Friday, 8 March 2013

Using Resin Vents to Make Texas Barriers

So, recently I bought 25 Assault Marines from forgeworld, in addition to some Meltaguns, flamers and missile launchers (if you couldn't guess, to arm my assault marines.)

I noticed very quickly I was swamped with these small, rectangular prisms that looked a lot like a Texas Barrier to me.

Needless to say, my grey fingers (geddit? Like a gardener's green fingers! Hah.) got to work imediately. How could I turn this

Into this?

Thanks, Dessel Studio for the Image
Well, as it turned out, it wasn't very difficult.

All I needed was:
- a resin vent. (Any size will do - just be consistent.)
- an exacto knife 
- a Pin Vice
- Some Superglue
- a Paper clip.

All of these things, after purchasing FW material, you should have on you anyway.

So, the method is very simple.

Firstly, you cut away the thin excess that actually attaches to the model

I used clippers first, so that I wouldn't slice the resin willy-nilly. If you've every worked with this stuff before, it can be hard to start cutting it, but once you have the downward force necessary, it cuts in an instant. I do reccommend cutting with clippers and then cleaning gently with an exacto knife and a file. Trust the gouges in my thumb.

The next step is to get your Pin vice and drill holes in the piece of resin. These will create holes for you to put small paper clips in (well, rods of paper clip.) to simulate the metal rods used to make cement more resilient.

If you decide that later you want to include battle damage, it may be prudent to also drill holes in the flanks of the barrier to put metal rods in. I'll show you the cool thing you can do with this in a moment.

You should end up with something that looks like this. Note I didn't measure the distances from the metal rods, because I don't think it is important. Of course, if you choose to do this, you will only be judged a little.

The next step is the fun part: Battle damage.
This step requires some careful knife work for a number of reasons:

1. Resin is slippery: Well, it isn't, but knives seem to think so. So you will cut yourself (I guarantee this.) you aren't careful. Remember to exercise caution. (Insert a crude "Cut4bieber" joke if you wish.)

2. It's far, far too easy to go overboard: you may think you're doing something that looks awesome... but when you look at it in six months time you'll say "why did I do that much?". Just limit yourself. IF you think "It just needs this one more little gauge here to be finished", it's probably finished.

3. Think about what material you're sculpting versus what it's meant to represent: Resin cuts smooth, but a krak missile exploding into a piece of cement will leave a different impression. Have a look around the web for suitable source images of damage. I Couldn't find any myself, I'm afraid, but collective google-fu will work (feel free to post them as comments. It would be much obliged.)

In the example off to the right, I've gone a bit overboard. There's a small bullet hole, a direct hit from a krak grenade (right to left respectively.) and then some heavy firefight damage that has worn to the bare stilts of the barriers.

You'll notice in this final example, the damage has worn the barrier down so far that not only is the vertical rod exposed, but both horizontal rods are exposed. This was achieved by doing the damage first, then drilling horizontally, fitting the horizontal rod and then finally fitting the vertical rod

Final step was to glue it to cardboard so that it could be based and painted. You could skip this and simply paint it, but this is your final result.

Enjoy your new piece of terrain!