Painting a Napoleonic Army

Chapter One - Planning and Buying

After finishing the ACW armies I began to look for a new large army project looking at English Civil war, Jacobite Rebellion and finally at Napoleonics and I needed to decided on what size figure to do the the project in: 25mm, 15mm and finally 6mm. What I looked at were, rules, size, figure availability, cost etc.. I wanted to do a large army with a variety of battles and appeal. This eliminated the various wars of England and I started looking at Napoleonic wars as a possibility.

I researched several rules sets and reviews of each. I considered Shako, Volley and Bayonet, Napoleons Battles and others. Since I had experience in brigade level games with Johnny Reb, I took a look at General de Brigade (GdB) then Grand Armee. I started out with GdeB then after painting went to Grand Armee and then finally settling on Orders to Eagles after I rebased to GA from GdeB. This meant I rebased twice before I settled on a rules set, Orders to Eagles.

I wanted to build two one thousand figure armies. GdB is a 1 to 20 figure to man ratio which would allow me to build two corps sized armies of 20,000 troops. This would be a manageable size to paint and maintain. I next had to determine the figure size. 25mm would be out of the question because of cost and time involved in painting. That left 15mm and 6mm. Since I was doing 6mm and had the buildings etc. to use I decided adding another scale would be out of the question and I would go with 6mm.

I was beginning to do the uniform research when I picked up Wagram by F. -G. Hourtoulle at Command Con in November 2002. This had detailed drawings of Austrian and French uniforms of 1809. This was the last piece of information I needed. A quick order to Nafzinger for a few orders of battle and I was ready.

I knew what figure companies I was going to use, Baccus for infantry and Adler for artillery and cavalry. Now I needed to fund the project. I had some 15mm, 20mm and 25mm figures I never used that I had previously and painted. I sold these on eBay. I used these funds to buy the needed figs. I ordered from Baccus two French double divisions in shako, two Austrian double divisions in helmet and in single division in shako. This adds up to 1100+ French figures and 1300+ Austrian figures. I ordered from Adler one hundred sixty French Chassurs, 80 Hussars, forty lancers and dragoons and artillery totaling about twenty five artillery pieces of various sizes. The Austrians were 160 Hussars, and eighty Uhalns and about 20 or so artillery pieces.

I ordered the figures direct from both manufactures and I have say both were great to do business with. I had previously used Baccus and I can't say too much about how good doing business is with Peter. Buying from Adler was new and came off without a hitch. Both companies shipped all the figures to me and everything arrived within weeks of placing my order. By the way both are located in England.

That's where everything stands, I will be doing updates on the Napoleonic Project as I progress through each step.

Chapter Two - Figure Prep and Painting the First Austrians