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"Space 1889 gunboats" Topic

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Personal logo John Treadaway Supporting Member of TMP20 Jun 2012 6:06 a.m. PST

OK, I'm sure I'm not the first to ask this, but does anyone do any Space 1889 Gunboats (Aphids, Hullcutters etc) as models other than the nasty plastic ones in the (now long out of production) boxed set.

In any scale.

Yep I know Game Tech* did some way back and I'd quite like to get hold of some (along with some hen's teeth and rocking horse doo-dah). But what I would ideally like is some in 1/300th.

I had a mind to make some (having made some in 28mm link ) and – I'm sure if someone did and offered them for sale, there'd be a market.

I've tried contacting Frank Chadwick about the chance to do this but – other than a positive response 5 years ago – he's said nothing since and I've (mostly) given up asking (if he even said 'no', plain and simple, that'd be a start, but I get no answer whatsoevever when I've asked in the last two or three years).

So I'm back to:

a) Does anyone already make these in any scale?

b) If not does anyone have any old Game Tech* ones of any scale for sale (at sensible prices)

c) Does anyone think there'd be a market for high quality kits in resin and (probably) an etched brass fret in 1/300th (Aphid around 3 inches long, put your own 1/300th crew and guns on from any of the miriad manufacturers in that scale).

Just asking

John Treadaway

* I think

Tom Reed Supporting Member of TMP20 Jun 2012 6:21 a.m. PST

1/300th? That would be so cool! As far as I know no one is making gunboats right now. The Game Tech ones were cool, and IIRC, the maker was selling off what he had left a couple of years ago.

Dragon Gunner20 Jun 2012 6:24 a.m. PST

Highlander Studios is making them in 15mm.

Personal logo StoneMtnMinis Supporting Member of TMP20 Jun 2012 6:32 a.m. PST

We have the many of the old Lyzards Grin models still in stock. Email us for a list and prices.


Jamesonsafari Inactive Member20 Jun 2012 7:00 a.m. PST

I think 28mm and 15mm would be the most commercially viable scales tp fit with existing armies etc. although a 1/300th 'fleet scale' could get some excited.

streetline Inactive Member20 Jun 2012 7:01 a.m. PST

1/300th would be very cool. That aside, I think Highlander are planning on making them in 1/1200 and 1/100, and I've ordered gunboats to the UK from Stone Mountain a while back and got an excellent service at a good price. and could do with more, but another time….

Personal logo John Treadaway Supporting Member of TMP20 Jun 2012 7:12 a.m. PST

Thanks for the info gents. Having done them in 28mm, 15mm (or 1/100th) would be too much of a replication, I figure.

Dave I'll have a look at a list but my answer to that might be 'what ya got?' rather than the other way around but I'll look into it.

I'll check out Stone Mountain too – thanks fo rthe lead on that.

All of you: I think 1/300th is the perfect compromise: big enought to do actual guns and crew on deck, while small enough (my calculations are 3 inches for an Aphid, 4 inches or so for a Hullcutter up to around 6inches for a Reliant or Skylord) to put on a 5 inch Hotz Mat hex cloth (of which we have some.

The quick play rules we developed (see link earlier) means we can have a good game running ssveral gunboats per player and still finish in a couple of hours. That's what I want to do so although the 1/300th route is still my ambition I'll se what else I can do mean time.


ming31 Inactive Member20 Jun 2012 7:28 a.m. PST

Know Parroom station has a martian cutter racing game in 28 mm with boats .
At historicoin couple years ago some one had a lage game of GDw" gunboats in 28 mm

streetline Inactive Member20 Jun 2012 8:33 a.m. PST

Just to clarify – Stone Mountain and Historical are the same folks..

SBminisguy20 Jun 2012 8:35 a.m. PST

@John Treadaway -- great idea! I've wanted to see this happen for years as well. I think the main issue is licensing, rather than necessarily scale, if they are going to be "official" Space 1889 figures. 1/300 would be cool, but 1/600 would also let you leverage a large number of model/hobby terrain, 19th century ship figures, etc. I know some GREAT "traditional" sculptors linked through someone already producing 1/600th naval (and the primary guy LOVES Space 1889), doing that or 1/300 may not be a stretch. Shoot me an email, I can put you in touch and see what happens, jcunningham9 AT yahoo DOT com.


dampfpanzerwagon Fezian20 Jun 2012 8:52 a.m. PST

Hi John,

As you well know the 1/300th masters were made some time ago, but without the agreement of Frank the whole project fell at the first hurdle.

