Sunday, November 24, 2013

4x4 Folding Desert Farming table Finished

An earlier post saw a folding 4x4 table built, but devoid of terrain except for the normal tabletop pieces I dropped in.

Nothing really awesome, but functional at least. This last week, I pulled all the stops, and built terrain into the board. First off though, I stained it. Here it is, sitting under a futon from my bachelorhood.

Threw some felt on the bottom to protect whatever surface it's sitting on, gluing it on with some 3M adhesive spray. Nvm the random pieces of terrain I have on top. All prototypes. They look good, but definitely prototypes.

It turned out pretty decent. The basis for it is half inch foam insulation that I brushed down with acrylic, then brushed in watered down glue at which point I threw on the ballast rocks. In the future, know that 1) The Acrylic is pointless, since you're spraypainting it, and does Not seal the foam against spraypaint, and 2) spraypaint before you add ballast so that you'll avoid the foam peeking through the rocks when they break loose as thousands of the millions you put down will.

Elevation, forests and a road. The hill was easy. More half-inch foam board, cut the edges every which direction and tear out random bits until it looks pretty beat up, seal, spraypaint, add ballast, dry brush. Tada.

The road was kind of the same concept. Drag something through in the direction of the road so that it rips up the foam, and then do it a lot. Eventually, you'll have a lot of ruts and rises and it'll look pretty beat up. Paint it dark brown (Or tan, depends on the road you want), add way more ballast to it than you did anywhere else, paint it again, wash it as best you can (I advise making your own wash, using walmart acrylic and a paint/water mix of about 40/60), then drybrush a little. Not a lot, but just some. The wash did most of the work, and unlike everything else you paint, gravel roads don't actually have any wear to them. The rocks shift, go away, whatever, so don't drybrush like crazy, just enough to highlight them a little bit in the sunlight.

The forests, I basepainted in some dark brown (Walmart stuff, not the good paint.) then stabbed a bunch of little trees I got at hobby lobby. They were on sale, my wife made fun of me, and we've used them in everything. Our Nyss have them, Taryn has one, they'll be in a lot of places. JTT Scenery Products, apparently, is the company we got them from. We've used maybe a third of the trees that came in the package, and we've used about 20 trees. Well worth the like, 6 bucks I spent on it.

After you've poked the trees in and glued them, I scattered in a lot of Red Pepper flakes from Walmart's seasoning aisle. The other two ideas were more expensive terrain-dedicated options, or crushed eggshells and food dye. This was way easier than eggshells and cheaper than the other option.

The dock was constructed out of craft sticks from walmart, washed and drybrushed for the mud. The little grass tufts you see here and randomly throughout the board are from Army Painter. The water effects are from Hobby Lobby. 90% of any dedicated terrain products we grabbed for the table are from Hobby Lobby. They've got a daily coupon online that will get you one product, any product, for 40% off. That takes 20$ water effect bottles down to around 14$ with tax. It takes Air Compressors and Air Brushes way down, it helps with regular brushes, paint modifiers, you name it. It's awesome.

Anyways, make sure you seal where this water goes! I didn't do it right the first time and assumed the elmers would get it all (Normally it would, but there were some serious gaps), and happily, the felt soaked all of what drained up, and not my carpet, but heads up.

The little water pump, and piping is plasticard or plasticard piping from Hobby Town (not Lobby, gasp). The basis of it was one of my wife's bead cylinders that I repurposed and added edges and exhaust to. The paint is bronze stuff from Vallejo with pigments added in on top. The goal here is for the water pump to pull water from this resevouir, irrigate the little field, and then dump what's left back into the irrigation drainage pit to be sent back into the resevouir.

Speaking of fields, this be it. I dragged a row through the foam, then came back in and cut at an angle on both sides, then sanded the whole thing to get rid of the rough edges. There's used tea grounds in there, used coffee grounds, and a little bit of dark green turf as well. Turned out ok. I didn't want it to be a field in the spring, but rather, fresh after planting, or maybe late fall after the havest has been done for a few months. I would have loved to have had dried cornstalks up everywhere, but that's completely impractical for wargaming. As it is, it functions as rough terrain.

I love this pool, I could care less about the pad. I don't like how the tile turned out, and you can see some spraypaint errosion as well. The water, however, looks awesome. I put plasticard on the bottom, sealed it with elmers glue and green stuff, added in a plasticard grate that I made and poured in the water.

The building is foamboard with the edges sealed in watered down glue, and some sweet vines I got from Hobby Town.

Another building, more foamboard, vines and craft sticks. I really liked the looks of this one though.

The other side of the board was pretty empty, and I wanted to break that up, so I built a water tower. More craft sticks. The basin is the bottom of a disposable moutwash cup with a reinforced plasticard rim. I threw leaves in the bottom for character and water effects. Makes for a fantastic obstruction. One of the goals with this table was to make it Not symmetrical, and give a benefit to going second. One side favors shooting, the other favors melee armies. Makes you actually pick.

First game! Jarl's Trollbloods vs. eCaine's Cygnar! Actually was exactly the two armies I wanted to put on this table to test it out, and it was a blast. Very playable, very enjoyable, had a great time.

So that's it for the table. I'm really excited it turned out, and I'll be doing a few tutorials in the near future on specific aspects of it. Chime in if you want to see something in particular.

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