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#44 [url]

Jun 14 10 10:50 PM

Now, assuming (always dangerous) that WF follow the format used with their Ancient Cavalry, a single new horse sprue will be required with horses appropriate to the period and larger than the ponies used in the Ancients sets. There could then be two new sprues done for riders, the first as "generic" Horse and the second as "generic" Dragoons


I would expect that to get more than one full-sized sprue of WSS cavalry, the infantry sets would need to sell really well in the first place.

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#45 [url]

Jun 15 10 5:12 AM

Seriously - want Cavalry - support Infantry big time them up on other forums and get the buzz going.  We can play an integral role in getting the figures we want down the road by helping to market these great figures among our friends and on the internet.

I know I will have a good sized initial purchase and then recurring orders for these.  There are SO many colorful armies to build.  It's a fun, easy time period to wargame and dioramas can look spectacular. 

What would be wonderful of WF - and help promote the products is either a link or an on-site uniform guide ....... nothing super elaborate but showing some of the diversity of possible uniform choices.........can't but help sales.   Maybe something we all can put together for them.......

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#46 [url]

Jun 15 10 6:29 AM

I would expect that to get more than one full-sized sprue of WSS cavalry, the infantry sets would need to sell really well in the first place.


Not necessarily griefbringer. Since the Infantry were already well over-subscribed as a L&UL submission, they have, in effect, already "sold". They performed at least well enough to prompt Tony and Howard into elevating the Infantry above L&UL status and stating that they had decided to make this a "range". As a "range", is it any less-deserving of the essential core troop types than the Ancients or Dark Ages ranges?

Certainly some compromises will have to be made due to the higher tooling cost and other vagaries of plastic vs metal production; probably no Bavarian/French Hungarian Hussars, probably no Bavarian or Imperial Cuirassiers, probably no "native" Polish Cavalry or Cossacks for the later years of "The Deluge" or the GNW or Eastern Imperialists, almost definitely no Turks of any kind for the Siege of Vienna or any other part of the "Turkenkrieg", possibly no pokalems or the odd, "bent" Russian Grenadiers cap, but the majority of us can live with these compromises or find work-arounds.

I respectfully submit this proposition to you: With the production of the 5 sprue's I have mentioned, the already-confirmed Infantry sprue, a new horse sprue (which will be a requirement for any 17th/18th century cavalry), the two Cavalry sprues I suggested, and a Head & Accessory sprue as I suggested; a gamer will be able to build 90% or more of all of the main participant Armies in the LoA and the WSS, and better than 75% of the participants in the GNW. In fact, it would be easier and more economically-feasible to not produce separate artillery sprues than to eliminate either of the Cavalry sprues. Most Nation's Artillery uniforms were little-different than their Infantry uniforms, many actually used Infantry to serve the battalion guns and assist with the train and main batteries, and all of the implements and accessories could be provided for on the Head & Accessory sprue.

Let's make some mathematical assumptions for a moment. First, let's assume that WF uses a "set" quantity of 36 Infantry and 12 Cavalry. Second, let's assume (strictly for the sake of argument) that 1 "set" equals 1 Infantry battalion or Cavalry squadron. A gamer just beginning in this era and wanting a reasonably generic Army (as opposed to replicating a specific OoB), might want 12 Infantry sets, 6 Horse sets and 6 Dragoon sets, and some undetermined number of Head & Accessory sprues (I use these specific numbers only for this argument). Obviously some nationalities will vary these ratios and totals, but these ratios will work for the majority of the main protagonists in a "generic" Army. The big variable here is with the gamer who is adding these figures to an existing collection, and even then the ratios will not shift much unless they've only been painting Cavalry, or only been painting Infantry.

If you choose to build for a set of rules like "BLB" then 1 set equals 2 Infantry battalions or 1 Cavalry regiment, but the ratio only skews slightly, and in favor of buying more cavalry. The ratio also shifts if you play "Le Roi de Soleil" or "Age of Reason", but it goes to 1 set equals 3 Infantry units and 2-3 Cavalry units, so more Cavalry are again required.

Your thoughts?

Sir William the Aged

Bill Sir William the Aged

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#47 [url]

Jun 30 10 1:17 PM

If these are to be "generic" sets, let's not have too many of them! 1 Infantry, 1 (2?) Mounted, and 1 Artillery should suffice to cover most of the bulk.  Two Mounted if Cavalry and Dragoons are sufficiently different and/or there is a desire for Cuirassiers or other 2nd mounted type.

An accessories sprue is a good way to start expanding the possibilities. Add in the possiblity of selected metal bits (hats, heads, hands, or other things) to customize those 2-3 in an army figures.

