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Basing Models

Want to show off your painted figures? Got a cool conversion? Need some ideas?

Basing Models

Postby IMF2000 » Fri Jul 04, 2008 3:50 pm

Basing Models - Sorry if this has been covered before!

It won't be long before I need to do the bases of the models I'm painting so far. Not really too sure on the best way to do this, I have a fair mixture of modelling materials but I'm looking for a reasonably good effect so something better than PVA and sand might be nice.

I have PVA, Scatter Grip, Sand/rocks, flocks, and a few other bits.

If anyone has any ideas / links to pages / photos of good bases with techniques, I'd be really grateful! :D
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Re: Basing Models

Postby LordMalekTheRedKnight » Fri Jul 04, 2008 3:58 pm

IMF2000 wrote:something better than PVA and sand might be nice.

thats me out then. :(
(i just use GW Mixed Sand and PVA glue)

although i think minecome out OK... :)

some things to remember when basing:
- you want the force to look coherent
- you want the bases to match the terrain/boards the army will be fighting on
- you dont want to attract too much attention away from the model itself, or for the colours to clash between the model and the base
- standing models on big rocks etc will affect their height for LOS purposes

hope that helps :)

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Postby Culven » Fri Jul 04, 2008 5:19 pm

I you want a nice effect, try gluing some sand to the base then add patched of flock on top of the sand (after the glue from the sand has dried is best. This will give a little more interest to the base without detracting from the model itself.
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Postby timewizard » Fri Jul 04, 2008 6:03 pm

IMF2000 wrote: If anyone has any ideas / links to pages / photos of good bases with techniques, I'd be really grateful! :D


This is probably the best site I have found for basing miniatures.
http://www.one-ring.co.uk/phpBB2/kb.php ... ticle&k=86

To quote Tim ~ Hope this helps :wink:
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Postby mattjgilbert » Tue Jul 08, 2008 11:40 am

That's a really good artlcle timewizard - good find.

I always give bases the least thought of the whole model :(
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Postby boomstick » Tue Jul 08, 2008 11:56 am

I second that. Some very useful ideas there i think ill put into use. Ive always found basing a useful way of making up for the fact I'm not the best painter in the world, but will always give my models a good and vibrant base that distracts you enough so they start looking pretty good.
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Postby Angelwing » Tue Jul 08, 2008 3:30 pm

Really good article, with one exception: the first picture showing cleaning up the base with a craft knife will end up with a slashed hand. Cut Away From Yourself!!
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Postby conscriptboris » Tue Jul 08, 2008 10:51 pm

the way i do mine is...

- I cut the sprue into little bits and glue a piece to each foot, then attach it to the base.
- I then paint base in PVA and dip in sand.
- Then paint brown
- Then paint lightly with PVA again and dip in static grass.
- Use the end of the brush length ways to pad down the grass a bit!

the sprue on the bottom of the models feet is to make it look like its walking on the ground not through it!

Do a factory process and you can get through them quite quick!

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Postby IMF2000 » Wed Jul 09, 2008 9:48 am

Thanks for all the tips :P
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Postby chromedog » Mon Jul 14, 2008 1:05 pm

Oh, just another thing.

I've found if you're using pva to glue the sand/flock/ ballast down, then a 'top coat' of 50/50 pva/water with a drop of dishwashing liquid helps to seal the surface and keep the scatter on the base. The dishwashing liquid lowers the surface tension and helps the glue slurry to flow around and over the surface, getting into the nooks and crannies to lock stuff in.

Yes, it means the process takes a little longer, but when your bases aren't creating little sandy dandruff piles, you'll thank me.

Just add the static grass AFTER this bit.
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Postby LordMalekTheRedKnight » Mon Jul 14, 2008 2:31 pm

chromedog wrote:I've found if you're using pva to glue the sand/flock/ ballast down, then a 'top coat' of 50/50 pva/water with a drop of dishwashing liquid helps to seal the surface and keep the scatter on the base.
Yes, it means the process takes a little longer, but when your bases aren't creating little sandy dandruff piles, you'll thank me.

i second this^ (although personally i dont add the washing up liquid, just water). :)

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Postby timewizard » Mon Jul 14, 2008 2:47 pm

chromedog wrote:Oh, just another thing. I've found if you're using pva to glue the sand/flock/ ballast down, then a 'top coat' of 50/50 pva/water with a drop of dishwashing liquid helps to seal the surface and keep the scatter on the base. The dishwashing liquid lowers the surface tension and helps the glue slurry to flow around and over the surface, getting into the nooks and crannies to lock stuff in. Yes, it means the process takes a little longer, but when your bases aren't creating little sandy dandruff piles, you'll thank me. Just add the static grass AFTER this bit.


I use either dishwashing soap, or a product called 'jet-dry'. It's nothing more than a wetting agent. It helps to break down the surface tension of the water, allowing it to flow better.
When I flock my terrain pieces, I use a mix of 50% white (PVA) glue, 50% water and a few drops of wetting agent, like chromedog's mix. I find that the extra water helps the glue to stay wet longer over large areas giving me some additional time before I add the flock.
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Postby chromedog » Tue Jul 15, 2008 9:13 am

"wetting agent" is just another term for "surfactant" - something that lowers the surface tension, which the dishliquid will do as well, and it's available in any market, not just hobby stores.

We used to use a "soil wetting agent" on our plants until I realised that a drop of dishliquid would do the same thing - and be cheaper.

My sand bases (40x80 round-ended bikes) were treated this way and the sand coat has the feel of stone, with very little abrasiveness. They were painted and lacquered again and due to the texture, supergluing anything (or epoxy) to them is a cinch.
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