Sunday, August 29, 2010

awful officers...

I've got plenty of American command figures for the SpanAm game. Six Teddy Roosevelts, three Pershings, seven standard bearers. Geesh... it even looks like about half the Buffalo Solders wear chevrons. I don't really have any figures that will work as Spanish officers, though. I suppose I'll have to paint some cockades on a few of the straw hats and use those figures as officers. From what I've read the Spanish officers generally didn't wear distinctions in the field anyway. Very practical. No sense in making yourself a target for Cuban guerrillas after all.

But I did want to have at least one general officer for each side. The American uniforms at this level don't look much different from the Civil War. Consequently, I pulled a BMC mounted officer out of the bit box and painted him up in Federal blue. In fact, the figure strongly reminds me of a photograph of Fighting Joe Wheeler during the SpanAm War. These figures come sans bases so I mounted the horses on some heavy poster board I recently got from Dick Blick's art supply. The bases warped once I put flocking and such on the top side. But moistening the bottom and weighing them down as they dried returned them to a nice flat profile.

To a certain degree Spanish officers of the war remind me of Confederates. So, I took another BMC figure--which I think is suppose to represent Robert E. Lee--and decided to use him as a Spanish officer. The conversion knife came out for this one. I trimmed off the coat buttons so it could be painted as a single breasted coat. I shortened the coat tails and carved away the ends of the sash. Unfortunately, I really couldn't get the knife blade to the sash around the officer's waist. I had to guess at the colors for this figure but overall I'm fairly pleased with him.

The BMC horse are dreadful. The stirrups are molded to the horse's belly, the reins defy gravity on one side of the horse's neck and are totally missing from the other. These horses have 18th century pistol covers. On the other hand they have a Currier and Ives type of charm and a certain circus animal grace to them. Oh, well. I'm pretty sure BMC stands for Badly Modeled Crap. On the other hand, I'm sure BMC's target market doesn't include military historians. They don't charge that kind of price, either.

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