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HaT

Set 8219

French Light Infantry Chasseurs (Marching)

Click for larger image
All figures are supplied unpainted    (Numbers of each pose in brackets)
Stats
Date Released 2010
Contents 40 figures
Poses 4 poses
Material Plastic (Fairly Soft)
Colours Blue
Average Height 23.5 mm (= 1.7 m)

Review

A typical French light infantry regiment from 1808 consisted of four bataillons de guerre, each of which usually had six companies - one of carabiniers, one of voltigeurs and four of chasseurs. The chasseurs were like the fusiliers in the line infantry - the most common element and rated below the elite carabiniers and voltigeurs. In practice the differences in deployment were thoroughly blurred, but HaT have made a splendid job of depicting each of these light infantry types, and this set forms one of their sets of chasseurs.

This 'marching' set holds no surprises in terms of poses; everyone is marching. All the poses are perfectly reasonable, so it does what it says it does on the box. Having so few poses means you will not get the kind of natural small variation that a set with 12 slightly different marching poses provides, but the 40 figures in this set will still make a very acceptable column or line of marching troops. For other figures that might go with these poses see the complementary command set.

All these figures have the classic shako which was introduced from 1806, and the habit-veste that only began to be replaced after 1812, so these figures are appropriate for these six years. Everything about their uniform is correct, and has been very nicely done. The plumes and diamond plate are at the front of the shako, the habit-veste is fine and they wear breeches tucked into gaiters shaped to resemble hussar boots. There is nothing here to suggest any compromises for campaigning, so no trousers, shako covers and so on - everything is as per regulation (although there were many regimental variations). From 1808 these men were banned from wearing sabres, but this order was widely ignored, and everyone here has one, in a dual frog along with their bayonet.

Sculpting is very good indeed, with good clear detail and no flash. Every man has a peg on his back onto which the separate pack must be attached, and this join is so well done that it stays without gluing (although gluing is still recommended).

The splitting of this subject across three sets allows the customer to buy what they need without having lots of figures that they do not. It does mean you have to buy three sets to get all the poses, but we are in favour of this approach and think most will like having the choice.

There is nothing really to dislike about this set. It achieves its limited goals well and does it with great sculpting and perfect accuracy. Another quality addition to the legions of French Napoleonic figure sets on the market.


Ratings

Historical Accuracy 10
Pose Quality 10
Pose Number 9
Sculpting 10
Mould 10

Further Reading
Books
"Napoleonic Wars: Napoleon's Army" - Brassey - René Chartrand - 9781857531831
"Napoleon's Light Infantry" - Osprey (Men-at-Arms Series No.146) - Philip Haythornthwaite - 9780850455212

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