Thursday, 27 June 2013

Rifle and Kepi: Solferino Batrep

I recruited a couple of friends at my local wargaming club to try out my Solferino scenario for Martin Rapier's Rifle and Kepi rules while I umpired. Since my previous post I've added in the French I Corps. The map and OOBs are below.

The first lesson was how not to set up Hexon II. I put it together upside-down with just a few clips and then tried to turn it over. There was a resounding crash as the pieces came apart and clattered down on the table (without mishap). I should have used more clips, but in order to speed things up we placed the Hexon on a blanket which held it together well enough.

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Solferino Hexed

Solferino was the climatic battle of the Franco-Austrian War/Second War of Italian Unification of 1859 and my first 19th Century Grand Tactical project using Martin Rapier's Rifle and Kepi rules and Hexon II terrain. Some time ago I did begin collecting 10mm Pendraken figures for this, but I'm currently utilising the block armies.

I eventually decided to work from the map on page 59 of Richard Brooks' Solferino 1859 as it has already been stripped down to the essentials. Ignoring, for the moment, the northern, Piedmontese part of the action, I was able to get the main part of the battle onto 16 (4x4) Hexon tiles, which also happen to sit comfortably on my modestly-sized dining-room table.

Each hex represents an area 1 kilometre across. Woods are too small to be represented and high ground has not been considered. The road network has been created with 10mm wide felt strips, mostly in 12" lengths. These can easily be bent from side-to-side so there is no need to cut any curves. Cutting felt accurately is awkward. I marked it out with a ruler and a dressmaking pencil which leaves a white mark. I then cut it with scissors. All the roads shown took about half a square foot of material. I'm currently lacking blue felt for the canal and have temporarily employed a cut-up plastic bag. I haven't depicted any rivers. I don't know how significant they were.

The roads took quite a long time to set out. For a club night I would probably take a more rough-and-ready approach.

Monday, 17 June 2013

Hexon, felt roads and block armies

I've been so busy since my recent retirement from work that I've had virtually no time for wargaming, modelling or blogging, but I've broken the back of a lifetime's domestic backlog and today the coast is clear for bringing together some of the components of my 19th Century grand tactical project using Martin Rapier's Rifle and Kepi rules.

My first aim was to try out felt roads on Hexon to see how/if they stick and how wide they should be. I am planning to use brown roads for this project and black roads for my 3mm 1940 Hexblitz project. I'm glad to say that, as expected, the felt adheres quite well. The strips shown are 20mm wide. Perhaps 10mm would be adequate and, indeed, better.

The buildings are old 1/300 card ones.