Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Freytag's Jaegers

As with the whole Perry AWI range the poses and sculpts are very nice.  I especially like the kneeling poses and that the two who are fine have wrapped their rifle slings around their wrists for support.

Another week in February, another small batch of 28mm SYW figures from me.  This time around it is 6 members of Freytag's Jaegers who served in the Hanoverian army.  The Anglo Allies raised Jaeger Corps from 4 different German state - Hanover, Hessen-Kassel, Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel and Schaumburg-Lippe (a variable meet up of Imagination bloggers). 

I had a set of 6 Hessian Jaegers plus officer and hornist plus a few left overs , the result of changing rules unit sizes to fit rule systems!  As leftovers had been previously painted as Freytag's corps, I ordered another pack of Jaegers from Messrs Perry and Perry to serve as a group of Freytag's Jaegers for my SYW Sharp Practice project.  The figures are from the AWI range, sold as Hessian Jaegers but work equally well in the SYW as Hanoverians. 
Uniforms are very basic as fits a Jaeger unit - green jacket and waistcoat with green facings, white breeches and grey gaiters.

Here's the requisite Folky arty print for historical reference. 

Darn I missed the flower pot mounted in the tricorne!
The Backside view shows the nice details in these sculpts.  They are packing a hide knack sack, canvas haversack and metal canteen plus cartridge box.

Front side view with the 6 new lads flanked by the officer and hornist on un-tufted bases.
By my count that is 6 28mm figures for a whopping 30 points not including the two pre-existing Jaegers.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Hanoverian Pontooniers

Another week in February, another small Challenge post from me.  This period is my heaviest work wise but the end of the tunnel is in sight.  Of course it would help if I didn't have 7 projects in various states of completion on the workbench, all of them started since the Challenge began.

The six guys who do all the work and the blowhard who watches them.
I have a group of 6 Hanoverian Pontooniers from the Seven Years Wars for the engineer  Drumpf to order around.  I gave the lace work of the light dragoons and highlanders a rest for a bit and worked on some support troops with less detail required.  
It need to be a YUGE bridge boys, the best ever!

These figures are from the Perry AWI range and packaged as American Drag Rope Men, meaning that they are infantrymen and civilians drafted in to do the man handling of artillery pieces.  I am continuing to mine this excellent range of figures and morph it to fit my Seven Years War needs.  I partiulary like that these chaps have obviously been doing some seriously hard labour and are taking a well deserved rest. 

There appear to have been no rank and file engineer troops like sappers and miners in the Anglo-Allied army I am modelling.  However, Hanover maintained a corps of Pontooniers which makes sense given the large rivers in the Electorate.  I figured that these could be used as a group of Engineers for my Sharp Practice games.  Also the ropes that these lads are carrying would fit with the job of build a pontoon bridge or various other engineering tasks.

I am loving these period Hanoverian illustrations.  Pontoonier flanked by Engineer and artillery trainman.

Uniform wise they wore the lovely blue coat that they shared with Hanoverian artillery along with a blue waistcoat and buff breeches.  This is represented in the centre figure from this period illustration.  The Perry figures come in various states of dress suited to heavy work.  Two are in waistcoats and tricorns and the rest in shirt sleeves, and all have discarded their gaiters.  Furthermore, three of the figures in shirtsleeves are wearing floppy hats which I have painted to represent straw hats.  I figure that I can use the four figures in shirt sleeves as civilian labourers as well.
I got your YUGE bridge right here!
What does this idiot want now? I am late for my yoga class and I really need some downward facing dog.

With the white shirts and buff breeches, painting got rather monochromatic so I used heavier shading on these figures.  I also figured it gave the impression of sweat and dust stained clothes from heavy lifting and shifting.

Drumpf is a pre-existing condition, so that's six foot figures for 30 points.

Monday, February 6, 2017

More Perry Light Dragoons

I am continuing to slog away at my SYW Sharp Practice collection for this year's Challenge. I have 4 more light dragoons finished to go along the 8 I finished earlier in the Challenge. Production has slowed down due to the impact of real life - I wear two hats at work and both are in their busy seasons. However, I find it helps me keep going if I post something each week, even if it's only a few figures. There's 8 more of these guys in various stages on the workbench as I type, I've found it works best to finish them in small batches once I get them to a certain point.

I am taking a sure but slow approach on this project, aiming to enjoy the ride.  I've found that the lace wars may be my sweet spot for miniatures painting.  Basically this is what I do for a hobby, painting horse and musket figures is something I've been doing  for 40 years now!  I know that these figures gave KenR a head ache earlier but I've really appreciated painting them.  The details stands out very nicely and it's easy to pick out the details like the lace.  Plus the poses are dynamic and the helmet just rocks!

So all in all we have 1 trumpeter, 1 officer, 2 troopers on picket duty with pistols. 

