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Author Topic: British officer uniform help - update 15th March (page 2)  (Read 3828 times)

Offline Red Orc

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British officer uniform help - update 15th March (page 2)
« on: January 31, 2013, 05:55:24 PM »
Yet again, I come humbly begging your expert Colonial opinions as a total chump who knows nothing of historical stuff.

I have 'acquired', from whiskyrat some spiffing British-type chaps (Mostly Moustachioed) and I need information.





My suspicion is that the jhodpur-type trousers and puttees, combined with the pith-helmets, would put most of these chaps somewhere in the vicinity of the Second Boer War. My understanding anyway is that puttees were adopted after the introduction of khaki. So if they're wearing puttees, they must also be wearing khaki, is that correct?

Thanks for your help, esteemed and knowledgeable ones!
« Last Edit: April 06, 2018, 07:42:18 PM by Red Orc »

Offline joroas

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Re: British officer uniform help needed!
« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2013, 05:58:30 PM »
No, puttes wear worn as early as Sudan, so any combination of scarlet, blue, sand or khaki would do.....  Depends on where you are setting your games.
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Offline Plynkes

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Re: British officer uniform help needed!
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2013, 06:44:33 PM »
Puttees can go with scarlet in come rare cases, as Joroas says. The Princess of Wales' Own wore such a combination at Ginnis in the Sudan in 1885. It's possible a similar outift was worn in the early stages of the Second Afghan War too.


Matey top left is wearing a Wolseley helmet. That puts him in the late 1890s and firmly in khaki.

Fellow bottom left isn't wearing a uniform, he's from a pack of civilians (but you could paint him up as a rather slovenly-dressed officer).

Bottom middle with the riding crop seems to have some kind of civilian pattern pith helmet on. He's in shirtsleeves too. Suitably vague enough that you could use him for any time from the 1870s until the 1920s really, and probably beyond. If the general is a stickler he probably won't like his men dressing like this. Looks like an officer of irregulars/native troops, possibly in some remote mosquito-infested hell-hole far away from parade grounds and martinets.


The jackets all of the others are wearing are slightly problematic if you want to paint them red. Unless they have had them tailored to their own specifications (which did happen), neither the dress tunic or the undress frock of the scarlet uniforms of the 1870s-1880s had those big breast pockets, which are more of a feature of the khaki uniforms of the 1890s. It's up to you whether you care about that or not, though, as they would look pretty cool painted red.
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Offline Red Orc

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Re: British officer uniform help needed!
« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2013, 02:59:57 AM »
Thanks for the info, guys.

I shall paint up a mixture then. My aim is for games to take place more or less between 1879 and 1902 (centred, I suppose, around 1885-95), in Ruritania, Atlantis, K'wesoland and Burunda (fictional colonial posessions in East and West Africa), and Loamshire, with visits to other places, some real, not all of them terrestrial.

I was thinking about making the guy bottom left my general. I figure, they can wear whatever they like. Blue coat and white trousers, maybe. The chap in the middle on the bottom row might make a good commander for my sepoys. Venusian Lizard sepoys, that is.

Some of these chaps may see action not as regular soldiers but as settlers banding together to form local militia units, so a mix of civilian and older-style elements isn't a problem. But the three on the top row and the chap bottom right will be painted in different combinations of red/blue and khaki (maybe I'll go for khaki jackets and blue trousers on at least one of them). Blue jhods and khaki puttees might look weird, though.

Incidently, I went looking for info on both 'puttees' and 'khaki' earlier today and found a couple of Canadian regiments that wore blue puttees - one, because they were raised in a hurry in WWI and didn't have any official supplies, so had to make do with blue cloth as there was no source of khaki; and the other (the 48th Canadian Highlanders in WWII, I think) because there was a shortage of khaki puttees when King George was inspecting them so they made do with blue, and the King remarked he liked them better and they should keep them - 'quite interesting' I thought.

Offline Red Orc

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Re: British officer uniform help - supplemental!
« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2013, 08:43:52 PM »
OK, I've been poking about and...

... it seems, as the changeover from red to khaki was going on, there were several different options that any particular unit could have (without getting into anything complex like Guards or Rifles, or discussion of what's a 'tunic' and what's a 'frock').

1 - classic red jackets and blue trousers;
2 - red jackets, but khaki trousers;
3 - khaki tunics, but blue trousers;
4 - khaki jackets and khaki trousers.

Almost all puttees have been khaki, but I have seen, in one illustration, blue puttees.

Should everything be in 'jampot cuff' style by this point? My understanding is that around 1881, the earlier style of 'pointed' cuff was replaced with the 'jampot cuff' which lasted about 20 years and was then replaced with pointed ones again - but only on dress uniforms, as far as I can see.

Do any khaki jackets display facings? I've never seen any illustrated. In fact they don't seem to have 'cuffs' as such at all, and I've not noticed different-coloured collars.

I'm sure that with your help, I can crack this. Then I can get on planning my paint schemes...

Thanks for any replies!
« Last Edit: February 03, 2013, 08:47:07 PM by Red Orc »

Offline traveller

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Re: British officer uniform help - supplemental!
« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2013, 08:53:07 PM »
I think actually that the chap with the riding crop is supposed to portray Frederick Lugard active in:
Afghan War (1879–1880)
Sudan campaign (1884–1885)
Third Burmese War (1886–1887)

Offline Plynkes

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Re: British officer uniform help - supplemental!
« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2013, 09:22:18 PM »
Much more likely to be representing him in Malawi or Uganda, as it is from the Darkest Africa range, and he is dressed in such a filibustering, non-regulation get-up.

