Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Rorkes Drift 28mm Figures

As promised some more pictures of the latest commission of British Zulu War Infantry. Featured are Lt's Bromhead and Chard, Corporal Scheiss ,commissioner Dalton and Surgeon Reynolds as well as a selection of rank and file.

Warlord have along with Empress miniatures released a line of Anglo Zulu War figures. I have painted these using Acrylics with a Matt varnish. The helmets are dyed khaki brown and have no badges rather than being white as they are often seen  in films as Lord Chelmsford had issued orders that all troops should do so.

Lieutenant Chard and his bugler. you'll note that as Chard was not an infantry officer his jacket is different to that of Lieutenant Bromhead. The blue highlight on the trousers has been emphasised by the flash on the camera. and is not as bright under normal light.

The Lieutenant Bromhead Figure. Armed with a rifle and no doubt ready to lead his flying squad into any Zulu break through.
Lieutenant Chard revolver in hand stands ready to repel the Zulu hordes 
Commissary Dalton. During the film Zulu the this character plays very little part in the action but historically he was awarded the Victoria Cross and is named by many testimonies as a true leader and inspiration on the day of the battle. Indeed Henry Hook VC (also wrongly portrayed as a drunken miscreant) called the ex RSM the bravest man he had ever met in his written testimony.

 Corporal Scheiss of Royal Natal Police Force

Surgeon Reynolds of the Army Hospital Corps. I couldn't find any pictures of this chap so used the film Zulu and the dead paper hanger scene as inspiration hence the sweaty blood smear across his forehead and blooded apron, hands and shirt.

 An infantry Sergeant. The manufacturer has sculpted the sergeant stripes onto the figures as do the Perry brothers. Its a nice touch and makes painting rank insignia that much easier. Its a pity that not all the figure manufacturers do this.

A closer look at the bugler. If you like these figures and want your own set you can find them in the on line store at www.abrushtoofar.com

Friday, 1 March 2013

Zulus (Thousands of Them)

With the success of our painted British Anglo Zulu Infantry we have now added the Married and Unmarried Zulus to our range of painted figures. These figures are from the Warlord stables. Each unit is painted and based on laser cut ply

The Zulu army was a formidable foe. Well-trained, well-led, and well-equipped for campaigns, the Zulu regiments were the terror of Africa. Created by the great Shaka, founder of the nation, each regiment was composed of small companies who trained together, and a regiment could be 1,000 men strong.They were then brigaded together to form divisions that could move at great speed and with drilled precision, forming the classic Zulu attack formation of the Horns of the Buffalo.

The military system formed units into married and unmarried units, so a cadre of young men would be forced to remain unmarried on the King's orders until they had “washed their spears” in the blood of their enemies. They are armed with throwing spears, smooth bore muskets and the deadly stabbing short spear whilst their patterned ox-hide shields help identify their parent regiment.

Once they were blooded, and only then, would they sew in the characteristic head ring which is the symbol of a mature and married warrior, showing his much enhanced status in society.

These then are the finest warriors of a fierce and proud army of 40,000 men, eager to preserve Zululand from all invaders, Swazi, Boer or British!

Usuthu! The feared Zulu war cry of 'Kill!' shouted by hundreds of brave, fierce warriors would put fear into the hearts of most men. The men shouting this battle-cry  have a lot to prove as they are the unmarried warriors of the Zulu impi's. Zulu tradition held that until they 'washed their spears' in the blood of an enemy of the King they could not choose a girl to marry, so closing and killing an enemy ensured a bride and a greatly enhanced status.

These young bloods moved swiftly in extended order, sniping with their selection of antique firearms or hurling long spears some 30 yards with great accuracy.

Although generally stripping down for close quarter fighting, a Zulu dressed in full regalia was an awe-inspiring sight, with monkey tails, otter fur, cow tails and crane feathers creating a look that might overwhelm a foe by looks alone.