Monday, December 8, 2014

An Update. Finally!

I've left things sit for almost 2 years, so I really should post more pix. Right now I'm trying to do this with a mobile android device, so I'm a little dubious about the success of this endeavour. I may have to wait for the library to open and use their desktop machines (I've been cable tv and home internet free since the New Year. I think tv's pretty lousy and I was only watching the History Channel and the Military Channel and they aren't worth $60 a month. Espescially since History Channel mostly plays crap like Ancient Aliens.)Anyway, here's some pix


Well it's the next day and I'm at the library...

And this post should have been first today...

Oh well, here's a few pictures:

These are some odd projects I've been working on. The first are Italeri Saracen camel mounted warriors. The elephants are knick knacks from the ubiquitous Dollar Store, that I added plasticene howdas, armour and accoutrements to. A handfull of old brittle Airfix figures are along for the ride.
The last grouping are Parthians in 25mm from Warrior miniatures.

Note: This is a repost from a couple years back. I was putting labels on my posts and somehow I changed the date for this one. I couldn't change it back, so instead of deleting it, I figured I'd just repost it. Oh well....

Friday, December 5, 2014

Comic Book Toy Soldiers: 204 Revolutionary War Soldier Set

This is a follow up on the comic book soldier theme I did with the Lucky Romans a while back. This is for the later fully round plastic figures, not the earlier flat figures.

We're all familiar with the comic book ad:

As a kid the "No Canadian or foreign orders accepted!" never stopped me from trying to order, but alas, the letters were always returned.
As an adult I began to find them at flea markets, often for a few dollars. Then with the internet I began buying sets and partial sets from comic book stores.
But ebay was the eye opener. For a while the toys were relatively cheap, but then their prices began to climb rapidly.
Now I occasionally buy a set in the $30 range, but I've seen some auctions realize several hundred dollars a set.

Here are the original contents:

They were:
36 Dragoons (Cavalrymen)

12 Shooting Infantrymen

(Note: I'm not sure what figures were specified by some of the descriptions. There are 3 shooting figures, one standing, one crouching, and one kneeling.)

12 Marching Infantrymen

12 Crouching Infantrymen

12 Fifers

(Note: The figures depicted don't have a small fife in the traditional sense, rather it looks like a horn or oboe of some type.)

12 Charging Infantrymen

(Note: None of the figures are very active and I have no idea which one could be seen as charging.)

12 Sharpshooters

12 Field Cannon

12 Cannon Loaders

12 Drummers

12 Minutemen

(Note: Along with the Hessians, these figures are strictly meant for one side only. In this case, Blue American Militia. However, both the Militiamen and Hessians feature figures in both colours. However, there are relatively few red militia and blue Hessians, at a ratio of 30 to 1 in my collection of 10 or so sets. It could be that these odd coloured troops were mistakes or were added in later sets? Frankly I don't know.)

24 Mohawk Indians

12 Officers

12 Hessian Troops

Here's what a full set looks like.

There were many variations in the two colours. Whether this is a result of sun fading, age or variations in plastic I'm not sure.

Here's a comparison of the figures with Airfix, Revell and Zvezda figures. As you can see, they measure up size wise with Revell and Zvezda, but they do tower over Airfix.

One observation I've had is that these figures have resisted the plastic rot that many old Airfix figures have experienced. They remain bendable and hold their shape.

Now these figures were a little odd compared to Airfix figures, but they conveyed the expected general appearance of Revolutionary War Soldiers. The dragoons have the boiled leather helmets, albeit with minimal detail. The tricornes are fine, but the Hessians/Grenadiers sport rather fanciful mitres. Reminicent of the old Bee Hive Honey logo, they did stretch the imagination.

The Indians were a little disapointing at first, One would have expected the feathered Iroquois of children's books or hollywood. Or at least the ones from the ad. But in reality, the general costume is rather apt when compared to contemporary art.

In point of fact, the posing and sculpting of the soldiers closely resemble the depictions seen on artwork and posters made early in the revolution.
Here are a few pictures of some early depictions of the war by artist Amos Doolittle: