While I have been painting the next bunch of miniatures (which I can hopefully post in next entry). I have tried myself in terrain building. I have build a test model of a section of a Māori pā. My primary source has been the book “Māori Fortifications” by Ian Knight (published by Osprey Publishing). My idea is to build a modular fortification than can be easily stored and transported. I do not plan a highly sophisticated pā like Ruapekapeka or Tauranga Ika with trenches and double palisades. My humble goal at the moment is just a main palisade.
Tutorial for a Modular Palisade
Materials for the base: cork tiles, smoothing compound, sand.
Materials for the fence: round wooden sticks for the main posts, wooden or bamboo skewers, black thread
Tools: drill, small rasps, saw, pencil sharpener, needle, scissors
A. The Base
- Take the cork tile and cut it into stripes of equal length but different width. Stack the stripes and glue them together so that they form a bar that is narrowing towards the top. I used four stripes, the bottom stripe being 30 mm wide and the top stripe being 18 mm wide.
- Drill holes for the main posts.
- Use the compound to fill out the steps of the bar in order to get smooth sides.
- Flock the base with glue and sand and finish it as usual.
B. The palisade
- Prepare the main posts. Use the rasp to carve the stylized heads. Rasp indents into the main posts so that the horizontal skewers for the rails can be glued more easily to the main posts.
- Glue the main posts into the holes that you have drilled into your base. Glue the horizontal skewers to the main posts.
- Saw the skewers in pieces of appropriate size. Remember that you need notably shorter sticks for the loop holes. The other sticks should vary slightly in length to give the palisade an irregular look. Use the pencil sharpener to sharpen the tips of the sticks.
- Glue the sharpened sticks on the horizontal bars but leave a little gap between the vertical sticks. These gaps so that the needle and the thread can pass through later on. You will also need less sticks for the stockade as a nice side effect.
- Wait until the glue has hardened. Then “weave” the black thread with the needle into the palisade.
- Paint the palisade with generously thinned down brown ink but leave out the sharpened tips of the vertical sticks
- When the ink has dried paint the stylized figure heads of the main posts with red ochre. Do not thin down this time to avoid the colour being soaked into the wood and bleeding down the post.
Congratulations! You are finished!