Befreiungskriege 1813-14

Painting and modelling 28mm Napoleonic wargaming miniatures

Posts Tagged ‘Calpe’

News trickling out from the Towers

Posted by Martin on May 1, 2014

Calpe pack P22: march-attack Prussian musketeers.

Calpe Pack P22: march-attack Prussian musketeers.

Calpe pack P23: march-attack Prussian musketeers, head variants.

Calpe Pack P23: march-attack Prussian musketeers, head variants.

After a hiatus almost as long as mine, the 2014 Calpe Towers release juggernaut is ready to roll. Peter F. has had to content with some rubber-related troubles over the last couple of months (sorry, I couldn’t resist that little double entendre opportunity) because his long standing supplier is no more. After trialling a variety of replacements, you can now expect new packs to start becoming available on the website very soon. Are they French, Prussian or Saxon? The answer is: all three!

The immediate focus will be completion of the French march-attack infantry set with packs for voltigeurs and grenadiers with their coats down followed by various command packs. Then there are some Prussian infantry march attack packs and a selection of Saxon infantry packs. Peter’s complete predicted order of priority for work is as follows:

  • Finish, the French march-attack set.
  • Finish the Prussian march-attack set.
  • Finish the Saxon advancing set.
  • Finish work on the French gunners.
  • Finish work on the Saxon gunners.
Calpe Pack S1: advancing Saxon musketeers with covered shakos.

Calpe Pack S1: advancing Saxon musketeers with covered shakos.

Calpe Pack S2: advancing Saxon musketeers with calfskin shako covers.

Calpe Pack S2: advancing Saxon musketeers with calfskin shako covers.

Calpe Pack S3: advancing Saxon musketeers with uncovered shakos.

Calpe Pack S3: advancing Saxon musketeers with uncovered shakos.

I think you should see some packs on the website later this week or early next week because Peter has been frantically taking pictures, photoshopping them and writing the blurb to go with the packs. Indeed, some of them already appear to be there! If I’ve got my sums right, there are three Saxon musketeer advancing packs (S1, S2 and S3 – not to be confused with the “old” Saxon packs) and a couple of Prussian musketeer march-attack packs (P22 and P23) already mustered for duty.

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Posted in Calpe Towers, Forward Patrol | Tagged: , , , | 14 Comments »

Brand new Calpe website

Posted by Martin on March 16, 2013

New Calpe Miniatures website.

New Calpe Miniatures website.

When Peter F and I first put together the Calpe Miniatures website more years ago that I care to remember, the fact that a wargames miniatures company (let alone one run by sole trader) had a website at all was something special in itself without worrying about what people could actually do with it. But time has passed and customer expectation has grown exponentially: more pictures, online ordering, more frequent news updates and so on…

Over time, keeping up with that has been harder and harder to do – especially since my “real world” commitments have grown and mean that I no longer have the time and resources to devote that the Calpe website deserves. For some time now, Peter has been exploring ways to solve this conundrum and the result is that we’ve moved the Calpe website to a new place with new functionality and new ways of keeping it up to date that will make life easier for Peter and better for his customers. It also means that I will no longer need to worry about looking after the website because the new one provides tools for Peter to do that himself.

The observant among you will notice that many of the older Calpe ranges are not on the new site. Fear not, there’s a plan for them. To quote from the introduction on the new site: “There [will be] a link to the old website where you can still purchase the old range of Prussian figures. From now on, the old range will be known as the ‘Calpe Veterans’, while the new figures will come under the title of ‘Calpe System’ figures.” That’s still being set up at the moment and I’ll let you know when it’s available.

Lastly, this doesn’t mean the end of my involvement with Calpe Miniatures and you can still expect to get advance inside information from Calpe Towers right here. The next report is likely to be in the immediate aftermath of Salute 2013 (if not sooner).

So go and emjoy the new site and all that it offers!

Posted in Announcements, Calpe Towers | Tagged: | 7 Comments »

Extending the range

Posted by Martin on February 24, 2013

This week I received the latest photos from the Calpe Towers workbench. There are no surprises, because these figures are in line with what I’ve been trailing for a while – the first of the march-attack pose French infantry packs and a couple of packs of legere command and officer figures that you can use with the existing route march packs to create light infantry battalions. Without further ado, on to the pictures. Enjoy!

F19: French light infantry command.

F19: French light infantry command.

F20: French light infantry foot officers.

F20: French light infantry foot officers.

F22: French march-attack infantry, uncovered shakos.

F22: French march-attack infantry, uncovered shakos.

F25: French march-attack infantry, covered shakos.

F25: French march-attack infantry, covered shakos.

I know I’ve been quiet on the posting front the last couple of weeks – a case of reality intruding on enjoyment, I’m afraid. However, I expect to get back to more frequent posting in the next week or so and I have several updates lined up for you.

