Terrain

Scenery2_crater1

While finishing up my Grey Knights I managed to knock out some more terrain. The first to be completed were two moonscape craters from GW. The set has a total of five, so I started applying glue to the edge and dusted with a sand mix to smooth out the transition. After that I primed and airbrushed all five with the base colors. And last, just some dry-brushing and  highlights. Real simple. The only problem with these was the warping of the models. From what I hear they all come warped. I’m sure there’s a way to fix it but I was too lazy.

Scenery2_crater2

Now that I have added a DreadKnight and a Stormraven to my army, I’ve been having the urge now to create some line of sight, tall, blocking terrain. I’ve seen these type of rock formations done a variety of ways and I opted for a very quick solution. Basically I chopped up a bunch of small pieces of insulation board and glued them together. I cut slices horizontally, based and painted, with my NEW airbrush, and dry-brushed. Gonna need to make more of these.

Scenery2_rocks1

Scenery2_rocks2

A while ago I printed out some more templates for buildings. Three of each to be exact (these were the same as the ones in the previous post). So the images below are of one building I created from 3 sets of one template to make a temple like building. I mounted it on a single piece of 3/4″ insulation board and glued it to masonite board. This was done exactly the same as the previous ones. Only exceptions were the steps and insulation board base.

Scenery2_ruin1

I’m super happy with the way this came out. Glad I spent the extra time on the floor, I think it’s what sets this piece apart from all others. I just used extra cereal box cardboard in 1″ squares, painted every other one white and applied multiple black washes to it.

Scenery2_ruin2

Scenery2_ruin3

It’s been quite some time since last post. Been busy with so many things from hurricanes to hobby progress, this is gonna be an epic post with lots of pics.

Early October I was able to get out to the Warstore Weekend. I had mixed feelings about this show as it was not what I expected. Large gaming space unfortunately the main section was for Infinity, Warmachine, Flames of War, etc. 40K was located in a larger room down the hall in another section all together. My sole purpose for the event was just to scout it out and see what a gaming convention is like. The quantity of gaming going on was quite a lot and just popping in I was a little intimidated. Everyone seemed to know what was going on. Maybe because I came late and missed an introduction or something it seemed like just a bunch of games going on with some pretty awful scenery. Except for the 40k tournament, which had plenty of nice terrain. I did enjoy the vendor area unfortunately, there was only one vendor. And the swag bag was a nice touch.

Not sure I will be back to the Warstore Weekend but I will definitely be looking for another 40k event.

Since that con, I finished my table and began the creation of my gaming surface but never finished it. So from about November to late December I spent some time here and there getting them finished. For the surface I cut 2″ insulation board to 2′x4′, sanded, based and flocked it. I used the tutorials created by Terrain Templar on YouTube. I highly recommend this guy for tutorials on scenery. The only issue I had was where he demonstrates the spreading of flock to a glued surface. Mine started clumping so I just set up some large scrap paper on the floor, glued the sections of board, and used the shaker to apply a generous covering of flock. After that I tipped the board this way and that to spread the flock, and let it sit over night. Finally, lifted the boards and shook of the excess on to the paper. Collected the extra flock and applied a second coat of glue to seal the flock. Overall it took about one shaker of flock and and 2 16 oz. bottles of scenic cement.

Let me start by saying that I began this hobby shortly after high school and during that time options for scenery were pretty slim, as well as tutorials (this was around 2nd edition). So my group and I amassed what we thought was a pretty  good selection. Some tree/forest pieces, a couple of polystyrene packing corners (ruined and painted of course), and a few hills. As time went on and editions passed, my group and I moved on and bounced in and out of the hobby as well as apartments, so it’s safe to say our terrain had seen better times. Now that I have found my self back in 40k and playing on a regular basis, I found pulling together what was left, and although we kept it as best we could, the pieces wore down faster when we started to use them again. Slowly the field became bare.

Shortly after my table was finished I started some foam core scenery based on the STCs from Confessions of a 40K Addict. Here are some WIP pics as well as final pieces of the tower, ruins, and single story ruins. Here I also applied flock to tie it in to the surface same as mentioned above. I didn’t capture any pics from assembly but the first one is the primer stage and the second is first pass with a grey based coat. I tried to go light and allow for some shading but once I started I realized I did it all wrong. Instead of priming it in black I should prime in white and spray black into the shadows, then I would just apply an even coat of grey allowing me to blend the shadows nicely. Oh well. Noted for next time. To finish the pieces I dry-brushed the grey over the whole piece and edge highlighted some parts.

Side-by-side with the ruins I also freestyled some forest terrain pieces. You can see one in the 2nd WIP pic of the ruins. These were super simple. Just a little masonite as a base, cut an organic shape. Sculpted a few rock bases (pink foam), sanded, painted, flocked (like above), added some trees, and BAM! You got some terrain. Still need to finish one though.

For christmas I got a hot-wire foam cutter and just for some practice cut up some blocks of 2″ foam. Again I applied the Terrain Templars techniques. These were completed over the course of 3 weeks, spending a little time here and there. I wasn’t too concerned about how these came out as they were super easy and took little effort.

Basically this is all the new scenery that is finished. There are still 2 pieces that are unfinished but I think there is enough now so I can get back to painting my Knights. I should have part three of my Grey Knight army progress up in the coming months. In fact, now that I think about it, I may do a 3a and 3b because it’s gonna be another big one. I’ll leave you with a final pic of the whole table.

