Monday, May 30, 2011

New WIP - Spanish Infanteria Ligera, French Command and dragoon

I missed out on the last game of our long-delayed Iberian Campaign played last Saturday due to sick kids and working wife, but after sending General Hill and a force made up of mainly KGL infantry and cavalry around the southern flank, across the Tagus and into the French rear, while my main force that had received the spanking in the first battle maintained its position, my deputies (Quinny and Andrew B) apparently put in a sterling performance and drove Tim and Robin away from Toledo. Huzzah! 

I'll be getting an AAR with photos, so stay tuned! I'll have to work out what to do next depending on the severity of Tim's defeat, but I know that the other French players are advancing from the north and south, so I may have to scoot to avoid encirclement.

Anyway, I put my enforced inactivity to good use over the last week. I've made headway on my command stand using the ADC figure from the last posting, as well as an eagle-bearer dragoon figure and a couple of units of Spanish light infantry. 

The HaT Spanish Guerrilla kit includes figures that can conceivably be painted as any line unit, but one set of figures is clad in a unique uniform that can only be the one regiment; the Infantería Ligera de los Voluntarios del Reino de Valencia (volunteer light infantry of the kingdom of Valencia). Probably unique in that it was a non-Scottish Highland regiment which wore kilts! Above the waist, they wore fairly standard early 19th c uniform of shako with plume and cords, blue tunic with collar and cuffs in the facing colour of red (with the exception of a unique cross-hatched shoulder decoration in lieu of epaulets)and the usual Spanish paraphernalia like backpack, and belly cartridge belt/box. Below the waist, they wore the white kilt and leggings with espadrilles, in the local style. As to where they were deployed and which army the belonged to and their campaign history, I have no idea! If anyone out there can shed some light on this I'd be grateful. The ever helpful Rafa Pardo has kindly given me some images of Spanish uniforms, one of which you can see below, but the text is in Spanish and seems to be limited to only describing the uniform. Anyway, they're the perfect unit to add little colour to my weekend games!

I've also launched a mass head swap using tarleton heads from the HaT British rocket troop set to replace the topper wearing heads of the Spanish line troops from the same set to create another unit of Spanish light troops. There's a great book in the collection at work,  Armies of the Napoleonic Wars: An illustrated history by Chris McNab , which has a great chapter on Spanish uniforms including the tarleton wearing chaps I'm trying to replicate, but do you think I can find it? No! Bloody students; shouldn't be allowed to use books on my pet topic! I'll have to wait until it surfaces to find a picture to base this lot on.

Also included below are the command stand I've been working on including the ADC from the previous posting and a general and light infantryman as horse-holder. I held the last figure under hot water and manipulated his arm so that stayed bent once it cooled to look like he's holding the reins. I also chopped up a spare artillery wheel to add a little atmosphere to the diorama.

The last is the eagle bearing dragoon figure that I converted using a length of wire, a spare eagle from the Italeri infantry set and a tiny blob of Miliput to construct a thumb to make it look like he's actually gripping the staff. The original figure was holding a musket, which I chopped away, but after gluing the staff, I didn't like the way the staff looked stuck to his hand, so with the tiniest amount of Miliput and a lot of patience, I sculpted his thumb and palm. I'm quite proud of the result!

The first 4 Valencian light infantrymen

Illustration from 'Uniformes Españoles de la Guerra de Independencia' by José Maria Bueno Carrera, Aldaba Militaria (1989) as provided by Rafael Pardo.

Advancing figure

Firing figure. Note the espadrilles!
Tarleton wearing Infanteria Ligera conversion
Command figures and decoration added to prepared base

Flocked and varnished

Eagle bearer dragoon conversion with added thumb!


  1. Great work Rosbif , as always !!

  2. Very nice, I have just started to paint some WWII figures, and I am amazed at how small they are, I am quite amazed at the detail level you have painted on these little Napoleonics.


  3. Just starting to follow your blog. I've been a 20mm for along time, now switching to 28mm (my eyes are really grateful for that!) and I'm quite impressed by the level of detail you achieve in your minis

  4. Looking very well old sport - I was pondering the chaps in the kilts the other day. I'd field them, God knows I need to bulk up my Spanish forces and sharpish, but do you have any idea what their officers, NCOs and musicians looked like?

    By the way, what strength are your infantry units? I have some spares that may be of use.

  5. Spanish in kilts???? It's not 1st of April again is it?? But they do look good.

  6. Thanks for the positive comments, fellas!

    Welcome aboard, Anibal.

    Conrad, I generally just swap heads using the body of a French officer with a head from one of the sodiers and paint him using the general colours and facings of the unit. I don't bother with drummers/musicians with these units. In our rules, the scale is 1:60 ie 1 figure represents 60 men, so our battalions are between 8-12 figures, generally, though the Austrian units can be anywhere up to 15-18 figures! If you have any of the topper-wearing figures, I could always use some more, but I'm not sure it'd be worth the international postage costs :P!

  7. Hello monsieur,
    first of all, those troops are not wearing kilts but saragüells, which are short, very ample pants typical from Valencia and southernmost Catalonia (that's why they seem a kilt at first sight, just like hakama seem skirts). Second, i have only seen a reference about the unit being deployed at the battle of Alcañiz, although they must possibly were also involved in the battle of Sagunto.Hope this helps.

    PS: and yes, i'm a Valencia native

    1. Thanks for that info Y.O. Very informative!


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