The Waving Flag: 15 mm ACW Command

Wednesday 2 October 2019

15 mm ACW Command

At the end of August I posted the result of one of my impulse buys from Britcon: a set of 18 mm Confederate generals from AB Figures. I really enjoyed painting something other than my usual medieval figures. I enjoyed it so much that I decided to try painting a few more.

A little research led me to order a selection of figures from Warrior in Scotland. I liked the fact that each figure had been photographed and I also liked the look of the sculpting which wasn't too fussy. The prices are low and excellent value plus delivery was superb; my small order arrived next day!

I bought both mounted and foot command figures as well as a selection of rank & file advancing figures. Here's the results of my first efforts on unfinished bases:

The level of detail on these figures is just right and the horses were a pleasure to paint.  I also got to practice mixing "shades of grey".

The main reasons for my purchase was to see how I'd manage painting what turned out to be quite small figures; especially compared to those I've been painting recently. The figures are not "true" 15 mm figures. I'd class them as 16.0 - 16.5 mm in overall size and heft. They are certainly not 18 mm.

I also wanted to see how the infantry flags would look and try basing some foot for Fire & Fury. Here you can see how they look with the over sized flags I settled on and, as it turned out, with an over sized unfinished base:

Basing Quandary
I must comment on my attempts to base these on standard Fire & Fury bases.  Before I do I'd like to applaud the rules' authors for listing the main basing requirements clearly on their web site.

The standard frontage is 25.4 mm (or 1.00" in the colonies) and I bought a selection from LaserCraftArt in the UK but was soon swapping them for a set of 30 mm frontage bases.

I just could not get the figures to fit on a 25.4 mm base without them looking like they were banging in to one another.  This was the same with both the command figures and the advancing rank and file figures I'd bought. Base depth for infantry isn't an issue at 19.5 mm (or 0.75") it's just the frontage. The above infantry bases are 20 mm deep.

Now I might have struggled on with 25.4 mm frontages had I not tried a dry run basing the cavalry on the standard 25.4 mm square bases (before I stuck them to their round command bases).

Not only was 25.4 mm far too narrow for two cavalry figures, I couldn't even stagger the figures (a look I detest) because of the lack of depth.  Switching to 30 mm square bases allowed me to base the cavalry side by side plus they no longer hang over the base which will protect them from damage in use and in storage.

Now frontages aren't that important in Fire and Fury: a point repeatedly made by the authors.  Neither is base depth.  The only requirement is that the frontages are the same which is a refreshing and eminently sensible approach by the rules' authors.

My only potential problem is that, should I play against an opponent using standard basing we'll have to come to an agreement to account for the extra 5 mm width.  Having said that this should not be too difficult.  It's either that or I'll have to paint both sides.

Flags & Research Links
Here are the image files that I used. Feel free to download and create your own flag sheets:

Second bunting issue

Third bunting issue

The central brown section looks really wide in the above images but I set the width so that the central section would be 4 mm wide with a flag 17 mm high.  This ensures that it fully covers the flag pole and looks like it's hung from three white straps.

A 17 mm high flag is grossly oversize for 15 mm figures but is very striking on the table.  If you want different sized flag you will need to adjust the width of the brown section.  Make it larger if you want smaller flags (the model flag pole remains the same circumference).  Likewise reduce it you want larger flags.

To help cut out flags with a white border, it's a good idea to add a light grey border to the images when preparing your flag sheets for printing.  Most drawing packages, and word processors like Microsoft Word, allow this with just a few extra clicks.

Finally here are a couple of links I found useful:

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