Offline Plynkes

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Re: British officer uniform help - supplemental!
« Reply #7 on: February 04, 2013, 02:01:31 AM »
I think you have it right there, Red. In 1881 the traditional regimental facing colours were done away with too, replaced with:

Blue: Royal Regiments
White: Welsh and English Regiments
Yellow: Scots Regiments
Green: Irish Regiments


At least some of the khaki uniforms had a "pointy" cuff, but there weren't facing colours just a seam, so it probably wouldn't show up on a 28mm figure unless it has been sculpted on. A painted black line to represent it would probably look too big and not look very good. So I would leave it off if the sculptor has too.

Offline Red Orc

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Re: British officer uniform help - supplemental!
« Reply #8 on: February 16, 2013, 01:47:05 PM »
Sorry, completely missed the latest bits on here somehow.

Thanks both of you for the info on Frederick Lugard, he seems a very interesting chap. I shall have to incorporate him somehow into what I'm doing.

On cuffs, facings and whatnot, one of the regiments I'm doing is a Royal Regiment - the fictional but plausible Royal North Surrey Regiment (from the 1939 film of the Four Feathers, set during Kitchener's Expedition in 1895, but I think I'll have my Royal North Surreys at a slightly earlier period) - and as it seems impossible to convey that 'Royal' status in khaki, I think I'll do them in red jackets with their 'Royal' blue facings.


Offline answer_is_42

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Re: British officer uniform help - supplemental!
« Reply #9 on: February 16, 2013, 03:38:47 PM »
I think you have it right there, Red. In 1881 the traditional regimental facing colours were done away with too, replaced with:

Blue: Royal Regiments
White: Welsh and English Regiments
Yellow: Scots Regiments
Green: Irish Regiments

Although how far these were implemented is questionable. I recall reading somewhere that 'The Buffs' (3rd, East Kent) were particularly opposed to the change and may have fought in Egypt in 1882 in their old facings. Alas, I do not have the source with me so can’t check this.

Ah, the obscurities of military uniforms. Wonderful stuff. lol

Edit: by 1914 the change in facings had been almost completely abandoned, anyway.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2013, 03:42:08 PM by answer_is_42 »
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Re: British officer uniform help - supplemental!
« Reply #10 on: February 16, 2013, 04:03:12 PM »
Oh please, don't start now on the discussion which regiments were allowed to keep/return to their original facings when and why or which amalgamated batallions still kept them etc  ;) ;)
please please  lol

Offline Red Orc

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Re: British officer uniform help - supplemental!
« Reply #11 on: February 16, 2013, 04:20:41 PM »
Well, this is the 'Colonial Adventures' board - that kind of thing is just as important to Colonial players as whether an aeronef uses a Cavorite Shell or Gravetic Repulsor Beams is to VSF types.

I believe the Buffs were the first regiment to be given their old facings (because they used to 'buff' their white facings anyway) while the 'Dirty Half Hundred' (now the Royal West Kent Regiment?) couldn't get their black back because they'd gone blue. Or something.

And as it seems reasonable to assume that officers might have slightly more up-to-date kit than the men under their command, I'll not be too bothered about the discrepancy between the earlier soldiery and the later officers.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2013, 04:31:47 PM by Red Orc »

Offline Red Orc

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Re: British officer uniform help - update 1st March
« Reply #12 on: March 02, 2013, 02:15:32 AM »
On which subject - a WIP shot (for those don't sully themselves with the VSF board) of officers and troops from two units - the majority are from the (ficticious-but-plausible) Royal North Surrey Regiment. I'm not sure who the others are to be frank. Some regiment in khaki. Both are (for a VSFer) 'straight' - no steam-tech, no galvanic weapons, just guys in pith helmets carrying rifles across Africa (or sometimes Atlantis).



Captain Carruthers here is sporting a non-regulation jacket, with large pockets. He knows a very good tailor in Mombasa who ran it up for him, a very clever chap, and in fact, he recommended that Lieutenant Pootling-Twelp get one from the same fellow...



More pics over at my VSF blog - http://redorcsblog.blogspot.co.uk/



« Last Edit: April 02, 2018, 11:19:11 PM by Red Orc »

Offline fastolfrus

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Re: British officer uniform help - update 1st March
« Reply #13 on: March 02, 2013, 11:56:30 AM »
Just an observation, but noticing that you seem to undercoat in black, we tend to undercoat our redcoats with red oxide car primer for a really bright red finish.
Makes them look a bit parade-ground new recruitish, but put a black undercoat unit alongside and they look like faded veterans.
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Offline Red Orc

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Re: British officer uniform help - update 1st March
« Reply #14 on: March 02, 2013, 01:01:08 PM »
Thanks for the tip - I shall perhaps try that for the next lot of redcoats I paint up. I do have a brighter red for highlights, this is only the basecoating, so they should look a little brighter by the end of the process, but all suggestions as to how to get them to look better (other than, 'pay someone else to do it!') are always gratefully received.

 

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