Sunday, 16 October 2011

The Great Deboubt

Scenery of the Day

I was sitting in the painting shed the other day, enjoying a coffee and a chat with my significant other, when I spied something useful sitting on the shelf.

Noting my devilish grin, Kat followed my gaze with a grin of her own and asked 'What is it this time ?'

Some spare little cardboard planter boxes for our gardening adventures had caught my eye, and transformed themselves into a new vision.

If I was cut them up and invert them, they would make brilliant towers for the corners of a Great Dedoubt, no doubt.

On to the pictures :

Starting with a flat canvas board, I have glued an inverted cut-up piece of seedling planter on each corner. Add in some walls about 10mm high from roughly modelled air-dry clay (the cheap stuff). Glue some matchsticks and 50mm mini popsicle sticks around the place. Finally gloop on a mixture of PVA and kitty litter rocks. Gloop isnt a real word as far as I know, but it does work in this context.

Each side of the reboubt is modelled as a fleche (arrowhead), in the Vauban style. The seedling planter shape is clearly visible here on the right and in the background. I have then made an overhead cover from popsicle sticks and 'glooped' up the gaps with PVA-kitty litter. Looks pretty trash so far, lets see what we can make it into.

Starting to come together now. Nice. The seedling planter towers are completely non-historical, but strangely plausible at the same time.

A closer view. I dont want this one to look too clean. I want it to look used - possibly the ruins of an older medieval or renaissance structure that has been bashed and battered over the years, and continuously added to with improvised structures.

A view out over the killing fields from the gun battery position inside the redoubt. The internals of the reboubt are purposely measured up to allow 30mm base frontage units to fit neatly inside. All my naps are on 30mm base frontage, as recommended by the Republique rules. Same same with Empire based units.

Interior view of the side walls. No detail on the side wall in this case, I will let the paint do the talking for this one. I have made sure there are loopholes for musketry firing around the top edges of the walls.

Another firing loophole on the other flank. This one looks a bit more organised than the previous side. Again, just matchsticks, bits of broken wood, and PVA-kitty litter gloop. If making your own, try not to work to a plan too much - instead just start adding extensions to your redoubt, and let the gloop take the model wherever it is going to take it. Go with it.

Slap on some paint, dry brush on the detail layer, and get it on the battlefield. Its an improvised position, so no time for niceties here. I have filled the remainder of the base here with PVA-beach sand mixture to provide the base texture. Also added some ground up peat moss as clumps of mud. When painting - splodge on some darker patches and add the odd pock mark for all the cannon balls that have struck the place over the centuries.

Disaster !  Once again the defenders of the accursed Great Redoubt have been  overcome ... and raging fires engulf the structure where the gun battery once had stood.

So there is another scenery of the day. From concept to battlefield in .. probably a couple of hours of workbench time.

Total cost ?  Not quite sure exactly, but certainly under the magic $2 mark.

Gotta love $2 scenic accessories that can happen in a day.

Please have a go at knocking up your own speculative defensive positions, and let me know how it went.

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