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Author Topic: Building Better Boards  (Read 7647 times)

Offline Andym

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Building Better Boards
« on: February 23, 2015, 05:06:25 PM »
Myself and my brother were at the Model Rail Scotland show on Saturday past. Ever since, I've trawling through model rail forums and tutorials. Its made me realise there's a wealth of stuff out there that would help us all be better terrain/board makers, but its knowing where to find them and the ones that give the best advice.

So this is what I'm hoping this thread will be about. Anybody who finds a tutorial or a walk through and thinks 'I never knew about THAT!' I'm hoping they post a link on this.  Be it blogs, websites or even our own beloved LAF, anything that inspires you to go that one step further and try and make your tables better!

I'll start with this. Its a link to a model train website. The stuff on there about building trees, hedges, simple things ( I originally thought were simple, but I'm clearly proven wrong here) like grass, to water effects and buildings. I reckon if I applied this guys theories to my own wargames stuff I could make it waaay better!!

http://www.009.cd2.com/members/how_to/topography.htm

Edit to mods: I hope I've put this in the right place. The 'How to...' section didn't seem appropriate due to not being full tutorials but links!

Offline Captain Blood

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Re: Building Better Boards
« Reply #1 on: February 23, 2015, 05:22:56 PM »
What a great idea.
Having been to Miniature Wonderland in Hamburg last week, I am very inspired by model railway quality standards!
I've always believed wargamers could learn a lot from the love and care (and techniques and materials) railway modellers put into their miniature landscapes.
Then again, for many wargamers, it's still all about the game - a few books for hills and a bit of green baize are quite sufficient.
Not how I see the world - and not what many of us here on LAF aspire to. But for some people, it seems that's what they like...
But building better boards is a great aspiration for my money  :)

Offline duhamel

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Re: Building Better Boards
« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2015, 05:24:54 PM »
exact one learns a lot with railway modellers. my father was one, and I learned a lot by reading the reviews.(loco revues) but it is a bit old, it has had to evolve since my childhood.
“Le courage consiste à avoir peur mais à continuer tout de même.”

\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\" The courage consists in being afraid but in continuing all the same. \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\"

Offline Andym

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Re: Building Better Boards
« Reply #3 on: February 24, 2015, 08:04:40 AM »
I also think the guys that do the scale model military dioramas have a lot to offer us, although sometimes they can spend TOO ling doing one thing to perfection!

Offline Constable Bertrand

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Re: Building Better Boards
« Reply #4 on: February 24, 2015, 09:09:16 AM »
Great resource Andy!

I dont have anything really to add, I'd just like to see what comes along, but Massive Voodoo has some great tutorials and ideas.

Like using wase electronic waste!
http://massivevoodoo.blogspot.com.au/2010/01/tutorial-building-base-with-parts-of.html
And realistic Spiderwebs!
http://massivevoodoo.blogspot.com.au/2011/12/tutorial-realistic-spiderwebs.html

Cheers
Matt

Offline von Lucky

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Re: Building Better Boards
« Reply #5 on: February 24, 2015, 11:00:08 AM »
Found this during the build something process:
http://www.009.cd2.com/members/how_to/nouaillier_a.htm
- Karsten

"Imagination is the only weapon in the war against reality."
- Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

Blog: Donner und Blitzen

Offline Nysse

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Re: Building Better Boards
« Reply #6 on: February 24, 2015, 12:30:10 PM »
Model railway enthusiasts really have some amazing terrain building skills! Lot to be learned from there. I find quite a bit of the ready made stuff for model railways if both of higher quality and cheaper than anything made for wargamers.
Chronicling my fight against a growing lead pile with some occasional gaming: Engineered Gaming

Offline Daeothar

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Re: Building Better Boards
« Reply #7 on: February 24, 2015, 01:19:38 PM »
Model railway enthusiasts really have some amazing terrain building skills! Lot to be learned from there. I find quite a bit of the ready made stuff for model railways if both of higher quality and cheaper than anything made for wargamers.

Absolutely! I've taken to buying cheap N-scale buildings from Japan for my Dropzone Commander table. They're waaay cheaper than the resin things offered by Hawk games and usually even cheaper (and certainly a lot better looking) than the laser-cut offerings.

