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Sunday, 1 September 2019

Wild Geese Wargames & Future Plans

I thought I had better just let you know that I am still here😀

Wild Geese Wargames Weekend (22-23rd June)

When I last wrote I was frantically casting and painting the new dragoons for a gaming weekend over the weekend 22-23 June - I managed to get just the two units finished.

The weekend went pretty well, and the 40mm semi flats were generally well received. Unfortunately I somehow managed to pretty much forget to take photos, and those which I did were out of focus! Below are a few I have lifted from other blogs.




We played 3 games over the weekend using the 'Gentleman's War' rules which worked well with these figures. For those of you with the rules - we used 2 packs of cards, one for each half of the table - this speeded up play nicely.

Clearly we were playing a game - not putting on a display, so there is all sorts of mess on the table, however the plain cloth did show the figures off nicely.






Since then I have not touched the 40mm figures, and have mainly been playing Commands and Colors Napoleonic using 15mm figures.



This is not the place to discuss these small chaps - if you are interested here is a link to a write up of our last game.
http://scrivsland.blogspot.com/2019/08/battle-of-vimeiro-1808-using-command.html


Future Releases

I am told that PA are planning to release some new moulds in the (near) future. I have asked that the next releases are some Austrian grenz (Russian pandours) and a general officer.

For the light troops I pointed Chris to the posts back in September 2014 (no rushed job this) - I will keep you informed.

Sunday, 16 June 2019

Austrian Sachsen-Gotha Dragoons

Another unit of the new dragoons completed - this time with a little modification.

With arm from cuirassier mould

As mentioned my previous post I am not all that keen on the pose with the sword low down alongside the horse (see below). For this unit I have the sword on the shoulder, using the arm from the cuirassiers. The arm is a little on the large size, but not really noticeable, it also requires a bit of work modifying  the cuff, as the cuirassier has heavy gloves and the dragoon are bare handed.

With arm from dragoon mould
I think I prefer the sword on the shoulder - any thoughts?

Saturday, 8 June 2019

Austrian Erzherzog Joseph Dragoons

I have just completed my first 8 man unit of dragoons. These are new figures, so as a change from my usual practice of photographing the assembled unit I thought it worthwhile showing the individual figures.

I have painted them up based on Erzherzog Joseph Dragoons, but with some simplification (for example my hand is not steady enough for multiple lines on the saddle cloth). The figures are mostly as in the mould, but with one main change - I have replaced the heads with  older infantry officers heads, with mustache just painted on where appropriate. I did this primarily because I think the older, hand sculpted heads have better definition on the facial features - and also to maintain continuity with the cavalry I have already converted from the Karoliner range.

Trooper


Apart from the Russian officer's head the only other minor change I have made is to fix the carbine a bit lower than the lug/hole suggested.


I think he is a very fine chap, and the mould will get a lot of use (I have cast 30 so far).


Officer


This time with an Austrian officer's head - another nice figure, who is also going to act as 'Brigadiers' in my army proudly taking command of 3 or 4 units.




(I appreciate the officers saddle cloth should be a different colour - however I had already painted it before I remembered and did not feel inclined to change it.)


Drummer


Dragoons had drummers rather than trumpeters, apart from the head (and sword hilt) this is the standard figure.


I'm sure it would look better if I could paint an eagle on the drum - but these are wargames toys not display figures! Also there should be a sword hilt showing which was forgotten by sculptor, I could have easily corrected it using the hilt of of a sword from elsewhere - but I missed it until too late!


Standard Bearer


And finally the standard bearer. There is no actual figure for the standard bearer (we did not think it warranted an additional mould) - instead an extra arm has been provided to convert either the officer or trooper - I chose the trooper as he has a carbine cross belt which looks very similar to the one to carry a standard (there is also a cartridge box on the back).


The trooper and officer both have drawn swords, whereas for the standard bearer it should still be in the scabbard - I just glued on the hilt of a French sword.


Finished Unit


I have now based them up, so here is the completed unit.


Size Comparison


As discussed previously, the cuirassiers are too big, and do not fit in well with the rest of the SYW figures. To bring the dragoons into scale with the rest of the SYW range they have been plotted 7% smaller than the cuirassiers - I have taken some shots as size comparison.

First of all a comparison with the Austrian infantry. Both the infantryman and dragoon measure about 42mm from heel to top of hat - so that looks fine.


Next a comparison with my converted Karoliners. The Karoliner appears marginally larger, although again the men's heights are about the same - I suspect the difference is the larger head on the Karoliners horse. I think they will look fine together, particularly with the same heads on both figures.



And finally the cuirassiers - I checked it, that really is only 7%!


And as requested by Ross - a couple of shots against the old HE with musketoon.


The new figure is a bit larger and bulkier than the old HE, which is in line with the whole of the  SYW range. Note that I have used the Russian officer's head as I like the look of an almost full round head on the semi-flats (just personal taste), however the heads in the moulds are not quite as wide.

