Tuesday 14 August 2012

All Along The Watchtower...

Hi, All!

Lieutenant Boddington leads redcoats further into the ruins of Ah-Pul-Sh'Napps

It's been a few weeks since my last post. Sorry!

The unpainted tower, constructed from foam, DAS and a 7" 45rpm single...

As promised, I've put Rolf Harris' Two Little Boys to good use. So here it is, buried beneath a ruined watchtower...

The first coat of paint...

This piece was constructed using the same techniques as in my previous posts. The walls are foam, inscribed with pencil. DAS and chunks of foam were used to land-fill the ground floor.

The walls are highlighted and grit is applied to the ground.

After the walls were highlighted, the ground was covered with PVA and grit, painted and flocked with static grass.

Wooden floors and moss are added.

I added broken wooden floors to the tower. Although wood wouldn't survive the centuries in a ruined city, I wanted to add a little colour and make the tower a bit more interesting. Forunately, I had a few left over bits and pieces of balsa planks and boards already prepared from my Leadwood project.

A trooper guards the latest find...

I've also begun work on the remains of the city walls. I plan to have three or four pieces of these. These will be topped with ramparts and stone walkways when they're done.

A long piece of foam was inscribed on both sides.

In order to save time, I started this part of the project by preparing a big piece of foam as stonework. This can be cut into pieces as I require them. Needless to say, this was rather boring...

The first pieces are cut and shaped.
The pieces of wall were cut to shape, details of damage were added, then they were glued and pinned together. For the music lovers amongst you, the 12" record in this case is "Now is the Hour... For Me To Sing To My Friends In New Zealand" by Hank Snow... I know... I know... I hadn't heard of him either. Aren't charity shops a treasure trove of discovery...

A stairway is cut, sanded, inscribed and added to the wall.
I've added a stairway to this piece. There will also be pieces of street and broken walls when this piece is done...

So there you go. The Lost City of Ah-Pul-Sh'Napps continues to grow.

In other news, I've received some rather splendid British Lancers from Empress Miniatures and some excellent new characters from Reaper Miniatures. Watch this space...

More of all this soon!

"So who do you think they were keeping out with all these walls, Professor?"

All the Best!


  1. Fantastic looking models, you make that look easy when I know for a fact it's a time consuming and laborious process.


    1. Thank you, Matt.

      Yes - certain elements of these projects can be somewhat mind-numbing but the trick is to keep your inner eye fixed on the final result. Not always easy, I admit.

      Glad you like my work!

      All the Best.

  2. Another triumph Sir! I love the collapsed floors, just wonderful.

    1. Why thank you, Sir! Always a pleasure to hear from you!

      More bits soon...

  3. Wonderful and entertaining as ever, Colonel! I love the way you manipulate static grass. Does yours come in rolls? The only stuff I've been able to find here seems to do so, but then I'm not sure how you avoid it looking too uniform, flat and, well, "static" in that case, although the use of tea-leaves was wonderful (I found Sainsbury's value brand did indeed have fabulous bits of stalk in there. By God - and some people drink the stuff!). My nephew's airport now has grassy patches. Boulders etc. will be on their way, following your directions, and when I can get the little blighter off his X-Box!
    Can't wait to see your entire terrain when it's all done. Thanks again!

    1. Thank you, Genna. Great to hear from you again.

      I use 'Woodland Scenics' static grass. It comes in jars with a 'shaker' type lid. Most model railway stores and hobby shops should be able to get it - or you can buy it online.

      I use three different tones: I start with dark green, add light green, and then finally harvest gold. I do all three tones in varing depths and patches, all at once onto a single coating of PVA glue. Obviously, this results in a mixture of tones left over when you shake off the excess - I keep this in a separate jar labelled 'blend'. I use this for smaller pieces and the bases of my figures.

      Glad you found suitable crap tea! I'd love to see the airport.

      Keep in touch!

    2. Super! Thanks for that. You are most helpful. That grass sounds much more like the ticket, I must say. Will certainly keep you posted and send you pictures once things start "taking off"!

  4. Looking great Joe! I am looking forward to engaging you over these ancient edifices with my Prussians, who are very nearly done!
    I'm also can't wait to start carving up the foam myself too.
    Once I get this weekend out the way, I'll be all go!

    1. I can just see the 'Professor' and his 'Safari Guide' being the head of a Colonial Gentleman's Club trying to keep the evil machinations of their 'Prussian/Zenadarian' foe at bay, in darkest Ah-Pul-Sh'Napps!

    2. Can't wait to have at your Prussians, Scott!

      Hope you fared well at Call To Arms this weekend. It was nice to drop in this morning and have a look around.

      Be prepared - I have lancers!

  5. You made a wonderful work on it! Really impressive!

  6. Love it. Wish I had the patience to make terrain. Seems all I ever do are minis. Fine job sir. :)

    1. Thanks, Joseph.

      As I commented above, if you have a fairly good idea of what the final piece will look like, the patience is usually not too hard to summon up. I used to scrap projects all the time because I couldn't find the will to cary on - I must have destroyed hundreds of dollars of materials! But once I had finished a few good bits and discovered the techniques I wanted to use (see the older Wild West models that preceeded Leadwood, at the bottom of my Leadwood page) it became much easier to visualise what I was creating, and therefore easier to stay on track.

      That said, big machines like HMSW Gargantua are much more of an uphill slog than terrain!

      Looking forward to seeing what you come up with!

      Thanks for your comments, Sir.