Befreiungskriege 1813-14

Painting and modelling 28mm Napoleonic wargaming miniatures

Surviving first contact

Posted by Martin on December 3, 2012

Greens for the BfK Limited Edition Figures: front view.

Greens for the BfK Limited Edition Figures: front view.

Greens for the BfK Limited Edition Figures: rear view.

Greens for the BfK Limited Edition Figures: rear view.

German strategist von Moltke’s famous aphorism is often simplified to “no battle plan survives first contact with the enemy” but that doesn’t seem to diminish it’s relevance to many areas of life. And it’s just proved its accuracy once again in relation to the BfK Limited Edition Figures project.

As you can see from the pictures above, I have some very good news to report about progress on the project. Peter F. e-mailed me over the weekend to say that the greens for the four figures were complete and that he’s now ready to proceed with making the master and production moulds, which will quickly be followed by casting up the figures.

However, to get things to work well, Peter has had to make a few adjustments to the originally planned poses. All these tweaks are minor and don’t impair the vision for the set of figures but I think it’s only fair to draw your attention to them.

Firstly, the most obvious change is that the drummer is not resting his foot on the drum but rather simply standing behind it. That’s just an oversight that it was too late to change. Notice also that the flaps of his covered shako are tied up. At one stage we were looking at having them down but Peter’s view was that this would detract from the figure. Peter also notes that the drummer has a tufted pompon and full epaulettes. These distinctions were not specified by the 1812 regulations but all sources we checked agree that these were disregarded and tufted pompons and grenadier epaulettes remained standard issue for all gunners.

The two train drivers wear the Bardin regulation uniforms with the 1807 sword belt which could be worn over the shoulder or round the waist. They both have covered shakos as the train drivers had a special shako plate and it would have required hours of extra work to do this.

The fusilier figure is more or less as in the Knotel illustration except that Peter has made him look a bit more like a forager with his shako in his right hand full of some foraged items (potatoes). Peter has also given him a sack tied to his back pack. This nicely leads into the back-story for the vignette that Peter had in his mind while sculpting: the forager is returning from a foray and is trying to find his regiment. He stops by a camp fire to ask directions and is pointed towards his regiment by an artillery drummer who has stopped for a chat with a couple of train drivers of his acquaintance.

A camp fire you ask? Yes, and this is the most significant way in which the original plan has altered. While working on the set, Peter realised that it would work better if it had a focal point. With that in mind, Peter has sculpted a rather nice camp fire centrepiece with a “marmite” canteen on the boil. I’ve decided that I’d like to extend the set of figures to include this additional item but it’s important for all of you who have placed orders (or intend to place orders) to be aware that this makes a difference to the price which increases from £4.50 per pack to £5.50 per pack. I hope that those of you who have already placed an order will be happy to upgrade to the slightly bigger pack at the slightly higher price but I will understand if any of you now wish to withdraw. If you do wish to cancel you order, please contact me ASAP so that I can adjust the number of packs we cast accordingly.

I’m updating the project’s page to reflect these changes.

Finally, I’ll now be contacting all of you who have placed an order with final details of the price including shipping costs and the method of payment. My plan is to send out e-mails covering all these detail during the course of this week.


16 Responses to “Surviving first contact”

  1. Jason said

    The greens are looking great Martin! Although I’m personally not interested in 1813 French, I’ve been excited to see your project move along and what possibilities it might eventually led to in the future. I certainly wish you the best of luck the rest of the way and appreciate how you’ve included your readership in every step of the process. Good stuff!


  2. Paolo said

    Greens are gorgeous, I think the little difference is not a problem.

  3. It’s all looking rather splendid Martin. I’m still keen to get my original order.

    von Peter himself

  4. Jeffrey Smith said

    Martin and Peter,

    I’m more than happy with my original order plus campfire. The greens are outstanding…..imagine if they were Prussians!


  5. Atelier-Robin said

    The look gorgeous!. Looking forward to getting hands on them!

  6. plancenoit said

    superb figures no problem with price or adjustments

  7. Burkhard said

    Boy these are sweet! And yes, I am willing to pay the extra GB£. Really looking forward to these!

    BTW.: I got to tell you that I nominated your blog for an award the other day. 😀

  8. Kawe said

    That’s exactly what interests me. Brilliant.

  9. Looking forward to my figures and camp fire.

  10. Rob Kenny said

    Fantastic figures, just as I’ve come to expect from Calpe. I’m looking forward to receiving them, campfire and all.


  11. Campfire is a nice addition. No problem with the added cost for my two…

  12. Rob Piercy said

    These are outstanding and I cannot wait to have a pack. Keep up the most excellent work gentlemen.

  13. ryko26 said

    Hi, I’ve only just seen these, they look fantastic – can I buy them?

  14. Peter said

    Martin They look great and the campfire centrepiece is perfect—Im still in 😉 Peter

  15. Helen said

    Thank you Martin. Miniatures look great and a well done to Peter. Payment sent.



  16. Helen said

    Have received my miniatures, thank you Martin. The miniatures for the period are very very nice. Great detail and I can’t wait to paint them in due course. Cheers,


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