Posted in Calpe Towers, Forward Patrol, French Infantry | Tagged: , | 6 Comments »

Taking shape

Posted by Martin on September 11, 2012

I was at Colours 2012 last Sunday. Normally, this would herald a show review style posting at some point during the following week replete, if you’re lucky, with examples of my dubious photographic skills. However, this year, no such report will be forthcoming. That’s the bad news… Now for the good news…

As usual, going to Colours was an opportunity to meet up with Peter F. and catch up with developments at Calpe Towers. I know quite a few of you keep asking about what’ll be next off the production line, so let’s deal with that before I move on to the main topic for today. As you might have noticed from my previous posting, some charging Prussian musketeer packs are the next thing we’ll be adding to the website. Following that, French march-attack infantry are due to go into production moulds and then attention will, I think, turn to French and Saxon artillery. Somewhere in the mix are re-modelled Prussian dragoons.

Over lunch (yes, the catering at Colours has actually improved at last), conversation turned to plans for the BfK Limited Edition set of figures. The main thing we achieved was to focus in on what I call the boundary conditions. In other words, the practical limits on the project that mean it won’t become a burden for Peter to the detriment of Calpe core activities. This was useful because we were able to establish three parameters that will inform the final choice of theme and figures for the pack:

  1. Number of figures: Peter is concerned not to let the project take up too much sculpting time. That’s his prerogative, especially since he’s offered to do the actual sculpting work for free. So this means that the pack will be limited to four figures.
  2. Fit with the Calpe range: we discussed a lot of the suggestions that you have been kind enough to make along with my own ideas and it emerged that several of them were things that Peter plans to do as part of the main Calpe range anyway, so we think it’ll be best to avoid those for this project. So the bad news is that things like Pommeranian national cavalry, casualty figures and the Saxon jaeger company won’t form part of this project; on the other hand, the good news is that these will turn up in the main Calpe range in due course.
  3. Make it special: the flipside of the previous item is that Peter’s keen to make the pack something special or unique or unusual. So that’s where the detailed head-scratching is now focussed.

Now, coming up with options for a “display piece” pack that fits the above criteria is actually quite easy. Almost too easy, in fact, and the trouble would be narrowing a long list down to a single final selection. But I still want to come up with a set that can also earn its corn on the wargaming table, and that makes the exercise more thought provoking. I spent all the journey home from Colours and most of the following evening reviewing candidate options and I thought it would be fun the “think out loud” here with you all. Below is a list of ideas that I’ve sent over to Peter F. to get his feedback. This by no means constitutes a final shortlist. It’s more of a discussion point along the journey. There’s plenty of time for things to morph based on how Peter responds and, indeed, on how you all respond to these ideas. So, here they are in no particular order:

  • A group of figures hit by a cannister volley. The Perrys have done this a couple of times for cavalry but I’m thinking more of an infantry group here. They might fit together well as a group based within a battalion. The nationality could be French, Saxon or Prussian but it would probably work best if it complemented one of the existing Calpe sets (e.g. the new charging Prussian musketeers).
  • A group of Marie-Louises taking refreshments from a cantiniere. They could be standing around and fairly ill-equipped. Some of the poses from Knotel Band XII Plate 24 could form the basis of this. I especially like the chap with resting his reversed musket between his shoulder and forearm. Little details like the cloth wrapped around the musket’s trigger are nice too. I’ve got this odd hankering to include a wounded figure with his arm in a sling as part of a pack like this.
  • A command group interrogating a prisoner. This gives an opportunity for a multi-national group and for the prisoner to be from an “exotic” unit.
  • A vignette based on a Knotel painting. There are probably quite a few options here but the one that sprang to mind was the painting of the incident involving “Crazy” Platen and the French lancer where the coup de grace was administered by a Lithuanian dragoon trumpeter using his instrument. Maybe you can think of some other candidates in a similar vein? One that I think has already been suggested is Johanna Stegen handing out ammunition to Prussian infantry at Luneburg.
  • An artillery crew of four figures doing something unusual that wouldn’t be covered by of the usual Calpe crew packs – for example, changing a broken wheel or moving a gun by use of a prolonge or the infamous bricole (if I could actually work out what one is!). This could apply equally well to French, Prussians or Saxons. There are also out-of-the-ordinary crew options to man guns already in the Calpe range: Russo-Prussian Legion, weren’t there one or two Landwehr batteries?
  • A group of cavalry troopers on scouting or picket duty. That could call for different poses possibly involving drawn carbines. Maybe even one trooper dismounted looking at tracks while his colleagues hold his horse for him. Again, this is derived from a suggestion made in an earlier comment.
  • A group of foragers/looters rounding up provisions from the unsuspecting local populace. The germ of this idea comes from a seemingly ever-popular set of Bavarian foragers done by Foundry.

So that’s a fair amount to sink your teeth into. Start chewing and let me know how it all goes down.

Posted in Announcements, BfK Limited Edition Figures, Calpe Towers | Tagged: | 13 Comments »