Build Mini War Gaming Bunker Hill -Free




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This instructable will show you how to create several different items for your favorite table top mini war game.  Its suggested that you read through the whole process before attempting, and be creative. 


Step 1: Materials

The first thing you are going to want to do is gather your materials, this can include nearly anything from wire to pop cans.  To build the featured hill you will need to start with poly styrene this is a dense insulation for the inside of commercial/industrial building foundations and can be found at nearly any hardware store, or on a construction site (ask your Foreman before you grab some).  You may also require Foam Board if you are building a bunker this material is easy to work with and is fairly cheap, it can be found at most craft stores (Micheal's) or places that sell stationary items (Staples), it is basically a foam sandwich with paper making up the bread.  Finally the one material you will need to build most terrain is box board (card stock), from cereal or a beer case, not corrugated board but there is a use for that i may get into later.  Don't be afraid to experiment with different items go check out your recycle bin for odds and ends, straws and pop or soup cans can also work well.  You may want a hand full of 1/4" gravel this will be helpful to cover up the gaps when you put your buildings together.  Finally Gather your tools you will definately need a utility knife something to draw with (Pen or Pencil) a Ruler is very important -one with a metal edge works best- scissors a steak knife and some cheap white glue. 

Step 2: Lay Out the Project

Rough cut the poly styrene with the utility knife, make a slope on one side cliff faces on the adjacent sides and a ledge on the opposite side of the slope. 
Break some toothpicks in half, stab them part way into the polystyrene and add dabs of glue around them, press fit all the pieces together.
Let the glue dry!!

Step 3: Rough Construction

Trim the sides down to tapper them and make the shape of a rock and or hill.  also rough cut out a void in the sloped side opposite to the ledge, this will soon become the entrance to the bunker.

With a steak knife stab 45 degree down and out motion slices into the foam, don't be afraid to cut too much off or too deep it can be worked the less perfect the better.  You can also use a slicing motion to create long slopes or sharp cliff faces. 
Do not cut into the void and do not cut, trim or shape the ledge. 

Step 4: Building the Entrance

Measure out all the sides of the void, the top "roof" sides and a door face.  This part of the project will make the bunker entrance appear to be build into the stone cliff face. Remember when sketching the parts and cutting to leave room on the foam board for trimming and over laps, when building exposed mini "concrete" walls like this use two pieces of foam board to make it thicker for realism of a big heavy concrete wall, and only cut one piece at a time unless necessary to cut more at a time (for fitting parts).  Cut door ways and windows big enough for a character to pass through it and shoot out it, if not try adding some blown out walls by cutting the foam board into broken buildings.  foam board is very useful and the best way to create mini war gaming buildings, be creative, I'll post more at a later date. 

Step 5: Constructing the Bunker

Measure the length and width of the ledge, build a roof to fit the maximum height remembering the thickness of the foam.  Build a piece 5 inches wide 1 inch tall and cut the corners on 45 degree angles, check the fit and build another. 
Once you have built a satisfactory roof slab build walls, just one piece of foam because the face will cover the edges. The height is around 1 and a half inches to the bottom of the roof or the "ceiling" build a wall about 1/2 inch wide by the measured height this is the wall, check the fit and build another. 
Building the bunker face, This process can be repeated many times to build different shapes sizes and types of structures foam board is great for model buildings. The front wall will be as tall as the side walls and the length from the outside of both walls, the window is in the center and the smaller window in the back is the repeated piece but 1/4 inch smaller, glue it all in place and let it dry.  When dry glue some gravel on to cover the cracks and move on.

Step 6: Build the Cannon

Finish those milk shakes and grab your prescription drug bottles we're building a Space Cannon, or Telescope!
Cut a few 1 inch strips from the card stock, roll it length wise and wrap it under the cup lid (where the cup would normally be) mark this length, cut and glue it to the lid.  It helps having some paper clips handy to hold the card in place with the plastic, just be patient let the glue dry!
Glue the lid from the prescription bottle to the hole in the lid (where the straw came out) check the fit of the prescription pill bottle on an angle, cut some of the 1 inch strip into doors around pill bottle and glue the bottle in the center of the doors (Gorilla Glue or Krazy Glue the bottle and lid, way faster and easier). Place the lid and bottle on some scraps and let it dry!
Glue this in place on the very to of the rock.
Get ready to paint

Step 7: Paint Like a Rock

Grab brushes, a big 1 or 1/2 inch and some smaller detail brushes, also paint, grey, white, silver and rust or brown.
Once all the Water based Matt Black primer has dried paint the whole rock grey, but leave some deep black areas showing, and don't paint any holes, leave them black.  Next dry brush (this means whipping most of the paint off the brush so it is "dry") white on all the high points, but don't paint the bunker parts these will stay grey.  lastly using a dabbing technique paint the dome part of the cannon using dabbing will make it look more like metal.  Finally from the top pill bottle lid add some streaks of rust, this can be done with a detail brush an just make small swipes and add them to make them longer and wider as needed remember not to try to be perfect it looks better if u try less!!  
If any flat spots have been left, like the top of a hill the base or a less slanted side, place some static grass and or model dirt to these areas. 

Congratulations you have completed a great looking Mini War Gaming Bunker Space Cannon in a Hill thing, I hope you learned lots happy war gaming!!



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    12 Discussions


    7 years ago on Step 7

    lol looks really good but for warhammer 40000 you could put on the top an iterceptor quad gun or icarus pattern lascannon instead of the space cannon/telescope???


    8 years ago on Introduction

    Really well done, I love making Mini War gaming Terrain pieces and painting Warhammer. ( I don't play though for some reason :P ) Will definitely try this out. Here is a picture of a bunker I made.

    3 replies

    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    This is what can be done with foam core but i needed to show what could be done with poly styrene too this is an excelant bunker I'd love to see it on the battle field one day
    keep building


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Its become my hobby it seems to make these terrain pieces and then let them collect dust.... I guess I really should get into playing sometime and put them to good use!

    Quick question where did you get that Water based spray paint because that would sure save a heck alot of time and paint!

    Hope to see some more Instructibles on making mini wargaming terrain.


    King Julien

    8 years ago on Step 7

    What do you do with it? lol it looks really good


    8 years ago on Introduction

    I have to say this looks pretty good :D I have a couple questions if ya don't mind. about how much did the spray paint cost and where did you find it? I've been looking for some water based spray paints for about a week now and I'm thinking I may have to look online. Also do you know if it comes in a large (normal sized) can? I literally have 4 or 5 tables I need to make for a local club ^^; and lastly, what brand basing material are you using? I personally like the colors citadel have, but its too pricey :( Thanks a lot, Neko

    1 reply

    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    The water based paint primer i used was from my local guy at Forbes Hobby its "TAMIYA" TS-6 MATT BLACK small 100ml air spray can cost me $24CDN, Most hobby or craft stores will have something similar you can use acrylic black and grey it works better for a full sized table. The grass and gravel can be found at model train stores, they have lots of supplies including pretty decent looking trees, but those are easier made than bought (next instructable?) The swivel cannon sounds great I'll do that next time!


    8 years ago on Introduction

    Great job--I have friends who are into gaming miniatures. It's not my thing, but they would dig it!


    8 years ago on Introduction

    It might be more fun if instead of gluing the cannon in place, you made a second ring of cardboard sized to fit snugly but not too tightly around the first one and then only attached the outer ring to the mountain. Then the turret would be able to rotate. (And you could hide a figure inside it)

    1 reply