Terrain Boards Gallery
This page is the final part of this project (until I make more boards!) and a bit of a review of the results and how well they have worked.... To see the construction of this please refer back to the first and second parts of this series of articles. For more pictures of the boards in use please go to the Battle reports section of this site where they have been used a bit.
It has been over a year since I finished them and I have used used them a few times and had time to think about how well they work. Making 16 boards each with different styles and features meant that there are some odd ones of out and I will continue to tweak the boards as I use them more. Because the boards are all quite unique, there is a limited number of combinations that I can use the boards for. I realised this when I constructed them and that is the trade off between having generic boards and fully featured boards, and I went for somewhere in the middle.
The boards have remained reasonably durable but I have lost a couple of the interlocking teeth. I don't know if this is caused by me accidentally cutting into the rubber when I was constructing the boards or not. I've alawys thought that if the teeth become problematic then I can chop them all off and just butt the boards together. They are heavy enough that they shouldn't slide around too much if that was the case. Luckily I have a good place to store them where they are out of the way and can be stored flat and this should help extend the life of them and make the investment in time and $$ worthwhile. I think that if you are planning to make terrain boards, then storage of the boards is something worth considering before you start.
Where to next? I would like to add some large coast/river boards where i can have a very wide river (eg 1foot wide) using 2 separate boards joined together and also use those pieces as a coast line. I'm still not 100% happy with how some of the terrain pieces such as woods and BUAs have to sit on top but I dont know how to make this work at this point. Any new boards will need to be started soon otherwise the materials I used won't match, such as paint and flock which will get used up or dry out! Another consideration on whether or not I make more is the weight, as the 5mm MDF is pretty light when its only a couple of boards but once you have 16, they are very heavy to transport around.
Click on the thumbnails to see the full sized image. Note these are about 4 times large than real so it isn't very flattering!
Test field tile
This tile was a bit of a test bed and I used to try out different flock for the fields and also tried to create a slightly sloping area where the fields are. The second photo shows some of the different coloured fields that were added. I had some issues with the flock and I had to glue down a couple of layers of flock to get the enough coverage.
This was also the first board I tried drybrushing the flock after the glue had dried to break up the large green areas, but it was a bit heavy handed with the paint. However this has turned into a good looking board and the crossroads work well.
This board has come out very well with the variety and shape of the fields looking great. My only criticism is that (like some of the other fields boards), it is very busy visually and can give the impression of lots of cover in a game.
The ploughed fields were made with a fine toothed saw blade from a coping saw which was dragged across a thin layer of sealant. First I smoothed the sealant and left approximately 2mm thickness before dragging the saw blade across it (holding it on each end).
Small Lake board
This board shows some of the benefits of having a terrain board system with the ability to have recessed features. I like the the fact that the board can have a relatively useless lake and rocky ground sunk into the board but it doesn't have to have a big impact during a game.
The water still needs few more layers to increase the depth of it but I ran out at the time.
While still not completey happy with this board, the finished version is still good. The runway doesn't look quite right until airfield buildings are added to it. I will add a tarmac runway in a similar style to the roads which were made for this board which can still on top when needed and I think this will help a lot.
Sunken road board
This board has come out very well and its nice to be able to take advantage of using a board and create sunken features. I think it is still missing something and is a bit of an orphan (maybe another similar style board) but it is still very pleasing.
A board that combine a couple of large features with the roundabout making the board look different. Since creating the board I have my doubts as a modern roundabout is really a 20th century invention and a think a simple crossroads would be better.
The pictures show the layout with the hill close to the actual roundabout. The plan was originally to have a town based around the roundabout but that became too difficult during construction as space for the town wasn't allowed for. During the construction there was a problem with the flocking and flock on the hill clumped together for some reason, and you can see a lump of it in the middle picture. In the third picture you can see patches created by the drybrushing which look a bit funny in this picture, but are fine (and more subtle) on the actual board.
The board was designed to have a town with outlining fields. However this was forgotten during the construction and the hedges along the roads means that town bases can't be placed there. This was a problem with a number of boards as I didn't factor in where towns would go when I glued all the hedges down. Regardless the board looks very good and with a bit of repositioning it will make for a very nice tile when a town is placed on it (once some of the hedges are removed).
A couple of versatile boards and I think every set of boards needs a few blank boards which can be used for creating open spaces or sticking some of the larger terrain pieces on. Certainly with some of the other boards I created, having some open spaces is very handy. The corner road is handy to link other boards together and it was kept uncluttered so that a town could be placed on the board.
Another benefit of having terrain boards is the ability to create water features which can be realistically recessed into the board rather than sitting on top. Also roads and bridges look much better when they are higher than the river, rather than the same height. The bridges I used are from Timecast and I cut into the board to allow them to be recessed and this helps protect them from damage (although one has cracked in storage).
The river banks were cut with a sharp knife and then sculpted and painted. The final effect is very good but I could add a couple more layers of resin water to increase the depth and create a smoother surface.
River and hill tile
A nice looking board with allows me to model a stream flowing around the base of a hill and create a very picturese looking board. I think this board really shows the adavantages of terrain boards and the ability to create terrain which is influenced by other terrain pieces.
Also something different can be done with the rivers including mini islands, crossings, jetties etc.
Third river board
This board is another that has come out well but could still be improved on. My original plan was to have a town with a river flowing through the middle and a small jetty etc, but I never completed the town part or found a way to integrate the two well, and still have a removeable buildings. The banks of the river in places haven't been detailed and were just painted to blend in.
I think the next logical step is to make a custom base on the board with a fixed dock and roads but with removeable buildings. Or I just add fixed towns to the boards.....
Corner river tile
This board was another one that I wanted to keep simple so that there is room for other terrain pieces such as hills or woods. The board can also be used to get the river to run off the table or change direction.