Thursday, 17 February 2011

Ridges & Hills

the tables were all painted with a first coat of green base paint. At the same time we realised we had quite a few off cuts of 18mm MDF. The initial plan was to do the the hills in mainly high density urethane but we thought we'd use up the MDF.

The result was a complete surprise. 18mm MDF is difficult to grind/saw/cut an angle on it to give a decent looking slope. We managed to get 45 degrees and were then left with a solution that involved a drill with a carborundum tip to grind the slope shallower. This would take an age as the bit is only about 40mm across and the chuck limits the angle.

Then John saw a device on the internet, a new grinding wheel that fits a normal hand grinder. It comes from Croatia and looks like a cheese grater.
Would it work? The results are astonishing! Look at the first piccy. The ridge you are looking at is about 8 feet long and 1 foot wide. The slopes are roughly 3" long as you can see the virgin MDF after the cut. The angle is about 14 degrees!!!! Looks brilliant for 10mm scale. On top you can see the shaped urethane for the next contour. The grinder also does this and as it is 6mm thick, the slope area is dropped to 2".

Now the biggy!
The large ridge, you are viewing the back of this, is about 15 feet long and made the same way. It will be in 4 sections, joined side by side. It will do for any major Napoleonic/ACW/Marlburian battle and probably others. There is also space for a 3rd contour, which will be removable, and even a fourth. The possibilities of design are many.
Does any of this slide about. No, it grips quite tightly. If anything moving things has to be done with great care.
Lastly for today, a little piccy of little hills, mainly for WWII.  The colour looks different because of the angle/light but it shows how easily the hill should blend into the table when all receives final coats, texture and dry brushing. The plateau part of the hill is finished and I need a wide angle lens, again, to show better detail. Just believe me that in real life, it works.
Next will hopefully be finished ridges!