Wednesday, May 21, 2008

15mm Iron Brigade

As promised, here are photos of my recently completed firing line unit of 15mm Iron Brigade figures from Battle Honors. These were the first 15mm I have ever painted. I really am pleased with the results, especially considering I have been painting figures for a short time. I just wished BH had more poses in the firing line. I wasn't sure which way to face the fellows loading, so I used my best guess based on how they could fit on the stand. While I like four-figure stands, I decided to base three figures on 1"x1" 3mm- thick masonite bases from GF9 to save a bit of money on figures, to protect the figures, and to make the stands easier to pick up. I tried for a more ragged looking line befitting the American Civil War.

Painting
I painted the frock coats using Ceramcoat Navy Blue, which looks perfect on my gaming table. I painted the trousers with Reaper's True Blue, the closest blue I had on hand. Since then, I have switched to Vallejo's Deep Sky Blue, which is less intense and still looks good on the table. The hat tassels are the same blue but drybrushed on.

Bases
I wanted to make my stands look like real bumpy ground, so after gluing the figures to the base I spread Elmer's wood putty about the bases like I do for 25mm figures. I ignored the spaces between the legs, and added a few large rocks here and there. When that dried the next day, I spread white glue over the bases and dipped them into a mixture of fine sand with a bit of larger grit tossed in. The sand is cheap stuff from Wal-Mart. After drying the bases with a blow dryer (my best friend in this project!), I painted the entire thing including sides with black gesso. I let this dry overnight.

The next day, I dabbed Games Workshop undiluted brown ink onto the sand, heavier in some places, lighter in others. Next, I drybrushed the sand with Americana's Sable Brown, followed by a lighter drybrush of Ceramcoat's Latte, and then a very light drybrush of Ceramcoat's Golden Brown. The Golden Brown may sound odd after having drybrushed the lighter Latte, but the Golden Brown oddly tied it all together. I drybrushed rocks with Ceramcoat's Rain Grey and then Ceramcoat's Quaker Grey.

With the entire base drybrushed, I dabbed on white glue in spots and dipped the stand into Scenic Express' Pasture Blend flocking. When dry, I brushed the base edges with Ceramcoat's Dark Brown. Finally, I glued a cut down twig onto one base and glued some more flock around it. When everything was dry, I gave the entire stand a shot of spray Dulcoat.

Conclusion
My process takes a bit longer, but I tend to look at every stand as a small diorama and the larger unit a larger diorama. I guess it's the model railroader in me. On the work table, I have the rest of the Iron Brigade (about 30 figures) primed with flesh painted, another 50 primed Union marching, and 50 primed CSA in kepis firing.

For rules, I am using my own regimental set. I used to use ACWarmaster, which I had a small hand in tweaking many years ago, but it just didn't work for me on a regimental level. I'll post more info on my rules as time goes by.

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