2010 New Year's Raffle Project

We received numerous entries for our 2010 New Year's Raffle and the lucky winner drawn at random was David Edgington. David wrote: How about a bridge? Nothing fancy like the bridges at Arta, Liepzig, London Bridge, or the Golden Gate. Just a simple stone, single arch bridge to cross a stream. The sort of thing that was in service from the Middle Ages until the advent of heavy, motorized traffic. I've looked for resin bridges in 28mm, but nobody seems to make them. Or, maybe I'm just too picky and I should say nobody seems to make one I like. No worries David, we're on it!

After clarifying a few more build specifications with David we came up with the initial measurements. These were drawn with a sharpie marker on blue foam.

Next I cut out the foam pieces with a craft knife and a straight blade box cutter. Note the peak of the bridge is cut through. This was done to allow for the highest arch without adding additional height to the design.

It was far from a beautiful cutting process, but as you can see easily done using the tools at hand. Another excellent excuse to make my own foam cutter!

A piece of duct tape was used to join the two halves of the bridge at the peak. Cork board sheets were then sized and cut for the sides of the structure. Make sure you dry fit everything before you start gluing.

Additional discussions with David indicated a need to add some height to the arch. This was accomplished by placing a sheet of cork under the bridge. Note the curves cut into the tunnel walls of the two halves. This allows a little more room to fit any bending portions of David's existing river pieces .

Extra tacky PVA white glue was used to secure the foam to the cork as well as the sides of the bridge. Sewing pins are stuck through the foam and cork to hold everything in place until the glue dries.

These pins were stuck through the sides and into the cork piece under the bridge. Notice how tight the glue seam at right is. Cork sheeting is great to work with!

1/72 or 20mm plastic soldier placed on bridge to check for wall height.

So far looking good! Last step was to coat the underside of the bridge arch in order to cover the exposed foam with a layer of protective PVA white glue. The bridge was allowed to dry over night.

I then added some card stock to the sides of the arch to simulate vaulted stones. I also tore out some of the cork along the tops of the walls to get rid of the nice clean edge lines.

A light grit sand was mixed with PVA white glue until it was similar to wet clay. This glob of sand was then smeared onto the arch to provide both texture and strength to the bridge surface. The process was repeated with coarse natural sand and used where the base of the road meets the table. This was done on newspaper which would be torn away after the mix dried for a solid edge to the piece.

After the bridge dried over night I sprayed the whole structure with chalkboard black for the based coat. Notice the road takes longer than the cork to dry.

The whole structure is dusted several times to prevent the paint from running or becoming tacky to the touch.

After the black base coat is completely dry I then dry brushed the bridge with four shades of gray and three of brown.

Gray went on the walls and brown went on the road surfaces. Some green was added to the outside edges and along the high water mark of the sides.

Here some 1/72 20mm plastic troopers try out the new terrain feature. Notice the rough edges of the stone walls and the mud splatter on the inside faces. Muddy wagon tracks lead up over the top.

The bridge was designed to accept 28mm wagons but also handles 1/72 armor with ease. Just under three inches high, three inches wide, and eleven inches long it is a nice sized piece of terrain for any table.

And a week later we have the winning prize on David's table and ready for some good gaming. Hope you enjoy your new bridge David and for the rest of you keep an eye out for our next raffle which is sure to come!

© 2010, Gabriel Landowski