Japanese warrior "Ashigaru", (Verlinden)

This is a 120mm historical figure from Verlinden (kit #0802) title "Japanese Warrior Ca.1600". Base on history reference, this warrior (simplified armour) look more like an Ashigaru rather than a Samurai class.

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History
Ashigaru literally means 'Lightfoot', non Samurai foot soldiers during Japan medieval period. At first most Ashigaru were runaway peasants who had joined an army in search of loot but by the end of the period in 1600 most Ashigaru were trained professional soldiers.

Although often forgotten they played a key part in many of the battles of Japanese history most notably "Battle of Sekigahara" in 1600. Much like their infantry counterpart in Europe the importance of Ashigaru was greatly increased as new weapons were introduced, in the case of Japan the long spear which almost became the same length as the European pike and the use of arquebus (early firearm).

The kit

The oriental warrior is posing tightening his head band. As usual, this Verlinden kit separate in several parts attached to resin casting blocks (I hate these blocks). The head, arms, torso and legs are separate components...

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He is wearing greaves for legs protection and breastplates (note: the real thing is made of lacquered hardened bamboo... NOT metal) with an engraved samurai family emblem as identification on the battle field much like the heraldry on the european knight. Although the body armour is a simplified version, but the detail of the lacing on the skirt plates are good.

Arm with 2 Katana (sword), long and short. Both weapons are separate by scabbards and handles which will end up on the belt. A small plain resin base is provided.

My initial idea of conversion is to alter both hand to hold a scratchbuild Yari (spear), a Jingasa (conical hat) on the head and a Sashimono (small banner) on his back...