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Something that is often missing with both military buildings and vehicles is a lively look. Well Vehicles and (concrete) Buildings often painted in camouflage colours are of course prime examples for dead objects in real life, but we want to recreate life so something needs to be done about it. This problem can be overcome by the addition of both "dirt" and graffiti & insignia on the model. Another great way is camouflage netting. Most people shy away from this because it appears too complicated and because it might cover up nice pieces of the model. Well in my humble opinion it actually is very easy and you can choose what parts to cover. And once you have started you will at times find that might feel an urge to cover yet more since it looks so good. The two models here (a Snapdragon Studios 28mm bunker and a Zengdefu 1:48th scale German Leopard II A5) are great examples how a model can appear very much alive and enhanced by adding netting.
Basically you just need a material that will give you the appearance of the cloth pieces in the netting. What I found is flocking material for model R-Rs. This is a variant that is essentially small plastic chips. The photo should give you an idea of both looks and size. The top of the scale is inches, the bottom centimetres. I am not 100% sure what it is meant to be used for normally. My guess would be ivy, but it does not really look good at that either. If you can not get this you might look in your kitchen. I have heard that people use tealeaves, but the only time I saw that was on a 1:35th scale model (which is pretty huge) and that looked too big. My best guess would be oregano.
And you need something to apply the material, which is white glue (Elmers glue). That is all!
The simplest application is when you want to depict netting that either has the camouflage strips in a very tight pattern (you find that with netting that is meant to suppress the IR signature) or where the netting is draped over the object in layers or very tight. As is the case with the netting on the Leopard that is usually draped tight. There you just apply the white glue where you want the netting to be in the end and dip it into the flocking material or let it āsnowā over it. Remember that white glue develops a skin fast (especially when working in a warm climate). Once this skin exists the flock will not stick So either work fast or divide the area and do it part by part. When you work part by part it does not hurt to put a little glue over the edge of the section you just did to prevent gaps.
Afterwards let it dry for a some hours and then it is just painting. In this case it was painted a dark green (see to it that it really covers the flock). This was then dry brushed a lighter green. Some parts were then dry brushed dark brown and black to depict the different colours in the net. That is all.
If you want to depict a net that fits neither of the above categories or is hanging over a void you will need a fine mesh. This is either available in aluminium (car repair) or plastic (DIY stores / as on the photo) for applying plaster to holes or bumps in walls or a cars bodywork. I would normally go for the plastic. It is about as easy to apply as the aluminium, it is cheaper and safer since one can easily cut oneself on the aluminium.
Cut that mesh into the size and shape you want, paint it in the dominant colour you want for the net and glue it (crazy glue) to the object you want netted. You can also drape it over poles and ropes like a tent. After that just use the same method as mentioned before.
If there is something cast into your model (like the sandbags or pieces of wood on these photos) and you want those to appear like they were lying on the netā¦ just do not brush white glue over them but right to their edges.
And always remember to paint the model before you start to work on the netting!
|© 2004-2011, Alexander Schölling and Burkhard Schulze|