Posts Tagged ‘scratchbuild’

At a Slug’s Pace

April 10, 2012

Despite the name our humble Slug Industries keeps producing more gaming goodies at a reasonably fast pace producing as it does a model a month on average. The latest is the Art Deco House above, which I’m glad to have finally finished as it’s been a slight horror show from begining to end. Being designed to fit into our old vacuum chamber with just milimeters to spare was difficult enough, but the original idea was for the windows to be cast thin enough to be poked out, however with such a thin mould wall this proved difficult when combined with the actuality of casting resin a milimeter or less in thickness. After a bit of discussion of this over at GWP the general feeling was how this wasn’t really needed. So I thickened the walls, made new moulds and here’s the result. All that remains is to go and mention it on all the best forums, but I imagine on LAF I’ll suffer some random thread derail which will make it all worthwhile.

We just noticed how our humble Fred wasn’t ever listed on the Slug Industries site so we’ve sorted that out, a surprising oversight especially as we’ve sold quite a few of these.

Weed it and Reap

March 12, 2012

The latest Jihadistani model is this walled garden. The walls are the usual foamboard mock-plastered with filler. The plants are plastic aquatic ones, but spaced so that figures can get between them. With the more usual gaming trees that’d damage them, but the flexibility of these allows for some movement.

The world’s worst bricklayer has paid a visit to put these supporting pillars at the gate, a welcome piece of detail for a building like this as they’re typically quite bland.

There’s also a hole in the wall in one corner with most of the rubble on the inside. A handy entrance, exit, or just somewhere to take a sneaky shot from.

In another corner a few poppy plants, seeded by the wind I imagine. A straitforward little scenic but it adds a splash of colour to an otherwise dusty scene.

Once You Poppy You Can’t Stoppy

March 6, 2012

Due to the poppylarity of my home grown opium here’s a stalk-by-stalk guide to making them yourself. I did talk about making them in the previous post but for our hobby cousins who don’t have English as their first language, like say the Americans, a photo how-to demolishes any linguistic barriers. Above is a pin and you’ll need around one hundred of these for a small field. It’s nickel plated brass which means it won’t rust. They’re made in Poland for the Hemline range and you’ll probably want them in various lengths so your field doesn’t look like a row of Guardsmen on parade. The sequins and beads you’ll need should also be available from your local haberdashers.

Then you have to bend, kink and manipulate the pin to give it a more organic look. You can do this with strong fingers but a small pair of pliers make it both quicker and easier. I did leave a lot straight on my first field, but I think these look better. Be careful though as around one percent of these pins snap, which is also why you do this bending first.

Then slip on a small glass bead, hold it near the sharp end and add a tiny dob of superglue under the pinhead. Slip the bead up to under the pinhead, hold briefly and then onto the next one.

However if you want flowering poppies you glue on a concave sequin before the bead and glue it in place. Again it’s quicker to slip the sequin on, hold it near the sharp end, apply glue and then slip it up the shaft.

Then slip the bead on to the shaft, apply superglue to just under the sequin and put the bead in place.Once dried apply a couple of rings of superglue around the shaft. Typically I do a small one near the top, and a broader one at the bottom. Then apply your flock, preferably a long fibre one. Irregularity is key in replicating nature so don’t worry if some have very little flock and some a lot – if all else fails the sparse ones can always go in the middle of the field.

Repeat the above steps a few times and then you can spray them en masse. The flowering ones will need to have the flowers painted by hand. Bear in mind how Opium poppies are not red like the domesticated variety seen in Europe, They’re typically pale pink. For making into fields I attach thin strips of cork to an MDF base, add filler to make it look more like a field, and then both glue and stab the pins into the cork. Try to vary both the angle and spacing so it look more agriculturally pleasing.

Should you like the look of them, but don’t fancy making them I could be persuaded to make some for you, but they won’t be cheap.

