Tuesday, January 17, 2012

ACW Riverine ... Part V

Somewhat belatedly - and with apologies for my tardiness - here are some pics of my riverine craft with my Airfix figures by way of comparison. The tape measure in the background gives some clue to the dimensions of the vessels, but I will give some actual figures in another posting.

The heading picture was set up to show the potential for introducing a pseudo-perspective to pictures using the disparate scales between figures and models. The CSA artillery here, by the way, are a couple of scratch-made 20pr Parrotts, and a Whitworth muzzle-loading rifle. Well, that's what I call them anyhow...

In the above picture you can compare very roughly the relative sizes of the vessels. The tape measure in the background is only a rough guide, as the Carondelet should be only 180mm (representing 180ft) in length, as is the nearer steam ship. The gunboat has a 52mm beam.

The CSS Tennessee is 200mm long by 45mm wide (approximately); the tugboat 100mm long; the mortar barges 60mm. All the vessels are intended to be 1:300 scale, or close to it.

Note the comparison between the 1:76 scale figures and 1:300 scale vessels. Quite a difference. But together on a table top in combined operations, they look surprisingly compatible.

Finally, I've included a picture of republished copy of Thomas Scharf's book (originally published c.1887) History of the Confederate States Navy. Considering the lack of resources, and the enormous odds the CSN had to contend with, they did surprisingly well, and this volume is commensurately interesting.


  1. Looks great! Ships in operation are normally seen at a distance anyway. The main trick will be making sure any river is wide enough to accomodate them.

    I like the Airifx figures too!

    I anticipate the 1st shots of the Annapoloosa Campaign to be fired this weekend and am being forced to have some steam boats operate just off table due to the lack of suitable models. I'll have to make a not to check back here when the time comes to build some.


  2. Thanks for your comment, Ross. I'll include some dimensions in another posting shortly - probably in the form of 'ship cards' for my One-Brain-Cell Rule set.

    Decently wide waterways are the trick, of course. I haven't yet figured out a suitable form for this. In past games, the river was represented by having part of the table left bare.

    Having said that, not all waterways in which gunboats operated were so very wide. The Union naval operations on the Red River were stopped cold when the Confederates blocked the stream by placing a steamship athwart the passage with the bow firmly aground on one bank, the stern equally immovable on the opposite.

    Rear-Adm Porter was most impressed.

  3. Looks great, especially the forced perspective in the first pic. Underscale buildings often work well in our games, why not underscale ships and boats, too?

  4. Magnificant ships and lovely to see the Airfix figures and guns (?) too- excellent project proceeding so well!