Afternoon all. During this short break from titan building I found myself wondering what to do with myself.
So here is a simple guide to building quick realistic looking rubble bases.
OK, you should really start all projects with a realism check. I looked through various sources at rubble and broken buildings. Taking into account the spread of derbis and the materials that make it up. Looking at the image below, you can see this close up not only has broken masonary in it, but also other objects that may have been held within the building, or on the street outside. Items like these add character and life to your models, putting them into a situation rather than on a plastic disc.
Watch for the spread of debris, is the rubble fresh or has it been there for years, while forces battle over the area. Areas further from the blast site will, obviously, be less covered with the debris, but rubble may have been cleared by occupants to provide additional cover or allow access.
Note the cleared pathway on this photo
Many 40K battlefields will have buildings that have been smashed apart and opened to the elements, for this reason much of the interior that may have once been bright wall paper will be worn and dirty. Look at the image below, you can see much of the material is brown and dusty, but there are a few spots of reds and blues in there.
This boyo here is the old OOP Heresy miniatures Netherlord. Its been sat on my shelf for a VERY long time (2 years or more) and, as you can see, is yet to be completed. Im intending to paint this chap up to be used as a Summoned greater daemon for my Iron Warriors if I ever decide to use one.
I found a suitable CD to use as a base and stuck a few small plasticard tiles onto it after scoring the surface to add extra grip for further layers. The tiles are 1cm squares cut using a metal ruler and knife. Simple to make. The plasticard is 1mm thick. This was stuck using PVA glue. I also pinned the model to the base at this point, but you can wait till the end and have the miniature stood tall on the rocks!
Now for the sneaky bit. To make realistic building rubble I am going to use a material called stone powder. This is very similar to plaster of paris but sets slightly firmer. Plaster of paris will work fine as a substitute in this tutorial.
I mixed up a few pieces the night before (following the instructions ofcourse) and left them to dry. I used a blister pack and a section from the metal models tray as molds, try and ensure you dont have any odd pieces in there as these will print onto your plaster.
Once the mix is fully dry (you can heat it gently with a hairdryer to speed up the process but Id wait a good 12 hours) tap out the pieces and wipe away any dust.
Next step. Wrap up your newly cast pieces in paper, I used kitchen towel but newspaper will do fine. Take these pieces outside and give them a good old whack or two with a hammer. The bigger the better! You want these to look like broken pieces of masonary, walls and what nots.
I then applied PVA glue to the base in areas I wanted large rocks and started to stick them down. I placed smaller pieces around these to give a sloped feel. I dropped a tiny amount of superglue over these pieces to ensure they stuck frmly to the base.
Dont put too much on otherwise it may look to busy.
You can see I also added some extras at this stage. In the larger chunk of the plaster Ive added some renforcing by using some thin pinning wire or paper clip, Ive also added a space marine helmet (Die Imperial Fist!) and some bent metal pieces from thinner grade plasticard bent into odd shapes. Let your imagination run wild!
Next I got some of the smaller pieces of my broken up rubble and popped them into a spray lid. Then I crushed them up. Id advise using anything firm to do this with. I used a screwdriver handle. Leave some reasonable size chunks to scatter onto the base.
Next add some fine sand to this mix. You want about 60:40 sand to plaster. Make sure you mix this up well.
Now add some PVA to the uncovered areas of the base and around the lower areas of your large chunks. Then sprinke this mix generously over the areas. I covered my base in small sections at a time as its so large. With small bases you may be able to dip them into the mix, which will save on cleaning up time later! I made a mess!
As you do this leave the area to dry for a short while before tapping to remove the excess. With small bases you can do this on the side of the mixing pot to save making a mess all over your desk like I did! Also scrape of any of the mix that finds itself over the edge of the base, or any chunk of plaster that is over hanging too far, these may break off during gaming or in transit and can damage the base.
I then went around and fixed any gaps with additional layers.
Leave to dry over night and now you have your completed base!
Netherlord striding across a rubble strewn courtyard.