Unlike my earlier problems with Piper uniforms for the Highlanders, I am on pretty solid ground with the trumpeter.   I've got several sources showing the green faced white with white/red lace including illustrations.  I like that he's got two trumpets , one in hand and one on his back.  Maybe he's a belt and braces kind of guy.  Or maybe he just needs horns in two different keys ( I understand from horn players that this is a thing, I play the guitar which is tuned in the key of I've got four fingers on my left hand).  Anyway I did the trumpet in his hand in silver and the hunting style horn on his back in brass, which matches real life examples that I've seen in both cases.

The figure I've used for the officer is I think an NCO officially.  He came in the Perry command pack along with the trumpeter and the officer I'd painted earlier.  I am fielding each Sharp Practice "group" to represent a squadron or company so wanted a second office for my second leader.  It was a simple paint conversion and I reckon that he's found it prudent to carry the carbine like his men.

The end plan is to have 2 Sharp Practice groups of 8 troopers, which means that with figures packed in threes I had to get 18!  I decided to use the extra two as pickets and/or dispatch riders and got a pack with pistols for this role, as they look the part.  That leaves one pistol packing mutha as a regular trooper (included in my first dragoon entry). 

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Tragardland Croats

6 Croats plus one Lady (not painted for the Challenge)

It's been an odd week, I cancelled my first class Thursday morning so that my students could get their selfies taken with Justin Trudeau.  He was on campus at the University of Regina this morning and buggered up the hallways with huge traffic jams.

A small post from me this week, as I've been delayed by real life and other distractions.  I have 6 Seven Years War Croats in 28mm.  I have based their uniform on the Banal-Grenzinfanterieregiment nr. 1 but named them in honour of their place of origin, The Duchy of Tragardland an Imagination on the Blogosphere.  I had  intended to have these be my East bonus round entry, but such is life.

Late last year Alan over at the Duchy posted on his blog, enquiring about the Westphalia Maria Theresa figure that he had seen various places. Challenge veterans will recall that this figure was supplied to Challenge participants a few years back.  I had actually painted my copy, but Curt had given me a second.  The original  (with orb and sceptre removed) was panted to act as a well to do civilian lady, and appeared in one of my Sharp Practice games set in the SYW.  Curt was so pleased to see her on table that he gave me a second (I could actually do with thirds if there's one going Curt).   So the replacement was offered up to Alan in exchange for something from his lace wars lead pile.  I didn't know what that would be until it arrived.

Shortly after New Years a strange package appeared with a Tragardland Postal Office return address, much to my wife's amusement.  Inside were these 6 Croats in payment for the Queen and Empress. They arrived painted in a tin soldier style in a mix of uniforms from several Grenzer regiments.  However, time in the lead pile and travel had taken their toll on the paintwork, so I decided to strip them down and repaint them.  Amusing my wife yet again with a request for Detol and a mason jar, I got them back to bare metal and painted them up as shown.  First time in a long time I'd stripped minis and the first time using Detol. It worked quite well with a little scrubbing using my daughter's toothbrush.

I didn't recognize the figures, but according to Alan they are Eagle Figures with the exception of a Front Rank Officer.  Eagle's minis date originally from the 80s but I had not encountered them before.  I found the sculpts rather muddy in detail and a bit of a chore to paint.  In the end I went kind of tin soldierish too and it seemed to suit them.

These don't officially fit in with any project that I am working on (or plan to), but I reckon there's wiggle room to field these in my SYW Kleine Krieg games which are focused on the Western campaigns.  First of all the Austians sent several columns into Western Germany during the SYW, far enough West that the British-Hanoverian-Allied armies had to make counter moves.  So one option is that they were in the advance guard of one of these columns and got detached so linked up with the French.  Another possibility if to have them acting as a unit of light Infantry Volontaires in the French army, some of which wore pretty colourful uniforms. 

So that's 6 28mm figures on foot for 30 points.  Next week I'll having something more to post. 

Monday, January 23, 2017

The Erbprinz

For my second Challenge submission this week I have a single mounted figure representing Karl Wilhelm Ferdinand, Hereditary Prince of the Duchy of Brunswick-Lüneburg and Prince of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel.   Normally the history books for the Seven Years War refer to him as the Erbprinz, which is both shorter and a wicked cool German term.  The figure is taken from a Perry AWI pack of Hessian Commanders, this one cast as Baron Riedesel, the Brunswick general captured at Saratoga.

The man himself, c 1760 in the uniform of the Brunswick Lieb Infantry Regiment

The intricacies of the Brunswick Duchies and their intermarriage with their cousins the Electors of Hanover (and Kings of the United Kingdom)  would make grown men weep and wish for a stats lesson from Miles.  However, essentially the Duke of Brunswick (the Erbprinz's dad) joined the Allies and provided a contingent of solid infantry plus a cavalry men and light troops.  More importantly Brunswick contributed generals to the cause.  The Allied CinC (well after Cumberland got fired) was the Erbprinz' uncle Ferdinand, Prince of Brunswick-Lüneburg who was a Prussian Field Marshall on loan from Freddy the Great.  Ferdinand asked the Erbprinz to act as a General in the army when he took command in 1758.