I have 'plodded along' with my own designs but quite frankly – have never pursued the option of copying the original Space 1889 models in 1/300th scale due to copyright issues.

I've included a (well used) link to my own 1/300th scale Aeronef/Space 1889 project that continues to tempt me.


dampfpanzerwagon Fezian20 Jun 2012 8:53 a.m. PST


Some inspiration.


DerKrampus20 Jun 2012 9:22 a.m. PST

The plastic gunboats and martians are bad- but if you put some work into them (mainly adding some details to the hulls) they are decent.I use the plastci martians for Aeronef, and I have almost every metal model that was produced (anyone got a few spare metal Aphids out there?).

pvernon Supporting Member of TMP20 Jun 2012 10:01 a.m. PST

John, If paper works for you, in I think 1/600? at

at the freebie botton.

Skrapwelder Supporting Member of TMP20 Jun 2012 10:05 a.m. PST


Drop me an e-mail at



Personal logo Bobgnar Supporting Member of TMP20 Jun 2012 10:05 a.m. PST

For the past few years there has been giant 25-28 scale Space 1889 games with a table full of flyers. I do not know any names, but check previous programs.

The man who makes the flyers sells them for a reasonable price. I bought some for my son who has been doing S-1889 games since he was in High School, 1989.

captainquirk Inactive Member20 Jun 2012 11:09 a.m. PST

John, I'd be very interested in 1/300 fliers, either official S1889 or something similar.

Like you I was never able to get hold of the Game Tech ones – Scott Flower and Frank Chadwick seem to be very difficult people to get a response from!

SBminisguy20 Jun 2012 11:32 a.m. PST

@Tony (dampfpanzerwagon) -- "As you well know the 1/300th masters were made some time ago, but without the agreement of Frank the whole project fell at the first hurdle."

Why did Franck turn it down?? It seems that any deal that's fair, and breathes life into his IP again, wouldn't be a problem. SGoM and Ironclads & Etherflyers are still good games, too bad in a fit of closet cleaning madness years ago I sold my copy of SGoM….

Personal logo John Treadaway Supporting Member of TMP20 Jun 2012 11:54 a.m. PST

@dampfpanzerwagon – Tony is of course right. We spoke at the show in Birmingham two years ago now. Tony's work is first rate and we discussed the idea as I sid I had a previous contact with Frank C. Trouble is…

@SBminisguy – My group had done those quick play rules I mentioned earlier and – as I'd said to Tony – I had contacted Frank Chadwick in the 2006 period (after we did the game at Salute) with a view to producing rules and stuff,licenced and him getting a slice (and he replied positively). I chatted Andrew Hubback (then of Pireme Publishing now Wargames Fever) with a view to producing a printed set of the rules. All was going well but I could get no more responses from Frank.

Maybe he had (and now has) other irons in the fire but I woudn't have thought that anything we were offereing to do would have cut the legs away from anyone else.

Having played a lot of our cut down/fast play rules games recently (with the plastic ships) I was just trying to get the ball rolling again grin

@DerKrampus – I'm a fan of plastics but I always thought they needed a lot of work and – I'd do it – if the end result was worth while and i could mould it and not have to repeat my work over and over again. But I would like something bigger (in an ideal world)

@pvernon – thanks but I'd probably rather do card, plan view counters if it comes to paper.

@ skrapwelder (and others who have offered help) – will do on the emails front.

I'll be putting some new 1889 ships I've designed quick play sheets for on the website I mentioned earlier (A Reliant, Macefield, Dauntless and Skyfire to name but four).

John T

boy wundyr x Supporting Member of TMP20 Jun 2012 12:19 p.m. PST

Here's Highlanders 1/1000 or 1/1200 demo:

I think he's still deciding which scale to go with, I would prefer 1/1200 to mesh with Aeronef.

Rodrick Campbell Sponsoring Member of TMP Fezian20 Jun 2012 1:23 p.m. PST

The problem with 1:1200 is that it doesn't match the older plastic models. They're closer to 1:1000. I don't have any of the old metals to compare so I don't know how they match up. Does anyone have comparison pics of the older models?

It also becomes the old micro armor thing. 1:285 vs. 1:300. There isn't enough difference in size at those scales to worry about.

