13 July 2010

Size Comparisons: Cavalry and Artillery

Lee over at Napoleonic Wargames Project has asked me a couple of times how different manufacturers of Cavalry and Artillery compare. I finally had a chance today to take a few snaps, sorry I do not have fancy calibrated back drops, but I believe a sense of the figure size is more important than actual sizes.

I am not as picky as some and I actually like having different manufacturers in my armies, my infantry units have figures from 6 different manufacturers and I am happy in my own way with them all. I find that it is difficult to mix different manufacturers in the same battalion, but in respect to command figures you sometimes have to do this. I also generally like to use the same manufacturer in the same brigade when wargaming, but this is not really for the look, but more a question of easy identification, ie. the Foundry's are the conscript's etc. etc.

Recently Lee has asked me about both artillery and cavalry, he had an attack of the "wobbles" over the Victrix Plastic artillery, and I think I can understand why. The cannon carriages are really quite diminutive, I really can not comment on the figures. Fortunately he seems to have got over it and he recently has done some great work.

Anyway back to the point of the post. I do not have all the manufacturers but I do have some and have taken some photos. Here are some cavalry, I believe that these are all pretty similar in size, aside from the Foundry, which are definitely smaller. I would not mix the other figures in the same unit, but I believe they would be fine in the same brigade. In respect to the Foundry cavalry, I have 2 units and a 3rd unit to paint for Lepic's Imperial Guard Cavalry brigade to add to 2 regiments of Front Rank cavalry. It was clearly a mistake to do it this way and I would avoid using Foundry cavalry unless you plan to do your whole army in Foundry (Front Rank infantry seem to tower over Foundry cavalry). Nothing wrong with Foundry figures, but they do not mix well with some other manufacturers.

The Perry plastic dragoons are to be fine in comparison to the Front Rank, but I would not mix them in the same regiment.
In respect to artillery, the Perry are a little smaller, but again I am happy to have them both in the same army. I would not mix them in the same battery, but otherwise the sense of size is fine.
The overview is more valuable in respect to artillery, unfortunately I am not too sure about the actual sizes of the cannon. I believe the Perry are BH 12 (6pd Hanoverian/British) but can not remember if the Front Rank are 6 or 9 pd. The Austrian gun is a 6pder and the Calpe is also a 6pder.


  1. JAM
    The different size withina same scale is a continuous and unresolved problem. In 1/72 is sometimes unsurmountable and worsened by the 'growing up' virus spreading throughout the different manufactures!

  2. That was a really interesting and useful exercise - thanks for posting!


  3. I've seen the Victirx Plastic British artillery and while the carriages are small and there are no horses, I don't think there's a better "bargain" around. I still prefer the plastic perry figures but will be getting some of the Victrix Artillery soon


  4. Superb John! That was just what I have been looking for, a comparison shot of different ranges. I can see that Perry and Front Rank are fine if not mixed in units so that's reassuring. Thanks for taking the time to do that.

    jmilesr, I have painted a battery of Victrix guns and the wheels are very fine compared to metal guns and lack detail, but like you say they are good for the price. The crew are better, but annoyingly in full dress with cords etc.

    Just to add here for information that the Victrix Old Guard figures are slightly large compared to Perry plastics too, but its not that noticable.

    Thanks again John,

  5. Thanks John for this informative and useful post. The cav one shows exactly what I've been on about to my metal-head mates about 'scale creep'. The Foundry (which nearly everyone had) are the 'true' 25mm and you can really see the difference when next to other 28mm makes. All my old Foundry look like pygmies - its accentuated by headgear as my Front Rank Bavarians are giants next to the Foundry. With artillery models I have observed similar problems. The Elite range guns are all huge in comparison to most others. The Old Glory Russian horse artillery 8 pdrs were tiny next to the figures and just didn't look right so I used Front Rank guns which at least look the correct scale. There is so much variance with artillery but as your comparison shot shows, at least there is some conformity amongst several major manufacturers. I just don't know how the plastics will go but I think Victrix are the only mob contemplating guns in 28mm - which is still good for us collectors. Its a bit confusing as Lee observed, the figures themselves are slightly larger than the Perrys, although parts are quite interchangeable. As Rafa points out, the problem at 1/72 or 20mm scale is just as bad if not worse. I have boxes of Minifigs which are too big for 20mm and too small for the 28mm (now the 'new' 25s!) The only way around it is just to collect from similar scale manufacturers.