I decided to try out a quick method of producing budget river for the Flames of War game (it would suit Warhammer just as well).
Basically, get an old card box (this was a freebie from the local Aldi store). Flatten out the box then take two pens, tape and a piece of stiff card or wood. Use these to make a pair of pens about 3.5 to 4 inches apart. Just tape the pens to the card.
Now you have a way of drawing parallel lines. Draw along a length of the card then cut out along the lines. Easy!
Then cut out some short thin strips of card to go along the edges of your river piece and glue these down with pva glue to make the riverbanks.
Once dry, I used a can of red oxide primer to undercoat the surface and sides of the river. Any dark colour would probably do. This dried in a few minutes.
Then I took some blue paint and painted the river bed (not the banks – I left them red oxide). Once dry, I mixed a little white into the blue to paint the edge of the river banks and blurred it a bit with my finder.
I then took some green paint and mixed some of the blue in and painted a strip down the middle of the river and blurred that a bit as well. You now have three colours across the river to add some depth to the thing.
Once dry (about 10 minutes) I painted on some pva glue to each of the banks, making sure to really work the glue into the recesses of the carboard including the inside of the banks. that was followed by summer static grass. Tip off the excess grass and reclaim it. Javis of Stockport make what looks like identical product to the GW blend and I can’t see the difference.
I also added a little tuft of static grass in the river to make it look like a little island of grass next to the bank.
To finish I painted on some varnish to protect the surface and add a sheen.
Other pieces will have fords, shallow areas with soem “white water” for crossing points. I forgot to make some bends so that is a follow up.
All in all I made 9 pieces and the cost cannot have been more than about £2.00 in materials (spray primer, pva glue, paint, static grass). Time to make 9 pieces (about 9 feet of river) about 4 hours.
Now all I need is a bridge….!