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Preparing for Battle, Seven Years War French – Part 4 (The Army is marching off to War!)

Greetings All,

Part 4 already?  Seems so, and it’s quite logical as the previous posts are named as Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3.

If you’ve not had a read of them, perhaps go back and have a look at the progress made but I’ll do a quick catch-up for all of those who haven’t, don’t want to or can’t be bothered.

Back in July I was invited to watch (and ended up playing) a game of Maurice as I had shown an interest in our local club (Sheffield GIMPS).  After that evening (and losing due to poor help from my tutor – The Goat) I loved the system and vowed to get an army for it.

10mm was the size of figure being played with and the chaps pointed me towards Pendraken.  A quick visit to their site and by the time I had left, they had received a small order from me.  I had purchased the SYW French Army Pack.  A steal at just £22.20 for that pack (prices have risen recently but still great value) which got me:

  • 2 x SYF1 – Tricorn foot march attack w/o turnbacks (60 figures)
  • 2 x SYF2 – Tricorn foot marching w/o turnbacks (60 figures)
  • 1 x SYF6 – Grenadier foot march attack w/o turnback (30 figures)
  • 1 x SYF11 – 3pdr gun with crew (3 guns and crew)
  • 1 x SYF13 – Heavy cavalry (15 figures)

Total order cost: £23.20 (inc VAT and P&P)

So I picked up 120 infantry, 15 cavalry and 3 guns with crew.  A week or so after the order a large bag of tiny 10mm figures arrived in the post.  It was time to sort.

At this time I was given a load of mdf bases, measuring 2″ x 1″.  Should have been enough and was more than enough for that I had ordered.

Once I sorted these out and checked the size of armies the French would use for 100 points (Maurice rules).  Doing a basic infantry army it would appear that 5 infantry, 3 cavalry and 4-6 artillery are the requirements (plus taking some national advantages)

Each unit is based on 4 bases, so that would mean 20 Infantry, 12 Cavalry and 4-6 Artillery.

Looking at what I had, I could see that I didn’t have enough.

  • 120 infantry would make 15 bases (5 short)
  • 15 cavalry would make 4 bases (8 short)
  • 3 guns would make 3 bases (1 short).

A quick check back on the Pendraken website and I placed a second order, this time taking into account some variance in the troop types.

  • 1 x SYF8 – Grenadier foot advancing w/o turnbacks (30 figures)
  • 1 x SYF11 – 3pdr gun with crew (3 guns and crew)
  • 2 x SYF12 – 6pdr gun, limber, horses, crew (1 gun and crew)
  • 1 x SYF14 – Dragoons (15 figures)
  • 1 x SYF15 – Hussars (15 figures)
  • 1 x SYF21 – Field officers (5 figures)
  • 1 x SYW1 – General and ADC (2 figures)

Total order cost: £23.20 (inc VAT and P&P)

Now looking at my shortages from the original order, I’ve not got enough figures for:

  • 150 infantry would make 19 bases (1 short!)
  • 30 cavalry would make 8 bases (complete)
  • 5 guns would make 5 bases (complete).

At this point I had found Nik Harwood and commissioned his painting services.  He was good enough to dry base all of the above and advise me on any figures that we were missing.  It just happened that I need another pack of Grenadiers plus some civilians for the officer bases and the 30mm bases for them! (Officers are based on 30mm round, the General is on 40mm round).   I had supplied some flags but more were also needed.

Another call to Pendraken and I ordered:

  • 1 x SYF8 – Grenadier foot advancing w/o turnbacks (30 figures)
  • 1 x SYW12 – Civilians (15)
  • 1 x PNFL38 – French Flag pack 2
  • 1 x PNFL39 – French Flag pack 3

Plus a pack of 30mm round bases.

Total order cost: £6.60 (I received some Civilians for free – thanks Leon!)

That extra pack of Grenadiers allowed me to field the missing infantry base.  So now we had everything and Nik started work.

You can find details of then progress of painting this army in my earlier posts.

Zoom forward to Thursday 20th September and Nik tells me that all the work is done!   Along side with this great message he told me that he was going to take a number of hi-res images and the following day they appeared.

Here they are, please note there are a LOT of images.

Infantry

Cavalry

Artillery & Command

So there we have it.  I do have a bag of spares, mainly bases but a few figures that were not needed – I did though learn a lot from this, and have used this knowledge for my next SYW army, Prussians – of which a post will be coming soon.

