die Sturmadler

For the launch of Amazing War Stories, I am going to run an Airship Over the Ardennes game at Historicon 2006. This is the third installment of my progress. (Click on any of the images for a larger version.) This will also be the last update before Historicon as I have a lot to do and have to save some surprises for the convention.

Two weeks to Historicon and I'm still hard at work on this beast of an airship. She's turning out as nice as I hoped but it is time consuming to cut all the pieces by hand. And if one piece is not cut straight or is even a fraction to big or small, it means starting on that piece from scratch. Needless to say, I have a ton of useable scraps left over. To the left is the painted gasbag (or base) for the airship. This was down and dirty with two cans of Krylon gray primer. It took two coats to cover as some of the paper towel areas had not gottena good dose of the white glue and they soaked up the primer. That's the reason for the mottled appearance in the picture.

The body of the structure is what I am most pleased with. You can see the assembled piece to the right. There are three different pieces there: the larger hanger/crew area, the tower, and the control room. The hanger has four different entrances, the tower two, and the control room just one (?). I've used about 5 exacto blades on this section alone. As each blade got dull I tossed it, even if it still had some good cutting life in it. I've found that a sharp blade leads to less miscuts and so I took the "better safe than sorry" method. The white strips along the top of the hanger are matte board, cut provide a snug fit for the roof. It hides all the foam of the roof and helps keep the building in shape. The railings are made of one of my new favorite materials... chicken wire. The stuff is being use for the railings as well as the ladder seen below in the tower. And I used it for the gas bag as well.

Below is the tower that leads to the control room. There is a hole cut in the roof of the hanger for the ladder to come through, then there is a piece of plastic, needlecraft type material that I picked up in a craft store that makes good flooring. I used in the warehouse I built for Historicon last year. There is the chicken wire ladder in the back. It comes up through a second level of the plastic needlecraft stuff and then continues up into the control room (see below). I built the tower so that the control room will come off and the two side walls will also come off. It makes it much easier to have action occur inside this way.

To hide the foam seam on the corners of the control room, I have cut some old cardstock (it used to be comic book backing but I had lots extra). These were cut to shape as seen in the picture to the left and then the back was scored with a sharp blade (but not cut all the way through) and then folded along the scoring. I find that scoring cardboard with a sharp knife makes folding much easier and cleaner.

My glue of choice though this whole things has been Elmer's Wood Glue. I have found it to be a happy medium in terrain construction in that it sets slowly enough that you have a minute to adjust a piece, but it is far stronger than regular white (PVA) glue.

Below-left is a shot into the control room, showing its division into two rooms and the ladder coming up through the entrance room. On the right is a picture of the stairway that will be on the right side of the hanger building and leading up to the roof. Again, this is made with foamcore and some ore of the needlecraft pieces to simulate the grating of the metal stairway. This is being built as another seperate piece so that it can be moved and stored carefully for travel.

This has been the most modular piece of scenery I have built and I am happy with how it has all come together so far. All the pieces come apart and can be broken down for easy transport.


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