Saturday, 28 February 2015

SAGA Game At The Harrogate Wargames Club

Had my first taste of the SAGA game at the club on Thursday.  SAGA for those who haven't heard about it is a skirmish figure game set in the Darkages - produced by Gripping Beast.
Up to recent I'd viewed the odd game from afar and hadn't really been inspired to try it.  However a game at the club a few weeks back looked such good fun I felt motivated to ask John Savage to run a game another game so that I could join in.  I dug out some very old 25mm Byzantines (mostly Irregular Miniatures) that I bought over 25 years ago, that hadn't seen the light of day for a decade I reckon (last used in a WAB game) to make up a 4 point army.  After an enjoyable I must confess to being quite impressed.  The rules seem pretty straightforward and even in my first game I was able get a hang of most of the basics.

I can see this is a system we'll be using for some time to come.  I like the way the armies aren't that big (its a skirmish game after all), so you don't have to make a massive investment, and can actually afford to have a selection if you want to. Found a company called 'The Dice Bag Lady' that do a 6 point plastic Viking army for only £23 !

I'm definitely going to buy the rule book this weekend, and am thinking about another army to get to use as well as my old Byzantine one.
Here's a listing of the various different factions I found on the web, on the Gosford Gamers web site  (Link).  
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As normal here's a few pics (of one end of the table) of what was a slightly chaotic 6 sided every man for himself game :)  


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Classic Top Gear - Robin Reliant Space Shuttle Challenge


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Such a classic bit from Top Gear, I couldn't resist posting it   :)
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Tuesday, 24 February 2015

CCKW truck in for a service

My CCKW due to its age is considered a historic vehicle by the DVLA and as such is exempt from requiring an annual MOT.  Owners self-authorise the road-worthiness of their vehicles.  From my point of view whilst it's a relief not to have to face the trauma of a MOT on such old vehicle I do want to be safe on the road.  To that end 2 years ago I put the truck in for a safety inspection (Link) and it's now time for another.  I'm using a specialist company called MV Depot who are based here in Yorkshire.  Adam Wright the owner is very experienced with CCKWs and having taken all the wheels off and inspected it all over, I'm following his recommendation and having the all the brake cylinders and hub seals renewed.  Here's a couple of pics from yesterday and today.
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Truck up on axle stands, all wheels off.
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Rear drum brakes exposed.
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Close up of the brake mechanism.  You can see where there has been a slight weep of brake fluid from the cylinder.
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Rear brake cylinders all removed and cleaned, waiting on new seals.
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Homeworld Remastered


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Comment:  I have the original, a classic space game in every way.  This re-mastered version is a  recommended purchase for those who haven't tried it.
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Friday, 20 February 2015

FUBAR - 28mm Sci-Fi - 40K

Last night at the club we had a another FUBAR 40K game.  Further tweaks to the rules were experimented with, namely:
a)  Adding an activation system as per the Bolt Action rules, and
b)  Adding proper penetration charts for armoured vehicles, like with the FUBAR 15mm expanded rules our club uses.
c)   Use of a slave Psyker.
The penetration charts worked fine but the Bolt Action system of pulling dice out, to then prompt an activation role was deemed a failure by all involved.  In future where multiple players per side are involved (as they were in this instance) we will use a system where at the start of each turn both sides roll to see who goes first, highest on a D6 winning.  Every player on that side then gets an opportunity to try and activate a unit.  It then switches to the other team, who then get to try and activate a unit each etc etc.  The Pysker rules were fine as well, and detailed at the end of this posting.

The scenario last night saw the Emperors forces fighting on the fortress-world Jago against the dark forces of Chaos.  It had become know that a lost relic associated with Saint Sabbat had been found in a small village.  A mixed mech platoon of the 53rd Cadogus Regt (Imperial Guard) was despatched with a small Pysker unit from the Sanction Division to secure the artefact before it was desecrated by the unbelievers.  The enemy forces also despatched forces to the village, in the shape of an Ork Platoon and two Chaos Space Marine squads.  

