Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Upgrading Terrain: Pimping Out Some Hedgerows.

   I, originally, posted on how I was going to start new projects in December. Only, part of this has happened. A lot of time has been spent on the Siege of Augusta Tournament preparation, which we will get to see the results in the next post. Since I made a new standard to my trees, it is only natural to revisit my hedgerows for a reboot. This, also, has a hidden goal to plan my terrain for this coming Historicon this July.
      Above, is what I made today. I wanted my realistic sized trees along with the regular size of the hedges. I might have a few more hedgerows with trees, but most will be the shorter type. This are also mounted on chair railing for a base unlike my simple ones. Just keep in mind that these are the basic new ones, since I will be touching up and adding interesting details. It has been said by quite a few people in the gaming world, that details add that much more fun to the game.
    How I made them:
     I went out a cut up a bunch of chair railings. For anyone who don't know what chair railings are, they are a decorative board that sits along the center of the wall originally to prevent wearing of chairs and other furniture rubbing against it. Fairly cheap, an eight-foot board costs about $3.00 plus tax. I used this mainly to cut corners in raising earthworks under my hedgerow. In other tutorials, hedgerows where built up with Kitty Liter or rocks. As effective as this is, I have found no real photo reference that there were made with stones so exclusively. They were root systems, bushes and trees. Sure, there were stones in there, but not as much as it is modeled. So I wanted what I saw in pictures.
    After cutting the chair rails, I hammered nails in various places I wanted my hedges to go. This was for both planning purposes and reinforcement. Then, I drilled holes into spots where I wanted select trees to go. In one of the previous posts, Tree Life: Making New Trees, I used sage brush from
a Super Sage Tree Kit I purchased from the web company: Scenic Express for my tree trunks. Now that I figured out how to make my ideal trees, I went out a found some local branches my area.
   After making the holes, I use a glue gun to place the trees. The great thing with the glue gun is that it is quick and cheap! I took an extra step and used the glue gun to make various roots to break up the chair railing shape. When I flock it with dirt, only the glue gun roots will be seen.
   The trees are the fun part. The Sage Tree Kit comes with various foliage sizes to shape your tree with. I tend to use my trusty Loctite Control Gel made for metal as my go to glue. The reason is simple, I can glue and count to 30, and it is ready! I should be a spokes person for this glue company. I know I have used over a $1,000 of their glue over the years. I place the branches against other branches and joints in the main trunk.
    Next, I make my hedges. I have been using heavy duty scouring pads for the main hedge. They are cheap. I went to a dollar store a bought 10 packs of 4 for $10.00. I break them up and rip them to get different shapes. Then, I glue them on with hot glue with the glue gun. I glue the nails, especially. I also glue on top of the scouring pads, fibers from an air conditioning filter. This breaks up the flatter surfaces I could not break up when I broke up the pads.
   When that is set, I spray paint the whole thing dark brown. I think my paint was a dark chestnut color. When, that dries, it is ready for flocking. I start top down. I spray the trees with 3M Spray Adhesive. This one was the General Purpose 45 version. Then, I flock it! I used Superleaf for my leaves for the trees. After that, I go down to the hedges. I flocked them with Noch Leafs. There is nothing saying you can't change things up. Then, I used dirt for the base. I did not use adhesive for the base. Instead, I mixed Elmer's Glue mixed with an acrylic brown paint for dual duties. The dirt sticks well.
   After it is dry, I paint the highlights of the trunks and roots. You could do this before you flock, but I do this afterwards to bush off any leaves that stuck to the main branches. Anything else, it just extra modeling. Below are the photos of the steps.
Chair railing with nails. I did not paint it white. It tends to come already primed white due to being the normal household trim color.

As you can see, added root systems really cheap. It was actually a happy accident I was inspired by in another project.

More roots!

The Heavy Duty Scouring Pads. You can break them up more that this. I found I did not need to.

This was for 28mm and up. I think it would be too big for 20mm. Some might argue for 28mm as well. Look outside at some of those 40ft. trees next to three-story buildings.
28mm Panzer IV's and 4Ground Building for scale comparison. I will cover muddy roads in another post.

          I am generally happy with the results. I plan on using them for a future convention game on a 6' x 15' table. It will have about 25 foot sections, if it goes to plan. The great thing about some of this larger trees is that you do not have to use a lot of them to get a great look. However, these would probably not work for tournaments. I would have loved to do this standard in a tournament setting. At the moment, I am still amazed I got 10 tables worth of terrain in a Jeep Liberty for our Tournament for Siege of Augusta! I won't be using these hedges there. Anyway, I hope you are inspired!

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