Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Blue Max Battle Mat

After completing my 1/300 scale WWI aircraft I realised they needed a hex mat to battle over. I was originally going to spray paint one of our old white sheets with a green paint and then trace a hex pattern over it. Then, one day, as I was wandering through our local Spotlight store with my wife and kids, I noticed some curtain fabric on sale. It was just what I wanted to represent the countryside of France in WWI so I bought a couple of metres and brought it home with me.

My next task was to figure out how to put a hex grid pattern onto the mat. I found this site where you could create your own grided maps and download them in pdf format. I created a hex grid of the size I wanted and printed it out on A4 paper. I then copied the hex grid several times onto a larger sized A3 paper. Once I'd done that, I stuck a pin through all the points of the hexes to create tiny holes where the lines met. I then held the paper over the fabric and put a dot with a black pen through the holes in the paper. The paper was smaller than the battle mats so I carefully moved it once I'd made the dots, carefully lining it up so the hexes didn't drift. Once I had all the dots on the fabric I carefully drew the lines to create the hexes. Voila! It was a bit of a pain doing this so if you know an easier way let me know.

I make sure to store the battle mat crushed up in the box in which I store my aircraft. This gives it creases which gives the illusion of terrain undulations.

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