Thursday, August 2, 2012

Dave's Modular Terrain

Dave was generous a few weeks ago and showed me his collection of minis - HOLY metal minis! He's got the goods - and seemingly most is painted.

As I've mentioned before Dave is tremendous at converting board games into mini versions. As well he's working on his own set to be a mini/board game hybrid.

I've been putting off posting these pics 'cause I've wanted to do a write up - however, if I keep waiting, these will never see the light of least on my blog.

However, please post questions about the terrain, models, his game, whatever. Dave frequents my site and I'm sure he would be happy to answer any questions.

Right Dave?


  1. It would be nice to see a whole layout with a game in progress!


    1. Funny, I was just thinking that as I posted this. That I would like to play some BKCII on it.

    2. Todd, besides the pics I'm sending of some games we've played on both terrain setups, you know you're more than welcome to use these modules for BKCII anytime......and hey, how's that painting on those micro-buildings coming along? (got some terrain here that would love to have some zippy new buildings to adorn them) :)))

  2. Nice terrain boards, what are they made out of?


    1. Hi Yorkie!

      The modules pictured in the top photo were made by fixing fabric canvas to production-cut art board. The art board is made of a MDF-like wood product, and are precision cut with exact dimensions and corners, which assured that the modules would fit snugly together as a map w/o gaps. I next applied spray-adhesive to the boards, working with one board at a time, to glue the canvas stretched across each, and when dry, cut off the material at the edges. I think canvas-backed art board might even be available as a single product also, but I attached the canvas myself.

      The next step was to tape out the roads and intersections to my drawn up plans directly onto the canvas surface, as this would allow the natural color of the fabric to render the roads once the boards were colorized with green fabric dye, and when dried enough to allow removing of the masking tape.

      That was the next step, to brush on water-based, green fabric dye, carefully applying the brush over the taped-out road network on each board module, so as not to dislodge the tape. The dye flows into the fabric, and allows an even colorization. Darker green dye was then "flicked" onto the still-wet base green fabric with a paint brush, to create an uneven distribution of drops to simulate different types of surface foliage. The drops diffuse into the surrounding wet fabric, creating a nicely feathered appearance to them.

      Lastly, crop fields, hedges, trees, some forest floors with trees, junk piles (general terrain "scatter"), were all glued directly to the modules. Additional woods sections, hills, and all buildings for a particular game scenario can then be placed amongst the boards already-attached terrain.

      I made these boards over a dozen years ago, but the deal was to ensure exactly fitting sections, and the use of the fabric dye to create the overall appearance, with the masked-out road net being the color of the un-dyed fabric. Of course I had to work up the design for each individual module on paper, so the planned roads would all mesh together at the edges of each section to allow the semi-geomorphic versatility of the setup.

      Yorkie, I hope that gives you an idea of how I made my terrain boards. I've thought of maybe someday static grass covering these modules to update them, but not sure I'll ever get around to that.

      Take care, and best of luck on your terrain and gaming projects!

      Dave Schaffner