Monday, May 13, 2013

How to make a Warhammer Fantasy/Mordheim House

This is a tutorial that I made some years ago right around the time when my brother and I decided to give a try to Mordheim.
Materials required:- a Pencil
- a metal Rule
- a 45° triangle and a 30° and 60° triangle
- some paper to do some draft
- a sheet of Paper Foamboard
- a Balsa Wood strip of 6x6 mm
- a Balsa Wood strip of 3x3 mm
- a  1.5 mm thickness Balsa Wood sheet
- some Cardboard from a cereal box
- some thicker Cardboard or Plywood for the base
- a net that in my case came wrapping some garlic heads.
- General use White Glue
- some plaster in powder
- Scissors
- Modelling knife or hobby knife
- Pliers
- a Paperclip or some wire
- some Putty
- Paints and brush
- Sand and grass to decorate the base

Step 1: Basic design of the house

In this step we decide the size and shape of the house. It is useful to start by making some drafts of the kind of house you would like.

Try to make the design as simple as possible so it would be easier to build, with experience is possible to made more complicated houses.

Once you have decided the shape, is time to decide the size, you could make a quick house-dummy to check the size against some miniatures with some paper and scotch tape. I decided to make a two-storey house. The height of each storey is 5 cm and between the second floor and the tip of the roof there are 3.8 cm. The ground floor is a rectangle of 9 by 6.4 cm in the inside a cm more or so in the outside, all depends in the thickness of the Paper Foamboard. The top floor is a rectangle in the inside of 9 by 9 cm.

You could obtain the design of my house here.

Step 2: Transferring the design to the Paper foamboard

Now it's time to draw the design of our house in the Paper Foamboard.
If you're using my design you have to draw the drawing of the PDF twice, but you will need only two rectangles that have writing inside "recortar y guardar" (Cut out and set aside). If you do the two drawings together it will be easier to build the house.

With a hobby knife and a metal rule we cut the outside silhouette of the drawing made in the Paper foamboard.

In the design there are some dashed lines and some solid lines with some crosswise little lines that mark zones were the Paper foam board shouldn't be cut from side to side. The solid lines mark lines that you must cut from side to side. With these in mind we finish to make the cuts in the drawing, and we obtain something like the paper foamboard piece of the next pictures:

Step 3: Cutting pieces from the 6 by 6 mm balsa wood strip

We mark with a pencil 8 lines in the balsa wood strip every 5.1 cm a little more than the height of each floor. Next we cut the balsa wood strip following the lines with a modelling knife. When we have the balsa wood pieces we could use the knife to make some imperfections as if the weather have damaged the wood. It is possible that you would need to sand down the pieces.

Step 4: Assembling the walls

Once we have the Paper foamboard piece and the 8 balsa wood pieces we are going to glue all together with White Glue. In this step we also need two of the pieces that were mark as "recortar y guardar" (Cut out and set aside), this pieces will help to make the walls parallel between them and to make the house a little sturdy.

The Balsa wood pieces go in the corners of the walls, and the "recortar y guardar" pieces cover the size holes between the first and second floor walls.

Step 5: Making the roof

We are going to use cardboard from a cereal box to make the roof and the tiles. We start by drawing a big rectangle in the cardboard, a little bigger than the minimum area for the roof (11.2 by 14.4 cm). We draw a middle line in the rectangle making two rectangles of 11.2 by 7.2 cm. We cut the outer and bigger rectangle with a pair of scissors. With a used pen we "draw" the middle line a few times, making easier to bend the cardboard.

After we have cut it and bent it we glue it to the house using white glue and using some rubber bands to hold the roof to the house will we do other things like the roof tiles (Yes the house in the next image is not the same as before is a 3-storey one)

To give some detail to the house you could make a hole in the cardboard roof and glue a piece of 3x3 mm balsa wood strip simulating a roof beam.

While the roof is gluing to the rest of the house we are going to make some cardboard tiles. We star by cutting cardboard strips of a similar size but not necessarily the same. Later we cut those cardboard strips making cardboard rectangles of approximately the same size. If you want you could make all the tiles the exact same size but that will give the roof a too perfect look.
Once we have a few cardboard tiles and the roof is completely glued to the paper foamboard piece, we glue them to the cardboard roof from bottom to top, making different rows and overlapping them as shown in the next 2 pictures.

As you can see in the 2 pictures above, we haven't rich the tip of the roof with the tiles. We do the same thing in the other side of the roof. Then we cut a cardboard strip that we bent at the middle and make some tile like cuts in it. This piece is going on the tip of the roof and would be the last row of tiles.

We could leave it like that but I've add a little cardboard strip bent in the middle on the tip of the roof.

Step 6: Decorating with the 1.5 mm thickness balsa wood sheet

With this step we are trying to give the house and old look, like if it was necessary to have some wood reinforcements supporting the upper floors along the walls. I've made some 3 mm width strips from the balsa wood sheet and cut them to make the vertical, horizontal and other wood pieces with and angle that you could see in the next pictures. To glue the balsa wood to the house we use White Glue.

Step 7: Making the door

To make the door we need the 3x3 mm balsa wood strip, the balsa wood sheet and a paperclip or some wire. We cut some strips from the balsa wood sheet of more or less the same width (around 3 mm also). We cut them so they have a height of 3.5 cm. When we put them together their combined width is around 2 cm. We cut two pieces of 3.7 cm and one of 2.8cm from the balsa wood strip that are going to be the frame of the door. Later we glue all the pieces in one of the walls of the house.
With the paperclip and some pliers we made the door knob and we glue it to the door.

Step 8: Making the windows

We are going to make six windows. We start by cutting 6 cardboard rectangles of 1 by 2 cm. In the center of these rectangles we draw and cut out the form that we want to give to the glass part of the window, in my case a rectangle with half a circle in top of it. Then we made a frame with 3x3 mm balsa wood strip, cutting 12 pieces of 2 cm, 6 pieces of 1.6 cm for the top of the frame and 6 pieces of 2.2 cm for the bottom of the frame. Later we cut a piece of the net and we glue it to the cardboard rectangle using cyanocrylate, starting by gluing the net to one side, waiting until the glue dries, pulling the net and gluing the other side, thus making the holes of the net bigger.

When all that is done we glue all the pieces to the rest of the house.

Step 9: A little extra detail

If you want to you could use some putty to made in a corner something similar to some bricks as if the paint and what ever cover the bricks have fold.

Step 10: Giving some texture to the walls

To give texture to the walls I use some plaster in powder, which allows me to control the quantity of water that I used in the mix, making it rather liquid so I could apply it to the walls using my fingers.

That's about all the steps you have to follow to make a warhammer/mordheim house

If you have any doubts or comments go ahead and post them.


  1. Really nice & easy to do, thanks a lot :) greetings from France

    1. Merci beaucoup, vous êtes très gentil.


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