Thursday, 29 September 2016


Hi- This morning the first batch of Armies In Plastic 54mm figure boxes arrived. Certainly thrilled and extremely pleased by the quality of the AIP figures.

All up - four delightful Boxes.
British, American and two German Infantry.

Part of the British Box figures out in the open.
At this stage possibly tempted to base the figures in threes.

The Germans in Stahlhelm Helmets.
Very pleased with the box artwork from AIP.

U.S. Doughboys.
16 Figures in this box when the usual is I've ordered three boxes of US - I can still base in threes and use up all the figures supplied.

A British Sergeant - Advancing.
The figures are a true 54mm figure.

At this stage I'm very tempted to shelve the production of the Scratch Built Tanks and get stuck into the Figure Painting - though I shouldn't...and try now to finish my WW1 Tanks.

Me (KEV Robertson ) - in London (England) -May 2015.
I'd just come out of St Thomas Hospital after being admitted with Pneumonia.
The warmth of the Sun in the London Park was indeed a moment to be well remembered.
Receiving todays Armies In Plastic figures from the UK- gives me that same good feeling.

Bye for now.
Regards. KEV.


Hi- Shown is the cover of my copy of H.G. WELLS 'LITTLE WARS'. I have enjoyed re-reading this book and over the past thirty years have always found in it's text and captions -charm and enjoyment.

 The 'Battle of Hook's Farm' is where H.G.Wells recounts his memoirs of a delightful engagement with his Toy Soldiers. I find in it endless fascination.

FUNNY LITTLE WARS by Pardre Paul Wright.

This afternoon I arrived home at 2:00pm to find a large envelope poking out of the Letterbox...fortunately the Postman had been after the rain and the envelope was dry. I knew what was in the Envelope....A copy of 'FUNNY LITTLE WARS'....after changing and dressing into something a little more comfortable- I set about reading the book....I had it read by 5:30pm.

I had no real pre-conceived ideas about what FUNNY LITTLE WARS would be like and approached it with an open mind. For all intensive purposes it is meant to present a set of outdoor- garden playing rules which are meant for Pre-1914 Toy Armies. The Rules are most comprehensive and also optional in parts.

At present, because I'm in the midst of my WW1 Project I was looking towards FLW to perhaps provide me with a Rules set which can be adapted to WW1 outdoor gaming. I'm of the mind - now near 9:00pm - that I will not be using the FLW Rules....however that isn't to say I won't be influenced by them to some degree by some of the mechanisms which will help in writing my own WW1 Rules. 

I won't say anymore about FLW - as indeed anyone interested in obtaining the book and it's companion 'LITTLE CAMPAIGNS' -shouldn't have their reading spoiled by my outline of it's contents. Suffice to say - FLW is surely required reading if you intend to try your hand at Garden Wargaming with 54mm Toy Soldiers. 

Bye for now.
(Tomorrow is Tank building- for me).
Regards. KEV.

Wednesday, 28 September 2016


Hi- Progress on my WW1 Project has been steady.
I have ordered a copy of  'FUNNY LITTLE WARS' by Pardre Paul Wright - and also his second volume on LITTLE CAMPAIGNS.

Both FUNNY LITTLE WARS Books should be delivered in about twenty days at the most.
I am particularly hoping that the Rules will adapt and be useful for my WW1 Garden Battles.
I have high hopes for the LITTLE CAMPAIGN Book contents and certainly would enjoy a series of linked Outdoor Battles - rather than just one game alone.

Regarding Rules, I do have a copy of a one page set of Rules by Paul Liddle of the UK- these were written for playing The Franco-Prussian War in 54mm with Toy Soldiers on a Table Top. I like the look of Paul's Rules and perhaps along with FUNNY LITTLE WARS there will be a median which can be devised and will be most suitable for WW1 Garden Battles.

At this point thinking of Rules - I intend not to use Matchstick Cannon for the Battles - I'd rather use the Dice. Perhaps we will be missing out on some of the Wellsian flavour of Little Wars - though it will be easier to play with Dice and save our old aching backs and limbs.

 Above is shown Armies In Plastic - 54mm British WW1 Infantry. I have ordered British, American and German boxes and they should be  delivered in about two to three weeks from now. Very much looking forward to the painting of the 240 Figures in 54mm. Undecided about basing - have a few options- though will wait for FUNNY LITTLE WARS to see the Pardre's suggestions.

Above is shown my first Scratch Built 1/32nd  Scale - British MkV Male Tank for WW1. I have another underway- just started and this coming weekend I should be able to finish this second Toy-like Tank.

                                                     Well that is the update situation.
                                                             A lot of waiting now.
                                                                    Regards. KEV.

