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German Don Cossacks Balkans 1944

DML 1/35 German Don Cossacks Balkans 1944 Kit First Look

By Cookie Sewell

Date of Review March 2010 Manufacturer DML
Subject German Don Cossacks Balkans 1944 Scale 1/35
Kit Number 6588 Primary Media 132 parts (128 in grey styrene, 8 etched nickel)
Pros Another new set of cavalry figures; different choice of nationality Cons No material included for reins or stirrup straps; no rigging instructions
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) $11.95

First Look

The Don Cossacks were an independent lot but made the mistake early in WWII of siding with the Germans against the Soviets. Alas, when the Soviet Army took back the Donbass (Don River basin) things did not go well for the Cossacks. Worse yet, those who surrendered to the Allies were sent back to the Soviets; to this day there are a number of arguments as to whether it was right or wrong, as the Soviets immediately shot all Cossacks who were repatriated.

DML has now produced a set of two Cossacks in the combined dress they wore in German service - traditional Cossack caps and trousers with their sabres, but wearing a German field blouse with Cossack insignia. The figures are new but the horses are from their 8th SS Cavalry Division "Florian Geyer" set (No. 6046) and are backed up with two generic German sprues (the “A” kit sprue and the “A” weapons sprue).

Each Cossack comes in six base parts (head, torso, legs and arms) with a separate cap. A third horsehead is included to create the picture shown on the box art of one Cossack standing on the ground checking his mount’s bridle (the other figure is mounted).

While nicely etched nickel two-piece stirrups are included, DML has not provided either any material to make reins or stirrup straps or rigging directions. These are essential for a mounted figure, and it is a shame they did not include anything of that nature. As a result, this set is best for someone used to rigging horse figures and who has a supply of favorite material (lead foil, 0.005" styrene, or other thin material for straps) and knowledge of how to install it.

Artwork is by Zgonnik and is of the “stick here and follow the box art” type of directions.

Overall this is a beautifully molded kit but let down by not being complete.

Thanks to DML for the review sample.

Sprue Layout:

  • 6046 15 Two horses and basic furniture
  • 6588 27 Two figures and basic kit
  • GA 64 German Generic kit - helmets, canteens, mess kits, entrenching tools
  • WA 18 German Generic weapons - 2 x Kar 98K
  • MA 8 Etched nickel