Monday, January 31, 2011

Plaster Hulk- Warehouse Update.

I've exclusively working on this for close to three weeks now, despite one epic set back I was fantasizing I could get this done by the end of month. Considering the last one took me about 6 weeks start to finish and this one uses one hell of alot more plaster, it was definitely a pipe dream. I told myself as of Feb 1st, I'd crack down on getting everything reading for Adepticon, so this is it for awhile until I finish everything for the my Legends of the High Seas event, and whatever (if anything) I end up doing for the WFB events I am playing in. I'm anxious to get some skirmish play in on this soon, so expect a return to it in March, once I get everything I need done Acon this month.

(Pretty good sense of scale here, this thing seems plenty big for a 2 X 2 board)

As for the Epic set back- I had attempted to layout the entire floor here as one 12'' x 18" piece. I've seen plenty of large layouts..but with my worries about my inconsistent bricks ( the depth). I've been building all my floor upside down, (or face down) so I get a nice flush surface. I met with a variety of problems along the way..main, certain bricks from certain Hirst molds are not exactly "1" inch (or they dont cast that way for me) we are talking anywhere from a 1/32 to 1/64 inconsistency that only really becomes noticeable when you layout a long line of say the "pipe grate pieces" horizontally against says the "welded floor plates" these minor differences really exacerbate themselves over say 18" so I had to start sanding the blocks which is no exact science trust me.

After several days of messing with the completed floor, where I broke it a couple times flipping it over as the solid piece had considerable weight, I settled on assembling it face up on a solid piece on 1/8 MDF. Now I know better than this..but the reality didn't dawn on me until it was too late.

(Walls for all these rooms are yet to be assembled, the two black tiles are addition rooms)

When I put the glue on the board, wet...I should have glued the actual pieces individually and not the board, let the pieces dry one at a time and fitted the next piece. I just spread glue all over the board and dropped the pieces down...well...what happens when you soak a 1/8 piece of absorbent fiber board with watered down wood glue??...IT WARPS!! a Son of a Bitch..the thing bowed up, allot. damn thing curved like a mongol composite short bow...even with probably 5 pounds of 1/2 " plaster floor on it the warp was keeping my floor from fitting together nicely as it should..I threw another board on it tapped it tight and put about 20 pounds of weight on it to flatten it out while dried...The end result was "ok" but the bow still existed enough to make the walls not squarely sit on it plus it just wasnt as tight as it should be for all this work on the single piece. I took a deep breath and said #$%&## THIS!. back to the drawing board and choose to write off over 216 floor 9 tiles a cast...that was about 24 individual mold casts..I have duplicate molds of the main mold needed and with two other different ones was casting 4 at time but still it took me about 8 hours to remake all the pieces I needed to get back on track. I decided to re base the stuff on 1/8 inch black foam..(much better)make my largest single piece 9 x 6 and fit them together, just like the Dungeon piece.

The end result was much better, and here are the current results..I've still have casting to do as I am short wall pieces so I may actually get the casting done this week so I can return the borrowed molds. Here is the scary thing- I will have gone thru an entire 50 pound box of plaster on this project (sans maybe 1 or 2 lbs left over) I started my first Hirst experiments in 2008 with 3/4 of a box my pal Bill gave me, that lasted me all the way thru the end of the Dungeon construction in 2010. I shot thru this entire box in a month, Plaster Hulk, indeed.

(Access corridor, these bulkhead valves will run the length of this hall)

In other news I got bunch of new Figs from Cobblestone Casting, and Troll Forged for Sci Fi Skirmish, and some new Pirate stuff from Black Cat, I'm still struggling with extra long delivery times from the UK, including missing packages..this Snow Apocalypse isnt helping.

(Once its all built there are still a ton of painting bells and whistles to get this finished.
I figure 40 hours easy to many hours in so far?, Dont ask....I quit keeping track because I didnt want to know.)


Hobby Horse said...

Wow, that is just awesome. The 12' means 12 feet, not inches right? So it's a huge board. And you are building it by yourself. And you are cursing yourself for getting it wrong! Cut yourself some slack, this is one of the most impressive things I have seen in a long while. Just one question, where will you put it when it's finished, it looks a bit too big to slide under the bed.

Anonymous said...

That's a whole lot of work, and the whole warping, sounds like a right bastard.

If it's any consolation, that setup is looking mighty, mighty fine already.

Porky said...

It looks absolutely incredible! The corridors are big too, but they're a great contrast with the open space.

Chicago Terrain Factory said...

Can't wait to see this in real life.

John@Plastic Legions said...

@ Hobby...12 feet!? LOL! man, that's just typo on my part..the floor piece I was talking about was 12 inches by 18 inches..which is still quite large when it comes to barely glued together 1 inch bricks, I could do 8 foot by 4 foot project if I kept going but this entire thing is 2 feet by 2 at 4 times the size a full layout like this would take me probably at least 6 months and that slaving working on it daily.
Thanks for the comments guys!

Tim said...

Hi John,

Just wanted to compliment you on a job well done! Just out of curiosity, what kind of skirmish wargame are you going to play on this board?

Steve said...

It really does look incredible! It will be great to see it in person.

John@Plastic Legions said...

Thanks Tim, although is far from complete, (I estimate about half way)
I'm working on my own ruleset for sci-fi skirmish which I'll be talking about soon, an amalgamation of a variety of games new and very old that I like. I'll be talking about soon, right here.

ZeroTwentythree said...

Wow, that looks amazing!

Tim said...

@ John, looking forward to it. I'll be dropping in on your site from time to time!


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