Friday, 8 January 2021

Greys Anatomy

Last year Mark very kindly sent me six Scots Greys castings he had spare from his own project. The figures had all seen better days with swords missing, limbs detached from bases, and some tails docked but I thought it would be a good challenge to restore them.

This is how they arrived, rather sorry looking but full of potential.
The first step was to insert a brass rod into the docked tails (Ooh Matron!) to give the putty something to stick to.

Here is the tail built up using Magic Sculp putty. This was quite fiddly and my first efforts resulted in tails that were too fat ("you're not going to leave them like that are you?" said Mrs S, who had suddenly become an expert on miniatures restoration) so I had to carve away my handiwork until they looked right.

I gave one of the figures a trumpet as he was already missing his sword. This is now my tried and tested method - glue a piece of brass rod to his mouth and hand and then build up the trumpet shape with putty.

The missing swords were replaced from some donor DK figures I had lying around. These were spliced into the figure's arm and then made good with putty, not perfect but should look ok when painted.

And here they are finished (a couple of bases needed filling too as there were holes).

The plan now is to paint them and add them to my current squadron of six figures to make up a full unit – you can never have too many Scots Greys.


Wellington Man said...

Looking putty good, Ian!

You've had much more fun with your cavalry than I have. I've thought for ages that your mixed regiments idea, although driven by figure availability, was a stroke of genius. Apart from anything else, what wonderfully colourful regiments you ended up with. I think I'm going to miss them a bit.

Best regards

Stryker said...

Never fear WM, I can still reconvene the units as they were for old times sake if necessary!

Heinz-Ulrich von Boffke said...

Carry on, Ponsonby! Does anyone make Bob Todd or Frankie Figures in 20mm? Kidding aside, great looking repairs on those Greys. They should look lovely once painted.

Best Regards,


Stryker said...

I don't think so Stokes although I swear that the face on one of the figures looks like Sid James!

'Lee. said...

Seeing them in the raw like that it really is remarkable how well you paint them up Ian! Great job on the restoration of the tails etc.

Stryker said...

Thanks Lee, I'm looking forward to finally getting some paint on them after all the preparation!

Mark Dudley said...

I am planning to start some Cavalry as my next unit myself. Your restoration has made me ponder doing my Scots Greys next. I will have to fix the docked tails on mine as well and seeing what you have achieved has given me the inspiration to try fixing them using milliput.

Looking forward to seeing these chaps completed.

Stryker said...

Mark, the hardest part is replacing the swords as from past experience this bit needs to be 'over engineered' to make sure they stay put - I'm hoping these guys weapons will not come adrift in the heat of battle!

Rob said...

Your cavalry are turning into a serial education for me - did the British not dock their horses?

Stryker said...

Rob, I believe it was only the light cavalry, I'm sure Marcus Hinton wouldn't have got a detail like that wrong!

Rob said...

I have been Googling a bit and it seems quite a commonly held view that they did...

... is Marcus really reliable?

Stryker said...

Rob, that may be right I guess but I don't intend to cut the tails off! As this is a project to recreate a 1970s wargame army I'm happy to stick with my 1970s sources.

Stryker said...

I had this interesting stuff Goya:

Regarding British HC horses, trumpeters were forbidden to ride greys (although this may not have been obeyed in practice) and horses (except for the Life Guards and Horse Guards) were nag tailed - docked. Here is the 1799 order.

From General Charles P. Ainslie's The Royal Regiment of Dragoons – The Historical Record of the First or The Royal Regiment of Dragoons; Chapman & Hall: London, 1887. pp. 106-107, provides the following quote:

10th August 1799 Order from Horse Guards
The heavy cavalry, with the exception of the two regiments of Life Guards and Royal Regiment of Horse Guards, are to be mounted on nag-tailed horses.
The First, or King's Regiment of Dragoon Guards; the First, or Royal Regiment of Dragoons; the Third, or King's Own Regiment of Dragoons, are to be mounted on black nag-tailed horses.
The Second, or Queen's Regiment of Dragoon Guards, are to be mounted on nag-tailed horses of the colours of bay and brown.
The Second, or Royal North British Regiment of Dragoons, are to be mounted on nag-tailed grey horses.
All other regiments of heavy cavalry on the British establishment are to be mounted on nag-tailed horses of the colours of bay, brown, and chestnut.
The custom of mounting trumpeters on grey horses is to be discontinued, and they are in future to be mounted on horses of the colour or colours prescribed for the regiments to which they belong.

Harvey Calvert,
Horse Guards

Anonymous said...

Excellent job, just what is needed to reinforce your British cavalry, look forward to seeing painted and taking their place with the rest of the regiment.


Stryker said...

Thanks Paul, I'm looking forward to painting them - the first six were completed in 2008!

David said...

Renovating old figures and making them serviceable again is one of my favorite things. You have done a marvelous job of bringing these back to life!


Stryker said...

Thanks David, it was a challenge but I enjoyed it!

James Fisher said...

Excellent renovations Ian. Now not 'would', but 'good' that there are more of the Greys!
Regards, James

Stryker said...

Thanks James!