Saturday, December 26, 2015

River ford

Another Christmas Day has come and gone. I hope everyone had a good time and got lots of nice gaming stuff. Boxing Day saw me noodling with a ford for the river sections.

As usual I began with a piece of clear acrylic. It's wider than a standard river section and I cut the corners off to meet the straight pieces, since I want to make it appear as a broader and shallower area of river where a ford might be found. The width would allow for slopes down from the road to the ford. (The trio of carol singers in the background are an ornament based on the gargoyles from Disney's Hunchback of Notre Dame movie. One of them lost a hand, which I glued back. I've spent a lot of time repairing small breakages in ornaments this year for some reason.)

For the next stage I glued strips of wood to stiffen the plastic and raise the level of the banks-to-be. I used ordinary epoxy adhesive for this, a dab of which went to fix the ornament's fist. The stretch of shallows that will mark the ford is sand sprinkled on Aleene's tacky glue mixed with a little water and spread over the plastic. Ordinarily this wouldn't stick to the plastic that well, but it's easy to work with and in this case it'll be sealed beneath the layer of Envirotex Lite varnish.

Next up, I applied spackle to the banks and spread it out and down to form the slopes to the fordable area.

A bit of ordinary acrylic craft paint for grass and mud. I usually do this painting stage after sealing the banks with Pledge mixed with a little brown paint, but since the fordable stretch would go under the varnish, I needed to do this now.

Final stage - the Envirotex Lite is poured on then spread to cover the river and fordable stretch. It's still wet right now, and the ford is more visible than the photo suggests. Once everything's dry, I'll remove the strips of tape from the ends and the ford'll be open for business.

This is really intended for 10mm figures, but will work just as well for larger scales. Next up I'll work on an N-scale bridge. I was thinking of making one that would fit on any stretch of river, but on further thought I'll make one with its own length of river. It'll look better that way. 

1 comment:

Michael Awdry said...

Excellent, that certainly seems to do the trick.


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