Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Die Kosaken Kommen! February Is Russian Month Continues

For my sixth entry in the Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge, I decided to steppe up my game and do a large entry. These seventeen bad lads are 20mm World War Two Soviet Cossacks, in soft plastic from Revell. I am fairly sure they are out of production now, because they don't show up on the Revell website.

I chose to paint these fellows as per Plate E in the Osprey Men-At-Arms 216, The Red Army Of The Great Patriotic War. The red kubanka cap with white cross on red shows that they are Kuban Cossacks. Those splashes of colour, along with the blue trousers with red piping (as per the Revell box art) will give this unit some death or glory swagger amidst my drab Soviet hordes.

Command stand. The CO sweeps the steppe with his binos for unsuspecting fascists while his aide has dismounted to hold the reigns of his boss' horse. I never noticed this, but the review of this set on the Plastic Soldier Review website points out that the standing figure is way out of proportion to the other figures, I'm not going to let that bother me, they make a good command stand all the same. Actually the PSR entry gives this figures good marks for variety and historical accuracy.

The designers of this set cleverly cast the capes separately, so they could be fitted on the figures once removed from the sprues. For the most part they went on without trouble, though for several figures I had to use putty to hide some gaps between the cape sections.

The charging figures are quite inspiring and ferocious. I opted for round bases for all these figures, on the theory that charges would be pretty ad hoc and irregular affairs, and not the boot to boot and knee to knee formation that the traditional square base implies.

The pack includes one figure firing his rifle, so I decided to base him separately. He can be a lone scout for the rest of the unit.

I am curious to see what these fellows will get up to on the tabletop. Last month I was preaching here on my blog about how reconnaissance actions are not well represented in wargaming. I can imagine these Cossacks engaged in scouting, supporting partisans behind the lines, and raiding German rear echelon units, so I have some ideas for games with these mounted Ivans.

Now, speaking of mounted Ivans, back to those SYW czarist hussars. I can hear balalaikas and drunken singing coming from my painting bench!


  1. "steppe up"? Padre, your coat is already waiting for you in the street. Good thing you paint better than you pun.

  2. I think there's a box of them left in my local toy store. Now you have given me the urge to snap it up, although I supposed to be painting canadians for Normandy.

    Very nice they are.

  3. Padre: my confession.
    For years I have had a box of these fellows sitting in a drawer somewhere awaiting my attention. All this time they have been off the sprues, but no other attention has been given them. You have demonstrated to this mean spirited excuse for a wargamer what they could be made to look like. Thank you.

  4. Padre, Sir, these are fantastic!

  5. Urrah! Urrah! Urrah! Nastarovia, Vladyko!
    Nice work on the capes. I think it would be hard to model the stiff felt and wooden shoulder yoke, but you did it.

  6. They are great. I'm on the look out of a box of them for my own collection.

    Keep up the good work.



  7. Thanks, chaps. Thomas, I'm glad you caught that pun.

  8. Nice work, Padre. I bought this same box... in 1995!! (I took them with me and the painting kit to London when I moved that summer to live in that city, thtt's why I remember so well). Never completed the unit... probably buried somewhere in my plastic mountain.

  9. I am always interested in the Cossacks in World War 2 because my grandfather was a colonel of the Cossacks that changed to fight in the German side. They were still on horses with the Germans as well. Though the Germans did not trust them entirely, they were stationed in France.

    They called on my grandfather because he had been a Czarist cavalry officer in World War 1 and lead a regiment of White cavalry in the civil war.

  10. F for fantastic Mike!

    Really great attention to detail. Good to see the capes proved no problems to a skillful man as yourself.

    Top notch all around.


Blog Archive