Monday, 26 September 2016

TOY British WW1 TANK MkV.

Hi- Did have a good Sunday afternoon and evening at building my first 1/32nd WW1 MkV Tank- finishing up early  this morning with the undercoating and painting.

The completed  British MkV Tank.

(Our 'Lawn' is a bit course- being Buffalo type- come this summer it may be greener and I would have given it a good mowing too- so it should look slightly better).

The MkV in the raw.

I have made the Tank with MDF, Balsa, Radiata Pine, Cardboard and some Styrene.

Top View of the MkV Tank prior to undercoating.

Left-Hand side view.

View of the MkV Tank with a 54mm Soldier for scale.

I have had an enjoyable time making the MkV Tank - I spent considerable time beforehand nutting out how best to go about building it and the choosing of exactly what to use for materials. I must admit that the Toy Tank looks much better to the naked eye than it does in these Digital Photos.


I have contacted all the Participants for the proposed future Garden Battle with great success.

Greg (Mc): whom I've known for over thirty years- although initially reluctant about the whole idea and concept -popped over home today to see my scratch built 1/32nd Tank and he does very much like the look and heavy-chunky feel of the Toy Tank- and has suggested that it's Toy-Like appearance is most appropriate for it's Garden use. I think Greg (Mc) is warming to the Garden Battle Project as he has encouraged me to attempt the building of yet a second MkV British Tank- and also encouraged me to make two German Tanks as well- plus Greg (Mc) has also come up with a good idea concerning the manufacture and placement of Ruined Buildings on the Lawn.
I have chosen Greg (Mc) to be the American General.

Greg (Mc) has put in an unusual request that on the day of the Garden Battle he be provided with a chair to sit on -"and a Valet to move my Soldiers" you see- he's coming around to the idea!

This morning I contacted Peter (M) who lives nearby - whom I've known for over 12 years- and early today he expressed that he was indeed most interested in participating in the future Garden Battle - I've pencilled in Peter (M) for a German Command. Peter (M) told me  that our Canberra War Museum has in fact a German a7 -WW1 Tank on display and added quite a bit more information about Tanks of WW1. Peter (M) is an Historian and Gamer.

Last Thursday I contacted Greg (B) another friend whom I've known since School Days.
Greg (B) is very much into Toy Soldier 54mm having painted up and Gamed on a huge table with his Mexican-American, ACW and WW2 Collections - and he is presently working on his Napoleonic Project - all in 54mm Plastic (with some Metal Figures as well).
Greg (B) is most enthusiastic and keen to participate in my future WW1 Garden Battle.
I've pencilled in Greg (B) for a German Command.


Well pleased with how things are progressing.

Bye for now.
Regards. KEV.

Friday, 23 September 2016

PLANNING Ahead for THE GREAT WAR in 54mm.

Hi- Last night I ordered the book 'FUNNY LITTLE WARS' from England on the suggestion by Tim Gow. ( Tim has inspired me via his Blog upon his WW1 Project and Gaming thereof )....I am hoping that the FLW Rules book may enlighten me upon suitable Outdoor Gaming rules that can be employed directly or adapted to my outdoor WW1 battles.

FUNNY LITTLE WARS by Padre Paul Wright.

54mm Armies in Plastic - British Infantry WW1.

54mm Armies in Plastic- German Infantry WW1

This evening my desire to meet my imagined scope of an Outdoor Battle for WW1 prompted me to order further Armies In Plastic troops. Such that- to date - I've ordered 3 Boxes of British, 3 Boxes of Americans and 6 Boxes of Germans - all for WW1.

At this stage I am thinking that the 240 Figures shall be presented in 'Regiments' of 18 Figures (or 6 Companies - represented by 3 Figures on each 'Company' base) - such that a Player may have 3 Regiments and a Reserve of 2 Companies....N.B. that 1 Figure maybe representative of 33 Soldiers.

Also at this stage of FORWARD PLANNING , I envisage there to be 4 Players for the WW1 Battle on the Backyard Lawn... preparation I have already asked my friend Greg (Mc) who surprisingly stated: "You can count me out!" - most emphatic...though- come the time I will twist his arm and Greg will be involved ( I think he would make an excellent US General).....This evening I asked another friend Greg (B) and he is totally interested in participating....I think Greg (B) would make a excellent German General.

.....I've yet to ask another friend -Peter (M) who is also well known to both Gregs'....I think Peter (M) will jump at the chance to be involved come late Summer....I think Peter (M) would also make for a great German General.

.....I'm choosing to be British as it is my choice- because I'll be painting everything up- yes, a British command will suit me.

A British Mk1 Tank.

