Tag Archives: astroturf

Terrain Workshop: Artificial Grass field terrain.

27 Jun


Ok, not so long back I told you about the freebies you can get from artificial grass suppliers in the way of samples, and I promised you that I’d make something with mine, to help inspire you out there with what kind of thing you can do with them when they arrive.

Before I start, I keep getting folks telling me off for not putting enough pics of the stages in my mini tutorials (Sorry bout that, I get distracted from the fact, and I’ll admit, I do forget sometimes before moving onto the next bit!) So I tried my best to give you some idea of how I got from A to B.

With this being a test piece, I wanted something reasonably simple and easy to do, given that pretty much most of the work is already done with the turf in the first place, a rough field was easiest to do, so opted for that. I took one of the biggish bits I had, using 1cm high blades of grass as my main area and stuck it onto a piece of A4 sized hardboard to start with. This was followed by taking another same sized off cut, this time using 2cm high grass, and cutting it into four strips to use as rough hedges. These were then glued around the edge of the first piece on the board. I used impact adhesive to glue the turf, since the bottom of the turf is rubberised, it ended up being the best bet as my glue supplies were low, but had a large tube of this stashed. You could use a glue gun or even no nails would do, just don’t use superglue as you’ll go through tons of it!





As you can see, by this point I had decided to get some stumpy looking twigs from outside and add some rocks and texture in parts with milliput, mainly to cover up any unsightly edges at the base of the turf. I usually wouldn’t waste milliput like this, but use real pebbles and rocks glued on, but I was lacking any superglue/suitable adhesive, so milliput was the next best thing (remember, I didn’t want to spend anything on making this, so my plan was to just use what I had at hand in my stuff) These were all left to dry overnight. You may also notice that once the turf was stuck down pre milliput etc, I had a good hack at the turf with a pair of scissors. This was to create more an excercise in getting rid of the uniformity of the height of the turf at the edges. If you do the same, make sure you do it outside or get something to catch the debris, the bits get everywhere!

Once the Milliput was cured, I painted it and the base with earth brown artists acrylic, and again left it to dry.


Next, I set to painting in the textured milliput with browns and greys,and highlighted the tree trunks with several stages of lighter brown, and then I set to work on trimming it a little more into a more naturalistic shape.




I flocked the edges using first, an earth brown, then dark green, and finally some light green static grass to highlight. Pretty simple effort with PVA glue, which took me all of 15 minutes. As you can make out the rough foot path, which was achieved by lightly flocking the turfs surface with the brown flock again to give the effect of a well trodden path through the field. There’s also a ditch running down the inside edge of one of the hedges at the front, which has included some tiny dried leaves I found from outside (which were well dried out)

These little leaves were added to the hedges too, and some other dried flower stuff I had going spare. These were great as they were tiny flower buds and along with other detrius, some modelling lichen, twiggy bits etc, were all affixed with plenty of PVA. Lichen was also added to the trunks of the trees to simulate a bit of growth, and down the side of the path, as little scrubby brush foliage. I would have preffered more substantial stuff, but this was all left over stuff I had, so I did my best to make it look overgrown and sort of natural.

Thats about it, easy to make and pretty much free. Here’s a few pics of it in situ with some other 28mm terrain.







I’ll be trying some more of these, as they are pretty generic and so long as the grass isn’t really long, it’ll suit both 28mm and 15mm games. It’s not great mind blowing terrain, but its nice, serviceable scenics that everyone should have in their collection, and best of all free!!

I hope I have given you some ideas of what to do with this stuff, even so this was really basic with very little effort, there are loads of things that this turf can be used for. Next time I intend to go crazy with it and make something far more ambitious (of which, I’m not sure, I’ll let you know when I’ve made my mind up!)

Peace out…

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Grim’s Modelling Tips: Fake Grass Freebies!

13 Jun


So, I have found something out completely by accident that is excellent for us scratch builders & wargamers, yet the best thing is, it wont cost you a penny!

A while ago, my missus and I were talking about turfing a few patches of bare earth in our garden and discussing options. Rather than shelling out for real grass turf, we thought we’d explore the artificial astroturf route, being that our kids are kinda destructive at the best of times and that real grass would take a real beating with their antics. I decided to get some prices & info about it, and discovered that most suppliers of the stuff, actually are willing to send out small samples of the various grades and styles of it.

This lead me on to thinking, just maybe this stuff might be useful as a potential free modelling material. Soon enough I was using my Google-fu to track down any places I could snag plenty of the sample freebies for my, Ahem’ “garden design research” (Which is what I told the wife!!) knowing full well that when she’d had a good look at all the info etc, all the left over samples of the stuff would be mine to butcher and create some new wargaming scenery!

Sure enough, within a week I was inundated with a variety of sizes and styles of the wonder turf, to be honest I hadn’t expected just the volume of what I had managed to blag in the way of sample bits (There are lots)


Ok this pic is just a few pieces that I have now, as you can see there’s a 15mm Pliim adventurer for scale of the bits. They do come in a lot of different sized samples, from A4 page sized, to smaller squares, rectangles and circles. At this moment of writing I have two full to bursting large plastic carrier bags, stuffed full with every style and thickness of artificial turf! Not bad for nothing, delivered free to your door!!

Now not that I’m going to encourage you lot to start blagging every available fake grass supplier in your nation (Even so, if you really wanted, I couldn’t stop you….!) but these are great materials with plenty of terrain making potential. To further just how good these could be for wargaming, I even spotted a trader at the recent Sheffield Triples 2013, selling offcut bits of these to use as fields and crops !


You can see from the close up, the length of the fibres for each type would suit many different options, from the short cheap stuff (Ideal for just grassed areas) to the longer more expensive “realistic” types being suited for things like long grassy unkempt fields, jungle undergrowth, and even cut into strips, stuck on bases with added flock/scatter to create quick and easy bushes and hedging!  Even cut into little bits to add tufts and scrub to other stuff, the things you can create from this with a bit of imagination are myriad!!



As you can see from these pics, you don’t even need to do anything to it to make use of it (Although I would recommend adding stuff like bases, flock and bits to really make it come to life a tad more) I’m sure that you could really go to town with this stuff and create some pretty impressive bits with very little effort. It can even take some haircutting to trim if it’s too long, or you need some barer bits etc.

So those in the UK will be easily satisfied with a quick google search for free samples, and those in the rest of the world will need to find suppliers where they are and enquire for free samples from their end. You could even try DIY/hardware/Garden centres and just ask for some offcut samples (although you’ll need to blag a bit, so don’t tell them you want to use it for wargame modelling materials! Tell em’ you can’t decide what kind you need for your lawn or something! You know, make it up!!)

Anyway, if I have inspired any of you to create something using the info, please let me know, show me some pics and i’ll post them up here (and I’ll show you my efforts too, that is, when I get around to it, busy, busy, busy….!)

Peace out Freebie hunters….

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