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Saturday, 1 August 2015


Continuing the work on my British siege artillery, I have been trying to develop some redoubts in which to position two large naval guns and their crews. Rather than just building earthworks I wanted to add some gabions - huge wicker baskets, filled with soil. I have some resin ones, but they are needed for my Russian guns, so I thought I would try and make some.

The biggest challenge was finding the right material to make the wicker basket effect. I tried all sorts of wire and plastic strip. In the end I settled for the wire off an old computer mouse cable, which contained four very thin wires about a meter long each.

The wicker basket is supported by wooden stakes driven into the ground and then held in place with soil. I needed to make four and began the first pair by cutting out two rough squares of 2mm thick card.

 I then marked out where the wooden stakes would go

After this I drilled holes in the markers and inserted small lengths of wood cut from cocktail sticks:
Once this has dried (I used super glue), the fun bit began with weaving the wire around the stakes to create the basket:

Finally fine sifted sand was poured into the basket, which had a layer of PVA glue in the bottom. The sand was soaked with diluted PVA, with a dash of washing up liquid and the whole thing was left to dry. It took about two days to dry thoroughly, after which I painted the whole thing in dark brown:

I was quite pleased with the results. The next stage will be yo mount these on a base and add the guns and crews.