Saturday, June 27, 2015

Sectional Terrain: A river will run through it and past some trees

 The river received it's first coat of paint -a bit of tan along the edges then some green and lastly some navy blue in the center.  I use Liquitex craft paints from Dick Blick Art Supply for big projects like this.  It's important to work in small sections (6-8 inches) to ease the blending of the edges.  I like to use a standard paper plate as paint pallet.  They're cheap, the wax covering prevents paint from being absorbed and the raise rim allows you to cover it with plastic wrap to preserve any color you've mixed up for a few days.  Once the paint has dried (approx 48 hrs) I'll pour the epoxy to cover the river in 1/4 inch of the material.  Pouring epoxy if always a bit nerved wracking as once it goes on your done - it's very hard (really impossible) to recover a section from a bad pour.  I use a two part resin called "Magic Water".

 Next is a set of close up shots.  First up is the 2x2 river section.  The "ford" area has an extended sandy section to make it stand out a bit more.  I've also started to dress up the river banks with some scenery materials to make the less bland.

 The left side of the 2x4 river panel.  I added a rocky bluff which will be painted once the grout / white glue "mortar" sets.

 Lastly, the right side of the river.  Sorry for the dark photo - some idiot was standing in from to the lighting (me!)

 I will be adding lots of plants along the rivers edges but have learned to do so after the epoxy sets.  Epoxy has a tendency to creep up edges (about 1/16th of an inch) which looks fine for river banks but doesn't for vegetation so I've learned to add these after it's hardened.  Pictured is my way of making reeds - clip them together as shown, trim off the bottoms and add a thin line of white glue. Once its dried I get two more popsicle stickily them along the top, move the clips up and the cut off the glued section.  I'll get 4 row of reeds out of this batch of material.  I then cut each reed "strip" into sections to glue on the board.

 As an aside, I did use some "drying" time to assemble and paint two packages of the new Renedra cross and rail fencing.  It's a fantastic product (each package provides 18" of fencing in 4, 4.5 inch sections.

 There is a decision to make on the fords - should I add rocks or not.  I made some simple "boulders" out of pink foam scrap and placed them in the fords - remember they will by surrounded by 1/4 inch of epoxy so will not appear to standout as much.  A few of the rocks will even be submerged.

What do you think - please add a comment if you either like them or don't.

 Another shot of the ford on the big river board.

 Here's the potential ford on the smaller board

Next up are some forrest plates.  I had a single piece of 2x4 hardboard in the shop which I needed to use for both my naval game terrain (the larger pieces) and to make forrest plates (smaller, rounder pieces) - I didn't waste much of the material:

Work stopped late last night.  The forrest plates have had the tree stands attached and have been covered in the grout/white glue mixture.  once that dries - the sections will have some nice texture that is literally rock hard.  I went out into the yard and grabbed some twigs to use as fallen logs.  The tree's will not be glue as I want players to be able to remove them to facilitate play and also for transport.  I'm using the standard Woodland Scenics ready made trees.

Some of the tree plates have some scenery materials - these are older versions that I'm redoing.

Also pictured is the scenery fro the naval game (the pieces with exposed pink foam "hills").  Those will get done over the next few days.

Whew- that's a lot of progress but I need to get cracking as I've really only got next week to get all this done for Historicon as I've got a business trip out to SF the following week!  I still have to start the roads!


Tom Young said...

Very nice work!!


paulalba said...

This is lovely to see, hard to imagine how to do this kind of stuff without seeing how others do it, thanks!!!

Stefan (aka. Monty) said...

Wonderful progress.