Quick terrain project: walls

I’ve used a lot of different things to make linear obstacles for wargames and D&D minis.  Some old “Castellos” building blocks as walls, model railroader lichen for hedges, and so on.  But with a score or more CDs sitting around, I decided to finally build some walls out of pebbles.

1. Glue pebbles to a CD.

2. Paint CD green.

3. Paint a layer of  watered down “white glue” (PVA) on top of the dry paint.

4. Dip in flock (I mixed a a couple of colors and added about 1 teabag worth of tea to about 2 cups of flock), and tap lightly when dry to let excess fall off.


I made two of these.  I should probably add some more stuff like weeds, rocks, mud, etc. to make the bases a little less boring.  You could also paint your rocks if you want but these were pretty nice looking as they were, and being a bunch of different colors, while unrealistic, makes them more fantastic.

Published in: on October 27, 2011 at 8:19 pm  Comments (9)  

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9 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Very cool.

    Seeing the Microsoft logo on the CD, I have to ask: what was it?

    • I think it was an old Mouse driver. Another one was a copy of Office 97, which I was only able to use while I employed by Kent State University.

      • Ahhh… those simpler days…

        I haven’t been a Windows user for years, but I still miss the Win95/98 era… all those games…

  2. You might get better results with rougher pebbles, such as that used for outdoor path gravel rather than polished ones like the ones I see in a craft store. Also I suggest using beauty bark (I don’t know what you would call it, but it’s those pieces of bark that people put in their outdoor landscaping over dirt to keep the dirt from washing away, control of weeds, and for other reasons). Beauty bark, if washed and dried (especially in a dehydrator), and broken into smaller pieces, makes for great miniature rocks. You do need to paint and seal them of course. But the texture is just right and the material is very cheap, and you can shave and break them into the right shapes. Large single chips of bark sliced in half to make a pair of long, broad, thin pieces work well for boulders. The flat side goes down onto your basing material, such as the CD.

    You might do well to mix up your flock as well. Different texture from putting down kitty litter mixed with PVA and water, or else sand with the same procedure. Do it before you flock, but keep your flocking glue off the dried bumps, for a good result. And paint the exposed rough parts as rocks or sand etc.

    This may be elementary for you, I haven’t read the rest of your blog, so please excuse me if it’s something you already know. Just trying to help!

    • Those are all solid ideas. I have heard of the bark trick and yes it looks great. I kind of like the look of the smooth pebbles, even though it is very unrealistic looking. I definitely need to raise my game regarding flock and base textures. Just don’t have the time/motivation.

  3. As someone that got into wargaming due to terrain building this was cool post for me Mike.

    I really like the idea and the simplicity of the end result. I think I personally would have painted the stones as you mentioned and probably added some small sand or other basing materials along the base of the stone wall just to add some more subtle detail to it. But like I said I am into the terrain aspect maybe even more than the painting which you have seen me start to get into more recently.

    I also liked the idea of the bark from the previous comment. Oddly enough I stole some bark chips from out in front of the hotel I was at this past week and broke some pieces off to use on basing some of my Malifaux models. LOL

  4. Pieces of cork are good. Another old trick from modelbuilding is to use the ceiling tiles – break them apart and glaze them with diluted white glue can make good rock formations.

  5. Very good. What glue did you use on the pebbles?

    • White craft glue (aka PVA or Polyvinyl acetate)

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