Friday, 19 February 2016

Homemade flock (not made from Sawdust)

I recently needed some flocking, a quick trip to my FLGS came up negative and none of his distributors carry any. I looked at ordering some direct from Woodland Scenics a shaker bottle would be about $10 plus $36! shipping, ebay not much better.

    I decided I would try my hand at making some. Sawdust seemed to be the most recommended way to go, so I went to my nearby Home Hardware store and got a half a bag of it (a small white wastebin trash bags). Got it home and sieved it (2-3 hours spread over several sessions), a lot of the sawdust was pretty big, about 1/3 of my haul was usuable for flock. I added the paint and it came out OK.

The paint didn't soak into some of the sawdust, the guy did SAY there was some MDF dust in it, I wore a mask.

This is about a third of the sawdust I got, made into flock, the rest is waiting until I see what colour I need next.
 While I waiting for it to dry, I was googling about flock and there was a Youtube video that showed a guy making flock out of something called Rainbow Foam powder. A search found out it used to be made by a company called OASIS, but they dont make it any more :( But all it is WET Floral Foam gound up into a powder :). Another search showed that WALMART carries WET Floral Foam Bricks, a single brick is $4 and a triple pack $8.

I picked up a single brick for testing.

I was in a Dollarama (a Canadian dollar store chain) and they had some WET Floral Foam bricks for $1.25, a tiny bit smaller than the Walmart one but at 1/3 the price, so I picked up a couple. They behaved the same way as the more expensive ones, except they faintly smell like feces when first wetted.

Ran it over a grater to get a mess. I would suggest using a dust mask at this point (or do it outside), it doesn't produce much dust, but the dust it does produce is very fine.
Grater and 1 brick grated

   Add 1 cup of water (250ML) to the stuff and knead it for 2-3 minutes, it looks a lot like wood pulp, if there is any un absorded water keep kneading or pour it off, you want no liquid water in the mix.
The above amount with water added and kneaded I use a washing glove as its reusable and easier to don.

    Add paint (the stuff is very dark so make your paint lighter than you think you'll need), I then worked it in with my gloved hand (about 5 minutes).

   Then spread it out on on a wax paper covered cookie sheet and let it dry (my first batch took almost 3 days, but I added way too much water).  When dry (with 1 cup of water about 36 hours) I pushed it it through a strainer with holes the size of window screen.

   I then pushed it through another finer strainer. You can skip the first sieve and just proceed with this step, if you want the fine powder.
The tiny yellow flecks are from sawdust contamination I sieved it into a bucket that I had used to sieve sawdust and not cleaned throughly enough afterwords.
 The second sieving brings it close to Woodland Scenics Fine turf size.

A sample of W.S Fine Turf

One brick made maybe half of a Woodland Scenics Spice bottle worth, or maybe the small bag size.

Thursday, 11 February 2016

Big tree foliated

Following up on my previous post here, is what the tree looks like covered in non-clumping clump foliage:


The stripping pad is so covered, I can probably use something less expensive and easier to work with, the stripping pad is very difficult to cut and messy. 

I think it would look much better flocked.

Monday, 8 February 2016

Big Trees

   The trees I have are fine for my 20mm figures but are a bit small for my 28mm, so I decided to see if I could make some.

   A couple of years my local games store was in need of some sturdier tree, they had the "Lichen plopped on a twig" type. So I whipped up a few and presented them to the store.

Here are a couple of pictures of them in use:

In a game of Bolt Action

In a game of War Machine
They look OK and are sturdy as hell, but are not the best looking trees I have ever seen.

So as a test piece I made another armature.

Cut some blobs of Heavy duty scouring pads:

Stuck them onto the armature:

Tested it next to a 28mm figure:

Went to cover it in clump foliage, only to find out I didn't have too much left, asked my Friendly Local Gaming Store to order me some, only to find out none of his distributors carry any, so I went to woodland scenics to order some, $20 for the big bag plus $36 for shipping so $56 U.S. Screw that! I thought. I'll make my own.

I may have over done it though:
Each of these bags contains roughly the same amount that is in the small bag of woodland scenics clump foliage, this cost me less than $20 CDN to make.

Now I have to add the clump foliage to the tree.