Thursday, November 23, 2017

Voluntarios de Navarra - Spanish Militia

The latest additions to my Spanish Napoleonic army muster out for a Thanksgiving Day review; hopefully they won't be Turkeys on the battlefield!


The title of the unit comes more from their Adolfo Ramos flag than the uniform. They are in a fairly generic brown uniform with yellow facings. Many other units had blue coats, etc. 


The faces have nicely "Spanish" feel to them. These are once again Brigade Games figures, sculpted by the very talented Paul Hicks. 


The figures are wearing "Top Hats" and a variety of different blanket rolls, packs, etc. 


I used a darker brown for the trousers than the jackets. The close up shots show I was a bit sloppy with the red hat bands; I have corrected that since with some black lining. 


Happy Thanksgiving to all who celebrate it! Among the many things that I am thankful for are the readers and followers of this blog, and my many wargames friends and fellow bloggers, both near and far, and the authors of the rules and books we use, as well as the sculptors, manufacturers, distributors, and everyone else who makes it possible to enjoy our niche hobby in such abundance. 

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Wizard Kraft - the remainder of the Kickstarter product arrives!


    The balance of my large pledge for the Wizardkraft Kickstarter was delivered last week. Unfortunately, William has suffered from a variety of health and product ingredient problems that delayed his fulfilling the pledges as quickly as he had hoped. I was in no rush for the product (aside from the dry river beds/wadis that William had already delivered in time for Historicon in July, so it was never an issue to me; indeed, I suggested he fulfill my order among the last of them in order to get product out to other backers sooner. Here's what I received...

First up is my "Basic Box" ($75 pledge), which was a 1" river set with a number of special backer reward items.


This medium sized lake was a backer reward for pledges of $25 or more.


This small swamp was an early bird special for the first 30 backers of $25 or more.


This 12" river ford piece was an early bird special for the first 25 backers of $75 or more. 


These two Y pieces  were an early bird special for pledges of $150 or more. It is seen with  two 6"30 degree curve pieces (one with rocks) from the "Basic Box" set. I especially like the way that you can make islands using these pieces. 


This interesting piece with a river running through a swamp was part of the early bird special for pledges of $250 or more... 


as was this river originating (or ending)  in a swamp.


Two 12" river lengths were part of the Basic Box set; this is the 1" water width, blue water, temperate flock version of the set. 


Also part of the "Basic Box" were one each  4" and 8" segments; I find these very handy when setting up terrain for a historical battle.


Three more 4" curved sections, one with rocks, completes my "basic Box"  river set - 5 feet of rivers in all, not including the various extras. . 


Next is a different, new item - a plowed field set . I think the two angled fields were included by William as bonus items. William says they are deliberately sold without crops so that you can add your own (or not). I have some strips of "potato plants" that will look good with these.


A close up of the largest field to show the texture and mixed flock colors. 


With some of my leftover pledge funds, I got some more items - One large and one small swamp - "temperate" flock with muddy water. Very nice!


A really useful 1" to 2" transition piece, with rocks. 


Another transition piece, this one from dry river bed to blue water. 


A 1" to 2" 135 degree curved transition piece.


Four each 8" and 4" sections, 2 with rocks. I already have a great many 12" straight pieces. These help a lot with the flexibility of a river layout. The ability to add rocks top pieces is a new feature resulting from the Kickstarter. I like them!


I went a bit crazy with my Kickstarter pledge trying to get the project over the top, so there's also a whole  1" large river set, seen above. This one is to be donated to Jared's middle school Wargames club next month.  This set includes 1 each of the Small Straight, Small 45 Degree Bend, Small 45 Degree  Bend and Transitions sets. (In total, 3 x 12" straight, 1 x 8" straight, 1 x 4" straight, 1 x 12" bend, 2 x 6" bend, 3 x 4" bend, 1 x left and 1 x right fork, 1 center fork, and 1 x 12" section with Ford). Aside from a couple of small pieces on back order, the above, along with the large dry river set received in July , completes my Kickstarter rewards. 


Hopefully, William will finish delivering the last of the backer rewards shortly, and then will be able to resume accepting new orders soon thereafter at Wizardkraft terrain. 