Also, the only source of hobby materials over here is a single model railroad shop, which also offers scale model kits, plasticard, paints etc. So my ideas and purchases are automatically influenced by those sources. I've found some of the scale modeling magazines especially interesting (and I agree; those rivet counters are anal lol ).

I've taken to always browse the isles for anything interesting I can use or repurpose. Too bad they'll be closing down next month. Then it's either the local GW hell store, or the interwebs...  :'(

A couple of years ago, I've bought a scale terrain making dvd from a guy who makes dioramas, scale train landscapes, museum pieces, replicas of buildings etc, on which he shows many of his techniques. The results are simply stunning and I've taken many of his tips to heart: David Wright's website

'He who stumbles around in darkness with a stick is blind. But he who sticks out in darkness is...fluorescent'

Painting Goal for 2018: 100 miniatures - Tally per 08-02-2018: 8

Offline Dewbakuk

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Re: Building Better Boards
« Reply #8 on: February 24, 2015, 01:40:55 PM »
I have several model railroad books that I use for reference and it's a wonderful area for sourcing tools. :)

One caveat though when looking through railroad pieces and 'how to' guides, remember that they are intended for static displays. Same for dioramas, they aren't intended for gamers to roll dice on or push figures around on.
So many projects..... so little time.......

Offline Daeothar

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Re: Building Better Boards
« Reply #9 on: February 24, 2015, 02:13:42 PM »
One caveat though when looking through railroad pieces and 'how to' guides, remember that they are intended for static displays. Same for dioramas, they aren't intended for gamers to roll dice on or push figures around on.

Exactly. Therefore to me, the ultimate modeling is creating terrain that is both as realistic and visually pleasing as possible, while at the same time being sturdy enough for use in games. And preferably with a functional interior as well.

It's why I've shied away from using foamboard and foam in general so far; I'm not convinced those materials are rugged enough to survive many battles (and still retain their looks). Same goes for cardboard actually (seems like I only trust plastic(ard) and MDF as basic building materials... ::) ).

Offline Andym

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Re: Building Better Boards
« Reply #10 on: February 24, 2015, 07:08:46 PM »
Constable-that spiderweb tute is great! Those guys at Voodoo know there stuff!

Von Lucky-Great minds think alike. Thats the same bunch of guys as I posted in the my first post! ;)

I tried using their theories on a test patch of grass. I made a quick and cheap static grass applicator out of a couple of bits of rubbish. Its not electrified so it doesn't make the grass stand directly up on end, but I like it.

Applicator...





And here's the results. First I painted and highlighted the ground...

 

A layer of pva glue...



And this is what I could do with what I had in the house. I'd like maybe different colours of grass to use...



Definitely room for improvement still!
« Last Edit: November 24, 2017, 08:29:01 AM by Andym »

Offline Normsmith

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Re: Building Better Boards
« Reply #11 on: February 24, 2015, 07:49:56 PM »
Superb thread. I have recently visited a (new to me, but well established) model shop, primarily aimed at rail enthusiasts and have found some excellent products, which cross over well between the two hobbies. My best find so far is a 1/72 windmill by Dapol.

Offline SotF

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Re: Building Better Boards
« Reply #12 on: February 25, 2015, 01:52:22 AM »
As a major warning about using a lot of the railroader techniques, there are a lot of them that are extremely, visually impressive but don't hold up for wargaming.

Pay attention to the materials and consider ways to up durability because with gaming terrain, you are going to be handling them a lot unlike a lot of railroad layouts that will largely be untouched in comparison.

Offline Andym

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Re: Building Better Boards
« Reply #13 on: February 25, 2015, 02:00:32 AM »
Good point! Well worth remembering SotF!

Heres another great tutorial. Such a small detail but so well done. Corn stalks.

http://www.warfactory.co.uk/wp/2015/01/05/corn-stooks/

Offline SotF

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Re: Building Better Boards
« Reply #14 on: February 25, 2015, 08:42:27 AM »
Good point! Well worth remembering SotF!

Heres another great tutorial. Such a small detail but so well done. Corn stalks.

http://www.warfactory.co.uk/wp/2015/01/05/corn-stooks/

I'd wasted so much money early on thanks to a hobby store that used to be around, it specialized in trains and had a few things for other use...so many things that looked cool, but did not hold up well there such as some riser hills that pretty much shattered on me mid game...

 

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