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Strelets

Set 058

Russian Dragoons

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All figures are supplied unpainted    (Numbers of each pose in brackets)
Stats
Date Released 2006
Contents 12 figures and 12 horses
Poses 12 poses, 12 horse poses
Material Plastic (Medium Consistency)
Colours Grey
Average Height 23 mm (= 1.66 m)

Review

In contrast to the Western front, that in the east was vast and the front line moved hundreds of miles over the course of World War I. This gave cavalry much more room to manoeuvre, so making it a much more important element in the conflict then in the west, but it still had the problem of facing infantry with rapid rifle fire and machine guns as well as artillery. Due to its size the Russian Empire had an enormous cavalry arm, both Cossacks and regular regiments, with the latter being divided along traditional lines (dragoons, hussars etc.), although such distinctions were by 1914 meaningless in terms of tactics.

As usual we find 12 poses in this set, with most being troopers using either a rifle or sabre. Opportunities to use edged weapons in anger were not common but certainly did occur, and the poses here are OK if sometimes quite flat.

Much of the Russian cavalry wore the same uniform, but the figures here are dressed for cold weather. Instead of a greatcoat they wear a shorter pea jacket and on the head they have a fleece or woolen cap. They also wear a cowl and the box artwork implies they have gloves, although such things are indistinguishable at this scale. All are armed with both sabre and rifle, although most are missing the bayonet scabbard which was attached to that of the sword. That aside the accuracy seems fine.

All the horses in the set are in different poses, although of course some are quite similar. As usual the poses vary greatly in terms of anatomical accuracy, but it is nice to see some standing and walking ones to allow a wider range of uses. The same models appear in the Strelets sets of Cossacks for the same campaign, and are something of a compromise between the look of these two types of cavalry, but the differences are not great and these are fine for this subject.

Sculpting too is reasonable if sometimes a little flat, both in terms of detail and the overall look of the figure. However there is no flash at all and the men fit their mounts very tightly.

The winter costume means these are not typical of Russian cavalry for much of the year, and it is to be hoped that Strelets produce a summer version in the future, but these are an interesting collection of figures for a much overlooked aspect of the Great War.


Ratings

Historical Accuracy 9
Pose Quality 8
Pose Number 10
Sculpting 7
Mould 9

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