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"What ships to buy first?" Topic

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1,504 hits since 13 Aug 2012
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Personal logo D6 Junkie Supporting Member of TMP13 Aug 2012 7:15 p.m. PST

I'm seriously considering picking
up some of the Old Glory 15mm ACW ships.
Still awaiting my first books on the subject.
So which ships should I buy first?
I was thinking the most common?

79thPA Supporting Member of TMP13 Aug 2012 7:26 p.m. PST

Do you want to do river warfare or sea actions?

doc mcb13 Aug 2012 8:02 p.m. PST

If you want somewhat more balanced and lively scenarios, go with river battles. But you'll have to do 'what if" to get something really balanced.

Personal logo D6 Junkie Supporting Member of TMP13 Aug 2012 8:09 p.m. PST

I'm thinking river.

benglish13 Aug 2012 8:36 p.m. PST

Eager for the answer to this, too …

Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian13 Aug 2012 8:52 p.m. PST

When CSS Arkansas had her big fight, the Union river fleet (not counting Farragut's ships) was:

US Army Western Gunboat Flotilla (Davis)

USS Essex ironclad gunboat
USS Benton ironclad gunboat
USS Carondelet ironclad gunboat
USS Louisville ironclad gunboat
USS Cincinnati ironclad gunboat
USS Lancaster ram
USS General Bragg captured cottonclad ram
USS Queen of the West ram
USS Tyler timberclad gunboat
USS Switzerland ram
with 6 mortar rafts and 9 transports as auxiliary vessels


Personal logo gamertom Supporting Member of TMP13 Aug 2012 9:02 p.m. PST

I have two different suggestions for you.

1) Mississippi River Actions – buy ACW04 Mississippi River Ram (not sure if this is one of the Union "Elliot" rams or one of the Confederate converted riverboats – could probably use it for either) and ACW08 Tyler. This gives you two wooden vessels based on different concepts – Tyler emphasizes gunnery combat and the other emphasizes ram combat. So you have two somewhat equal riverboats that use different fighting techniques. If you are willing to spend the money, add ACW21 City Class Ironclad (first and largest class of Union ironclad gunboats on the Mississippi – took [part in just about every big river fight) and ACW06 Six Gun Casemate Ironclad (could use this to represent the CSS Arkansas – the story around this ship is fantastic).

2) Albemarle Sound actions – ACW09 Albemarle vs ACW02 Medium Sidewheeler Gunboat and ACW24 USS Sassacus Class. The CSS Albemarle and its brief history are the next best to the CSS Arkansas saga. Old Glory has all you need to add to you could handle all of CSS Albemarle's combat history.

doc mcb13 Aug 2012 9:17 p.m. PST

Some plausible what ifs:

The Confederates decide they have to concentrate their Mississippi River fleet, instead of having two weak ones. They decide New Orleans is the key. They unify command -- under Buchanan perhaps -- and integrate the army rams and the Louisiana State Navy into it.

Then instead of building the massive ironclads LOUISIANA and MISSISSIPPI, they use the same materials and turn out ARKANSAS class small ironclads -- at least a couple of which are ready when Farragut attacks.

In other words, give the CSN ALL the wooden ships, those at NO and those at Memphis, along with three ARKANSAS ironclads. That makes a reasonably even match versus Farragut.

The Union upriver fleet is then unopposed, except by land defenses like Island #10 and sheer distance and supply problems. But it gives something approachng a fair fight.

The "what if" involves assumptions about command philosophy and organization and strategy, while keeping within the South's available material.

Mako11 Inactive Member13 Aug 2012 10:22 p.m. PST

The Monitor vs. the Merrimack is a classic matchup, so a must buy, in my opinion.

Personal logo Nashville Supporting Member of TMP13 Aug 2012 10:31 p.m. PST

Well, here you go..this collection has a host of OG 15mm ACW ships BUT there are a number of commercial display models which I waterlined with my handy Dremil tool.


AND here are some free rules from a Nashcon a few years back
,,,and I ain't whistl'n Dixie
PDF link

Personal logo D6 Junkie Supporting Member of TMP14 Aug 2012 6:38 a.m. PST

You are awesome!
Thanks for all the suggestions.
And of course, thanks Nashville for the photo inspiration!

drummer Supporting Member of TMP15 Aug 2012 5:14 a.m. PST

Here's a 'what-if' I came up with some time ago that might be of interest:

In 1861, the Missouri Militia at Camp Jackson is sent a substantial amount of reinforcements, and manages to strike first before Lyons can gather his Germans. The "Camp Jackson Affair" is basically reversed.

The result is the substantial ship building resources of St. Louis fall into Confederate hands and they are able to build up a much more substantial river squadron, which in turn results in some larger, more evenly matched river battles.

My guess is that the Union still ends up winning and clearing the Mississippi, but it takes longer and is much harder.

Personal logo The Beast Rampant Supporting Member of TMP15 Aug 2012 2:23 p.m. PST

The Monitor vs. the Merrimack is a classic matchup, so a must buy, in my opinion.

Monitor vs. Virginia. grin

Thanks for some good ideas, guys (and great 'What If', Doc). I will check out those rules, thank you, Nashville.

badwargamer Inactive Member19 Aug 2012 7:08 a.m. PST

If you are going to build up a fleet and want some cheap models and extra variety consider rescaling card models. I am building up a collection of these. They are cheap and the variety is growing. There is a Cairo class that is almost ready for release and will be a free model!
Here are a couple of links to show you what you can do.
Game showing a mix of plastic models (the union sail ships) commercial rescaled card models (virginia and monitor)and my own card designs (CSS Patrick Henry and Jamestown) link
ecardmodels has a lot mainly made by CT Ertz. Some cheap, some free link He has started with a load of the sloped armour casement 'ram' models but has a lot of river type ships under development. He has some of these available as free downloads. To see what he has in the pipeline and for the free downloads you'll have to join the forum at

You can rescale to any size you want. You can do 1/100 but they will be massive. Most of the Old glory ships appear to be short and tall and are not to scale but are 'wargamey'. I do a similar thing with my car models. I make them at 1/150 scale and make the cabins a bit taller so the figures dont look too massive.

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