Wargame Rules

I have set up this blog for my wargaming interests in the Muscovite-Tartar Wars, Reconquista Wars, the Barbary Coast Pirates, and the early campaigns of the Ottoman Turks and Saracens. Some lesser known crusades will also be covered. Miniatures are mainly 28mm with a growing collection in 54mm. If my photographs serve to encourage others to complete their collections I shall be pleased. I will also be mentioning other sites with interesting collections on the above. Do join the 'Friends' if you like what you see.

I prefer to use my own rules which are kept simple and involve eight-sided dice. These allow for fast results with various types of weaponry. Morale dominates my games.

Tuesday, 9 April 2019

54MM MEDIEVAL FOOT SOLDIERS (Part Eight, Chinese-made)

Have just completed several Medieval banners for my Ghibelline and Guelph armies in 54mm scale. The first is a unit of spearmen in the service of Guido Bonacolsi, Captain General of Mantua, a supporter of the German Emperor. The second unit are Visconti Milanese, supporting the Papacy and France. Also included is the Emperor with a small unit of Imperial pikemen. Practically all these figures are modern, cheap Chinese imports. Painted up, they provide useful foot soldiers to serve with the W. Britains Herald knights. MGB

Monday, 11 March 2019

54mm Medieval Bombard for Wargames

Decided to convert a spare 28mm bombard into something for my 54mm collection. The carriage has been altered, the barrel is made of plastic tubes, the axis is also plastic with a steel rod for added strength. The wheels were originally Playmobil ship's wheels I picked up in a charity shop. Miliput and some faux jewellery created the hubs. I think its come out quite nicely, and for a total cost of about £5.50. The gun crew are mainly Britains Herald figures, repainted and varnished. Still to decide whether to base this piece, or not. MGB

Wednesday, 27 February 2019

54MM ARCHERS, Forming Up (Part Six)

This was a real pleasure to simply tidy up the original paintwork, and add some paint to the quivers and arrows, a more authentic colour for the shoes, waistbelts and scabbards, and some facial detail. Easily done, this work added so much to the Herald 54mm figures. The first unit are Milanese, but will also serve as English in other theatres. The second group, in yellow, will be attached to the Emperor's Ghibelline army. Only one bow was missing in these acquisitions and it was no great problem to drill the hand to accept some thick wire in its place, and I allowed myself a more authentic colour bow. Commanding the Milanese is a Britains Deetail knight, they do look the part as high ranking personnel. This collection is principally a restoration project, with occasional upgrading. MGB

Sunday, 24 February 2019


The Britains Herald Range of medieval knights comprises four mounted figures and two barded horses: the latter available in two cloak colours per horse.The original shields, as previously mentioned, were supplied with rather poor stuck-on transfers, which quickly fell off. Fortunately, the plain shields lend themselves perfectly for more authentic heraldry to be painted on, and varnished for protection. Concerning the lances, made of plastic, they can be best described as unimpressive. I decided to apply my own. I cut away the original hand guards, and drilled them to accept steel rods which I already use for standard bearers in my 28mm armies. Additional hand guards were supplied by halving the beads of a neckless which belonged to my late mother, and they work perfectly in this role. I should record, two horses arrived broken from their bases. A steel nail was internally drilled, and then supper glued to provide a very secure join. Here are a few photos of those ready for service. The first shows Ghibelline cavalry, and then some Guelph cavalry. The final photo shows the poor state of the plastic lances, no point saving them in my opinion. MGB

Thursday, 21 February 2019

54MM Airfix Mounted Archer (Part Four)

In purchasing several job lots I picked up an Airfix longbowman and a rather small pony. Keen to make use of them both, I thought combining them might make an interesting model. Have joined the torso to the legs of a cheap Chinese rider, added a spare buckler and sword scabbard, and nailed the whole to the pony. Having applied a coat of yacht varnish for protection, I think its a fun addition. By the way, the Airfix figure was a few millimetres less in height when placed next to the Britains Herald medieval figures, fine on the table, but not so good in the same unit. MGB
Here is the original Airfix archer, which had been previously painted without a primer!

Monday, 18 February 2019

54MM Colleoni or Coglioni, its all a load of bollocks (Part Three)

The famous condottiere Bartholomeo Colleoni had an illness which gave him three testicles. With his surname being also similar to coglioni (testicles in Italian), this warrior knight decided to use a distinctive coat of arms. I'm rather pleased with this addition to my 54mm collection. Its a spare Herald Range knight, with a spare Swoppit Range horse, an unwanted Deetail Range saddle & Cloth, with an ornamental plume taken from a Crescent Range helmet. I also had to construct, and pin a replacement ear. There is something very pleasing about bringing odds and spares together to make something interesting. I have drilled and fixed a steel nail to ensure all is quite firmly together, just got to source out a suitable base. MGB

Sunday, 10 February 2019


The rough, hurried paintwork found on W.Britains Herald Range of knights is still a very convenient resource, and any efforts to improve or restore the paintwork is no great inconvenience. Many of the castings were made in a steel (occasionally silver) coloured plastic which actually looks quite good. As a rule, its not my intention to radically replace the original 1970s artwork. Unfortunately, the paper-transfer shield designs rarely survive, but as these designs look more appropriate as comprehensive school blazer badges I have little incentive to keep them anyhow. Having taken care to prime just the cleaned shields, I have now painted on Guelph and Ghibelline designs belonging to Italian states and rulers. Many of these 1968-76 figures arrive with mismatched bases, or plastic sheet replacements, or no bases at all. I have sought to correct this irregularity with a general redistribution. Fortunately, the plastic sheet bases are a good, working alternative, and two units of Heralds now use this option. By the way, warped Herald bases will typically return to their correct shape if placed in hot water, and then rested on a cold surface. So here are some of the new, old Herald knights. I have only had one complete loss so far, an archer had probably been dipped into paint stripper and it had destroyed the integrity of the plastic, causing constant peeling. I must confirm, its been a real pleasure restoring these figures, and an even greater pleasure now owning once more some childhood toys. MGB