Posts Tagged ‘Bocage’


I have been playing around with backdrops for a

while now and I decided to take the plunge and

create one myself. So off I went with my trusty

SLR camera and found some French-ish looking

countryside(to be honest a hedge in England looks

just like a hedge in France) and snapped away.

I then paid a princely sum of £10 and got the

picture put onto Matte card.

The pictures below are the result. Beware they are

quite big photos and if you click on an image it

will enlarge.








So how did I get on. To be critical the trees in lower

section are too large and I should of stood back

a bit when taking the photo. The Matte finish seemed

good and I was pleased with the size(300 x900).

Overall it looks fantastic, especially when its behind

your models. I have been to a couple of wargaming shows

this year and as of yet I have seen nothing as good as this

backdrop wise, if anything at all. If you go to a model

railway show they use them to great effect but it seems

wargamers are missing a trick.

Anyway hope you liked them and perhaps it will inspire

a few more people to have a go.

I`m done until I build some more boards and yes

I hear you all groaning… not more boards !!!!

No my next project will be some Infinity boards so

rest easy.

Anyway back to the Normandy boards. I have added and finished

two new boards to make a total of six for the playing

area(4 x 6). The latest two have a nice river obstacle with

hump back bridge. They also contain a fixed defensive trench

line and artillery battery area. The artillery battery area and trench

line are camouflaged to stop the allied Typhoons rocketing the

hell out of place.

Please note you can click on all pictures to enlarge

and some of the pictures are quite big.


I have added a full Panzer Lehr Division and the British 11th

Armoured Division to the board so you can see how it all feels

to play with.

Arty preparing to fire.


Target spotted.


View from above.


Look out the boss is watching.


Life in the trenches.


Ok whos walked mud into the trench ?


British forces prepare to enter the bocage.


Panthers trying to deploy in bocage.


Panzer Grenadiers moving up to join the action.


German infantry moving up.


Panthers stuck in a sunken lane.


MKIV in ambush position.


Moaning minnies at home in the thick hedgerows.


Halftrack traffic jam plus a bit of anti air.


Anybody bring any hedge cutters ?


Hold on, hump back bridge.


Lost Panzer IV.


JagderPanzer IV`s defending the left flank.


Thankfully the sun came out and allowed me to take the

photos above.

I will post up a battle report soon to see how bocage fighting

pans out 🙂

I know, I know I`m still doing the Normandy board

thing lol. Its been on hold for a while but my

creative juice has returned and its back to the

grind stone. I have been working on a small river/

stream and its taken some time to get it right. I hate

the lovely blue rivers you get on most wargaming boards

and wanted something a bit more disgusting looking to be

exact. Thus I need multiple coats of varnish over lots of

greens and browns because that’s the colour of the nearest

stream to me.

Click on a picky to enlarge:




Now I have got the basis of the river in place I can

start to work on the bocage around it. I hope to cover

a lot of the river with overgrown stuff so it really looks

like a silted up, stagnant , slow running river.

Loads more work to do on the trench section and gun battery pits

but that will be a lot easier to do than the river.

Sorry if you thought I was done but I needed

another two boards. Specifically I wanted a

river/stream, a bridge, trenches and just a bit

more bocage.

To save time I borrowed two old flat terrain

boards from the shed and started converting

them. I have made and painted the bridge and

found a pillbox going spare which will look

right at home hidden in undergrowth.

Click on a picture to enlarge :


The two boards look a bit rough but bare with

me because as mentioned they have been re-used.

The first board sits on the left and contains the

trench system I am currently building out of balsa

wood. Its raised ground so will be able to cover

and arty spot all six boards eventually. It will

also be buried under bocage and have a stream

running above it as marked by the stick.


The trench will go under ground at the right hand

side of the board and reappear on the next board.

This way the join marks are nicely concealed 🙂

The board on the right has two artillery emplacements

either side of a road with the stream running in front

of it with a bridge.

The trench system comes in from the left side.


Sorry if the pictures are hard to understand,

but all will become clearer shortly.

More or less finished the four boards. Think I`m

going to do another two with some trenches and

room for a le FH 18 battery.

This post is pic heavy and just click on any

image to enlarge.
















