And in the End…

NEW OLD TOY SOLDIER 54mm REPLICAMETAL MODEL SOLDIERS ANDREW

The games you play are equal to the games you make…

I could not resist it, saying farewell and knowing when to quit is very difficult. I am waiting for my last parcels from Mersey Wargames, Keep Wargaming and Reveille. In the meantime I have painted a “new old toy soldier”… a 54mm (ReplicaMetalSoldiers Andrew) a mounted Inspector General of the NWMP in a dark blue patrol jacket just because a childhood memory -they are the best (childhood memories not the NWMP)- I was very young when I got a box of mounties (I already had a lot of them) but in that one proudly in front of the lot there he was… a mountie with a dark blue tunic -and yellow gauntlets!- of course it was the commander of the unit!… I always had a crush for that figure (and of course never found one alike)… so in the end I decided to make my own and quite satisfied I am going full circle. Of course the original one was lost forever, but I have still 3 mounties over 65 years old see pic.

Hereby you can see one of them, top center mounted. The chap on the bike is also from that period (early fifties),

I am going to update this post with pics and slowly edit the rest, meaning that I think there is always room for improvement.

Slightly smaller than DUCAL but exactly as BRITAINS or DORSET SOLDIERS.
The DUCAL RCMP set (waiting for its new commander….)
There he is on its proper place before saluting the flag of the parading mounties.

One last thing, I reviewed in amazon.co.uk the book “The History of Toy Soldiers” not that it matters a lot, but what a lavish book!… I did found info in subjects that does not interest me at all but were a pleasure to know. I will leave you with it. Oh! in fact four stars was the final qualification for the “holes” in it, its a book that starts thoroughly and than has a rushed end… I would not have collected or bought more than 50% of what it is showed in it… paper soldiers?… flats?… nutcrackers? No Playmobil or Lego and no mention of Baccus minis either which is a heavy mistake!… No silver soldiers as per Regimental mess pieces as in Mappin&Webb, and no china (porcelain) big soldiers (I have one)… and still recommended somehow… to learn from where we are coming from. I absolutely recommend, as James Opie works, Stuart Asquith and the rest which in my opinion are more concrete and well structured if a bit “insular”. A missed opportunity in more than a certain way, but worth having.

It was a pleasure comparting posts here… and sure I will post more pics!… and edit existing posts but that’s all. To elaborate would be just copy paste of what I said in my book “My Toy Soldiers and Me” so just peruse sometimes to see editions to come (of the posts of the blog not my book!).

Playmobil “mounties”… customized… and of course the dark blue patrol tunic is there too! Not very good light on that pic. See OSPREY MAA.

I was actually a bit nonplussed by the book The History of Toy Soldiers, an excellent coffee table book and lavish edition to be sure… but with so many blatant omissions in my opinion… the concept of “Toy Soldier” is for me much more ample and inclusive!… and I really disagree with the author about the Terra cotta Chinese Army dig out from the Big Wallah back garden!… they are simply 1/1 scale and that’s that.

Editing this blog would be much more interesting that writing new entries, just yesterday I got one half of my last REVEILLE Leven buildings (Daniel Hodgson is the chap you need for your scenery!), vaguely colonial they would be pressed into service at the battle of Maiwand, NWF and North of Africa indistinctly.

Renaming and ordering the Posts of the Blog by subjects and categories nowadays.

Original pic of my DUCAL mounties in the garden (Pal in ANDORRA) not Canada at all I am afraid.

Summing up, my interests on “toy soldiers” are wide and large. I do not restrict my activities to a single field or even scale, neither period. No original at all, as you can imagine there is nothing more conservative than the Household Division to collect in 54mm, and the rest of my 54’s are in three main themes: French Foreign Legion (with some Chasseurs d’Afrique); Tel el Kebir/Rorke’s Drift aka Brits colonials before khaki; and last but not least NWMP/RCMP. As you can see in Collecting I the minis collected in 54mm have been subject to buy/sell, Scot Grey’s cometh and goeth, same with US Cavalry in gala uniform, Denmark Royal Guard, Mossos d’Esquadra (Catalan Police) and other mat finish Spanish miniatures which included US Marines USMC but also British Rotal Marines and Spain’s Division Azul, as I said before only two of the eleven shelves were kept… that is Collecting for me, something alive but with periods of lethargy. Not Original at all I am afraid but a rewarding pastime.

I dedicated a chapter of my book to Collecting (my own experience mind) but the book you need is the one by James Opie: Collecting Toy Soldiers. He has written many excellent books about Britain’s but THIS ONE is the best of all his production IMHO.

Cheers.

