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3D Board questions (seeking advice)

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3D Board questions (seeking advice)

Postby Nicodemus » Thursday December 13th, 2018 12:54pm

I've been wanting to create a 3D HQ board for a couple of years now and with the upcoming release of the Litchmyre Dungeon miniatures (as well as a full set of Boris' hard-to-get HeroQuest models inspired by Les Edward's box art) I've decided to make this my next priority...

The reason I haven't started yet is that I've been going back and forth in my mind for ages now on what material to make it out of. I've seen a lot of Hirst Arts 3D tile projects - I just don't like the look of them. I'd also like to spend some time on the board so that I can make it as accurate as possible, right down to the same cracks in the same tiles, etc. While this could be achieved with a 3D printed board (and I'd be happy to pay for one) I don't have access to a 3D printer, nor do I have access to someone who can 3D print it for me.

Which brings me to materials I can cut and carve myself. I've got lots of experience with extruded insulation foam, but I want something more durable that's going to hold up against kids or having a metal miniature dropped on it. Making it out of MDF, while more time consuming to carve should be possible, but I'm not very experienced with doing detail work in MDF. Anyone have any thoughts on this? I'm expecting I could setup a jig for my router sled so that I can router out the grid for the board, and then get to work carving each tile by hand with a dremel, chisel, and an X-acto , but how practical is this kind of idea and how difficult will clean-up be? Am I likely to get clean edges and is it going to paint up decently?

I also want to magnetize every tile, but putting a small magnet inside the centre of each tile and then have it hidden (i.e. by covering over the hole with filler, or alternatively drill into the centre of each tile from the bottom of the board until I'm 5mm from the surface and drop the magnet in that way).

Anyway... foam, MDF... or is there an easy 3D print option where I can just contact someone to make it and ship the board to me?
Any suggestions would be most helpful, as I'd like to start 2019 with a plan |_P

~N
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Re: 3D Board questions (seeking advice)

Postby cornixt » Friday December 14th, 2018 10:41am

MDF dust is not good to inhale. And it will take forever to carve! It would be the most durable though. I went half-measures and glued cardboard tiles to MDF - cutting cracks into cardboard is easy in comparison.

There was a 3D printing website that gave a listing of all the people offering printing services in your area. When I looked them up, there were several really close to me - not commercial services, just people making a little extra money on the side with their home printers. You could break down the list by the print quality and materials, and it would give a quote based on the stl file you wanted done. A whole board would cost a ton. I don't remember what site it was though.


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Re: 3D Board questions (seeking advice)

Postby Nicodemus » Sunday December 16th, 2018 5:16pm

I'm fine working with MDF, with adequate dust collection it's not a big deal.

I did a test with a V groove router bit on some manky scraps I had... not too bad for a start. This was just freehand so it's not meant to be perfectly straight ;)
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Re: 3D Board questions (seeking advice)

Postby j_dean80 » Sunday December 16th, 2018 5:44pm

That looks quite nice for a floor, walls would be more difficult I would think.
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Re: 3D Board questions (seeking advice)

Postby Nicodemus » Sunday December 16th, 2018 9:14pm

I don’t particularly like walls that come up from the board, I’m leaning more toward sticking with a thickened edge to demarcate room areas... so not full 3D just the tiles
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Re: 3D Board questions (seeking advice)

Postby knightkrawler » Sunday December 16th, 2018 9:25pm

Nicodemus wrote:I don’t particularly like walls that come up from the board, I’m leaning more toward sticking with a thickened edge to demarcate room areas... so not full 3D just the tiles


I've been working on that concept and I love what I have right now.
Styrofoam on MDF, individual tiles, painted up however I want them.
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