 

Top of the Poppies

March 5, 2012

With both modelling and gaming the views of friends and family often veer towards them believing we’re a bit special, but not in a complimentary way. Occasionally that gentle misnomer devolves into a raised state bordering between simple insanity and being found fiddling with a farmyard animal. This project was one of those for me and my family, askew looks, whispering, and pledges of not mentioning it to anyone outside of the immediate tribe. That aside I’m now the owner for a very nifty looking opium poppy field – but be aware its for personal recreational use only.

Firstly I made a trip to the haberdashers for pins of several sizes and some small glass beads which could be slid on to the pins. These were then superglued to the heads of the pins to make the stalk with it’s capsule and the pin head as the crown. For the few flowering ones I sandwiched a sequin between the bead and the pin head. Once dried I ran two or three bands of superglue around the shaft of the pin and flocked it with a long fibrous flock. These were then sprayed and stuck into the furrows which are strips of cork glued onto an MDF base. A small amount of more flock around the base et voila!

mThere’s just shy of one hundred pins on this quite small field, but it’s a handy game prop and I may even make another – and then onto maize!

A photo how-to make these is available here.

 

Bazaar Enough

March 2, 2012

This was a very quick build using foamboard, filler, PVA glue and a few pins and  set on a piece of MDF to add a little weight.

For the shutter I scored the card on one side of a piece of foamboard, then peeled away the foam and bent the shutter to shape and doped it with a little liquid superglue.

For gaming simplicity the roof comes off, it could have been fixed but as you,  gamers, know that’s just asking for trouble when someone wants to get a figure inside or even forgets there’s a figure in there and it’s found a week later battered and bruised from being moved with a scenic.

One end is delicately ruined with plenty of room for figures, and a small hole in the wall for the occasional sniper.Although probably one of the simplest buildings I’ve ever made I think it’s a little cracker. I may well add open shutters to the other shops because it’s a small detail which brings it to life.

Hovelly Versatile

February 29, 2012

The great compound building spree starts to grind to a halt as all three near completion, spurred on by me discovering Channel 5’s “Royal Marines: Mission Afghanistan” on demand via the Xbox and boring the whole family with episodes back-to-back, leaving them feeling like they’ve done a tour themselves but in a single Sunday.

My idea was to cast a building several times and in laying it out differently make a village which didn’t look like a housing estate. Having managed a trio to start with I must admit the roofs done this way is not as good as the way I did it before.  Not sure why I changed style, some half-arsed idea about doing seperate roofs for added variety I recall. It didn’t really work did it?

Roof problems aside I’m happy with how much this speeds up making compounds, as the walls are simple. Above they are made from foam board carved for irregularly,  boshed with filler and a light sanding

For this one I’ve added a dome on the roof, more of a gaming tradition than anything I’ve actually seen in photos.

The walls have been made differently on this one reflecting an observation on the different styles of Afghani walls. Many seem to have been made with large dried mud bricks, which is then rendered with a coating of mud. This often crumbles in places but the brick pattern is still slightly visible.

The effect has worked and was made easy by using Cork Expansion Gap Inserts, or strips of cork to you and me. I’ve seen these in Wickes for around six quid a packet, which as a modelling material is well priced. However my Domestic Goddess found me a pack in the PoundlandQuidKingdomNinetyNinePee shop and there’s miles of it. Hurrah for marriage!

I’ve then cut these to brick size and laid them into walls, taking care to make the walls based on the brick size to keep it simple.Then the usual rendering with filler and a light sanding.

This is the final one and I fancied something a bit different, so it’s set on a slight mound, has a smaller yard and the gate is on the corner with a few steps down. One corner of the roof is missing and there’s a small hole in the rear, ideal for snipers.

It also has the bricked walling which blends fairly well with the more regular irregularity of the building’s wall. It has a fair amount of height to it and therefore more variety.

Together this trio works well, so I’m looking forward to putting them down with the other four. I have one more casting in hand at the moment but having started a wrecked market from seeing one on  Royal Marines: Mission Afghanistan”  it’ll just have to wait.

