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This section contains a few of my thoughts on various gaming topics, as well as things that won't fit in anywhere else. Feel free to email me with discussion points and reactions.
©1999-2004. All rights reserved.
My Workbench

Specially cleaned up for the shot?

The bare necessities
  • Surface
  • Small item storage
  • Water
  • Paint pot box
  • Tool and brush holder
  • Flock and sand trays
  • Surface
    No matter how hard I try, the bench always ends up in complete carnage. The surface of the bench is splattered with paint and scoured with scalpels, so don't use any furniture that you or a family member are strongly attached to. If you do need to use a surface that you want to keep, then a square of hardboard or similar is a necessity. Newspaper is not so good because a big spill will go right through.

    As well as the surface itself, you need plenty of storage. This desk is particularly good because it has two levels. A box of paint pots, and a tube desk-tidy go on the top, with trays of sand, pebbles and flock lined up underneath along the back. The plastic cabinets at each side are sold by hardware stores for holding screws etc. These make an ideal place to keep all your small valuable bits such as bases, bits of chain and spare figures.

    The water for washing your brush out in should be should be fairly large, so that it doesn't contaminate too quickly. Glass will clean more easily than plastic.

    Paint pot box
    Even if you don't move your paints around, keeping them in a box will help keep them under control. I used to use a Warhammer 2nd Edition box for years until it disintegrated on me, so now I use a boxfile.

    Tool and brush holder
    A tube desk-tidy maks an ideal tool holder, or you could just use a jam-jar or pot.

    Flock and sand trays
    My most commonly used flocks go in clear plastic trays at the back of the desk. These are the old multi-pack boxes from Citadel, they are bigger and made of solid plastic unlike a blister pack. If you keep flock in a little pot then you will have to tip it out to use and then pour it back in again. Not so good.

    Crowding out
    During a big clear up, all the figures will go back to their boxes or shelves, whether they are finished or not. Then, day by day, they will return to this blissfully clear surface. The space available to paint in shrinks until there is barely room to put down the figure I am holding. This is usually the trigger for the next clear up, and the cycle repeats.

    If painting a unit, however, it is useful to have all the figures on the bench at once. This will help you get the colours to match across all the members, and seeing them all lined up is good motivation.

    Clearing the decks
    As well as becoming cluttered with figures, the surface collects a layer of debris, large and small. When I clear it, I remove all the bits I want and put them away, starting with the biggest. As it starts to clear, I use a foam pad from a blister pack to sweep it all into a pile in the middle. Once this pile has been thoroughly picked over to remove all the spare bases, weapons, neat bits of plastic etc, the remaining dust and grot is swept over the edge into the bin.
    Askaris line up for their turn

    2003. All rights reserved.