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How to cover bases on these minis?

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I got a collection of old minis back that I painted many years ago. I’ve put them on 1” squares for gaming. I’d like to bury their pedestals and give them nicer bases.  Should I just use Vallejo earth texture to build up around the pedestals?  Vallejo white stone? Contour putty?  Green stuff?  I don’t want to hack them off their pedestals and try to pin all their feet...  suggestions?

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Green Stuff and similar products can fit around them easily enough. You can then use a variety of basing materials once you've built up the bases around their original pedestals.

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I've used fine sand and glue. It works great then you can place the grass on top. Plus its a lot cheaper than green stuff or milliput. 

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Both putty/milliput or PVA and flock/sand will work.

If you go for the last option, when dry, spray with a anti shine sealer.

Not only will this seal but it will keep the flock/sand etc in place for a longer period and protect it against falling off during play.

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I use plumber's epoxy putty,  Master Plumber from True Value/Ace is the best. Once it is dry cover areas that are supposed to be soil with watered down tacky glue & sand.

 

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My first choice is Apoxie Sculpt two-part epoxy putty.  (Magic Sculpt and Magic Sculp {sic} are, near as I can tell, essentially the same stuff.)  Mass-wise, it's much cheaper than the green stuff, and I buy it by the tub.  My preferred supplier is Reynolds Materials (a local store), but I've been able to find it online via various online sellers.  It's not as good as the green stuff for sculpting twisty vines or delicate faces, but works well for the sort of detail I put into base texturing, and particularly with press-molds.

 

Once I get the basic shape down, I often use Instant Mold (or Japanese "plastic clay," which I can get more cheaply) to make temporary texture-molds off of some existing textured surface, and then when that cools, use it as a "texture stamp" for putty base detail work, dipping the plastic "stamp" in water to serve as a simple "release."  Another possibility would be to apply some putty to act as gap-filler to turn the base into a small hill rather than a raised dais, and then press some clean kitty-litter into the putty surface to texture it, and then add a few crumbs and lumps of putty that I can work into twisted roots, tree trunks, exposed rocks, mushroom clusters, etc.  It's also a great opportunity to make use of various "bitz" if there's room on the base:

 

* A gravestone for a necromancer, and maybe a spare hand reaching up out of the ground.

 

* Skulls.  As I've learned from the world of Warhammer, you can never have too many skulls.  Or "skullz."

 

* For an archer, a few arrows thrust point-first into the ground.

 

* For some warrior, perhaps a shield from a fallen foe (an excuse to give a little more color "pop" to the base), dropped weapon, etc.  Or, if you want to make it really gruesome, and you have some spare creature "bits," you could always have a piece (tentacle, tail, claw, etc.) hacked off of whatever it was he was fighting.

 

* For the greedy rogue, a massive treasure pile!  I found some puffy glitter "gold" paint that works great for over-the-top piles o' treasure ... though little errant bits of glitter DO have a bad habit of really getting around.

 

* For a pirate character, I might deliberately NOT gap-fill one side of the base, and instead paint the exposed flat area of the lower (square) base as water, with the idea that the character standing on a dock or beach or rocky outcropping right *next* to the water.

 

* For a wizard, I might carve a hint of the edge of a magic circle along one side of the base, or even around the area where the wizard is standing, and use some paperclip ends for candles.  (To do that, clip a length of paperclip that's long enough to represent the candle, a length of wick, and a little extra to embed into the putty to hold it in place, then use a hobby knife to trim a little off one end to expose some wire that will act as the wick.)

 

* Depending upon the setting, and whether you've access to a decent printer, sometimes paper elements can be used to add details to a base as well: a magic scroll (partially unrolled), a treasure map, a wanted poster, the pattern of a magic carpet, etc.

I also found a leaf-shaped "glitter-maker" paper stamp in the paper-crafting section at a craft store (JoAnn Fabric).  I sometimes punch colored paper (brown, yellow, orange, red) with it to make "autumn leaves" to litter a base with -- the leaves are a bit on the big side, but they work well enough for some of my more "Wonderland-themed" minis, or overtly fantasy minis where, hey, maybe the trees there are gigantic, hence so are the leaves.  (One of these days, I might get one of those GreenStuffWorld leaf-punchers, which seem to be closer to gaming scale.)

Too bad you aren't local!  I'd be happy to demonstrate a few basing techniques.  For whatever reason (mostly connected to my poor eyesight), I think I have more fun building up custom bases on minis than I do actually painting the miniatures.

 

 

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I also prefer Apoxie Sculpt. But what everyone else has said pretty much covers it. If I don't want to remove the base I just build up around it. Then I texture it or add other basing as I see fit. 

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20180611_192844.thumb.jpg.8636f7ce3771fd7a5f4c4489b6937bdb.jpg20180611_192900.thumb.jpg.cc246ea5417948b1a2d4794b9662e818.jpgVallejo earth texture works good for this. I bought a tub of it off amazon and I love it. I used it on the base of this bugbear. The original metal base is buried in there. I wanted to keep it because of how his foot is on the tree stump.

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Wow, really cool guys!  You’ve given me a lot to work with. Superthanks!  I’ll post photos when I’m finished with them. 

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I use  oatey fixit stick to fill bases. It’s a plumbers putty.  It has a rapid cure time so it’s not much use for sculpting but is prefect for the sort of jobs green stuff is too expensive for.  A word of warning, you should wear some gloves with it as can irritate your skin.  

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