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"2mm 1:1 Napoleonics" Topic

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1,322 hits since 15 Apr 2017
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forwardmarchstudios15 Apr 2017 6:36 p.m. PST

Submitted for your approval…
1:1 true ground scale 2mm Napoleonics. Two companies, 120 figures total, next to 3mm O8.


Here they are painted up (not that well…)


The other company blew away in the wind when I primed them : (

Personal logo jeffreyw3 Supporting Member of TMP15 Apr 2017 7:48 p.m. PST

Great stuff!

MacrossMartin Inactive Member15 Apr 2017 8:54 p.m. PST

That's… slightly mad. O_o

Allen57 Supporting Member of TMP15 Apr 2017 9:06 p.m. PST

How did you do them?

forwardmarchstudios15 Apr 2017 9:15 p.m. PST

A 3D printer.

I'm working on a project for slightly mad people. It's too early to tell if it will be viable though. I've got a lot of pots going at once on this one.

But, from a technological viewpoint, I must say that I am super-impressed with how well these came out. The above are correctly sized 2mm figures at exact groud-scale, and you can see every bayonet. They aren't useable as game pieces though- they are too fragile, if I'm going to be honest, too small.

This was basically a technical challenge I wanted to mess around with. I wanted to see if I could create some 2mm figures at the correct ground scale. It is possible, but very difficult. It required a lot of trial and error. I have a few more iterations on the way to me in the mail, and even more at other printers. Some are up-sized a bit.

So, if anyone ever asks you how many 2mm figures should fit into a 20mm frontage at correct ground scale, you can tell them authoritatively, 60 in 3 ranks.

Allan F Mountford15 Apr 2017 10:10 p.m. PST

Not to be picky ;-) but 20 files @ 22" per file is 440". Assuming your 2mm figure height is approximately man height @ 5'9" (69") that makes 1mm = 34.5" so a 20mm base width = 20 x 34.5" = 690" so your figures are – I can't believe I'm typing this – too small.
Or is it so early in the morning I have the numbers wrong?

forwardmarchstudios15 Apr 2017 10:37 p.m. PST

My fault. Thanks of catching that! I was trying to do the math and losing my mind for a second… then I remembered. There are 25 figures in each rank in the above pictures, not 20. 75 figures total. My bad. These bases are actual full-size companies, not campaign size!
Ok, so, the math is as follows:
2mm= 5.5 feet
20mm / 2mm = 55ft
55ft x 12" = 660 inches
660'/ 24' = 27.5 ranks
So, 2.5 men are missing from true ground scale… I have done all I could.

Allan F Mountford16 Apr 2017 12:01 a.m. PST

Please don't take my post the wrong way – what you have done is outstanding!
I see from reviewing the pic that you do indeed have 25 files. Brilliant job!

forwardmarchstudios16 Apr 2017 1:17 a.m. PST

No offense taken, and thanks! I'm glad you pointed it out.
I'm trying to find the sweet spot of size, resolution and price. The figures above are, unfortunately, basically a stunt. They're too fragile to play with and too expensive to use for an entire army (unless you want to play a brigade per side in 2mm with 1:1 figures…). My next few iterations should be a bit more useful, at least I hope.

14Bore16 Apr 2017 3:49 a.m. PST

Call them Austrians and save the paint.
Actually these 1=1 projects put things into proper perspective

TheGiantTribble16 Apr 2017 4:38 a.m. PST

Oh that is fantastically bonkers…love it

Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP16 Apr 2017 4:48 a.m. PST

Love it

I think this is a great way of showing how units would really have looked 1;1 and in 3D.
I had a bash at trying to capture that in 2D, only using Office Word, by just copying and pasting over and over, using an obscure symbol, until the symbol count matched up with d'Erlon's Corps…..column of battalions I think was the term and I do know how controversial that still is.


Martin Rapier16 Apr 2017 5:35 a.m. PST

Iirc the Irregular 36 man 2mm blocks are on a 10mm frontage, so you can get your 75 man company on 20mm fronts that way.

Personal logo Extra Crispy Sponsoring Member of TMP16 Apr 2017 7:31 a.m. PST

Yup. I'm sure Irregular, when they did their 2mm range, made them as solid blocks for just the reasons you are discovering!

Personal logo Flashman14 Supporting Member of TMP16 Apr 2017 7:55 a.m. PST

Apart from the wrong shako plates, the ill-defined turnback badges and the incorrect number of, and oddly spaced I might add, reinforcement bands on the muskets, these look great.

I noticed a few muskets are missing flints too, but I can live with that I guess.

forwardmarchstudios16 Apr 2017 3:37 p.m. PST

This will all fixed in my next iteration.

But seriously, the bayonets may go, to be replaced by a simple barrel. 3d printers do not like micron-scale pointed objects. The figures are going to get larger as well. These are too small to play with, and too fragile. I have several other versions en route, so we'll see how they look when they get here.

marshalGreg17 Apr 2017 6:10 a.m. PST

@ Forward…

What is the material you are using for the 3 D printer?
Is the printer size limiting the idea of doing the 3mm larger troops version?
I would plan on the 23"- it seems to be more commonly used for by many of the leaders in the wargaming.

Very impressed with your energy and passion for the period- it is good to see such and have young blood to the hobby!

FYI -There are some work going on with 3D metal printing using some sort of arc discharge or nano weld technology. Mich Tech is one of the Universities putting much resource on.
The resolution of detail maybe a limiter.


forwardmarchstudios17 Apr 2017 10:42 a.m. PST

Hi MG-
Thanks! This is one of my few distractions from grad school, so whenever I get sick of the books I spend some time tinkering with these files. Also, 3d printing is somewhat addictive- it's weirdly satisfying to create something in 3d, then have it show up in the mail a few days later.

