Sunday, January 19, 2014

Announcing the Third Fortnight Theme Bonus Round: Vehicle(s) & Curt's 'Sledging for Marbot'

So to end the weekend we find ourselves careening headlong into the much anticipated 'Vehicle' bonus round. In viewing all the entries I was struck again by the wonderful creativity of the participants. (How Andrew managed to successfully rationalize a giant spider for this round still baffles me...). Anyway, enough of my blather, the link to the gallery is here. I hope you enjoy your visit and I urge you to leave a comment if an entry (or let's face it: entries) tickles your fancy. Also, please remember to to take the time to vote for all your favourites - yes, you can vote for as many as you like!

For my own part I had the best intentions to submit a fairly ambitious (and dorky) sci-fi entry but was thwarted waiting for bits to arrive from Europe so I was forced to tack back to my (somewhat less dorky) Retreat of 1812 project.

These snow sledges are an interesting set of models. The history behind these vehicles is that amidst the gruelling French retreat from Russia, when men and horses were perishing by the thousand each day, Colonel Marbot of the 23rd Chasseurs a Cheval came upon the idea of utilizing the many snow sledges common amongst the local peasantry. So Marbot had his entire regiment requisition around 100 sledges (yes, the peasants got the stick again), assigning two men for each sledge, with the passenger acting as a 19th century version of a tail gunner. As muskets were easily found, discarded along the retreat route, Marbot had each sled armed with several ready-loaded muskets so they could 'give a brisk and lively fire' when they were harassed by Cossacks.

And speaking of Cossacks, I've included a troika of the hairy, vodka-swilling fellows that I've recently completed. These are a mixture of Don and Ataman Cossacks, each armed with pistol, sword and lance. Again, all castings are from Perry Miniatures.

The sledge models were a bit of a puzzle to figure out, but once I referred to a few pictures on the web I managed to bodge them together.  Pretty neat all-in-all, and I can imagine quite a few interesting scenarios with them scampering through Russian forests with hordes of Cossacks madly in pursuit.