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Made in us
Blood Angel Terminator with Lightning Claws





New Jersey

I was at Michaels with the wife today and I always walk out of there with some little gem that I can use for 40K. Well today I hit the motherload of awesomeness. I present: Creatology Project bricks.

http://www.amazon.com/FloraCraft-Styrofoam-Kits-Make-Fun/dp/B002HMI6W8/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1358713841&sr=8-1-fkmr0&keywords=creatology+project+bricks

They also come in white and red colors, but its really not an issue as I will be painting them. These are a steal and I cant wait to start using them to build my Mortikah VII Monastery Fortress for my Guardians of the Covenant. Anyway just wanted to share this with you all. I will be working with these probably through the week and my work will be on my blog link -

http://www.dakkadakka.com/dakkaforum/posts/list/448561.page


Enjoy !


   
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Made in gb
Blood Angel Terminator with Lightning Claws





terra

They look like they could be of real use and are fantastic for the price.


 
   
Made in us
Blood Angel Terminator with Lightning Claws





New Jersey

When I saw them my wife said my reaction was like a little kid in a toy store (kinda true) and as you said THE PRICE... $15 for 285 bricks... Of course my mind is wondering HOW BIG of a fortress can I build? I am probably going to buy a few more packages. HOWEVER I am sure, being styrofoam, that I will have to seal the final piece with watered down PVA so I can spray paint it grey without the blocks melting. The current tan ones look like the kind of blocks mediterranean castles were built out of and would be great in a middle eastern or dessert themed table.

OH YEAH, Michaels also sells woodland scenics products under the lable SceneArama and the prices are lower than at the hobby store. On the same stand there are Scenic displays (for kids school projects) and some would be the right size for a custom army tray.

As much as I hate Michaels for putting Pearl (a real art store) out of business, and the fact that Michaels primarily caters to women making fake floral arrangements and costume jewelry, everytime I go in there i find something new and awesome.

   
Made in nz
Longtime Dakkanaut





New Zealand

Looks a useful product, or at the very least a massive time saver over handcutting individual bricks/blocks. The only obvious downside is that it's fragile styrofoam, but even that's easy to minimise with some decent planning, e.g. building around sturdy cardboard frames which will be invisible in the final building.

You've already thought of the other problem - surface protection, both for painting and then storage, and several coats of a good non-dissolving sealer should mostly fix that.
   
Made in au
[DCM]
They don't think it be like it is, but it do.





Some place far away... Yes that'll do.

Hmm yep. Gonna need to get my hands on these. Hive city here i come.

   
Made in us
Steady Space Marine Vet Sergeant




Believeland, OH

Why don't you guys just raid the dumpster for interesting styrofoam? It's easy to make a cutter and the dumpster at best buy or walmart usually has some great and interesting pieces.

"I don't have principles, and I consider any comment otherwise to be both threatening and insulting" - Dogma

"No, sorry, synonymous does not mean same".-Dogma

"If I say "I will hug you" I am threatening you" -Dogma 
   
Made in us
Ancient Space Wolves Venerable Dreadnought





Cool product. By the dimensions, if you make a wall 8" high, you could make it 90" across with the 300 bricks.

That said, they're pretty easy to make yourself if you have a wire cutter. They're just polystyrene blocks. Rig your cutter up a certain distance from a guide nice and square, slide the polystyrene sheet through it. That way you aren't limited to what size comes in the box, you can cut larger pieces for lower sections of walls and smaller pieces for upper sections of walls, battlements, houses or whatever. You can also cut wedge shaped ones to make up the some more interesting structures.

Then you can also texture them as you desire, cut gouges and cover with plaster filler for a rough hewn look, or cover with fine sand, or maybe even give it a spray with some thing that slightly melts the foam (very light spray of course) to wear away the surface of the foam.

That said, it's still a good product, if you're happy with the size and finish they offer it'd be a lot easier (and perhaps even cheaper unless you intend to make thousands) than trying to make your own.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2013/01/21 06:30:35


 
   
Made in us
Stormin' Stompa





Binghamton, NY

AllSeeingSkink wrote:
That said, they're pretty easy to make yourself if you have a wire cutter. They're just polystyrene blocks.
Yes and no. Cutting blocks is easy enough, but replicating the texture may not be. The actual product has a pitted surface, as if the outer layer of foam cells collapsed in on themselves - they're "crunchy" Styrofoam, not the more "squishy" EPS that is usually used as packaging material or the HDPS extruded sheets of insulation foam. Personally, though, I'd be trying my damnedest to avoid that surface. Even for what they (the beige ones, at least) most closely resemble - heavily weathered sandstone blocks - the texture feels artificial and out of scale. Honestly, I wouldn't bother at even half the price (which is perfectly possible to achieve - Michaels pretty much always has at least a 40% off a single item coupon floating around). The simplicity of Lego-style brick stacking has its appeal, for the casual terrain builder, but I feel like a lot of folks may be disappointed when they see these in person. Durability will likely also be an issue - they're designed to be able to be formed into points or curves by crushing. By children.

