Thursday, 26 November 2015

Bavarian Blues

Der Kriegspielers DK 174: Bavarian Line Infantry
I'm going to be busy with other things over the next few days, so this week's post is a few days early.

My commission is still not complete, and the reason for it is not totally unrelated to this chap.

The sad truth of it is that I've been captured by a horde of Bavarians. As they're going to require rather a lot of flags, I thought I'd better better find out whether trying to paint my own was going to be feasible. I should, perhaps, have found this out before succumbing to them.

Der Kriegspielers DK 174: Bavarian Line InfantrySo here is my first attempt. The figure is a Der Kriegspielers DK 174: Bavarian Line Infantry, at the Ready. I chose him because his musket was broken off at the hand and thus the prospect of removing the rest of it would be altogether less traumatic. I don't think I'd really have the nerve to hack into a perfectly serviceable figure.

I think there's definitely room for improvement!

I promise that there will be no more mucking about until I've completed the commission.


Saturday, 21 November 2015

A Whiff of Grapeshot

Der Kriegspielers DK 22: French Line Artillery, 1809
The small commission I'm working on is not quite ready to put on show, but all is not lost as the French artillery detachment I've been working on alongside it is almost complete. I decided to have a go at these as something was clearly required to deal with all those pesky Prussian cavalry

Der Kriegspielers DK 22: French Line Artillery, 1809Three of the figures are Der Kriegspielers DK 22: French Line Artillery, 1809. The fourth man holding the rammer, however, is rather more unique, being a conversion of the Hinton Hunt figure FN 254: French Line Infantry Voltigeur 1807-1812, charging. Roy very kindly supplied this man as part of a swap for the Young Guard Voltiguers I painted for him earlier this year

The gun they are serving is a French 8 pounder which the chaps over at Warrior confirm was manufactured by them. I'm undecided about whether or not to repaint it, but may leave it as it is as the paint job is not too bad. I'm also not at all sure about what I would use for French Artillery Green as Humbrol doesn't seem to make this colour any more!


Der Kriegspielers DK 22: French Line Artillery, 1809
Der Kriegspielers DK 22: French Line Artillery, 1809

Friday, 13 November 2015

Prussian Garde du Corps

Der Kriegspielers DK 143 Prussian Garde du Corps
DK 143 at the gallop
The First Squadron, Prussian Garde du Corps, are complete.

As the castings I need to finish the Leib Hussars are still in the post I should really press on with the second squadron.

Der Kriegspielers DK 143 Prussian Garde du Corps
A fine body of men
However, there is to be yet another pause in Prussian cavalry production while I deal with another wee project. All will be revealed in the next post.....

In the meantime, I've combined the hussar and garde squadrons to give an impression of what either of the completed regiments might look like. It's making the French rather nervous.


Prussian Cavalry Charge
Vive la France!

Sunday, 1 November 2015

Alberken Interlude

There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio....
Although work continues on the Prussian Garde du Corps (and the hussars too, when I can get some more), I haven't got anything to show at the moment apart from an intriguing little bit of wargaming history.

Alberken FN 21: Old Guard Grenadiers
Pristine in their shininess! Never been out of the box, I'd say
Pictured is a box of Alberken toy soldiers. I'd heard tell from the wonderful The Old Metal Detector blog and from a few other sources that Alberken (later to become Minifigs) had originally sold their ranges in boxes of ready-painted soldiers, so I was delighted to find a real example of something that is probably quite rare these days. What also made them fun was that they seem to have been produced at more or less the very moment that Alberken of Newark in Nottinghamshire became Miniature Figurines of Southampton.

Alberken FN 21: Old Guard Grenadiers
..and so they emerge, blinking, into the sunlight!
The other reason I bought it was that the troops inside were French Old Guard Grenadiers (Alberken code FN 21), which you can never have too many of in my book. However, having got them out and had a look at them, I find that I don't have the heart to strip them down and repaint them. Before I came to New Zealand I was a military museum curator (which is just about the best job in the world, by the way, as long as you're not too fussed about trying to get a mortgage), and such an act would be sacrilege to a museum professional. What is more, despite being about 50 years old, they appear to be in absolutely mint condition. I wish I could say the same.

Alberken FN 21: Old Guard Grenadiers
That strange tubular object is a pistol, I think!
Click on the pictures for a closer look.

Although the poses seem to be unique to Alberken, it is instantly clear why the appearance of this range led to the most almighty copyright row with Hinton Hunt.

Alberken FN 21: Old Guard Grenadiers
Rare, interesting and  completely useless!
However, I think it's fair to say that they're not up to the Hinton Hunt standard. I've learnt from experience that there is often a lot more detail once the paint is off, but in this case I suspect that there is probably not all that much to be found!

So, not the solution to my Old Guard Grenadier shortage, but little charmers all the same.