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Steve's 6mm Corner

Turkish Columns prepare to advance, Battle of Alma, figures from Dave's collection “6 mil” corner is part of the “SAS” website for those of us in the club who are brave enough to dabble in the dark and un-trodden paths of 6mm wargaming. I say “brave” because as you can guess we suffer the slings and arrows of the other members in the club who ridicule and demean this rather neglected figure scale, well, neglected within our club at any rate.

Why 6mm?
For many years I was, and still am, a big fan of 25mm figures, having a rather large collection of them myself. However as time has progressed and the years have taken their toll on my patience I have become progressively more and more fed up with having to spend hour upon hour painting these rather detailed figures. I tried 15mm for a while but gave up on that idea, as they’re really a fiddlier and just as detailed version of 25mm.

“Now”, I hear you say, “surely 6mm figures are even more fiddly than 15mm”, well yes and no. 6mm don’t have the detail that a 15mm figure has so you don’t have to spend hours painting it on. 6mm can be fiddly in as much as they’re small to handle but if you glue them to a say a piece of wood or card before you paint them then this overcomes the problem.

1798 Government Command Stand, figures from Steve's collection

There are several reasons why I chose 6mm:

1. When you put 6mm figures on the wargames table en masse they look as if they’re playing the part of a big army rather than looking like a couple of blokes out on a re-enactment weekend which is the impression that some 25mm or 15mm games give.

2. They’re easy to store. I have 2,000 figures stored in two A4 box files. Each box has two layers holding 500 figures each and they’re sectioned off so that the figures don’t move around when I’m taking them to the club. With my 25mm collection I had to carry two large metal toolboxes and several large cardboard boxes around with me, and that became tiresome I can tell you.

3. When your 6mm figures are painted and based into units they look really good. I have 80 figure units with a frontage of 10 inches per unit and they look like regiments of foot or horse. In 25mm this would equate to about 10 figures, or your “10 blokes out on their re-enactment weekend”.

1798 North Cork Militia, figures from Steve's collection

4. You can make up all sorts of peripheral or “luxury” items that you may not have the time or inclination to do in the larger scales. I have a nice regimental camp scene that adds a bit of flavour to the battlefield. It’s made up of three 4” x 6” sections so it can be as big as 12” x 6” if need be. I have a baggage train consisting of 30 wagons and also a large collection, and still growing (48 so far) of 6mm buildings. These look really good when they’re all placed together giving a proper impression of a village rather than looking like a small hamlet comprising of half a dozen 25mm buildings.

5. I suppose one of the biggest attractions of 6mm figures is that the cost isn’t prohibitive. My two 1798 Irish rebellion armies, one United Irish and one Government, consists of the following: (Prices have been taken from the Baccus web site as at June 2007)

If you compare this to the cost of buying 15 or 25mm figures the cost would work out as follows: (Prices have been taken from the Essex Miniatures web site and the Ian weekly web site for the tents as at June 2007). Artillery numbers remain the same as I have assumed that the same amount of guns will still be required no matter what the scale. However, the tents and wagons I have reduced proportionately to the scale, as I feel space would dictate how many you could have on the tabletop.

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