28 May 2011

Siberia Miniatures

This is both a review of some products from, and an endorsement for, Siberia Miniatures. This will also be a guide to how to pay for your order as that could turn into an adventure of its own.

http://siberia-miniatures.ru/

Let’s begin with Siberia Miniatures, it’s a Russian store run by a gentleman named Michael. I first ran into his stuff over at the Lead Adventure Forum, where he is well known and has good reputation.
Siberia Miniatures sells historical miniatures of various size, but mainly 28 and 54-60mm figurines.

Ordering from Siberia Miniatures , if you are not prepared, could most likely scare you off. PayPal doesn’t work in Russia and there is no way of paying with a credit card in the store. Instead you are given a couple of “bad” alternatives at which point I stopped the first time I wanted to order a miniature a couple of months ago.  The best alternative is Moneybookers which will be described thoroughly soon.

The range of miniatures is very good, lots of unique collectable large scale models, and ranges for Russian civil war, renaissance armies in 28mm. Though the main attraction is the range of 54-60mm models.  And that was also what I purchased from Siberia Miniatures, 3 renaissance miniatures. 1 Ukrainian Cossack, 1 Cossack commander that I will paint as Bohdan Khmelnytsky (leader of the Ukrainian Cossack uprising) and 1 Winged Hussar since I nearly get a hard on every time I see this unit. 

The models are crazy cheap, 7-9 dollars per 54mm model!  “In American money!?” as the guys over at WWPD podcast always say – which never fail to make me laugh.
And the models are made out of metal, high quality single piece castings. No flash, no air bubbles, and minimal amount of mould lines. The metal is really hard and does not bend. It blew my mind.  I dare to say these are the cheapest large scale metal models on the market. And some of the best looking models out there as well!

My expectations were exceeded, especially with the models being single piece, I don’t have to worry about flimsy parts such as the hussar wings falling off or bend.
So the models are 10 / 10.

Let’s talk about the barrier of placing an order.
Really, the best way of completing an order is to register a Moneybookers account. And I suggest you do that before placing an order at Siberian Miniatures to make things run smoothly.

Moneybookers is pretty much PayPal, but with more fail safes built into it. It’s also located in the UK so have that in mind when you transfer money.
Transferring money can be done through online bank transfer, bank transfer and through a credit card. The fee is acceptable. But you could learn from my trial&error in that you register your credit card and use your credit card to upload money to your Moneybookers account. When using a credit card you have the money wired over immediately.
If you use any kind of bank transfer it will take 2-5 bank days!

Using a credit card will show up in your moneybookers history, using a bank transfer won’t. This may make you panic (I did) and think you just lost some money into cyberspace. But as I said, the money will take a few bank days to transfer properly. The same goes for withdrawals, even when using “withdraw to credit card” option”.  It may sound daunting, but I hope my description and experience of using that option will make it easier for anyone trying it out for himself.

Once you registered your moneybookers account, registered your credit card and transferred cash to it, it works just like PayPal. You type in the email address of the receiver and leave a message. Money will transfer to the other persons account pretty much immediately.
Now, Michael, the owner of Siberian is a good guy – and does what any e-shop should do.  Keep you updated over email.  You will get receipts, emails of confirmation when the money are over on his Moneybookers account AND he will email you again when he posts the parcel. He will post it as “recommended” and you will get a code. It will be some sort of Russian FedEx handling it in Russia, but you can track your parcel in your home country once it arrives there using the tracking number.

Shipment for my order to Sweden was 2 weeks.

Be aware that the shipping cost is 15 USD when shipping outside of Russia. Consider the parcel being sent as recommended and taking the cheap price of the miniatures into account (and the updates) it is still very much worth it unless you are only after 1 single miniature.

So I have only good things to say about Siberia Miniatures. Let’s support this guy by climbing over the obstacle of ordering and paying with moneybookers. If he gets his shop up to speed (it’s still fairly new) maybe he’ll add other options for payments. He also has a 28mm Great Northern War range in the pipeline (saw a sneak peak on the Swedish subforum of Lead Adventure Forum)

5 comments:

  1. That Polish Colonel is fantastic...great job on the colors

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  2. Thanks, that particular model is from "M Models" and just used to compare size and quality of castings with the very limited 54mm collection I have at home :-)

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  3. My interest in 54mm has certainly increased in recent years. Those look like superb models.

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  4. They are, they are so damn well cast that you could use them as shelf decorations without painting them!

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