Tomorrow I will begin to scratch build a Toy model of a WW1 British MkV Tank in 1/32nd scale....I hope also build a German a7 Tanks as well.

Well that is about it for tonight.
Hope to bring you further news regarding the WW1 Tank production.

Bye for now.
Regards. KEV.

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

MY Interest in 54mm Plastic TOY SOLDIERS.

Hi- Many years ago back in 1967 - my older cousin David gave to me a book- the 1967 LION Annual to keep. At a youthful age I learnt about Toy Soldiers from the Article in the 1967 Annual.
I have provided it here as a Scan -for you to enjoy...(please click on the Images for a larger view).

Of all the pictures that captures the image of Toy Soldiers- this caption of the Royal Horse Artillery Team galloping across the landscape heading this three page LION Article says it all.

There is good mention of  Battles and Wargames.
I like the picture of the 54mm Knights.

All the greats are mentioned such as H.G.Wells and Donald Featherstone.
The figures illustrated in the article are by Britains.

The cover of my LION Annual 1967.

H.G. Wells.
I actually did not own a copy of  H.G. Well's 'LITTLE WARS' until the early 1980s.

H.G. Wells - at 'Little Wars' in England.

I have since found great pleasure reading 'LITTLE WARS' and have long imagined owning such a Collection of 54mm Toy Soldiers - and having Battles in the great outdoors.

Owning a Collection of 54mm Toy Soldiers has escaped me all these years -although I had built many 1/32nd models for the Sydney Toy Soldier Collector Society and was a member during the 1990s....I did make a set of 54mm Australian Navy Officers and Sailors cast in metal and sold a number of Boxed Editions - however, the Navy figures were all pretty static 'Attention' poses and weren't adaptable to having Battles.

WW1 - British in 54mm. The joys of plastic!

 I'm very pleased that my Order for 54mm 'Armies In Plastic' are on their way from England.
Above is shown the WW1 British in Steel Helmets - below are the Germans of WW1 which I have ordered- also I have ordered some US Infantry as well from AIP.
WW1 Germans- 54mm AIP Figures.

At this stage of proceedings I am patiently awaiting delivery of my Toy Soldiers - there will be quite enough figures to do a Skirmish Battle upon my Games Table and also there should be enough Soldiers to attempt an outdoor Battle. I have also ordered a copy of 'Funny Little Wars' and look forward to reading this book and see how well it may be adapted to WW1 Battles.

Bye for now.
Regards. KEV.

Friday, 16 September 2016


Hi- For the past week or so I've been seriously thinking about 54mm Plastic Toy Soldiers for various reasons. I've never really owned a collection as such and now is the time to do something about it. Initially I was thinking about the Boer War or perhaps the Spanish-American War....yesterday I visited a friend who has- over many years built up a  very substantial collection- all mostly in plastic: Mexican-American War, American Civil War and also WW2 - Pacific -Australians and present Greg 'B' - is working on his Napoleonic British and French.

I had been looking at 'Armies In Plastic' sets and last night I settled upon their WW1 range. So this afternoon I fired in an order to the USA for: one box of British ( in Steel Helmets), one box of US 'Doughboys' and two boxes of Germans (in Stahlhelm Helmets)....most pleased to have done this and get things underway- though I may have to wait about three weeks for delivery from the US.

Above is shown the WW1 British.
I have seen these on the Net painted up and they do look excellent.

Above is the WW1 Americans.

The WW1 Germans with Stahlhelm Helmets.

 I have gone with WW1 because I do like the Uniforms and also I think that I can get by with a collection consisting entirely of Infantry for Skirmish type Games Table is 5'6" x 13' which will allow a good area for playing with the 54mm figures....already in the back of my mind -I wouldn't mind scratch building a British Tank in 1/32nd scale...this would be good to do.

After visiting Greg 'B' and his superb collection yesterday I certainly returned home with a good deal of inspiration as to what Toy Soldiers in Plastic is all about. I finally settled on WW1 as for my first hit out with 54mm Toy Soldiers - I would not necessarily need to have Artillery and Cavalry- thus, cutting my expenses considerably.

Who knows - in a month or more I may yearn for further WW1 Soldiers ....and increase the collection to the stage where I may need to consider gaming on the backyard lawn! Anything IS possible.

( The US supplier of AIP sent me a note that it will be awhile before they have the boxes available to post to me...Drats and Double Drats!.....I'm particularly impatient, so I've proceeded to place a second order - though this time with the UK - and this order should be about 2 to 3 weeks away. I have ordered- all up: 2 x British, 2 x American and 4 x German boxes....thus- something like 160 Figures).

Looking forward to this Project ....I should have started this years ago.

Bye for now.
Regards. KEV.