Jun 25
HLJ : Luke

Are Ukrainian Horses the Best?

Taking a break from tanks, I thought I’d liven up my modeling a bit by building some horses.

There have been resin and white metal horse kits in the past in 1/35 scale, but there hasn’t been much available in injection-molded plastic…until now! I’m happy to say there is now a pretty good selection of regular injection plastic horse kits available from many manufacturers. I’ve recently completed a vignette depicting a Soviet Cossack cavalry attack, which motivated me to start building other cavalry figures, too. So, in this installment of my blog, I’ll take a look at some injection plastic horse kits that have been recently released (picture 1).

horses

Zvezda (Russia)
These are the horses I used in my Cossack vignette. The kit was released over ten years ago, but it’s still an easy to find kit, and unique in that the horses are in very dynamic running poses. The proportion and posing of these horses are fantastic, lending themselves well to a variety of scenes. The following pictures show the three horses I used in the vignette, already painted and ready to add to the scene (pictures 2, 3, 4).

horses

horses

horses

Master Box (Ukraine)
This very active maker from the Ukraine is well known for its fantastic figure kits, and also offers some wonderful horse-based kits as well. Current offerings include a set of two horses pulling a cart (picture 5) and two horses from the US Civil War (picture 6). Although these relaxed poses don’t have the power and impact of the running Zvezda horses, the Master Box horses feature excellent proportion, and look very good. Here I’ve replaced the Union Officer with a Cossack on a Civil War horse to create a scene inspired by Soviet films, showing a young Russian girl handing a flower or maybe a refreshing beverage to the Cossack on horseback (picture 7). I’m still thinking!

horses

horses

horses

Dragon (China)
Dragon has also long offered a Cossack on horseback kit, as well as some newer releases. One very interesting new release depicts Don Cossacks in German service in the Balkans during 1944. These new Cossack figures feature unparalleled detail, with excellent proportions, but the horses in the kit are from the older release, unfortunately (picture 8).

horses

Tamiya (Japan)
These two horses are from Tamiya’s veteran German Field Kitchen kit. The recent re-release of this kit replaced the two horses with cook and soldier figures, so the horses are pretty hard to find these days. The horses are a little on the large size, but the proportions and posing are great. One horse depicts a Percheron draft horse, making the original kit even more valuable (picture 9). I really hope Tamiya re-releases the Field Kitchen kit with the horses, too!

horses

So there’s a look at a variety of injection-plastic horse kits from several manufacturers. I get the impression that Europeans have a special familiarity with horses, and in particular the Russian and Ukranian manufacturers, coming from cultures where horses can be an integral part of daily lives, much more so than here in Japan! Maybe that’s why those manufacturers can produce horse kits that seem a little more natural.

Well, that’s it for this blog installment. Still haven’t decided what’s up for the next installment…I might put the finishing touches on that Cossack vignette, or maybe I’ll build a tank or military vehicle of some type…we’ll see what I come with!
See you next time!

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