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Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Matching Hinton Hunt and Der Kriegspieler Figures - 5/60th Royal American Rifles Example

One of the more intimidating tasks I have attempted in managing the Tennant collection, is matching Der Kriegspieler (DK) figures to a unit of their more refined Hinton Hunt brethren.  DK figures are in many cases a blatant pirated copy of the Hinton Hunt originals, but with the moulds for the Hinton Hunt figures gone (or in hiding) all we are sometimes left with are the DKs.  I have previously added a few DK command figures to British battalions, but as these are generally one of a kind poses, they are more easily hidden.  In the case of the 5th Battalion of the  60th Royal American Rifles, I had to resort to adding DK rank and file to bring the unit up to strength for the planned action at Rolica.  Mr Tennant provided a core of 12 kneeling and walking figures, to which I added three command figures and 9 standing firing figures.

 Here you can see the entire battalion and how it has come together.  All of the DK figures were painstakingly cleaned of their former paint, and meticulously filed and shaped to optimize the metal castings.  I was fortunate to have a number of extras which allowed me to choose those castings that had weathered time to the best effect.

The command stand was the vignette I was least worried about since all of these are DK figures and would not be intermingled with the Hinton Hunt originals.  The Major leading the battalion required some creative painting, as he was really intended to command a light infantry battalion, not a rifles battalion.  I was a bit unsure of the collar flap and how to handle the lace, but I have made what I hope is a reasonable guess.  Seeing these pictures in detail revealed that I had forgotten several of the metallic elements which I will have to go back and correct.  In his case I forgot to paint the hilt of his sword!


 Yet another sin revealed as I realized I had forgotten the hunting horn badge on the back of the backpacks.

 Here you get to the meat of the issue as I am mixing the two figure ranges as well as trying to match the masterful painting of Dick Tennant on the original Hinton Hunt figures.  The kneeling figure and the walking figure are Hintons, and the standing firing figure a Der Kriegspieler figure, no doubt copied from a Hinton Hunt original.  The DKs tend to be just a tiny hair smaller, no doubt due to using a production figure from Hinton Hunt as the master.  The painting and color, while not a precise match, is virtually indistinguishable when seen in mass and without magnification. 

 I rarely record the colors I use when painting figures, in large part because I tend to mix colors a fair amount.  While I came close to the original green used by Mr. Tennant, it is not too hard to distinguish a subtle shift in color.  I do not find this slight inconsistency problematic in the slightest, but rather embrace it as a bit of variety within the unit (at least that is my story and I am sticking to it.)

 The red on the collars and cuffs looks like a tight match at least!

 Matching is less of an issue when the figures are based in singles.  I do like the variety of poses in a skirmishing unit like the rifles.

 Another missing hunting horn badge on the backpack.  Ugh!

 In the meantime the battle board for Rolica has progressed nicely and is drying while I paint the remaining units. 

These farm buildings will represent the village of  Columbeira just outside of Rolica.  The buildings are made from plaster, cast in ancient HO scale Linka system moulds.  The animals are from a nice Pegasso plastics set.


  1. These look lovely, David!

    (Despite the missing hunting horn on the back packs!)

    (I would never have noticed!)

    1. Thanks Tim. The hunting horns won't be missing for long - also forgot the belt buckles...

  2. Looks great, beautiful uniforms and figures!

  3. Wonderful, David! I too would have been hard pressed to spot the differences if you hadn't pointed them out.

    The HH Rifles range has a special charm, I think. I particularly love the chaps running at the trail. The chest-thumping they seem to be engaged in brings me joy every time.

    All the best

    1. I'll never be able to get the image of them chest thumping out of my mind now. Thanks for that!


  4. Really nice work, I can't detect any difference between the old and the new!

  5. I think you've hacked it perfectly. Because the DKs are a different pose to the others you really can't see they're a from different manufacturer.
    I was comforted by you spotting omissions only when viewing photos of your newly finished figures. The number of times I've done a batch completion photo shoot only to spot all sorts of errors (usually of commission rather than omission) it's nice to know I'm in good company.
    Anyway I don't envy those boys struggling up those hills, some of the contours look close enough to be a real challenge. When are we going to see daughter's talents with the pine trees on the post?

  6. Thanks Rob. Glad to know I'm not alone. As for the pine trees on the pole, I'm hoping I can convince her to do so this weekend. The backdrop behind the farmhouse is hers, though mostly obscured this go-round.

  7. Lovely shiny toys as always David...
    You have match the new toys very well...

    Thee scenery is looking good as well...

    All the best. Aly

    1. Thanks Aly. I got all the corrections done last night, and at the suggestion of Mr. Tennant was able to bend the rifle trajectory down a bit so they look less like they are shooting at birds. The final result is even better!