Friday 6 January 2017

MDF Buildings from Hoka Hey

I was unfamiliar with Hoka Hey Wargaming, but thought I would provide a thumbnail review, as I purchased some MDF buildings from them this week. Firstly I was looking for 'generic' buildings that were re-usable, so I figured I would give their 'Animal Pen/Outbuilding' and 'Ruined Farm Building/House' a try.

  • Speed - Ordered 3 January, arrived today, so top marks for order fulfilment.
  • Cost -  £8.50 for the Animal Pen, and £6.00 for the ruined house. Top marks for cost as well. Note that the ruined building also had a 'debris' MDF sheet with some 'rubble' and rafters.
  • Overall package.. included instructions for the 'Timeline Miniatures' models, with image and build sequence,not really necessary, as I probably could have figured it all out, but handy.
  • Build quality - excellent...  everything went together well, though I found the points where the mdf was attached to the sheet were thicker than I was used to, and needed freeing with a knife if I didn't want to damage delicate parts.
  • Detail..  some nice little touches, so for example the ruined farmhouse included separate window-sills so the window frames were recessed properly.
  • Features - each of the buildings had a MDF base. Very much more convenient, some other companies could take note. The build surface is smooth other than a couple of locations with engraved detail showing bricks or blocks underneath a render, and engraved planking detail on doors and the 'pigsty' and pen building roof.
  • Criticisms? Hmm...  being very picky, the roof detail on the animal pen shows boards that are wider than you might expect. The gate on the animal pen appears to attach directly to the wall, not to wooden uprights, which would be unusual.
Overall, I am delighted with these, and as the ruined farmhouse contained separate window frames, I used some of the left over MDF frames to create 'wrecked frames to make some replacements, and liberated a couple of the window frames. I then used the 'double doors' from the animal/pen to create two end doors on the building, scrap MDF to fill in where the doors would be, attached the frames, and now it is a small dwelling with yard and animal pen. 


So for a grand total of £14.50, two usable buildings..   that could be pretty much 1740s on. I am now wondering how to finish these, and whether I could make them generic enough to do double duty from AWI to Northern Europe. The main issue would seem to be the construction methods and roofing. As I intend to update the roofing with cardboard shingles/tiles, it's just the underlying wood vs brick that creates issues.

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