Saturday, 21 June 2014

6mm Napoleonic battlefield fortifications

Over the years, I have made or bought various types of redoubts or field fortifications for my 6mm Napoleonics. Hopefully this is a useful run though what is available (that I am aware of) or what you can make.

To note I haven't painted artillery for my Russians yet so throughout I have Austrian artillery defending against Poles and in one case some Saxon cavalry - for my full Pole and Saxon forces check out my earlier post here.


These are from Irregular Miniatures and I got them about 30 years ago but they still sell them. I am not at all keen on their figures but they do some useful scenery and it is a big range.

I plan to get some more and make some table level defenses (i.e. rather than the versions seen below which are raised up on hills etc.) with prepared gun positions, although I will probably keep some to just use as seen in the pictures.

The Great Redoubt at Borodino - version 1.

I converted this from a hill many years ago (one of the polystyrene covered in static grass ones you can buy ready made). The trench was made by applying liquid poly glue until it had melted a trench of the right size and depth. The log barricade is made from cocktail sticks. The spiked logs from bits of twigs with pins pushed through. Logs painted and various bits of scatter material added.

In various rules though I need a 6 gun Russian battery so I have always been on the look out for a larger version (see later).

Simple log barricades

At the same time I built the redoubt above I also did a low hill with a couple of simple log barricades added. When I get round to it I want to do some more of these but on low bases for increase flexibility when using on the wargames table.

The Great Redoubt at Borodino - version 2.

This is actually a 10mm model from Old Glory. As shown it is not quite as it comes and there is a lot of enhancement from the base model:
  • The original resin 10mm model came in 3 pieces, but the front of the model is actually the far side of the ditch in my modified version. The back was also a steep drop. Overall the original was about 7cm deep and the same depth across the entire length;
  • I stuck the 3 pieces on to some plasticard I cut out to the shape I wanted - so that there was more depth at the front of the redoubt. At its deepest it is about 19cm from front to back;
  • I then cut out pieces from a 1cm thick sheet of styrene to make the front slope, leaving a gap for the trench. The styrene was cut with a hot wire cutter (small ones are easy to find in models shops and are pretty cheap);
  • The trench was then textured using Polyfilla Woodflex. I also used the Woodflex to get a more gentle slope at the real;
  • I then applied white PVA glue to the front and rear slops and covered in sand (I use a sharp sand from a DIY shop sifted to get the bigger stones out);
  • While the sand was still drying I used a large wooded skewer to make the round pits on the front slope;
  • The ground was painted and flocked in the same sort of way as shown in my basing tutorial. The difference being the last drybrush being Games Workshop bleached bone (now Ushabti bone) rather than white.

I bought this rather than scratch build as I was busy with other things. I was a lot bigger than I was expecting! But other than the gabions being somewhat large compared to the men (and mostly because it is difficult to imagine how they would get them in position rather than looking completely out of place) it does fit the scale pretty well (and I am not sure how you could fit a based 10mm artillery pieces on the gun platforms).  I intend to use for scenarios where it is just about the fighting for the redoubt rather that a wider area of the Borodino battlefield.

Total Battle Miniatures 6mm redoubts.

TBM brought out a range of redoubts for 6mm a year or so ago. Deciding to do this post actually got me to finish them off! (see link on my scenery links page)

This is the larger of the two small ones that come as a single piece. It looks quite nice but I prefer the larger ones - the ditch and grass slope in front just give a better effect. As noted above, I intend to build some small redoubts like this from Irregular Miniature gabions and on low level bases.

You can get two large redoubts that are multi-piece. I did toy with the idea of putting them on a base and filling in the gaps, but while this would look better it also reduces the flexibility that the different parts provide. I bought two - the large and the very large one. Some pictures first of the very large one being attacked by the Poles.

Finally, just a few pictures showing the different configurations possible with the different pieces:

1 - the vary large one as sold:

2 - taking out one of the pieces (could be either left or right one)

3 - the large one as sold (but obviously you can also make that from the very large one by taking out two of the pieces)

4 - a small redoubt just using the end pieces

I hope you enjoyed reading.

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