Monday, September 27, 2010

Aspern - Essling 2011

After the anti-climactic letdown of the tied AFL Grand Final (extra-time anyone?), Rosbif and the junior Rosbifs went down to West Gippsland to Tim's place for the Aspern-Essling working bee. By the time we got there, work was already well underway with lots of hammering and screwing (of screws - oo-er!). I volunteered to do the transferring of the maps from John H. Gill's Thunder on the Danube of the 2 key villages of Aspern and Essling on to thinner boards of MDF. These boards will be placed on the tables, but not fixed, so that after the game the table tops can be altered for the next big battle recreation.

As it is such a featureless flood plain, the table tops are ideal for recycling. Tim has purpose built terrained boards for both Waterloo and Ligny/Quatre Bras, which can't be used for anything else, so his plan for future battles is to just build the terrain and use the Aspern tables as the base; hence the removable villages.

The best thing about these trips, besides the banter, is the full-on spread provided for hungry workers (and offspring) by Tim and his wife Jill. Jill's cooking is always a treat, and usually the highlight of the day. Unfortunately, if there is work to be done after lunch, it's very hard to get motivated again after such a scrumptious repast. So it's always a good idea to get as much done before lunch is served!

The area where Tim lives was pretty hard hit by the bushfires a couple of years ago, and in fact with a lot of planning, good luck and bravely staying to fight the fires, Tim and his family managed to save their property, losing only fencing but no buildings. Today, besides the trees putting on their fuzzy, post fire regrowth, you'd hardly know that this area was devasted in one of the worst fire disasters since European settlement. This winter and spring have been so damp and the regrowth so phenominal, that you'd hardly know that we've been suffering drought for ages.

Anyway, hats off to Tim and Jill and family for saving their house and for being such wonderful hosts!

The assembled tables. Tables on the edges on casters, enabling access to the centre tables, where all the action will be.


Junior Rosbif #2 making herself useful during the gridding of the tables

You lookin' at me?!
Rosbif trying to scare the horses, but only succeeding in looking thick!

The boys hard at work plotting the Danube (note the level of supervision required!)

Essling roughly cut out and placed in position

Aspern with some of the buildings in position

Plotting the Gemeinde Au

Plotting the eastern arm of the Danube.


  1. Hi
    Congratulations to your friends for their fight against the fire consequences. And Aspern-Essling is a really, really big project!
    Waiting to see more pictures

  2. Hi
    Aspern and Essling are painted and about to be flocked. They were very accurately transposed onto the MDF sheets. Thanks Monsieur Rosbif.


  3. Excellent news, Tim! I'd love to see them. I must say that I was concerned that accurately transposing the maps might not fit with the available buildings. I thought maybe we'd need to err on the side of practicality rather than historical accuracy and make the footprint match your buildings.


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