The Erbprinz was only 23 in 1758 and 28 at the end of the war.  He was known as a good subordinate who was often given indecent independent and important commands.  He also became an expert in the Kleine Krieg, which means I get to field him as a high level officer in my Sharp Practice Games.  The Riedesel figure was very nicely cast and posed and had the right youthful look to be the Erbprinz, a real contrast from the Stirn figure as use as the Hanoverian Engineer Von Drumpf. 

After the Seven Years War, he became the Duke of Brunswick and served as a Prussian Field Marshall.  Yes he was THAT Duke of Brunswick.  He was on the losing end of one of Cressey's Decrisive Battles, Valmy in 1793.  However, Valmy was tactically a draw and he was hampered by the political intrigues and inertia in the Allied, not to mention dysentry in the rank and file.  He was mortally wounded on the field of Auerstadt in 1806, when he commanded the Prussian army.  You may also know of his son, the Black Duke who served with Wellington and died at Quatre Bras in 1815, or his daughter Princess Caroline of Brunswick, who married the Prince Regent and was part of one of the better Royal Scandals.  Another daughter livid a life out of a Regency Bodice Ripper.

However, let's not remember him for the bad events later in life, but as a young energetic and capable young officer.  Let's also not forget that he was seen as an benevolent and enlighten prince who was in support of the initial goals of the French Revolution.  Or that he offered safe haven after the Revolution to a former enemy de Castries who fought him at Kloster Kamp in 1760.

I tried a group shot of all 19 Highlanders plus the Erbprinz but it's not a good shot.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Yet Again More Highlanders

Another post to this year's challenge.

Yes more guys in kilts, this time 6 figures including 4 privates an officer and a piper.  I am a bit reluctant to share these given the absolutely stunning results that Jasper and Benjamin achieved on figures from the same Perry AWI range this week, but I need the points.

The four private soldiers.

Details are the same as the past posts on this regiment.  I have adopted a take it in small bites and enjoy the meal approach to this project hence my posts are coming in dribs and drabs.  I have a total of 31 figures, to make 3 Sharp Practice groups plus leaders etc.  This lot brings me to 19 figures completed, about 2/3 of the way there.  But I need a break from kilts for a bit so will be shifting gears a bit.

I need to fix the green lapels on Archie in the top right, there should be no lapels with white lace.
Officer and piper

I followed Kronoskaf for the piper uniform, reversed facings with Royal Stewart tartan, but I am more than a little doubtful on the provenance.  Any pictures I can find from the period tho pipers in scarlet jackets with Black Watch tartan.  Plus I doubt anyone was going wear Royal Stewart only 15 years after Culloden!  But it's a pretty tartan and makes the piper distinctive.  Being green on red with white overstripes I had to do more than my impressionistic approach to the Royal Stewart.  I was happy with my result until I saw Benjamin's efforts 😢 which rather put me to shame.

Again gotta fix Archie's lapels!

Saturday, January 14, 2017

More Highlanders for the SYW

A second post for Janaury 12th but no points bomb.    I have finished another 8 men for my 28mm SYW Highlanders.   Once again these are from from Perry, taken from the AWI  line.

It was a bit of a fight getting these to the finish line.  I had them based and terrain last night, when I realized that I had painted the lapels green instead of leaving them scarlet!  So hasty repaint while getting base paint all over my left hand.  Then the extreme cold, a flood in my university office and an emergency deep freezer defrost.  But here they are.  Phew!

I have to say that I have really been enjoying working on these figures, which is a good thing as I have a total of 30 to finish and I'm less than half way there.  The poses are wonderful and the details crisp which really helps pick out lapels and lace work.  Unlike some I have never had much problem with flash on Perry figures and these were no exception.  I could be that I don't notice, that I pick less popular molds or just that I am use to flash clean up having grown up painting Airfix soft plastics and early 1980s era  historicals.

Uniform wise of course the big item is the kilt, in this case the full meal deal belted plaid.  The tartan for the 87th (Keith's) Highlanders was "Government or Black Watch), which is one of the easier ones to paint.  At the time this was likely not strictly regimented (that's a Victorian intervention) and my guess is that various woollen mills were give an order based on an approximate description.

I used a dark blue base coat (mix of 50:50 Paynes Grey and Ultramarine Blue) with a cross hatched green pattern on top.  With the pleats and fold in the back, the green pattern become more "impression of cross hatching".  Over all the aim is to get a pattern that is a combination of dark blue and green in approximately the right tartan.  Pictures of reenactors (have I mentioned dhow much I love Pinterest) show that from any distance, the colours bleed into each other and the actual tartan becomes indistinct.  Add movement to the mix and you want a blue/green blur.

To provide some justification, I present as Exhibit A my go to source picture on Kilts.
Moi circa 1975 aged +/-13

By my count that is 8 figures @ 5 points each =40 points.  Woohoo, yeah me!