Part 2: The Build

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Now that I have built the horse for this piece (see part 1), I had the figure of the Dragoon to build. The pose was interesting as it had the rider firing a musket from the horse. This is a pleasant change from your ordinary static rider sitting astride the horse.

The Dragoon was a fairly simple piece to build but there were some fit problems just as with the horse. The arms and legs of the rider required some filler to make them look right. The head was in a few parts and fit together well. The helmet consisted of many parts and went together just fine. I left the helmet off to paint the figure as it would have obstructed the face. I should have left off the arms also as painting the face around the arms proved a bit of a challenge.

This was a very colorful guy to paint and proved a real joy to do. I used Vallejo and Andrea acrylic paints for the whole figure. When this was completely dry I added the accessories such as the saddle packs, pouch, sword and bayonet. In the past I used sheet lead to make the sword belts and reins for the horse. Purely by accident I discovered electrician tape. This worked out beautifully and created perfect sag for the reins and sword belts. In addition, I didn't have to paint it black as it was already that color.

For the metallic color on the sword and helmet, I used JoSanya acrylic gold and then highlighted with their bright gold. This allowed for just the right amount of shadow in the helmet.

After I painted the rifle with leather and added the brass and steel color, I fitted it to the rider's hands. This was a bit tricky as it didn't go the way I wanted it to. It looks a little different but it's OK.

The Dragoon sat on the horse perfectly without any filler needed. The stirrups were put on with the same electrician's tape.

Now that the figure was complete with a little touchup painting, I had to put him on a base. I had an old award plaque that I used and covered it with Celluclay mixed with Durham's Water putty, white glue and acrylic earth paint. I applied this to the wooden base and used the horses hoof to make hoof prints in the semi soft Celluclay. As is my trademark, I added a tree stump to the base. Finally I drilled a hole in the horse hooves and also into the base added a post of paper clip and CA glued him to the base.

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Overall I am very please with the results. It was a little more difficult to build due to the fit but I was very pleased with the details provided in this figure. This may be a problem piece for a beginner but with a little effort it can be produced into a very fine representation of the French Dragoon.

I would like to thank IPMS/USA and MiniArt for this review sample and I really do look forward to seeing more mounted Napoleonic pieces in this scale.

Part 1

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