Tuesday, January 16, 2018

How To: Building a table for Infinity

Greetings Everybody!

Tody, I want to talk about tables. I don't want to go in depth into the pun about table top or all the buyable stuff out there.

There are reasons out there to buy mats from one of the many different manufacturers (i.e. you are running a tournament), but for my tatse, they are a "easy way out". The other, rather rare typ is the sculpted board and most of the time, those are far from affordable.

Here I want to show you, how I tried to combine the two aspects  find most important for a board: affordable and textured .

Infinity is played on 48"x48" / 120cm x 120cm tables. To gain more flexibility, I separate all the boards into 24"x24" /60x60cm pieces.

Step -1

Go to your home improvement store and and get those boards cut. I prefer MDF 12mm thick boards, those give you the maximum of sturdiness, while being affordable, they are not to heavy and easy to store.

Step 0

Decide on the design you want. I want to show you here two boards I did for different reasons. The on board is supposed to work as a Laboratory Floor, the other shall pass as a City Table.

I will start with the Lab Table, for which you need:

  • 4x 60x60x1,2cm MDF Boards
  • Cardboard
  • PVA-Whiteglue
  • Arcylics (brown, orange etc.)
  • Spraypaint (Grey, blue, etc.)
  • Silicon Milk
  • Sponges
  • Paintbrushes
  • Scissors or Cutters and Rulers 

Step 1

I used a paper cutter maschine in school to get the cardboard cut into long and angled shaped.

Using watered down PVA-Glue, I glued the pieces on the MDF Board.  
Important: Mix water with PVA until you getafluid that is easily applied with a brush. It is important to cover the whole cardboard piece with the Water-PVA-Mix, or the card board will get waves in the next steps.

I tried to have the corridors, rooms and halls a Laboratory would have in mind, when I layed out the cardboard pieces. Cutting off corners created an easy diversification on the shapes.


Sealing the cardboard. I mixed a really dark brown 50.50 with PVA-Glue and a bit of water. I made the coat rather thick, since this will be the protective layer to prevent your cardboard from taking damage. You would assume, that the cardboard would eventually get peeled away, but I have that board in use for quite a while and no such thing has haappend until today. So, generous coat of protectiveness.

If you a aiming for a slightly textured surface that has a slight rusty touch to it, you could add some filler-powder or talcum powder to the mix or anything like that. I would think though that sand would be too much texture.

Next I covered the board in awatered down, brighter brown.

While the paint is still wet, I used a little plastic bag to dab into the paint. This way I created some iregular shapes and textures in the paint. This erased the brushes stripes in the paint and help to add a more rusty feeling to the brown layer. You could probably repeat this step with different red, brown and orange tones, depending on how bright you want your rust to be later on.

I was aiming for a dark tone to get a nice contrast later on, since the "cover" layer was supposed to be bright.

Step 3

Masking. You probably all know the vallejo masking fluid, artists like Angel Giraldez and the Massive Voodoo Team uses...
I wanted to use the same technique, just for a whole table. Ofcause I would have made me poor and vallejo rather rich, if I would have bought all the bottles from the,.
Luckily I found out, what that masking fluid really is... Latex Milk. The stuff casters use... which comes to an affordable price in rather large quantities.

So Here I was, ready to mask the board using: Latex Milk (is pink at frisst, but transparent when dry), an old plate to pour the milk on and some sponges.

Then, just as if you would weather your tank or TAG, apply the latex milk lightly dabbing with the sponge on areas where the paint would chip off.

Step 4

I used an airbrush (not one of those fancy ones... one of those, that you get off cheap... I didn't know it better that time) to apply the grey blue colour, I wanted the floor to have.
On top of that I used some stencils with number for the floor, I had cut previously.

Step 5

Rub off the latex milk. I used a sponge with some dried latex on, since dried latex loves to stick to... other dried latex.

Step 6

Details. I previously had glued fly-mesh with PVA in some places to add a industrial vibe to certain areas. Those were now drybrushed with metal colors.

 Using the technique I also used for posters (check the tutorial here ) to make some of those red/white and yellow/black warning stripes, about 3mm wide. After they were glued in place, I gave them some dsponge dabbing with brown paint to blend them in.


There you go!

Though it is some work, I think this is a technique that gives you the possibility to create with rather little efford your own battle field, that has some more depth than a battle mat.

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