Saturday, 10 September 2016



I have been trying to get more gaming time in with Chain of Command lately while at the same time been busy working on 10 different half finished projects and not been able to finish any.
The last 3 weeks I have been consumed with creating buildings from  MDF.

After gaming with pre made buildings on offer (both resin and MDF) in the gaming stores.
I noticed that I was not drawn to the resin buildings although they did have more texture on the face of the buildings creating depth which produced a more realistic look to the building.

The MDF lazer cut building were excellently made,were clean with perfectly cut sides that fitted together nicely. The downside was the exterior of the buildings had no depth looked a bit flat lacking in texture.

I also noticed that, gaining access to my troops within the buildings by removing and replacing a roof or floor was a bit fiddly. 
When troops occupied all levels of a 3 story building it was hard to see which troops were on the other floors.
Constantly  removing the roof was a hassle, if you left the roof off the building it did  loss some of the realism and appeal of having buildings on the gaming table.

As always I saw it as a challenge to construct my own buildings from 3mm MDF sheets.  
and finally my days spent in  Wood working class in  High school came in handy.

Making my own buildings would save me a great deal of money, although it would cost me in time spent constructing them but the personal satisfaction of creating,I think is priceless.

The areas I wanted to focus on improving were:

  • be able to see troops on different floors without having to remove levels.
  • If the roof was removed from the building I wanted to retain a portion of the roof on the building 
  • create a easier system for removing and replacing floors and roofs.
  • produce depth and texture to the outer sides of the buildings.
The first part of the project was to raid the internet for images of French buildings, visiting French real estate sites proved to be productive.
Once I had the images I need to workout the dimensions and measurements, using heights and widths of doors provided me with a basic measurement for roughly working out the heights and widths of buildings and down scaling them into 28mm scale. 

The next part was putting designs on paper with measurements,buying the MDF sheets, wood glue, and transferring the designs onto the MDF where a square ruler proved a valuable tool.
A hand wood saw was used to cut out the desired shapes, the doors and windows were cut out using a Dremel type hand motor and the perspex floors was cut using a metal cutting saw.

In PART 2 of this project I will add detail and texture to the buildings.

I managed to complete:
1 x Church
1 x Chateau
4 x WC
4 x Tool sheds
2 x Horse stables
3 x Barns
8 x Houses
1  x Cafe/restaurant


The Church I decided to initially model was the Sainte-Mere-Eglise which is famous for the American paratrooper John Steele who caught his parachute on  the church building during D day, the story portrayed in the movie the longest day, present day, a manican of a paratrooper can be seen hanging off the building.

Half way thru the project I realized that the church was going to be too big for the gaming table and had to reduce the width and length of the building dramatically.
This meant that the church was no longer the Sainte-Mere-Eglise  but a "mimi me" imitation. "O well you can't have everything"

Floor plan transferred onto MDF
cut out with wood saw
Entrance of church 

side wall facings of church

Placing the walls of the church together to check fit. at this stage I noticed that the church looked huge.
Trying out a technique to create texture on the building using a saw.

trying out mimicking individual stones on the building using a Demel type hand motor and a round bur.

Happy with the results

Door frame added and detail cut into the MDF around the window.
Starting the assembling and gluing stage,square rule used to make sure the walls are vertical.
A bit of hardware used to apply pressure while the wood glue cures.
I decided that the church was going to be huge and unsuitable for a gaming table.Time to put plan B into action I decided to reduce the width, and  length of the church by well over half.
Church cut down in size.
Cutting down the width and length meant I had to resize the over components of the church I had already prepared.
After resizing I assembled and glued in place.
Roof sections were all resized 
stage finished roofs are removal if you notice the lower portion of the roof is glued onto the building this was done so that when a portion of the roof is removed that portion of the roof remains.
Its no longer the church that I wanted to build but I am happy with the modified results.
Next stage to complete, the details.


Floor plan
All the walls cut out.
Assembled and glued together
Tool shed pieces cut out
Barn pieces cut out 
Barn and Tool shed glued into position

cutting perspex with a metal saw
Perspex floor in place and upper floor walls glued in place.
Roof added to both Tool shed and Barn pictured below

completed with figure for scale

Notice the partial roof remaining on the building when the roof is removed. 


I decided to loosely model  this Chateau I found on a French real estate site.
I did not want to repeat the mistake I made with the church and decided to down size the chateau by not replicating the windows either side of the door.

Complete model
Plans drawn up and ready to transfer onto the MDF
floor plan cut out.
Ground floor walls ready
Back view assembled and glued together 
Front view
Perspex floor and 1st floor walls cut out and glued in place.

Perspex floor cut out and ready for the addition of Attic 
Roof section cut out ready for assembling 

Glued in postion.

window installed in Attic 
Roof and chimney added
rear view.

next step to add detail and texture.

I built 2 small farm houses loosely based on these imagines

House with one Attic window
House with one Attic window 
House with 2 attic windows

side and rear view

Roof removed to reveal the attic.
Showing how the attic floor can be removed to attend to troops on ground level.


The following 2 buildings  were based on the following images

building with attic window.

building without attic window.


This building is based on a image  I found on Pinterest.

side view