Monday, November 13, 2017

Spanish Cazadores (Light Infantry) #2 - Gerona

The second of my Light Infantry battalions wearing the 18-02 uniform. Gerona was of course also later the site of one of the bitter sieges of the Peninsular war, where the Spanish held out against the French for months. 


This unit also wears the elaborate hussar style uniform. These are once again Brigade Games figures, sculpted by Paul Hicks. This time they are in a variety of "Firing Line" poses. The casting on all these Brigade Games figures is exceptionally clean.


I couldn't find any information on the colors of the forage cap the hornist is wearing, so i went with dark green trimmed with yellow; in the other unit I did the base of the cap in red instead of green, for a bit of variety. I also couldn't find anything about the color of the cords, so I went with green as being the most likely. 


I used the darker version of my "Magic Wash on this unit, and the lighter on the previous unit. The darker wash has brought out the details in the turban of the helmet better.


Their flag is the "generic" Spanish Napoleonic Ordenanza from the Warflag site; I have since taken some white paint to the black lines at the edges of the flags. 

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Adolfo Ramos Flags - Spanish Napoleonic Standards

As my Spanish Napoleonic Army includes figures actually manufactured in Spain (Miniaturas Dos de Mayo), I figured that actual Spanish Flags would be a good match as well. Adolfo Ramos also, perhaps not surprisingly, has the most extensive range of Spanish Napoleonic flags that I have found, reasonable postage charges, and excellent prices (1.5 euros for the basic version of the flags in 25mm, as seen below), all of which clinched the decision. So I ordered about 2 dozen!  The flags arrived in less than 2 weeks.


Each battalion carried 2 flags, one Coronela, equivalent to the King's Color, and one Ordenanza, equivalent to the Regimental Color.  Both had white fields. The Coronela flags had the Royal arms in the center, depicted quite quite large, and the provincial or other regimental emblems in the corners. The above flags are all Coronelas. 


The second flag, or Ordenanza, bore a large red "cross raguly" of Burgundy upon it, with once again provincial or other regimental badges in the corners, as seen above. The "branches" are noted to sometimes be shown as opposite and others alternating. Other minor variations were common as seen above. 


The Royal artillery followed a similar pattern, but on a blue field as seen above, whilst the Swiss regiments had very different patterns, reminiscent of the patterns used by the Swiss regiments in Royal service under the Ancien Regime in France. Don't ask me how the Hungarian flag crept in there, though!  :-)


Cavalry flags, one per squadron, mostly had a red field (the Osprey by Wise/Rossignoli says white), with the royal arms on one side and the provincial arms on the others, without the corner shields. 


The flags of the Royal Guards had (mostly) Purple fields for the Coronelas, and (mostly) white fields for the Ordenanzas. Details of the variants are found in the same Osprey (Flags of the Napoleonic Wars, volume 3). The line cavalry regiment "del Principe" also had a purple field for its flags, in commemoration of their saving the Walloon Guards at the battle of Zaragosa in 1710. 

It appears likely that the Light Infantry Battalions were issued flags as well, as their cadre included flag bearers. I used generic Warflag Ordenanzas for their standards (see preceding post), as little or nothing is know as to their designs, assuming they did in fact exist. 


My first four Spanish units, now handsomely equipped with Coronelas by Adolfo Ramos. 


Much better than the bare flagstaffs!

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Spanish Cazadores (Light Infantry) #1 - 1st Barcelona

In 1802, the previous hodgepodge of varied uniforms worn by the Spanish Light Infantry were replaced with a new uniform, which was the same for all 12 battalions, save only for the numbers on the buttons.


These superb Paul Hicks sculpts are from among the figures that I picked up from Brigade games at Historicon in July. 

Bottle green hussar style jackets laced yellow, with red cuffs, shoulder straps and collars, all piped in yellow (I used Delta CC "Straw Paille" for the yellow).


The Light Infantry (Infanteria Ligeria is another designation in Spanish) were noted to often wear brown cloaks over their left shoulder. These fellows seem to prefer their right shoulder, however!


White pants, a red sash, and a Tarleton style helmet with a yellow turban and green plume complete a rather striking ensemble. A "Belly Box" was worn for the cartridges, sculpted but not well seen in these pictures. Officially, this uniform was replaced with dark blue jackets and battalion specific facing colors in 1805, but soldiers of the Romana Division in Denmark are still shown wearing this costume in 1807, and this uniform is far too attractive to pass up, eh?

