Wednesday, February 12, 2020

War of 1812: Chesapeake campaign - Tidewater House & dairy

I have long coveted the Tidewater House model from Charlie Foxtrot but I've been reluctant to pay the postage for such a large item from the UK. Lucky I was to discover that there would be a dealer at Fall In! carrying the Charlie Foxtrot models. Luckier still that Michael and I had already planned a trip to PA for the convention. Thus, an email was whisked off to Wargames Tools LLC and an order placed for pickup (I'll add that interaction with the owner was pleasant and satisfying). I knew the Tidewater House was a large model but I was taken somewhat aback when I got it home and began to examine the package contents.

Here is the basic shell assembled with a 28mm OG Royal Marine for size comparison. You can see the large footprint of this building (approx 10" x 6"... without the front veranda) that will definitely dominate any skirmish game on a 4' x 6' table. 

The front veranda has been added and the shutters and other architectural details prepped for painting.

I always paint the architectural details separately and attach afterwards (in this case, the green items... the red are for another building). For this building, this step included 54 shutters for 27 windows. Tedious work but worth it in the end.

Various pieces mid-way through the assembly/painting process. Before this there is a fair amount of sanding involved. All sharp edges & corners are sanded (including the shutters etc) before assembly, if possible. This, I believe, is a crucial step in the assembly process. Sharp corners make a model look far too artificial and sanding softens the entire result. I also take the time to apply wood-filler on any areas where the assembly tabs break the natural surface. These are then sanded to match the surrounding area. Most flat areas are also sanded lightly to remove the smooth surface common on mdf. This allows the primer to more properly adhere and in the case of clapboard (as in this case), provides some subtle texture along the boards.

The basic paint jobs and shutters etc attached. Sitting alongside is the Dairy, also from Charlie Foxtrot. The clapboard walls have been primed white (Gesso) and highlighted with GW white contrast paint. The brick building foundation is a printed pattern, sourced on the interwebs and glued straight onto the mdf.

The roofs here have been tiled (with Warbases shingle sheets) and primed black in preparation for dry-brushing.

 The finished and based result! The chimneys have also received the printed brick paper as the foundations. The base, is prettied with various flowers and tufts. The key with ground scatter is, I believe, to enhance the main model, not to distract from it. If the viewer's eye is drawn initially to the basing materials and ground scatter and then to the main model, there is too much of the former! This also applies (and perhaps more so) to figure basing.

And some action shots from a recent game....


  1. What a great posting! Lots of good advice and how to hints. I picked him this model at Cold Wars set year and have been nervous about building it. I think you You have given me the inspiration I needed. Thank you!

  2. Thanks Mark! It's a beast to build and paint but so worth it

  3. Beautiful house and great painting! Great job!