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Terrain Guide: Tools and Supplies
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Old 17 Mar 2007, 19:01   #1 (permalink)
Shas'El
 
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Default Terrain Guide: Tools and Supplies

This topic will cover the various tools and materials commonly used in making wargames terrain. Making terrain of your own can be cheap and easy, you don't have to spend a fortune to have a nice table.

Tools:

Modeling Knife: Your good 'ol trusty hobby knife. This is one of the primary tools needed for terrain.

Hot glue gun: This is another must-have tool. They do everything you need for assembling your buildings or hills and also to glue terrain to their bases.

PVA glue: Commonly known as Elmer's glue, it is useful for just about anything. While not as strong as hot glue it still has many other uses. You can mix it with sand or flock to give your terrain a nice texture or use it simply to coat the terain before painting.

Other glue: You may find that a bottle of super glue or some other quick bonding glue will come in handy. While this isn't reccommended for basic construction, it can be very useful for detailed work.

Paint brushes: You won't want to use your good model brushes for terrain but you will need brushes to paint your terrain. You can easily get a variety package of brushes at local hobby store for very cheap. You will want several different brushes, larger ones for "painting on" PVA glue and drybrushing large pieces of terrain and smaller and medium sized ones for more detailed painting.

Scissors: Your basic cutting tool. You'll want scissors big enough to cut cardboard but not too big to where it is difficult to cut detailed shapes. They can also be useful for "distressing" various bits giving them the worn and beaten look.

Wire cutters: A necessity if you are using wire. They can also be very useful for chopping up or distressing bits.

Mixing pots: When you are dealing with large amounts of paint or mixtures of glue and sand you will need a mixing pot. I find the tops of spray cans ideal but there are many suitable alternatives.

Modeling saw: This will come in handy for sculpting larger blocks of foam. The hot wire foam cutter from GW is a better tool but it is also quite expensive.

Ruler: This will come in handy for marking straight lines when designing buildings.

Pens and Pencils: You may need these for sketching outlines and such.

Materials:

Cardboard:


The cheapest and most readily available material for making terrain. It is not the best material to use for buildings but is great for making bases or hills. To get large amounts try going to a local store that will have empty boxes on hand and ask if you can take them. Most people will be more than willing to get rid of it.

Foam Core Board:


This is great for making buildings. It can also be used for making hills and other various types of terrain. Most hobby stores will carry foam core board.

Polystyrene:


Commonly known as styrofoam, this can be used for almost anything. Aerosol will melt polystyrene so make sure and coat it with PVA glue to prevent you terrain from being damaged. Polystrene can be found as packing material in larger boxes and at most hardware stores.

Insulation Foam:


Insulation foam is great for making natural terrain. Hills, craters, valleys and trenches can me easily made with insulation foam. You can find it at most hardware stores or order it online.

Cork Tiles: Cork tiles can be used to make everything from hills to debris. They are easy to cut, yet very sturdy. Available at most hardware stores or hobby stores.

Sand and flock: Sand is free if you look in the right places. Use a mixture of PVA glues sand or flock to give texture to terrain. Adding a little water to the mix will help to get it to the desired consistency.

Straws: Great for piping. The ones with the bendable tops are the best.

Cardboard tubes: Save those paper towel rolls and Pringles cans. These can be used to make effective towers, fuel tanks, bunkers, etc.

PVC pipe: Useful for, well, piping. Using a variety of different PVC joints glued to a larger structure can make a fantastic oil refinery or similar manufacturing facility.

Paint: When painting large terrain spray paint is the quickest and easiest way to go. You may want to use your Citadel paints for drybrushing or detailing but the bulk of the painting can be done with spray paint alone.

Cardstock: Thinner than cardboard, this can be used for bases or small buildings.

Bits box: take a look through your bits box if you have one. Old models can be used as casualties and random bits can make great detail bits on buildings.

Wire: Great for making barbed wire for fences or barricades.

Everything around you: Just keep an open eye, you never know what random object might start looking like a great bunker or comm station.


