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Well, let me do some math here. As Barbie says, "Math is hard."

 

I get 50 pounds of Hydrostone for about $17.00. According to Google 50 pounds = 22,680 grams. I'll get to the gram thing in a minute.

 

I weigh out my plaster in 200g portions. I can easily cast 2 molds with some extras with 200g.

 

So, doing that math I can cast about 113 molds out of that bag of plaster for a cost of $0.15 per mold.

 

That's not taking in time of course but if you're looking to see what you can get for consumables there you go.

 

Math is hard and I'm no expert but 113 casts per 50lb bag just seemed low to me; and keep in mind people mix theirs differently (I just mix by eye but it's about 3:1 hydrostone:water). I've done at least 100 casts from my current 50lb bag of Hydrostone and It's still over half full. Also just for reference I paid $25.00 for mine.

 

With your 200g you get about 2 casts, right? So thats 100g per cast, check?

 

Then 22,680 / 100 = 226.8; or about 227 casts per bag.

 

Really though; point is... it's Cheap and Good! After your first bag of hydrostone the most significant cost becomes more moulds. There is significant time invested however. Mixing, casting, curing, assembeling, painting... As far as time; it's a labor of love :)

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I've just started with the Hirst Arts molds and have been very happy with how its turning out so far. The initial cost of the molds is a bit high but given the fact that you can use them over and over and the quality of the buildings and terrain you end up with it was an easy decision for me. The building stages are slow but it certainly meets your 'good' choice. Cheap is a varied one because it is a bit expensive to get started but once you are done with the initial costs it takes very little to do more and more and more. The best suggestion here is to decide what you are going to be making the most of and then look over all the molds (and drool because they are awesome) and select the couple that you need to get started. Depending on what you are doing 2 molds can usually get you by for your starting projects and give you time to save up for your next set of molds. The people over at HA are friendly and have great advise, all you need to do is ask. Castlebuilder and Rastl can help you narrow down your selections and let you know what a good starting set would be most likely.

 

 

Hope this helps.

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I saw the Hirst Arts moulds too and they looked like a much better option (I have no problem with making and painting them for the money I'd save, and I'd be less worried about breaking these...) however they don't seem to easily work with a 1" grid(Though the bricks are 1/4" I guess? so it wouldn't be too bad...) - which is what I need as I plan to use these with D&D.

 

So I guess what I'm asking is...

 

In your opinion, what's the easiest/cheapest/best way to get good looking terrain/buildings/walls that I can use with D&D and Reaper minis while keeping a fairly uniform 1" grid throughout it.

HirstArts floor tiles are 1/4" thick, but they are 1" square, making them pretty much perfect for D&D battlegrid compatibility.

 

I recently purchased some WorldWorks Games cardstock model pdf's to supplement my D&D group's HirstArts molds/dental plaster castings. A couple of us who still haven't learned that our wives and children will never again let us have that much free time plan to build a model of the castle our PC's not-so-recently liberated from its former life-challenged occupants, and the HirstArts stuff we already had just didn't quite seem up to the task for all those narrow corridors and stairways and secret passages - the wall bricks are 1/2" thick, so at best, adjacent 5' wide hallways get half their floorspace eaten up by the walls, leaving no room for minis. (At worst, you could place the walls between the floor tiles instead of straddling the line between them, but then as soon as you go around a corner the grid will stop lining up and it all goes to heck as far as movement and spell targetting etc. are concerned. Not sure I've explained that clearly but if you think about it for a bit I think you'll see what I mean)

 

Now that we have those WWG cardstock models, we can actually finally start building - HirstArts 1" tiles for floors and bricks for the exterior walls; paper-thin cardstock interior walls that take up no actual floor space (just like in the Dungeon Magazine module the castle came from). Problem solved.

 

Good luck. Hope that helps,

 

Kang

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I saw the Hirst Arts moulds too and they looked like a much better option (I have no problem with making and painting them for the money I'd save, and I'd be less worried about breaking these...) however they don't seem to easily work with a 1" grid(Though the bricks are 1/4" I guess? so it wouldn't be too bad...) - which is what I need as I plan to use these with D&D.

 

So I guess what I'm asking is...

