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Archaic Bridge


Archaic BridgeThis project was inspired by the line drawings in the Necromunda books of high-level, ancient walkways suspended high above the hive floor. It uses the same techniques as used in the walkways and is very easy to make.

Materials

  1. Corrugated cardboard

  2. Bamboo barbeque skewers

  3. Lentils and split-peas

  4. Thick card

Method

Start by making a walkway to form the 'road' part of the bridge. My bridge is 19 inches long.

Next, cut the semi-circular suspension hoops from corrugated cardboard so that the corrugations are vertical at the top point of the hoop and the hoops are of sufficient diameter to reach to within a couple of inches of the walkway ends. Cut two of these.

Cut semi-circles of corrugated carboard to be the hubs of the bridge, again with the corrugations vertical in the centre. My hubs are 4 and a half inches in diameter.

The suspension rods are made from bamboo barbeque skewers. These are excellent for modelling and I use them a lot. They have a nice ribbed texture which responds well to drybrushing.

Push a skewer through the centre of the hoop (slotting through the corrugation) and into the centre of the hub. This first one should just slide through the corrugation holes. Push the next skewer through near the bottom of the hoop to be the lowest suspension bar - this will go through at right angles to the corrugations and be quite tight. Push a third mid-way between the two. Repeat on the other side so that you now have a hoop and hub joined together by five skewers. Be sure to get the hub in the centre. It is quite hard to push the skewers through - you might want to push a nail or similar through first to make a pilot hole.

Repeat this to make the other side of the bridge.

Glue the hoop structures to the walkway. You can strengthen this joint by pushing more bamboo skewers through from underneath the walkway into the ends of the hoops and underside of the hub, like nails, and then snipping them off flush.

Now we strengthen the structure and keep the hoops vertical to the walkway by pushing a skewer right through one of the hoops and into the other side close to the top of the hoop. Repeat with another skewer equally spaced from the top of the hoop but on the other side. Snip off the excess length of skewer. These look like bars joining the hoop on one side to the hoop on the other side.

Suspension bridgeThe ugly corrugated edges of the cardboard on the hoops and hubs are covered with strips of thin cardboard to give a girder-like cross section. The strips on the underside of the hoops and on the hubs have to have slots cut out for the skewers.

Lentils are glued on to give a heavily riveted effect along the edges of the walkway and all over the top of the hoops. I glued split-peas on the hubs and where each skewer enters the hoop to look like really heavy rivets. For floor panels on this model I used thick cardboard with a lentil rivet in each corner to get a chunkier look. I also cut slightly smaller semi-circles of thick card and stuck them on the hubs along with lentil rivets for extra detail.

The bridge is painted in the same way as the walkway. The larger areas, especially the sides of the hubs and suspension hoops, look good if heavily washed with chestnut wash with rusty runs and pools painted on with neat wash.

Dave Capons suspension bridgeDave Capon made a version of this bridge adapted for 40K. Basically Dave has made it wider to carry 40K vehicles, but otherwise the technique is the same.


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