Home Forums Terrain and Scenery Yoga Mat Hills…

Viewing 24 posts - 1 through 24 (of 24 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #86968

    Has anyone made hills or other terrain features from yoga mats?

    My terrain collection went the way of the Dodo long ago so it’s time to make some more. I’m a contrarian by nature so I wanted to try something different and avoid all the mess of making hills from stryrofoam. I looked at rubber floor tiles but couldn’t find any that didn’t have an industrial flooring type texture on them. So I ended up buying a 2’x8’x 1/2″ thick yoga mat for $19US. It’s pearlescent green in color so it should be fairly easy to camouflage with paint and flock.  Unfortunately, the mat does have a ridged texture on one side but the other side is flat.  I’ll just need to ensure the ridged side is the bottom surface. The mat is easy to cut with a pair of scissors–even adding camber to the edges is easy.

    The problem I’m having is that when it was shipped–as is common with yoga mats–it was tightly rolled into a cylinder no more than 8 inches in diameter. Try as I might, it maintains its desire to curl. I’ve currently got a small test hill flattened under the West Point Military Altas, Vol II, as I glue the hill to a chipboard base to try and keep it flat. Will it be sufficient? I have no idea. Furthermore, I’m not sure paint or glue (for flock) will stick to the foam rubber.

    Has anyone else gone down this path? Any other suggestions for making cheap, convenient hills? I was thinking about using Sculptamold (a paper mache type product) but it seems relatively expensive for the amount I’d need.

    So how did you make your hills?

    Self taught, persistently behind the times, never up to date. AKA ~ jeff
    More verbosity: http://petiteguerre.blogspot.com/

    #86971

    BTW… this is why I get to play away with gaming stuff today:

    This is the first full day of Spring in Washington, DC. All this has accumulated in the past 3 1/2 hours. So, about an inch an hour. Oh, well, at least I didn’t have to report to work.

    Self taught, persistently behind the times, never up to date. AKA ~ jeff
    More verbosity: http://petiteguerre.blogspot.com/

    #86972

    I have made many sts of yoga mat terrain and am currently making more. Here are some things I have learned:

    1) Always use wood glue for everything. If you use white glue, it can pull while drying and disrtort the mat.

    2) Glue carpet or felt to the bottom of the mats, not chipboard. It keeps the terrain light and the felt helps to grip the table.

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #86996

    I have a sheet of felt that I throw on the table and my felt-backed terrain modules go on top of that, creating a light velcro effect that keeps everything in place.

    The non-felt backed hills go on top of the modules.

    Here you can see my work in progress. What I am trying to do here is build and old-school style “travel battle” game. It uses MDF Napoleonic figures from Commission Figurines (you can see a battalion here), and it will swap inches for centimeters, using the Black Power rules. That means that what you see here is the equivalent of a 6×4 table.

    There will be no flocking on this table: just paint. Here you can see six modules, a test forest, what will be a village, and a couple of unpainted hills.

     

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #87008

    Nice.

    One of the problems with more elaborate terrain is that because it takes longer to put up & to put away, you’re less inclined to game.

    Throw in some of my Storage Nightmare problems & I find myself looking at your set-up rather longingly.

     

    donald

    #87010
    Mike
    Keymaster

    One of the problems with more elaborate terrain is that because it takes longer to put up & to put away, you’re less inclined to game

    Yup. I am often envious of people with full time permanent set ups…

     

    #87031

    Yeah, Ochoin. I have an elaborate, diaorama-like set-up that I never play with because it takes and hour to get on the table and another hour to pick up. After I bought the Commission MDF stuff, I thought about doing an old school set-up: very stylized, a la “Charge”. Then “Travel Battle” came out and I started seriously considering buying that.

    However, a voice inside me said “You can use the MDF stuff and yoga mats to do a BETTER version of ‘Travel Battle’.”

    First I tried doing flocked and interlocking mats. That didn’t work because the only mats I could get at a reasonable price were poorly cut and didn’t fit together well. They were also thinner than normal (about 5mm), so they warped a bit when flocked, even when I used wood glue.

    So the second idea was to make unflocked hex terrain modules. That worked OK, but I couldn’t get the hexes perfect, even with a jig. Plus, making them modular with hills, cities and forests already on the board made them less versatile and harder  to store.

    So this is the third try. Rivers, roads and some terrain like hedgerows and fields and spaces for cities will be painted on. This way, terrain can be removed to place figures. Forests are bits of felt with trees on top of them. Hills are placed seperately. Bushes and trees built on pins will be provided to hold everything more or less in place (the big advantage of PVA mat terrain is you can use pins). Nothing will be flocked, in order to go with the old school vibe. And the back of the maps have felt glued to them so that they can essily be stuck to a piece of felt laid out on the table. Another advantage of the felt backing is that it prevents the modules from sticking together when stacked in the storage box.

    I built a custom traveling box for the kit out of bits of wood and foamcore that were laying around. It has ten shelving units, each of which can hold three full and three half-sized Terrain modules. It has another shelving unit for terrain bits and a final drawer for holding two armies of six mm MDF figurines. Netting on the side holds the felt playing mat. It weighs maybe two pounds, empty, and is the size of a small gym bag.

    So this will be my “Travel Battle” kit!

     

     

     

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #87036

    It should be noted that these six modules were test pieces. The next 24 will be much, much better cut and trimmed and so should fit together better. Also, if I had access to things like Kallistra hexes, I probably would have used them.

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #87039
    Gone Fishing
    Participant

    Forget the yoga mats. All I want is that deck and that view!

