Napoleonic & ECW wargaming, with a load of old Hooptedoodle on this & that


Tuesday, 21 July 2020

British Dragoons Finished

I see that it is only three and a half weeks or something since I finished restoring the troopers for my two late-war dragoon regiments, but my painting mojo fell into a trough of some sort after that, and it's only now that I've finished the command figures to complete the units. Anyway, it's done, and I'm pleased with them.



These originally were part of Eric Knowles' vast collection. They were a single regiment, but I use smaller unit sizes than Eric did, so I have split them into two. Here, then, are the 1st (Royal) and 3rd (King's Own) Dragoons, which, as far as I can tell (courtesy of Mr Franklin's book), were pretty much identical. The only slight issue was that I came upon a trumpeter of the Royals in reversed colours in one of the plates in Commandant Lachouque's Waterloo, but that seems unlikely enough by this late date for me to disregard it.

The troopers are Hinton Hunt one-piece castings (OPC), catalogue no BN 40. There were no matching command figures, so my solution was to mount SHQ/Kennington officers and trumpeters on Hinton Hunt horses (BNH3). Everything went pretty well - a lot of carving was needed to get the castings to fit, but it was an easy enough job, and they look fine. In fact the separate HH horses are very slightly taller than the OPC jobs. I thought of filing down the bases a bit, but these are very old HH castings, and the alloy is very soft anyway, so I left them. They are fine.

I have now placed them safely in The Cupboard, and can move on to the next challenge with a light heart!

24 comments:

  1. I don’t know about you Tony, but for me there’s something extra satisfying about finishing off a group of figures that have been hanging around for a while.

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    1. Yes, I guess so - it rather depends on whether the reason I stopped painting them was because I had second thoughts about them! My personal lifetime record (unless I think of a longer one later on) was the British 58th Foot. I started painting them sometime around 1983 (before the Jazz Band Sabbatical) and finished them in 2001, as far as I recall, when I moved to the farm. They spent the interim years glued on a hardwood stick, with just the white undercoat and the first coat of red done. They took some knocks on the way, as well, including two house moves! That says something about me - I lost a wife and a job and a lot of money on the journey, but I never lost a Les Higgins bayonet.

      Come to think of it, there are numerous odd projects lying in the spares box which I slapped some paint on in the Dark Ages, just to see how they looked, and they never got finished, but they probably never will, so that's different.

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    2. Lovely stuff those, well done.
      I loved the comment about having lost wife, job, money along the way but never a bayonet. I may borrow that from time to time, if that's ok.

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    3. Yeah, that is a great quote!

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    4. Some people get to redefine the limits of glory, but where's the fun in that?

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    5. Jazz. I knew it! The Devil’s music.

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    6. Jazz - that's the one - 3000 chords played to 4 people.

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  2. Nicely done Tony, a fitting treatment of these lovely old figures!

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    1. Hi Ian - yes, I'm pleased with them. It does require some thought to strike a balance between respecting their provenance and making them look smart! A sensitive refurb is not necessarily any less work than a strip and repaint, but St Peter is watching...!

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  3. Well restored Tony. Good to see more Hinton Hunt figures get a new lease of life. Cheers Greg (Delta Coy Blog)

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    1. It's a privilege to be the latest enthusiast to get to borrow them for a while!

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  4. In my experience, wives and jobs come and go but toy soldiers are forever. I'm afraid I've lost too mand batonets and swords over the day. Rather a careless man apparently.

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    1. Ross, perhaps your observation has summed up the wargamer’s human condition perfectly.

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    2. There's a lot of incidental philosophy here!

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  5. I applaud your effort to place SHQ command figures on Hinton Hunt Horses. That is over and above! The final result is lovely!
    I have recruited a few SHQ British riflemen, who with a head swap, are about to serve as Brunswick Oels. I am trying to figure out how to incorporate a Hinton Hunt style base so they won't stick out quite so much like a sore thumb!

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    1. The SHQ/HH blend worked better than I expected - I'd been warned it would be next to impossible - maybe I was lucky in the choice of subject! One thing I observed was that removing a lot of metal from between the legs of the SHQ riders made them sit snugly on the horses - just like OPC figures, in fact!

      As for your constructed Brunswickers, I should just leave teh bases as they are. Paint them up nicely and you will forget in about 3 days that there was a problem. If they're not Hintons, that's fine, you are too much of a gentleman to pretend anyway! If someone is crass enough to comment on the bases, just give them a pitying smile (it's worth practising this in the mirror - I practise so that people don't think I'm having a seizure - a raised eyebrow actually makes this worse).

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  6. Great progress on the refurb. project, Tony! How many more left to push into the reconditioning queue?

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    1. Thanks Jon - it's going OK - there's a big supply of figures to work away on, but in truth I have too many for any practical purposes, so I should do some weeding before long, to get a clearer picture! I have enough French Guard Lancers for about 5 regiments, for example, which would be fine for a display in a museum, but is about 3 more regiments than I could possibly need. And then there's the cuirassiers...

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  7. Lovely old figures Tony, great provenance and they look excellent.

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    1. Thanks Lee - like a lot of my friends on here, you are very supportive about my painting, and it's always very good for the morale (better than average dice, certainly), so I do appreciate it. I can only paint in my own style, and I try to respect the traditions of the figures!

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  8. The HH and SHQ figures did match in quite well. To be honest I wouldn't have noticed if you hadn't mentioned it.

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    1. Thanks Ray - people not noticing sometimes is as good as gets!

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  9. They look splendid Tony...
    I have to say I rather like your painting style... it’s clean and tidy... and consistent.

    I had to think where I was when you weren’t painting your 58th regiment of foot...

    I was still living in Edinburgh and had just started designing for an up and coming company called Citadel Miniatures.... how time flies... ūüėĀ

    All the best. Aly

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    1. Thanks Aly - very much. It would be inaccurate to imagine me doing no painting at all for 18 years - that's like the movie where Schubert is working on his Unfinished Symphony when he suddenly slumps over the manuscript. No - it was just that the 58th didn't make any progress for a long time - frequently they were actually in the wrong house, which you will recognise as a major problem!

      However the period of my Jazz Band Sabbatical was obviously a significant time for the wargaming world. When I re-emerged into the hobby I found that all my enamel paints had gone hard, that everyone used acrylics, that all the makes of figures I loved and collected had vanished and - most important - eBay was coming over the horizon! I should dig out the 58th and feature them in a short post, I think!

      Keep well, maestro.

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