I recently ordered some more figures from Pendraken, after learning that if you ask nicely, Leon will sell figures individually rather than in the packs they normally come in. Since their command packs come in bags of four sets of three men (officer, drummer, standard bearer), I hadn’t bothered to buy any – I don’t want that many command figures in the same poses, and I wanted two flags on each command base (regimental or state and national). When, after asking on the Pendraken forum whether it would be possible to get two flag bearers in each set instead of just one, I was informed that Leon would be ok with doing so, and so I put in another order.
I have to give credit where it is due: Leon at Pendraken did an amazing job. In the end, I ordered all sorts of bits and pieces from throughout the ACW range they do, a few figures here, a few there and so on. When I messed up the order (I put two of each officer, drummer etc down rather than one), he got back to me quickly and sorted it out, and seemed fine with me being a huge pain in the arse getting exactly which poses I wanted too. My hat is well and truly doffed to Leon, he does a great job of customer service. The shipping was amazingly fast too – I put in the order less than a week before christmas, and it arrived the day after Boxing Day. To get here so quickly from England is pretty good, but especially at the time of year too.
Here are just a few of the figures I got this time – lots of infantry in different poses, with kepi, hats, in greatcoats, iron brigade, dismounted cavalry, and lots of command stands.
These are just a few of the figures, on painting sticks ready to be undercoated. I’m not actually sure how many figures I have now from Cracker Line and Pendraken, but it’s a lot. The starting force for Longstreet is three units of infantry at 8-10 bases each, a unit of cavalry at 8 bases, and an artillery battery of 3 stands of guns. I don’t have any artillery yet (I’m waiting on Cracker Line to get them out, since they’re supposed to be out sometime soon in the new year), and I only have enough cavalry for one unit. On the other hand, at 5-6 figures per base, I have enough infantry for at least two forces now. I don’t know whether to build up a variety of units to make sure I have plenty of union stands for the campaign game as it goes on and my force grows, or whether to create a Confederate force too. I’m loath to do the latter, since I’m not a fan of the Confederacy, but it would allow me to lend a force to those at the club who wanted to try the game. I’ll have to think more on that.
I was going to buy some more cavalry from The Baggage Train, but I wasn’t able to. My first problem was that their website didn’t seem to want to let me pay by paypal – I don’t know if this was just a problem for my browser, because I was ordering from Canada, or with their website. Whatever it was, I couldn’t pay for my order on their website, so I tried emailing them instead. At first, I got a reply, saying they’d look into it. And then…nothing. I tried again, several times, but with the same result. I tried emailing again to see if they could work out the cost and email me a paypal link for my (admittedly small) order so I could pay that way and not go through their website. I even chatted to one of the other members of the WD3 forum (who are a great bunch of people) who knew the owner and tried to get them to reply to me. Grand result…Not a word back.
So, the upshot of all this is that my force will be without any figures from the Baggage Train. It’s a shame, since I hear they’re nice figures and would have fit in nicely with my Cracker Line and Pendraken ones. Hopefully CL will do some soon so I can mix them in with my Pendraken ones for more variety. The difference in customer service between Leon and Pendraken and the Baggage Train is astronomical though – if I want more 10mm figures again, I’ll be ordering from Pendraken, and I’ll loudly extol their figures and service until the cows come home. They do a nice variety of poses – usually four to a pack, with two packs in firing poses with small differences here and there between the two packs – added bedrolls, blankets etc. They’re nice and crisp figures, plenty of detail, not too much flash, and pretty sturdy – I only had one rifle break off as I was cleaning the figures up. My only criticism is that some of the marching poses are holding their rifles on the wrong shoulder, but that’s easily squared away – those men are obviously new recruits who haven’t had the proper training before they’ve been sent to the front…