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Sunday, 4 September 2011

Palm trees for 15mm Force on Force

I decided that I'd like to have some terrain for my USMC and Generic Arabs to fight over and first up I thought I'd get my self some palm trees.
The finished articles with some IrishSerb Humvees and Peter Pig USMC
I wanted some robust models and was happy to have a go at making them myself,  so I ordered a pack of Games Workshop Jungle Trees from our local GW shop. They are no longer a stock item but can be ordered and delivered to the shop for no additional P&P costs at £5 per pack.....bargain.

Years ago they used to come moulded in green (for the leaves) and brown plastic (for the trunks) which made finishing them a very quick and easy job! Today they are in bog standard grey polystyrene, two sprues containing foliage and one the trunks and bases.

In theory there's enough parts for 4 trees at 28mm but with a bit of ingenuity and a little modelling skill, you can easily produce 8 or more usable trees at 15mm.

So how did I build these up?
First step: (as ever) Spray coat of white primer
Second step: Airbrush the foliage with Vallejo Model Air light green camo and the trunks in Khaki
Third step: spray the foliage with GW Thraka Green wash and the trunks Vallejo Sepia Wash
Fourth step: Dry brush foliage with light green camo + yellow mix and the trunks with buff.

Now I was ready to start assembly. As long as you're careful cutting the parts from the sprues you'll not need to touch up the paint job.

As the kit is intended to only produce four trees there are only four bases. There are, however lots of trunk pieces and a few joining collars to extend these. What I tried to achieve when assembling was a more natural look rather than a weird and wacky WH40K tree with branches everywhere at ridiculous angles.

Ultimately, this meant I had rather more trees than bases and some had rather short trunks as I'd run out of joining collars (the kit expects some trunks to be joined by foliage pieces - fine for WH40K universe but a bit odd on planet earth). Therefore, I had to create some bases from Green Stuff.
Easy enough to do and I planted a foliage joiner in each to take the trunks when dry. All these new tree bases and the kit ones were mounted on mdf Warbases for stability.
To get those trunks joined to form realistic height palm trees, I found  some plastic tubing I had from another project that (when cut into 4mm lengths) proved perfect for the purpose.
Finally the assembled, touched up, trees were all based on mdf in ones, twos & threes. The bases had sand added with PVA and a little static grass for effect.
I hope you agree with me that they look the part and will enhance my FoF (or indeed Arc of Fire!) battlefields in the coming months.

Now I need to put that foamboard to good use and come up with some middle east buildings.

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