Battle was joined when the 53rd were disturbed searching the village.  One section of Guard held up the Orks north of the bridge, but were ultimately wiped out to a man.  The Chaos Space Marine advance from the West was disrupted when a Pysker took control of a squad member with a missile launcher.  This and a Lee-Man Russ tank saw that squad being eliminated, but the mental effort was too much for the Pysker who suffered a melt-down.  A 2nd Chaos squad made it into the village but was unable to stop the Guard locating the artefact and escaping off-board before they too were wiped out.  An entertaining little game overall  
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Here's some pics.


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Slave Psyker Rules for FUBAR 40K (Expanded)
Slave Pysker is chained in a cage and has to be attended by at least 2 member of the Sanction Division who will be armed with Laser Pistols and Flak body Armour.
1.  Must be activated in the normal way.  Initiative roll 4+.
2.  Range of use: 36:
3.  Can attempt mind control of any individual (not another Pysker).  Is successful on a roll of 2+ on a D6.
3.  The following turn(s), provided the Pysker activates the individual under control can be given any normal action, including a new one of Suicide.
4.  Once under mind control, if the Pysker does not successfully activate, the individual does nothing.
5.  Each turn the Psyker uses his mind control there is a chance he will go mad.  On a roll of 6+ each turn this happens.
6.  If the Pysker 'goes mad' the following happens:
a)  The individual under his control reverts immediately to the original players control.
b)  His attendants are automatically killed by a Psychic blast.
c)  Any other troops within 12" must make a D6 roll, and on a 5+ go mad and go over the enemy's control where they must try and fire on their old team mates.  If no targets can be seen, they commit suicide.

How Bad A Guy Was Richard III ?

The funeral for Shakespeare's greatest villain is fast approaching.  But did he really kill the princes in the Tower ?  Late Tudor England was a lethal environment for the politically unwary, with errors of judgement frequently resulting in a one-way trip to Tyburn gallows.
There is an interesting article here on the Telegraph web site that is worth a read: Link
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Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Picture Of The Week - No 38 - M1A1

A friend of mine Andy Baxter sent me this excellent picture of an M1 that he came across.  It makes for a good desktop background :)

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Comment:  A U.S. Army Abrams M1A1 tank takes a defensive position at a staging area during Ready Crucible in Germany, on Feb. 11, 2005.  Over 50 tanks from the 1st Armour Division, Humvees, and support vehicles drove through more than 60 kilometres of German roadway and farmlands making Ready Crucible the largest movement of American armour in Germany since the 1980's.  DoD photo by Richard Bumgardner, U.S. Army.  (Released)
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The Most Epic Flight Safety Video Ever Made !


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Comment:  This is excellent !  :)
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Saturday, 14 February 2015

Battlefield Game Designs - Rules Sets

Came across this web site called Battlefield Game Designs.  Link.  They are doing the following three rules sets that all look quite interesting:

Red Coats and War Hawks -
- Skirmish Rules for Gaming The War of 1812

Green Jackets and Voltigeurs
– Skirmish Rules for Gaming the Peninsular War –

Buckskins and Rangers
– Skirmish Rules for Gaming the French Indian Wars –



Wednesday, 4 February 2015

'Yaah!' Magazine

Just seen an advertisement for a new gaming magazine.  This is how it describes itself:

"Yaah! magazine is a new kind of periodical. An independent digest that covers all types of war and strategy games, regardless of their publisher."   Link
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Friday Humour - Early

1. Two blondes walk into a building..........you'd think at least one of them would have seen it.

2
. Phone answering machine message - '...If you want to buy marijuana, press the hash key..'

3
. A guy walks into the psychiatrist wearing only Clingfilm for shorts. The shrink says, 'Well, I can clearly see you're nuts.' 

4
. I went to buy some camouflage trousers the other day but I couldn't find any. 

5
. I went to the butchers the other day and I bet him 50 quid that he couldn't reach the meat off the top shelf. He said, 'No, the steaks are too high.' 

6
. My friend drowned in a bowl of muesli. A strong currant pulled him in. 

7.
A man came round in hospital after a serious accident. He shouted, 'Doctor, doctor, I can't feel my legs!'
The doctor replied, 'I know you can't, I've cut your arms off'. 

8
. I went to a seafood disco last week and pulled a muscle. 

9.
Two Eskimos sitting in a kayak were chilly.. They lit a fire in the craft, it sank, proving once and for all that you can't have your kayak and heat it. 

