Sometimes the best lessons learned come out of failure. This blog tells a story of such a lesson that came out of an epic fail.
I’ve been working on our newest terrain set – western town tiles. Like the river tiles, the western street tile will all be six inches by six inches and let you arrange them in countless combinations on your gaming table. Personally, I can’t wait for this project to be done so my gaming group can use them for Malifaux as well as our new miniature game Dark Age.
When i sculpt tiles, I use a variety of mediums from different putties, clay, wax and natural materials. Once I’m happy with the finished product, I use silicone to make a mold and then use this mold to make the resin tiles you see on our website.
For the western street tiles, I have been experimenting with a mixture of Green Stuff and Apoxie Putty. It holds detail really well and gives me a few hours of work time before it hardens.
Here is an example of the wooden sidewalk I’m sculpting on the tiles and the streets with the wear marks from the wagons.
My next step is to create a mold using silicone.
The type of silicone I use is mixed at a 10:1 ratio by weight. Our postage scale works double duty for this process.
We use to use a silicone that was mixed at a 1:1 ratio by volume. The reason we switched is that this silicone is a little more durable and allows for more pronounced undercuts ( undercuts are when the piece you are making a mold of has overhangs).
Once I am ready to cast a tile, I attach it to a board amnd create a dam around it using lego. Silicone doesn’t stick to Lego so it is easy to break apart to get your mold.
Here is where the “epic fail” comes into this blog post.
Silicone doesn’t stick to many things. That is why it makes such an excellent medium for mold making. Unfortunately for me, I found out that it does react to Apoxie Putty.
The silicone bonded with the putty and destroyed the mold and my sculpt!
Needless to say, I wasn’t impresed but I did learn a lesson.
So, after doing some experimenting, I found a solution. If I spray the putty with a light coat of an acrylic spray (primer or sealent), the silicone won’t stick and there isn’t a loss of detail.
Now that this lesson has been learned, I’m back on track finishing the western tile set. I’m sure that it will be done pretty soon.
Peace out, eh?