Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Afghan artillery

Now that the Pathan tribesmen have a field gun, it's time for the Afghan army.

I started with Perry Miniatures Egyptian field gun, naively thinking it would be a good basis for an Afghan artillery piece.  One of these days, I'll learn to do research first, and then spend money.  Ah, well, live and learn 8^)

Here is the base piece:

It is a Krupp 6-pdr, and the crew are looking quite dashing with those fezzes.  Fezzes are cool.

So I went looking for information on Afghan uniforms and kit.  The best place on the web for info on the Second Anglo-Afghan War is the Mad Guru's Maiwand Day blog.  That's where I learnt that the Afghan army in 1880 had some very modern artillery in the form of Armstrong guns (d'oh!).  As I'm not about to put my flimsy modelling skills to the test by chopping up the Krupp gun, the gunners will get to keep their historically inaccurate artillery piece.  Maybe the Russians smuggled the Krupp gun to Kabul from Essen.

I also found out that fezzes are all wrong for Afghanistan.  (OK, I already knew that).  Preferred headress for Afghan artillerymen was either a brass helmet with a red horsehair plume or a forage cap with a red tuft.  Now, my lead/plastic mountain happens to include one box of the new(ish) Perry plastic British infantry for 1877-1885, and that box includes two officer heads wearing forage caps!  But of course, I have four gunners.  I considered a few options like trying to modify the fezzes into Afghan beehive hats, or wrapping turbans around them, but those efforts looked pretty crappy.  Then I hit on the brilliant idea of taking French carabinier heads.  The plume wasn't right, so I chopped that off and modelled new plumes from Procreate.  And so here is how the new Afghan artillery turned out: