I've started work on the Grenadiers de France. Why not finish the Hasselse Garde first I hear you say? Well I was jealous of Dave (aka Littlejohn) over at the Lead Gardens blog. When I saw his SSM's, the way ahead seemed clear.
So what have I done so far? If you look back at the pictures of the Grenadiers de France, you'll notice that the minis where glued to cardboard bases and some bases were flocked.
Removing the cardboard bases took a couple of minutes, but I had to find a way to remove the glued on static grass. I took an old paintbrush and pored some Dreft Super Power degreasing agent in a cup. I guessed if it is strong enough to remove crusts from frying pans and ovens it would be a good enough for my purposes. I carefully "painted " the bases with the product and waited some 20 minutes. I then carefully scraped of the softened flock, glue and paint with a not to sharp potato knife as not to damage the soft plastic. I then neutralised the product by washing the last bits of in clean water using an old soft kiddy toothbrush.
I expected some damage to feet and lower legs, but all in all that was negligible. This will be touched up before painting the bases.
Next step will be removing the paint from the muskets and repainting of bases and muskets. The muskets have to be redone as the paint has flaked off of most of them. I'll also be converting new standard bearers and NCO's. But that's for later (although I have basing schemes already written up and sketched in my scrapbook).
I found that time or the varnish used has turned the white on the models slightly yellowish. I can do two things. First of all touch up the damaged gaiters using a slightly coloured white. Or, just paint white and add a tiny drop of a yellow/brown ink to the gloss varnish to finish of. That way the minis won't loose any of their aged character, rather than just repainting parts of the models. I'm starting to feel like somebody restoring an old expensive painting...
Good beginnings I think, ...As ever, it would be nice if you fine gentlemen (and lady) shared your thoughts...
3 hours ago