10.
Our ice cream man was found lying on the floor of his van covered with hundreds and thousands. Police say that he topped himself. 

11
. Man goes to the doctor, with a strawberry growing out of his head.
Doc says 'I'll give you some cream to put on it.' 

12
. 'Doc I can't stop singing 'The Green, Green Grass of Home'
'That sounds like Tom Jones syndrome. '
'Is it common?'
'It's not unusual.' 

13.
A man takes his Rottweiler to the vet. 'My dog is cross-eyed, is there anything you can do for him?'
'Well,' said the vet, 'let's have a look at him'
So he picks the dog up and examines his eyes, then he checks his teeth. Finally, he says, 'I'm going to have to put him down.' 
'What? Because he's cross-eyed?'
'No, because he's really heavy'

14. Guy goes into the doctor's. 'Doc, I've got a cricket ball stuck up my bottom.'
'How's that?'
'Don't you start.' 

15.
Two elephants walk off a cliff...boom, boom! 

16
. What do you call a fish with no eyes? A fsh. 

17
... So I was getting into my car, and this bloke says to me 'Can you give me a lift?'
I said 'Sure, you look great, the world's your oyster, go for it...' 

18.
Apparently, 1 in 5 people in the world are Chinese. There are 5 people in my family, so it must be one of them. It's either my mum or my Dad, or my older brother Colin, or my younger brother Ho-Cha-Chu. But I think it's Colin. 

19.
Two fat blokes in a pub, one says to the other 'Your round.' The other one says 'So are you, you fat bastard!' 

20
. Police arrested two kids yesterday, one was drinking battery acid, and the other was eating fireworks. They charged one and let the other one off. 

21.
'You know, somebody actually complimented me on my driving today. They left a little note on the windscreen. It said, 'Parking Fine.' So that was nice.' 

22
. A man walked into the doctors, he said, 'I've hurt my arm in several places'
The doctor said, 'Well don't go there anymore' 

23..
  Ireland 's worst air disaster occurred early this morning when a small two-seater Cessna plane crashed into a cemetery. Irish search and rescue workers have recovered 2826 bodies so far and expect that number to climb as digging continues into the night. 

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Tiger II at 2015 Retromobile Paris

Just came across this great piece of footage of the Tiger II arriving at the 2015 Retromobile Paris Show.
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Saturday, 31 January 2015

CCKW 352 - Truck Adventures - Update

A bit of a update on truck adventures in the last few weeks.  Always a bit reluctant to to start after being stood for a while, with the assistance of a few squirts of Damp Start (ether based) she will normally fire up.  After a failed attempt I cleaned the plugs and check the gaps, but didn't help, so it was clear that something was amiss.  As there was fuel in the filter the problem was probably electrical, although I did a have a spark at the points.  Having inspected the inside of the Distributor Cap I could see it was quite pitted so I thought I would replace that along with the Condenser and Rotor Arm as well for good measure.  A call through to Rex Ward sourced some replacements which turned up the next day :)
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Fitting the new parts in turn, the old Condenser was the culprit, but just for good measure I still went ahead and replaced the Cap and Arm.
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It's two years now since I had the truck independently looked over, so I had arranged to take up to MV Depot at Helperby this week.  I want him to have all the wheels off, check all the brakes over and amongst other things change the fuel filter.  In preparation for the 20 mile drive I stuck some fuel in at the local Tescos supermarket and was happily driving it home when the engine spluttered to stop and I found myself broken down at the side of the road :(   Checking under the bonnet, the problem was obvious, fuel contamination...  See pic below.
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Fortunately I subscribe to a recovery service through my insurers, so eventually I got recovered.
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The following morning the truck was winch off at MV Depot, and he managed to get it going.
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On the one hand I feel unlucky because it broke down just before the main fuel filter was going to be changed.  Sludge and water in the system would have become apparent then.  On the other hand I feel lucky that it broke down on a straight stretch where it didn't inconvenience anyone.  Given that I'd just driven right through the centre of York, if I'd broken 2 miles earlier in the middle of one of the major junctions it could have caused truly massive disruption...
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Kampgruppe Von Abt Web Site