These are just some of the tools and materials that are useful for building your own terrain. However, unless you are building an extensive or extremely detailed project, you can make some wonderful pieces of terrain with just a handful of the materials listed.

Always remember to use caution when using knifes or other sharp tools and stay in a well ventilated area when using spray paint.

Good luck and have fun!

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Old 17 Mar 2007, 19:23   #2 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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Default Re: Terrain Guide: Tools and Supplies

Good job! Nice tutorial for begginers not really sure how to make terrain. Stickie and karmatize I say!
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Old 17 Mar 2007, 20:10   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Terrain Guide: Tools and Supplies

Yup karma and a sticky this
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Old 07 Apr 2007, 07:59   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Terrain Guide: Tools and Supplies

Wow, this is great! If you could put up some tutorials of stuff made in these ways, it would be great!
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Old 10 Apr 2007, 23:22   #5 (permalink)
Shas'El
 
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Default Re: Terrain Guide: Tools and Supplies

I've done one for polystyrene. I will be doing one for a hive world table using foam core next and eventually one for a desert world using insulation foam.
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Old 06 Jun 2007, 23:14   #6 (permalink)
Kroot Shaper
 
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Default Re: Terrain Guide: Tools and Supplies

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Execution of All Things
Insulation foam is great for making natural terrain. Hills, craters, valleys and trenches can me easily made with insulation foam. You can find it at most hardware stores or order it online.
Can you recommend (and link) some online places to buy insulation foam? I have found 3/4" insulation foam at my local Home Depot, but I am looking for something in the 2"-3" thickness and am so far am drawing a blank.
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Old 07 Jun 2007, 02:52   #7 (permalink)
Shas'El
 
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Default Re: Terrain Guide: Tools and Supplies

Yeah, I snagged these links from one of Blacksteel's posts.

http://www.dow.com/styrofoam/

http://www.thomasnet.com/products/ex...6824409-1.html

Hope it helps.
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Old 07 Jun 2007, 11:33   #8 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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Default Re: Terrain Guide: Tools and Supplies

Looks like a pretty good list of tools and materials to get started with.

I'd just like to add two more items that I use on a regular basis ( and are cheap and easy to obtain ).

- 220 and 400 grit sandpaper ( best way to finish off shaping your insulation foam pieces, but don't use it on the typical white packing foam as it'll just rip apart into tiny balls. )
- 1/8 inch thick hardboard ( like clipboards are made of. )

The hardboard is great to use for basing terrain at first, then once you're more comfortable with working/cutting it you can use it to actually construct pieces out of. It's relatively cheap, a 2' by 4' sheet typically runs under $10 Cdn ( including taxes ), which should be good for a few projects at least.
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Old 26 Jun 2007, 23:00   #9 (permalink)
Kroot Shaper
 
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Default Re: Terrain Guide: Tools and Supplies

lol...some of them are really easy to get, if you look around...past week e was running with a bunch of friends, and we saw a building that wasn't finished.we approached to the building and we saw a sign:"construction stopped because of illegalities in the project".that house was like that for 16 years!!.we decided to go in the house. in the lower floor we found tons and TONS of usefull material untouched!!rooms of blue Styrofoam sheets, milions of euros in buckets of paint (i even found Little obby paints!), isolation spray-(good to make rocks), clay,usefull pipes made of plastic, a machine to cut everything,and much much more!!when we left we even had brought 1% of the material left there!...i know that was illegal , but that building was illegal too. Anyway, i could have spent like 400 euros for the material that i "borrow" from the building...hehehe... you have to open your eyes...
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Old 20 Aug 2007, 00:20   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Terrain Guide: Tools and Supplies

Textured paint, is very useful for doing bases, it may not seal whatever your making as well as you'd like, but it saves having to mix sand and p.v.a.

I'd also recomend the stuff they use to fill in gaps in tiles, "Generic purpose silicone"

CD's & Tiles make great bases for terrain. Lichen is also great for making your own trees or bushes.
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