Home Home > Building Middle Earth - General > The Road Goes Ever On and On
The Road Goes Ever On and On
Easy
Materials, Equipment and Paints Used:
Foamcore
Decorators Caulk
Craft Knife
PVA Glue
Metal Rule
Sharp Craft Knife
Cutting Board
Modelling Sand
Green Flock
Black Paint
Brown Paint

The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.

Introduction

This article is about making roads, pathways and tracks. I wanted to have sections of roads that fit together almost like train track sections rather than one whole road piece. This way you could mix and match road pieces to come up with different road layouts.

Inspiration

I wanted the roads to look like those found in the countryside with deep brown mud colours and green grass verges.

Planning

First I thought about the size and scale for the roads and decided to make the actual roadway 3" wide and the grass verges 1/2" each, meaning that the road sections would have to be 4" wide in total. I made each road section 12" long.

At this stage I also planned what road sections I wanted, making the decision to create six long straight pieces (12"), two Short straights (6"), two Bends, one T-Junction, one Crossroad and one special road section that would be the town square for my Bree gaming table.

The Basic Shapes

The long straights are discussed above are 4" wide and 12" long, and as with all roads are cut out from the foamcore. I marked a line half an inch in from each side. This will be used later when shaping the verges.

The two shorter straights were cut out and marked in the same was as above.

Next I cut out four 6" by 6" squares, two of these will be for the bends, one for the T-junction and one for the crossroads.

For the bends I measured on the right hand side 1/2" down from the top (RB), then 3 and 1/2" (RC) and then finally 4" (RD). I did this for the bottom, starting from the right hand corner marked 1/2" in (BB), then 3 and 1/2" (BC) and then finally 4" (BD). I then drew a curved line from each point so that RA went to BA, RB to BB, RC to BC and RD to BD and cut the piece out, cutting along the RA to BA and RD to BD lines.

For the T-junction I marked a vertical centre line down the middle. I then measured a horizontal line 1/2" from the top, then another 3 1/2" down and finally another 4" down. Next using the vertical centre line I measure 2" either side of it and another 1/2" either side of those. I then connected and cut out the curved lines.

The crossroads was similar to the T-junction expect that both a vertical and horizontal centre line was marked out for guidance.

At this stage I also made the custom piece for my Bree gaming table which I set up and laid the basic road sections out. Where I wanted the town square I laid out some paper and drew the size and shape I needed this to be. This was then used as a template to cut the actual piece out of foamcore.

With all the basic shapes cut out next I carved the grass verge. This is where the guidance lines marked out above come in handy. As long as the verges that get carved start and end at these points the road sections should all fit together nicely when laid out together.

Rather than making one straight cut I tried to make smaller cuts so that the end result was not uniform, I wanted a rough look as nothing in nature is really neat and uniform looking.

Texturing

I covered the road surface of each section in Decorators Caulk (which is effectively filler used on walls) and using a small rectangle of card offcut spread it out so that it is all covered. Using the corner of the card I ran this down the length of the road section to give the impression that this road has been travelled along in horse and carts.

Once this has dried PVA glue was applied to the grass verge sections and then covered in Modelling Sand.

Painting and Flocking

All the road sections were undercoated in black paint. Then I basecoated them in a dark brown, then drybrushed in lighter shades of brown. I did not use Games Workshop paints for this but if you want an approximation I basecoated in Rhinox Hide, drybrushed with Mournfang Brown and finally drybrushed with Steel Legion Drab.

The grass verges were covered in PVA glue and flocked using the same techniques as used in the Simple Gaming Boards article.

Conclusion

That's all there is too making roads for your gaming table tops. If in the future you ever need to add more then that should be a trivial thing to do.



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