Saka Light Cavalry

Saka Light Cavalry

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Leven Miniatures 6mm Smock Windmill

I've had this model for a couple of months even though it is only just released. Mike over at Leven Miniatures is a real gent and I get the chance to buy some of the soon to be released items from his per-sale stock. This is stock that is testing the moulds not that the buildings are in any way less perfect than the standard sale items. Indeed I imagine once Mike is happy with the products these models enter stock. I think it is a case of testing the moulds for ease of production (release of models and any extra wear on the mould. I.E no production snags. Anyway I get the buildings a bit early and Mike gets to use the images I send him on his site so both of us are happy.

I instantly liked this windmill, I've been after one for awhile. Peter from Baccus used to do one that was just perfect but he sold off the range a few years back but the buyer has never released any of the range so it looks lost to history. This one though is not a bad replacement at all, it fits for the ECW, though that Baccus one was perfect, and also it a great fit for our Napoleonic games outside of Spain. Indeed I can see one of these babies making it onto the Waterloo boards.

The windmill comes as a four piece kit, the base, then the wooden body with the rails, then the cap (my brown bit) and last the sales (these have a couple of copper wires running through them which is an excellent touch to add strength at an otherwise weak point.

This windmill is another great price at just £2.50 a model and is well worth the cost. The casting was very clean and required no clean up. One section of the sale had a little extra resin which I left in place as I was trying to get it all painted up quickly but beyond that it was perfect.

I love the texture that Mike adds to his buildings and this one is no exception. If you look at the image above you can see the cap (what is this bits name anyway?) has had a light drybrush for a nice textured finish and the hand rail and walkway both have enough raised surface to help bring the worked effect to the wood. Whilst this is great for when you want this finish it can be a nightmare when you don't. This makes the wood panelling of the windmill so much the nicer as this is nice and smooth and fits the bill for a well finished windmill. A bumpy surface would have spoilt the end result.  

The windmill stands 50mm to the top of the cap excluding the height of the sails so is reasonably commanding in height. I have mounted mine on a 60x60 base with a 30x60 and 30x30 base on top of this and finally another 30x30 base on top of these to give it a hill kind of effect. All told I think I spent a little over two hours in total on the whole project but if I had spent more time I would have carved out the bases a little to break the corners more. Not that it is fully finished as I plan to add a horse and cart and a few civilians to the base just for more interest.

I used my new basing system on this base and added a nice hedged road to just finish it off. I have to admit that I am not a little happy with how it turned out. I base painted the wooden boards with off white then painted  fairly this normal white over it, the effect was to highlight the wooden boards and it has a slightly irregular finish to the boards that suits the mill without it looking scruffy. The bottom section I went with several coats of white so it's uniformly white, I figure it's easier for the chap to paint than all the way up to the top.

I have also recently finished another Regiment of Prussians so will run a post on how they were based up to answer a recent question regarding how I base up the new guys.


  1. The model and basing is top notch Ian.

  2. What a lovely piece of kit and only 50mm tall you say - that's impressive.

  3. That's terrific, I really like the basing.


  4. Looks great. For me it is the basing that puts this over the top as well. Beautiful work.

  5. I'm just going to repeat what everyone else has said, lovely model and very nice basing, sets it off perfectly.


  6. That looks excellent! Love the base, and as you say, the Leven miniatures have great surface details.

  7. Looks like you guys have a lot of fun with your hobby. I use to paint ceramics way back in the day. It was relaxing. Stress relief, too.

  8. @ Fran, thanks, Lee deserves the credit on the basing as it is his system which he taught me.

    @ Andras, thanks, it's the way most of my buildings will be based going forward and indeed back as I base the others up as well.

    @ Michael, actually only just measured it and it's 48mm tall so about covers it I guess.

    @FMB, thanks, again it's Lee's system, though he does it better as you will see as he starts work on the buildings and boards for Project Waterloo

    @ Sean, Thanks, I am starting to have a lot of fun with messing around with the bases. I am building a German/Austrian town out of 60x60 bases and it wants to be very tight so looking forward to showing it off as I get further into it.

    @ Ubique Matt, again thanks, this post has had a lot of hits so really happy with the response.

    @ Smillie, Thanks :-)

    @ Leif, Yes they do and I took delivery of a few buildings this week that make everything he has released so far seem like child's play. I was knocked out by the detail but you will have to wait a few days before I let the building out the bag.

    @ Happy, It's great for stress and a few other heath problems too. I'm not sure I would still be here if not for the painting. One thing it does do is slow down the heart rate which in turn slows down the breathing as you need to be calm to paint well. I really enjoy that side of the hobby nearly as much as getting that game in. In fact if the guys I play were not such great guys I would probably just paint the figures.