Custom Rider Bases
I have never liked the plastic raised bases, beveled or rounded, which come with most 28mm figures. My background in model railroads makes me desire a more seamless transition from the foot of the figure to the surface of the playing table and these plastic bases force things in the opposite direction. On top of that I like having a low center of gravity for my figures so they don't fall over as easily on the table top or in storage. For my 28mm figures I like to use 25mm or 1 inch fender washers which tend to be thinner than regular washers of similar dimension, and often you can find them with a 5/16th center hole which makes for easier filling. I have also noticed that on the occasion I have accidentally dropped a figure it tends to land washer side down and thus spare the figure itself the brunt of the blow.
I'll use a piece of 1 inch wide masking tape and place a piece on the undersides of two washers when I am building a base for a horse or other animal of similar size. I then flip the washers upright and fill in the gap between the two washers using a two part epoxy being careful to keep the goop on the tape and making sure I get a nice coverage between the two adjacent washers as well as a frosting layer on top of both.
Once that dries minutes later I attach the animal on top using a dab of the two part epoxy. I cannot tell you how nice it is to have set or three of helping hands to keep pieces and figures exactly where I want them while the epoxy solidifies!
I finish the base with a nice layer of craft PVA glue, usually Aileen's here in the USA, which is then completely covered in sand. Make sure you completely cover and surround the base with sand when you do this step and the glue will not migrate or form a raised ring on the outer edge which tends to happen when you push the figure into the aggregate instead of the other way around. Be sure to spray the bottom of the base with a protective coat of paint or finish to prevent the washers from oxidizing which can some times happen. The result is a base 25mm or 1 inch wide by 50mm or 2 inches long with rounded ends perfect for your animal and rider.
Over all I think it looks nice once I have blackened the edges of the base and glue some flock on top using a half and half mix of water and craft PVA glue. Hit the whole thing with matte finish spray varnish to seal the deal and the end result is a solid, low center of gravity base which can stick to magnet sheets for storage. You can layout the fender washers in whatever pattern you need (for mortar team bases etcetera) and I think the result is better than anything else you'll see out there commercially.
Cheers & Enjoy!
© 2016, Gabriel Landowski