Monday, June 23, 2008

Austrian Horse Grenadiers

Crusader SYW Austrian Horse Grenadiers - Regt. Saxe-Gotha

Here is a picture of a squadron of Austrian horse grenadiers that I completed a few weeks ago. The figures are from the Crusader range of Seven Years War figures and they are a joy to paint.

The Austrian dragoon regiments all had a company of elites that wore the bearskin mitre, hence the name Horse Grenadiers. In the cuirassier regiments, the elite company was called a carabinier company. The carbiniers did not wear the traditional cavalry boot, but instead wore something that looks like a leather gaitor with buttons running up the side. Presumably, this would allow the carabiniers to dismount and fight or patrol on foot. By the way, nobody makes carabiniers for the Austrian cavalry.

The Austrians had the habit of detaching all of the elite companies from the dragoon and cuirassier regiments and converging them into ad hoc cavalry regiments prior to a battle. They were usually held in a central reserve and used to counteract any Prussian break throughs in the battle line. Thus, in my horse grenadier unit, I have three 12 figure squadrons from three different dragoon regiments - green coats, blue coats and red coats. It makes for a nice looking converged unit.

I believe that the red coated regiment depicted above is the Saxe-Gotha dragoon regiment with red coat and light blue facings. I use the term "believe" because it is one o'clock in the morning and I need to haul off to bed and couldn't remember for sure the exact unit. The red coats are painted with Reaper's "Blood Red" in two coats over black primer. Then the red is highlighted with Ral Partha "Red". The combination does an effective job of covering up the black primer, which is a significant concern when one is painting reds over black.

I was working on another squadron of Austrian Dragoons over the weekend: the green coated, red facing De Ligne Regiment (DR31) who are famous for their charge at Kolin that saved the day for the Austrians. I already have 36 figures in the regiment, but I am adding another 12 figure squadron in time for my Historicon game in several weeks. I kind of hit the painting wall on Saturday, so I switched over to 1805 Russian horse artillery from Elite Miniatures. Russians seem to paint up so much faster for some reason so I find the allure of painting Russians hard to resist these days. I also primed more of the Old Glory 1805 Russians in bicorn that are depicted in yesterday's post.


  1. Great figures, didn't realize the carabiniers didn't wear boots...Bill

  2. Hello Jim,

    As ever, your painting output impresses me to no end. And those red-coated carabiniers are simply stunning. There's just something about red-coated troops. . .

    Best Regards,


  3. Great photo, and a lovely paint job: you set the standards for these in my book.

  4. Lovely figures as usual.

    Hinchliffe (more recently Ellerburn Armies) do an Austrian carabinier. I had some once myself. They are still on the list at the new owners, Hinds Figures.



  5. They pulled the grenedier cav and pooled them?
    Rats, now I'll have to get more Austrian cav, as I've only six of those babies in 15mm ....

  6. Excellent minis and informative post, as usual!
    Thanks! :-)

  7. Jim
    good to see the austrians about and something different - most interesting info too.
    1805 Russians seem to be quite a thing at present - will they be ready to fight the French over the late summer /autumn?

  8. I hope to find some time after Historicon to start playtesting the 1805 rules and play some small scenarios with the available troops.

  9. Excellent unit.Great mind think alike. I have also done a regiment of saxe-Gotha dragoons and a green coated one with Revell figures, both 32 figures strong. I have converted 2 squadrons so far for an amagamated horse grenadier unit. I think there will also be a blue coated squadron and I haven't decided yet on the 4th.

    These have to wait until I have finished my 2 regiments of prussian dragoons (40 figures each). These are well behind schedule due to endless other commitments. I need to crack on.


  10. Jim,

    The figures look lovely, thanks for the sample!