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Monday, 7 March 2022

SCRATCH BUILT, CORNFIELD

 

Creating realistic terrain for the wargaming table is often a challenge, making it playable just adds to that challenge but creating cornfields where miniatures and vehicles can be placed within them, pushes up the notch quite a bit.

Hence my solution, static cornfields that allow for placement of figures and vehicles within the cornfields without detracting from the realism, suitable for varied historical battles from the French Indian wars to WW2.   

In this post I will layout a step by step guide, how I created my Cornfields. 

American Native Indian using the cover of a cornfield to launch a  surprise attack on frontier settlers.
German Panzers with troops clearing a cornfield in Russia.

Completed Cornfield 
I use 3mm MDF cut into 4 pieces ( I later made another 2 boards)


File and sand the edges of the MDF

Each piece measures 30cm (1 foot) by 20 cm (8 inches) 

Spread a very thin random layer of Caulking on the top surface to add some texture

Prime it with Black Primer.

Coat of VMC Earth 

Dry brush with VMC Iquai Sand 1:1 Earth, then highlight with 1:1:1 VMC Iquai sand, Earth and Ivory and the base is ready for the next stage.

I considered purchasing pre made plastic corn plants on the internet but they were expensive, instead I  decided to look out for  artificial plastic plants that could be converted into corn plants.  A trip to IKEA with my wife  for some homewares resulted in spotting these artificial plastic plants. 

The product name is FEJKA and priced at  6 dollars.

First step is to trim off the parts that we need.

This is what you are after.

Use a sharp pair of scissors to transform the leaf edge from a rounded shape into a point by clipping the very edge of the leaf.

This is what you should end up with.
Next trim off some (not all) of the spurs at the junction of the leave and stem.

This is what you should end up with.

Next step is to use a pair of model clippers to crib each leaf , half way up the leaf.
 What you are aiming for is to create a crease in the leave so that it can later be bend over.

These are my model clippers which have seen better days but are ideal for this task, you can also use a pair of old blunt scissors for this task.
Each leaf has been cribbed and ready for the next stage.

Press your fingers on the tip of the leaf till it has a downward posture.

The corn plant is complete for the next stage.
Using this image as a guide for painting.

Painting  step is very simple and quick, use VMC Green Ochre to coat the corn on the plant then use VMC Beige Brown to coat some of the leaves on the bottom portion of the plant and its ready to be planted.

Bunch of corn ready for the next stage.

Use a drill bit equal to the plastic stem dimension of the corn and drill into the MDF.

You can use a figure as a guide for spacing the holes.

Drop of super glue in the hole and secure the corn plant in place.

Plenty of space for the figure.

Continue drilling and securing the plants in place.

Once all the plants are secured on the MDF and the superglue has cured, flip the MDF over and trim off any plastic poking through the base with box cutters or a grinding tool bit on a handpiece. 

Coat any exposed MDF caused by the previous step with some paint to protect it from moisture.

Adding flock to the base of each plant: first step is to apply PVA glue around each base of the corn plant 
Sprinkle a mix of Oregano leaves mixed in with light green flock  

Coat the edge of the MDF board with a layer of PVA glue applied with a brush. 

Add flock that with match up with your gaming mat.

Completed Cornfield 

Close up of the Corn field.

Some more images based on French Indian wars.




Image shows the effect of  6 Cornfield bases placed together.

Some more images of Germans in Cornfields.

Cheers John

30 comments:

  1. They look great! Nice work and something I will try for sure.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Kym for your comments, good to hear you will give it a go.
      cheers John

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  2. They look fantastic!

    How do you place the tanks in the fields? Do they fit between the individual plants? Or do you just flatten the plants under the tanks?

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    1. Thanks Peter for your comments, yes the tank sits onto and between the corn plants and when the tank moves the plants pop up again.
      cheers John

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  3. I think that's the best cornfield I've seen John! The step-by-step guide is very useful too.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Steve for your comments
      cheers John

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  4. Replies
    1. Thanks Eutha for your comment
      cheers John

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  5. Replies
    1. Thanks TasminP for your comment
      cheers John

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  6. A stunning terrain piece! Great work.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you John for your comment
      cheers John

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  7. Superb idea and great work! Thanks for sharing this and other stuff you made. Keep up inspiring us.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Snols good to hear you are inspired
      cheers JOhn

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  8. Very creative as usual John. Amazing work!
    Frank

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  9. Bloomin’ genius mate! IKEA in the UK have loads of plants called Fejka. So instead, I’ve ordered some potentially suitable plastic plants from Amazon. Smashing tutorial!
    Cheers
    Matt

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Matt for your comments, great to hear it been helpful.
      cheers John

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  10. Great, now I have to go to Ikea! Thanks for that. 😉

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    Replies
    1. No worries jcralls happy to help :-)
      cheers John

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  11. My wife was SO excited when she saw that I had bought a plant for my office!

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  12. That's a heck of a lot of work, John, but they look great. The Conquest Indians do too, excellent models.

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    1. thanks Dave for your comments, a labour of love, just a note the Indians are from Perrys miniatures.
      cheers John

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  13. Hello John, amazing work as always and such attention to detail. I find if I'm inspired to do something similar having had a look at the blog about 30% of the effort you make is more than good enough for me and the lads at the wargaming club :)

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    Replies
    1. Glad that you are inspired and thanks for your comments
      cheers John

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