If the "generics" sell well and the demand is there, then by all means bring on French Dragoons, English Camp Followers in Dutch Service 1702, and anything else WF can think of.

For Artillery - if crew can be made from infantry sprues, I would rather see the effort go to making guns, limbers, powder kegs, linstocks, etc. All the grew-gaws need to dress an artillery park.  I don't think too many of us would complain too loudly at getting a standard infantyr sprue and a sprue of new details as an "artillery crew" package provided the price was not outrageous.

Lots of other modelling subjects include the full kit of the basic version, and then a sprue of extra parts to build specific varrients.

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#48 [url]

Jun 30 10 8:56 PM


With regard to the Cavalry, there are enough differences between Dragoons and "Horse" in the majority of armies to justify separate sprues. With regard to French Dragoons, these really aren't so "special". Since we'll be making some compromises with the "generic" figures, all you really need is a specific set of French heads, the rest of the uniform and saddlery works. If the basic Dragoon sprue includes heads in tricorne, heads in Dragoon "bonnet", heads in floppy hat and one or two bare heads, you're there for the Western armies. Add the heads in karpus from the Accessory sprue and you also have Swedes. Add some heads from the Infantry sprue and you have the Wurtemberg Horse Grenadiers or the French Caribiniers du Roi.

Here's the real issue with "generic" Cavalry for this era: If you ignore Hussars (which we should for now, more later), all of the other Western (and most of the "modern" Eastern) Cavalry falls into one of four categories - Dragoons, "Light" Cavalry (unarmored), "Heavy" Cavalry (breastplate or back and breast, under or over the coat), and true "old school" helmeted Cuirassiers (Bavarian and Imperial, look a bit like late ECW Lobsters). So, here's my logic: Dragoons, a requirement, for the reasons stated above, and Cavalry with open coats and a waistcoat modeled. If the waistcoat is modeled subtly, it can easily be smoothed over with a bit of Green Stuff or liquid plastic sprue to depict a breastplate under the coat. This will suit to depict both the "Light" and "Heavy" Cavalry of the major Western powers. Since the Heavies with armor over the coat and the Bavarian and Imperial Cuirassiers are only going to be specific to certain armies and will probably sell far less than the others, unless WF feels like giving us a Christmas present, these should probably be sourced from another supplier. One idea would be to convert Warlord's ECW Cuirassiers to the Bavarians and Imperialists.

Now, to Artillery "paraphenalia" - For purely economic reasons, we probably won't get any actual wagons, limbers or guns from WF (again, unless they feel generous at Christmas). To replicate a typical OoB for a non-siege force, the quantity needed would be so small in comparison to the other troops needed, that (my opinion only) it just doesn't make economic sense. There are already far too many good choices out there in metal for wagons, limbers and guns (for which the tooling costs are much lower), and too much variety in much of the non-standardised artillery of the period for WF to expend dollars in this area.

And finally, the Gallant Hussar - I recently provided Andrew Copestake (Old Glory UK) with some artwork and references for WSS Hussars for Blue Moon's new 18mm metal range. Since their tooling cost for rubber molds and metal production is so much lower, Blue Moon can afford to include these as an option. In the Western Armies, Bavaria had their first Hussar Regiment in 1688 and their second in 1700, all Hungarian/German/Lithuanian nationals. France employed several squadrons of Hussars beginning in 1692, all foreigners. Austria tended to use whatever native light horse were available depending on the political situation and the threat level from the Turks, including Cossacks. The first "national" and regular, uniformed Hussars were created by France in 1720 and Prussia in 1721. Throughout the period from 1688 to 1710 the dress of the Hussar ranged from almost "native" Croat or Hungarian to almost uniform, but not the later uniform that most of us recognise. In assisting Andy, I was able to locate, in just one collection of period artwork, 7 French examples and 8 Austrian examples, no two of which wore exactly the same dress or had the same horse furniture. I just can't see dedicating the resources for design and tooling to a troop type that, no matter how glamorous, represented only a miniscule portion of the troops fielded, and then only in scouting or skirmishing/raiding roles in the West.

So, I'll stand by my earlier suggestion, 1 set of Infantry, 1 set of Dragoons, 1 set of "Horse", and an Accessory sprue avalilable separately. I'd buy my guns and such from whatever metal supplier I liked or that offered the best sale, I would consider converting Warlord Lobsters for Cuirassiers if I wanted to do Bavarians or Austrians. Maybe a sprue for Cuirassiers could be added down the road if the range really sells well (as in, beyond all expectations). And I would probably gather an assortment of Eastern Hungarian/Croat/Lithuanian types for a couple squadrons of Hussars. But, the above is just my opinion; that and a buck might buy you a cup of coffee.