Monday, October 30, 2017

Spanish Infantry Regiment "Guadalajara", 1808

The fourth and last of my Spanish Line regiments composed of Miniaturas Dos de Mayo figures steps off (there will be quite a few to come from other manufacturers!).

Red is certainly the dominant impression of this regiment, whose origins date back to 1657; the buttons are white metal

The dynamic officer is a high point of the Regimiento de Infanteria de Linea Guadalajara!


Note the red epaulets of the sergeant; in the Spanish army, the NCO epauletes were in the facing color in the 1805 uniforms. 


The white piping on the red collars is c;early seen here. Flags coming soon!


Once again, a variety of encumbrances carried by the soldiers make the figures especially interesting.


Here is the full "Division" of 4 Regiments.


On parade, awaiting their standards, which will bestowed upon them shortly, with suitable pomp!


Most Americans will think of Guadalajara in Mexico first, but it is also both a city and province of Spain, in the la Mancha region. While Gudalajara itself  not a major tourist attraction, the Palacio del Infantada, constructed in the 15th century by the Mendoza family, who held the title of Duke of Infantada, is a marvel of ornate stonework. I found this statue rather interesting, poised outside the facade of the Palacio. 


Detail of the stonewoprk in the Courtyard of the Lions; the palace itself holds a museum devoted to Guadalajara. 

Friday, October 27, 2017

Spanish Infantry Regiment "Reina", 1808


The next Spanish line infantry regiment  completed is  Regimiento de Infanteria de Linea "Reina" - the Queen's regiment. It was first raised in 1537, along with three other regiments, and stands second in seniority only to Regimiento "Rey" - the King's regiment. 


While all of the other Spanish Line regiments have the drummers dressed in the King's Livery (dark blue coats with red facings piped in white - see the earlioer regiments Valencia and Burgos), uin this one regiment, the drummers wore the Queen's Livery instead - red coats faced dark blue, piped in white. 


In 1805, this regiment had Violet facings with silver buttons. I used Delta Ceramcoat "Pansy" for the facing color. One nice thing about white uniforms - the other colors painted over the white really pop!


Once again, these are Miniaturos Dos de Mayo figures from Spain. They had an introductory order for these figures in the Spring of 2014, and I ordered enough for 4 units of 18, 72 figures in all, at a cost of  62 Euros on 3/25/14, about $88, not a bad deal. The shipping was added when the figures were ready to ship on 5/14/14, another 23.5 Euros or about $33 - overseas shipping is a bear! Still not a bad total price even with the high shipping cost. 


I received the figures about June 14, 2014, so not too bad for overseas ordering. Unfortunately, the guys made a mistake with the order and left out about 1/3 of the figures. I got a prom[pt response and they offered to send out the missing figures without additional shipping costs. Time passed, and no more figures arrived. Evidently they were sent August 4th, 2014,  but still hadn't arrived by the end of October.  Evidently, the Spanish postal service is notoriously inept (? corrupt), and another order shipped that day had also failed to arrive, so they again offered to send out a (second) replacement package free of cost to me. 


I didn't push overly hard about the order as I didn't need the figures any time soon, and was a bit familiar with what "mañana"(tomorrow) *really* means in Spanish culture (no offense to my Spanish friends). Still when the 2nd replacement package hadn't arrived by February I contacted them again. The missing 22 figures finally arrived on 3/25/2015... a year and a day after they were first ordered! That is certainly my ball time record for completion of an order!  In defense of the company, they responded promptly to my emails each time, and I wasn't at all aggressive about prodding them. They certainly lost money on the deal, sadly. The name of the company comes from the date of the revolt against French rule, which began in Madrid on May 2, 1808, and was to continue in one frm or another until the French were expelled from Spain in 1814. 


"El dos de Mayo en Madrid", an oil painting by Francisco Goya, which is located in the Museo del Prado in Madrid. The charge of the Mamelukes. Evidently the populace saw the Mamelukes as Moors, further inflaming an already volatile situation. 


Monument to the Heroes of the 2nd of May, Madrid.
(Picture from Wikipedia)