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Drifting towards Rorke

HaT's British Colonial infantry in 1:72: Zulu Wars

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Paul C03/10/2013 11:16:24
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This was an unplanned impulse buy at EM. Had to have these: a lovely, beautifully modelled, set of British Infantry meant for Zulu War scenarios, but which could be adapted to so much else in the period roughly 1870 - 1914.

Plastic Soldier Review really praises this set, and it's not hard to see why. These have got to be towards the top end of excellence in 1:72 figure sets.

**LINK**

The story begins a few years ago when I set up lots of the old ESCI, now Italeri, British and Zulu figures for wargaming:

british colonial infantry2.jpg

Great little figures, but when these are the only set in your army, the poses tend to get repetitive after a while. So when I saw these:

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Had to have them. No question about it. Discovering the red paint I'd brought with me in my basic travelling set was a bit too dark and murky - a GW colour meant not for top applications but for base coats and mixing - I even took the plunge and bought a couple of Vallejo reds. (Not from EM: Cross's art supplies on Sandgate Road in Folkestone was selling them, at £1.99 each. 40p cheaper than GW).

Vallejo: possibly the next step beyond GW. I really like the squeezy bottles and nozzle applicator allowing me to control the amount I get on the pallette! Bright clean colour, too.

Paul C03/10/2013 11:34:52
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The figures have been taken off the sprue, cleaned up, and based separately. They divide into three, possibly four, separate groups: They were undercoated in GW "Mephiston Red" base colour.

i) Support and Commisary figures;

ii) Regular infantry;

iii) Dismounted officers, ensigns and buglers;

iv) Mounted officers.

The figures have had boots (pure black) trousers (dark blue) jackets (pure Vallejo red over murky GW undercoat) and helmets (off-white tending to pale khaki) blocked in.

The Commisariat figures have been painted with dark blue jackets - GW "Enchanted Blue" and "Chaos Black" in a 2:1 mix.

A start has been made on adding belts and cross-straps in GW "Skull White". Some figures have had cuff turnbacks painted in either Royal Blue or line infantry green - keeping my options open here, as the 24th were not a royal regiment and therefore had green distinctions rather than the blue of a unit distinguished with the prefix "Royal".

Those new Vallejo paints: they look different in the bottle to the way they apply from the pallete, I have learnt.

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Paul C03/10/2013 11:52:32
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First attempt at blocking in the Union Flag - there are four flags here which present an appealing challenge, lovely large blank canvases!

It needs a little tidying, but given the drape of the material, I'm pleased the first attempt worked this well:

zulu wars british 005.jpg

Note the seperate arms to go with some figures - these are still in the disappointingly grimy-looking GW "Mephiston Red" undercoat.

Paul C03/10/2013 13:09:18
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All white straps, belts and pouches blocked in: some figures will require tidying and remedial attention with the red. Reins and equine upholstery added to the horses. 

zulu wars british 009.jpg

Edited By Paul C on 03/10/2013 13:09:48

Johnny Gers03/10/2013 13:17:34
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Good work Paul. Nice to do some thing you enjoy.

Johnny

Paul C03/10/2013 17:10:02
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Thanks Johnny! i'm just lucky, at the moment, to have the leisure time to have some expanded enjoyment out of my modelling.

Current state of play on these figs: I have gone back over them with the scarlet and the blue respectively, to tidy up and pick up on areas I might have missed or overpainted. I have also blocked in the flesh tones (GW "Tallarn flesh" is good). The blue trousers have been shaded slightly in a darker blue, and highlighted by dry-brushing in a paler blue-grey. As more detail is added and I get more and more familiar with the setup of these figures, it's getting better and easier.

zulu wars british 012.jpg

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Paul C03/10/2013 21:49:59
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And at the end of the day this is where we stand.

Rifles have been painted in a red-brown with metalwork picked out in black. A dark brown wash was overlaid. The next stage will be to pick out the metalwork with a drybrushing of gunmetal to catch the highlights, and the woodwork with a drybrush of lighter brown.

Faces were washed in a darker flesh (GW). The next stage here will be to highlight with a drybrush of a lighter version of the base flesh - again to catch and enhance highlights. Some figures have moustaches and Victorian sideburns. Hmm..

The helmets were given a wash in dilute khaki to bring out the pugarree strap running around the base of the crown. Again, they are to be highlighted in white to even the colour balance out.

I'm quite pleased with the shading/highlighting of the trousers: above the waist clearly needs work (highlight/shading of the scarlet coats and highlights as above). We are, I think, beginning to get there!

zulu wars british 016.jpg

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Work on the mounted officer. (one of four)Many of these figures come with optional separate right arms. I have used the sword arm: these fit quite snugly with a peg-and-hole arrangement. (CA will secure) colours just blocked in at present, highlighting and shading yet to be done.

zulu wars british 019.jpg

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Paul C04/10/2013 20:45:07
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Facings and turnbacks painted on. It's funny: the more detail you try to add, the more you see. I've only just noticed some of the figures have got sergeants' and corporals' stripes on the arms: all that was necessary was to lightly overbrush in a gold-yellow colour.

Green facings for the 24th were done in GW "Goblin Green" - terrible name, lovely vibrant colour.

zulu wars british 001.jpg

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zulu wars british 004.jpg

Helmets have also been tidied with an overbrushing in paler near-white.

Johnny Gers04/10/2013 20:49:07
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13111 forum posts
3675 photos

Really coming together Paul. Good work there.

Johnny

Paul C05/10/2013 00:00:20
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3425 forum posts
6594 photos
4 articles

Thanks Johnny... one last shot for tonight. Metalwork has been picked out in brass and gunmetal as applicable: rifles, belt buckles, sword hilts, epaulettes lightly dry-brushed, even flicked over buttons on one or two figures (what the hell).

Faces have also been drybrushed with a lighter skin tone - not perfect, but this begins to bring out the detail.

zulu wars british 012.jpg

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