Sir William the Aged

Bill Sir William the Aged

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#49 [url]

Jul 1 10 4:34 AM

An artillery sprue could be thrown in with an accessory sprue, like the one Bill proposed on another thread here, and this might make a good combination.

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#50 [url]

Jul 2 10 12:50 PM


Please check out the new post on the Generic WSS Artillery thread and let me know your thoughts.

I know that I have opposed creating Artillery sets (and still do in principle), but my layout "experiment" proved to me that it is a "do-able" project.

Sir William the Aged

Bill Sir William the Aged

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#51 [url]

Aug 6 10 5:35 PM

Hello, All!

Bill's proposals are very good. However, if there are too many different sprues proposed we may get none.

I have just reviewed my uniform sources for the period and find that in most armies the Dragoons had the same boots as the Horse - the French, Spanish & Piedmontese  dragoons being the exception. This undoubtedly reflects tactical doctrines as in many armies the dragoons were used as cheaper, second line cavalry, dismounting only of necessity or in the everyday business of foraging, raiding, etc., whereas the French were more inclined to use their dragoons dismounted in major battles as well.

I also saw that most Horse and Dragoons had a belt over the left shoulder only suspending either a carbine or musket on the right with the sabre suspended from a waist belt, usually under the coat. The use of crossbelts seems to be confined to British Horse and some Spanish, Papal and Piedmontese troops - perhaps some French dragoon regiments also had crossbelts especially in the earlier period.

So, if the rider sprue has 4 figures like the Celt cavalry, the bodies could be split at the waist so that the modeller could use a gaitred leg set or a booted one if both could be provided. This could allow position variations as well if the junction was "cleverly done". As the dragoon gaiters were fairly bulky in this period with full tops, the side buckles could be filed away to make another booted figure  with a poor bootmaker  ;-)  .

The upper body sections could then comprise 2 with a single left shoulder belt, one with crossbelts, and perhaps the remaining without any to provide an officer, standard or musician type figure (but see below re command sprue)

I would also suggest that the figures could be moulded with separate heads, like the Roman & Celt figures. This allows variation in position and head type - most should be tricorne types,and the odd bare head & floppy hat or 2  - grenadier hats if needed could be obtained from "spares" from the infantry set if they were not included in this set. 

Any unwanted parts go in the "spares box" or could be swapped with other gamers.

The carbine vs musket dilema can be largely resolved by having separate weapons moulded that can be glued onto the shoulder belt - a clever mould at this scale could even perhaps produce a musket that is easily cut down to a carbine with a couple of strokes of the modelling knife. 

Some or all of the hands of the figures could be empty allowing the modeller to choose sword, pistol or carbine/musket to be held - perhaps the right arm could even be moulded separately allowing various positioning (like the Roman set). Cartridge boxes could also be a separate item to allow various positions (Bill, I have little info on just where these were placed - do you have this info, please?) All this means a little more construction, but aren't the cavalry worth it?  ;-)

I recommend the concept of a separate command sprue. (Perhaps they could even be sold individually, to allow for different unit sizes, organisations, command figures, etc.) 

The officers of this period wore more lace and feathers than rank & file and often wore a breast plate under their coats, and as has been pointed out, also wore sashes. However, a cuirass could be easly added with a little modelling putty over the waistcoat, so isn't essential. There could be a number of officer bodies with some extra arm & head variations added to the sprue so they could be made as officers with sword or pistol- these latter could go on this sprue if there was no space on the "rank & file" sprue. Perhaps one of the bodies could have a cuirass moulded outside the coat. Some of these officer figures could be used as Generals or as mounted Colonels of infantry regiments for those who fancy Old Style big battalion games.) 

There may need to be a cornet figure. Almost every squadron carried a flag in this period and it would be nice to have a specific torso with a baldrick (slightly embroidered) to attach the flag to. However, as these were usually junior officers or NCO's, perhaps they could be made from one of the main sprue types with belt over the left shoulder only. However it would be nice to have appropriate Guidon staves. No moulded flag would be needed as there are so many types to be accommodated it would not be useful, & there are so many nice flags out there (Can I plug the Maverick Models flag site again - brilliant)

Musicians are problematical. Certainly a trumpeter on the command sprue would be essential - perhaps a drummer for dragoons as well, though this & kettle drummers could reasonably be bought in metal if the figs are reasonably consistant with one of the major manufacturers who sell individual figures - the problem with Foundry is those very expensive packs! I note the green-up of the Infantry drummer torso - so if Bill's suggestion of some of the figures being in parts were adopted, this could be the way - separate head, legs & torsos - one dragoon drummer & 1 trumpeter torso in the sprue. The latter could be moulded with hanging sleeves that could be easily removed if not needed. That should cater for the vast majority of types.

