Saturday, December 27, 2008

New Clothes For Old Veterans

Hinchcliffe SYW Austrian cuirassiers in rather sorry condition. Eeepppp!!!!

I acquired twenty of the old Hinchcliffe Austrian SYW cuirassiers at a flea market (that's a Bring and Buy for those of you in the UK) about five or six years ago, with the intention of touching them up with paint and improving their appearance. As you can see in the picture above, the paint job is not up to standard and the figures needed a lot of work. When I bought them, I thought that maybe I could repaint the faces and leave them at that.

But you know how that usually turns out, right? First I touched up the faces, then the black equipment, then the shabraques, and so on and so forth. Before I knew it, I had repainted everything except the horse color on the figure. A side by side comparison of the "before" and "after" figures is shown below.

Side by side comparison of my repaint (left) and the original (right)

I tried to keep the original horse painting intact, although in the figure above, I repainted the white blaze on the horse's nose and painted all the tack equipment black. This brought the horse up to an average "wargaming standard". The trooper and shabraque has been completely repainted in this example.

After examing the rest of the regiment, I decided that the horses were so bad that I had do a total repaint. And so what started out as merely "touching up the figure" turned into a total repaint of the horse and figure. So basically, the figures amounted to nothing more than a "primed" figure. I had to completely cover the horse and rider with black acrylic paint and start all over. I worked on these over the weekend and have the troopers done, but the horses need to be painted. I will post a picture of the first dozen riders within the next couple of days.

I like the Hinchcliffe cavalry figures, the riders more so than the horses, but they look nice in an Old School sort of way. Besides, I was getting tired of painting the nicer Crusader Austrians after recently bringing the regiment up to 60 figures. So going forward, I will have one 60-figure cuirassier regiment of Crusader figures, and one 36-figure Hinchcliffe regiment in my army. Eventually I plan to add another Crusader Austrian cuirassier regiment. But for now, I sort of like the variety and the challenge of painting different figures.


  1. You do nice work, I say to heck with it and dunk the whole lot in oven cleaner and start from scratch.

  2. Very nice salvaging work. I take the opposite tack from the Prinz, however. I say leave them be... maybe the enemy will have a hard time staying on their horses while laughing so hard at the untouched Hinchcliffe figures.

  3. Every army has one unit that just can't get it together no matter what. These could be your hard-luck troopers.

  4. I find that my 'hard luck' unit is always the one with the best paint job. Excellent work as always Jim.

  5. They sure looked like "veterans" befor you painted them! *Nice* job on the re-paint though.. :o)

  6. There used to be a time when - in the UK at least - the wargames mass market was divided between Minifigs and Hinchliffe. I was always a Hinchliffe follower, not liking the Minifigs chunky style.

    I'd be very interested to see how the repainted Hinchliffes will compare, as a unit, in a side-by-side comparison with a regiment of more modern figures.

  7. Pooor boys they look the worst for wear - they deserve a complete repaint.

    The Hinchcliffe figs are rather nice and I have some in my imagi-nation armies.

    -- Allan

  8. Jim, there will be Minden Austrian Curassiers available in January :-)

  9. Frank: do not fear. I have some BIG plans my use of Minden figures in 2009. Thanks for the heads up on the Minden Austrian cuirassiers. Hmm, I smell an order coming up.

  10. Morning Jim,

    excellent rehab work on those Hinchliffe cuirassiers!

    Best Regards,


  11. Gadzooks! 800 figures a year! wish I had that kind of production. In terms of the Hinchliffe, I had my own repaint lately, but a small one in comparison. I started with Hinchliffe figures, and still feel that with a nice paint job they can be quite good figures. Obviously not up to current standards for detail, but still quite nice. Here's my repaint:

    Wish I had thought to take some before pictures though.