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Modular Industrial Table WIP **now featuring terrain**


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#1
NTaW

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Hello fellow Frater! 
 
I recently took a break from building and painting models to work on a table idea for Shadow War or smaller games of 40k (maybe even Zone Mortalis if you just play the table without terrain). I figure, if you want a ton of levels to play at why not start with a level built into the board itself? Going for a long dried out sewage treatment plant or something of that ilk. If nothing else, sludgy water channels all over a city. Once I get this all done I can set out working on the pieces of terrain that take it vertical; the plan is to have at least four levels above the main table level (six levels for models!) with walkways of various length connecting them at different heights. This is my rough sketching of the tiles themselves as well as some of the details I plan to do ("F" tiles are entirely raised up 2" to allow for larger buildings).
 
33197662664_64a6743213_c.jpg
 
I got on a sketching roll and did a few 3x3 tables thinking more about Zone Mortalis, one has been shaded to indicate playable area (grey).
 
33902926882_898eb1e8ef_c.jpg
 
Today I was able to get all the MDF I need for the tiles, which means I can start production pretty much as soon as I can throw some more time at it. Really stoked to get this rolling; I might not be able to play a 2k match of 40k fully painted but Shadow War? Oh I got that model count covered laugh.png
 
More to follow, any questions or comments are more than welcome! As much as I've drawn until it's all glued in place there's room for anything to happen.

Edited by NTaW, 27 May 2017 - 12:22 AM.

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#2
SW1

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Excellent ... Consider this followed!!! There's now a few of us doing scenery blogs so maybe we could bash heads together and encourage more people to have a go. ;)

Just started something similar myself. Looking at the designs reminds me of where I was first going to go design wise. However I quickly realised after testing it out at a slightly smaller scale that this type of scenery at a high density has real issues with accessing the centre I the board especially the lower levels once the scenery starts getting layered up.

The four options I found to deal with this is:

- make the lower layer much more open so you can reach through to move models
- have the centre of the board completely open so you can reach in (though if the scenery gets too high around the edge you might topple stuff over)
- make the centre of the board impassable on lower levels
- make a thinner but longer board so all layers are accessible

Lol ... While typing I came up with an extra soloution. ;)

I'm interested in seeing how you'll be constructing the layers and texturing/detailing the pieces.

Edited by SW1, 16 April 2017 - 08:11 AM.

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#3
NTaW

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Thanks for the comment! This is my first board project and I've only really worked with insulation foam using it as insulation before, but cutting is cutting right? I appreciate the heads up on the density issues. I've though about it a bit but not as in depth. These are some sketches of buildings I plan on making. Two 4 level towers, one 'double stack' three level, and one large building (note this one is more a rough shape and size, the actual building won't just be a square with another square atop it laugh.png).

 

34061567725_fd812e24a0_z.jpg

 

The lowest possible walkway would be 4" up from the main level, but I think I would be mostly keeping them at 8" and higher which would provide ample room to move underneath. At that point the models in the sewer would be 10" below someone on a walkway, think that offers enough height? This is my original drawing of 3x3 combinations with red buildings and blue walkways, the longest of which I'm aiming at being 16" long but we'll see what can support models once I start those. I'm also planning on doing magnetized railings for any platforms I intend on having a walkway potentially join, with magnetic strips on the bottom on the walkways for stability and smaller magnets in the railing pretty much just to look cool. Modular or bat-censored.gif crazy is yet to be proven laugh.png

 

34061580335_ce562f8d84_z.jpg

 

ALSO, and this really only occurred to me as I spoke with my spouse about the project last night, since Shadow War is campaign oriented and sometimes played on maps as small as 2x2 I figured I could sketch out a 4x4 campaign map and do missions on specific 2x2 areas so that there's extra fluffy goodness to be had for each battle. Might make it feel like part of a larger engagement? Again, the verdict on modular or bat-censored.gif crazy is still out. For now my focus is on getting the actual table assembled and decorated. Hopefully this week I can find the time to bring my chunks of foam in to work and get them chopped into the appropriate bits so I can start gluing them to the now pencil-marked tiles I have.

 

ALSO pt.2, I can easily make 12" wall sections that allow me to expand this table to my much lower 2x2 panels for bigger games of 40k. Maybe make them look like storm drains emptying out into the waste that is whatever planet my table represents, but so long as they cover the unfinished edge of the higher board all will be well.


Edited by NTaW, 16 April 2017 - 03:03 PM.

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#4
NTaW

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Well, I didn't have enough 2" foam to get everything cut today, but I got a crap ton accomplished regardless. I have all of the 4" and most of the 2" cuts done, but not the 12" squares. I'll do my best to get some gluing done and pics up by the end of the week. 

