A few readers of this blog, and of my posts on the TooFatLardies yahoo group (http://games.groups.yahoo.com/group/Toofatlardies), have asked a few questions about how all the boards match up, and how they stack together for storing away after a game. Over the past week I’ve found that my written explanations of this have left something to be desired, so I hope that a few photographs with the examples of two finished front line trench sections might help.
The photo below is a picture of ten of the terrain boards stacked under an old wargames table in my garage. They’re resting on some off-cuts of blue Styrofoam to make sure that they are off the concrete garage floor, and also to protect the edges of the boards resting on the floor. I found that the terrain boards stacked better length-wise instead of flat. This was for several reasons. Firstly, there seemed to be much less dust gathering on the vertical board than when stored horizontally. Secondly, we sometimes take just a couple of boards out to play a skirmish game on an evening if gaming friends come round. Although this doesn’t happen that often, it’s a bit frustrating to be looking through a stack of 20 or so boards to find the right one at short notice. The exception to vertical stacking is when the terrain boards are taken to the club or to a show, when they stack horizontally in the car, divided by bubble-wrap as shown with the two boards on top of the table.
When it gets a bit warmer I’m hoping to build a storage rack or cupboard for the boards in the garage, and hopefully blog the results on here.
The next photos show the terrain boards joining up side-by-side, and then a “section view” showing how deep the trench line lies in the board. You can see that the edges of the boards have a sort of “sandwich” appearance. The base is the timber battening, then the middle is the MDF square 600mm x 600mm base board for the terrain, and finally the top is the Styrofoam terrain into which the trenches are cut. You can see how the boards match up to ensure that the trench line runs continuously along the table.
The last shot is of the underneath of the terrain boards. The timber battens reinforce the MDF and give a very stable base for the whole terrain. I found over the years that MDF can warp badly, especially when liberally covered with PVA, paint and polyfilla. I was desperate to avoid this happening. This was one of the main reasons why I battened the MDF to the timber. So far so good. Over 20 terrain bases later, and we’ve had no warping. There’s an added advantage as well. You can see that the underside of the terrain boards creates a space about 40mm in height. When the boards are stacked, whether horizontally or vertically, that space allows a little contouring on the board stacked underneath or to the side. It’s an additional feature which has allowed us to build a few contours into the terrain boards, and exaggerate the jagged edges of shell craters in No-Mans Land, the odd splintered tree stump and so on.