Wednesday, March 1, 2017

28mm Hedgerow Tutorials

I've been playing World War 2 games for years now and most of the games I've played would take place around D-Day in France. One of the biggest issues the allied soldiers ran into was hedgerows. I have zero hedgerows and I've been meaning to make some for years and I decided that today was the day.

To start I dug out some of the MDF strips that I had my brother cut for me years ago when I was building barbed wire sections. These hedgerows will be the last things I use the MDF strips on as I've run out of them. I took some sandpaper and hit the edges to make them nice and smooth.

The next step was to get some Styrofoam pieces, I had a large block and cut the pieces I needed, and hot glue them to the MDF. You don't have to have them exactly perfect shapes, when was the last time you saw two trees that are identical. Once all the Styrofoam is glued down I hit it with some brown paint. Remember that you cannot use spray paint on Styrofoam because it will melt it.

I recommend that you buy these big bottles of paint from your local Wal-Mart instead of using your nicer hobby paint when doing projects like this. A standard bottle of Vallejo has 17 ml of paint for around three dollars. These big boys have 236 ml of paint for around the same price!! While working on this project I finished off my first bottle of brown paint which I purchased years ago.

Now that the Styrofoam is sealed in with brown paint I add some PVA glue mixed with water to the MDF board and then add some small rocks to the base. Once the PVA has dried I hit the base again with brown paint to seal the rocks in real nice.

Once all of this has dried I cover the Styrofoam pieces with more PVA and go flocking crazy. My flock is a mixture of around one part forest green accent, green grass fine turf, some light green I mixed up years ago and finally, four parts of fine turf burnt grass. To give it a little more bang for your buck I add in a little bit of autumn flock, just a tiny bit because I like it. Once all the Styrofoam is covered in flock I let it dry.

At this point, I already like how it looks like a terribly maintained row of bushes but we're making hedgerows so I get out the hot glue gun and cover the tops of the Styrofoam with a mixture of forest and olive green bushes. I cover the top of each piece and also go down the sides about a third of the way down. A couple of spots on the bushes I didn't like the look of the gaps between each piece of Styrofoam so I'd use some of the olive green bushes that blend in perfectly.

Gluing the bushes on the first piece took me an hour which is way more than I thought it would. The next took less time and I probably got each done in about a half an hour. The biggest issues I had was the little hot glue spider webs all over the place. I had to pick a lot of them out of the bushes. When I was done in some spots when looking up at the hedgerow, I could see some of the hot glue but this is easily fixed with some PVA glue and regular flock.

At this point, I pulled out more watered down PVA glue and added some flock to the bases. I know you're thinking why did he cover the base with rocks if he was going to flock it and why did he only flock the bushes but not the base at the same time? Well to answer these questions all I can say was I changed my mind half way through. I was going to add a tiny amount of flock to the base of the bushes and keep the rest as rock but in the end, I wanted it all flocked. So I flocked all the bases and allowed them to dry. When dry the last step is to make up a ton of watered down PVA glue and coat everything, the base, the Styrofoam and the buses. This will keep everything in place and believe me if you're going to use these the bushes will fall off.

Overall these look great to me and I look forward to gaming with them. The MDF and, glue and paint cost very little. The time involved while not horrible was enough to make some people shy away from this. I had the TV going in front of me and enjoyed the time I spent making these so it was worth it to me. Let me know if you like them and happy gaming!

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