Ok, so it has been, what, two months since my last update on this tutorial? Yeah, I know, I REALLY suck at this blogging thing… Anyway, I have some real life things that kept me very busy lately, and so the terrain piece just sat on my table gathering dust… until now. This update will be kind of quick, mostly because I did not get a too much done tonight, but I still want to post what I did finish to hopefully motivate me to finish this bad boy. Here we go…
At the end of part two, we had just started detailing the piece. Now, the only real rule on detailing is that there really is no such thing as too much. I stopped where I did in order to not make things too complicated for this tutorial, but I could have easily gone much farther with the detailing. It really is the details that make the difference in terrain, and really take things to the next level. I will probably still do a little more embellishment with plastic bits once I have added the roof sections. Maybe I will even whip up one or two scratch built goodies. As I have said before, I never plan too much because I like to be a little surprised by the way things take shape as I go.
Anyway, the construction details basically consist of cutting lengths of popsicle sticks and gluing them all over the place. I glue strips along the bottom of each floor, around doors as door frames, and in random spots here and there to simulate support framing. Just glue them everywhere… Once the piece is textured and painted, it will look really cool.
One thing I like to do that might seem trivial, but I think adds a lot to the piece, is I also glue strips on the INSIDE of the doors as well, completely framing out the door. I did not always do it that way. when I first started, I would just glue the frame piece to the outside of the door, then texture on the inside pieces, but I think doing it this way looks much better. This is what I mean…
It may seem simple, but it’s all these simple things that add up to make really big things.
Now, you might also notice, in the bottom of that picture, the mount piece for my modular bridges. The mounts are actually really simple. I make them from two different sizes of bass wood strips. 1/4 x 1/4 inch, and 1/4 x 1/8 inch. I mark the length of the 1/4 x 1/4 strip to the same length as the door frame, specifically, two inches long. Then I cut a one inch piece and then two 1/4 inch pieces from the 1/4 x 1/8 strip. I glue the 1/4 inch pieces to the ends of the 1/4 x /14 section, and the one inch piece to the center. If measured correctly, that should leave a 1/4 gap on either side of the one inch piece. Cut 1/4 inch notches out of the 1/4 x 1/4 piece where the 1/4 inch gaps are, and the mount is done. All we need to do is glue it to the wall, nice and centered on the door. Once it is glued to the wall, we are going to put a pin through it for a little added strength. On the back side of the wall, I used another piece of bass wood as a support for the floor. Usually, I would use balsa wood since the floors should not ever need to support much weight, but since I knew I was going to put a bridge mount here, I used the bass wood for extra support. First, I drilled a hole with my pin vise drill.
Once the hole was drilled all the way through, I used a straightened paper clip with some super glue on the end for my pin. Here is the finished product.
It should be good enough to support the bridge and hopefully not come apart with casual table bumping.
The next step could, and honestly, probably should be done much earlier, but I always just seem to wait until the last minute to do it. We need to roughen up the edges of our base. It is really simple to do with hard board. Just turn the piece upside down, and use a utility knife to score line around the underside of the piece. The line does not have to be straight, in fact, it is probably better and more natural looking the less straight it is.
Once we have our score all the way around the base, we will just take a pair of wide pliers, I like kleins personally, and bend the outer edge upward. this creates a nice, rough, layered edge that looks pretty natural.
Once we have done this all the way around the base, the piece will really start to look like something.
Well, that is about it for today. My intent is to make roof sections, do finishing details and texture the piece in the next few days. Hopefully, there will be an update but the end of the week, and I might even be able to paint and finish the piece by the end of the weekend. Only time will tell!
As always, comments and criticisms are always welcome.