Overall Conclusions


The dragoons are really nice figures, I would have preferred something with a bit more energy, but will still be using them for the bulk of my Austrian and Prussian dragoons.

I have a unit part finished which have the sword arm replaced by the one on the shoulder taken from the cuirassiers - it will be interesting to see if the larger arm really shows up?

As always comments would be appreciated.

Sunday, 2 June 2019

Prussian Hussars No.8

I have also had a play, and made a unit based on Prussian Hussar regiment No 8 using the Rossbach moulds.


In the past I have not used these moulds due to the lack of a trumpeter and carbine, however I decided  to buy a pair (in the recent half price sale) to give them a go and add the missing parts from SYW cuirassiers. I cut a bit off of the end of the cuirassiers carbine - but I think it is still a bit too long.


I also made a trumpeter - this was a bit more radical -  I cut/filed off the whole of the arm from the hussar with the raised sword, then glued on a cuirassier trumpet arm (after filing off the swallows nests). The arm is actually on the large size, but close enough.

I suspect there will be a deaf horse if he blows the trumpet, however I tried raising it but it ended poking him in the eye - which looked worse.




Saturday, 1 June 2019

Frei Corps Loudon

In order to provide the Austrians with some light troops I have painted up a unit of Frei Corps Grun Loudon. (I know they probably did not fight in open order - but until the Grenz moulds are available I wanted something).


For the figures I used the following:

  • Officer - Prussian with Russian officers head (I do like that head)
  • Standard bearer - Prussian with Russian musketeer head (I did not want a pom-pom)
  • Drummer - Prussian (with no arm chevrons (I filed them off of the model I have))
  • NCO - Prussian with Russian head and musket.
  • Rank and file - Prussian musketeer, as I wanted troops with a sword - plus a Russian musketeers head.

The figures above are in my standard 16 man unit, and are shown in close order. However for skirmishing they are all individually based, and I decided that in that role they should lose the  standard and drummer, so I have replaced them with another NCO, and an officer with musket, using a Russian officer (with the gorget and lapel buttons removed).























Wednesday, 29 May 2019

Dragoons released

(Updated 01/06/19)

In case you are not on PA's mailing list - they have just announced that the dragoon moulds are (finally) been released - see their newsletter:                 


Prince August Logo

Seven Years War Dragoons.


Hi Steve,
The June Bank Holiday weekend is upon us, combined with Fathers Day on the 16th and the new release of our super Dragoons Mould set inspired us to offer some discounts that will determine how your hobby develops this summer.

First and foremost, we have a brand new set of FOUR moulds that offers you the biggest opportunity yet to customise your castings for the armies in the Seven Years War. Dragoons were fielded by most countries and our mould have interchangeable heads to reflect that versatility. Painting /Assembly guides are still in development.
There is an early discount of 10% off this new set that expires at noon on Tuesday.

The other discounts are part of the June Weekend Sale and include the following:
·     SYW Artillery crew moulds PA3118 and PA3119.
·     SYW Russian Bundle further discounted.
·     PA1240 Napoleonic Starter Kit (54mm).
·     PSK-L Advanced Paint Pack.
·     Solder Melting Pot.
·     AC-PA2073 Tool Set (Brass Brush, Files and Super Snipper).

Sale expires at noon on Tuesday June 4th 2019 GMT+1. No coupons are required. Sale prices are on product pages (strikethrough of older prices can be seen). No minimum order requirements.




I received a set of 4 moulds today (so no sneak peak this time), which comprises:
  1. Officer with Austrian head (as shown)
  2. Drummer with Austrian head (as shown)
  3. Trooper with Austrian head (not shown - see below)
  4. A set of 8 different heads to make other nations & horse grenadiers,  plus an arm for a standard bearer.
The horse/torso are one piece castings, with separate arms, heads and carbine.

The picture is confusing (in fact wrong), the rear figure is the previously released cuirassier, the dragoon is on a similar horse, however the sword is pointing rather than on the shoulder.

As the weather has been fine I have done some casting over the last couple of days, and have cast up enough figure for about 5 units (so that is 30 of the trooper). Initially using my 'scrap metal' I struggled casting the heads, swords and carbine (which are near the top of the mould). However after some venting, and playing around with the elastic bands and clamps I ended up with something like a 90% success rate. (They cast much easier with the Model Metal).

The heads Austrian heads in with the tops of the moulds with the horses and riders, and although they cast pretty much every time, the detail was a little smooth. For the Austrians I have decided to use the officer head from the Russians, which I think is one of the nicest in the range, and is the one I have used on the Karoliner conversions, so there will be some continuity between the two sets of cavalry.

I have a couple of units cleaned up and undercoated and will try and get one painted in the next week or so - the dragoon officer is also going to act as 'brigadiers' until some general staff are available.


