Sunday 19 May 2019

More Terrain

Some time back I made a conscious decision that I was going to try and make sure the quality of my terrain was up to the same standard as the vehicles and infantry that I collect and paint.

So with that in mind, I have gradually been adding to the collection of 28mm terrain for campaigns in France. The latest additions were two kits I picked up from Alan at Hoka Hey at Carronade last week. These are from the Timeline Miniatures range he now carries, and were very inexpensive.

Given that I usually do a lot of additional work on MDF buildings, I am really only interested in the shell, and the Timeline Church (£15) and Farm Outbuilding (£4.75) looked like a good base to work from.

Fine sturdy church
The crenellated top section is optional. I left mine off, intending to use it to create a spire that could be added to the basic model.

The instructions (make sure you look on the rear of the paper as well). Seems straightforward.

I did a quick dry-run just to make sure everything fits together nicely. The Timeline kits have finer tolerances than some others I have used so sometimes the fit is quite 'tight' - be prepared to sand or file as required. The roof also detaches in two halves. I find this tricky, and it makes it hard to get the roof to look right, so instead I glued the two roof halves together, trimmed back the lugs from the walls, and braced the roof internally with some of the MDF 'sprues' This gave me a one piece roof that would be easier to model with additional tiling, and made it easier to take off and put on.

Construction details
As with all MDF kits - make sure you wrap or use elastic bands to get a good join.

The core pieces - on the right is the base for the crenellated add-on to the tower.
Having assembled the sub-components, as you can see here, I normally assemble dry, then use a paint brush with slightly thinned PVA to run down the inside of joints. The capillary action ensures the PVA flows into the join but avoids over-spill on the building.

Taped up and ready
Once the assembly has had time to set, it's time for the fun bit. Different folk have different approaches to surfacing MDF. Out of the pack it is simply too flat and featureless to look real. Various techniques include using a sand and paint mixture, textured paint, applying a plaster surface or cladding with card etc. This is the quick, easy and dirty way.

Putty up any significant dents or gaps, especially around the MDF joints.  Then get a hobby or small drill with a round sanding head, and attack this thing.. get brutal. Unless you feel like engraving stonework, just be random.

Post-Dremel Assault

Surface detail

Interior paint
After this - just painting - a coat of  'Coffee Bean', then a wetbrush of 'Pistachio' some sand and PVA for the base, and doors in German grey highlighted with Basalt grey. On to the roof.

The oldest Poly cement in the world.

The tiles are plastic, and easy to apply, its not strictly necessary to use vintage poly cement like this one..

Roof done
Into the paint shop, the roof is German grey, highlighted tiles are in Basalt grey, then a drybrush of mixed greys. The body got some 'mud' from the Tamiya pigments set, plus rainwater streaks with very watery dark grey smudged in with fingers. 



Roads in production
Having finished the church and outbuildings, it's on to doing some roads. MDF cut to shape, covered in tiling grout (messy!) added sand and dragged a stick through the grout for tracks.

Onwards and upwards!

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