November’s Gone

November is already over, and I can’t believe it.  It was a fun month from a gaming standpoint.  I played in a great Black Powder game over at Jim Sagen’s house, attended the Museum of Flight where Dave Schueler and I ran our convoy game twice–and had a blast, and on Friday I ran the second Buffalo Hunt game with some rule changes and had some more suggested to me.  So, more gaming than my pre-retirement self played.

Some photos from our Museum of Flight game convoy game.  British players chose from a variety of bombers to attack an Italian convoy shepherded by two large Cant 1007Z bombers as well as choices of MC 42 or MC 200 fighters.  In the first game the Brits pretty much had their way, but the second game was much closer, with British losses.  However they did torpedo the tanker in the convoy which exploded.

It was also a pretty productive month on the painting table, though I felt like I tried a whole lot of different stuff and wasted a fair amount of time being fairly aimless. Here is what I accomplished:


These are Raiden’s splendid Beaufort bombers.  One of my favorite airplane miniatures. Unforunately they don’t make the Aussie version with powered dorsal turret.

  • four P-40N’s in RAAF colors.  Scotia planes, I wrote about these.
  • six Beaufort torpedo bombers in RAAF colors. Miniatures by Raiden.  More planes for Rabaul.  These are in Foliage Green with markings by Flight Deck decals.  Fun to paint and pretty darn easy
  • Six Beaufighter attack planes in RAAF colors.  Miniatures by Scotia.  Foliage Green, decals by I-94. Again headed for Rabaul.  The first of my attempts at weathering.

Scotia’s very nice Beaufighter.  They are just nasty.  Aussies replaced wing-mounted 8 X .303’s with 4 X .50 machine guns.  Teamed up with the 4 X 20mm cannon in the nose equals some real firepower.


  • 18 figures of bolomen for my Philippine project.  These were pretty easy to paint, and I enjoy painting them.  No rayadillo, mostly white, how tough can it be?
  • 12 figures of irregular riflemen.  I limited myself to three figures with rayadillo, which will probably be my standard going forward.


  • One Dragon model of the HMS Zulu, a Tribal class destroyer.  Had an easier time building this than the Orwell, but struggled with the final colors.  Planned to do her as the HMS Eskimo, but just couldn’t get the gray on white paint scheme to work.  Note to self, use white primer next time.




I acquired many, many little boxes of anti-aircraft guns, missiles, transport and radars from George Kettler and the Phil Bardsley estate.  What to do with them?  I’m not sure, but I definitely can’t do anything with them if they aren’t painted.  I’m not sure what these are, but I painted four of ’em and stuck ’em on leftover Litko bases.  It’s a start, but plan to see more of them. Some are clearly WWII  German, others are Soviet and intended for Vietnam.  In either case, pretty easy stuff to paint.

December will be a lot more focused.  I’ll have to have plans made for Enfilade as game registration will open in early January.  More about those plans in my next post, but they involve lots of painting.

On My Painting Table

28mm British Legion-These are Old Glory British Legion.  Not the best figures, but perfectly serviceable. They are a big chunk of the painting I need to do for my AWI Rebels and Patriots game I’ll be working on with David Sullivan.  I like these figures.  Different poses in the saddle, decent detail, and the price is right. Not so large I shouldn’t be able to jam two on a 50mm circular base. I need 18 of them for our scenario.  I actually have 30, but twelve of them will get a fresh re-paint job from a game I ran a decade ago.

British Legion

1/300 A-4F Skyhawks-George passed on a pile of these to me a while back, and I truly appreciate it.  There were 18 humpy backed Skyhawks and I’ve decided to divide them equally between USMC and USN versions.  These are the later versions of the little attack plane that remained in service all the way through Desert Storm, and certainly fought off the North Vietnamese 1972 offensive. I’ll find something useful for them to do. The miniatures are from Scotia and NavWar/Heroics and Ros.  Decent miniatures. I’ve tried to equip them with ample drop tanks and bomb loads.  They’ll appear in light gull grey and white.


