Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Starting the Minden Project

Minden Prussians (IR34 Prinz Ferdinand) that eventually went into my BAR army as a 60-figure battalion. This gives you somewhat of an idea what the smaller 30 figure battalion will look like, except that the figures will be deployed in 2-ranks instead of 3-ranks. These were painted back in 2008.

I started working on my "Minden Project" for 2010 this evening with the cleaning of the figures with rubbing alcohol and the gluing of the figures onto temporary cardboard bases for the priming and painting process. I did the same with a dozen Prussian artillery crewmen. Tomorrow night I will prime the figures with black primer and tuck into them over this coming weekend.

So what exactly is the Minden Project, you might ask. It will consist of two armies: Prussian and Austrian scaled at a 1 to 20 ratio of figures to men. This means that my battalions of infantry and my cavalry regiments will have 30 figures. These figures will not be used for BAR rules/games, but rather, will give me a core set of 12 battalions and 4 cavalry regiments per side that I can use for either solo wargaming at home, or for smaller convention games on the road. I think that participation players want to get in a game that will be over in 3 or 4 hours, so it is my intent to keep the armies on the small side. Furthermore, I already have SYW armies at 1:10 (more than I can possibly use at any one time) and 1:30, so why not fill in the gap with 1:20?

Given my painting production, it should be relatively easy to build up the armies as 12 of these units are the equivalent of 6 BAR sized 60 figure battalions, and I know that I can easily paint 60 figures, or two battalions worth in a month. Maybe 3 or 4 units in a month if I'm really pushing the production into overdrive.

Organizationally, the figures will be based in a conventional 2 ranks with 6 figures per stand and five stands, for a total of 30 infantry figures. I have decided to paint both battalions of a Prussian regiment (60 figures per regiment) and also paint a separate mounted colonel for the regiment. Each stand will have about a 3/4-inch frontage per figure or close to 60mm wide. Georgo Bases happens to make a 60 by 40 stand from MDF wood and these will have a nice finished look to them. The first battalion will have the liebfahnen and the regimentfahnen while the second battalion will have the two colored regimental flags. All flags will be GMB Designs, as these are simply the best flags on the market.

The Prussian army will consist of the following items:

IR1 Winterfeldt - 2 btns
IR23 Forcade - 2 btns

IR13 Itzenplitz - 2 btns
IR19 Markgraf Karl - 2btns

1/23 Wedell Grenadier btn
IR6 Grenadier Garde btn
IR15/III Lieb Garde Grenadier btn
Jager Battalion

Each brigade of 4 musketeer battalions will have two Berlin Zinnfiguren 12-pounders with complete limber teams and either RSM or Front Rank horses pulling the limbers. The grenadier/Garde brigade will have a pair of 7-pound howitzers.

The cavalry contingent will consist of the following:

CR1 Krockow Cuirassiers (30 figures)
CR8 Seydlitz Cuirassiers (30 figures)
DR4 Czettritz Dragoons (30 figures)
HR1 Szekeley Hussars (30 figures)

Minden already produces the Prussian cuirassiers and Frank Hammond has just announced that he has received the greens for the Prussian dragoons. I have a lot of painting ahead of me so I am not too worried about the availability of hussars just yet. I could always add another dragoon regiment or switch over to the Austrians for awhile. One possibility is to paint the dragoons in white coats for the War of Austrian Succession period. That would be a different look for my Prussian dragoons. It might also give me a reason to one day paint some of the Eureka Saxons that I bought and fight Hohenfriedberg and Kesselsdorf in 1745.

As usual, the Austrians get the short end of the stick -- I have not given much thought to what I would have in my Austrian army, but needless to say, its composition shall be similar to that of the Prussians. I received a shipment of Minden Croats this week and I am really keen to paint them too. I will probably build up a core of 4 to 6 Prussian battalions and then switch over to the Austrians for awhile. Now I rather wish that I didn't have 60 Minden Austrian infantry super glued onto US pennies for my BAR army. Maybe the old "stick them in the freezer" trick will work and I can pry them off of the pennies and paint them for my Minden Project army. Or I could just order more Austrians.

So that summarizes my Minden Project to some degree. I will start on the first two battalions over the Christmas holiday and hopefully will have the first regiment of Winterfeldt painted and based for all to see.


  1. Ah, finally. I am relieved that you have "seen the light" and are returning to the mid-Eighteenth century again . . . (I say a pox on those Nappies).

    I like the idea of painting them as WAS troops and I hope that it grows on you . . . but even if it doesn't, I'm sure that you will enjoy painting those Mindens . . . they are truly lovely figures.

    Have a wonderful holiday season, sir.

    -- Jeff

  2. Had as a Warhammer-Fan 19 days ago a post reg. "minden":

    Kind regards from Germany!


    PS: My hometown is 10 km away from Minden ;)

  3. Good luck with your new project.

    -- Allan

  4. An interesting new project indeed.
    Yet I hope it will leave you some free time for (as a refreshing change?) other projects, such a the 'Alt Hesse-Seewald' army of your design.
    For this last you planned to use 'historical' von Luckner's Hussars; previously for Milady de Winter's mounted escort you envisaged 'historical' Frei Korps hussars in black and white: what about somehow 'combining' the two? To substitute dark green with black on von Luckner's Hussars first uniform would almost amount to the same ad givng red trousers to the 'black & white' ones. The result would be original, yet barely less 'historical' than de Winter's Bosniaks, and certainly no more than WAS Grassins or de Saxe Uhlans in a SYW setting; and would visually be in harmony with the 'Black Legion'....

    Looking eagerly forward to read more about Milady de Winter!

    Btw, how is the Hesse-Seewalder war balloon project progressing?

    Best regards,

  5. Hi Uncle Jim
    Looks like a good progect you have going their, and I saw your posting about those austrians being glued to pennies. Don''t stick the pewter models in the freezer as this will believe it or not make the models more brittle as well. Instead I am assuming you used a zap a gap supper glue on these. If so then easy fix with two choices. The first being get a sculpting took and wedge it between the model and the base thise can help alleaviate the model from the penny. The next choise is a simple debonder will easily do the trick. If you are unsure of doing it all just send it to me and ill do it for you for free!

  6. Good luck w/ your project. I may try "painting along with you" if time permits. You inspire us all as usual.
    Happy Holidays.


  7. Der A., some one has to say it, another 28/30mm Prussian army? You're NUTS!!! But they look great and I hope you enjoy the painting and the games that follow.


  8. Jim,

    Your post has inspired me to order 5 BZ guns and limbers to go with my Mndens. Of the RSM and Front Rank horses, which do you think would be better?

    Have a great Holiday.

  9. I think that the RSM horses are closer in scale to the BZ limbers and guns. You can also use the RSM limber rider or take a dragoon and put some wire in his open hand to simulate a whip. Maybe use the Front Rank horses for the 12 pdrs and wagons. The RSM rider does fit on the Front Rank horse quite nicely.