Friday 25 March 2011

Terrain is everything - Vent Tower pt 2. EUREKA!

A lot of brain power has been employed over the last few weeks trying to solve the problem of the roof of the 'Vent Tower'. Surprisingly the solution was to stick to the initial sketch. Of course the problem with that was that I'd made the floor plate only just big enough to fit four figures and there would be no room for walls as foamcard thickness of 5mm (x4 all the way round) was sufficient to stop the miniatures fitting up top.

Additionally, going without walls looked a bit stupid, like that scene from Family Guy Blue Harvest. Sure, in the 41st Millenium, Health & Safety isn't big on the Imperium's agenda but seriously your not going to put a guard rail at the top of the building?... aah-hah! A guard rail BING!

So I went back to the sketch and thought to use granny grating as a barrier, thin enough to not take up too much room and transparent enough tto still retain the lines of the building and still provide some measure of architectural reality in stopping folks falling off the top.

So, here we have the floor plate with four pieces of flower decorators wire bent and shaped to add support to the corner pieces. The floor plate has notches cut into it, but not the last bit of card that the corner pieces can also be supported by and glued to. The last picture of the 3 shows the pieces dry fit into their position.

Typically the next set of pics seem to have missed out quite a bit but as you can see I've put in place the granny grating guard rail and removed sections of it to make it even less obstructive. I went for a chest height but having played around in Photoshop in the third picture, I think a waist height would be better and less intrusive to the design and easier to position figures. As you can see four figures fit quite nicely and the fifth would shoot from the firing position of the door. Can't imagine four Termagant up here though, but then again the Imperium does haven't to abide by diversity laws and accommodate for Xenos!

Here's a shot of the roof so I can try and break down what went on between the first three shots and the second set. Black mounting card was positioned in the two corners butting up to the corner spires. The spires were glued in place. I cut granny grating for the floor and removed a base sized circle in the corner with the spire that has a bit of wall to protect those coming out of the hatch. A slotta-base was glued in place and a hatch from an old model American Wild West Locomotive was poly-cemented as the hatch. I'm sure a simple disc of card would suffice here, I'll have to add one into the STC when I get round to it but as you can see this bit's going to be a right pain to describe. Railings where glued in place, I've still to use sandwich bag wires to tie them in place, but that'll happen after the PVA dries.

Now, afterall the worries about retaining the lines of the building I've actually bulked out the roof silhouette. The vertical stripes on the building had to have some sort of ledge above them. If the ledge was too thin it would have looked odd. Fortunately I had some bits of black mounting card that had been doubled up. These were stepped at the corners with the wire support and cut diagonally to butt up at the spire corners and amazingly it's made a pretty damn good fit.

Lastly another Photoshop edit to confirm whether chest height or waist height for the gurad rail would be best and I think the answer is self evident. Oh, and lastly a reminder of what the sketch was and it's pretty close.

But wait, didn't I say I was going to put Heavy Bolter sponsons on this? Well yes I did, but I couldn't get it to work properly, however this roof comes with a piece of square foamcard the exact size of the interior hole of the tower walls attached underneath to hold it in place. This roof will be removable and I'm looking to add an alternative roof section with a similar 'plug fit' that covers at least another two floors, possibly more. In which case there'll definitely not be enough room for four up top so it will support two and I will look to fit the sponsons and fire ports on the additional floors. I wonder how tall I can make this?

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