Friday, 18 January 2019

From GregB: Prussian Artillery for Franco-Prussian War (30 points)

Prussian artillery from 1870, 28mm figures from Wargames Foundry.
 Not a lot to share this week, but progress is progress and I'm pleased to be making more, even if it is just a bit.  This is a Prussian artillery piece from 1870 for my ongoing Franco-Prussian War project. The figures are all 28mm from the Wargames Foundry range.

Artillery was THE decisive arm for the Prussians in the war against France in 1870-71. In terms of small-arms, the French Chassepot rifle was the class of the period.  But the French artillery enjoyed no such advantage. The French artillery was obsolescent and plagued by things like dud fuses. On the other hand, while the Prussian infantry rifles were greatly out-classed by their French opponents, the Prussian artillery arm was kitted out with the latest-and-greatest of the era - steel breech-loading rifled artillery.  Manufactured by Krupp, the Prussian guns of 1870 were far more deadly and useful than the pieces of the French Imperial Army, and the Prussian army made full use of this advantage during the invasion of France.

While painting artillery is far from my favourite activity, I do love the 28mm figures from Wargames Foundry.
 Once in place, Prussian guns could easily wipe out the French batteries with fast and accurate counter-battery fire.  The gunners could then turn their attention to the main French lines, and blast whole regiments into dust. It was all rather dreadful for the French, who would slow and halt Prussian attacks with their magnificent Chassepot rifles, only to see a key artillery bombardment open a critical hole in their lines that aggressive Prussians would exploit. A devastating artillery bombardment helped the Prussians to win the battle at Gravelotte-St. Privat, shattering the French right and turning what had been, up to that point, a rather harsh and failed day for the Prussians.

Bit of a stretch to have these on a table in 28mm, but whatever - they will look cool, that is what counts.
These guns so greatly outperform the cannons of the "Black Powder" era that having them on the table as models at all is a bit of a bodge, particularly with 28mm-sized castings. But it is a bodge I am prepared to make just so we can have a more complete, all-arms game of some sort of the table. The gun & crew will represent a battery of Krupp guns.  The Prussian side of my collection now has two of these, an ominous sign for anyone wishing to play the French when the time comes...

Excellent animation in the castings.

"French sighted - fire!"
For scoring, we have four crew and one weapon in 28mm, which should work out to 30 points for this week.  Not a whole lot, but as I said, progress is progress, and I am very much hoping to keep making progress on this project.  As Curt and others noted before, I really dislike painting artillery, so it is great that I am getting these things finished and out of the way, bringing a first game that much closer!


"Ahh, Lili. Lili, Lili, Lili, guns, Lili, Lili... I cannot finds the words to truly express my joy at the rekindling of our association!"

"Come on, Lamarr, let's get down to bwass tacks. What do you want me to do?"

"I want you to destroy the French in St. Privat. You think you can do it?"

"Is Bismark a hewwing?
Vhy don't you admit it, Franzy? Krupp's too much of artillery for you. I know. You're going to need an army to beat him! You're finished. Fertig! Verfallen! Verlumpt! Verblunget! Verkackt!" 

While the products of the fertile . . . furnaces . . . of Messers Krupp are often given sole credit for the Franco-Prussian War, I suspect it was less the technology and more the tactics. The French were not overmatched that much in artillery (with twelve batteries and two Mitrailleuses to twelve batteries at the Corps level), but the Corps artillery was not used with the same aggression as German. And so the Chassepot became the counterbattery weapon of choice. I would certainly suggest they belong on the table.

Vill you care for another thirty points?


  1. Lovely work! Really like your basing as well, very suitable.

  2. Outstanding! Your disliske of painting big guns does not show.

  3. Very nice work, and such an informative submission as well!

  4. Fantastic Gun Model, the base sets the figures off really nicely.

  5. Lovely looking gun and fab crew!
    Best Iain

  6. Wonderful additions to your collection Greg! I wholeheartedly agree on your assessment of artillery and rifle performance in the FPW.

  7. That is one lovely piece of artillery piece! It almost persuaded me to get into all this 1870-1871 business great stuff indeed!

  8. Nice looking gun and crew, well done!

  9. Great looking Krupp and Krew - you should paint more artillery. Also you paint paint Persians to face Byron's Greeks.

    1. Thanks Peter - but I have high confidence Byron can handle the Persians himself...maybe Challenge X or XI :-)

  10. Beautiful gun and crew, Dude! They are a telling counterpoint to the French gun team you did a few weeks ago. Really like the officer at the rear, directing the gun crew.

    1. Thanks dude! Yes, I love that officer sculpt...looks menacingly competent...

  11. A lovely looking gun there Greg!


  12. Smashing looking gun, that basing is the business.


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