What did this all cost to be painted?

Nik has been kind enough to provide me with the spreadsheet that he used, from which you can see his individual prices.  I shall be creating a new set of pages (shown on the top menu) for the painting services that I use.

As you can see below his prices are very good and I think you’ll find that his work is also very good.

ItemPrice £
NumberTotal




Commands: Cavalry figures1.569
Commands: Infantry figures144




Line infantry1120120
Grenadier infantry18080




Cavalry1.54567.5




Artillery + Crew5840
Limbers4.529








Sub-total

329.5




Discount

49.425
15% for payment in advance






Total

280.075

Nik’s communication is very good.  I had many questions (wouldn’t you?) and he was kind enough to answer all of them.  Not only did he answer questions it seemed he understood my world of ‘very busy’ and he himself was in a similar situation – so how he found the time to paint these I’ll never know.  Maybe if I stop blogging I’ll have the time… reminds me, must continue with my Vikings.  Nik also helped out with the research into how the army and certain units should be painted.  There’s a great online web reference that I’m just getting used to, it’s called Kronoskaf and it’s a wiki.  Have a look and you’ll see so much information that it’s daft.  If you do use it then please donate, I have.

Now that I have the models with me I feel that the cost to paint over the time it would have taken me to be a good decision on my part.  Yes paying almost £280 to get an army painted isn’t cheap, however if you add the cost of the army £60, then it’s just £340 for something that I have and can use again and again.  Yes I could have waited and done them myself but let’s be honest here 100mm is so small, too small for me.  So they’d have been silver or maybe black for years to come.  One of my 15mm armies is still silver and I bought that back in 1994.

Right that’s it.  This is the end of the small series following my first 10mm and SYW army, there’s a new one coming, do let me know what you thought of these.  The Prussian series will contain more info of why I have bought what I have and why i’ve gone for the amount of infantry etc, more in line with Maurice.

Edit: I also forgot to say that I am returning the Flag Packs to Pendraken (thanks again Leon) as the figures come with cast on flags and so don’t need the paper flags.

Cheers
Colin

Preparing for Battle, Seven Years War French – Part 3 (The Army is ready!)

We happen to be at Part 3 already and I am already working on Part 4.

Time (not a good friend of mine) has moved on since my earlier posts (here and here), and I already find myself behind in posting this.

So what’s in store for this post?  To be frank, another quantity of pictures (more than last time so please note!).

I will though remind people that that chap who’s painting these figures (I struggle to see 15mm to paint let alone 10mm) is still keeping me well informed and he’s been good enough this past week to give me an updates.  His latest update was given the subject “All done!”.

Similar to the last post i’ve also kept following his painting diary thread (on the Pendraken Forums).  You can find on that thread more detail then I’ll mention here such as colours used on each troop type etc, so go take a look and let Nik know what you think.

To quickly recap.  Last weeks post showed you pictures of the undercoated French, then with base colours and then final basic colours, this weeks post shows the finishing touches that Nik has put to the figures, and without further ado here we go!

First the Artillery.

Next come the Cavalry, first the Heavy Cavalry

Next the Dragoons

And close behind the Hussars!

The Infantry march in next, starting with Grenadiers de la France

Following on the Grenadiers Royal Marine.

And to complete the Infantry, some pictures of them all together along with the Line Infantry (not shown here).

Finally we come to the Command, Nobles and Notables.

And even more finally a couple of pictures of the army all together, how excellent does this look?

So to recap once more.  Picked up the French SYW Army Pack deal from Pendraken Miniatures.  I added more packs to that.  Sent all these down, received a quote from Nik to paint them all.  Agreed with that, sent a few more figures down (Nobles etc) and some flags, and here and now the work is complete.  Very easy

In the next and final post in this series I’ll show pictures of the models hopefully being fielded against some British, perhaps also do a battle report (in another post) and give a complete breakdown of the costs so you can see if getting Nik (or any other professional miniature painter) works for you, it has for me on this occasion, a few occasions before and I suspect a number of occasions in the future.

Huzzah!
Colin

 

 

 

Preparing for Battle, Seven Years War French – Part 2

Greetings All,

A simple blog post just to keep myself up to date with things happening to my SYW French.  Be aware this is a photo heavy post.

A week or so ago I posted the first part of the SYW French army that I’m having painted by Nik Harwood.

