Saturday, August 20, 2016

Battle of Riachuelo: Paraguay Ships

I finished painting and basing the 1:1200 Pithead Miniatures, Battle of Riachuelo Paraguay ships.  I decided to go with a muddy colour base as the ParanĂ¡ River is a muddy colour.  Something different from the usual naval wargaming blue we naval gamers use.

Note the small ships are small boats/barges called Chatas.  These were built to only carry a 68pdr or 80pdr gun.  The Chatas had no propulsion, so had to be towed.

I chose to not do full ship lines or ratlines.  I figure at this scale just a representation is sufficient.  The areas on the ships where there are ship boats on the sides, I did not want to struggle fitting in the ratlines.  Who knows, maybe later I will.

Flash and non-flash photos below.  Shows how they look in different lighting.


Blog post on Brazilian ships: Link

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

The Military Museums of Calgary

Another interesting site I visited in Calgary last month was "The Military Museums."  It is an odd name for a military museum, but looked like a single museum to me and probably needs a different name in the future.  The museum has all the Canadian forces represented and was a great museum to visit.

Initially trying to get to the museum was a bit challenging since the nearest highway exit to the museum was under construction.  I spent two hours visiting in the morning and unfortunately I did not have enough time to really take it all in.  I recommend more time.  Maybe 3-4 hours.

The best parts of the museum are the regimental history sections and the naval section.  The weakest areas in my opinion are the gallery and air force.  Maybe I just had less interest in the current art on display and the aviation history (lots of model airplanes though).

There is an additional building that houses three airplanes: a F-86 Sabre, CF-18 and a CF-104.  Also, there is a tank park with a few WWII tanks.  It looks like the T-34 tank is a new one, which needs a new fresh paint job.

A disappointment for me was the gift shop, it was really lacking in all departments.  The best surprise was the naval section.  It was so much bigger than I was expecting, plus has had lots to look at.  Also, tucked away in a room was display cabinets of all the Canadian Army regimental uniforms of WWI (I think).  That was impressive.

I really enjoyed this museum and hope to visit it again in the future.  I recommend visiting this museum if you are in Calgary.  Don't be rushed like I was.  Give yourself enough time.

A lot of my photos show uniforms and model ships, I guess for reference at some point, but I tried to get a good variety of pictures.

Here are all the 46 pictures I took: Photos Link

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Historical Reenactment in Alberta, Canada

On my trip to Alberta last month, I discovered a small reenactment was happening close to where I was staying.  Here are pictures from the event in Didsbury, Alberta.




Thursday, August 4, 2016

The Sentry Box Store in Canada

On my trip to Alberta last month, I visited the gaming store The Sentry Box in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.  I had heard it was the store to visit in Calgary and that it was big.  Well I can confirm both.  I spent 2.5 hours looking around the store.

I went in the front door and you look down on the main floor of the store.  It turns out that the main floor basically has the non-historical specific stock. This includes paint, dice, terrain, boardgames, non-historic miniatures, card games, novels, etc.  I skimmed through this area fairly fast.  Then I discovered the stairs leading up to the historical room.  Wow...impressive.  I have not been in many gaming stores around the world, but the historical section is big.

The prices on everything was weird.  All the prices are listed in US dollars, but they have sheets up around the store showing the daily conversion rate to Canadian dollars.  Everything was retail price, except maybe for old stock they were looking to dispose of.

In the historical room there was a fair amount of old stock of miniatures (i.e. lots of Minifigs US 10mm or 15mm).  As you can see from the photo, Flames of War is well represented.  A good amount of box chit wargames.  They have a good selection of the old JR Miniatures terrain, but I did not need anything they had, except for one 10mm building.  The used book section was good.  I was impressed with their naval wargame section.

This is a must visit store!  I wish Denver (twice the size of Calgary) had a store like this.  Is there a store larger than this and has a better military gaming section?

To see more photos of the store, check out their web site: