Saturday, February 27, 2010

The Bayreuth Dragoons Are Coming

Last night I cleaned and primed a dozen Minden Prussian dragoons so that I could start painting them over the weekend. I have decided to paint them as the DR5 Bayreuth Dragoon Regiment, which is probably one of the most famous Prussian cavalry regiments, due to their celebrated charge at Hohenfriedberg in 1745. At that battle, they swept away the whole center of the Austrian infantry battle line and put the exclamation point on a resounding Prussian victory.

I can only hope that my own version of the Bayreuth Dragoons will perform as well.

While I was waiting for coats of black primer to dry (I spray all four sides of the figure, then when it dries, I tip the cavalry figure over onto its side to spritz the bottom, then after that dries, I reverse the figure and spray the other side of the belly of the beast), I needed something to do between applying coats of primer. It takes about 15 to 20 minutes for the primer to reach the first stage of dryness.

So I began to eyeball the 60 Minden Austrians that have been sitting on my work table for over a year. You've probably seen them, mounted on pennies to increase their height relative to my Potsdam Miniatures and the Staddens - adds a couple of millimeters to the height. Well, since I don't need to increase the height of the Austrians for use in my Minden Project (afterall, all the figures will be Mindens), I felt that I couldn't use this batch of figures... unless.... I could somehow pry them off of the pennies.

So I picked up an Austrian infantryman and gave it a little tap on the table. Low and behold, the penny fell off. Eureka! If one penny could be removed in so easy a manner, then why not all of them. That would give me two 30 figure battalions of Austrians to jump start my Austrian army (albeit, they need to be painted) and save me a little bit of money that I could reinvest into more Minden Austrians. So while the primer was drying out in the garage, I was prying figures off of pennies, and by the end of the evening, I had all of the Austrians removed from their penny bases. So now they will go into my Minden Project as well.

They won't get painted anytime soon, however, because I want to paint the Prussian dragoons first, and then finish off the second battalion of IR5 Alt Braunschweig. That should be enough work to keep me busy for the whole month of March. In April, I have to paint 24 British Dragoon Guards (Elite Miniatures) to use in our Fontenoy game at Little Wars on April 24-25, 2010. So the Austrian Mindens may not see paint until May, but now I have the figures and I can put them into the painting que.
Update (Saturday afternoon)

I have finished the first sample figure this afternoon and it really looks sweet! I always paint one figure complete, from start to finish, whenever I tackle a new unit or new figures. This gives me 3-D template or uniform guide to use for the rest of the regiment. It also allows me to experiment with the paint and find the right color combinations and to figure out the most efficient order for painting the various parts and bits of equipment on the figure. When I am done with the sample, I get an index card and write down the paint formulas that are used on each piece of equipment: coat, breeches, facings, shabraque, gloves, etc. This way, I won't forget which paints I used a week or two down the road.


  1. Arrrgh come on then, show us the piccie of the finished sample dragoon !!!!!! What a tease, sheesh!

  2. Glad you were able to de-penny your Minden Austrians with a minimum of effort.


  3. I'm looking forward to seeing this.
    I'm an American,but I live in Germany and Bayreuth is around 20 minutes away from where I live.;-)