I’ve dreamed about this moment for a while now. Gaming from the comforts of my home. I’m one step closer now. Over the past months I have been planning on building a gaming table for my home. Fortunately I have some space to put a table specifically for this. Below is a brief tutorial and plans for how I built this thing. First off I must warn anyone that wants to build this thing, it wasn’t cheap and although I planned for it, I still ran into problems along the way. I’m not making excuses but I was kind of under a time crunch. Having only a few hours here and there proves to be a key ingredient for errors.

Step 1: Planning

Probably the most important stage. I thought I planned enough but once I started I just followed though and for the most part didn’t make any changes to my original design. I did hit a few stumbling blocks which caused me to make minor alterations. Here is a list of the tools and materials used as well as a PDF of my plans. Please feel free to download or print. The plans were created in Illustrator CS4 so feel free to open and edit to suit:

Tools used:
• drill
• phillips bit
• circular or chop saw
• 3/8″ socket/crescent wrench
• 2 saw horses
• #8 countersink drill bit
• 1 1/8″ speedbor bit
• Finishing nail gun
• Compressor and hose
• Palm sander

Materials used:
• #8 – 2 1/2″ Wood Screws, qty: 32
• 3/8″ – nuts and 6″ bolts, qty: 16
• 3/8″ – washers, qty: 32
• 4x4x8 railroad ties (non-treated), qty: 2
• 2x4x8, qty: 8
• 1x8x8, qty: 3
• 2′X4′x.5″ MDF, qty: 3

Some specifics on the materials and tools used.

Step 2: Building the Frames

After I took several trips to Home Depot and Lowes (where I purchased my supplies) I started building the table by cutting 2x4s for the upper table frame, as well as the 2x4s that sit in the middle of the frame and act as a bridge for the gaming surface. It’s important that these bridge pieces are centered to ensure that whatever you use for a surface is evenly supported. In this case I plan to use 3 2′x4′ insulation boards (but I’ll get into that in a future post).

Top table frame with close up of the counter sink holes used to connect the frame.

The top frame was created by 2x4s and if you look close, the screws I actually used were a star bit for the head. This is because I wasn’t paying attention to the screws. These are not necessary, what is most important is that you use wood screws. In fact, using wood screws can even allow you to skip using the counter sink bit. After the 3rd hole the drilled bit broke so I just screwed them in with the screw gun. Worked just as well. Also note how the centered 2x4s are laying, flat and flush to the top of the frame. This is ultimately where the surface will sit.

Side of frame, bridge assembly. Note that the frame as it appears on the left is actually upside down in the photo.

After the top frame is completed, I built the bottom frame, Which will also act as a shelf for storage. First, I use 2x4s like the top frame but after building them and screwing up the measurement I had to rebuild them. This was ultimately the best thing as I realized that using 2x4s for this part was a bit of an over kill, so I went with 1 1/2″ x 3/4″. This would allow for more clearance between the lower level and the floor. It’s also cheaper.

Step 3: Legs and Height of Table and Assembly

Once the upper and lower table are created, next is to cut the legs from the 4×4 ties. The size of the legs is completely up to you however a standard table (from floor to surface) is around 32″ and I went with that. When I created the legs I ended up screwing that up too. Not cutting them but drilling the holes. At this point I was fed up with making things perfect so I just took some left over 2x4s and screwing them together to make a 3.5×3 block (note that 2×4 is not the actual measurement as a stud is typically short by a half inch). So the legs are complete. Next, I drilled a 3/8″ hole into the top of the leg through to the side of the top frame and counter sinked the head of the bolt and washer. This is extremely important when it comes to adding facia to the top frame.

I used 3/8″ nuts,washers and bolts to attach the legs to the top frame. Now that my pieces are complete (top frame, bottom frame, and legs), I brought them to the basement where I would do the final assembly. Of course you could build it all in one place but in my situation, I would not be able to get it in the basement completed. After I disassemble then reassemble the legs for transportation, I measure my desired hight the lower level sits off the floor and attach it using the #8 wood screws. If all your measurements are correct and your house is pretty level, this should be level too. Just to be safe, I used my level.

Assembled table with close up of counter sunk bolt in leg and upper frame.

Step 4: Finish Work

So the bottom frame is on and everything is secure and level. Now for the finish work.  All finish work was secured with a finish nail gun however, you can always just use screws. In order to make the surface of the bottom level I used 3 2′x4′ MDF sheets, ideally I would have used one sheet and and made 2 cuts but I don’t have the room in my SUV for an 4×8 sheet, nor did I have the time to schedule a friend to help me out. It’s best to go with one sheet as there will be less cuts and it’s less expensive. I had to cut all three sheets to fit, stopping each one on the center point of each stud.

To finish out the frame where the gaming surface sits, I used the 1x8s, measured, and cut the sides to a 45 degree angle. So this next part all depends on how high your surface will be. Because I want a 3/4″ reveal (or a dice stopper), and my surface (insulation board) is 2″ in depth I measured from the to of the board down 2 3/4″, made a mark, and lined up the mark on the 1x8s to the top of the upper frame. Do that on each end of the board and this ensures that your reveal is consistent all around. See why you need to counter sink?

Fully complete table with finished frame for gaming surface and lower shelf for storage.

Final Thoughts:

That’s it.  Nothing else to add other than, if you rush, you screw up. Take your time and think about what you want to do, get your materials and tools and remember… if you do screw up, there is always a way to fix it.

Now I know my writing sucks and there might be some unclear parts to this tutorial (hence the visuals), so if there are any questions, please comment below and I will respond.