Thursday 20 September 2018

Armies for the Portable Wargame....Part 2

Rebels Advance! Spencer Smith Confederates from the superb collection of Jim Duncan

Following on from my earlier posts I spent some time thinking about how I am going to organise the Spencer Smith ACW collection – in particular the basing. Originally my plan was to base the figures individually as per Charge! and The Wargame and then Bob Cordery’s new convention he is using for his extensive Del Prado Napoleonic collection. After some careful consideration I have decided to use neither method – which is typical of me!

For a variety of reasons I shall be basing figures for the most in pairs. For infantry this is two figures on a 2” by 1” base and for cavalry two figures on a 2” square. There will be single figures used for various things with the basing being a 1” square for foot figures and a 1” by 2” for mounted. For use with the Portable Wargame or anything Battle Cry/Command and Colours based I shall be using the following convention. A strength point equals two figures so a four point infantry unit will have four bases each of two figures. Cavalry will have three bases each of two figures whilst artillery will have a gun and four gunners – a base of two and a pair of singles.

I have opted to use these sizes for a number of reasons but the main one is so that units on the tabletop have a little more presence.

With my current line up for each force being 48 infantry, 16 cavalry and three guns with 12 gun crew you can see that the numbers involved are not only small but can be divided up in many ways to suit the rules being used. For the Portable Wargame the army could consist of six units of eight infantry on four bases each, two units of six cavalry on three bases each and three guns each with three gunners. You can see that from this organisation there are four mounted figures left over – this is intentional as these could be used as couriers, ADCs or as an escort squadron to the C in C. For larger battles I would represent infantry units with two bases each of two figures, cavalry units with a base of two figures and one single whilst artillery would have a gun and a pair of gunners in support. 

I am also keen to use the collection with the Neil Thomas 19th century rules so using units of 4 bases for infantry and cavalry means I could field six infantry and two cavalry units – which is fairly close to the maximum size of one of the force options suggested for the pitched battle scenario contained in the rules.

My order to Spencer Smith for the Confederates I need (and a few additional Union types) is in and my MDF bases are on their way so within the next few weeks I shall everything in place to start work on this project. 

In the meantime though, I need to get the WW2 ships completed (still!).


Robert (Bob) Cordery said...

David Crook,

Your plan looks good, and I can understand why you have made the choices you have.

Good luck with this project.

All the best,


David Crook said...

Hi Bob,

That was the easy bit - next up is the painting!

All the best,


Geordie an Exiled FoG said...

I might do ACW in 20mm Plastics

David Crook said...

Hi Geordie,

I think it is fair to say that it is almost a golden age for the plastic gamer! There are plenty of figures around for the period and it is far cry from the days when all that was available were the Airfix figures!

Oddly enough I really used to like that range and would certainly be tempted if they were ever available again.

All the best,


Mark, Man of TIN said...

Let's hope the re-released vintage classic range of Airfix WW1 figures extends to ACW ... rather than the usual Airfix no figures nothing.

David Crook said...

Hi MIN Manoftin,

It would present me with a delicious dilemma is they did that’s for sure! I always liked the range and would welcome its return.

All the best,