When I started to build units for the British army for Egypt I saw the potential to use these units in numerous coastal operations in Holland, France, Spain and Italy. As I was mulling this over I remembered a couple of episodes from the Hornblower TV series, "The Dutchess and the Devil" and "Loyalty", where Hornblower had been involved in some sort of attack on a Spanish and French fortresses and I had an idea. Why not build some sort of coastal fortification? It didn't need to be some huge fortress, maybe just a shore battery that might guard a harbour entrance.
I quickly formed some sort of visual in my head, but any coastal fortification needs guns, what could I use? So I dug around a bit on the web for some images of fortress guns and found this one.
I figured that this could be pretty simply built from plasticard on which I could mount some of the spare gun barrels left over after the work with the Victrix French and British artillery sets that I had been wanting to find a use for. So with the paints put away for a few days I got to work.
The first step was to mark up and cut the basic shapes for the carriage sides, 20mm wide and 10mm high, from plasticard.
Next was to cut out the "steps" at the rear of the carriage, scribe the wood grain and round some of the corners.
Then the holes were drilled for the axles and the hollow made in the base of the cartiage sides with a rat-tail file.
The base of the carriage measured 18mm long and was cut 7mm wide at one end and 5mm at the other.
The basic form was glued together and the axels, made from various left over weapons and rods from recent plastic projects, were installed.
Wheels were then cut from two different sized plastic tube and glued in place.
The French 12lb gun barrel was prepared and then fixed to the carriage.
The fortress mount was then cut and assembled.
...or back in its loading position.
A little bit of filling with liquid Green Stuff concealed a number of gaps on barrel and the wheels. I then made a second gun, this time using a British 9lb barrel.
Next I set about creating a base for the model. Here things took a twist. I decided that I wanted to do three models for French service and three for Spanish, but I wanted to create just one fort for both sets. So the guns are going to be based as modules that can simply be "plugged in" to the model. This is what I came up with.
Each gun will be a self contained module, complete with a masonary front and a wooden track for the trail wheels to run along when the gun is traversed. I used some spare plastic bases that shipped with the Perry plastic cavalry as the basic construction material beacuse as a precision manufactured piece they will suit the plug in idea best. The masonary is some left over plasticard from other projects and the rimber track is Green Stuff. The base remains unfinished because I want to mount crew on the base and the crew haven't arrived yet, but the rest of the base will be textured as packed earth as appears in the first image in tgis post.
The next thing to tackle is how all of this will fit into the larger fort.