Sunday, 7 November 2010

Prince Robber.

As the roundhead pamphleteers described him after his raid on Birmingham in 1643.
This is an offering from those GW renegades at Warlord Games.
He's nice and dynamic as befits cavalryman and was a joy to paint. However I'm uncertain about the anatomy of the horse, he's a little long in the neck & I think over time he may sag on his back legs due to all the weight being cantilevered forward. Time will tell.

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Yew Bow.

A bonus of the day job ( forestry) is that I occasionally come across something useful, in this case some nice straight grown Yew. Most of the yew that grows within the UK is difficult to convert into a useable bow by virtue of having too much side growth leading to too many knots & imperfections . Our medieval ancestors had access to Yew grown in Lombardy which was managed from an early stage to produce very straight grained specimens ideal for producing bows.
By chance I was able to harvest some specimens from within an overgrown yew hedge which by virtue of their environment had grown with very little side growth, the result is shown below,
This is the outcome after a days work with spokeshave & scraper plus another afternoon to fit the buffalo horn nocks. It draws well to 50lbs at 30" which may seem a bit gay when compared to the medieaval counterpart at 100lbs+ but bear in mind that after twenty years of intensive forestry work and with the prospect of having to work into my eighties as a result of the paucity of a private pension I have no intention of converting myself into a hunchbacked arthritic just to indulge in toxophilic dick waving.

Their Lords & Masters and some musings on Elephants.

The seleucid phalanx now have command,
and here with the hoi poloi,
Work has been a little slow on these because well the real job has been a little busier of late.
The argyraspids featured in the "Cast of Thousands" post now have a new member as well.
With the further addition of a musician & standard bearer this will bring the Argyraspids up to twenty eight, my randomly chosen basic phalanx number.
Next up will be the first completed Aventine Tarentines & another Aventine Elephant, this will bring my herd up to nine. However I am seriously considering letting go the Vendel sculpts I have, they aren't bad as they go but the Aventine elephants really are very good & they rather show them up I'm afraid.
It's a tricky business buying elephants; currently I have two Indians by Vendel, three Indians by Aventine, an African by A&A, an African by Foundry & two quite diminuative Indians by Ebob.
Despite their small stature the Ebob sculpts are my favourites, I use them as early successor types because their stature suits an astride mahout and pikeman. The Aventine versions are a close second, they suit the later successor era very well with well represented scale and banded armour & good crew figures.
The A&A and Foundry offerings are good representations of the African forest elephant but requiring some mucking about with the supplied crew to make them useful as Hellenistic pachyderms.
Lastly the resin Vendel elephants. I bought these when there was a dearth of alternatives but was never really happy with them; they are just too generic. Hence considering freeing up the space in the stables.