WR’s FOW 1/72 or 20mm basing

WR stated way back in YR2004 with his first Flames of war (FOW) game using Version 1.0 of the rules and supplement books. So WR has seen the many little problems which pop up when using the larger miniature and the FOW rules, all which date back to that YR2004 beginning period. Basing the miniatures quickly came to the forefront. WR couldn’t base the same number of 20mm miniature on their 15mm infantry team basing. So, WR had to make different basing arrangements, keeping in mind the larger basing sizes would have on rules and game play. The thought of collecting the FOW 15mm miniatures wasn’t an option. The WWII collection was all 1/72, 1/76. or 20mm, some painted, with many more unbuilt 1/72 kits and miniatures to construct and paint. So WR knew he was going along his own path, as most FOW gamers locally used the Battlefront 15mm miniatures, and hence the standard FOW basing footprint. After some trial and error, WR came up with the following basing system for his FOW WWI, WWII, and his future Korea war or Vietnam war based collections.

Materials: WR uses basic vinyl or linoleum floor tiles 12″x12″ and 1/8″ thick size for his FOW basing material. The common boxed floor tiles found in most hardware stores for about 80 cents per sheet and comes in various shades or texture design. WR purchases the box of 40 sheets and tends to use the lighter shades of vinyl tile thus making writing the unit identification on base easy to see and read on his FOW bases. With the 1/8″ edge, the ability to finger grip the based miniature aids in miniature movement and avoids grabbing the actual miniatures to shift the based miniatures or vehicle tabletop position every turn. Far in the past WR used thick and dense artist board or wood, such as basswood or balsa for basing, but found the bases tended to wrap. Should note the tile material has a bit of weight feel to the basing vs. wood or paper products. If the vinyl tile bases wrap, a little heat quickly bends them to flat state.

Side note: For his naval ship models (1/700 scale) display and textured gaming sea state base, the darker grey or blue floor tile used.

Tools: Pencils, rulers, small band saw, table sander, hand pliers, wide blade hand file, and plastic bowl or bags for tile cutting debris,

Vinyl or linoleum standard tile sheets (grey and light brown here). Hand pliers, wide hand file, his table sander and band saw equipment. Note the sample infantry base at the sander disc wheel.

Process: First measure out and draw the cutting lines on the tile sheet. using pencils and ruler. The basing size templates are written about / noted below depending on the basing unit. After marking the vinyl floor tile sheet with lines, WR cuts the tile piece with a simple band saw. Hand feed the band saw with material and follow drawn lines. Keep the cutting straight with slight adjustments while cutting and keep fingers clear of the band saw blade. WR typically does two to three sheets at a time, placing excess standard large or small infantry bases, or standard 12″ length strips cut to common widths like 1.75″, 2″ etc. into a future use box. Once the basic shapes cut WR then uses the hand pliers to nip off each base corner to a slight degree. After all bases nicked, the bases are corner sanded to smooth the corner curve using his table sander disc. Basically just smooth the sharp double points at each nicked corner by holding the base material against the rotating sanding disc just lightly. The sander can quickly reduce your vinyl bases to uneven shape,, so lightly goes the process. If no table sander available, WR in his past has used a basic wide hand file to round the nicked base corners. Keep in mind the table sander will create dust and fine vinyl particles of material so WR recommends a common mask while operating the table sander in open air. WR “rounds the corners” lto avoid the hard 90′ angular base corner look on the tabletop and avoids base stacking if the base is slightly turned. Keep those small base corner nick material or larger excess trimming material, in a plastic bowl or tub. WR has found many uses for the odd shaped cut offs including creating ruins and fallen brickwork texture on his FOW bases ( link: Military Trains, Tolley, Ruins and Rubble). This completes the base material process, the next steps are painting the base with paint, applying textured terrain, affixing the miniatures, and label the base with unit identification

Same equipment, just a clear view of the equipment. Sander is a xxxx. The band saw is a xxxx. Vinyl or linoleum tile will dull band saw blase after thousand bases so have spare on hand.

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Other Games YR2019-2020

As WR works on his upcoming 28mm Clash of Empires Battle of Dara 530 AD report, he found several ten photo files of past late YR2019 and YR2020 games unreported on Wargamerabbit. These ten games were either “pick up scenarios”, test game scenarios, or WR found the photo log too incomplete to write up a full AAR blog article. Most are Flames of War games fought out in Russia, in Italy at Salerno or Anzio, the Ardennes Bulge 1944 period, or even in Greece 1941 with fallschirmjager and EW British/Greeks. Other games include a grand 28mm WWI trench assault/raid game at David’s (fellow gamer), and two more 25/28mm napoleonic Peninsular battles. The scenario results or outcome, if WR remembers are noted, many of these scenario battles lasted to the final turns.

In order of blog article appearance, I list the photo grouping, if you wish to scroll for your favorite gaming era. Most miniatures and terrain from the WR collections unless noted from David, Bruce, or Gary’s collections;

1).  Peninsular War 25/28mm Battle of Almonacid 1809

2).  F;ames of War (15mm) German Fallschirmjager airborne landing in Greece

3).  Flames of War (20mm) Ordeal of the 179th Regiment at Salerno 1943 replay

4).  Flames of War (15mm) Panzer Invasion Russia 1941 “Meet the Train: scenario

5).  Flames of War (20mm) Operation Fischfang 1943 Anzio scenario

6).  Flames of War (20mm) Rail yard raid 1943: Soviet Partizans vs. German rail security

7).  Warhammer 1917 “Over the Top” 28mm Trench raid/assault scenario (at David’s)

8).  Peninsular War 25/28mm Battle of Vimeiro 1808 test game

9).  Flames of War (20mm) Bulge 1944 with Pz Brigade 150 with support vs. Americans

10). Flames of War (15mm) Bulge 1944. German Panzers vs. 99th American Division

First up: The Battle of Almonacid 1809 fought between the French and Spanish armies south of Madrid. French advanced from Madrid to confront the Spanish nearing the capital city. This scenario ran true to history with minor adjustment for the scenario notes. WR expects this scenario will become a full AAR scenario post this year.

Almonacid 1809 battlefield looks empty except for formation wooden blocks. These wooden green block saves lots of actual miniature movement till commands approach. Also great fog of war situation too.

When the commands reach deployment range, the 25/28mm napoleonic miniatures are deployed to the tabletop. Here the Spanish on left, the French on the right side of photo.

View from the opposite table end. The French flanking commands are pushing back the Spanish left flank. Castle hill upper right with nearby Almonacid village.

French cavalry charging in to repulse the Spanish weak cavalry attack. Miniature ratio 90:1 or 90 soldiers represents one miniature. Battalions of Infantry, cavalry regiments, or battery.

Later on the Spanish left retired to the nearby orchard. French, Poles, and the German division battalions seek them out.

French infantry battalions pressure the Spanish before Almonacid village and Castle hill. The hill was a linchpin for the Spanish late game defense. The “Yellow” order marker beneath the officer.

A fresh French division arrives marching up the roadway towards Almonacid. French for the win in this test scenario.

Second: FOW German Fallschirmjager landing in Greece 1941. This was WR’s first FOW scenario or game using German glider models. Scenario had German Fallschirmjager land by glider or chutes on the double tabletop. Defending a Greek port was  British infantry company and inland, a Greek infantry company. WR”s air-landing company took the village after hard door to door battles but the Greeks totally owned the Fallschirmjager who landed by their chutes. Miniatures and terrain for this scenario from Bruce and Gary’s FOW 15mm collections. Continue reading