More on Warmachine Terrain – Part 3 – A Mountain

Warmachine Terrain – A Mountain

I have written a few other articles on this topic and, if you haven’t read them, you may wish to double back and do so:

However, if you are familiar with table top terrain building, you can likely skip those two articles.  In this post, I am going to cover how I made a mountain.  In this case the mountain is not intended to have models on it but it is met to be impassable terrain and nothing more.

This project will take a few days to complete.  Not because there is a terrible amount of work involved in it but because you are going to have to wait for materials to dry between steps.

Let us first review the basic tools and materials we need.

Materials and Tools

For materials:

  • Floral Foam or Styrofoam “Saw dust” –  Kudos to my brother Matt for the donation and suggestion on this one.  Every time he cuts Styrofoam, he saves the dust from it.  It makes for an excellent texture, is easy to work with and is very lightweight.  It also makes for a good material to decorate model bases with.
  • Cardboard – I have a small stack of pizza circle cardboard which works great.  Fret not over the cardboard too much, everything is going to be painted.
  • Craft Flowers and Plants – Optional for the mountain project but nice to put finishing touches on it.
  • An old Christmas wreath – also optional but great for trees
  • Spray Paint
  • Wire – I used telephone wire, you can use what you wish but keep in mind your scale
  • Hardware Cloth or Chicken Wire – I prefer the smaller grid of hardware cloth but you can use any type of wire screening provided it is stiff enough to hold a shape.
  • Drywall Mud or Spackle Paste
  • Burlap
  • Glue – Use common sense to determine what will work.  Adhesive caulking is also nice to have around.

For tools:

  • Scissors – for cardboard and paper
  • Wire cutters and pliers
  • Paint brushes
  • A Putty Knife, about 3-4″ in width

Getting Started – The Mountain “Frame”

To start, bend some hardware cloth into roughly the shape you wish your mountain to be.  As I mentioned above, this particular mountain is intended to serve as impassable terrain.  It is not intended to allow you to place models on it.  It met to be fairly lightweight and relatively sturdy.

This is the first step.  Form the rough shape of your mountian.
This is the first step. Form the rough shape of your mountain.

As you can see in the photo above, simply bend your material into a rough shape and glue it to your cardboard base.  (I suggest you use a good sized glob of adhesive caulk.  Set the piece aside and let the caulk set.

Next Trim and Cover

Make sure to cut or at least fold over any sharp edges that may poke through the fabric, or worse, your fingers
Make sure to cut or at least fold over any sharp edges that may poke through the fabric, or worse, your fingers

While Warmachine is a brutal and bloody game, it is a pretend game.  Make sure you don’t leave any jagged edges on your mountain.

Next, spread some glue.

Spread some wood or hobby glue.
Spread some wood or hobby glue.

I prefer to use wood glue but you can use regular old Elmer’s or a similar type of glue.  Try and work rather quickly as you want the glue wet enough to soak into the burlap.

Glue bonds better with some pressure, you are going to put all kinds of stuff on top of the burlap so fret not over any glue that may seep through.

Put some weight on the glued areas to make it bond better.
Put some weight on the glued areas to make it bond better.

Securing the Burlap

You will need to make sure that the burlap cannot move.  While it is glued to the base, you need to use some wire to make sure that does not move.  Don’t worry about hiding your wire, you are going to cover it anyways.

 

Secure the burlap with wire.
Secure the burlap with wire.

Cover the Burlap

Put a coat of drywall mud on it.
Put a coat of drywall mud on it.

I suggest that you go with two thinner coats for it will dry better.  Also keep in mind that you will be adding texture on the final coat.

Texturize It

Put another coat of mud on it and bury it in pink foam dust.
Put another coat of mud on it and bury it in pink foam dust.

To add texture, I used pink foam.  Put another coat of mud on it and literally bury it in pink foam dust.  Don’t touch it while wet but let it dry completely.  Keep in mind it may take a few days depending on how thick you coated it and deep you buried it.  In my case, it took three days to dry.

Seal It

Depending on how you wish to finish off your mountain, you may not wish to seal it.  However, most materials stick better to a primed surface.  It certainly makes painting it easier.  I recommend Kilz Primer Sealer Stain Killer. It is important to use this product in a well ventilated area. However, this particular product covers well and dries quick.

Top It Off

I am not sure exactly how I am going to finish this one off.  You have a few options:

  • Simply spray paint it the appropriate colors
  • Tuft up some cotton balls, glue them to the mountain and hit them with some green spray enamel.  It will look like a forest.
  • Dyed chicken feather cut and tufted look like grasses
  • You can insert any type of terrain material you wish.

That is it for today’s post. I will share exactly how I put the finishing touches on this project, along with other terrain and structures for Warmachine in the future.  Thanks for reading.