I still have some issues to work out with the 15mm ships. The 3D printing method will only allow for ships within certain size parameters. CNC milling is the next line of investigation, with good old hand building the models the last option.

boy wundyr x Supporting Member of TMP20 Jun 2012 2:24 p.m. PST

Rodrick – I'd still buy them either way, 1:1000 or 1:1200! The purist in me prefers the latter, that's all.

Viper911 Supporting Member of TMP20 Jun 2012 3:22 p.m. PST

Hi John check out the Northern Ohio Wargaming Society or NOWS on yahoo groups my friend builds Space 1889 ships we play them at Conventions and club meetings can get you in touch if you like he build you any ship you want.


Personal logo John Treadaway Supporting Member of TMP20 Jun 2012 3:51 p.m. PST

@ Viper911

Thanks Rock – that's a kind offer. But – as was said earlier – Tony "dampfpanzerwagon" has done a good job of this sort of thing (and has done ships and so forth for resin casting in the past) but – for it to be 'what I want', I'd like everyone to be able to buy the licenced versions in 1/300th.

I think the market is there.

If I can't achieve that, I'll probably either print out some deck plans in a smaller scale or buy some old metal ones in whatever ascale they were originally (if I can find some) as in 1/1000th

john T

Personal logo miniMo Supporting Member of TMP20 Jun 2012 4:24 p.m. PST

I'd scratchbuilt a bunch of Ironclads & Etherflyers out of balsa and styrene back in the day to run the Spanish-American War campaign. The campaign system was great!

Doing a quick search, found the figures, but the rules would take a lot more archaeology to unearth. I'm pretty sure I did them in 1/1200 which worked great for doing fleet actions on the dining room table, but I'd need the book to confirm scale measurements. Measuring one of my Eagle class flyers, it's 7/8" long. Whichever class Zeppelin is used in this campaign is 1.25" long

boy wundyr x Supporting Member of TMP20 Jun 2012 4:43 p.m. PST

The IC&EF rules are available as a PDF from the Wargame Vault, if that's faster than archaeology, miniMo.

Frank Chadwick Inactive Member20 Jun 2012 11:43 p.m. PST


Contact me with your proposal. I did just search my email archive and found an unanswered email from you from June of 2010. Sorry I missed it but sometimes email gets lost in the summer when I am off at conventions and return to find a couple hundred new emails waiting. Not every one of them gets the attention I'm sure everyone would like. As I recall you asked on my blog as well a few months ago but when I responded to your comment inviting you to contact me off-line I never heard back from you.

streetline Inactive Member21 Jun 2012 1:49 a.m. PST

And they all lived happily ever after, in world filled with little flying boats in many scales…. :-)

[fingers crossed, anyway]

dampfpanzerwagon Fezian21 Jun 2012 2:08 a.m. PST

I will be following these developments with some considerable interest.


Personal logo John Treadaway Supporting Member of TMP21 Jun 2012 5:06 a.m. PST


Fantastic news!

I will contact you as soon as I get home nd near my proper email.


John T

It is good to be King Supporting Member of TMP21 Jun 2012 5:29 a.m. PST

Try Rick Stakes

I believe he is the builder of the ships that were seen at Historicon which are referenced above….be buildt four 25mm-28mm ships for me and they are great.

I have not had contact with him for several years so I hope the email address above is still valid….

boy wundyr x Supporting Member of TMP21 Jun 2012 6:26 a.m. PST

While I'd want 1/1000-1200 to mesh with Aeronef, on another hand, 1/300 would work nicely with some of the Micro World Games dino rider line, which I've never really found a setting for…

Edit: And +1 to Streetline!

Personal logo miniMo Supporting Member of TMP21 Jun 2012 10:24 a.m. PST

Dinos!!! Wait, we need another scale of airships -- 10mm to go with Magister Militums . Venus, here we come ^,^

Personal logo John Treadaway Supporting Member of TMP22 Jun 2012 3:45 a.m. PST

Frank Chadwick, Tony "dampfpanzerwagon" and I have had email chats and it all looks quite hopeful.

So: everyone hang on and we'll see what can be achieved grin

John T

Personal logo J Womack 94 Supporting Member of TMP Inactive Member23 Jun 2012 9:45 p.m. PST


calloo callay!

Lion in the Stars24 Jun 2012 2:49 a.m. PST

Oh, frabjous day!

evilmike Inactive Member18 Jul 2012 4:57 p.m. PST

About damn time, is all I have to say.