 

In your opinion, what's the easiest/cheapest/best way to get good looking terrain/buildings/walls that I can use with D&D and Reaper minis while keeping a fairly uniform 1" grid throughout it.

HirstArts floor tiles are 1/4" thick, but they are 1" square, making them pretty much perfect for D&D battlegrid compatibility.

 

I recently purchased some WorldWorks Games cardstock model pdf's to supplement my D&D group's HirstArts molds/dental plaster castings. A couple of us who still haven't learned that our wives and children will never again let us have that much free time plan to build a model of the castle our PC's not-so-recently liberated from its former life-challenged occupants, and the HirstArts stuff we already had just didn't quite seem up to the task for all those narrow corridors and stairways and secret passages - the wall bricks are 1/2" thick, so at best, adjacent 5' wide hallways get half their floorspace eaten up by the walls, leaving no room for minis. (At worst, you could place the walls between the floor tiles instead of straddling the line between them, but then as soon as you go around a corner the grid will stop lining up and it all goes to heck as far as movement and spell targetting etc. are concerned. Not sure I've explained that clearly but if you think about it for a bit I think you'll see what I mean)

 

Now that we have those WWG cardstock models, we can actually finally start building - HirstArts 1" tiles for floors and bricks for the exterior walls; paper-thin cardstock interior walls that take up no actual floor space (just like in the Dungeon Magazine module the castle came from). Problem solved.

 

Good luck. Hope that helps,

 

Kang

 

That's a great idea. The Hirst Arts walls taking up so much space was one of the things I didn't like about them (about the only thing besides the upfront cost really). What Worlds Work Games product did you use for the walls?

 

Olaf the Stout

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The Hirst Arts walls taking up so much space was one of the things I didn't like about them (about the only thing besides the upfront cost really). What Worlds Work Games product did you use for the walls?

 

Olaf the Stout

The Gothic set's walls are pretty good for inside buildings when you need gridline-thin walls. The Cave set has some "floating walls" that might be useful for more natural environs, but I haven't had time to play around with those ones much yet so who knows how useful they will be... The InteriorWorks Castles & Keeps set has some thin walls too, which are significantly less skull-encrusted than the gothic walls.

 

Other than that, I haven't really played around with too many of the other sets I bought yet. But if I come across more good thin walls from other sets I will come back and post again.

 

Good luck!

 

Kang

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I managed to buy some 1" x 1" slate backsplash tiles at my local DIY Building Centre. I bought them with the intention of basing some minis but they would probably also serve as awesome dungeon tiles as well but they may be a little on the heavy side.

If your timing is right, you can get them on clearance like I did. (144 1"x1" tiles for $5)

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Well, let me do some math here. As Barbie says, "Math is hard."

 

I get 50 pounds of Hydrostone for about $17.00. According to Google 50 pounds = 22,680 grams. I'll get to the gram thing in a minute.

 

I weigh out my plaster in 200g portions. I can easily cast 2 molds with some extras with 200g.

 

So, doing that math I can cast about 113 molds out of that bag of plaster for a cost of $0.15 per mold.

 

That's not taking in time of course but if you're looking to see what you can get for consumables there you go.

 

Ok, who's your dealer? I've not been able to find any reasonable Hydrostone source yet :\ Hydrocal? Sure, but I've cast enough hydrocal to know I don't really like it.

 

Back on topic, HA molds are awesome, but they do require some assembly and prep. You can get floor tiles in 1" and 1.5" squares, though those are on seperate molds. The molds run $29~$35 each. About 80g of plaster will fill two floor molds - this will vary based on your mixture. Depending on what you have around the house and how you want to go about things, you may need some ancillary tools:

- plastic cups

- plastic spoons

- 6" drywall knife

- spray bottle and jetdry

- cookie baking tins - I use like 18x10x0.5 tins. They fit two molds at a time. Casting can be a mess. The plaster will overflow the mold in most processes.

 

You can also use resin in the molds, but I've no experience with that.

 

I've said it before, but it bears repeating -- check out local conventions. I took a molding with HA class at Origins that did a very good job going through prep, casting, un-molding and assembly.

 

 

WizKids also put out some 3d dungeon terrain for Mage Knight. It's 1.5" squares, but still usage. It's OOP though it can still be found.

http://www.trollandtoad.com/p108710.html

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