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Author Topic: It's mats all the way down  (Read 1084 times)

Offline Burgundavia

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    • Coreyburger.ca
It's mats all the way down
« on: June 14, 2021, 04:19:59 AM »
So I'm creating a new mat for Sellswords and Spellslingers, complete with the the numbers of the side. I discovered the font that S&S uses is publicly available, so the mat will even have numbers that match!

A few months ago, while at the hardware store for more caulk, I found some Transparent/Clear acrylic caulk. So I grabbed a tube, thinking I could try it for making rivers or water in general.

I also own a 3D printer, so wanted to print a cobblestone texture roller to do a cobblestone road.

Lastly, I have been carrying around parts of two older mat projects for years - one done on the floor puzzle pieces and one on a large canvas mat, the latter since cut up into several smaller mats. Here is a photo of the older, foam mat in action:
Near the end now by Corey Burger, on Flickr

Offline Burgundavia

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    • Coreyburger.ca
Re: It's mats all the way down
« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2021, 04:29:45 AM »
First up, a whole bunch of caulk tests. I wanted to do river or stream with water in it

I tried seeing what the clear caulk looked like over a bunch of different paints, and if I could tint it with burnt umber or raw umber inks.
Here it is wet:
Clear caulk test 1 - wet by Corey Burger, on Flickr
And when dry:
Clear caulk test 2 - dry by Corey Burger, on Flickr

Overall, the ink didn't work. The colours did lead my mind to future mats of lava or acid pools, however.

Second, I tried blue and green paint, plus the first attempt at putting rocks in the stream bed. This one failed too. The paint was too opaque. And putting the rocks in the undercoat caulk meant they got covered with the clear caulk, so overall this was a failure too.
Clear caulk test 2 - dry by Corey Burger, on Flickr

Third test I decided to try and so some texture in the riverbed. I chose a camel brown as the dirt colour and put both small rocks and gravel in the underlying caulk. But this riverbed ended up too shallow, as the caulk does settle some while drying:
Clear caulk test 3 - riverbed by Corey Burger, on Flickr

Offline Burgundavia

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    • Coreyburger.ca
Re: It's mats all the way down
« Reply #2 on: June 14, 2021, 04:37:00 AM »
And now to cobblestone. I 3D printed a cobblestone roller on my Ender 5 (https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3623845) and then set about to see what I could make. And like the stream, I failed horribly the first try:

Failed roll 1 by Corey Burger, on Flickr

What went wrong here? Lots - I didn't thin the caulk with isopropyl alcohol, I spread it on unevenly and then I had it on wax sheet as I wanted to peel it off.

I have lots of experiments and the beginnings of the mat to share, but will post those in the next few days. If you want more details about any of the above, ask away.

Offline CookAndrewB

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Re: It's mats all the way down
« Reply #3 on: June 14, 2021, 07:41:37 PM »
My experience with paintable (acrylic) caulk is that whatever you are adding texture with needs to be wet. I did a number of roads and then used lego tires to add some tire markings. Wetting the tires throughout the project really helped. It appears to me that the caulk stuck to your roller. Thinning the caulk might make it too fluid to hold shape.

Oh, I also think I gave the caulk a while to rest before texturing. Let the surface dry out a little bit, but hit it before it sets all the way through. If memory serves, this was about 30 minutes of dry time before texturing.

Offline Burgundavia

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    • Coreyburger.ca
Re: It's mats all the way down
« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2021, 02:03:20 AM »
Ya, 30 minutes or so is needed. Less if you have isopropyl, as it seems to make the surface form faster

Offline Diablo Jon

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Re: It's mats all the way down
« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2021, 11:58:37 AM »
It's fun to experiment even if doesn't always work. With regards to the clear caulk and water effects I seem to remember Geek Gaming doing something similar on one of his YouTube videos he got pretty good results if I remember correctly. On one of my gaming mats I used PVA glue and toilet roll to make a water effect.


Offline Mick_in_Switzerland

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Re: It's mats all the way down
« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2021, 12:12:03 PM »
@Diablo Jon
That looks really good  :-*.

I will try that (one day)  lol.

