- by Iain Wilson
A few weeks ago, I picked up a couple of packs of scifi shipping containers from a company called 'Laser Cut Card'. They produce a range of different vehicles and building kits that are laser cut out of stiff cardboard, which are much cheaper and easier to work with than the more common MDF kits, and are surprisingly sturdy when assembled. I built four of the six containers I received as normal shipping containers, but then couldn't resist doing something a little different for the fifth one. And so for this week's modeling spotlight, I'm running through the construction of 'Honest' Pete's Trading Post!
The shipping containers come flat-packed in a set of three, with some pictorial building instructions on the back of the package insert, but assembly is essentially to roll a sheet of pre-scored card into an octagonal tube and then glue other bits onto the outside of it. I assembled mine with superglue, although you could use wood glue if you wanted to allow a little more working time to make sure you have everything lined up.
Obviously this wasn't going to be a particularly large shop, so the idea was to have a servery-style counter and awning rather than have customers go inside. So I began by cutting one of the large sections off the main body piece of the container, and then gluing the ends on to the result sideless tube.
A shop needs somewhere to put their merchandise, so I threw together a set of shelves from thin plasticard, to run along the back wall of the container. An angled bottom on the uprights allowed the shelves to sit flush against the container side.
Next up I cut another couple of strips of plasticard to create a counter, about a third of the height of the space in the container wall, and glued this in place.
For the finishing touches, I cut some 'concrete' stands for the container out of 5mm foamcore. These serve to lift the container up very slightly to allow a little extra head-clearance for the awning, and make the structure look more stable. The exposed foam center was sealed with a generous coat of PVA glue so that it wouldn't dissolve when hit with spray paint.
I added some corner reinforcing to the bottom of the front edge of the awning piece using some scrap card pieces, and built some corner support posts using the small pipe fitting from the Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprue
, some plastic tube and a couple of lengths of plastic cut from the sides of the terrain sprue itself.
Finally, I took a large pipe fitting from the terrain sprue and added a fan cut from a piece of thin plasticard. I trimmed the edges of the pipe fitting away so that it would fit neatly over the circular detail on the roof of the container.
At this point, the trading post was looking like this:
With an MDF
base added, and some paint on:
The sign on the awning was a last-minute addition. I was originally going to have the trading post sign on the front of the counter, but realised that this wouldn't be hugely visible on the gaming table, so built a quick rooftop sign from some more scraps of card. I also added a mesh grill above the counter after painting inside the container, to make the interior of the store less accessible.
The container was sprayed with black and then Army Painter Army Green, before being sponge-weathered with Vallejo Heavy Charcoal and dirt weathering drybrushed into the creases with Vallejo Beasty Brown. The text for the signs was created in Gimp, printed, and glued on prior to weathering so that it would match the rest of the container.
I added grafitti on the back and sides of the container to give it a little character and to make sure that all the interesting bits weren't on the front.
The grafitti was sketched in with a black fineliner pen, and then painted in whatever colours seemed appropriate.
The roof was left plain, with just the weathering to break up the green.
As an extra little detail, I printed up a shipping carton and some bottle labels using Gimp, adapting the fronts I made for my Vending Machine templates a few weeks back (article here
). The shipping carton was cut and folded, and then weathered with a little Army Painter Soft Tone, while the bottle labels were glued to some bottle bombs taken from the Broken Infantry
weapons sprue with their rag wicks cut off.
And with that, 'Honest' Pete's is ready for the table!
You can pick up the Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprue along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge model range from the webstore here
As always, feel free to pop along and share your work, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page
For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the article roundup here