This web site has some outstanding dioramas on it built by a very talented modeller and painter called Peter Shaw.  Well worth a look.  Link
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Monday, 12 January 2015

Zombicide At The Harrogate Wargames Club

Last Thursdays club night saw a busy nights gaming by my normal crowd with two games under way.  John Savage ran an ancients game, using for the first time the Sword and Spear rules.  From what I could see the game played well and the Romans in managed to achieve their objective of rescuing some captured soldiers who were about to be sacrificed in a Wicker Man.
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Myself I was involved with Chris, Gavin, and John Elwen in our first Zombicide game.  I posted on 31 Dec 14 that I'd got a copy of the game for Christmas and both John and I were really looking forward to trying it out.  It's one of those things you can read the rules, but until you actually get into a full blooded game you don't know whether its going to be any good.  We managed to get two games in and thoroughly enjoyed both.  Looking forward to our next session so be can progress to the next scenario :)

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Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Boom !


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Comment:  Whatever your thoughts are about the conflict, that is an impressive firepower demonstration.
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Thursday, 1 January 2015

Black Powder ACW at the Harrogate Wargames Cub

Last Saturday was the annual X-Mas holiday big game at the Harrogate Wargames Club.  Organised by John Savage with input from Theo Street who then umpired during the day this was the American Civil War (ACW)  being re-fought in 28mm scale.  Forces for the day were, Simon, Chris, John E and Gavin on the Union side and myself, Mark, Bill, John S and Mick as Confederates.  The results of two small battles before lunch (one a draw and the other a Union victory) 'Front Royal' and 'Mcdowell' were fed into the one big game in the afternoon - the '1st Battle of Winchester'.

Here are a few pics :)
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The start of the first battle I was involved with.  Viewed from the Confederate side we had to  force the Union from their positions and try and exit units off the board.
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Mid way through the game the my Confederate Infantry engage the Union troops across the river whilst Marks cavalry circle round behind.  We ran out of time before I could really force the issue.
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Pics now from the big afternoon game.  The Union defence line can be clearly seen.
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The Union stage a surprise attack on the Conferate right flank.
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The crux of the battle taking place on the left flank as the Union line starts buckling under the pressure.
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Happy New Year

Happy New Year to all visitors to my Blog.  I hope you have a prosperous and happy 2015.

Wednesday, 31 December 2014

X-Mas Presents - Zombicide

Gaming wise the present of note this year was Zombicide.  Seen quite a few pictures of the game in action and several people I know highly recommend it, so can't wait to have my first full game :)
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Sunday, 28 December 2014

Tower Bridge, The Dubstep Movement

Not connected with wargaming or military stuff, but still worth a watch anyway :)
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Tower Bridge, The Dubstep Movement from Chadchud Timelapse on Vimeo.
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Saturday, 27 December 2014

Merry Christmas

A slightly belated Merry X-Mas to all the readers of my occasional ramblings. I hope you had an enjoyable and stress-free X-Mas.

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Recon Wargames Show 2014

Went along to the Recon Wargames Show today.  This is a small local show put on by the Wakefield and District Wargamers Club in the Pudsey Civic Centre.  It it must be over 15 years ago since I last went so I couldn't clearly remember anything about the venue or the show.  Found myself pleasantly surprised all in all.  There was a good mix of traders and selection of games to watch/participate, plus  the food and drink was very reasonably priced.  My only criticism is reserved for the Bring and Buy which was rubbish.  The space available to show the bits for sale was inadequate as was the frontage to view the items, plus there was insufficient depth because it shared the room with several traders.
Found myself tempted by all sorts of goodies, but in the end settled on a purchase of the 'Firefly' board game, a jar of green Basetex and a Flames of War blister pack for £5 containing two CCKWs. Looking forward to getting to grips with the game, as I've read lots of good things about it. Link
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Festive Lights For The The Truck

Mrs Vulture has been and bought some festive lights for the front of the CCKW truck. Seemed like a good excuse to go for a drive into York last night, coinciding as it did with my birthday.  :)
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Here we are parked up in front of York Minster.
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Tuesday, 2 December 2014

Fury: The Exhibition


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On the 20th October 2014 Murray Walker OBE, a former Sherman tank Commander with the Scots Greys during World War II, well-known as a motor racing commentator, opened The Tank Museum’s latest exhibition, ‘Fury’. 
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Monday, 1 December 2014

Picture Of The Week - No 36 - Tank Her Up !


