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"Avoiding the "pitcher's mound" effect" Topic

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5,523 hits since 22 Feb 2012
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HistoryPhD22 Feb 2012 1:19 p.m. PST

Ive recently gotten back into wargaming after a long absence and I've gone heavily for 6mm. I never have been able to tolerate straight flocking of my bases because of the "pitcher's mound" created by the bases of the figures in relation to the base I have them mounted on. Given that this is 6mm and the figures are quite close together (but not all on one attached strip), last night I resloved to experiment. I have some Woodland Scenics Flex Paste and I figured I'd just trowel a strip of it down between the bases of the figures with my mini putty knife and I'd be done and dusted. Well…

So now I'm soliciting ideas of how other 6mm gamers overcome this problem. Do you lay a small worm of Milliput in the gap and then flatten it out? Exactly how does everyone else handle this project?

BTW, take my word for it, although I love the stuff for other projects, DON'T use Flex Paste :-(

Angel Barracks22 Feb 2012 1:32 p.m. PST

I use vallejo white pumice and fill in the gaps.
I apply with an old paint brush.

Not my finest work but you get the idea.




J Womack 9422 Feb 2012 2:52 p.m. PST

Nice work AB.

Striker22 Feb 2012 3:13 p.m. PST

I haven't painted up 6mmm in a while but on my 28s I mix white glue and some decorative sand that makes a thick paste and coat the new base with it up to the level of the minis base. Much like AB's work but a homemade paste.

Garand22 Feb 2012 3:26 p.m. PST

I use several techniques…

For 15mm Ancients like Striker I use sand mixed with glue to build up to be feet of the figures. The only differences are that I use wood glue instead of white glue, and use colored sand close to the tone I'm looking for (i.e. natural for desert, brown for mud, funky colors for SF subjects).

For 28mm I use modelers paste, which is an acrylic paste or gel, to build up. I do this because I individually base all my 28mm figures, and I can make a neater edge on the base by cleaning it with a wet finger. I used to use epoxy paste for this (for absolutely permanent mountings!) but that became too messy to use…

For RPG figures (always 28mm), I invest mroe time and work. I use plastic slotta bases (usually 25mm round), cut out the center so that the figures base can fit in, then fill the gaps with epoxy. This should leave a relatively flat base, and avoids the "pitcher mound" look you can sometimes get…


CPT Jake22 Feb 2012 4:06 p.m. PST

I do mine in a similar manner to Angel Barracks, but have bought a big jar of an acrylic gel mix from a craft store. I have a couple, a course pumice mix and a smoother mix. They are made by Golden and each 8 ounce jar was about 5-6 bucks.

Before I got those I was using a 5 pound bag of some finely ground paper mache type dry mix I got at a model rail road store. Add water and some paint, mix it up and again used it in a very similar manner to what Angel Barracks shows.

Ping Pong Redux22 Feb 2012 4:28 p.m. PST

I use wood filler which is pretty cheap and easy to use.

Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian22 Feb 2012 4:39 p.m. PST

You can use a terrain gel product, such as the ones sold by Renaissance Ink.

You can use a plaster/spackle type product.

(See Workbench articles here, here, here and here)

You can put down a thick level of adhesive, then plant the figures into the adhesive so that it covers the bases. I've been experimenting doing this with two-part epoxy takes some practice to know how much epoxy to put down, and you have to keep the figures erect until the epoxy sets. See Workbench article here.

You can use a wood filler-type product, but make sure you get the kind that harden as they dry.

HistoryPhD22 Feb 2012 4:53 p.m. PST

I have tried Elmer's wood putty, but it seems to be quite reluctant to adhere to the bases. I think something Spackle-like is my next attempt.

HistoryPhD22 Feb 2012 5:00 p.m. PST

I have tried Elmer's wood putty, but it seems to be quite reluctant to adhere to the bases

Cheriton22 Feb 2012 5:47 p.m. PST

I use (in USA) things like DAP Vinyl Spackling, works a treat if you let dry overnight. In any DIY (OSH, Lowe's, etc) one will find several brand names of this sort of "patching" for wall repair in 8oz containers.

While wet you can add various bits (grasses, etc.) for terrain effect. Also while still soft submerge small pebbles partially to get a realistic effect.

Nothing looks worse ("lunar" or "Martian") than just sticking rocks on top of your base covering. Look at real terrain rocks are always sitting in the ground to one degree or another.


combatpainter Fezian22 Feb 2012 7:10 p.m. PST

Wood filler cracks

Legionaire2222 Feb 2012 10:22 p.m. PST

I use Red Devil light weight wall spackling. It weighs almost nothing, is easy to apply, cleans up with water, can be thinned with water and dries very quickly. With a little sand and paint on top it is as durable as anything else.

laptot23 Feb 2012 7:59 a.m. PST

Bondo scratch paste (used for autobody work) used straight or thinned with acitone works great as the viscosity can be adjusted to suit and it can be brushed on. It's three times faster than troweling on wood paste or spackle. I also use a flex shaft with a bur to remove the protruding corners of bases.

