Friday, September 11, 2015

1° Reggimento Fanteria Leggera - 1st Regiment of Light Infantry


Another battalion of my slowly growing Neapolitan project has been completed! This time it's the first of the light infantry regiments, namely the 1st battalion of the 1st regiment of light infantry. 

This regiment took a bit of planning to assemble, as there aren't that many figures in this scale which suit the requirements. First of all they had to be uniformed in the Bardin cut uniform; full plastron and short tailed coats. Secondly, only the elites should have epaulettes, but the chasseurs still needed crossbelts and sabre briquet/bayonet frogs. Only HaT produce a late uniformed light infantry set, but some of the sculpting, especially of the heads and shakos leave a bit to be desired. Still, I needed them for the elites, so I ordered a box. 

The chasseurs posed a problem still. I considered using the HaT figures and trying to shave the epaulettes off, but decided it would be too messy and the results not what I was after. I also have a truck-load of Esci French infantry, which, while very well produced, have a whole lot of inaccuracies as well as some rather odd poses. After examining them closely I decided that with a few adjustments they could fit the bill as chasseurs; 
  1. they have short-tailed coats, even though their fronts are in the pre-Bardin style,
  2. they all have double cross-belts, even though half of them don't have anything attached to the second belt,
  3. they don't have epaulettes, even those which seem to be elites i.e., the ones which do have the attached sabre briquet/bayonet frog.
What I was aiming for
Courtesy of via

The problems were remedied by converting the chosen figures. Painting conversions allowed me to suggest Bardin style uniforms on the front of these figures, while those without sabres were easily converted by gluing on sabres which had been carefully shaved off surplus figures. Strange poses were rectified by twisting the heads of some figures into more anatomically realistic positions, and a couple of figures without backpacks received surplus Schilling metal backpacks. A couple of the HaT figures received head conversions to replace the awful originals, or to provide a little variety in having the same posed figure used in the group.

Another problem presented by the Esci figures is the long, over-the-knee gaiters that they all wear. They'd gone out of use in the Revolutionary era, so on these figures it's completely anachronistic. I fixed that, though with a simple painting conversion, ending the gaiters below the knee. You can only really notice the original design if you look closely, but on the table you'll never notice it.

HaT NCO has head conversion, using a head from a surplus Esci figure.

Chasseur 2nd from left is another HaT figure with Esci head.

Firing figure has Schilling backpack

Middle figure also has Schilling backpack, and right hand HaT figure has a Franznap head.

HaT elites painted as voltiguers


  1. Lovely work but when I used to play Napoleonic with the rejects, you were given the neapolitans as a punishment!

    1. I'm sure playing Neapolitan will be a challenge, to put it mildly!

  2. Really nice painting. Love the hatless dude - seldom seen that before.

  3. Super painting Ben! Yet more colourful units in a colourful army.
    Being more lax with my interpretations, I merely used Zvezda French lights, of which I have a surplus, for these, with the élite bits cut off and waistcoats painted over. They look excellent done with these Hat figures though which, while a bit 'wooden' unpainted, paint up nicely, as you have demonstrated so well.
    It must almost be time for Murat to conduct a review?!!

  4. These look superb Ben and I'm always impressed at just how much extra work you put into your regiments to make them as accurate as possible.

  5. Great painted unit!



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