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Comment:
Not something you often see...  A WW2 German Panther tank taking on some fuel in a petrol station.
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FUBAR 40K Game At The Harrogate Wargames Club

At the moment I'm re-reading one of my favourite sci-fi series of all time, the Gaunts Ghosts omnibus edition by Dan Abnett.  Of course reading about the Warhammer 40K universe prompts an itch to dig out my 40K figures and have a game.  The problem though is the Gameswork Shop 40k rule set which is not at all liked by myself or my gaming group at the Harrogate Wargames Club.  As a comprise I suggested we use the expanded version of the FUBAR rules I've blogged about before and a 40K supplement I found on the web.  Accordingly we had a game a couple of weeks back with myself acting as the Umpire.

Playing on our usual 8' x 8' table an Imperial force comprising 2 x squads of 5 Space Marines and a squad of Imperial Guard (10 strong) entered in one corner and the forces of Chaos in the shape of 2 Ork squads (12 each) and 2 squads of Grots Snotlings (10 each) at the opposite.  Both sides moved forward and got set into each other and it quickly became apparent that the Space Marines had a significant qualitative advantage in-spite of their small numbers.  Both sides fed reinforcements in in the form of heavier units including a 3 man unit of Imperial Terminators which teleported down but using a random dice not into a great spot! LOL.  Undaunted however they climbed onto a building and opened up with their Heavy Bolters.  This was an interesting moment for they almost wasted an entire Orc squad in one round of firing.  This generated lots of banter round the table and a last ditch effort by the underpowered Orc team to try and kill some more Marines.  At this point we ran out of time, but notwithstanding this the game was judged to have been a great success.  Easy to pick up rules that gave a reasonable result without too much stress made a for a good evenings wargaming entertainment :)
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Here's a selection of photos from the game.

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Sunday, 30 November 2014

CCKW 352 Truck Home For The Week


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After weeks of rubbish weather, the sun has been out here in York. Got the truck home today. Plan to bleed the brakes later this week as they feel quite spongy.  
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Saturday, 29 November 2014

The day the entire German fleet surrendered

Armistice Day is remembered as the day World War One ended, but for naval historians Britain's greatest victory came 10 days later.  Operation ZZ was the code name for the surrender of Germany's mighty navy.  This article on the BBC web site is worth a read: Link

Star Wars: The Force Awakens International Teaser Trailer


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Comment:  Looking good !  :)   May the force be with you, always...
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Sunday, 16 November 2014

Picture Of The Week - No 35 - Tigers On The Prowl


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Comment: Just when I think I've seen all the photos there are to be seen of Tiger Is, a new one surfaces :)
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Sunday, 2 November 2014

Andre Davis Sci-fi

This little site dedicated to short sci-fi films is well worth checking out:  Link
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Friday, 31 October 2014

Bolt Action - Optional Vehicle Observation Rules

To spice our 20mm Bolt Action games up, I have come up with some Vehicle Observation Rules.
They can be downloaded here.

The way to use them is quite straightforward.
1.  In secret work our your army list.
2.  Select a substitute vehicle (and make a note against the army list).
3.  When first placing the vehicle(s) down on the table-top, use the substitute(s) rather then the one you have paid for on the army list.  Only swap the modes over when the enemy correctly identify them.
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Here is a picture from a game I played last night at the Harrogate Wargames Club.   It's early on as my vehicles enter the table.  Substituting vehicles, the King Tiger and Jadgtigers are representing Sd kfz 251/22 with Pak 40s, The PIV is actually a Hummel and the Brummbar is playing as itself, after it has just been identified by the enemy (after a lucky combination of die rolls forced a Churchill crew to abandon their tank :) )
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Wednesday, 29 October 2014

CH-47 water landing - Sonicbomb.com

A simply amazing piece of footage that is worth watching.

CH-47 water landing - Sonicbomb.com

Monday, 27 October 2014

Humour - Good Quotes

Sometimes, when I look at my children, I say to myself, 'Lillian, you should have remained a virgin..'

