Friday, 19 February 2021

More Blues

The white frozen stuff has finally gone, the temperature in the Hut is back to a nice balmy 4 degrees, and I’m back painting British heavy cavalry. I’ve had to do this because increasing the Greys to a full unit has left me with half a unit of Royals that now need to be expanded to a full regiment.

Two things I noticed when I started to paint, firstly, I realised that I had erroneously painted the six existing figures as officers rather than troopers. The reason appears to be that my Blandford shows an officer and I never bothered to read the text. No problem, this just adds to the 1970s authentic feel of this project because it’s the sort of thing I would have done aged 12.

These are the first two of the extra 6 figures I need to complete the unit. They are both vintage castings of BN60 Household Cavalry Trooper but I have converted the one on the left to a bugler.

Secondly, I clocked that on half the existing figures I had failed to paint the scabbards. I’ve played with these figures on quite a few occasions but never spotted that before which makes me wonder just how much detail is actually worth painting if I don’t even notice it? Answers on a postcard please.

Tuesday, 9 February 2021

More 1745 British (Off Topic #30)

I have spent a good part of today staring out of our kitchen window as our neighbour’s car across the lane has gradually disappeared under a layer of snow now 8 inches thick. It’s getting to the point where we probably couldn’t get our own car down the lane even if there was somewhere to go.

With a forecast of minus 7 Celcius tonight (and it always gets 2 degrees colder here than the BBC says) I took advantage of a short break in the weather to remove all my paints and the painting tray from the cabin so I could set up work next to Mrs S’s jigsaw puzzle workstation in the kitchen (“do you really have to bring all that in here?” – “YES” I answered).

I'm going for a 1:20 figure to man ratio which makes Semphill's Foot 20 figures strong. The Grenadier companies were split between the flanks so there will be 2 figures at either end of the line. This will mean they are over represented but they will look pretty.

I did manage to finish up the first ‘base’ of Semphill’s Foot a couple of days ago. I have really enjoyed painting these, but they were more time consuming than I hoped (I’m always over optimistic about how long it will take to paint something). My plan is to base the British infantry in 4’s on 40mm x 40mm bases. At the moment the figures have a layer of gloss varnish but I’m not sure yet of the final finishing or basing style.

Finding any information on the backs of the Grenadier caps has proved more difficult than the fronts so there is some artistic licence here.

I will be returning to the Hinton Hunts soon but I have a few items for my Boer War project to complete first.

Thursday, 4 February 2021

Scotland Forever!

Here they are The 2nd (Royal North British) Dragoons finished at last. The figures are all vintage Hinton Hunt castings brought together from different sources over the course of thirteen years, stripped, repaired and repainted by me.

Lock up your Eagles, here they come!

Ponsonby with the full Union Brigade - the Scots Greys, the Irish Inniskilling's and the English 1st Royal Dragoons. 

I’ll be staying in Heavy Cavalry mode for the next unit – The Blues.

Friday, 22 January 2021

Painting Rocking Horses

Looking back on the blog I see that it’s thirteen years since I last attempted to paint horses for the Greys (click here). This time around at least I have those original figures to use as a painting guide and fortunately I made a note of the colours I used.

Restoration work complete, the six figures are currently on the painting desk. I had to abandon painting tonight as the temperature outside the hut has dropped to minus 2 and the heater was struggling to get up to +8 inside, hopefully it will be warmer tomorrow.

I don’t usually make very much effort with my horses, but I’ve had to with these and in this instance they have taken almost as much time to paint as the riders. Hopefully I’ll have the whole lot finished sometime next week.

Tuesday, 19 January 2021

Sempill’s Foot (Off Topic #29)

I have had an interest in the ‘45 Rebellion for quite a few years fostered in part by visiting the Culloden battlefield back in 2011. As a wargame project though it has remained pretty much a pipedream due largely to the lack of any figures that took my fancy.

Just after we moved to Scotland four years ago my son-in-law took me to the Falkirk wargames show (Carronade) where I first laid eyes on the superb range of 28mm Jacobite wars figures made by Crann Tara Miniatures. It was a temptation I resisted until now.

This is my test figure - a British Hatman from the 25th (Sempill's) Foot. The figure is beautifully sculpted and was a joy to paint - no need to make up any detail on this one!

This will not be a major project and for the moment I only have enough figures for one British regiment and one Jacobite regiment. I’m not sure if I will ever get as far as wargaming with these figures and they may just become a display case item, but I do always like having something else on the go as a change from painting Hintons.

Friday, 15 January 2021

DK Dragoons

The sharp witted amongst you may have realised that in expanding the Inniskilling’s I made my squadron of six DK British Dragoons redundant. The solution to this was to refurbish another six figures to make them up to a full unit.

The figures are Der Kreigspieler 825-215 British Dragoons, and these castings were all donated to me by Don over 10 years ago. I have only touched up Don’s old paintwork, put socks on the horses and in some cases changed the facing colours – I also converted one to a trumpeter because you know how much I like doing that now.

The unit will represent the 1st Royal Dragoons who were the English component of the Union Brigade at Waterloo and famously captured the Eagle of the French 105th Regiment.

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.