Sunday, 31 March 2019

Freikorps von Kleist

Prussian Light Troops


I decided to make some light troops for a project I am planning. Hopefully PA will bring out some dedicated moulds in the near future, however in the meantime I had a play with what I currently have available.



The bodies for the troops are the Hungarian infantry, with a few changes:

  • Mirliton heads have been used on the NCO and rank and file. These were kindly donated by Aly Morrison (see post 20 March 2017), hopefully something similar will be made available by PA in the not too distant future? (Kronoskaf states that a tricorns was also worn.)
  • The tricorns for the officers and drummer are from the Prussian guard infantry (rank ans file), I chose this as it has the scalloped edge - I cut the mustache off using a sharp knife.
  • The NCO has a musket from the Russian officer.
I appreciate the lace is all wrong, however they do what I always wanted from this range - look the part even if not 100% correct.

The figures are singly based as I am planning to use thenm with the recently published 'A Gentleman's War' rules.

Next up some Austrian Light troops. I fancy painting up 'Grun Loudon'............what figures to use???










Thursday, 28 February 2019

Prussian Infantry & Dragoon Update

Prussian Infantry


I have finally made a start to painting some more Prussian infantry - this time IR No7 - Braunschweig-Bevern.


These are pretty much the standard Prussian castings, with the exception of the officer who is a Russian with a Prussian head. He needs a little conversion - just remove the belly pouch and shave off the buttons from the front of the coat.

I really do not enjoy painting Prussians - I find working with the dark blue difficult.

The flag is from Maverick Models - 80p well spent!

Dragoons - Update


Work on the dragoons is moving on slowly, the current plan is to revert back to figures with the horse and torso together, as it proved difficult to produce an accurate fit on the torso to horse connection (hands-up that was my idea) . It is still proposed to keep separate arms and heads to allow more variety.

Both the horses and riders will be about 7% smaller than the cuirassiers to rescale the horse to 15 hands compared with the 16 hands for the cuirassiers.

There will be 3 figure moulds, an officer (pictured below), a drummer and a trooper, along with an extra arm to convert either the officer or trooper into a standard bearer, these will have 'Austrian' heads, which are also suitable for French, Russians and quite a few others.



In order to allow these to be used for other nations there will be an additional mould containing cavalry heads including:

  • Prussian tricorn with steep front
  • Austrian horse grenadier bearskin
  • Russian horse grenadier 'mitre'
  • Horse grenadier mitre
  • French dragoon fatigue cap
  • British light dragoon
Below is the work in progress for the heads - these need a bit more work but give an idea of what is proposed.




As always feedback would be appreciated.

Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Prussian Cuirassiers by Steve Marthinsen

A little more eye candy for you - Steve has been busy converting the Austrian cuirassiers to make the Prussian version.


The conversion was quite involved and required shortening the coat tails and adding the sabretache.


If you have any comments or questions on how he did this please post them here and I am sure Steve will pass me the responses.

Sunday, 27 January 2019

More head swapping

I've been playing again................

Following on from the previous post. The charging French dragoons were originally painted as a large 'old school' unit - so there are quite a lot of them. (Enough for 3 of my smaller 8 man units if I paint up two more standard bearers and musicians)

Having done the first unit with a straight swap of heads with tricorn I decided to be a bit more adventurous. and make a unit in forage cap.  I used the 'bonnet de police' from the SYW French infantry - again it fits quite well and looks fine size wise.


I have to admit that this combination of the Karoliner charging cavalry and the new SYW heads is really growing in me, and I might cast up some more?


Interestingly, when I started this project all I asked PA to produce were some more heads!

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

What a difference a head makes?

I had a game using the 'King of the Battlefield' rules last week - well worth a try if you have not used them.

During the game I thought how well the Russian cavalry, which are Karoliners, converted during casting/assembly with the new SYW heads fitted in with the new range. Rather than sidelining the old figures, I decided to try and 'upgrade' some of my painted units - something I was nervous about, as potentially it could ruin them - however I think I got away with it.

I am not suggesting there is anything wrong with the older figures, however all of the new range have larger hats and more facial detail - so the older ones look a little out of place - the photo below shows the difference.


One of the units in action before change.



And the same unit after the head swap.



The process I adopted was much easier than I had expected - the important thing is to keep things as clean as possible (it was done with the figures on the bases), as follows:

  • Cut off the head with a pair of snips (this leaves an uneven surface)
  • Square off the join with a sharp craft knife (avoid a file as it makes a mess)
  • Drill a small diameter pilot hole (I used an electric mini drill)
  • Drill out the full size hole for the head to be fitted - use a pin vice for this to avoid generating heat which would damage the paint
  • Undercoat the heads before fitting
  • Fit the heads (I find the Russian officer ideal)
  • Paint to match existing.
I have done 2 units so far, I think they took about 3 hours each.