Guns again

Moderators: Laffe, Vis Bellica

Posts: 529
Joined: Mon Oct 31, 2016 5:04 pm

Re: Guns again

Post by DCRBrown »


Right, I see where you are coming from.

I agree with what's been said, it would seem a little gamey if a player were to squeeze his artillery onto the slimmest base possible in order to take advantage of the much reduced battery frontage. :roll:

I would suggest that when playing games you use the battery frontage suggested on p16 as a guide and ensure that all batteries fielded have a minimum frontage in relation to that. And if a player's battery frontage is deemed too small then ask him to field two gun models to represent a battery, etc, or produce a battery template to use a guide for how much space a battery must occupy, with your games.


Posts: 116
Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2014 6:20 pm
Location: Cambridge UK

Re: Guns again

Post by nikjen66 »

We use very similar frontages for guns,30-40mm and attach limbers/caissons to give it a bit of depth.
Our batteries actually work out to a similar frontage to the infantry in line for 3/4 guns and wider for Russian batteries. None of that stops us trying to shoot our guns through a keyhole on occasion though! Lol

Posts: 459
Joined: Wed Mar 28, 2018 1:35 pm

Re: Guns again

Post by Contrarius »

I can’t help thinking our attachment to fielding batteries of three or four models is a throwback to the rule systems of the 1970s. Well, that and wanting to model the howitzer element in some way. Surely, most of the evidence suggests real battery frontages were less than half that of an infantry battalion? So, two gun models per average battery should really suffice. Or am I missing something?

Also, batteries were typically known at the time as companies, and had the manpower roughly speaking of an infantry company. A battalion had anywhere between four and ten companies. This alone should give a vague idea of relative frontages.

Posts: 10
Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2019 10:41 am

Re: Guns again

Post by Petek »

Okay, we seem to be back at the original point.

What contemporary evidence is there for comparing the frontage of a battalion against a Battery? If "most of the evidence suggests real battery frontages were less than half that of an infantry battalion", what evidence is that? I would suggest that the evidence presented here and in the TMP thread already quoted, would suggest that real battery frontages were much bigger; 10 paces for light Regimental guns up to 25 yards for British Royal Artillery, plus the width of each gun. Taking into account any terrain problems, there would have to be enough room to take a team of horses and limber through the gap to wheel in front of the gun and back through to hitch up to the trail (because that is apparently how it was done).

An Infantry Company standing shoulder to shoulder two or three deep and an Artillery "Company" serving the guns had very different functions and can't really be compared.

A poster on the same TMP thread mentioned earlier, pointed out that the Kriegspiel game had a 300 file Battalion (900 men?) taking up a 250 pace frontage and a 8 gun battery taking up 200 paces with the guns 24 paces apart. Given that the Kriegsspiel game was developed in the early 1820s by Prussian Army Officers, (making it near contemporary with our period) maybe we can take it that since they saw Battalions and Artillery batteries on a regular basis, they would have a fair idea of actual frontages.

Opinions seem to vary widely and looks like a project for a proper historian. Given the above, I think David is spot-on with his battery frontages on page 16.

Post Reply