Painting Board for Miniatures

The pictures below depict one of my more useful creations since I got back into the hobby of painting 1:72 scale miniatures.  It consists of a roughly 10X10″ square piece of 1/2 inch plywood with holes drilled in it.  I insert nails into each hole and then I glue (White PVA) my plastic soldiers onto the nail heads.  Once the soldiers are set onto the nails I then prime dozens of soldiers at one time with my Krylon Plastic Fusion primer spray paint.  I then grab the nail, not the soldier, in order to paint them at my desk.  I do not put a nail into each hole.  I only use about half the space (40-50 nails; about the same as a standard box of 1:72 scale miniatures).  This allows me to create mini assembly lines for painting by moving them from one side to the other as I add the next layer of color.  I currently have three of these boards in service (and all of them are full of primed soldiers screaming at me to paint them).  Once painted, detailed, dipped and zapped with dull coat it only takes a simple cut with the Exacto knife to separate the soldier from the nail.  I then base them onto a U.S. penny.

Instructions: Pencil a 1 inch grid onto the heavy side of a piece of thick plywood.  Any size will do–your preference.   Drill holes at each intersection without going all the way through the board.  You should drill your holes to about a third or half inch deep in order to hold the nails better.  (This is why I had to glue another 1/4 inch board to my 1/2 inch board.)    Use 10, 12 or 16d nails and of course when selecting your drill bit make sure it will drill a hole that is NOT too tight for the nail to drop into and is not so loose that the nail tilts to one side.  If you use this board for priming it will pretty soon take on the color of your primer.  Glue some felt to the bottom if you are concerned about scratching your painting area with the plywood.

About Jack Wagner

Retired Army.
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