Monday, 24 February 2020

Jack's Colonial Army

Jack has allowed Bob to take all his Colonial figures so we can have a game with them.  Bob has put all the figures on the table and whilst we have played with them in the past it has been with parts of the collection.  For the first time Bob has put out all the British, Indian and Sudanese and supporting artillery on the table together,  We both think there are some more floating about but even so they look impressive and it is the first time we have seen them like this.  So I went and took some pictures before they go back in their boxes.  

Bob also laid out the Mahdist forces.. Jack painted the overwhelming bulk of these figures over 40 years ago,

The really good thing is that these lovely figures are now available from

Mahdist Forces

Jack made the scratch built the fort.

Friday, 21 February 2020

Jack Takes a Tumble

At the age of 90 Jack decided to do a bit of housekeeping to mop up some water and whilst getting a mop and bucket took a fall and fractured his hip.  Fortunately, because he is an active soul his heart is good and they are planning to operate to support his fracture so that it can heal,

With any luck he will be up and about soon and back home with his family and finishing the wooden model ship he is working on. Once he has had the op Bob and I are going to see him in hospital.  I will keep you updated on progress.

Tuesday, 29 October 2019

Jacklex Miniatures - 1904 Russian Standard Bearer

For many years Bob and I had been on at Jack to make a Standard Bearer for his White Coated Russian army and it had always fallen on deaf ears.  Quite literally at times as Jack's hearing has a nasty habit of coming and going very dramatically!  At 90 you can't really moan.

When we met with Mark Lodge the new owner of the Jacklex range Bob, Jack and I discussed the need for various figures to finish this range and again top of our priority list was a standard bearer.  Imagine my surprise and delight when I return from a family holiday to Portugal to find a small package containing 6 Russian standard bearers.

Now I am still awaiting the operation on my cataract but I thought I would nevertheless give them ago.  Not my finest work but they do add something to Jack's Russian army.  The flags are a free download from the 1866 and all that blog .

Each regiment should have 2 flags but I only had 6 standard bearers for now! 

Needless to say my eye did let me down and I discovered that I had managed to stick one of the flags on upside down!

Wednesday, 25 September 2019

New Jacklex Miniatures Russian 1904 machine gun and crew

In a recent post on the new Jacklex Miniatures range due to be launched in the next few days, I mentioned that Mark Lodge had added a 1904 Russian Machine gun to the Jacklex range as part of a plan over time to fill in some of the gaps in the original range.  Although he kindly sent me a model, problems with the cataract in my left eye prevented me from painting it.

On his way back to Yorkshire, Mark called in on me yesterday and saw Bob and I and a very enjoyable time was had but, more importantly, he brought me a surprise painted Russian machine gun crew and crucially some Japanese reinforcements.

This set has been superbly painted and is a great addition to the range.  Jack himself was really impressed when I showed it to him.

The price of the set if to be confirmed.

Saturday, 14 September 2019

Jack's Japanese Army

About 8 years ago Bob, Jack and I had a game using Jack’s 1904 Japanese, only we used them as Mexican regulars removing their Japanese flags and substituting Mexican ones.

For the past 8 years or so I have been asking Jack what happened to them as I wanted to take pictures of them for the this blog.  They must be in the loft was the common thought as we had looked everywhere else for them.  Jack even sent his grandson into the distant and dirty recess of his loft to try to find them.  He did find some lovely 54mm British colonials – not Jack’s - and a box containing some masters for wagon’s and guns but alas no Japanese!

Jack uses the conservatory at his home for his model making and it is where we sit and discuss the meaning of life, wargaming and from time to time the missing Japanese. Jack’s daughter decided things should be tided up – particularly the floor which was becoming a little crowded.  

Lo and behold, behind some books which were under a glass display cabinet she discovered the Japanese.  Over the years we have all sat next to this cabinet from time to time puzzling over were the figures could be and all the time they were within feet or even inches of our feet!

So I give you Jack’s Jacklex Japanese army.  These were originally available - UPDATE except for the limber teams - but didn’t all make it into the Spenser Smith site but hopefully should be available at some point through the new Jacklex website which launches on 30th September.

I painted them in Blue uniforms to add a little variety

As mentioned in the introduction, the last time these figures were on the gaming table they doubled up as Mexican regulars by changing the flags

Saturday, 24 August 2019

The Phoenix Rises – The Return of Jacklex

A couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of finally meeting Mark Lodge the new owner of the Jacklex range of 20mm figures.  I had been in touch with him on the phone and by email and it was good to put a face to a name.

We met at Jack’s and had an enjoyable time sitting in his garden and exchanging wargame tales.  However, the real purpose of the meeting was to take the opportunity to go through some of the piles of moulds in Jack’s garage to try find any missing figures or moulds to help complete the Jacklex range.  To Mark’s huge delight not only did we find some moulds but we were able to find some of Jack’s masters for the wagon’s and guns.  These were truly stunning.  When you consider they were made over 50 years ago in plastic the detail on things like the barrels on the Gardiner Gun or the structure of the Wagons was amazing and tell of Jack’s skill as a model maker and craftsman.

What all this hunting around means is that the relaunch of the Jacklex range complete with it’s own website and logo (see below) at the end of September will see the most extensive range of these lovely figures ever.

Mark's aim is to try, over time, to fill in some gaps in some of the ranges by producing some conversions/new additions.  To date these include a wheeled machine gun and crew for the Russians in the Russo-Japanese war (or for imaginary struggles with the British on the North-West Frontier), together with a Russian Standard bearer.  In the Boer War series there are Staatsartillerie Pom Pom gun with limber mules and crew and the Pom Pom gun with its field crew.  Mark kindly sent me a set of these figures and but for the cataract that has appeared in my left eye I would have painted them for these pictures.  Unfortunately, I do not think that I can do them justice at the moment tempting though it is to give them a go!

Once upon a time there was a diorama in the  Harrow Model shop of a Pom Pom gun and it's crew.  

(photo of Harrow Model Shop diorama)
The moulds for this had disappeared in the midst of time so it is wonderful to see Mark's beautiful recreations  

The prices for these and the standard infantry and cavalry figures is to be confirmed, but I thought I would wet your appetite by showing some pictures.

In case you haven’t come across it, the South African Military History Society have lots of information on their website on the First and Second Boer Wars and later wars, including information on uniforms for the Stastsartillerie

Wednesday, 21 August 2019

Happy 90th Birthday

Just to announce that Jack is 90 on 22nd August (tomorrow)
and still building models and wargaming.

Happy Birthday Jack!