Nikola Tesla is probably one of the most under-appreciated scientists of all time. One of his creations was the experimental Wardenclyffe Tower built near New York, intended as a proof of concept demonstration of wireless telegraphy, broadcasting and even wireless power transmission – clearly years ahead of its time.
We thought that such a device fitted perfectly into the Victorian Science-Fiction background of Aeronef and Land Ironclads, either as a communications tower or some sort of radar-like device. The original tower has long gone (although the base building remains) but fortunately there is still plenty of photographic reference. We’ve reproduced the tower (or a decent facsimile of it) as part of the 2mm scenery range in our Shapeways shop, and you can also buy it from our website.
When posting about the Stoke Rochford Aeronef weekend last month, I forgot to mention one vital fact – Brigade will be there (at least I will, Phil has a previous engagement*) with a mini-trade stand. Well, not a trade stand as such, I’ll just be cramming a few bits into the back of the car in case anyone wants anything – mostly Aeronef, Land Ironclads, 2mm buildings or 15mm SF, items related to the games being played.
So if you’re staying for the whole weekend, or just popping in for a day, you’ll be able to get hold of things from us. You can order in advance (a very good idea since I don’t really know what stock I’ll have) and pay either using the ‘Collect in Person’ option on the website, or I’ll take cash or credit cards on the day. Or if you just want to have a browse through and pick up a few bits from what I have with me, that’s fine too.
Even if you live in the immediate area around Grantham and want to order anything just to avoid postage charges, you can order and pop in on the day – I’m sure Dave won’t mind a few extra visitors !
* – Phil’s other engagement is at the Cavalier show in Tonbridge, Kent, where he’s debuting the 28mm WWI game that he’s been working hard on all Winter. So although we won’t have a trade stand there, you can order from the website (again, use the ‘Collect in Person’ option to avoid shipping charges) and pick the order up from him at the Maidstone Wargames Society table.
Dave’s organising another event this year over the weekend of 21st/22nd/23rd of February. This year the ‘Nef game will be based in the Caribbean and will run over the two days, and there will also be some 15mm Gruntz gaming happening as well with the rules author, Robin Fitton, in attendance. Two day’s stay at the hotel plus breakfast and evening meal is just £99 per person, which is an absolute bargain.
For more details contact David by e-mail or call on 1476 531203.
Jon sets his games in more of an early-C.20th ‘pulp’ background rather than the late-1800’s of the official setting, and asked me if we could make some in-scale aircraft models to fit his view of things. The particular aircraft he was after were the Boeing P-26 Peashooter and the Martin B-10 bomber with its distinctive twin cockpits.
Since these models don’t necessarily fit in with our existing Aeronef range, we’ve decided to do them as 3D print-on-demand models in our Shapeways store, rather than as metal castings.
Clicking on the images above will take you to the relevant page in our Shapeways ‘Brigade3D’ store. If you wish to order a different number than those available (we have them in packs of 12 fighters or 6 bombers) then please contact us and we’ll arrange to have a file with the correct number uploaded for you; pricing in Shapeways is such that the more you order, the cheaper they become per item.
And before anyone asks, I didn’t paint the markings ! They are decals from the excellent Dom’s Decals range.
It was mail call time this week at Brigade Towers, which is always exciting. Yet another package landed containing a plethora of models, some of which were test prints for items in the Shapeways Shop. Clicking on any of the model pictures below will take you straight to the relevant page in the shop.
First up, and my favourite of this batch, is a set depicting a WW2 Chain Home radar installation. As well as the four receiver and transmitter towers you get the transmitter and receiver blocks with protective blast walls, a generator bunker, Nissen huts and accommodation block. All of this is modelled to 1/1000th scale so will fit perfectly with 2mm or 1/1200th or larger scale aircraft – I’ll be using mine with 1/600th aircraft once it’s painted.
Staying in the same scale and with the aerial theme, the second and third sets are variations on our existing airship mooring mast. The first one has the same mast but with a set of huts similar to those formerly found at RAF Cardington (the mast is long gone but the concrete base of the mast is still clearly visible from the air, and the winch hut is still in place).
The second variant has the same mooring mast with a two-storey building at the base – very much like the ones found around the Empire, in Canada and India.
Last but not least, something we made by customer request; these are scaled up versions of our 15mm Moisture Collectors, designed for 25/28mm models (the Tau Firewarrior was the only SF figure of this scale I had to hand – he’s just there to show you how big they are !). They are sold as a set of six, but if you’d like to order a different number, contact us and we’ll set it up so you can buy the right amount.
What’s really impressive is the terrain setup – Andy bought a large batch of our 2mm buildings and fortifications to create a number of villages and towns. Although he ran out of time to completely finish off the painting, they still look pretty impressive – his approach of creating a series of tiles makes for a very flexible layout.
The group also have their own wargaming weekend coming up – Texas Broadside, which is run in the wardroom of the dreadnought-era battleship USS Texas !
Last weekend, we ventured north of the Watford Gap to Stoke Rochford Hall, a converted Victorian country house which now serves as a hotel, conference centre, wedding venue and – for this particular weekend – a wargaming venue. Organised by David Frampton, who works at the hall, we were going to join in a large Aeronef game put on by Jon Rogers (you may remember his spectacular Aeronef game seen at Salute 2011 and other shows).
After a late departure (my fault, I had to fix some stuff for work before being able to get going) and an eventful journey (well, it was mostly OK apart from missing the turning off the A1 to Stoke Rochford …) we arrived slightly too late for dinner and had to be content with the local McDonalds. However, after a late night tour of the hall, a good night’s sleep and a hearty breakfast we were ready for a day’s gaming.
I won’t go into the full details, but suffice to say that Admiral Dewey’s Great White Fleet under my command took a bit of a pummelling from the combined forces of the British Pacific Fleet and a Confederate squadron.
Next year we are going to endeavour to make it up for the whole weekend (and not miss dinner this time !).
Credit for the the models goes to Jon Rogers (Great White Fleet), Trevor Brown (British) and Dave Marshall (Confederates).
What we forgot to mention is that we will be there for the Friday evening ‘get to know you’ drinks and Saturday’s gaming session (we’d love to stay all weekend but prior commitments mean we have to be off on Saturday evening unfortunately).
This isn’t a wargames convention as such, more a wargaming weekend, but we will be taking a mini trade stand with us; it’ll only be what we can pack in a car, so we won’t be taking our full ranges by any means, mainly the VSF ones (Aeronef and Land Ironclads). However, if anyone wants to order anything in advance or ask us to take along some particular items to have a look at then please let us know – preferably by the end of Thursday, so we have time to pack and do any necessary stocking up.
We should have plenty of stock of the new 2mm buildings that everyone seems to like so much 🙂