Molding Rocks

tales_of_alamut

Hi all, welcome to another Tales From Alamut!

Hell Dorado is a game that can require a lot of terrain. Through the vagaries of the terraformation phase, a battlefield can potentially have as many as 30 points of terrain to place. This means players may need to rely on the generic elements like rocks, stalagmites, and the like to fill the board. Today I want to look at the method I have used to produce some realistic rock terrain pieces using the silicone molding technique I used previously to make stalagmite terrain. You can check out that tutorial here.

Because I wanted to mold real rock, I needed to find some! Raiding the garden turned out to be a futile effort, turning up nothing of suitable size. In the end I visited the local landscaping supply depot; for a modest cost you can purchase large rocks for gardens. I walked away with a bag of rocks suitably sized for terrain.

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As in my previous article, I used Lego® to create the bounds of mold,and poster putty to hold the rock down securely

 Playing a litle bit of Tetris can maximise the number of pieces that can be set together.

Playing a litle bit of Tetris can maximise the number of pieces that can be set together.

Once the silicone is set and you have removed the master rocks, it’s time to pour. Unlike the thin profiles of the stalagmites in my previous article, bulkier pieces like these will use up a horrendous amount of resin. To make your material go further and keep costs reasonable, you can use cheap materials as a filler.In my case I cut up pieces of polystyrene to fit comfortably inside the mold.

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After pouring the resin and allowing it to cure fully, I popped them out and trimmed up the bases to sit neatly on MDF bases. They were then primed (a little trick here is to prime in different colours, I used black and light grey). I then hit them with the airbrush in succesive shades of grey. The different colored primer gives a subtle variation to the final result, even though the rocks may be painted in exactly the same way. Finally they were flocked to match my new board.

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That’s it! This is a quick and relatively easy method to produce really cool looking rock terrain elements. These examples are 1 point cluster elements, but larger masters can be molded to produce bigger elements, or combine a couple of pieces as a larger field element.

Using silicone and resin can potentially be expensive, but with some efficient use of your materials, a heap of high quality terrain can be produced very quickly and be relatively inexpensive.

Thanks for reading and see you next time

Matt.

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    One Comment

    1. FalkalNo Gravatar
      Posted February 20, 2014 at 1:55 am | Permalink

      So why exactly are you not using… real rocks?

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