Friday, April 15, 2011

Monster Mud

I've been hearing about a concoction made from 5 parts drywall mud and 1 part latex paint called Monster Mud that can be used to dress up Halloween props.

Bloodsworth Manor has a cool coffin covered with the stuff.

Speaking of coffins, I need to get cracking on learning pneumatics and try to build an automatic open/close coffin before October...

Friday, April 8, 2011

Gameboard Prototype

Leaving a Dwarven Forge dungeon layout on the dining table between sessions is not ideal, and who wants to break it down and set it back up?

So I sketched out plans for a game board that will sit in the middle of my dining table, allowing 13" of usable depth to the edge for players to put their character sheets and stuff.  I'll route the edges with a cove bit so that it will be easier to pick up off the table with my fingers.  The top will be covered with a grass mat and the bottom will be lined with felt to protect the table.

I'll draw a grid spaced at one-inch intervals so that the gameboard can also be used as a battlemat.

  1. Since this is a prototype the first time around I used a 2' x 4' x 5/8" sheet of birch plywood from Home Depot.  These are precut and ready to go.
  2. Measure in 12" from one end and each side to find where to drill a 1/8" hole for the Jasper circle cutting guide pin to go. NOTE: Cheat this in a little more away from the edge to make sure you don't get a small flat spot at the tip of the circle.
  3. Use a Whiteside RU5125 spiral cutting bit in the router and make several passes no deeper than 1/4" using the circle guide.  NOTE:  Attaching a vacuum to the router is important.  It produces a LOT of sawdust.
  4. Gameboard 01 - First PassGameboard 02 - One End Done

  5. Repeat steps 2-3 for the opposite end of the sheet
  6. Gameboard 03 - Both Ends Done

  7. Remove the Whiteside RU5125 bit and install the Whiteside 1804 cove bit.  Route the edge of the board all the way around.
  8. Gameboard 04 - Cove edge

  9. Sand the edges
  10. Apply wood stain to the edge with some overlap onto the faces of the board. After a day I added a coat of paste wax.
  11. Gameboard 05 - Applying Stain

  12. Apply the felt lining to the bottom using a spray adhesive.  Cut the excess using a hobby knife
  13. Gameboard 06 - Felt

  14. Coat the top with shellac to seal the wood pores before using any adhesive. This ensures the mat does not develop air bubbles.
  15. Apply the grass mat to the top using a spray adhesive.  Cut the excess using a hobby knife

  16. Gameboard 07 - Grass Mat

  17. Mark points for 1" gridlines using a green permanent marker, or whatever color you feel is least obtrusive yet still visible during a game.

  18. Draw the gridlines with a ruler using the permanent marker

  19. Gameboard 08 - Grid

An ultra fine point green sharpie seems to turn out just right - the gridlines are visible but not too strong. Let the battle begin! Gameboard 09 - Minis
I'll be doing some research on reasonably-priced hardwood boards to make more of these out of rather than plywood.