Cyberboard: I feel that I am making progress!

Yesterday I made significant progress with learning the basics of how to use the Cyberboard Design program. In fact, I managed to go from this …

… to this, …

… and then to this.

I am rather pleased with the progress I have made, and I have used what I learned to write three short guides. These are:

They are all available in PDF format and can be downloaded for personal use.

Cyberboard: Making some more progress

Over the past few days when I have not been gardening or listening to Test Match Special on the radio, I have been making more progress with Cyberboard.

Having mastered the basic tools that allowed me to produce a hex gridded map based on an existing map, I have been learning how to produce tiles. These can be used to add more specific details to a map (e.g. symbols that indicate swamp/marsh and palm trees).

The map before the swamp/mash and palm tree tiles had been added …

… and after the swamp/marsh and palm tree tiles had been added.

I intend to write a guide that explains how I produced my tiles, and once I have had it checked over I will be making it available as a downloadable PDF.

Cyberboard: A guide on how to create a simple hexed grid map using Cyberboard

Back in what my wife Sue refers to as ‘eighteen hundred and frozen stiff‘ (i.e. years ago), I used to teach students how to use Microsoft applications such as Word, Excel, Access, and Publisher. The problem was that most of them thought that they knew better than I did … with the usual result that they came a cropper and would then ask for help. When this had been given and the problem had been sorted out, they might even grudgingly acknowledge that I knew what I was talking about.

One of the problems was that there were very few step-by-step guides about how to do even the most basic tasks, and over time I developed a number of these myself. These were very image heavy, working on the principle that if the student followed the instruction properly, what appeared on their screen looked just like the example in the guide.

Cyberboard does not come with any tutorial material, and I soon realised that some sort of beginner’s guide was needed … so I wrote one that is entitled CREATING A SIMPLE HEXED GRID MAP USING CYBERBOARD. It has been checked over by Conrad Kinch, David Crook, and Ross Macfarlane, and thanks to their feedback I have made several improvements.

I have therefore decided to make this guide available to anyone who wants to get to grips with the Cyberboard design program. Be warned, however: the guide does not explain how to do everything as it is intended to a beginner’s guide. As and when I manage to expand my knowledge of how to use the program, I will try to produce other guides for potential users.

CREATING A SIMPLE HEXED GRID MAP USING CYBERBOARD can be downloaded here. If you find it useful, please let me know.

My latest model coastal defence guns are finished

I have finished painting my latest model coastal defence guns … and I think that they look mighty fine!

With a bit of luck they should be in action later in the week … possibly somewhere in the vicinity of Naverona!

My latest model coastal defence guns

I have now completed the assembly of my two latest (and largest) model coastal defence guns.

They are heavy guns, and should be able to match any guns carried by larger warships.

All I have to do now is to paint them … and then I hope that they will see some action!

Building a model coastal defence gun: the finished article

Despite having problems with some of the paint (the pot of paint I had intended to use to paint the gun carriage had dried out and I had to wait until I could get to a local model shop to buy a replacement), the two coastal defence guns are now finished … and I think that they look quite good.

All I have to do now is to set up the battle I have planned, and then they can see action for the first time.

Building a model coastal defence gun: the final assembly

After a couple of attempts to build a circular track for each of my two coastal defence guns to traverse on, I found two suitable wheels in my spares box. (I think that they may have originally been part of a Games Workshop model … but I am not sure.) These proved to be just the right size … and saved me a lot of time and effort as well.

I glued the each of wheels onto a separate octagonal base of Plasticard, and glued a gun atop each of the wheels.

All I have to do now is to paint the guns, and as soon as they are ready they will be appearing on my tabletop as the armament of a Fezian coastal defence fort.

Building a model coastal defence gun: the basic components assembled

After a long but eventually fruitful search for my liquid polystyrene glue, I was able to assemble the basic components of my two coastal defence guns.

The next stage will be to add a pivot and base to each gun, after which they can be painted.

Building a model coastal defence gun: the basic components

I decided to build the two coastal defence guns I need from various bits of polystyrene plastic tubing, girders, and spare parts that I had in my stock of modelling supplies.

The main components are shown below:

All I have to do now is to find my glue … and then I can begin the assembly process.

Building a model coastal defence gun: some inspiration

Having decided that my next wargame will pit at least one warship against a coastal defence fort, I realised that I needed some artillery with which to arm the fort!

Looking at the collection of photographs I have taken over the past few years, I decided that what I wanted had to combine various elements of the guns I had seen at Montjuich on the hill overlooking Barcelona …

… and the Quebec Citadel in Canada.

My models will therefore have the following characteristics:

  • A barrel that is made up from several hoops of increasing size, with the thickest part being nearest the breech-end of the barrel.
  • The mountings will have traversing slides, along which the barrels would recoil.
  • The mountings will also support the barrels between two cheeks or side plates, upon which the elevating mechanisms will be mounted.
  • The mountings and barrels will be painted dark grey or black.