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ACW (VIII)

I said it and here it is, in ACW (III) I told you about them (lets copy paste):

“It has not rested a lot!… just today I ordered more Infantry from Mersey Wargames for 1st Bull Run/1st Manassas. Brigades with colours inverted … blue one’s with Reb Colours and grey one’s with Union Colours… to add to the confusion of the first battle!… Have to write a Post about Disorders or Megalomania too!… thought I was cured!…”

Well, here they are after the POSCA treatment, Greg provided them with dark blue kepis and grey kepis, so far so good. But after reflecting a bit and perusing the HEIMDAL book I decided to change the colors of the headgear because there were units like that -obscure militia maybe but they existed- So that gave me a sort of “twin” units or “mirror” stands, now I have Blue clad Confederates with red kepis and sky blue kepis, and Grey clad Union stands with red kepis and sky blue kepis… as you can see in the pic. I thought that this permitted more flexibility and the stands are going to be used not only in First Bull Run (First Manassas) but also later on in the big battles of 1862 and even 1863… after all the flags are all important in 6mm scale.

One of the books to have about uniforms… in fact it aglutinates the two previous volumes by the same authors.

Excellent information and computer generated images. I think that the two ancient volumes by Histoire&Collections had English text editions. Not sure about the HEIMDAL book though -probably in the offing- The out of print H&C are very pricey lately.

BTW I need REVEILLE to do some entrenchments for 1864 (not my favourite wargaming year I guess… but interesting nevertheless).

Lets compare with the pic of arrival of the parcel:

There in the background you can see the original painting scheme, plain blue and grey kepis!

There you can see how easy it is to “customize” a bit, and it is really fast I assure you.

As you can notice from this series of ACW I have increased the number of “Brigades” and currently waiting for Greg to finish (if he has started them) the special stands I “designed” to add variety on the Tabletop.

That would do for today.

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XIXth Corps d’Afrique

The final shape of the Spahis (thanks again to Igor!)

I did start with two Regiments of the French Foreign Legion -how not- afterwards come a Regiment of Chasseurs d’Afrique (Cavalry)… but was at a loss on how to get the Spahis until Igor suggested an obscure pack of WWI Irregular Arab Cavalry!… well, I ordered, organized and modified a bit!, sent to the painters (MERSEY WARGAMES aka Greg), and at the same time asked for Zouaves (European troops) and Turcos (Native troops).

The parcel arrived today. See pic. -There are also some ACW stands that would be the subject of another post).

I did remake the officers of Spahis with POSKA markers -they deliver paint- and added white lines to the burnous and a black line on the headgear. Not much to do with Turcos and Zouaves… slight retouching and adding flags.

I guess the pics are quite self explanatory. There are some special measure stands for skirmishers, rallying squares for both Turcos and Zouaves… and the rest are ACW.

Contents of Parcel on arrival.
Units finished with French Flags (Napoleonic of course).

Thought it would be interesting for other colonial wargamers of the late XIXth Century in North Africa. In other posts I have showed the FFL and the Chasseurs d’Afrique. See below.

The rest of the French Colonial force.

That concludes my French Colonial Army.

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Collecting Toy Soldiers II

My most recent purchase. ReplicaMetalSoldiersAndrew 54mm Chasseurs d’Afrique.

Not that it is very easy this days to find what you need or want, so the core of this post is just to praise the excellent comms and service provided by Replica Metal Soldiers Andrew.

Here they are its proper place with its officer and in reserve. Changed the colors of some pom-poms.

He is a one man band and has a full daytime job and of course a family… so do not expect him to be FAST! (not shouting it is just emphasis)… but oh boy!… well worth the wait.

For those asking themselves about the officer I already had that one. They mix very well with the scale of Britain’s (of course) and particularly ok with Dorset Soldiers which since Giles sold and retired has not very good communications, I tried to buy from them and only got sorry excuses until I dropped the matter. Hope they got their bearings afresh.

This is a part of my hobby I do not indulge a lot anymore due to lack of space in the cabinets… but I manage to squeeze in something now and then.

Got 6mm Baccus Chasseurs d’Afrique and Spahis -thanks to Igor who suggested the proxies for the later- still searching for 4 toy soldiers in 54mm Spahis to complete my set.

That finish my Collection! (If I did not know better…) But at least it is an actualized pic, compare if a fan of 54mm those in Collecting I and Collecting II posts).


The final Collection of The Household Division in 54mm + some extras.

The five foot Regiments Top to bottom: Grenadiers, Coldstreamers, Scots, Irish and Welsh Guardsmen.
Door closed.
The other cabinet. Also closed and ended…