New river boards

09 Apr
New river boards

As indicated earlier this year, I decided, that I needed to do some new terrain. But to be honest the one thing that I made top priority was new river pieces. So much so, that I actually tackled this mission last year. 😉 Why? Well you might remember, that I remodelled my terrain boards and along with it, the hillside pieces (which I also used for my rivers). Which meant that I flocked the hillsides over with staticgrass to make them more robust. Back when I did that, I looked at streams around here and many had grass down to almost the waters edge, so I thought I could live with it, but to be honest… I could not. This is what it looked like, and frankly, it looked *bleep* IMHO.

Clash at the ford

The old look by combining he hillside pieces with varnished boards

So now it was on to something new. So I took pink foam (which is only available in very strange sizes here in Germany, so it involved an awful lot of re-cutting to even get the boards to my normal 50cm x 50cm size) and carved the banks out. They were sanded, glued to varnished HDF boards painted first with structured paint and then in browns and greens, flocked and the other normal bells and wistles. I also added bushels of pigs fair to simulate reeds growing in the water and some grey ballast for rocks in the river that have surfaced due to slightly low water levels. All in all, enough boards to fill almost my whole table (at minimum size though). And here they are (I deliberately left any other terrain off the boards for these photos):





Obviously there are a number of regular straits and the same applies here. They are slightly bendy, have mildly sloping banks (to make fording tanks still look good) a bit of driftwood and the already mentioned reeds and rocks. There are also four 90° bends to make sure I make the river flow anywhere on the table.

Riverboards close up

Riverboards close up

Riverboards close up

Riverboards close up

Riverboards close up

Riverboards close up

But I also wanted some special boards. The most simple one is the swampy board. Actually, this is pretty simple. I made the river pretty wide, roughened the water up a bit along the banks and added more reeds and here it is.

Tau Stealth suits on the swamp board

Tau Stealth suits on the swamp board

But one also needs places to cross the river. Up first is the short bridge. Now this one was actually quiet simple, since I simply recycled my old bridge and fitted it into the new river.

Bundeswehr on the small bridge

Bundeswehr on the small bridge

And then there is the ford to replace the improvised old version you could see in the first picture. Again, the ford area was roughened up, painted slightly different, rocks and reeds and it was done.

Byzantine cavalry crossing the ford

Byzantine cavalry crossing the ford

The ford board

The ford board

So to come full circle, why did I not post pictures earlier? Well I wanted a new larger and more impressive bridge. But I did not have the time to do this until last week. The board itself was done last year and I only left the cut-out to fit the bridge in. So last week I finally did the bridge. I cut some of the pink foam left-overs from last year up and carved stones out. I have to say, this is the first time I have ever carved anything out of pink foam and I was a bit anxious, but I am really happy with the results.

Königstiger on the large bridge

Königstiger on the large bridge

Napoleonic French crossing the large bridge

Napoleonic French crossing the large bridge

This will not be quiet the end to my river project. There will be simple wooden bridges, pontoon bridges and the likes, but those will be build in a way that they just fit the straits. And there will be a dedicated board with a water mill, but I am not sure when I will find the time to do that!

Well, hope you liked this. Now on to the next terrain project!


Posted by on April 9, 2014 in Terrain building


Tags: ,

33 responses to “New river boards

  1. Stefan (aka. Monty)

    April 9, 2014 at 06:53

    Hi Burkhard,

    sehr schöne Platten. Klasse !


    • Burkhard

      April 9, 2014 at 07:02

      Danke! Dein post zur Bearbeitung von Styrodur vor etlichen Monaten (oder sogar Jahren) war mir ein große Inspiration beim Zuschnitt!

      Thank you! Your post regarding the cutting of pink foam many months (or even years) ago was a great inspiration while cutting it all up!

  2. Thomas

    April 9, 2014 at 06:54

    Great work!

  3. Darrell Hindley

    April 9, 2014 at 08:40

    Really wonderful looking stuff mate.


  4. Michael Awdry

    April 9, 2014 at 08:45

    These are sensational, I love everything about them especially the added details like the driftwood and reeds.

    • Burkhard

      April 9, 2014 at 09:10

      Thank you Michel. Means a lot to me. I have to say, I was torn weather or not to add these things, since… well if it looks bad one can only start from scratch. So I am glad others like these things, too!

  5. Andrew “Loki” Saunders

    April 9, 2014 at 08:58

    Lovely Work Burkhard

  6. John Michael

    April 9, 2014 at 10:34

    Very very impressive great job, I will look forward to seeing them in action.


    • Burkhard

      April 9, 2014 at 11:20

      Thank you John! You should be able to see them soon enough… i am very keen to give them a proper outing (as they were already used as the western board edge for the Möckern game).

  7. vonpeterhimself

    April 9, 2014 at 11:34

    Very nice river boards. Some nice photos too … especially the Napoleonic French fleeing Germany back to France in 1813!! 8O)

    I’m looking forward to the watermill board! 8O))

    von Peter himself

    • Burkhard

      April 9, 2014 at 11:40

      Thank you vP!

      Well I guess that is the direction any good follower of Napoleon should be heading! 😉

      The mill might take some time. Hope to get it done this year, but it might get carried on until the next.

  8. Peeler

    April 9, 2014 at 13:34

    Very nicely done 🙂

  9. Kuan Hua

    April 9, 2014 at 13:59

    Extremely impressive gaming terrain. 🙂

    • Burkhard

      April 14, 2014 at 11:10

      Thanks Kuan!

      (And sorry for replying only now… your comment got stuck in the spam filter!)

  10. Phil

    April 9, 2014 at 14:02

    Stunning work with this river, pictures are really impressive…Congrats!

    • Burkhard

      April 10, 2014 at 06:53

      Thanks Phil! Actually not too easy to pictures in the game room. I originally tried to take the pictures outside but the weather has turn bad here (just one week after our first outdoor game of the year :-() and every time I had everything set up I had to rush it back in, since it had started to pour down!

  11. monty

    April 9, 2014 at 17:07

    Superb work, Burkhard! I loved your old rivers but this is tops.

    • Burkhard

      April 10, 2014 at 06:54

      I agree that it was good, but I was never happy with it and felt there was room for improvement, so I simply HAD to do this!

  12. Millsy

    April 9, 2014 at 23:26


  13. Ray

    April 10, 2014 at 05:07

    Very very nice!!!

  14. Curt

    April 15, 2014 at 19:21

    Excellent work Burkhard – Bravo!

  15. Robert Czekański

    August 27, 2014 at 10:44

    Hi! Have you somewhere pics from building the large bridge?

    • Burkhard

      August 28, 2014 at 17:29

      Robert, unfortunately not. If it helps you, I could try to do another piece of terrain this year using the same technique!

  16. 40kterminatus

    January 16, 2015 at 08:27

    Lovely terrain and I especially like the picture of the King Tiger on the bridge😛

    • Burkhard

      January 19, 2015 at 11:47

      Thank you!

      The Königstiger is the largest WWII tank model I have and I build the bridge with the explicit idea, that it should fit over it. It does by a hairs width… it is a shame though that I forgot that one of my Tiger is modeled with bend skirts! 😀


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