What I’m Listening To


I’ve really enjoyed having the two stereo systems so I can listen to music wherever I am.  Lots of great albums on the turntables, including The Lovin’ Spoonful, The Isley Brothers, The Grateful Dead and The Eagles. But I’ve really had a great time listening to a Roy Orbison anthology-The Monument Singles Collection 1960-1964.  This two LP set issued by Music On Vinyl has mono mixes of all the great Orbison songs from the early 60’s-“Pretty Woman,” “Crying,” “Blue Bayou,” and my favorite “In Dreams” are all there in heart-rending glory with Roy’s absolutely inimitable voice.

Generally not a big fan of anthologies and Orbison has a zillion of them.  But he is also one of those artists who profited from the sale of ’45’s and not so much from LP sales.  This is definitely the best of the lot.




Looking Ahead to Next Year’s Museum of Flight

Tomorrow is the annual NHMGS day at the Museum of Flight.  I’ve written about it many times on my old blog.  It is probably my favorite game event of the year because we’re under an SR 71 in the Great Hall of the Museum of Flight and it’s frickin’ amazing. We have lots of time to rub elbows with the public.  There are lots of games to take a look at.  I get to hang out with Dave Schueler and Mark Waddington.  Oh, and I run the air racing game in the morning.  (Because I schedule the show and keep the list of games, I can schedule my game whenever I please. Bonus.

Air racing is the one semi-demand the museum puts on us for the show.  That and arriving early we get set up before the public arrives at 10:00.  I love air-racing.  It’s a lot of fun.  I have a collection of planes built and painted by Paul Hannah, Dave Schueler and myself.  They are 1/48 scale kits, and the planes look great.  Some are the old Testor’s kits that were introduced by Hawk fifty years ago.  Some are a bit more upscale and include the Minicraft Seversy racer, and I even have a nice resincast Me-209 which was a test bed world speed record holder.  I really like the racers.

Unfortunately they are a lot to transport, and because we have to transport them quite a distance from the parking lot, they can be a lot to schlep.  It will rain tomorrow, and with several trips to get everything in from the car, it will be an unpleasant walk in the weather. Worse than that however, is my constant fear that we’ll have accidents on the tabletop.  Mounted on flight stands 1-7″ tall, the planes become top heavy.  In a crowd, watchers can inadvertently brush them and knock them to the table or the base, and if that happens, it’s over. That happened once at Enfilade with our seaplanes and that was pretty much the show. They haven’t been out of the box since.

Dave and I have often talked about our wish that someone could make the planes in a more manageable scale, say 1/144th.  The racers are relatively tiny at that scale, small, save weight and all that.  John McEwan at Reviresco made a nice mini of the Travelaire Mystery ship ten years or so ago in that scale and I always hoped he’d follow it up with more planes, but none have been forthcoming.  At that size the bases would be heavier than the planes and they’d be smaller to transport though they wouldn’t be quite so eye-catching.  If only they were available.

I was very pleasantly surprised when Dave sent me an e-mail last week with a link to Shapeways.  Shapeways is a 3D printing company that converts designs submitted to them into 3D miniatures.  Lots of game topics, but amazingly one of their designers, Arctic Skunk, supplied them with some air racing designs in 1/144th scale. The Howard Ike and Mike are available.  The Gee Bees are available, models R, Y and my favorite, the Z, and more. I don’t know how they’ll paint up, but they look pretty basic and interesting.  There are pretty close to a dozen planes in the range.  (Don’t get stuck on the category for Golden Age Air Racing, more are available.) They aren’t cheap, though not bad. The smallish Ike and Mike are four bucks, while the bulky Gee Bees are more than twice as much.  Of course, if you want the super detail material instead of the basic white and flexible resin, you pay more.  About three times as much.  I’m pretty sure I’ll stick with the basics and paint in the detail with the help of Mendenhall’s The Air Racer.

Clockwise from left the Shapeways designs by Arctic Skunk are 1. Hall Bulldog; 2. Howard Ike; 3. GeeBee R 1-2; Gee Bee Z