Apr 122007

Just finished assembling the CastleWorks gatehouse, and replaced the cardstock drawbridge with a scratch-built foamcore door. I’m going for a look that will fit in with the Mordheim skirmish game, so this CastleWorks build will have a gloomy and ruined tone to it.

Gate with Rat

Assembling the Gatehouse

The gatehouse went together pretty easily. The full assembly includes a working drawbridge and two levels, but for my build I only wanted a single level and also wanted to replace the drawbridge with a door so it would fit the “ruined city” look of the Mordheim game a little better.

Below the first part of the gatehouse has been put together. It bulges a bit at the sides – probably due to a mistake of some kind on my part – but it all came out OK in the end. The ramp and roof of the first level still need to be glued into place. The two white spots on either side of the base (with “glue here” icons on them) are for wooden assemblies involved with the drawbridge. Since I’m not planning on a drawbridge, I’ll be covering thes up with rubble in a later stage.

Gate In Progress

Next the ramp leading up to the door from the inside and the roof are glued into place. There is a bit of an opening where the front edge of the roof meets the crenelations. This doesn’t bother me, since I am planning on having some assorted rubble piles along the gate roof and wall tops anyway – I’ll just cover this crack with dirt / rubble. The bulge along the sides was cured when the roof was glued into place. Happy day!

Completed Gate from Above

Scratch Building A Door

Not being a fan of the thin cardstock drawbridge, particularly for a castle in the middle of a ruined city block, I decided to try my hand at my own door. I had a few plastic doors from castle sets rattling around, but none were going to fit, so I had to build it myself. Foamcore seemed the best material. I cut out the drawbridge that came with the gatehouse, traced its outline onto black foamcore, and cut the foamcore out. Then I cut it in half, intending for one half of the door to be intact and the other half to be shattered and lying outside the gatehouse.

Gate Door Unpainted

I used a xacto knife to gouge up the ruined half of the door, and a putty sculpting tool to trace wood-grain lines into the foamcore. I cut out some metal braces from white cardstock and glued them onto the foamcore of the intact door with my glue pen. Then I sculpted the crossbeam out of green putty, and traced wood lines into it with the sculpting tool. Finally I poked some holes here and there and stuck in some little cookie decoration round-thingies for studs. Painted the whole thing dark brown, then dry brushed metal for the studs and diaganol braces and lighter shades of brown onto the wood. I used wire from a flower shop to make rods to attach the door to the gatehouse, glued them into the bottom and top edges of the door, and painted them brown. Then I poked a couple of holes into the gatehouse for the wires to slot into. It’s not a perfect fit, but it does swing open and closed and look reasonably good in all positions.

Next, I’ll base a couple of walls and this gatehouse, to get a really finished look and act as inspiration to finish the rest of the CastleWorks build!

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