Saturday, 11 August 2012

Building a Wargames Table – Part 1

Here we look at building a gaming table. A table that should offer you great flexibility in terms of modular set up and one which aims to offer a light weight alternative to the traditional battened ply wood approach. Let’s ave it…

Basic Materials
Insulation Board - 100mm x 1200mm x 2.4m
Insulation Board - 25mm x 1200mm x 2.4m
Planed Wood – 2 of 125mm x 10mm x 1840mm
Planed Wood – 2 of 125mm x 10mm x 1200mm
Paint - White or Black (to suit your mood)
Instant Grab Adhesive

Hand Saw
Paint Brush & Roller
Sandpaper & Sanding Block

Grab your hand saw and cut 580mm off the end of your 100mm thick 2.4m insulation board. This will leave you with a board that measures 1820 x 1200mm – As close to the traditional 6ft x 4ft gaming table as you’ll need. You may need to lightly sand the sawn side to smooth it off. Remember to wear a mask when cutting or sanding insulation board, the dust off this stuff will melt your lungs. Place the off cut insulation board to one side for making terrain with later…

Having got the timber merchant to cut the planed wood to the required dimensions ;)  use the instant grab adhesive to stick the wood panels to the sides of the board. These need to be flush with the base of the board and form a 25mm ‘lip’ round the top, a bit like a sandbox…

You’ll probably need to leave the adhesive to cure over night and will need to sand the wood joins. You may even want to use some filler, such as decorators caulk, to ensure a super tidy and smooth finish around all the seams. Once you’re happy, paint the entire board as you see fit. To save money, I decided to go with what I had lying around in the garage; Some white exterior paint, which gave a solid base coat in one application and a second layer of white gloss paint… 

With your paint now well on the way to drying out, you can move onto creating your ‘modular’ game boards. Taking your 25mm thick 2.4m insulation board, make exactly the same cut as you made on your base board, so that this new board can be lowered into the recess of the base board…

These ‘flip-able’ game boards will enable you to depict a different theme on each side. For example, you could create a seascape on one side for playing Dystopian Wars and green flock the other side for a generic WH Fantasy or FOW board. Part 2 of this post will look at the different game boards I’ll be making and hopefully by combining complimentary sets of terrain you’ll also be inspired to come up with a number of practical and cool looking themed boards as well ;)

'Not sure this particular activity totally deserves it's own pictorial guide !!?'
With your base board looking the part and a range of modular boards ready to fight over, all you need to do is find a table to stick it on. I’m fortunate to be able have the space to set my board up in the garage and with the board weighing so little, I can park it on top of one of those cheap plastic garden tables, confident in the knowledge that it ain’t gonna collapse under the strain of rumbling Land Raiders…

...Nor this one...

Invite your mates over, crack open some beers and wage some WAAARRR!!!!

In Part 2 we’ll take a look at how to go about creating a range of different themed game boards and also look at the scenery sets that will help bring them to life…

Until next time ;)

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