Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Redemption Story III: Back in the Saddle Again


Back again to that heap of forlorn arms, legs, heads, and torsos that I got on eBay.  This sad assortment was a once-upon-a-time horde of toy soldiers for some young boy...a young boy who was particularly hard on the troops.

The mission this time was to see how many of the ten damaged cavalrymen could be made 
whole again.

Like the foot soldiers who appeared in my most recent posts, the men of the mounted arm were in equally , if not worse, stages of damage and destitution.

This cavalry officer has at least his head to hang his hat upon, others were not so lucky (as will be seen).


The first step was to go through the heap of limbs and fragments to determine
if he could be made whole again.

In this instance I (and he) was fortunate.  Everything was present and...

with the help of a few drops of Krazy Glue...

Captain Dumpty had come together again.  However the rehabilitation process has just begun.

Not so easy is one of the more typical troopers of this truncated tribe.

This was the appearance of the majority of the ten cavalrymen.

As with the captain, the missing pieces needed to be located, fracture lines matched and Krazyglued back together.

 These early Britains plastics are far superior than the current generation.  Note the cool carbine, molded separately hanging at his side.  Now to find that other arm.

Krazy Glue alone only "bastes" the pieces together.  The real bond is made by "heat welding" one piece to another with a modified soldering iron

Once reassembled everyone got primed and ready to paint.

Sarge LaFarge leads the way, fully restored to duty, finished toy soldier brite and sporting the chevrons of a newly-minted NCO.

I like his neatly-trimmed Van dyk.

Choosing to completely alter the painting of these soldiers from their original Britains scheme is a reflection of the licence that comes with resurrecting destroyed (and some would say "noncollectable") toy soldiers.

Our captain has returned to the active list and is anxious to rejoin his unit.

Generally, when I do chevrons, I simply paint a large chevron shape and then use a 000-nib technical pen to create the individual stripes.

Here they come!

Sabers drawn and galloping into action...

Of the ten, only two were total losses.  There little plastic families can take comfort in the knowledge that their men had given their all for Lincoln and Liberty.

This eBay deal is getting better all the time.

Soldier on!



Scott B. Lesch said...

Wow! Nice. I wonder happened to the Britains plastics I donated to my local library 40 odd years ago that may or may not still be in storage,

Brian Carrick said...

Nice work Mannie, you have done these old warriors proud sir!

Archduke Piccolo said...

The way you have resurrected and finished these guys you would never know they had arrived in such a smashed up state. Not many of us could transform a dodgy deal into a brilliant bargain in this way.

In the earlier postings I was as much impressed by the way you found a use for figures that could not be restored to their original state.
Excellent work!

Old Silly said...


You have saved these men from the grave, well done toy doctor!


Old Silly said...


Brilliant, you are the toy doctor.


Sam Wise said...

I've missed this post!
your work is awesome and surprising too! Restoring old Toy Soldiers is an unusual subject of the Blog-World (as far I know!) and it's pleasant to follow your blog, it makes me a break with the painting smaller scales !
(and also, it reminds me when I was young: I must always repair mime, (with glue... and lighter!)because the battles were difficult!)
so... thanks!

Toymaker of Williamsburg said...

What a fun project. I'm glad some of the troops pulled through.

Unknown said...

Brilliant idea using the broken soldiers as partially submerged poses. The transparent bases are also clever. I've done alot of soldier repair and modification myself, but these ideas are unique and creative. Well done.

Basil Duke said...

Well done, Mannie! Hey, there's a new line of 54mm plastic Civil War soldiers out - 'Expeditionary Force' is the company's name. Artillery batteries, cavalry, infantry, dismounted cavalry, etc. They look awesome, per the photos I've seen. Right up your ACW alley.