Now shut up and take my money!!!

Personal logo John Treadaway Supporting Member of TMP05 Sep 2012 9:38 a.m. PST

OK people

without getting hopes up right the way to the top, I can say that work is progressing on this front. Tony has started to make 1/300th masters of popular ships some Brits and some martians and from the initial castings I have seen photos off very nice they look too.

Frank Chadwick has agreed in principal that this can all go ahead although we have yet to work out business details (costs, moulding costs, price points and all of that other piffle have to be worked out first) and so won't be discussing them here, obviously. But all of that will have to be sorted to everyones satisfaction before they can go into production.

But it is all looking hopful, which is good! Soon with luck the red sands of Mars will be overflown by 3 inch* Aphids and 4 inch* Hullcutters.

I've been adding pages, weapons and ships to the stripped down Cloudship rules we used in 28mm for Salute and other shows a few years back and can confirm that they still make for a fast, fun game, even with some tweaks (we re-added back in some weapons we had excised originally [flying Martians, Mines, and torpedoes and so forth] and so are still beta testing that lot) but that joy is all available – for the moment at least – on this page for those who want to look.


The rules are only 8 pages long and are hopefully rather clearer than they were (as they were originally designed for being run by show umpires who know them ie us).

Assuming this all goes according to plan and the ships come to fruition, obviously you can play with them using whatever rules you like!

This, after all, will be proper Space 1889.

John T

* or there abouts…

kmfrye05 Sep 2012 9:49 a.m. PST


Great News! The 28mm ships are fine for conventions and all only I'd like to fit a larger fleet game on a tabletop and not have my ship boarded on turn 2. : )

Looking forward to this line's release.

Keith F.

TheBeast Supporting Member of TMP05 Sep 2012 10:05 a.m. PST

Our GASLIGHT game group plays 28mm fliers, but as they 'ground interface', move slowly enough to give more than two turns til boarding.


Looking forward to these, for sure!

Thanks, John (and Tony and Frank)!


DLIinVSF05 Sep 2012 10:54 a.m. PST

The Beast ,great terrain in that first pick of your post in the link.

TheBeast Supporting Member of TMP05 Sep 2012 11:51 a.m. PST

VSF_Gamer and Commander Carnage deserve all the credit; I just happen to be the one to scrounge up the mountain peak.

CC's bash of a trireme looks better in person, mind you, and I'm quite fond of the piccies. Really fun, it is!

I've been thinking 15/18mm would be more apropos for battles with sky boarding parties, but even smaller would still allow detailed looking ships in quite usable battle numbers.

This could be GREAT!


Guthroth30 Dec 2012 10:59 a.m. PST

Is there any news on this project yet ?


TheBeast Supporting Member of TMP01 Jan 2013 9:43 a.m. PST

Yes, the New Year is here, and happy and prosperous for all I hope, and we want our expectations raised to be dashed!

Thanks, Pete, for bringing this to the top again.

Oh, and as for John's first comment, they are nasty, but can paint up surprisingly well.

And, I'm not saying that JUST because I have a couple of sealed boxes somewhere to sell…

And, before anybody asks, 'somewhere' means I haven't found them yet…


evilmike Inactive Member03 Jan 2013 5:02 a.m. PST

Damn you sir!! Those insidious Prussians aren't going to shoot themselves!!! Her Majesty demands you flog the people responsible twice as hard and on Sunday's, harrumph harrumph.

TLDR; My money, take it you inhuman monsters.

abdul666lw Inactive Member06 Jan 2013 10:07 a.m. PST
DLIinVSF06 Jan 2013 11:04 a.m. PST

It would be good to see these Warlord ships in production,but alas I doubt it will happen :(

Lion in the Stars06 Jan 2013 1:24 p.m. PST

@Abdul: beautiful ship!

Call me biased, but I prefer the Ranger:

DLIinVSF07 Jan 2013 7:29 a.m. PST

The Star Wars models which form the core aren't easy to get today and go for very silly prices.I've two,one part made and the other still in its box.


Custom made seems the only way at the moment for anything bigger than say the Ironclad patrol boat link

Personal logo J Womack 94 Supporting Member of TMP Inactive Member25 Jan 2013 10:35 p.m. PST

Make this happen please! In 15mm would be awesome!

Take my money!

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