So what rules to use? After much discussion and a few knock-down-drag-out friendly conversations, we decided on Warfare in the Age of Reason. (Maurice and Koenig Krieg were considered, and I'm sure most of you, my gracious readers, have your own favourites, but we've got to start somewhere.) Next, maps. Since Martin is a graduate student studying economic geography, we'll leave that to him who is an expert-in-training. Next, Figures. ("Dig in, boys; it's going to be a long war." he says to himself.) Andy and I have extensive 15mm collections for the 7 Years War. Andy has a large collection of 25mm figs for the French and Indian War in North America. But it's an "Imigi-nations" campaign and we want to paint up the figures as we please, not impress Prussians, Russians, or Swedes as troops of our postage stamp empires! Some new figures are being released... but not for SYW and they are not cheap.
What to do? I spelunk into my old documents and find something I never considered. 20mm figures for the SYW and the AWI (American War of Independence) by Frying Pan & Blanket Amalgamated of Minnesota. They've been around for a long time, but do they still exist? What do the figures look like? They have no Web-presence (e-mail address or website) so how do we contact them? There is a fan-run website that has a few photos and list the all the ranges FP&B produce [http://fryingpan.freewebtools.com/] but even he says all correspondence is by surface mail... y'know, with stamp and envelope. HOWEVER, their figures are boxed 24 infantry (including 2 officers, 2 colour bearers, and 2 musicians) or 6 cavalry (6 horses, 6 riders, and 6 dismounted cavalrymen or 6 command - like the infantry with no dismounted). There are some variations for light troops and such. Artillery is boxed 4 crews of 6 and the range of ordnance is extensive. Best of all the figures are white metal of the usual sort and cost... wait for it... $9.95 US a box! Are you kidding me? $.41 a figure for metal? So I ordered a sample. A while later (I think they mould to order, so there's little stock on hand), a package arrived. The folks at FP&B were most gracious and friendly and acually called me to say when they were shipping. This might be out of the ordinary, but it was great to have them do that.
So I painted and here's what some of the troops look like: (the good photos are courtesy of my wife, the scummy ones are mine.)
|To give you an idea of the size, here you can see me adjusting the ensign of the cavalry unit |
(Box #151 - 18th Century Horse command)
|British line infantry in overalls for Rob's British North America-style army|
(Box #161 British line infantry, marching, hide pack, overalls)
|A rear view of the British. The officer is carrying a musket, so it's a late war figure.|
|Prussian-style German infantry - Hessians, I suppose. Very good for SYW Prussians|
(Box #112 German Line Infantry, tricorns, marching)
|The command stand close up. Age of Reason calls for 12 figure battalions, so a box from FP&B|
gives you two battalions for less than $10!
|Germans showing the detail on the backs - knapsack packs for the rank and file, aguilette for the officer,|
"Swallow's nests" for the drummer.
|Box #107 Continental Line Infantry, Tricorns, uniforms, marching painted up as a Pennsylvania battalion|
in "Quaker Brown." They'll serve in Rob's army.
|The command - the flags are moulded in a draped position which makes them a bit hinky for painting.|
|Box #103 Highland line infantry, bonnets, kilts, defending|
This the first unit for Beth's Scot's style army. She wanted green coats with a MacGregor tartan.
I did my best.
|Back view of the Scots. They are behaving themselves. No "Braveheart" kilt flipping today.|
|A second Scots outfit - Green with lighter green facings AND a regimental mascot!|
|A close-up of the officer, ensign, and MacTavish. The unit includes drummers, no pipers|
|A close up of the back of the 2nd Scots unit.|
|Native Warriors (Box #132 - Woodland Indians - 7 poses)|
Rob intends to make these his light infantry. I've added a few figures from the dismounted batch of
Box # 509 - Plains Indians Mounted from the Pony Wars range.
|... with warpaint...|
|... and head dress (From Box 509)...|
|... shirts and leggings.|
|A tribute to a reenacting friend - Aaron immortalised in pewter.|
|From Boxes #150 & 151 - 18th Century Horse and Command - painted as a dragoon regiment.|
The Fredonian Dragoons are renowned for... something or other, I can't remember, but
|The dragoons pass in review!|
|Ensign and trumpeter of the dragoons. I'm rather pleased with the results.|
|The trumpeter close up. I decided to use reversed colours - red coat with medium blue facings- for the |
regimental musicians. I want to do a regiment each of heavy horse and hussars, but the reversed colours
may not hold for them.
|From Box #509 - Plains Indians, mounted.|
Rob says he wants to use these as his light cavalry. I'm gong to stick to hussars.
|From Box #106 - His Grace, the Grand Elector of Saxe-Fredonia, Rufus I Glühwürmchen|
|A close up of His Grace. I've GOT to remember to paint that mustache! |
Not the most detailed figure ever, to be honest, but it has character.