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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
As the title says, I picked up a copy of CorelDraw, the 2d design program and have been playing with it. Here's an early draft of a set of low walkways, ideal for your favourite skirmish game:



* resolution isn't the best, blew the image up a tad much.

Once I've gotten to a stage I'm pleased with, these will be getting sent off to be laser cut from HDF (high density fiberboard, a wood) to see how they build and paint up and from there. . . who knows :wink:

What do you think folks?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
It will be really obvious when you tell me, however: what are the wiggly bits in the lower left corner?
Stairs frames? They go with the thinner floor sections I guess.
Lazy hit's the nail on the head, they are the braces for the stairs. The stair frames are the part I'm most torn about. On their own they look strange and boring, but I'm hoping that once the stairs are mounted they will look fine. I want the kit to be as easy to assemble as possible (and disassemble, and reassemble and I think you get the picture) so I don't want lots of little fiddly bits.

I fiddled around and managed to add another straight section, which means the frame now has 80cm (or 31.5 inches) of walkway, which is pretty cool.



I've also been working on a connector sprue to do corner sections and "crossroads". I've decided to separate these out from the walkway itself so that the walkway sprue can have as much as possible on it.



Obviously envisioning how they would go together would be easier with a 3d rendering, but I haven't worked out quite how to do that yet, so I'll have to wait to use the actual prototypes :p
 

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Discussion Starter #5
So the prototypes for the medium walkways have arrived! A huge thanks to metalmonk for cutting these bad boys out!

Here you can see a stair set and the walkway:



A closeup of the walkway sectionL



And a (shaky) shot of the walkway detailing:



Things I've learned from this:

- I hadn't been taking the width of the laser into account, which has caused the holes to be larger than I intended. It's not a problem, as I was going to glue them anyway, but I'll need to adjust accordingly so that future kits can be built right out of the box.

- Same with the engraved sections, I will need to make them smaller. They look awesome as they are now, but they're a little too big.

- I made the supports too thick, I was concerned that if I made the beams on the main walkway support too small they would break, but I think they can stand to be half as thick as they are.

-This wood has a grain in it, which may lessen the effect when it comes to painting, we'll see. It's not a problem now as it's merely a prototype. But the final product will be a smooth wood.


Overall I'm very pleased with it. I've got 80cm total of walkway, which means I can have 2 40cm sections on the board, which should add a lot to the visuals.

It's also given me a lot of information on what I need to take into account when designing the pieces. I'm eager to get the shipping container cut as soon as I have a little spare cash too!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
A few shots of the kit on the table:





Nothing is glued yet so it's a little rickety. But overall I'm really pleased with how quickly it adds verticality to the board.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Very nice! I need these for Infinity ASAP
The plan is to sell them, but I need to iron out the kinks in the design first and then get my business site set up, apply for various copyrights and all that jazz. I'll be launching a sci fi mini line next year too. Hopefully these can go on sale before then though. Fingers crossed.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
So the next batch of prototypes arrived. This time is a shipping container:





I'm reasonably pleased with how it came out, but I've already made some adjustments.

Firstly, assembling it square was difficult so I've added guides to the design to make it easier.

I've also made the ends longer so that they line up more flush.

I think the next thing will be walkway connector pieces, and the V2 walkways (with handrails)
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Hey folks. It's been a while since the last update, but I have been continuing with my laser designs. I have a few prototypes that I want to get cut come payday. But I have started painting the ones I have.

I've found that the walkways, although awesome, are impossible to paint as they are cut from a wood with quite a significant grain. For V2, I'll have to be sure to get them cut from an mdf with no grain.

The containers have painted up OK though.

I bust out my airbrush for them, but chose the wrong colour really. I decided on a grey/white but should have gone with a more colourful choice. I've weathered one of the containers, and will be re-painting the other.











I'm pretty pleased with the results. I'm certain a painter better than I could have done a far superior job, but I still like it.
 

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Bringer of the Apocalypse
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To paint the wooden walkways, I suggest simply using a wash of black/dark brown and using it as a stain. Then simply drybrush with your choice of metals when the stain is dry...
 

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Discussion Starter #14
To paint the wooden walkways, I suggest simply using a wash of black/dark brown and using it as a stain. Then simply drybrush with your choice of metals when the stain is dry...
A metal drybrush would probably look quite nice on them! I'll give it a shot!
 

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Jac "Baneblade" O'Bite
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That walkway looks good mate, the container is missing something I think though, it's too straight I feel. The shipping containers we have here (I assume they are same as for you) need to have curved edges on the "ribs", I'm not sure of that's possible for laser cutting or not though.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
That walkway looks good mate, the container is missing something I think though, it's too straight I feel. The shipping containers we have here (I assume they are same as for you) need to have curved edges on the "ribs", I'm not sure of that's possible for laser cutting or not though.
I know what you mean, and as far as I know, it's nit possible to laser cut them that way. It doesn't help that this initiate design doesn't line up flush very nicely. V2 of the basic container should be much more flush and boxy. I'm starting work on some more sci fi ones too.
 

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Critique for da CriticGod
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Reaper, I missed this thread before but this is excellent stuff. I wonder if there is a totally non-grained (and non-porous) synthetic that would work?

That would prevent the problems with grainy texture and also distortion from absorbing water while painting.

Maybe 1/8th inch PVC will work. I used to work for a sign company and we used that as one of our substrates.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Reaper you talented fecker, that is excellent, + rep and hope the business side is a success to boot!
Reaper, I missed this thread before but this is excellent stuff. I wonder if there is a totally non-grained (and non-porous) synthetic that would work?

That would prevent the problems with grainy texture and also distortion from absorbing water while painting.

Maybe 1/8th inch PVC will work. I used to work for a sign company and we used that as one of our substrates.
Cheers folks.

Kreuger, theoretically you can laser cut any mayerial, it all comes down to cost really. MDF is pretty inexpensive. And the stuff with no grain (like the containers) takes paint *ok*, a light wash with watered down PVA glue helps with the absorption of the paint.

And as a special treat, here's a little early WIP on what's currently on my digital work table:



A nice and simple city block building. There are companies out there that offer similar products (such as 6-10 story buildings) but more often than not they're plain faced buildings. So I set out to do my own that maintains the ease of assembly (so you could realistically knock together a city of them in an evening) but has a little more detail on the surface.

There are no interior floors (yet, I may do a version with them at some point). These buildings are purely to "bulk up" the table for lack of a better term.

As it is, the back wall cannot fit onto the same sheet as these three. I'm going to experiment with breaking the back wall into smaller jigsaw sections and dotting them around the sheet. I'm loathe to put it on a second sheet as it effectively doubles the cost of building.

Thoughts?


It has also occurred to me that this style of building would be perfect for a small scale game (obviously re-sized accordingly), such as dropzone commander. Something where you don't need to access the interior of the buildings.
 
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