Saturday, July 26, 2014

The Ships Have Docked! German Fleet arrives in good shape.

OK, the ships arrived very nicely sealed and packaged, a total of about 17 days after placing the on-line order on July 6th.  These rapid-prototyped plastics are usually printed to order, so take a bit longer than some of the ships that are pre-made in batches, like the 1/3000 metal ones.  

A sort of bag'n bubble wrap system was used, with the ships in little bags taped to layers of bubble wrap:

Shipping seems to have been relatively uneventful for all the vessels but the Hindenburg [an ill-omened name?]:
The five Kaiser BBs

 Comparison shot of 1916 Kaiser and 1916 Konig - 
can YOU tell the difference?  Yes, that's right:
 the captain's chair cupholder is deeper on the Konig!

 The four Konig BBs

 Three Battlecruisers:  Derfflinger, Lutzow and Hindenburg.  

"Captain, we hit the Memorial Twin Span on our way in!"

The bits at the bottom of the last two picks are from the Hindenburg's mast - three supporting poles and a crows nest of sorts.  An email to Jim gave the option to replace with same, or to replace with a solid mast version [stronger] which is in the works.  I'm opting to wait and see how the solid mast looks.  I may just replace it with wire supports as I don't want someone to break it in play, and wire's the best way.  No big deal, and good customer service from Jim as always.

And here's a great close-up of the Hindenburg's mast:

Hopefully, my ship will fare better!

So the verdict - amazing models, amazing price, amazingly easy to prep.  No trimming, no assembly, half the price of GHQ and I think they look just as nice.  Definitely better than metal which requires a lot more prep.  And of all the stages of wargaming models, I think cleaning and prep the most annoying.  While they seem to be as potentially fragile as metal models, the additional details make them worth the trouble compared to the very robust Panzerschiffe, IMHO.

My personal goal is first to get a German and British fleet ready so I can throw games with a dozen or so ships per side in 3 squadrons of identical ships.  These can be divided into two divisions of two ships as players appear [late, etc] so there's plenty of commands.  But with only three commands per side a single player could also command them.

I'm leaning towards giving the British a numbers advantage - I've 12 Germans, I may go for 16 Limeys, sort of keep a historical percentage.  These are for my initial orders.

However, the ships are so DARN GOOD that I may have to commit to buying everything Jim makes [don't tell him...he'll bleed me dry!] for this theater, but it will also revolve around how many other abandoned gaming projects get sold off to fund this, and of course how often the ships get on the table.

More on preparation and such coming up!


  1. Looking forward to seeing some paint on these fine ships...

  2. that's coming soon. We're going to get a throwback to my WWII Panzerschiffe fleets for the Solomons as we've an anniversary battle of Savo Island coming up. But those techniques will inform and be practice runs for this fleet - which I'd hate to mess up on since the ships are so spectacular!