 

Cutting foam with a band saw is the best ever, by the way. Doing that with a knife or wire cutter would have been waaaaay more work.



#5
NTaW

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More progress! Here's the stack of foam chunks I have done so far. Stuff on the left gets glued as-is, stuff on the right goes back for some extra cutting/I gotta try and get some 2" thick pieces out of them.

 

34144011825_eee5cdfcf6.jpg

 

As you can see, it's a very professional setup I have out on my balcony for the gluing process:

 

34013351551_1f52745f49.jpg

 

I got seven of the sixteen tiles glued today, all set up in the closet to dry. Nine more to go!

 

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#6
NTaW

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They're dry and held fast:

34032106401_e433b18985.jpg

Edited by NTaW, 21 April 2017 - 02:29 PM.

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#7
Frostbit3

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Fun to watch the progress. Keep going!

#8
Altis

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Great start!


Iron within!

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#9
NTaW

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Thanks, it's a lot of fun seeing it come together as well. I got the rest of the foam for the 'room' tiles cut out yesterday. Though most of the corners will be filled in with rubble to make them look like battle damage they will still offer a lot more of a 'room' feel, specially if used in a Zone Mortalis setting.

 

34020026202_acda436555.jpg

 

Darn shame that it won't be warm enough for gluing outside again until Sunday. I might cut some foamcore and start building up the pieces I have already...I might spend my time perusing the copy of Shadow War rules I got yesterday. Got a good enough deal on everything but the terrain and red templates (I tried for those templates sad.png) from the box, really looking forward to taking in the rules properly and not via leaked pictures. Plus: MOAR MODELS!!! woot.gif


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#10
Altis

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Do you want the red templates? I got the box for the scenery and book, I've plenty of templates so I'm not fussed on the red ones


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Iron within!

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#11
NTaW

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Do you want the red templates? I got the box for the scenery and book, I've plenty of templates so I'm not fussed on the red ones

 

Well, to be sure I have templates that work just fine...but I've been playing Blood Angels for ~20 years and those red ones match real nice :lol:

 

I'll shoot you a PM to chat it up. As for the table...

 

I got all the cutting of foam finished today, the last pieces are in my car waiting to come up and be glued in place. Sunday it should get up to 17 degrees so I'll try and get the last few panels glued in and around actually spending time with the family on a sunny day off thumbsup.gif  I'm currently loving how easy everything has gone for me so far, using thin blades on a band saw has been a dream for keeping mess and effort out of the picture. Plus there will be very little sanding to get a true finish; if I do this more I'll be investing in a much better blade for the application. Cutting the tile pattern out of cardboard with an exacto is going the be the real bottleneck in my process I think.


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#12
SW1

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It's coming together really nicely and making me reconsider the direction I was heading in with my project.

Having the right tools for the job really helps. :tu:

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#13
NTaW

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It's coming together really nicely and making me reconsider the direction I was heading in with my project.

Having the right tools for the job really helps. thumbsup.gif

 

What new direction are you thinking?

 

Tiles are all cut and glued, here's a pic of the whole thing together before I put it away to cure:

 

34229558195_dd9fdcfc84_z.jpg

 

It's worth mentioning that I will likely only rarely be playing this as a full 4'x4' board. I'll also need to weigh down the bases of my terrain if I want them to sit nicely on a spot where four tiles meet. 


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#14
SW1

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I was going to make the lower level as several large solid building which can then have the lighter more open buildings sitting on top of them.

I'm now trying to work out if I can get a similar effect by fixing the lower level to the base board or several smaller baseboards.

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#15
NTaW

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I can get behind that idea. Almost like the inverse of my board here, with some tweaking for building sizes.

Currently gluing foamcore to the bottoms of all the trenches, 5/14 tiles complete. Then comes the walls...not looking forward to doing the walls. Keeping pressure on them while they dry will be a trick for sure even using blocks of scrap foam.

 

EDIT: Make that all 14/14 tiles complete. Now to figure out how to glue the mesh down to the top without gluing whatever I weigh it down with to the top as well confused.gif


Edited by NTaW, 25 April 2017 - 06:55 PM.


#16
SW1

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If you can push a pin through the mesh at a 45 deg angle that might work. Have it so the pin is pointing towards the centre of the board so it can keep tension on the material.

Depending on the glue you may be able to then remove the pin. Or if you use flat headed pins just push them flush.

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#17
SW1

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Been thinking about the issue a bit more. You have a few extra options.

- Do some tests and see of something like grease proof paper sticks to the glue your using. If it doesn't the use it as a barrier between the weight and the top.

