Zorndorf 2018 Update

Updating the plan

I have not had a great deal of new work to post since returning from Thailand, but I am still advancing on this project.  Currently I have another 4 regiments of Russian Musketeers and 6 squadrons of Hussars nearing completion.    I am past the 50% point on this project, but there have been some hiccups in the organization of the units. 

4 More regiments of Russian Infantry on the painting desk

There seems to be some fairly specific numbers provided for the Russian Strength at Zorndorf.  Using these values, I modified the current project plan to better reflect the forces present.  Overall, I am representing one ~1300 man Regiment on a single 120mm base, and a ~600 man (5 squadrons) cavalry regiment with 2 60mm bases. 

The published numbers I have seen for the Prussians reflect fully manned regiments, where attrition would reduce the actual numbers. Especially in light of the Prussian forced march in mid August prior to the battle. The diminished sizes of those units might have accounted for the historical outcome as well.  
Starting work on the Russian Dragoons
Base coating complete on some Russian Hussars

Where the challenge comes in for the Russians is with the Observation Corps and numbered Grenadier regiments.  The units have reported strengths averaging about 2000 each.  I though about representing these using large units under the Honours of War rules, but went fielding them on 3x 60mm bases each, which would is allowing me to field the Line Grenadier Regiments as six separate units for the battle.  The additional stands could serve as combined grenadier battalions for other scenarios in the future.  This is going to require me to rebase the 2nd and 4th Grenadiers and will necessitate painting another 60 grenadiers. 

The Observation Corps grenadiers will probably just be on 2 60mm bases as the were closer to regimental size (~1600 pax), I still have not solved the larger problem of sourcing these figures as Eureka and Blue Moon have not added them to their ranges.

Another change to make is with my Curassier's.  I originally painted up six stands of Curassier to represent three of the four regiments present. However, the Novotroitsky and Kazanskiy regiments were still wearing Dragoon uniforms at the time, so I will need to replace them.  I am currently leaning towards painting my Blue Moon Dragoons in winter coats as standard dragoons, and doing these two regiments using the "Summer" uniform to help distinguish them. 

This changes the overall project objectives to:

  • 4 x33 figure Grenadier Regiments  (60% complete)
  • 1x 23 figure Grenadier Regiment (0% Complete)
  • 16x 23 Figure Line Regiments  (60% complete)
  • 4x 33 Figure Observation Corps Musketeers (50% complete)
  • 2x 12 Figure Cuirassier Regiments (Complete)
  • 2x 12 Figure Dragoons in Summer Dress (0% complete)
  • 2x 12 Figure Dragoons in Winter Dress (10% complete)
  • 1 x 12 Figure Horse Grenadier Regiment  (Complete)
  • 5 x 10 Figure Hussar Regiments (40% complete)
  • 8 Artillery Batteries (1 gun w/ crew and limber) (80% complete)
  • 1 Corps Commander  (Fermor) (Complete)
  • 5 Division Commanders (Gaugreben, Saltykov, Galytsin, Browne, Demiku) (Complete)
Still a rather daunting task overall, but I am roughly 50% of the way there.  There other challenge in this task is in building the Prussian OOB.  Historically we know that the Russians were ill led, but doggedly persistent in the battle.  The Prussians claimed victory, but it appears to be more of a tactical draw.  Is this due to parity in strength and capability or were the Prussians more affected by their long road march than the chroniclers let on?


  1. Good to see you back at work on the project! For OB, I tend to count the number of battalions and squadrons present rather than actual men. I figure a battalion averages about 600 men while a squadron averages about 150 men. If the OB warrants adding or subtracting a BMU or two from the OB due to actual strength, that is ok. With the Russians fielding 56 foot battalions having 39,000 men, that averages to 700 per battalion. When you factor in the larger grenadier and Observation Corps battalions, the average strength likely approaches 600 men/BMU. Same holds for the cavalry with 4,950 troopers in 50 squadrons. That is about 100 troopers/BMU. Perhaps reduce the number of squadrons to account for these understrength squadrons. The cossacks fielded 3,200 troopers in 7 regiments. Maybe figure 21 or 22 cossack squadrons?

    With the half-scale (or double scale depending upon one's perspective) we have been fighting HoW battles, the Russians will need to field 28 foot BMUs, 12 BMUs (two stands each) cavalry, and 5 cossack BMUs (two stands each).

    1. Based on the history, I am intentionally leaving out the Cossacks. They did not appear to contribute to the actual battle, but rather in the shaping operations leading up to the battle.

  2. I'd say you're nicely on target for the project!


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