The other point is that uniformity was not as great as in later armies, so the odd hat or belt being different is not as big an issue. While I know the dragoons rode inferior mounts in most armies, I'm not sure the difference is so great that it warrants another sprue - it would be nice, but...!

I imagine most armies will not field many full Cuirassiers, unless doing entirely Bavarians, Imperials or Danes, so these as well as artillery pieces could be bought in metal - this would deal with the really exotic musicians like Imperial musicians with exotic head gear, etc. Hussars were so rare in most armies that again they can be bought in metal as specials. The main aim is for a generic set and most of the cavalry were Horse (without cuirass) and dragoons.

Looking forward to the Infantry, Tony, and as others have suggested, the Cavalry as soon as possible after as they are as necessary as the infantry, will sell as well or better, and you don't want us wandering elsewhere to get our mounted support.  

Cheers, Rohan.

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#52 [url]

Aug 6 10 7:07 PM

Hello, again.

As an addendum to the above, could I suggest that a separate hatchet be added as well as swords, etc as many dragoons carried this as well or instead of the sword. Could be useful as spares for the infantry set as well, especially for pioneers, grenadiers and colonial types.

Cheers, Rohan.

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#53 [url]

Aug 16 10 3:48 AM

Hello again, Gentlemen, especially Tony & Howard.

I note mention being made of a new horse sprue to go with this set, and even Bill's proposal for different dragoon & Horse types. 
No mention has been made regarding the shape of the saddle cloth. Most illustrations show either a square ended or a rounded rear end type - the latter could be easily be shaped from the former if moulded on the figure. This would be especially so if only one sprue type was envisaged. 
If 2 sprues were to be contemplated, perhaps the saddle cloth could be moulded to the rider figure, with the horse having only reins, bridle, chest & belly strap (ie like the Front Rank types). I'm not sure how difficult this is to achieve with plastic moulding, though.
My reason for this suggestion is that this may induce WF to contemplate a light & a heavy horse sprue if this could be used for other periods - especially other 18th century types or even Napoloenics should such ranges be contemplated, achieving more "bang for their buck"!
Should that not be the case, then a generic horse with a component saddle cloth, saddle & holsters, etc would be fine.

Cheers, Rohan. 

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#54 [url]

Aug 16 10 10:35 AM


Check out the Ancient Cavalry sets. If (and a big "if" I know) WF follow the same protocol on these sets, then the saddle, cloth and holster covers should be a separate piece(s). The horses would have only the basic tack molded on. If this is the case, then a squared-off saddle blanket would be very easy to trim to a rounded corner.

Also, regarding your earlier post (sorry for not responding sooner), I don't see WF doing the Bavarian and Imperial Cuirassiers (could be wrong, I have been before). I do think, however, that with a bit of work and conversion that it will be possible to turn Warlord's ECW Cavalry into these as needed. My friend Will McNally ("Will's Wargames Blog") recently completed a unit of these for his ECW collection and we discussed this possibility, as he also games the WSS in 20mm. You can see his unit here. Basically, of the four figures on each sprue, two are in buff coat, one is in back & breast without tassets, and one is in back & breast with tassets. The way the buff coat is molded, it would be very easy (with green stuff, liquid sprue, or just a line of paint with talc added) to define a back & breast and paint the straps on. There are enough lobster helmets for all 12 figures, or the cornet, trumpeter or officer could have a floppy hat. As the helmet is separate, the face bars can be easily cut off to make an approximate later Bavarian or Imperial helmet out of it.

The horse comes with a nice, simple square saddle cloth that will work for most and is easily modified. The pistol holsters are separate pieces and can be trimmed in size for later, shorter pistols, or left off as you choose. You can even add a holster cover out of a small blob of green stuff or a small piece of plastic sheet. Right now you can get these on special price directly from Warlord, £15 for a set of 12, buy three and you get the fourth free, along with free World-wide shipping. Or, in the US, Brookhurst currently has them on sale for $20 a set plus shipping, so about the same cost as WF cavalry.

BTW, my apologies to Tony and Howard for advertising another company's product, but since there are so few armies in this period that still used the antiquated late 17th century cuirassier style, I just don't see them as being viable for this range.

