This time I have a rice paddy to share. It has taken the best part of four and a half days to finish, mainly because there were many things involved that needed to dry before I could go on to the next step.
First of all I cut a piece of MDF in to the size I wanted and glued foam card along the centre and the edges to form the walls for the rice paddy:
Next I used polly filler to fill in the gaps on the foam card (on top and on the sides) as well as slope the insides of the field so that it wasn't square:
After leaving it to dry over night I gave it a quick paint and cut some sections of synthetic turf into strips to see if it would do the job that I wanted:
Having decided I was 'on to a winner' with the synthetic turf I went ahead an marked out 1 cm spacings for the turf and proceeded to painstakingly cut out the turf strips and then trim them to the required size. This took a bit of time - the good part of a whole day (of spare time) to finish:
Once the glue had dried I painted the edges of the turf strips to reduce the amount of black that would show and then squeezed wood glue around each strip. When the glue dried it has a bit of a sheen to it that would help give it a 'water' look.
I applied several layers of the glue, and it took a fair while to dry, thus the main reason this build took so long:
Once it was dry I applied sand to the 'dry ground' parts on top and on the sides to give it an earthy look:
And finally I added some grass flock over parts of the sane to give it a bit more of a country feel to it:
Here is the finished product with my LRRPs on it to give an indication of size. The really good thing about the synthetic turf is that I can place my figures on to of the 'rice' and it wont get damaged:
I am happy with the results, and it will make a useful addition to my 'Nam wargame. Now I just need a village to go around it!
My wargaming buddy suggested I should make scenery to sell, but a) I can't see anyone wanting to buy the things I make, and 2) the time this one took would make it expensive to sell.
But hopefully my photos will give an idea to others of how to make their own rice paddy.
One thing I did learn while researching what rice paddies look like is that they come in many shapes, sizes and level of growing. The field can be mostly water just before planting, small stalks after planting, long stalks towards harvest time, and dry empty fields before the next planting happens.