Freitag, 5. Oktober 2012

Back to Bases

As the workload of 'real life' increases, I'm becoming a very unproductive painter. Ten painting points (1 figure = 1 point, 1 rider or warmachine = 2 points) per month is nowadays the only quota that I can achieve as an average. At the same time, the number of rulesystems I'm interested in has increased - and while I usually could apply my DBx-basing standard to every rulesystem, with SAGA or DUX Britanniarum there are now skirmish systems in my portfolio that require single based figures!

This brings me back to a point where I have been before, as I already had experimented with single based figures years ago - then with metal-singlebases and multibases with inlayed magnets. It had not worked and resulted in some really nasty accidents with miniatures falling down and all that, so I went ahead and have based everything the DBx-way since then. Now I'm willing to give the thought it another try.

The thing I have changed now is that the (quite strong) magnet is not in the multibase, but in the base of the figure itself. And suddenly it works like a charm! So I'm now able to use this unit of Normans both for SAGA...

Crusader Miniatures Normans single based for SAGA

... and for systems requiring larger units like Impetus or Hail Caesar.

The same Crusader Miniatures Normans on Multibases for Hail Caesar or Impetus

The Multibase has sabots that I make myself with a saddlers stamping-tool. The base can be styrodur or any strong material, it is glued to a metal surface in order to give the magnets in the figure-bases something to hold on to.

The Multibase without the figures

A not finished multibase together with the saddlers stamping-tool

The figures blend well into the Multibase

The sabots can only be seen from directly above

Due to the strong magnet in the base, the figures hold on to the Multibase very well and have not yet fallen off - even when turned around:

No miniatures were harmed in the making of this picture -
but don't do this without magnets!!!

They also can be fixed on smaller bases DBx-size - yet since here there is not enough room to make sabots, the visual effect clearly suffers.

Admitted - it would look better with color on the base - but only slightly so...

The same method works for mounted figures. Here I use oval single bases from warbases (with a 5mm magnet in a drilling-hole) amd fitting sabot-bases from warbases as well.

Crusader Miniatures Normans charging as a unit for Hail Ceasar or two units for Impetus
The same figures as they would be used in a SAGA-game
I'm quite happy with the result. The making of the Multibase takes some time, but much less then the painting of another unit for a new gaming systems would require. The same goes for the price: The Multibases and the magnets are not for free, but they are way cheaper then new figures would be.

Now I'm going to give the same treatment to all my figures that I would like to use for several systems, especially my Dark-Age figures for Dux Britanniarum and my Perry Samurai and Koreans (I have not yet found a suitable skirmish system for them, but Samurai skirmish is much to tempting to glue them all onto one large base...).

But I'll certainly draw the line at the year 400 AD - my Ancients collection before that date is all neatly based on DBx-bases and much to extensive to be rebased. Also I don't see the point of skirmish gaming in an era that really relied very much upon large bodies of troops, and since DBx-basing is compatible to all non-skirmish systems anyway, there really is no point changing it.

Best regards and have a nice evening,


  1. That's a wonderful idea! I might re-base my Vikings that way and My Arthurian material when I tackle that someday.

    You should when following other blogs give a link back to your blog so they can follow you.
    Right now if I click on your pic in my blog it just shows me your Avatar and not a link to you blog.


    1. Hi Christopher,

      many thanks for your kind feedback. I'm glad you like the idea. By the way, that is way the Koreans were so long without basing, I first had to develop a flexible concept...

      Many thanks, too, for the hint regaring the profile. I have now changed it - could you please have a look and give me a signal whether the link to my blog is now visible?

      Many thanks and best regards,

    2. Your welcome and yes it is working now. I see you have already attracted a few more new followers.:-)


  2. Beautifully painted and based figures, Tobi. I like to use single based figures for versatility of games too. I normally have my figures (28mm) on either 20mm squares or 3/4" (approx. 20mm) round metal washers. That stamping tool looks very good (& expensive, I bet :)). Best, Dean

    1. Thank you Dean for joining and for the kind comments - I really appreciate them. Yes, I thinks this flexible basing really fits my needs. I'm glad its working out so good. The tool was 25 Euro - so yes, quite a price for a piece of metal...

  3. Hi Sir Tobi

    Nice to see some one else using the same idea as I:) I to drill smal nano magnets in to my bases, and in to the movement tray to, your metode seems a little bitt better, might have to try that and get me a stamping tool.

    What size do you have for the oval bases? I use 20x40mm but it are a litle to unstable playing skirmish, yours look like 25x50?

    Best regards Michael

    1. Hi Michael, I've tried the same technique as you (great minds think alike ;-) but was not so happy with it because the adhesive power of the magnets seems better on steel then on other magnets. Besides, with most of my figures I didn't have a principle which side of the magnet was upside or downide, so I had to build a new multibase for each dedicated unit... Now with this method it's much easier - I can only recommend it! As for the ovals you are right I use 5cm x 2,5 cm. I've also tried the smaller size (to be compatible with DBA) but decided for the bigger ones. Best regards, Tobi