It’s taken a while to finish this project, a mid-19th century Austrian army! Final unit to be painted was a supply wagon (featured in passing in the last post), although there’s probably an argument that says it should have been one of the first units painted.
The horse and cart is an Irregular Miniatures model and the supply guy is from the plastic Waterloo 1815 Austrian Artillery set. Not being quite sure of the yellow to use for Austrian guns or transport, I’ve used Vallejo golden brown, which I think looks bright enough without being too gaudy! Also shown is a gun limber and gun, the former by Newline Design and the latter from the Waterloo 1815 Austrian Artillery set. The Newline limber is from their American Civil War range, with the driver having a plastic disc stuck on to his kepi to make it look more like an Austrian shako! Newline sell their horse teams as separate items, which is handy for us lazy people who are happy enough to have two horses representing a team! Cottage is a model railway kit by Faller I think, while the log pile and fence round the cottage are resin items by Sergeant’s Mess.
OK, now for the story behind it all! Last year I sort of finished a project that I’ve always wanted to do, the Franco-Prussian War. “Sort of finished” means I got the Prussians done and had enough French pinched from WW1 and Colonial armies to provide opposition! I’d always thought that having got FPW armies, I could then just add an Austrian army to also wargame the 1859 Second War Of Italian Independence and the 1866 Seven Weeks’ War! The fact that the Austrians decided to wear their coats over their white jackets in 1866 was not going to stop me!
It so happened that July 3rd 2016 was the 150th anniversary of the Battle Of Koniggratz, the deciding battle of the Seven Weeks’ War. So in October 2015 I set myself the goal of getting an Austrian army painted so that I could do a 150th anniversary wargame – I reckoned it’d be a tight schedule but do-able!
I was right, and finished all but a handful of the 90-odd figures in time to start the game on July 3rd (the supply cart being one of the unfinished items)! I did try a wash technique with the Austrians, but the combination of plastic figures with shallow details and white uniforms meant I had to paint them properly for a change (or as near to “properly” as I could manage). Played the game with one of my long time wargames opponents but also asked some of my work colleagues if they’d like to participate by assigning characteristics to the commanders and units in the game! They all took this on board so I ended up taking photos of the game and writing a lengthy game report that seemed to take as long as it did to paint the Austrians!
The big difference between the real battle and the wargame was that the Austrians won the latter!