Gaming on a Budget: DIY Movement Trays

Since today is the first day off I’ve had to
myself in a while (though it’s looking increasingly likely that I will have to go in to work to fire somebody later today…), I decided to shirk my responsibilities and bring you an excellent
community post.   

A couple of years ago Hoagy- my good friend, fellow band mate (if you click the link and then like us, I’ll be happy- if you download our ep from iTunes or Amazon, I may even take off my pants for you), and purveyor of the excellent blog “When Canons Fade” (you should also click this link and like this page, but I’m not as likely to remove clothes for you as with the band thing)- wrote up an excellent piece that fits into the budget paradigm on building your own movement trays.  Apologies in advance for the non-existence of all paints mentioned in the tutorial.  I’m sure you all can figure it out, though.  Hope you enjoy and see you next week.  

Article after the random picture from my collection and the obligatory jump.  JUMP I SAY!

Hoagy, artist’s interpretation

With my first game of WFB looming rapidly on the horizon I picked up a
pack of the plastic movement trays that GW produces. They’re ok, for
models with bigger bases, but I wanted to create my own.  I’ll be
playing Tomb Kings, and as such, will be using minis with smaller bases.
Now, anyone who has seen the TK minis will see how spindly they are.
This can prove to be a bit of a pain in the arse when it comes to moving
them around, and I didn’t want to be wasting time arranging them
properly everytime they marched around the battlefield.
Dutifully I went to JoAnne Fabric and picked up some mounting card. I
already had foam card at home so I already have everything I need.
Initially I was thinking of using just the foam card but realized that
the skellies would practically be standing head and shoulders above the
other minis. Hence the thinner and stronger mounting card.
With the mounting card, draw around your base. Do this for your
frontage and your depth, depending on what size unit you’re fielding. As
I will be making this for a unit of 10 skellie archers, frontage will
be 5 with a depth of 2:

Once you have your base measured up, cut it carefully from the sheet
of card. Keep the lines as straight as possible. This one became my
‘master’ so I can use it for making more bases whenever I needed. From
here we draw around this again onto the mounting board. Then we draw a
bigger box around it. This extra spacing will be where our lip runs
around the edge of the base:

Cut this from your  sheet of card. You now have your base which
encompasses the 10 bases, plus the lip around the edge. Everyone
following this ok?
Now, to the foam board. Trace around the larger base you just cut.
then, lay your original template (the 10 base one from step one) on top.
Make sure the spacing around the edge is roughly equal then trace
around it. Then you’ll need to cut (very carefully) this centre piece
out. You should end up with something that looks like a licence plate
holder:


Get some all purpose clear glue and glue your foam card license plate
holder to the mounting card base. You should be looking at something
similar to the picture above. Don’t worry if it doesn’t look perfect,
we’ll be messing with that in a moment. I stuck my unit in it, just to
give it a test fit:

Now, grab yer scalpel, or other sharp knife. We need to trim the edges down to give a more natural appearance, thus:


You’ll see now why it wasn’t a big deal if it didn’t all look totally
straight, as you’ve changed it now anyway. You can be as zealous or
reserved as you like here, it’s all down to personal preference.
We need to texture it now and you can do that one of two ways. First
is to mix sand and PVA wood glue and paint this all over, or, if you
want a quicker solution like me, you may have some ‘pumice’ which is
available from most hobby stores. So, brab a brush and liberally slap it
all over the outer ridge:

And you should end up with something like this:

The final stage is simple. You paint them! Paint them whatever color
you need. As mine need to look all desert like, I start with a basecoat
of Snakebite Leather:

Then a drybrush of Bubonic Brown and then finally Bleached Bone yields these results:

Thats it! you are done! I made 3 straight off, so I could put 2 units
of skellie archers and a unit of Tomb Guard in them. They’re looking
pretty sweet, and help give the army a uniform look.

Hope you liked this tutorial. More coming soon!
Paul

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