish (Second edition also still available in amazon) because I was born in Spain and that was my first language.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is RedCover-1.png
Cover and Back cover of the Spanish second edition.

I decided to translate the opus to English myself because the Anglo-Saxon community (UK and USA and Internationally around…) is where the hardcore followers thrive. It was a mistake, I was wrong because sintaxis and language construction of the first English edition were not good enough, and that is a big euphemism. Hard or even mild critics on amazon mentioned that specifically, so I got a translator and corrector for the English second edition -that after three years reads as a different book!- and added more than a hundred pics in colour (as you know a picture is worth a thousand words).

In fact I thought this “blog” would be useful because I can edit, add, reorder or delete!- and post the link to the blog in FB or twitter, so if someone is interested he or she gets the update for free, it has not increased the sales of my autoedited books and I will never get back the time and money invested in them… but I am having a lot of fun… the blog has been looked upon from 96 different countries so far and 19.000 visits… (counting robots I am afraid) not bad for such a minority interest!

NEW Projects and “moves” 2020

Hits: 139

Having finished the Baccus 6mm ACW Armies including “special stands” it was a matter of time that I would have “the itch” again. I am not surprised… it has been always like this. So I am going to explain it in this post and let you see how things evolve. In fact I am NOT through the ACW… I fear I am addicted to those Brigade bases 60×30 mm specially for the ACW… because they look like my old units of 25mm Minifigs. Going to write a solo play rules for them… having in mind the use of my special stands. I guess I am going to concentrate in the ACW period and leave it at that. Better do one properly than disperse my actions with new periods. Have already sidetracked enough as it is… so at this moment ACW is paramount in my thoughts… A deep analysis of Altar of Freedom ORBATS manifests the sorely need to get 13 new Union Infantry Brigades and 9 Confederate new Infantry Brigades… that way I can play even Gettysburg (again)… The clear point is that what matters is the base and not what’s on it, so I am going to design new ways of glueing the minis on them and the way I placed them. Examples: 1) Gaps in the lines; 2) Three Regiments per Brigade stands 6 in two ranks/one man gap/ 8 in two ranks with the flags/ one man gap/ 6 in two ranks… only minor changes in colour schemes; 3) Rear rank with less minis (attrition and filling the first line); 4) More space in the flanks of a brigade, have enough brigades with two lines of 12 minis… will go for some brigades with two ranks of ten; 5) A mix of all the afore mentioned. I love variety on the look of them.

1.- New Project priority: Be able to solo play wherever I am… confined or not… that means reorganizing my wargaming life if science and medicine gives me a second lease of life… sounds a lot like a “saving throw”. Three months of confinement gives you time to think a lot.

2.- I am using smaller bases for projects like the French Foreign Legion and guess some characters deserve to be in single stands. Nearly Role Playing you will think… in 6 mm?… well, why not? … Got them and are very playable for small games.

3.- Confined without my camera and no access to my 6mm figures makes the wait frustrating in this field. Those pics below seem very old to me. Finally got my camera/tripod after a trip to my office, the Military Modelling post was done thanks to that.

Final stages… Fort Zinderneuf five times smaller that the one I used to have in 28mm.

FFL rallying square. Final stages… have to add flag etc. Baccus 6mm proxies from the Franco-Prussian War range.

Today 27th of February the Reveille parcel arrived!… Very good Zinderneuf Fort and legionnaires based in twos and singly (smaller bases by Pendraken), also trees stands, bocage or impassable terrain in 60x60mm bases and a Mill Building for the ACW!… as usual Daniel Hodgson does the best scenery around, but still very good painting minis too mind! have to do proper pics… in due time… access to my 6mm collection still restricted. Busy making lists of the ACW Brigades and negotiation with Dan Hodgson about the future Indian Plains for the LBH looming in the not so far distant future…