By 23" do you mean 2"-3" bases? I was thinking these would be useful for large, single, brigade bases. Especially since they're plastic.

I'm working on a few other iterations, one is closer to 2.5mm in size. Resolution is an issue as you get smaller. The figures above are only .70mm thick front to back, with .1mm rifles. These are about as finely detailed as you can get with printers today- I only really tried to print them because I didn't know what I was doing. The piece was also so expensive that you might as well buy a 15mm army for the price of an army with the figures above. However, I have some more robust, useable pieces coming in the mail, which will also be cheaper because they use less refined printers- but still not the cheapest printers. And that's sort of the catch with 3d printing and 2mm at the moment- when you get too small you need to use more advanced printers, which cost more. That's why I'm doing iterations with larger figures, and on bigger frontages. But, when you go bigger you have bigger volume, and use more material, which also puts up the cost.

For instance, here is a more robust version of the project at a larger size but at a lower resolution:


Not much better than irregular, but CHEAP. I could print off the entire battle of Leipzig at 1:1 a this resolution for under $1,000. USD But would i want to do that? Probably not. I do have some higher resolution versions of the same file that are really sharp:


But they aren't as cheap- they'd be fine for a "smaller" project, but my1809 in 3mm project with O8 figs already fits that bill. That project will put me in the 30k figure range for the battle. With these 2mm figures I'm hoping to put something on in the 100k-200k figure range. At least, that's my goal, so the price per piece has to be low enough where I can get there.

What I'd really like to do is print them in multiple colors so I can skip painting, but that technology is a few years away still…

forwardmarchstudios18 Apr 2017 1:41 a.m. PST

Here is another iteration that came in the mail today:
2 battalions in column of divisions. 1:1 figures and ground scale. 900 figures. Vague paint jobs…


Same unit in line…


And half-scale battalions, a full brigade:


For some reason its not letting me embed pictures in the threat anymore. Weird.
I don't think these guys are going to replace my 3mm any time soon….
But still, it's an interesting experiment.
I need to figure out how to paint these. These might work best by spraying them the primary color, then inking, then tipping with metal. I dunno… Red, green, blue, white- for whatever army? The main color and the bayonets is about the best I can hope to get on here.

Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP18 Apr 2017 10:55 a.m. PST

You cannot embed these as they are PNG format. We just get the link. The pics are great, if you follow the link, but much better to show them here if possible.

Convert to JPEG.

Dead easy. "Open as" pictures as Microsoft Paint. Then "save as" but change format on lower of the two bars to JPEG…instant.

My diagram above started as "Word"….that is not a picture. Ah, embed it in a Powerpoint Presentation (it is now a picture and can be shown here!).

not bad for a 63 year old, who has no idea what a tweet actually looks like…….

forwardmarchstudios18 Apr 2017 11:03 a.m. PST

Deadhead- thanks! So that's what was wrong…

Ok… Round Two, Blue Team, Go!

900 figures in a column:


900 figures in line:


900 figures as a half-scale brigade:


forwardmarchstudios19 Apr 2017 9:09 a.m. PST

Ok, I've just ordered up 27,000 of these 2mm figures, including some 40mm strips with standards added. The figures above are actually pretty tough, they can definitely be played with.
I've got the cavalry 90% of the way there. Cavalry is sort of expensive, so I've got to do a few tweaks to the model.

Mega-armies unlocked!

Rittmester19 Apr 2017 12:02 p.m. PST

Very interesting concept.
If I have it correct, then if a figure represents an average 1800 mm man, then the scale is 1:900.
The width of the Allied position at Waterloo was ca 2,5 miles. To play that part of the battle in 1:1 scale (excluding Plancenoit) you would need a table ca. 4,4 x 2 m. Or… downscaling to 1:2 you may play on a large dining table.
When will they be for sale did you say? :)

Rittmester19 Apr 2017 12:04 p.m. PST

The skirmish formations will be interesting to see :)

forwardmarchstudios19 Apr 2017 12:55 p.m. PST

Hi Rittmester-
The scale is 1/900, correct. Having a nice, set ground scale definitely makes it easier to set up historical battlefields. I've always wanted to do battles at 1:1, even if I had to made concession to do so. This is definitely a way to do it. I'm really looking forward to some gigantic battles with these things: Wagram, Borodino, Waterloo, Leipzig. I managed to get the price down to where i could do Leipzig at 1:1. Half a million figures. For under $1,000. USD Y

Even at 1:900 Waterloo would still be a pretty big battlefield. Each battalion, at full 1/900 scale, is still about 5 inches in frontage. That is, essentially, the smallest you can make a 1:1 unit; it's actually not all that small as far as foot print goes. At half scale it might be easier- there ~100m = 60mm.

The figures will be available to the public at some point, sooner than later. I want to make sure that they all print correctly first, so I have to wait a few days between designs iterations to see if they come out ok…

This range isn't necessarily going to be for sale though. I'm debating making the CAD files for them open-source and setting up a Patreon account if people want to show me some appreciation. That way people all over the world can use them, as long as they have a 3d print service convenient to them. And they won't have to deal with potentially onerous shipping and handling. Before I do that though I still want to make sure I have a good product to put out there.

I also want to use 3d printing to create some of those kriegspiel-type blocks that would go along with these; the type you can roll from one side to the other to show step loss. It might be useful for players.

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