Since then Nik has kept in contact with me, keeping me informed as to his progress.  I’ve also been following his painting thread on the Pendraken Forums (linked in the first part, but here it is again).

Rather than trawl through that thread (which you should as Nik goes into details that I probably won’t here) I thought I’d collate all the pictures and basic details as to the progress.

To start then, here’s pictures of the figures all tidied, based and then undercoated.

You can see all the work that’s been put in.  First the tidying of the figures and 10mm figures are tiny. Then the sorting out into the various figure types and within that the actual troop type (ie Dragoons/Hussars).  Then comes the task of gluing them to a base, adding the base material (ie sand etc) then its time to undercoat and that’s it before any painting can be done!

So then that’s a good start from Nik, now he’s onto the base colours.  This is the stage you set the basic colours you want your figures to have.  It would seem looking through these Nik does paint the base colours en masse which leads (in his words) to some ‘messy figures’.  We’ve all been there (if you paint) so I know it’s just an early stage.

That’s it then for the base colours down, next stage of course is to paint on the basic colours.  That is the basic coat, hat, rifle etc all painted in the colours that they will end up before any finishing is done.

Let’s now look at the army once they’ve had their basic colours all painted.

That’s a lot of figures all painted up and ready for finishing.

I know that Nik has finished some of them already but I think this is enough for the moment, anymore pictures and it’ll take forever to load.

So far I’m happy with the work.  Nik appears to be doing a good job painting them.  It is of course too early to tell from these what the finished troops will look like and I’m hoping the finish troops will be here in a few weeks so I can see!

But so far I’d say that if you want 10mm figures Nik seems to be a great choice for a commission painter!

Signing off now, I’ll be back in around a week with Part 3 of this blog post series, until them “To War!”

Huzzah
Colin

 

 

Preparing for Battle, Seven Years War French – Part 1

Way back in July I posted a quick blog based on my like of the Maurice ruleset.  I mentioned in that post that I was in the early stages of building a SYW French force using Pendraken 10mm figures.

Time has come to report on the progress of this and by now you should know I have zero time for a lot of stuff especially after posting blogs here.

So I decided back then to out source the prepping, basing, painting and finishing of the figures to a painting service.  As these figures are 10mm I wanted to find someone specialised in 10mm and so who better to advise I thought than the people who produce the figures Pendraken.  Leon replied to my email the next day and sent me some email addresses for the people who paint their figures so who couldn’t be better I thought.

After emailing all of them and talking to them I picked Nik Harwood.  I have no idea how to start painting 10mm, 15mm is a problem for my eyes these days but from the links Nik sent they looked perfect and better still I found his advice and prices to be excellent, a perfect choice I thought.

A series of emails went back and forth with Nik.  The figures that I’d bought off of Pendraken went over to Nik along with a KR Designs case so that they can be packed away and shipped back all nice and safe.

When they arrived Nik went though what I’d got and advised me of what units they would make and what figures would fit on what bases etc.  He was also great in advising me that I would be short in certain units and so they’d need to have less figures per base.  I didn’t want this so a quick email to Leon at Pendraken and I ordered a few more packs and had them sent directly to Nik saving time and postage!  How great are Pendraken for doing that?  I also added onto this small order a series of flags so that Nik had enough.

Once Nik had all the models he did continue to communicate asking questions such as regimental preferences etc.

Here are some pictures of what was sent to Nik.  As you can see there are no fancy boxes with masses of space, these are in those heavy duty grip seal bags.

You should also be aware these are 10mm figures, tiny, far too tiny for my eyes to make a reasonable job.  So you get a lot of figures for your money.  I think in total I’ve paid around £65 for this army for the figures and bases.

Nik has kindly kept me informed as to his progress but also give me a link to his painting diary that he’s created for this commission on the Pendraken Forums.  You can find his diary here.

Here are the latest pictures he’s sent me (these are repeated on his forum page).

I shall sign off now but I’ll post an update to this in a few days when I’ve had a chance to take a look at the progress Nik has made.  I am very much looking forward to seeing this army complete, it will be the biggest one complete that I’ve got painted (in figure count of course as a vast majority of my figures are all 28mm which take quite some time (for me) to paint).  Reminds me, need to continue with my Vikings.

So keep checking back if these things interest you and if this really does interest you then think about picking up the rules (and cards) and of course some miniatures.  Here’s a link to Pendraken for the French SYW army pack.

Cheers
Colin