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Bombard in Progress

I continue to add to my War of the Roses army and the latest project is a Medieval Bombard from Perry’s. It’s a big old beast at nearly 140mm long and so basing it was always going to be a challenge. I have decided to use one of the Sarissa terrain tiles for the purpose. Although it is a bit on the thick side, the irregular edge will help it blend in to the wargames table. I also have vague ideas of adding siege works to either side of the bombard at some stage in the future. The terrain tiles will work well, should I actually do this!

Planning the bombard layout view 1

I decided that I would paint the crew in Edward IV ‘s retinue colours. I thought that only a King would have the finances and resources to bring such a large piece to a battle or seige. Just to be clear, I haven’t done any specific research on this! I just fancied the colours and thought that having a ‘sun in splendor’ motif on the manlet would look cool! Oh! and the fact that I could probably paint the sigil free hand, given my painting abilities…

Planning the Bombard Layout view 2

The only reference picture that caught my eye was the art work for the Zvezda version of the bombard. I’m not sure how accurate this is but there were a few details that I thought that I would add to my model. The first thing that I noticed was that the bombard was mounted on an earth work slope rather than flat on the ground as most of the other models that I had seen. After much thought and debate with friends, I decided that I would go with a fairly flat piece of ground. The Bombard in the Zvezda model was clearly being used in seige work and I wanted my model to be used in a set piece battle. I did like the idea of adding some extra protection for the crew in the form of some Gabions. I also liked the idea of the ‘special tools’ used to load the guns and of course the sacks and barrels lying around so I had it mind to add these.

Cover Art for the Zvezda Bombard

I also noticed that the Mantlet has small wheels allowing the crew to push it forward to facilitate access to the gun barrel for cleaning and loading. So I would add some timbers for the mantlet to run on. The last consideration was whether to make the crew removeable to facilitate game play in Never Mind the Billhooks. The two guys pulling down the Mantlet would have to be fixed but I would make ‘sabot’ bases for the rest of the crew to allow them to be removed if casualties.

Crew painted and ready for basing
View of the painted mantlet

Andy Callan has come up with some instant rules for using the Bombard:

“Huge Bombards fire only straight ahead (no arc of fire) and only on alternate turns but both 5s and 6s are kills. 15 pts inc. crew. Only 3 crew count towards firing dice.”

I think that this early version may be altered to take into account the protection that the crew have and that although only three crew count for dice, there are more to absorb wounds!

Bombard and Crew painted
Top down view of Bombard and crew before basing

As regards the painting details, the crew were painted in my usual style but I have used Army painter inks rather than the quick shade that I sometime resort to. As regards the Gun and wooden block work, I followed a ‘recipe’ that I have used before for siege engines. You can find the detail in another of my blog articles here:

The pictures through out this article show my progress so far. I hope that over the Easter break I will have this model finished and I’ll publish a follow up with a bit more information on how I went about making and painting the base and accessories.

Get ready to fire!


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Happy Modelling!