Christmas is out of the way and though still rather stressed and weary I can now to some extent concentrate on my model making again. I have several kits on the go at the moment, some, like this one, half finished. Master Box are another relatively new model company, but like Mini Art they are producing some interesting kits. One that immediately caught my attention when I saw it, was this one of a Yankee cavalry scout with a red Indian tracker, presumably hot on the trail some Confederate soldiers or marauding Sioux or Cheyenne. It was a scene straight out of the innumerable cowboy films I watched when I was a kid and of course became a must-have. This was also the first kit I purchased online from Hannants, who sent it very quickly.
I have actually had this kit for some time and at one point had nearly finished the Indian tracker and his own horse too and completed the kit, but made something of a mess of the latter so I invested in another box so I could finally finish it off. With one thing and another, though, just lately a lot of things have been put on the backburner. I do hope to get the Indian done sometime soon, but thought I'd post a picture of the work so far, namely the Union cavalryman astride his horse.
My first impressions of the kit out of the box were favourable. There was very little flash and the prep work was pretty straight forward as regards cleaning off seams, etc., with very little filling needed, plus all the parts fitted together well. I particularly liked the add-on portion of belt to the strap across his chest which saved having to make an additional part myself which would probably have looked rather poor compared to the rest of the figure.
And the figure is very nicely modelled and despite the scale difference the sculpting reminds me to some degree of the style of the old Airfix WW2 multipose kits. I have to say, the cavalryman sits in the saddle in quite a relaxed, naturalistic way and there is some leeway in his pose, with a hand resting on the blanket to his front or rear, both of which look equally good. The cavalryman also has a choice of headgear, either the wide brimmed type I have used, or the small peaked cap that can be seen on the box artwork.
The figure painted up very easily, all the accoutrements making a nice addition to the figure scattered around the saddle, though some of these do really need to be tackled separately before being stuck on. When I get to have a good look at my paints I'll note down here what colours I used on this kit, they were for the most part good approximations of the colours suggested on the box.
My only reservations were a small niggle with the uniform which I knew straight away to be wrong in that the torso had shoulder tabs for an officer, but chevrons on the sleeve for a senior sergeant, so the tabs had to go. There is also, I feel, something wrong with his horse's head; perhaps the head is too big, I don't know, but it annoys me somehow.
As can be seen, I've used an old light switch plate again for the base covered in 'grass', which looks pretty good, though I will have to mess it up a little once the missing scout and his nag are in place.