Building Bavaria '45 Part Four


Welcome to part four of my journey towards making some buildings to represent Bavaria in 1945. I'm working to a bit of a deadline as I'm booked t begin play testing my Weird War Z rules in eleven days time.  And yes, I am counting, as it was only a week ago that I released I had no suitable buildings at all.  And due to other commitments, truth be told, I've only got nine more days to get this sorted.  Usually something like this would make me rush, but I have no intention of doing so.  I want the results to be worthwhile.  I want them to be something I can be proud of.  I'm pushing myself to try new ways of solving old problems, and I'm doing so because I want to do the best I can. Hard to achieve when you have as small an income as I do.  But if I can pull it off, hopefully someone out there in the world of miniature gaming can get some inspiration and have a go for themselves.  Because if I'm totally honest, I find all this work rather therapeutic.  Which, at the end of the day, is surely what a hobby is supposed to be about, isn't it?

If you'd like to see the earlier parts of this journey, you can do so by clicking on the following links:
Part One
Part Two
Part Three

Of course, the more erudite among you will notice that I have changed the title of this post ever so slightly.  I've called it part four rather than day four. This is simply because I haven't had as much time over the last few days as I had hoped.  The stuff I've been working on has been rather fiddly to say the least.  So rather than put up posts with very little content, I waited until I had something more substantial to show you.

And I have to be honest, I'm rather pleased with the results.  I'd best get on then, hadn't I?

Before I do though, I'd just like to mention the demise of an old friend of mine.  My trusty ball point Z-Grip Med, or Medzy as he became known.  Medzy has been through a lot of scenery with me.  Hecan be seen waiting faithfully at the edge of shot of many photos of my scenery making.  Medzy has been with me since I took the plunge to go ahead and make a some scenery from scratch and blog about it.  Medzy was with me throughout the whole Town with No Name project, that nineteen month gargantuan project of creating a wild west town.  It was therefore with some sadness that he found it all too much and gave up the ghost on me earlier the week as I was bginning to draw out the cardboard cladding for my second building.
 You can see that I hadn't gotten very far at all when this happened!
 Anyway, with a new pen to hand, I began the task of drafting the cladding.  This one was going to be a real test of my skills.  Not only is it choc full of windows, but I designed it to have timber framing on the upper floor and gables.  This was where I would be putting my skills to the test.

In the past I've made timber framed buildings and simply glued on either dowel or strips of cardboard to represent the timber frames.  I'd simply cut a long strip and measure the parts.  Admittedly this is quite a quick way to go about doing things.  But the final result also looks rather haphazard to my eye.  It makes the building look like it's crept out of the pages of a fairy tale book by the Brothers Grimm.  That might be perfectly acceptable for a fantasy setting, but it doesn't quite fit for me.  I want the building to look like it has been made properly and not hastily put together in a ramshackle fashion.

So although it would involve a lot more card wastage, and take an age to cut out, I decided to draw out the framing on the card and cut it out.  You can see some of this in the next photo.  It took about 90 minutes to figure out sizes and measure everything properly, but I was both happy and daunted by the results.
 Of course, the base layer of the cladding was relatively easy to cut out. Measurements are the same as for my foam core shell except that the front and back are 1 mm wider each edge.  This is to compensate for the depth of the card on the side sections.  The side sections are therefore cut flush to the foam core shell.
 And here's an in-progress shot of my work on one long side of the timber framing that will go on the top.
 And much, much later...
 Fast forward another day, and all the sections are ready for gluing.  I should point out that each beam is 2mm wide and these have been cut out of cereal packet card.  Note in particular my two inadvertently abstract Anglo-Saxon helmet sections for the gable ends...!
 Yup, that's a lotta bits of off-cut card!
 Of course, when you become flushed with the success of your cutting, there is always a danger of making a stupid mistake.  Here's mine.  I stuck the first gable end upside down.  Thankfully I was using PVA rather than UHU to affix these pieces.  This meant that I was able to (very) carefully lift it off and reattach it the right way around. A few minutes later would have been fatal...
 I confess I am rather fond of how well this has turned out. So much so I feel a more arty angle shot coming up...
 Of course, both the picture above and the one below show that i still have a long way to go.  I need to edge all the window recesses and make another sixteen windows as I did for the previous building.
 I had time to edge the six windows on the back of the building.  As much as I wanted to carry on, I had to stop.  My back was sore from leaning over my cutting mat and applying pressure to the steel rule whilst cutting out all that timber framing.
Personally, I think it's been time well spent.

It' certainly encouraged to me to keep up with this scratch building.  And I'm not going to give up on ideas in the future.  I love a lot of the MDF kits out there, especially TT Combat.  The sad reality though is I can't afford them at this point in my life. Paying the bills and putting food on the table for my family is more important.  But I can afford to scratch build my own scenery.  It may take longer than making an MDF kit.  It may involve a lot more head scratching to figure out how to achieve the results I want.  But at the end of the day, I'll be able to put stuff on my gaming table with pride.

And there's a heck of a lot to be said about that!

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