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DIY Fake Wood (for cheapskates)

SludgeMunkey

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I have problems getting real wood that meets my needs here. I do not have a sandblaster handy, so I cannot "force" the wood I can get to meet my needs.


So, when all else fails, make your own.

Here is what I used:

2 inch Diameter Schedule 80 PVC pipe (any diamter will doo as long is it is the thick walled schedule 80)
a die grinder with a 1/4 inch carbide bit, ball shaped
a torch

Cut your PVC to length. Do any major holes and uneven ends with a saw.

Heat the pipe up till it is soft, then bend it to the shape you want. (This takes practice) It gets HOT! Wear gloves and use tools to move the pipe into position. I used pliers and a foot long section of wooden broom handle.

I used compressed air to cool it quickly, as it takes a long time to "set up" otherwise. Cold Water works too.

Now take the die grinder (or Dremel tool) with the ball shaped carbide bit (You have to use a metal bit, Dremel stones just clog up) and use it to texture the surface. It is also good for sculpting holes.

Once textured, you should use the torch or heat gun to melt off any remaining plastic fuzz left over from grinding.

Here is the end result:
Suitable for aquatic and terrestrial use.
Water proof.
Rot proof.
Paintable.
And it does not float.

3796030774_9b5f82a896.jpg

3795213379_2e6ef3dfaf.jpg

3796055910_2cf2c6199e_b.jpg


These are all unpainted, but you get the picture. Total cost: 10 bucks for a ten foot section of pipe, and a few hours of work.:D
 
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Azhael

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That´s brilliant O_O
Functional, light weight, and it HAS to be fun to make. Reminds me of Warhammer modelling xD
I assume the first couple of pieces one makes look like rubbish....but with a bit of practice it really does look great.
I must try this(when possible.....).

I´d apreciate it if you could post a pocture of a painted piece, just to see the effect.
 

SludgeMunkey

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It is exactly like Warhammer modeling! All those years of my youth wasted making post industrial holocaust models for 40k are finally useful again!


I'll be painting these tomorrow morning...I'll post the pictures then.
 

Kerry1968

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I agree! I had to show my other half these pics I was so impressed!

Johnny, your DIY skills are to be much admired.
 

nora

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Impressive! Your logs look great even without paint. I'm going to make an attempt at this. It looks like fun just trying to make one. And the price is right!
 

xMIDNIGHTx

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Johnny, that is excellent!! I must try that when the opportunity arises. I agree the pieces look great without paint! Thanks for sharing.

Mitch
 

SludgeMunkey

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This is one of those projects that anyone can do at home. It just takes a bit of practice. I will not show you the first attempt at this I did...it came out looking like , well, a wrinkly pipe with holes in it. These recent ones are much better, but I think I can improve on them in the future.

I am planning on doing a tree branch that uses multiple sizes of pipe and assorted fittings in the future or maybe a tree stump.

Just make sure you get the Schedule 80 Pipe or thicker. The standard Schedule 40's walls are too thin to carve up in my opinion.
 

John

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I need a bunker for my boyz please.
 

Critter Mom

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That's genius! I just hope there aren't any toxic fumes going on... ;)

I just can't believe how REAL it looks, and I can't wait to see how it looks painted!:happy:
 

SludgeMunkey

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That's genius! I just hope there aren't any toxic fumes going on... ;)

I just can't believe how REAL it looks, and I can't wait to see how it looks painted!:happy:


This gray PVC is rated for potable water use and is approved for aquaculture use. The only risk of "toxic" fumes is when you heat it up to bend it. The other risk is particulate dust when grinding. The plastic itself is inert and is UV stabilized for outdoor use.
 

bewilderbeast

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It is exactly like Warhammer modeling! All those years of my youth wasted making post industrial holocaust models for 40k are finally useful again!


I'll be painting these tomorrow morning...I'll post the pictures then.


I used to work for games workshop as a model builder/painter... I've noticed a lot of the same techniques being used to fabricate rocks and wood for aquariums as we used to build terrain...
 

SludgeMunkey

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I used to work for games workshop as a model builder/painter... I've noticed a lot of the same techniques being used to fabricate rocks and wood for aquariums as we used to build terrain...


And those techniques are pretty standard to sculpting and modeling! Between Games Workshop stuff and Model Railroading, I got a lot of practice, especially with the rocks and plants bit. The materials differ a bit, but the art is the same.
 

SludgeMunkey

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UPDATE!

Here are some more pieces. These are made from 6 inch pipe, carved and heat-warped. This time the PVC is black rather than gray, but it still works great! I also coated these with a spray on epoxy sealer that has "sand" in it. This adds additional texture to the "wood".
3813988601_b797b4039e_b.jpg


Here is the same pieces with the first couple of coats of paint:
3814801590_c3169cb4fa_b.jpg
 
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Kerry1968

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They are brilliant, I'm ready to be your UK distributor! Bet you could make a tidy business out of this (if you had the time), of course I wouldn't charge a large percentage in commission! ;)
 

bewilderbeast

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do you prime them before you paint, or do you find the textured filler works adequately as such?
If I remember correctly you use acrylic paint?
 

grius

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I have problems getting real wood that meets my needs here. I do not have a sandblaster handy, so I cannot "force" the wood I can get to meet my needs.


So, when all else fails, make your own.

Here is what I used:

2 inch Diameter Schedule 80 PVC pipe (any diamter will doo as long is it is the thick walled schedule 80)
a die grinder with a 1/4 inch carbide bit, ball shaped
a torch

Cut your PVC to length. Do any major holes and uneven ends with a saw.

Heat the pipe up till it is soft, then bend it to the shape you want. (This takes practice) It gets HOT! Wear gloves and use tools to move the pipe into position. I used pliers and a foot long section of wooden broom handle.

I used compressed air to cool it quickly, as it takes a long time to "set up" otherwise. Cold Water works too.

Now take the die grinder (or Dremel tool) with the ball shaped carbide bit (You have to use a metal bit, Dremel stones just clog up) and use it to texture the surface. It is also good for sculpting holes.

Once textured, you should use the torch or heat gun to melt off any remaining plastic fuzz left over from grinding.

Here is the end result:
Suitable for aquatic and terrestrial use.
Water proof.
Rot proof.
Paintable.
And it does not float.


These are all unpainted, but you get the picture. Total cost: 10 bucks for a ten foot section of pipe, and a few hours of work.:D

This is a great tip Sludgemunkey!!! really cool way to form branches. Make hole trees like this this sounds like a good idea.. anyhow awesome done!:cool: Thanks.
 
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SludgeMunkey

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do you prime them before you paint, or do you find the textured filler works adequately as such?
If I remember correctly you use acrylic paint?

Some form of primer is a necessity, or the acrylics peel right off when dry. Water based spray primers work well, or in this case, the epoxy texture paint. When priming terrestrial use only stuff, I have used autobody spray primer, however this needs to cure in direct sunlight for a week before painting.
 
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