I have been playing around with the camera and

some standard model railway backdrops and this

photo just stood out for me.

“M18 waiting for the Mortain counter attack 1944.”

Just click on the piccy to enlarge.


A certain person with lots of trees on their blog

has inspired me 🙂

There is light at the end of the tunnel 🙂

Finally nearly finished some of the detail including an

orchard, most of the Normandy farm, telegraph poles and bits.

I will let the pictures do the talking.

Click on any picture for a larger image.

The farm house(don’t worry about the chimney):


Rear view of a stable :


A barn:


Telegraph poles in production :


An orchard:




More farm buildings unfinished :


Stay tuned folks 🙂

This is just an update so please don’t get hung

up on the colours as I know they are not quite

correct. The colours I`m talking about are the

various shades of green on the board in the pictures.

I`m still very much in the building up the foliage stage

of things and I intend to correct some of the brighter

colours(eg bright green moss) by toning them down with an


Click on a picture to enlarge:





I plan for telegraph poles, road signs, fences, gates and

anything else you care to mention.

I am aiming to get a main road on the other two boards

running parallel and large a farm by

A word on some of the scenic material being used. I`m

loving using the tall grass by Noch and the large, rough,

open area is a job lot of Model-Scene scree.

Next step is to get some trees into that bocage.

Until next time 🙂

Slow progress on the boards but progress is

being made.

Ok so next thing I did was mark up with a big

red felt tip pen a general outline of where I

wanted everything to go.

Click on a picture to enlarge:


As you can see I had some help from a passing

Panther tank.

Then I started scraping out the styrene road

route using a screwdriver and sharp knife. I

also put down a tile size layer of styrene to

help build up the scenery.



The tile layer is built up using more tile

where required and is stuck down again with PVA glue.

The cocktail sticks are used to temporarily hold things

in place while the glue sticks.


The next part of the plan is the foundation for

the bocage hedges. As far as I`m concerned bocage

has just as much tree in it as hedge. So I`m using

twigs as trees and sticking them with glue into the

hedge lines. They will help the horsehair bocage stay

in place.



Some of you have probably noticed that my boards

have a permanent look about them. The plan is to make

the terrain 50/50(half fixed/half moveable).

Anyway that’s it so far.

I have been making small bits of terrain for some time and recently

a lot of Western front WW2 type stuff. Unfortunately I have an

Eastern front type terrain board which has been disguised , very

badly as of late to look like Normandy 😦

So without a further thought of what I`m letting myself in for

and inspired by Arkiegamer ,its off to the shed and out with

power tools 🙂

Now I started this project a couple of months back and to be honest

I have been up to other things but in an attempt to get myself moving

its time to post up my progress and get on with it.

Stage one was to build the standard boards which I already use. By

keeping to the same sizes they will fit perfectly in my terrain storage

tower(sounds impressive but wait for the picture).


My terrain boards are 610 x 610 in size, which fit nicely on most tables

and are not to bulky to move around as a permanent set up board is out

of the question.

I basically cut out four battens of strip wood(2cm x 2cm) and sand off any rough


These are then glued down onto a 6mm MDF board using industrial PVA



Once dry a couple of small screws are screwed through the MDF from underneath

the board into the battens to add to rigidity.

Next up I use styrene boards which just happen to be the exact height of

the battens. Cut out the desired shape with a saw(best tool for cutting large

bits of styrene neatly) and glue down again

with industrial PVA, use plenty. Please note by industrial PVA glue I mean the

stuff builders use for sticking just about anything . You can also use wood glue for

sticking down the wood if you choose.



Now we have the basic battle board all ready for whatever you plan to do.

For my project I made four of these basic boards.

Just as a note in case any body is interested, this is what the basic costs

are but a large amount of the stuff I already had in stock. The prices quoted

make at least four boards.

1. 6mm sheets of MDF x 2 £10.
2. 2×2 lengths of strip wood x 2 £12.
3. PVA glue big pot £8.
4. Styrene in packs of 5 £14.
5. Small screw pack £3.

So £47 so far or $80 dollars for you guys over the pond 🙂

Compared to GW boards x 6 at £170 or $289 and I will have lots

of kit left over for more boards.