Saturday, 8 December 2012

A small divertimento: 1/72 half timbered house

While designing the game table to play the next SDS scenario "Surprise at Kosen", I realized that my miniature buildings were not well suited to play 1:1 skirmish games with my 1/72 figures.
My existing buildings were designed to play Napoleon's Battles (NB) and follow the Built-Up Area concept - see the main web site -. Because real buildings are big and can dominate the battlefield in a wargaming table, the mine are built with a smaller 1/100 scale. This is not a serious problem with NB (or Lasalle) games, where it is clear that the miniature figures are abstractions representing 120 men (in NB) or 20-30 men (in Lasalle). However, in a skirmish game with a 1 man: 1 figure scale, my buildings become significantly smaller and everything seems too strange, because a 1/72 figure (1.80 m tall) looks like a 2.50 m tall giant!
To resolve this mess, I have decided to make a couple of buildings from scratch at 1/72 scale for use in SDS encounters. With my miniature armies fighting mostly in central Europe, it was clear that the buildings should be German-looking, so half timbered houses, ubiquitous in Germany, Austria, France, etc. in Napoleonic times, are obvious candidates. There are in Internet many images showing these houses, and even some miniature websites, as the famous Croebern 1813 site have small tutorials with step-by-step instructions and many pictures.
The materials are 2mm cardboard, white glue, double-side adhesive tape for carpets, wooden matches, self-hardening wall paste, corrugated cardboard for the roof tiles (carefully stored for years!), scissors and a cutter. Below you can see a first graphical summary of the first steps, as the buildings are now halfway through construction).
1) By using Powerpont and its drawing shapes, a 1:1 template is drawn. The real total height of a typical napoleonic 1/72 figure is used as a guide.

2) The template is printed and its shape is cutted on 2mm carboard. The windows and doors are opened and the timber frame is made with wood matches. I used two different bonding methods, the first was to use white glue and the second - depicted in the following picture - requires the previous covering of the cardboard walls with double-side adhesive tape, on which the wood matches were then adhered

3) The wall plaste is the applied whitin the limits of the timber frame and then allowed to dry for 24 h.

4) The roof is made with corrugated cardboard strips than are fixed superimposed from bottom to up as seen in the following picture (taken from Yorvi Forum)

5) A picture of the final roof

To be continued!

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  1. Clever stuff Rafa - I watch with interest!

  2. As Stryker says, I'm watching with interest, too!

    Do you have preference between glue and double sided tape?

  3. Thanks everybody!
    For Rosbif: This is the first time I use the double sided tape, so I don't have any preference still. I suppose that the wall plaster will stay most firmly adhered with this method, but I don't know the results in the long run

  4. Creative, inventive and practical, as we have come to expect from you!
    Thanks for posting

  5. Very creative this house is going to look very good I think,