- Lillian Carter (mother of Jimmy Carter)

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I had a rose named after me and I was very flattered. But I was not pleased to read the description in the catalogue: - 'No good in a bed, but fine against a wall.'

- Eleanor Roosevelt

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Last week, I stated this woman was the ugliest woman I had ever seen. I have since been visited by her sister and now wish to withdraw that statement..

- Mark Twain

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The secret of a good sermon is to have a good beginning and a good ending; and to have the two as close together as possible

- George Burns

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Santa Claus has the right idea. Visit people only once a year.

- Victor Borge

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Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint.

- Mark Twain

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By all means, marry. If you get a good wife, you'll become happy; if you get a bad one, you'll become a philosopher.

- Socrates

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I was married by a judge. I should have asked for a jury.

- Groucho Marx

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My wife has a slight impediment in her speech. Every now and then she stops to breathe.

- Jimmy Durante

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Fury Film

Went to see the 'Fury' film on Wednesday for a late night showing at our local 'VUE' cinema here in York.  Took along my brother-in-law Mike and my old friend Chris Jenkins.  We decided to make the most of the experience and booked the luxury seats and chose the high definition screen to watch it on.  First time I've seen a film on that screen, and was impressed with the 4 x higher resolution, everything was a lot sharper. 

As for the film itself, for the military/wargaming enthusiast this film is quite simply a MUST see.  It's not perfect by any means as the ending is bit too Hollywood for my taste, but it gets a good 8.5 out of 10 from me.  Tiger 131 makes a appearance, my only slight criticism on that front is that we didn't see more  of it.  Attention to detail in terms of the kit used is almost second to none, and from that point of view it must rate as one of the best WW2 films made.

Here's a short vid showing some bits with the Tiger in.


Sunday, 19 October 2014

15mm Sci-Fi - Ground Zero Games 8 Wheeler

Recently finished painting up a GZG V15-54A 8 wheeled support vehicle. I already have a few of this family of vehicles, so I continued with the same 'aggressor' camouflage pattern. I've used a rare earth magnet to secure the missile launcher. As well as allowing the launcher to rotate, depending on the mission it allows me to swap it for a Heavy Auto Cannon (a spare weapon from Critical Mass walker). A small counter-measures jamming pod (ball) has been added for good measure.
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Saturday, 18 October 2014

FUBAR - 15mm Sci-Fi Rules

For those interested in my expanded version of the FUBAR rules for 15mm Sci-Fi (adapted from a set originally written by Craig Cartmell) they can be downloaded here from Dropbox.

Current version:  3-4-1   Link

In addition there is an Excel file with vehicle details:

Current version: Version 10     Link
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Picture Of The Week - No 34 - 6pdr Anti-tank Gun Sight

A month back I was at an event on Ginkel Heath remembering Operation Market Garden and the British para drop.  Whilst there I saw this 6pdr AT gun, and got an opportunity to look through the sight. Found myself amazed at the simplicity and lack of any appreciable magnification !

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Sunday, 28 September 2014

ENVOY - SHORT FILM


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Comment:  Worth a watch if your a sci-fi fan :)
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Saturday, 27 September 2014

Pak-40 & Flak 37 Firing


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Comment:  Impressive !
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Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Friday, 5 September 2014

Friday Humour

A teacher asks her class, "What do you want to be when you grow up?"


Little Johnny says "I wanna be a billionaire, going to the most expensive clubs, take the best bitch with me, give her a Ferrari worth over a million bucks, an apartment in Hawaii, a mansion in Paris, a jet to travel through Europe, an Infinite Visa Card and to make love to her three times a day".
The teacher, shocked, and not knowing what to do with the bad behaviour of the child, decides not to give importance to what he said and then continues the lesson.
"And you, Susie? " the teacher asks.

Susie says "I wanna be Johnny's bitch."
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Sunday, 31 August 2014

Star Wars: I.M.P.S The Relentless Season 1


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Comment: For Star Wars fans, this is a must see :)
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Picture Of The Week - No 33 - US 105mm Howitzers In Action


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Comment: This weeks picture is of United States M2A1 105mm light field howitzers in action during WW2.
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