Saturday 8 June 2013

Swiss Pikemen c.1494-1509

Swiss Pike Block

Following on from my last post here are some pictures of the completed first half of the project. The Old Glory Swiss or Reisläufer  pike block. There was quite a lot of conversion work involved but I am really happy with the result. As I mentioned before I think these converted figures are perfect for the early part of the Italian wars, from the French Invasion in 1494 up until Agnadello in 1509, however when mixed with other figures I will be happy to use them to represent the Swiss for slighlty later. The fashions changed rapidly in this period and they definitely would have dressed more flamboyantly by Marignano in 1515 though their fashions never became quite as outrageous as their rivals, the Landsknechts. 
As normal the banners are from Petes excellent cloth flags and represent Berne and Uri. There are also two TAG Italian figures in the block who have been converted to represent a drummer and captain. I think these are my favourite conversions of the lot. They are shown in the 4th photo below.
The final photo is of two of the old style Foundry Landsknechts that I am converting into Reisläufer. These are the only two I have so far painted, I have another 22 to do, some of which still need conversions. When finished they will form the front of the pike block and being dressed more flamboyantly with some in later styles of armour will help to bring the block into the 1510s and 1520s. I am going to paint them in slightly less garish colours than the Landsknecht with a few white crosses on some of them to make them feel more like the Swiss mercenaries than their German neighbours. I was pleased with the first two although I do feel the figure with the turban on to whom I have added a beard looks slightly biblical!
Reisläufer Pike Block

Reisläufer Pike Block

The pike block from behind

Reisläufer Command

Reisläufer Command

The first 2 figures completed for the attacking front rank


  1. So far looking very nice.

  2. Wonderful and redoubtable! Great pictures, nice work on the feeling of power of this kind of unit...and fantastic flags too!

  3. Oli, I really like what you've done with these especially the Reislaufer captain with the double handed sword. I'm gonna to have to have a go at making one of them.


    1. Cheers Pete, its a pretty easy conversion. The hand is the hardest part. I think the sword was from Mirilton:

      The head is Perry miniatures and I simply removed the halberd from one of the Old Glory ones you stick on the arm, leaving just the hand, and then glued this on to the arm at an angle before adding the sword.