Offline Burgundavia

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    • Coreyburger.ca
Re: It's mats all the way down
« Reply #7 on: June 17, 2021, 07:31:04 AM »
It's fun to experiment even if doesn't always work. With regards to the clear caulk and water effects I seem to remember Geek Gaming doing something similar on one of his YouTube videos he got pretty good results if I remember correctly. On one of my gaming mats I used PVA glue and toilet roll to make a water effect.


Is that flexible? That is a key aim for me - a mat I can roll up

Offline Diablo Jon

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Re: It's mats all the way down
« Reply #8 on: June 17, 2021, 08:43:29 AM »
Is that flexible? That is a key aim for me - a mat I can roll up

I've had no problems  rolling  the mat up for storage since I made it. It is only six months old so maybe one day but so far so good. I put flexible caulk down  first, then a two layers of tissue ( loo) paper and PVA glue, then I manipulated the tissue paper, while it's still wet, with a house paint brush to make water ripples,  I painted it in acrylics and then added two layers of high gloss varnish. The whole water area is like rubber now. 

Offline Burgundavia

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    • Coreyburger.ca
Re: It's mats all the way down
« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2021, 02:46:58 AM »
Onwards to more tests! This time, I was successfully able to get the cobblestone texture roller to work. I ended up adding a lot more isopropyl alcohol to the mix, which made it smoother and easy to roll.

overall, I quite like this texture roller, but using them on caulk is very difficult. You must have an even layer of caulk and the timing is crucial. The caulk needs to be wet enough to squish, but not wet enough to stick.

Offline mikedemana

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Re: It's mats all the way down
« Reply #10 on: June 23, 2021, 05:27:29 PM »
That last painted river looks awesome! Great perseverance!!

Mike Demana
http://leadlegionaries.blogspot.com/

Offline Burgundavia

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    • Coreyburger.ca
Re: It's mats all the way down
« Reply #11 on: June 23, 2021, 05:56:49 PM »
The first piece ended up too flat - the caulk by its nature flattens out a bit as it dries, so the lovely texture I put into it vanished. So I did a section piece that was thicker caulk, which worked much better. I also put more gravel and rocks on it. Overall, I was quite happy with this test pieces. Onwards to the real mat!

Offline Burgundavia

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    • Coreyburger.ca
Re: It's mats all the way down
« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2021, 10:08:49 PM »
Onto the border. I am planning on doing something like this old map - a sepia/brown border but with the same lettering as the Sellswords title font. My first attempt was not successful.

I 3D printed some borders and then stuck them down to the mat using tape and then put caulk over that. That part worked well.

After the caulk was dry, I used another 3d printed template as a paint mask. I've done this before with my test mat for a parking lot, but I glued the mask down and then airbrushed. For this I tried taping it down and then sponging it. Don't do that.

Offline Burgundavia

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    • Coreyburger.ca
Re: It's mats all the way down
« Reply #13 on: June 27, 2021, 04:24:34 PM »
With all my testing done, actually onto the mat itself. It will be 3x3, with a stream and a road that intersect at some point. So I stretch out some canvass on plywood using painters mat. In retrospect, I should have stretch the canvass better, as it is still loose in places. I then laid out the design for the mat using sharpies to plan it out.

I then grabbed some of my 3D printed buildings and laid out a bit of a village. The inn in the centre is from Z1 Design and I got it as an add-on to a kickstarter a few years ago. Most of the rest are from Dadi Dungeon Patreon. Well worth subscribing to his patreon if you don't already. I also cut out bits of the saved mats to be the larger parts of the grass areas of the mat.

After a few hours of printing, I had a full set of borders printed, so I laid those out on the mat and taped them down. Then I filled the space with caulk coloured with linen craft paint.
« Last Edit: June 27, 2021, 04:26:20 PM by Burgundavia »

Online Codsticker

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    • Kodsticklerburg: A Mordheim project
Re: It's mats all the way down
« Reply #14 on: June 29, 2021, 08:12:52 PM »
This is a great project to follow. It is actually very helpful to see where you were unsuccessful as well as your successes.

 

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