4.- Long, long, long ago I decided that I have not love lost for Dervishes, Fuzzy Wuzzies, Afghans, Zulus, Redskins (going to do an exception to the rule with them Injuns in 6mm… the Baccus Catalogue is some kind of dead trap for me!) etc. specially NOT in 54mm (That I will keep intact). I still have temptations in 6mm… but so far I have avoided the minis… puffs of smoke here and there and dice throws will suffice… To each his own manias… I love MY Armies but do not have empathy with the enemy at all… wish there was a Wargames Club nearby sometimes (but I am a bit like Groucho Marx in that aspect if they would have me then I probably would not be interested…)

5.- Finally the Baccus ACW packs arrived today 27th of February!… time to sort them out and organize heterodox compositions on the standard 60x30mm stand for POLEMOS or Altar of Freedom rules (tampered by me of course!). I guessed right… 3 packs of ACW07 gives you two full brigades of kepi with blanket across chest… + the rest up to 12 or more brigades. More packs have arrived since then. Next one’s will be bought by Greg directly… no need to come and go from the UK as he has to paint them… must post to him the one’s I got. Finally decided to get Division Commanders (at least they will have an use as “markers”).

6.- Have a couple of pics from Replicamodelsoldiers Andrew… he has nearly finished my order from last December by now…

In those four pics you can see part of the Infantry, the lancers, and the rearranged/reshuffled cabinet to liberate a shelve for them. By now the RCMP is gone to the other cabinet and two shelves are liberated.

The Military Modelling figures are there only for protection and would be out as soon as new 54mm Replica Metal Soldiers by Andrew arrive.
RCMP moved on and are happy to be in the Household Division Cabinet.

So in a nutshell those are “the moves” actually happening, in the meantime reading a lot of books as usual, Little Big Horn, ACW, Western “classics” , a BD (read Comic Strip with French text) on the Maximillian Mexican War (splendid drawings by Meynet) and a wonderful English edition of War&Peace by Tolstoi (actually ended it and no wargaming use for it at all I am afraid… lol ) Actually in page 700 he mentions Blue coated French Dragoons to my everlasting surprise and disgust, at least the editor could have provided a footnote on the page explaining that French Dragoons were Green coated… (redundant and farfetched comment just for those who still think that is a new set of Napoleonic rules). Just bought the book ROSEBUD by Paul L. Hedren on amazon.co.uk because it seems interesting to wargame… in fact it is a very good read and I can recommend it!… also reading the third volume of Daniel Greene’s Northern Wolf ACW series… and even reading at the same time “The Eagle and the Snake” by Douglas Boyd, “Sharpe’s Eagle” (Bernard Cornwell of course) and Beau Geste/Beau Sabreur/Beau Ideal by P.C.Wren yet again… and indulging in some yet read again of Zane Grey.

And here we are… waiting for a vaccin to be developed or a cure (read drugs anti “the thing” that works)… any of them will do I guess. Not finding funny the comments on the news that only kills over seventy (been 68 puts you too near of the front line I guess).

Military Modeling

Hits: 44

Crimean Highlanders 120mm aprox scale.

In my time I did indulge in Military Modeling, but not that much really, as I wrote in my book I have tried all the approaches to the hobby. Those chaps in Matt finish look very nice indeed but once you have finished them they are eminently “decorative” meaning by that there is no way to play “games” with them. Some I painted myself, some I bought already painted and based in a shop.

This is the biggest soldier I own and it is a china/porcelain item, quite big in fact, say 250mm. Quite a Chasseur a Cheval of the Imperial Guard from Napoleon. A very fragile thing,

I will show next a mounted officer from the Spanish Army in the same scale as the Highlanders.

1910 is a bit a late period for me but as long it is pre WWI it is OK.

And finally a Greek Warrior, Prince Valiant and Richard Sharpe all in 54mm.

I think they are from the Andrea Miniatures Range but not sure at all. 54mm. ( a greek hoplite, Prince Valiant and Richard Sharpe).

I stopped collecting them because they are quite fragile and when cleaning the bookshelves they are exposed to heavy damage, not if I clean myself mind, but sometimes the “hired help” are not careful enough. Did do some repairs on them several times.

Last but not least… Capitán Alatriste ( Vigo Mortensen), John Wayne (Fort Apache) and Gary Cooper (Beau Geste)…54mm.

You can see a Custer figure in 54mm in the post Little Big Horn on this same Blog.