Regarding the other mounted troops, I still feel that two sets will cover 90% of what's needed. Each set (one of "heavies" and one of "mediums") will have 12 figures. The horses we know will come 3 to a sprue (if they follow existing design protocol) with some extra heads and suitable for multiple poses. The riders, IMHO, should also come three to a sprue; two complete riders without arms or heads, one rider with separate legs and multiple torso's and no arms or heads, then a selection of arms, heads, weapons and saddles. Using this approach (like they have done for the foot), would allow the multi-piece figure to become an officer, musician, cornet or another trooper. All figures could be in boots and we could probably live with it. However, if WF wanted to, they could try and fit in one set of extra legs in gaiters for Horse Grenadiers or Dragoons that historically wore such, thus one out of every three figures could be a Dragoon in gaiters. I don't think there will be room on the sprue for more than one extra set of legs or more than one multi-piece figure, but I could be wrong. We would have to see some renderings from Tim to be able to play with sprue layout. And, as you point out, more exotic types and definately Hussars could and should be sourced from other suppliers.

I was originally opposed to Artillery, but after doing some research and the mock-up "test" sprue that I did, I now think this set would be very viable. It not only works for this period, but many others as well from the latter third of the 17th century until the reforms of Peter the Great and the French Vallieré system in the first third of the 18th century, and it will work for Colonial actions and Pirate games as well. You could even use it for the artillery of the Alamo defenders in 1836, basically any era still using a simple split-trail carriage. And, as I point out on the Artillery thread, the parts in this set could be used for making carts and wagons as well. I have a very full folder of artwork and references to forward to Tony and Howard if and when they are ready for it.

Bill Sir William the Aged

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#55 [url]

Aug 19 10 4:52 PM

Thanks for the reply, Bill.

I would be ecstatic to see 2 cavalry sets - I can certainly use both. 

Thanks also for the link to Will's site - he has done a nice job. I really had no expectation of WF doing cuirassiers and I have already "recruited" some Reiver Bavarians & Danes - this is more than enough armoured horse for any balanced army. By the way, I'm fascinated by your reference to using talc in paint to detail a cuirass - I'd be grateful if you could elaborate on this technique, please.

I would also support an artillery set. When I have gathered my thoughts, I will post on the artillery thread.

Best wishes, Rohan


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#56 [url]

Aug 19 10 7:36 PM


Ah, the old "talc in the paint" question. Back in the early to mid 70's, when many of us assembled, converted and painted 54mm Historex figures for collector's, Historex used to publich an annual digest. This book was a "must have" for the plunker's out there like me who were always trying to emulate the masters. In addition to the catalog pages, there would be a huge color section of that year's major competition winners by folks like Shepherd Paine, Bill Horan, Pierre Conrad, Peter Wilcox and others. Then there would be several pages of "how to" articles by the masters.

As good as Historex's detail was (and still is), small things like embroidery or sabretache decoration on a Napoleonic Marshal just didn't look right painted on flat. One of the masters came up with the technique of painting the design "wet", then sprinkling with talc (like flocking or terraining a base). Blow off the excess after a few hours and voila!, you have 3D detail ready to be painted in it's final color. Wargamers soon picked-up on this and began to use the same technique to add facial hair, small details (like the edge of a cuirass), small straps, rank chevrons, etc.

This technique requires a little practice, but has the advantage of being easy to gently scrape off if you're not happy with the result, which green stuff and liquid sprue don't. I have seen a very good painter use this to do the elaborate armorial designs on top of a cannon barrel, and I have used it to do some pretty intricate embroidery and moldings on the housings and howdah of an ancient General's elephant. The trick is to work small areas and make sure your paint is still wet when you dust the talc on.

Bill Sir William the Aged

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#57 [url]

Aug 20 10 2:54 AM

Wonderful, Bill. 

Thankyou very much. I guess it would work better with the slower drying oils used then, too. I can't wait to try it out, where was that Burgundian tabard?!!  :-)

Cheers, Rohan.

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#58 [url]

Aug 20 10 4:40 AM


Yes, I did omit that part of the technique. It does work better with something like the old oil or thinner-based Humbrol or Testor's enamel. The enamel mixed with the talc seems to dry to a harder finish. It will work with water-based paints, but seems "softer" and not as well-defined.

Bill Sir William the Aged

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#60 [url]

Aug 21 10 6:12 PM

Greetings, Diadochoi!

Thanks for the link - very encouraging news as well as other useful info there from the Koenig Krieg guys.

Bill, thanks again for that final detail.

Cheers, Rohan.

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