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"Cleaning Laser Cut MDF Bases?" Topic

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504 hits since 26 Jan 2023
©1994-2023 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Personal logo Flashman14 Supporting Member of TMP26 Jan 2023 4:27 a.m. PST

You know the ones I mean sold by Battlefront/GF9 in the Chinese take out boxes at HMGS cons.

They smell wonderful but they sure are ashy. My fingers are blackened after handling and sorting them. Do you rinse them in water, dab with a wet towel? Do they warp?

jdpintex26 Jan 2023 5:59 a.m. PST

I wipe them with a damp cloth/paper towel. Then I hit them with spray primer, sometimes two coats of primer as that mdf sucks up moisture/paint.

Never had any issues with warping after following the above.

Good luck

Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian26 Jan 2023 6:22 a.m. PST

I wipe them with a damp cloth/paper towel.

Sometimes they have some resin on the edges. So I wipe them too. And I seal them with primer sometimes, because I have found the wood can release resin in hot weather. (But I haven't tried the specific bases you're using.)

You could also try using a wide-tip Sharpie on the edges.

Personal logo Sgt Slag Supporting Member of TMP26 Jan 2023 7:16 a.m. PST

MDF is wood pulp fibers mixed with some sort of glue, or resin. If you make model buildings out of it, you really do need to seal it with Wood Sealer, or it will require many coats of paint, as it sucks it down into the fibers.

Once the Wood Sealer dries, the MDF paints up nicely, without being blotchy, or mottled. I use water-based Wood Sealer, without issue, on larger MDF pieces. Works superbly.

I've been using nothing but laser cut MDF bases (25mm x 25mm, 25mm x 50mm, 25mm x 75mm, and 200+ x 50mm squares), for several years now. I would recommend wiping them with a dry, microfiber towel, to gently remove the ash from them. Wear neoprene gloves, to keep the ash off your skin.

I paint my bases with PVA Glue, then I swirl them in a mixture of colored sands, after I have attached the mini's to them. I sometimes need to apply two coats for sufficient coverage, but I gave up painting MDF, long ago. PVA Wood Glue is the best PVA Glue to use, as it is stronger than White Glue. The typical yellow color of the Wood Glue can be an issue if you apply light colored sand to it (does not work for snow bases -- the 'snow' turns yellow -- White Glue only, for snow bases). Cheers!

Warspite131 Jan 2023 3:42 p.m. PST

I use MDF bases with my own Bills, Bows and Bloodshed rules. As an aid to picking up casualty bases and reuniting them with their units I have coloured the front and back edge of the bases in the livery of the unit's jackets.

I also colour code the modules to show morale grades. In this photo the four modules on the left are Elite, the four in the middle are Retinue and the four on the right are Levy.

The four on the left are also light troops/skirmishers and have advantages on rough ground. To remind myself they are in looser formation and I have place rocks to simulate rough ground.


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