Bondo creates an nice flowing ground onto which one can place patches of sand, flocking, or tufts.

The gel and pumis products sold in arts stores, I did not like. Harder to apply and never dried hard.

Cerdic23 Feb 2012 8:42 a.m. PST

I use a thick gloopy layer of PVA glue (also known as white glue or wood glue) with a load of sand chucked on top. Wait for the glue to dry and shake off the excess sand. Paint/flock etc. Job's a good 'un!

Very cheap too. A one litre tub of glue costs about 7 quid and lasts for ages. Sand is free at the beach, they've got loads and loads of it!

HistoryPhD26 Feb 2012 9:09 a.m. PST

As I use Adler figures, and Polemos basing, figures get glued down individually and there's always that annoying tiny gap between the bases that needs filling, but it's pretty narrow to try to get into. Too wide to ignore and too narrow for easy access

LeonAdler Sponsoring Member of TMP26 Feb 2012 1:25 p.m. PST

I use either Tamiya texture paint or flock ( use good fine stuff) mixed with wood glue and water. This makes a nice mush thats easy to biuld the base up with and a scalpel, tooth pick and paint brush allows you to get in everywhere between the figs. Being water based if any gets on the figures a wet paint brush zips it off.
Most of our marching strips can be based whole so youve only got the gap between ranks to fill.
ps we are thinking of adding a painting and basing tutorial on the website if there are people that want it.

LeonAdler Sponsoring Member of TMP26 Feb 2012 1:27 p.m. PST

Shhhhhhhhh Id keep quiet about that beach sand, its collecton must contravene Health & Safety regulations……… about something or other.

Elohim27 Feb 2012 4:48 a.m. PST

I use ballast/gravel on the stand *around* the figure bases, then a lighter coat of sharp sand on the the bases and the stand alike. It gives a good effect and a bit of heft too!

CAPTAIN BEEFHEART28 Feb 2012 11:24 a.m. PST

I cut a thin strip of wood or styrene and glue it between the ranks. Flock and scenic material does the rest.

DHautpol25 Apr 2012 6:45 a.m. PST

I use Adler figures and like them packed quite closely on the bases.

I paint the bases of the figures with the Grass Green from the Colour Party range and, once the figures are glued to their bases, I texture the bases using Coat d'Armes Muddy Green, for 15mm and 25mm I use Green Basetex (also Colour Party). Both products are essentially a type of fine grit mixed into acrylic paint to give a textured paste; the Coat d'Armes product has a finer texture than the Basetex which is why I use it more for 6mm.

I apply it using a long bristled brush, usually a 2, as the flexibility of the brush allows me to manoeuvre the paste between the figures. This works much better than using a cocktail stick or similar and the brush can be rinsed out if the paste starts to build up on the brush.

When dry, the edges can be cleaned up and finished off with the Colour Party Grass Green. I will then drybrush with a deep yellow to give greater depth to the textured surface.

Elenderil25 Apr 2012 8:18 a.m. PST

On 25mms I used PVA adhesive and sand then added flock as required. For 6mm I'm still experimenting. I just bought some model railway fine ballast and some mixed flock so thats going to be the first combo.

R Strickland Fezian14 May 2012 7:22 p.m. PST

Pre-mixed concrete patch is the dream material you're after. I get Custum brand from Home Depot. The secret is you can thin it with water and then you can apply it with a wax carving tool or whatever's handy and shape it with an old damp brush. It's rock hard when dry, glues better than than glue, and has a gritty texture more "scale" than sand.

Ram Kangaroo17 May 2012 5:15 a.m. PST

I've used tile grout. Works very well and can be coloured prior to mixing with acrylics. Washes up easily.

I'd be interested in tyring spooktalker's suggestion.

Erasmus Philomel25 May 2012 6:55 a.m. PST

I put down a pea-sized blob of Liquid Nails (a glue that can be found in any big-box DIY store and most hardware stores her in the US) and push the figure down into it. The glue will ooze out around the base and can be smoothed with a wet finger to taper down to the edge of the base.

Liquid Nails is cheap and holds very well, it comes in toothpaste sized tubes and larger ones as well.

QUATERMASS08 Oct 2021 5:56 a.m. PST

I use milliput 2 part epoxy putty for Jobs such as this if you wet your hands while mixing soften up nicely and you can spread on to the base like butter with a craft knife once dry
If can be filed,sanded or scrapped with a craft knife. Once I made a whole base out of milliput on a large resin model the base is 3.5 inches across and has been dropped more than once without damage to the base.

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