The Military Army Blog

Der Alte Fritz Journal: Ostgotland Kavalrie Regiment

I completed the first 10 of the 18 figures that will comprise my first GNW Swedish cavalry unit, the Ostgotland Kavalrie Regiment in service in the King’s Army at Poltava. The figures are from the Warfare Miniatures Great Northern War range of 28mm figures. The Swedish army had regiments of Kavalrie and regiments of Dragoons. Following normal European conventions of the times, I take that to mean that the Kavalrie are considered to be heavier battlefield horse whereas the Dragoons are one notch lower on the quality ladder. The uniforms of both appear to be exactly the same. My GNW Swedish cavalry (generic term cavalry, to indicate anyone on a horse) will be organized into three squadrons of 12 figures for a regimental total of 36 figures. At a 1:20 figure to man ratio, that yields a field strength of 720 riders. The established or paper strength of the cavalry regiments were around 1,000 but I figure that attrition would result in a lower number of riders on campaign. My brief understanding of Swedish cavalry tactics is that the Swedes loved to charge and they did it in some sort of a wedge shaped formation. I have to do some experimenting with basing to come up with a basing format that I like. For the time being, though, I am using a 60mm wide by 80mm deep base, same as the infantry stands, for the cavalry. I could turn the bases onto the long edge so that the 80mm side is the frontage of the unit. I haven’t decide on this yet. One advantage of the 60mm frontage is that cavalry units would have the same stand frontage as the infantry units. Note to Dannie Fogleman: what size bases are you using for your Beneath the Lily Banner rules?

After working on two Warfare Swedish infantry units, I have a better understanding of how to assemble the figures and get them into the priming booth quickly. The cavalry figures require gluing on the right arm and the sword scabbard as well as the usual attachment of the rider to the horse. I use a little bit of green epoxy putty for the assembly, placing a small dab of putty into the socket holes that the figures provide for the arm and scabbard attachments. These are nicely deep so that you can easily locate the part into the hole. The putty creates a stronger bond and I recommend combining green putty with super glue for the assembly. I then use white Elmer’s Glue to attach the figures to temporary cardboard bases and then prime them with grey primer. I seem to have moved away from the black primer system, just because, well just because. The painting of the figures is relatively easy. They are not loaded down with equipment so there are fewer things to paint. For whatever reason though, the Warfare figures seem to paint rather quickly and are fun to paint. It appears that the range does not yet have dedicated command figures for the cavalry (officers, standard bearers, and musicians) so these are provided by other generic figures wearing tricorn hats. The officers and standard bearer wear a cuirasse plate under the coat and have a large sash around the waist. I don’t believe that the Swedish army used cloth waist sashes during the GNW so you kind of have to live with this error. The sashes can not be carved off of the figure, and in any event, it would be too much work and not worth the payback in time. Thus, I elected to paint the sashes yellow since this seems to be a predominate color in the Swedish Army of the GNW. The figures look fine even with the sashes. I assume that at some point in the near future, the Warfare sculptor, “Clibinarium” will add the command figures to the Swedish army. I will also need an infantry brigade commander and I think that the one depicted two pictures above (see wedge formation pix) on the round stand will work just fine as a general officers for my Swedes. Again, I expect that the range will add the extra command figures in the near future. Warfare will be releasing the first of its Russian GNW infantry by the end of September or early October 2015, so I am looking forward to giving some of my Reaper Paints “Elven Green” paint a workout. Finally, I just really like the animation that the Warfare Miniatures cavalry figures have and that is one of the things that attracted me to both the period and the figure range.

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