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"FPW railroads, embankments and telegraph poles" Topic

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679 hits since 31 May 2017
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Sparta Inactive Member31 May 2017 2:29 a.m. PST

I have just begun playing the Franco prussian war after 25 years in Napoleonics. My 6 mm terrain needs som slight adjustments to make it period specific, so I have decided to make some railroads (have ordered from LEVEN) and get som telegraph poles.

Railorads features in many battles amongst other at Wissembourg our first playtest for our rules. But I have seen many period pictures of troops taking cover behind railroad embankmentts of several meters height. Do anybody know how common it wa to have embankments for railroads and in which battles they featured?

Secondly telegraph poles – did they run along the railways or alon the roads or both – does anybody know??

Personal logo ColCampbell Supporting Member of TMP31 May 2017 9:06 a.m. PST

As I'm sure you are aware, railroads try to keep the overall grade of the roadbed as flat as possible with only gradual rises and falls. When a railroad line crosses a portion of undulating terrain, then you will find fills (i.e., embankments) and cuts to keep the roadbed fairly flat. So anytime a railroad crosses a battlefield area you will have cuts and fills in the roadbed, which can be very slight or very pronounced, depending on the surrounding terrain.

Unlike in the US where miles and miles of railroad track have been abandoned and removed, European railroads are still fairly "stationary." So I'd recommend using Google Earth to survey the various battlefield areas to identify where the railroad tracks are located and where the cuts and fills are liable to be.

Good gaming,


Rallynow Supporting Member of TMP31 May 2017 11:16 a.m. PST

In 15mm, I used Flames of War railroad embankments.


Perris070731 May 2017 8:32 p.m. PST

Great pics Rallynow! Thanks for sharing!

mrinku Inactive Member31 May 2017 11:48 p.m. PST

Found this:

Alponse de Neuville (1874)

Sparta Inactive Member01 Jun 2017 3:34 a.m. PST

Thx for the responses:

ColCampbell – that makes sense, I will try to see what I can find on google earth, I have found descriptions now from battles of Sedan, Orleans and Amiens, but cannot see if it was the case at Wissembourg where a railway line was across the line of advance.

Rallynow and Mrinku – great pics thx for sharing.

bobspruster02 Jun 2017 11:44 a.m. PST

I understand that at that time, the French routinely built-up their RR beds.
Bruce Weigle's "1870" rules provide scenarios for just about every action fought and are well researched treasure troves.

Sparta Inactive Member03 Jun 2017 4:39 a.m. PST

Dear Bob. Thx for that. It is interesting info about the french which explains a lot. I have the 1870 book, but is not that specific on the RRīs

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