Not trying to be contrary, by any means, I just feel like folks should see a tempering review (yes, by someone who has handled the actual product) before they get too excited. By all means, check them out, preferably in person. I followed the link and, even zoomed in, they look better online they they do, at least to me, in person.

While I'm at it - the scenic displays are way too flimsy to serve as army trays - the plastic is barely thicker than your average blister pack and spans far larger stretches without support. Even as a static display stand, with the support of a table underneath all edges, bearing only plastic models, I'd wager on it cracking and splaying after a short time. At the very least, the center would bow and models would shift if you walked nearby with a heavy gait. It's nearly impossible to keep them intact on the shelves, when they're supported and nested inside each other. EDIT: Double-checked, and it's only the smaller size that's paper-thin. The larger one is still liable to bow if you place a lot of weight in the center, but I imagine it would hold up reasonably well. If you want army trays or display bases, head over to the unfinished wood section. It's mostly soft pine, so some of the pieces have pitted edges from patches of coarse grain, but if you dig around a bit, you can find pieces that clean up nicely for no more than the plastic, but are infinitely stronger. I agree about the rebranded Woodland Scenics stuff, though - if you're looking for small grass mats or enough clump foliage for a few bushes/trees, it's more convenient than ordering online and cheaper than most other hobby stores, when coupons are involved. The selection is limited, since the items are targeted at small, school project-scale dioramas, but it's something.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2013/01/23 05:36:10


The Dreadnote wrote:But the Emperor already has a shrine, in the form of your local Games Workshop. You honour him by sacrificing your money to the plastic effigies of his warriors. In time, your devotion will be rewarded with the gift of having even more effigies to worship.
 
   
Made in us
Ancient Space Wolves Venerable Dreadnought





I don't quite know what you mean by "crunchy" foam. It's not just XPS that's had the surface melted to make it crunchy?

But yeah, you can do lots of things to texture the surface and get lots of different grades of polystyrene. On of my thoughts was simply to spray it with something that melts polystyrene, but only enough to melt the surface, like a light coat of spray paint from a can. You can get a pretty consistent texture like that, whether or not you like the texture is another matter, you can instead coat the blocks.

There's certainly things you can do with blocks easier than solid pieces, though I think for a lot of things you're probably better off building it from solid material and if you want a brick work texture, carving it in. How you carve it in depends on what you build it from and what you're using for a surface texture.

This message was edited 2 times. Last update was at 2013/01/21 09:03:16


 
   
Made in us
Stormin' Stompa





Binghamton, NY

The actual Styrofoam you can find at Michaels - the branded stuff - is far more rigid than the EPS from packaging, but lacks the ability to spring back (the structures seem more or less inverted - it's more like a lattice around empty bubbles than springy beads packed together). There's absolutely no give until it dents or crumbles, permanently. "Crunchy" was just the first word that came to mind. These bricks weren't quite as brittle as the hard foam in the floral section (slightly shiny white stuff), but they're designed to squish, allowing shape adjustment without the use of cutting tools (intended for children, after all).

Even if I did like the look of the surface, I'd likely still stick to solid/sheet material and texture the surface as I saw fit, but that's just how I prefer to work (also the more flexible method, in my opinion). Taste aside, I think something like this - something as simple and intuitive as stacking blocks - would be good for younger hobbyists and terrain novices that want to start basic, as well as for the odd piece where the texture is actually suitable, like a bullet-scarred concrete block, porous volcanic rock, etc.

The Dreadnote wrote:But the Emperor already has a shrine, in the form of your local Games Workshop. You honour him by sacrificing your money to the plastic effigies of his warriors. In time, your devotion will be rewarded with the gift of having even more effigies to worship.
 
   
Made in us
Blood Angel Terminator with Lightning Claws





New Jersey

I have done the pink insulation foam thing and while I like that material I am always searching for other products to use. This saves a hell of a lot of time and mess (cutting insulation foam can get messy). Not to mention the tedium of hand cutting 200+ scale bricks, or even puffin the effect onto a flat sheet.
As far as the texture goes, a simple PVA coat will correct most of the issues.

Like I said, once I have tried my hand with them I will post my results.

   
 
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