|DRAGON - German Don Cossack|
A look at the latest figure set from Dragon!
German Don Cossack
Manufacturer: Dragon models
Material: Styrene & Photo-etch
Serial Number: 6588
It's difficult for those of us that grew up with the Iron Curtain to imagine that during the second world war there were many groups of people that we recognise as being from the USSR that were in fact anti-Russian at that time. The Don Cossack was such a group. Although there were many Cossacks within the German Armed forces, the Don Cossack, i.e. those that had originally settled along the banks of the Don, were by far the largest group. We should remember that for the most part, such groups saw themselves as fighting against
The Kit Contents
The box contents consist of four sprues of grey styrene, plus a tiny etched fret of aluminium or nickel.
The sprue that holds the parts to assemble into the two horses have been released before in figure set '8th SS Cavalry Division Florian Geyer' #6046. Another of the sprues is a 2nd Generation weapons set, containing two Kar98 rifles plus a selection of five-round clips of ammo, and a choice of two bolts. A third sprue consists of a wide selection of 2nd Generation personal kit, including gasmask cylinders, canteens, flasks, helmets, and entrenching tools.
The fourth sprue is completely new. We're given two new figures representing Don Cossack's, plus on the same sprue we're offered a new alternative head for one of the horses, so that the position of the horse as shown on the box art can be modelled, i.e. with the horse rearing to the left and being held by a standing figure.
Moulding-wise, the only flash to be found is on the figure sprue strangely? I say strangely since this is the 'newest' sprue in the kit. It's not heavy, and will be easily removed, but it's definitely not something I've come to expect on a new Dragon tooling.
If you're at all familiar with the horses from their previous incarnation, you'll know that they're a nice easy build, but do require a little work. For example, the large veins shown in the pictures below could do with reducing a little, and the mane on both needs a little work to blend in properly. I was told in another 'life' that the anatomy of the horse's teeth was wrong too...but happily they're on the head that gets swapped in this set. Each horse has its body in two halves, with a one-piece head but a separate part being slotted into place to represent the ears. The saddles too are separate.
The figures are really nicely moulded...apart from that flash...the detail being sharp, so that a minimum of re-scribing is necessary should you wish. It's important to note, that although the kit box is marked as '2nd Generation', this refers to the weapons and personal kit, not the figures which can be considered normal injection-moulded examples. Each figure is composed of a main one-piece upper torso, with separate arms, legs, head and headgear. There are some fine cooling lines on the upper torsos that will need to be removed. The heads are a little blank-looking as far as their expressions are concerned, although one does come with a rather impressive looking moustache! Each figure is wearing a normal German tunic that can be easily adapted to represent other figures if necessary, although the red stripe down the outside of each trouser leg is actually moulded in and would require removal.
Each of the figures are supplied with a 1914 pattern Cossack Sword, and the headgear consisting of Cossack Papakha with stripes. Both figures have collar tabs and shoulder insignia of the XVth SS Cossack Cavalry Corps, which can be removed if the figures are put to a different purpose.
Another very nice figure set from Dragon that every Axis modeller should have in their stash! You just never know when they'll come in handy do you? Recommended!
My thanks to Dragon models for the review sample