- If your edging the mesh (I'm assuming it's metal mesh) then glue the edges only and put the edging on at the same time. Again pins would help hold things in place and also if left in look like rivets.

- if you've not got the mesh yet possibly use plasticard sheeting that has a mesh detail but doesn't have perforations. Glue sticking the weights down all of a sudden isn't an issue.

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#18
NTaW

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Great minds think alike! Check this out, I'm (successfully I might add) gluing down plastic gutter covering from the dollar store by pinning it down:

 

34284493465_190df7ee82_z.jpg

 

33903703390_203714328c_z.jpg


Edited by NTaW, 26 April 2017 - 06:25 PM.

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#19
NTaW

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- If your edging the mesh (I'm assuming it's metal mesh) then glue the edges only and put the edging on at the same time. Again pins would help hold things in place and also if left in look like rivets.
 

 

As I been gluing more tiles I've changed my mind about what's going on top of the mesh and this idea would have been a huge time saver. I could have used finishing nails through foamcore to pin the edges of the mesh down and the trim would have provided the buffer between drying glue and tile weighing it down on top of it.

 

Damn. Ah well, that's what I'll do the next time I build something like this thumbsup.gif

 

8/16 tiles have been successfully meshed.


Edited by NTaW, 29 April 2017 - 05:11 PM.


#20
NTaW

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Well I got up to 10/16 tiles meshed today, and I hope to do the last few tomorrow. All the mesh required is cut and ready to go just need the pins from the last few to be available again. In the mean time I started cutting the strips of foamcore I'll need to do the tops of the tiles, here's my super sophisticated setup:

 

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I have to go to the hardware store for some new blades (among other supplies), think I'll be using something a bit heavier than the dainty one in the picture for the rest. I'm definitely going to use the tiniest finishing nails I can find to pin the pieces of foamcore down/act as rivets. I likely could have managed it all in one step but the plan changed and was influenced by helpful people so here I am. Once the foamcore is pinned and pressed in place he won't be on such an upward angle, but any terrain I build in the future will have to have foamcore feet on the base to help stabilize on the board. Hurray learning!

 

33537929633_ef3cd6e2dc_z.jpg



#21
SW1

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That's looking great. Are you leavin the edges of the foamboard raw or covering with something?

If your wanting to cover some quick bodges are ...

Texture the outer edge with filler (spackle if your in the USA). This gives a nice stone/concrete texture.

Masking tape can also work to cover the raw edges and make them smooth. You need to give it a layer of something to make it a bit more solid/seal it down (just add PVA to your basecoat and apply with a brush)
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#22
NTaW

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The only exposed foamcore edges when the table is together are the ones on the inside of the square and the yet-unseen toppers to the trench walls. I was going to go around the exterior edges with filler/spackle for increased durability but putting a bit in on the 'inside' edges of the foam would be a nice touch. I'm all kinds of familiar with putty knives and how to get stuff where you want it with minimal to no sanding afterward so I don't even anticipate that adding much time to my process.

 

Good call!


Edited by NTaW, 30 April 2017 - 03:37 PM.

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#23
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I've been wanting to get cracking with my board building but RL issues have stopped me. So seeing your board jumping forward is helping keep my hobby mojo going. :tu:

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#24
NTaW

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My main job has a pretty low-hour impact on my life and my other jobs are sporadic at best so if my kid is asleep I'm doing something for this table. Got out to the hardware store and picked up a ton of brad nails, just have four more tiles to mesh and I'm going to start doing the trench walls. I figure I should have them in place before doing the tops, since the top will but up against the trench wall. It then gets a cap to cover the not-so-pretty bandsaw foamcore cuts which also means the trench walls are ~1/4" higher than the mesh flooring so anyone on the main floor will have at least partial cover in a lot of circumstances. You'll have to be on the same area of open ground and right close to each other to draw an unobstructed line of sight even without scatter terrain, which is a huge step in the right direction compared to my current trench table that offers nothing but the trenches and your other units for cover (it's a censored.gif:ing gong show against a gunline army without a lot of busted vehicle scatter terrain).

 

EDIT: Top details are coming together! I know I just said I'd do the trench walls first but I have a hard time not using the stuff I just got apparently (ie. the nails).

 

34237867681_cbe09b4373_z.jpg


Edited by NTaW, 30 April 2017 - 09:38 PM.

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#25
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8/16 tiles topped. 

 

Definitely going to be getting some type of table saw to cut foamcore with. This ruler and knife stuff just isn't doing it for me even with a heavier duty knife, clamps on the ruler, and less forceful passes. I could be spending less time cutting and more time assembling! TO THE HARDWARE STORE woot.gif






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