    #87041

    this will be my “Travel Battle” kit!

    Again, sir, kudos to you. A wise decision.

     

    donald

    #87042

    Here’s the carrying case. I still have to make some shelves, build the door, and hang the netting on the side. This was built with pieces of scrap plywood left over from furniture packing. Backpack next to it shows scale. Bigger than “Travel Battle”, bur smaller than “Ogre 6th Edition”. Can easily be carried with one hand.

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #87063

    It’s stipling, Tim, and I may do more of it.

    I originally paint the modules with a thick layer of beige acrylic paint. I then stiple it with a brush to give it texture. After it dries, I paint over it with a light olive green — a thick wash, really — and while that is still wet, I drop some deeper, richer greens here and there and then mix them in.

    Afterwards, I take an old, distressed sponge and stiple the boards with bright green, beige, and pale yellow. I may do some more yellow stipling to take down the green a notch. I’m torn between wanting it to look old school and it being too neon green.

    Any suggestions?

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #87070

    Old school set ups often are overly green. It’s so notorious, it even gets called “‘that’ green” (seen here: http://ilkleyoldschool.blogspot.com.br/2011/04/duchy-of-calvados.html).

    So I am torn.

    It’s hard “dumbing down” correctly. I suppose I shouldn’t even stiple the boards if I am going for that really clean old school look.

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #87096

    I have gotten really good results with a distressed piece of round sponge, attached to a small stick.

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #87113
    Don Glewwe
    Participant

    So how did you make your hills?

    I’m a fan of the cloth-over-stuff method – perhaps from my first exposure to minis-gaming using nat’l geo mags as hills?    I’ve gotten a half-dozen flannel sheets from thrift stores over the past years that -with a little bleach/paint application- serve as adequate clothes.

    Pro: size and height(thickness) of hills is determined by any stuff on hand – not premade hills.  Also: depressions/riverbeds are easy to incorporate.

    Con: wrinkles and such can be annoying/difficult to eliminate – pins (or time) can help to reduce this.

     

     

    https://brawlfactory.net/

    #87126

    I like that method, too. It can be used in tandem with this one: just drape a cloth over the landscape.

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #87138

    I have been known to use wadded up towels under my ground cloth for hills. You can achieve some nice diorama effects that way. But I do find it a fairly labor intensive process to get everything just right.

    Last weekend I went out and got some larger containers of green and brown acrylic paint and a stippling sponge to experiment on my yoga mat. Now, if it would just warm up in my workspace!

    Self taught, persistently behind the times, never up to date. AKA ~ jeff
    More verbosity: http://petiteguerre.blogspot.com/

    #87156

    My first foam hill.

    Here are the supplies. Total cost of this project will be around $26US. That’s a lot of hill material for that price.

    Here are the supplies needed. What’s not shown includes a bottle of lighter green paint and the stippling sponge. Oh, and some chipboard to try and keep things flat–which I already had on hand. You can see the extent of the curl of the yoga mat on the larger hill. Clearly an unfortunate issue. The smaller hill has already been glued to chipboard. I placed the Aleene’s glue around the bottom edge of the small hill, placed it on chipboard and weighed it down with a heavy book allowing it to dry for a week. Unfortunately, the chipboard was not stiff enough to prevent all curling, though. There is still a slight curve, but it’s acceptable.

    Here’s a close up of the smaller hill. The foam mat is quite easy to cut with a regular pair of scissors. It’s easy to chamfer the edges, too. However, do this before gluing to the chipboard. It gets exponentially more difficult after gluing. So: Cut out the hill; chamfer the edge; glue to cardboard; trim the cardboard to fit the hill.

    The painting process: I put a dab of brown and stippled onto the hill, then the dark green, then the lighter green. It’s quite easy to work with using a plastic trash bag as a table cover/pallette. It only takes a dab of paint. I suspect these two 4 oz tubes will last through the entire yoga mat. I did need to use a stiff brush to paint the edges of the cardboard. That was difficult–well, messy–to get to using a sponge.

    The finished product should match my olive green ground cloth fairly closely.

    After the paint had dried I tried to add some flock to break up the texture. Looked horrible! Luckily, I could wipe most of it off before the glue dried. You won’t be seeing that experiment!

    Self taught, persistently behind the times, never up to date. AKA ~ jeff
    More verbosity: http://petiteguerre.blogspot.com/

    #87170

    Wish I could get that bulk mat material!

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #87172

    Here’s a Portuguese regiment moving up to support an artillery battery on my first completed PVA mat module. The buildings are by our pal Ali, printed at 66% reduction.

     

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #87173

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #87204

    Wish I could get that bulk mat material!

     

    Here’s the link on Amazon (US): https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01LP0UQX4/ref=twister_B071RM52HC?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1

    Thaddeus, you’ve almost convinced me to go with a much lighter color of green for my terrain. Hmmm….

    Self taught, persistently behind the times, never up to date. AKA ~ jeff
    More verbosity: http://petiteguerre.blogspot.com/

    #87218

    Depends on what scale you play with. These mats will be primarily for 6 mm and 3 mm figures. The bases and the background mat thus need to be as light-colored as possible in order to reflect as much light as possible up into the figures. The main choices are thus very light green, yellow, or tan.

    If you are playing 15mm or larger, dark terran might actually higlight your figures better.

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #87236

    That mat just makes me cry, btw. It costs as much as one of my 9 square foot packs of MDA tiles, which are only 5cm thick.

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

Viewing 24 posts - 1 through 24 (of 24 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.