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By MLINDERT - Dec. 31, 1969Ok, first of all the bad news; my structure isnít finished yet ! I started this monster ca. 10 months ago and still have ideas for furniture, weaponry, shrubbery etc. but I just couldnít make it in time ! (lazy me ;-) ). Still, I made it an entry since I couldn't bring it up to wait another year.
Now the story behind my castle:
November last year I started the hobby by ordering the Fieldstone Wall Mold #70 (I wanted to show off my LOTR miniatures instead of letting them catch dust on a bookshelf) and builded the standard Wizard House:
After that, the Hirst-flue took over and I started dreaming of building a big castle. So I convinced the missus that I needed the following molds to become a really happy person:
Wizard's Tower Mold #50
4" Circular Tower Mold #52
Prison Tower Mold #60
Turret Mold #61
Octagon Tower Mold #63
After I got them and doing 3 days of casting bricks, fumbling about with them and dryfitting I decided that I desperately needed molds for roofs, floors etc. so within a week I bought the missus a big bouqeut of flowers and ordered the following:
Floor Tiles Various Sizes Mold #201
Cobblestone Mold #210
Wooden Plank Mold #220
Clay Tile Roof Mold #230
Gothic Additional Accessories Mold #44
Without a real plan I started building the lower floor of the keephouse, room by room. I used a lot of time by dryfitting blooks, stare in utmost concentration at them, got stuck, and then repeated the whole process by starting all over again.
I think that the defence of the castle is an important factor so there are no windows on ground level to prevent enemies crawling through or shoot a volley of arrows throught them.
After the lower floor was done, I started to make more progress with the other floors. By building the keephouse, I especially wanted the octagonal tower and the circular tower to become part of it. I really liked the idea of an outside stairway on the octagonal tower.
I really love the turretmold so I've tried to incorporate several turrets in the structure. I think they come out really neat.
After the keephouse was done I took a mental vacation for a few weeks and started thinking about the gatehouse and the outer walls. For the walls, i used the design from Dennis Bryson. For the gatehouse I really wanted to incorporate a working drawbridge and I can say Iím really proud with the result :-D.
Problems during construction:
I spent much time on the polysterene base to get a rocklike structure. After basecoating it I left it to dry in the sun and guess what; big holes were eaten from the fact that I used too much thinner in the paint.
What frustrated me the most was the fact that I didnít seal the streambed well enough, so after filling the stream with clear resin, the foam was leaking away underneath my structure. Although there was nothing that couldnít be filled and repaired with a bowl of plaster, you can guess why I call this structure the ďCastle of DespairĒ !
I didnít use custom made blocks, except from the fact that since I didnít own mold #45 (I ordered it at a later stage) and really wanted to use the door from mold #44 I used the arches from mold #70. I smeared them in with plaster to get a smooth surface and after that I chipped it with a knife.
At a later stage I ordered more molds and used blocks from the following:
Gothic Dungeon Builder #45 (wow, arches that pop out ready to build !)
Bell Tower Mold #55
Tomb Mold #56
Although I had great fun building the castle and it also was a good learning experience I don't think I will ever build such a large structure again; it's hard to find a nice spot in my house to exhibit such a thing !
Dental Class IV plaster
Keraplus for the more fragile parts (wooden planks etc.)
Kabob skewers (grating in prison cell, drawbridge)
Metal rings, wooden rod, small chain (drawbridge)
Polystyrene, flock, foam, resin, little rocks, (base and scenery)
foam board (underneath the planks)
Overall I used normal housepaint (chocolate brown) for basecoating, drybushing was done with Bleached Bone.
Cobblestone black for base, drybush with Codex Grey.
Wooden planks werenít basecoated (my Keraplus had a terracotta color from itself) and were stained with the chocolate brown housepaint.
Mixes of plain red and white houspaints for the roofs.
From my wife who builded the small well !
Measurements in CMís/Inches:
90x 53x60/35x21x23 (LxWxH)
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