There’s some small detailling left on these but I got so excited with them I couldn’t wait to post them up. A feeling I imagine you share.

In for a compound in for a penny

February 27, 2012

This humble Middle Eastern abode is very much a work-in-progress,  hopefully another Slug Industries product soon, borne from my desire to have a few more compounds from reading about the Royal Anglicans time in Afghanistan in book “Attack State Red”. The reports of inter-compound fighting reminded me of fighting in Stalingrad, which explains why Sangin has earned the nickname “Sangingrad” amongst our brave forces.

For a good skirmish game you do need to get inside the buildings, hence the lift off lid. I’m happy with the scale as the rather fine Eureka figures shows it’s a good fit. There’s three of these on the bench, which will take me up to seven compounds in total, which is just enough for the game I have in mind. The others can be seen here.

Here’s one in place for it’s fitting of walls. These are foamboard, which is very easy to work and they’ll get a coating of filler to get an irregular finish. The other two will be cork, as I’m after a certain effect on those which you might be lucky enough to read about later. Bet you can’t wait, eh?

You can see how these developed here.

 

Trench Afoot

February 16, 2012

Gutted as I was to realise I’d already used the pun “Last Ditch Effort” I’m happy with this new secnic which I’ve just completed. It’s not only a handy piece but it proved to me how our humble Slug Industries sandbags and planking actually knock together to make a decent model without the hours I’d have spent in the past by hand making every single piece.

It also gave me an opportunity to use modrock, a bag of which I’d bought around a decade ago but never even opened. It’s a great material, gloriously messy with a hint of mudpies making the endeavour an even deeper recession into child-like joy. To start with I glued the sandbags in place, then used scrap foamboard to make formers for the ground. I wanted the look of earth which had been dug up and piled just a couple of months before, so quite smooth, howvere if you wanted more craggy a style that would be possible too. I overcoated it with Woodland Scenics plaster, or wotsit hydrocalifornia as they insist on calling it. It was great fun and I recommend it for that reason alone, anything more is a plus eh?

Then it was a bash of colour prior to flocking. I used three types, short dark for the undercoat, longer on top with a few added sprinkles of a flowery flock. The planking was stuck in place, plus a few crates, an oil drum and some single sandbages which we’ve not released yet and the piece was complete. It comes alive with a few figures, these all Uncle Crouchie’s BEF range now available from the ever regal Warlord Games.

Finally the hour spents cutting the seams on all those sandbags and the grain on the planking has proved itself worthwhile now on with the slaughter!

Newsagent Provocateur

September 19, 2011

Many of you may recall the BUF propaganda wagon I made for Red Rich’s superb demo game of VBCW at Salute 2011. Each book or paper was an actual BUF publication shrunk down, printed out and folded to look like it does. So as unexciting as the image below looks here’s your chance to make your own for whatever you’re working on.

These also include a fine poster by a gent on GWP, and something I didn’t get around to using… the Moseley picture discs. I’ve also used these on bases, and hanging on a hook outside an outdoor toilet. There’s also a poster by GWP’s Bungle, which is one of only two posters by other folk I’ve ever used, it’s that brill. They’re totally free and you just have to click on the image above and save or print it.


Euro Militaire 2011

September 18, 2011

The Boy Slug, Captain Stinky, Daring Dan and myself descended on Folkestone for the annual Euromilitaire show. For those who don’t know it Euromilitaire is a big modelling show on the south-east coast of England which attracts many of our finest modelling cousins from mainland Europe as well as a few eager seppos. Along with some of the world’s finest models in the competitions, there’s a sizeable but quite expensive traders area (£9 models from Modelzone for £13, etc), but also far too many older men lacking in both manners and personal hygene. I imagine their mothers gave them the ticket money. Great models though and here’s my pick of the very best click on them for simply massive versions.