Them bones

Them bones…

warning-bonesThese are a bunch of random bits — the back row, far left, is from a Grenadier “Action Art” set, while the back row far right is an idol from the Grenadier AD&D blister “Hill giants”; the two smaller piles in the back row are troll bones from a Warhammer boxed set that included several really cool items of scenery.  The dragon skull is from a Grenadier box of swamp monsters, I believe it was the Fantasy Lords or Dragon Lords set that replaced the AD&D swamp monsters set.  These are all nice warnings that could be left out by monsters or cultists or whatever, warning adventurers to stay away (or more likely luring them in).

When I got a recast of the Minifigs skeleton cart, I was really conflicted about whether to use the bone pile or the coffin as the cargo, and hit on the idea of making an extra copy of each out of Sculpey.  In the end I made a lot of coffins loosely based on the original, both open and closed, and also some copies of the skeleton that goes in the coffin, as well as piles of bones.  The copies came out pretty poorly, which is fine, since my goal was just to get something useful for placing on a battlemat when the adventurers happen to be in a crypt, tomb, or catacomb.


Closed coffins — the grey ones could be stone sarcophagi.


“Opened” coffins, with bones inside. The center one in the back row has his arms folded across his chest. I realized when I was almost finished painting them that I could repose the skeletons by selectively painting them.


And some plain skeletons to lay about on the ground. The dark grey one is actually the first mini I ever bought. At one time he held a sword aloft, but his arm repeated broke, and his legs broke at the ankle, and now he is casualty marker for fire-ball victims or just a dusty skeleton. The guy next to him is from the Tomb of Spells, and also broke at the ankles many times so he’s now lying down. I added a few bits and bobs to the base so looks like a dead adventurer.

I already posted some completely scratch-built sarcophagi, but my favorite one is the plastic model from HeroQuest, which I painted to help bring out the details:

HQ-tombI made some copies of the top to use as effigies.  Here’s one more shot of the original:

HQ-tomb-2And the four copies I made out of Sculpey:

effigiesThey can lay on top of the stone coffins above, or sit on the floor as crypt-covers.  My duplication process (which is just pressing the object into one lump of Sculpey, then baking it, and then using that as a “press mold” for more copies) leaves some detail out, which gives a nice wear & tear effect.

Published in: on February 19, 2014 at 10:30 am  Comments (5)  
Tags: , , ,

The URI to TrackBack this entry is:

RSS feed for comments on this post.

5 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Got some major nostalgia from that Hero Quest tomb. That was my elementary school gateway into these crazy games.

    Have you had a chance to check out the Reapers Bones (I or II)? I’m not usually into unpainted minis (due to lack of talent on my part), but I did order from the last KS to get a hold of the mice miniatures.

    • I already started making my own scenery by the time the Reaper bones came out. And too broke to support the KS. 😦 I did get a few from someone who didn’t need all the stuff they sent though. A nice gravestone with a swarm of bats, and some adventurers. I’ve seen the sarcophagus they do and it looks nice too.

  2. Hi Mike,

    I just love these miniatures and the last few posts you’ve been presenting. My Brother and I grew up with Heritage USA’s Caverns of Doom and Crypt of the Sorcerer paint ‘n’ play sets. That was the start of our long term gaming habit.
    Now, I make my living as an RPG writer, illustrator and publisher (The Mutant Epoch RPG). Of course, I still do a lot of tabletop fantasy gaming, and have 4 kids who all have their own characters and love mini gaming more than xbox gaming. Thanks so much for doing this blog!

    • Thanks for the kind words! I just started introducing my own 8 yr old to the Caverns of Doom etc. and she is hooked.

  3. […] Them bones […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Wayne's Books

Game Gallery ~ Photo Blog

Ann's Immaterium

Writing, gaming, miniature painting, physical culture, and other dark procrastinations.


Collecting, modelling, painting and wargaming in 28mm

Dragons Never Forget

What were we talking about again?

This Stuff is REALLY Cool

Young scholars enthusiastic to tell you about COOL RESEARCH STUFF

Fail Squad Games

Tabletop games and adventures

Chuck Wendig: Terribleminds

Hey Did You Know I Write Books

Save Vs. Dragon

"We are here on Earth to fart around. Don't let anybody tell you any different."--Kurt Vonnegut


Old School Roleplaying and related musings

Hobgoblin Orange

My return to the world of miniature figure painting and RPGs

The Book Reviews You Can Trust!

Dawn of the Lead

Miniature wargaming and the occasional zombie News

The latest news on and the WordPress community.


Miniature Motivation

Take On Rules

Jeremy Friesen - a poor soul consumed by gaming.

Age of Dusk

Roleplaying, reviews and associated paraphernalia.

Roll to Disbelieve

"We are here on Earth to fart around. Don't let anybody tell you any different."--Kurt Vonnegut

A Book of Creatures

A Complete Guide to Entities of Myth, Legend, and Folklore

Making the Past

Diary of an apprentice swordsmith

Ancient & Medieval Wargaming

Using De Bellis Antiquitatis, with the odd diversion...

Riffing Religion

Prophets should be mocked. I'm doing my part.


Magazine of Thrilling Adventure and Daring Suspense

2 Warps to Neptune

Surveying the Gen X landscape and the origins of geek

Dagger and Brush

Miniature painting, wargaming terrain tutorials, reviews, interviews and painting guides


A lair for gaming, sci-fi, comics, and other geekish pursuits.

I bought these adventure and review them so you don't have to.

9th Key Press

Maps, supplements, and inspiration for roleplaying games.

The Rambling Roleplayer Archives

This site is no longer being updated. Check out the new site at

The History Blog

History fetish? What history fetish?

Sheppard's Crook

The occasional blog of a closet would -be wargamer and modeller


A catch all of books, games, and sundry other interests

The Weekly Sift

making sense of the news one week at a time


Just another site

%d bloggers like this: