Sunday, 6 July 2014

Istvaan III Table: Battleframe 5000 Tile Construction

Gday guys,

Keepy here with the next instalment of the Istvaan III table project. Last time I discussed some of the inspiration and criteria that lead to going with a modular tile table, and today we look at the construction process of the tiles themselves before any terrain goes down. So lets dive straight in!

 All the tiles come in flat pack and need to be glued together with wood glue (PVA). As I mentioned in the last post all the tiles are magnetic and the magnets need to be glued into their recess with super glue. Once glued together They need to be fixed in place with masking tape for 12hrs to set. I built two tiles and let them set for 24hrs and I have to say I am very impressed. The panels are all laser cut and fit very snug together, they can only be put together one way so it is a bit hard to mess up assembly.

Two down!

Two tiles down and the daunting task of assembling a massive amount of tiles becomes all too real

The real challenge is double checking you have the correct polarity on your magnets so that they are all compatible with each other. This turned out to be pretty easy - if you are doing the left side, make sure the stack of magnets attract to the left. If doing the right, they have to attract to the right. Simples! Just in case you don't understand, here is a video:

So to make things a bit easier I did everything in a production line style of construction. I started with gluing the backing strip that supports the magnets onto the tiles then glued in magnets. I did an entire type of tile like this then did the rest of the assembly.

150mm tiles getting backing strips and magnets

All the tiles are clearly marked for magnet placement

Wadey "helping out"

A heap of 150mm x 90mm sides all done, ready to build into full tiles

The production line of magnetising sides continues
300mm x 90mm sides ready for backing strips and magnets

All onto the last two types of tile, the 300mm x 90mm ramps and the 150mm x 16mm tiles

The production line continues

Backing strips done for the 150mm x 16mm tiles

So now all the backing strips and magnets had been completed, we moved on to assembling tiles as wholes. All this required was to grab four of the assembled sides and a top, and glue them together with wood glue. As always, Back 2 Base-ix has a tutorial for this too:

So onwards we forged, building tile after tile and fixing them in place with masking tape. I ran an additional bead of glue on the inside of the tiles to give them some extra strength.

Extra beads of glue for that extra strenuous gaming session

The building of 300mm x 90mm tiles begins

Looks like not much left to do, I assure you that was not the case

Keeping the late night build going with the old faithful full of tea

150mm x 90mm tiles nearly all done

Why did I buy so many of these?

Ramps all glued and taped up
Having a play with a Pegasus Hobbies bridge and the 90mm to 16mm ramp tiles

More bridge play and 150mm x 16mm tiles complete

Well it took two full days to assemble a pile of these tiles. If you just got a board full of 300mm tiles it would have taken half as long, but because I wanted so much flexibility and height change I had to quadruple the amount of tiles. You take out one 300mm x 300mm, and it needs to be replaced by four 150mm x 150mm tiles.

After building all the tiles, I discovered that the sides for the ramp sections had not been sent. A quick email to Aaron from Back 2 Base-ix and it was sorted that afternoon. I have to say that the customer service was excellent. If there was an issue with any of the product I bought, I would get a response back in 24hrs.

So was it all worth the hassle and effort? Most certainly! In the next post you get to see the bare tiles assembled in all their glory, and hopefully all my ramblings on three dimensional boards and modular flexibility become a bit clearer.

Next post coming soon!



Istvaan III Table: Concept and Design
Istvaan III Table: Battleframe 5000 Tile Construction
Istvaan III Table: Battleframe 5000 Tile Construction Complete!
Istvaan III Table: Road Sections
Istvaan III Table: Bell Tower
Istvaan III Table: Proxy Fit 1
Istvaan III Table: Governor's Residence
Istvaan III Table: Proxy Fit 2
Istvaan III Table: Habitation Block + Back2Base-ix Promo!
Istvaan III Table: Crater Tiles
Istvaan III Table: Building and RampTiles
Istvaan III Table: Battle Damaged Roads
Istvaan III Table: Table Update
Istvaan III Table: Comms Tower


  1. Epic mate, look forward to seeing what come next

    1. Thanks Sheep, have been really looking forward to getting this build off the ground. So much more to come!

  2. I picked up their paint rack in mdf. Went together a treat.

    Interested to set what your top layer
    looks like.

    1. Good to hear from you again mate. I too have one the MDF paint racks, and the quality of the rack is what sold me on the board tiles. The top layer is taking a while to do but the end result is worth the effort - I will cover that in the next couple of posts.

  3. I'd been looking at their stuff for a second table, I'm eagerly looking forward to seeing what you do with it mate.

    1. Gday Adam, sorry I could not make it down to Brisbane for your tournament, it sounded like it was a top notch event!

      I can honestly say that it does exactly what I intended it to do for a city table. Because it is already made of a block like system I don't have to add any panels to create blocks - the tiles already look like concrete slabs. If you had say an open field board then the tiles sort of work against you. Hopefully the next post will give you more of an idea on weather or not the system is for you.

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