How to get an Anti-Tank Ditch on a Flat Table

Stephen Phenow sent through a picture of his Anti-Tank Ditch. I think it is fiendishly clever in it’s simplicity.

Following a discussion about my Depression Steve P. sent through this photo and asked me to post it.

Steve P said:

When you build terrain you have to remember that the tabletop is your lowest point of the table. Any thing which is deeper then the lowest point must be modeled. So trenches and anti tank ditches are raised surfaces on either side of your lowest point. Its best to cover this with a ground cloth to retain the illusion plus it adds to dioramic appeal.

Here is what Steve P’s Anti-Tank Ditch looks like:

Anti-Tank Ditch
Anti-Tank Ditch

It looks to me like Steve P’s table is covered by a sand coloured cloth. Under the cloth are two parallel lines of polystyrene cut into irregular ridges. These stretch across the table. The cloth is taped down on the table edge to keep it at the level of the table top rather than at the level of the tops of the polystyrene. This is what gives the effect of the Anti-Tank Ditch – a hollow between two rises. So simple and cheap, but very effective. Brilliant.

This feature would be perfect for my Assault on Tobruk – A Crossfire Scenario. The scenario feature an anti-tank ditch the length of the table.

2 thoughts on “How to get an Anti-Tank Ditch on a Flat Table”

  1. Hmmm, quite interesting. I’m assuming this is more useful for tables where you have a simpler layout, e.g. a basic gaming board and supplemental terrain features? I know people sometimes model foam boards – or tiles – with trenches already modeled into it….


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