Friday, May 29, 2009

Bloody Hair Rollers The Roman Army Marches Out

The above photos are of my current creation. Three DBA Marian Roman Armies with some options and accessories for a 6 player DBA campaign. I learned how to make these figures following some information I read on rice armies on TMP. The figures are nominally 5mm in scale and I have based them on the 15mm scale DBA bases. I think the overall effect was worth the effort as I made these in about 5 nights of hobby bench work that includes cutting, basing, priming, painting, touch up. I cannot wait to get them into action.
Here is the link to a cool article on the process of cutting up a hair roller to make strips of tiny men in rank. The horse is my own creation and I call it the "Van Pelt" cut.
To make the horse: acquire some plastic grid used for needlepoint craft.

You will cut a horse silhouette from the grid to scale with your army men.

VAN PELT CUT copyright 2009

Each of the black lines above indicate an Xacto slice. There are some subtle cuts you can do on the item to create a mane, a helmet on the rider, legs under saddle.

I have shaded in the horse and rider you are trying to sculpt. Don't cut these out one at a time.
Cut one for practice and then cut strips out - counting the number of lines you need to get each model. Then pick one of the slices and cut a multitude of figures all sequentially at once.

Using Aeleene's tack PVA glue, glue them down to the cardstock base and paint them in place on their final DBA stand.

I am so proud of this design idea. Beats gluing together rice.

Wait till you see my Lima bean hephalumps.
Thanks for reading.
Leave a comment.


  1. Very impressive! :-) Producing decent horses/cavalry for these sort of "alternative-style" armies is a problem and yours is a very good solution.


  2. I have been wanting to try this, but I cant find the correct hair rollers.
    Finding the right hair rollers is key! So what brand/model did you use and where did you find them?


    Back click through this companies site and you will see a variety of the curlers that where used for my projects and possibly the ones from the 80's.

    Olivia Garden 2102 Kelley Ct.
    Pittsburgh, CA 94565
    Phone: 925.431.3636

    Olivia Garden S.A.
    rue de Hermee
    Herstal, Belgium

    I went to three stores before I found them finally at an unclaimed slavage and freight company in Kansas City metro area called Cargo Largo. When at the check out counter the man ahead of me in line turned as he was leaving and said "I don't think your hair is long enought to need those. HAHAHAHAHA" I said "you cannot imagine the geekiness these will be used for."

    I have some Warband Ancient British done and will work on getting photos up. I have a new thread called 5mm Roman Army Marches out that I think I will shift to because we are not using rice and so this thread is probably not read by the hair roller contingent.


  4. Ken,
    Could you post a how-to for your elephant.


  5. Elephant tutorial is on my Carthaginian post.