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"Men with Shovels or Axes?" Topic

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robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP10 Nov 2019 4:32 p.m. PST

Can anyone recommend a source for British, French or US sappers or pioneers in 28mm? WITHOUT buying entire command groups? I'd like about six enlisteds and an officer per army to dig saps or demolish the Sittangbad Bridge--ideally, without spending $150. USD So far, all I've found is Essex and only French from them. I'm thinking I'm missing something obvious. It would not be the first time.

John Armatys10 Nov 2019 5:23 p.m. PST

Hinchliffe "25/28mm" (they are among the first figures they did in the early 1970s, so not as big as modern 28s) BN51 and BN52 in the Napoleonic British Infantry tab on this page link

They are wearing Belgic shakos, standing ready rather than actively working.

Add a British officer from the same range and keep the unit away from larger modern figures…

In the French Infantry tab there is FN 36, Guard Sapper – I've never seen this figure but an e-mail to them might give you an idea of if it is suitable.

Minifigs link have set 8
British Sappers and Miners (4 Piece) x1 £7.00 GBP. You get a bare headed man digging, a bare headed man resting on axe and men in Belgic shakos carrying a plank and a box. They are chunky 25mm. They also list BNX 1 and 2 – the photo in the link is obviously wrong, and these might be two of the figures in the set.

The French list link also has some sappers – the photos of the individually listed sappers don't look promising, I'm afraid I don't know what you get in Set 7.

Skeets Supporting Member of TMP10 Nov 2019 6:59 p.m. PST

Triangle Miniatures has a sapper in the Steve Barber line (

Rakkasan Supporting Member of TMP10 Nov 2019 7:15 p.m. PST

Irregular have a British sapper listed, LBN19, in their 28mm Napoleonics Line.

Personal logo Artilleryman Supporting Member of TMP11 Nov 2019 1:33 a.m. PST

Black Hussar have some French assault pioneers in armour. The Perrys have some French pontooneers who can be painted up as pretty much any nation. Warlord have French engineers wielding tools but are more suitable for assaulting positions during a battle. Empress Miniatures have some useful figures in their NZ Wars range. I also have on my shelves some figures from an ACW range depicting pontooneers at work in shirt sleeves but I cannot for the life of me remember the source (i.e. check ACW ranges as well).

Hope that helps.

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP11 Nov 2019 3:52 a.m. PST

Thank you all. I ran six lines last night before I posted, including all the trendy modern stuff. What I get for neglecting the classics.

IronDuke596 Supporting Member of TMP11 Nov 2019 5:02 a.m. PST

For American pioneers Knuckleduster has them with axes, shovels and saws.

advocate11 Nov 2019 9:25 a.m. PST

Can't help thinking of the Airfix Afrika Korps set (the original one). Maybe the chap with the spade, you could paint the cap as a shako?
Sorry, couldn't resist. ;)

Personal logo Flashman14 Supporting Member of TMP11 Nov 2019 3:37 p.m. PST

Warlord makes French engineers, two with shovels, there's a pick and an axe:


pbishop1214 Nov 2019 9:26 p.m. PST

I own quite a few 25MM British and French sappers, pioneers, etc with all the implements you mention. As I don't mix them in my 28mm units, their showing on the table is fine by me. Been using the same figures for about 30 years now.

pbishop1214 Nov 2019 9:27 p.m. PST

Sorry, meant to mention they are Minifigs

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