Thursday, March 8, 2012

Mile Fort, Pt.1

YAWNNNNNN! Seems I just woke up. What year is this? .........Yeah, it's been a while. I kind of took a break over the holidays, and anything I did was just playing around. No projects, and nothing worth a picture.

Until about a month ago. I made the mistake of tuning in midway on RotK while surfing the channels. The next day I dragged out all my GW Lord of the Rings minis, and started taking inventory. One of the boxes contained all of the terrain pieces. I had the contents of the Mines of Moria box, as well as three sets of the ruins that came with the original box set. I have always liked them, even though I felt them to be a little sparse.

 Hmmm, not very imposing.

So I'm looking at this piece, deciding how to bulk-it-up, when I wondered what this ruin looked like before it was a ruin. What kind of structure must it have been? As I looked closer, I saw that it was made up of simple geometric shapes, all straight lines and no curves. I took some measurements and found I had styrene shapes the same size as all the components. I had already made some jigs for my Chopper that would produce the triangular shapes, so I began fabricating and extrapolating.

 It only took a few hours until I had this. I increased the height of the wall to accommodate the larger doorway, as I wanted it to be accessible to cavalry. Besides, the shorter wall just seemed puny.

Still wasn't sure exactly where I was going with this, but decided to balance the wall with another opening. Called it the Porch, was designed as an archer's platform to defend any troops exiting the door. That's Haldir doing the honors.

To further protect the door, I made this two-sided wall. It shields exiting cavalry from missile fire, and prevents an enemy from using a ram. There is a ledge on the inside for more archers, as again demonstrated by Haldir.

There is a lot more to this project, so come back soon.  Don


  1. Hi Don,

    seen this on last alliance forum. Such a great job. Details are what stand out the most. I'm impressed. Wanted to ask you, what materials are you using and any tips on how could I achieve that level of details? (Note, I'm a beginner).


  2. Sorry it has taken me so long to reply, my life has been in a state of flux these last few months. As far as materials, I am a confirmed styrene plastic man. It is cheap, readily available, and easy to work. Basically all you need to start is a scribe, sharp xacto knife, and a straight edge. (A razor saw is nice to have too.) Use liquid cement applied with a brush. Like all endeavors, practice makes perfect, and even after 40 years of doing this, I still make mistakes. I can tell you I routinely trash or rework projects, even after hours of work. As for detail, save any small, interestingly shaped pieces and parts you find. If you are a model builder, save any unused parts in a 'Bitz Box.' If you haven't already, start visiting '' It is a great resource for tips and techniques, and you may still find some of my articles.