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Set 505

Union Infantry

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All figures are supplied unpainted    (Numbers of each pose in brackets)
Date Released 1995
Contents 50 figures
Poses 12 poses
Material Plastic (Medium Consistency)
Colours Blue
Average Height 24 mm (= 1.73 m)


Several manufacturers concentrated on the history of their own country for many of their products, and in the case of IMEX that was the inspiration for the whole of their range. The largest conflict ever to take place on American soil was the Civil War of 1861 to 1865, so their first few sets provided the basic units for this unhappy conflict. Other manufacturers had already provided sets for this conflict, so this offering is now just one of many sets of infantry for the American Civil War, but it also happens to be one of the better ones.

The poses include some unusual choices, which add character to a set that also contains all the normal ones, although they will not endear themselves to many wargamers. The flag-bearer is kneeling and waving an exceedingly small flag, which is hardly a normal activity, although flag-bearers were certainly picked out as targets by the enemy, making it a dangerous occupation. Another man is sitting on a barrel drinking from a cup in an awkward fashion (clearly done to allow the mould to work properly). This will not be of much use to gamers, and because of the awkward stance it will not win many admirers elsewhere either, although in general we do like this sort of more relaxed pose so long as there are plenty of action ones already available, which in a selection of only 12 poses is unlikely. The men advancing are somewhat awkwardly posed, with arms in strange positions to make the sculpting easier, and a couple of the poses are a shade flat, such as the man running with musket sticking out from the side of his body. The sergeant in the second row is in interesting choice, firing his pistol, but many of the basic poses are included and most here are usable.

The men are all in typical uniform of sack coat and fatigue cap, which have been properly done, as have the various belts and items of equipment, A few have the knapsack, which is fine, and a couple have instead rolled their blanket round their body, in which they might deposit some of their belongings, which was a common-enough practice. The bugler, which is one of the best poses here, has been nicely done, being correctly armed with revolver and sword, and showing his chest braiding to good effect. All army musicians had this feature on their uniform, which was in arm-of-service colour (light blue for infantry), but since this made them excellent targets for enemy snipers the standard infantry coat was frequently substituted when in the field. The officer wears a mid-length frock coat and a Hardee hat or similar, with some sort of emblem on the front.

Most of the poses are well sculpted and natural looking, with the overall detail being both accurate and crisp. Equipment is well-defined and clear, and the faces are very expressive, which really gives these figures some life. We found no flash or other unwanted plastic anywhere, nor any other blemishes, so this is a nicely turned-out set.

In what is essentially a pretty good set there are a few let-downs however. As already mentioned, the flag is far too small; it should be about two metres square on a three metre pole - hugely bigger than this affair. Also the NCO firing the pistol (probably a sergeant because of the sash he wears) lacks the regulation sword he should be carrying, yet the sash, which was regulation, was seldom worn in the field. Also it should be observed that several of the men have their cartridge pouch attached to their waist belt; this was certainly done but it was rare as its weight when full was much better supported by a strap over the shoulder.

The flag bearer is a strange pose, with a ridiculous flag, and the drinking man could easily have been substituted by a much more useful pose - a man marching springs readily to mind. Still this is a fair set that should find favour with Civil War enthusiasts everywhere, though the execution has been better done than the design in a few places.


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

Further Reading
"American Civil War 1: Infantry" - Histoire & Collections (Officers & Soldiers Series No.1) - André Jouineau - 9782908182859
"American Civil War Armies (2) Union Troops" - Osprey (Men-at-Arms Series No.177) - Philip Katcher - 9780850456905
"American Civil War Union Army" - Brasseys (History of Uniforms Series) - Robin Smith - 9781857531749
"Billy Yank" - Greenhill (GI Series No.4) - Michael McAfee - 9781853672385
"Flags of the American Civil War (2) Union" - Osprey (Men-at-Arms Series No.258) - Philip Katcher - 9781855322554
"The United States Infantry 1775-1918" - Blandford - Gregory Urwin - 9780713717570
"Uniforms of the American Civil War" - Blandford (Blandford Colour Series) - Philip Haythornthwaite - 9780713707571
"Union Infantryman 1861-65" - Osprey (Warrior Series No.31) - John Langellier - 9781841761763
"Union Troops of the American Civil War" - Crowood (Europa Militaria Special Series No.17) - Jonathan Sutherland - 9781861267696

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