Friday Quick Tip: Basic Basing

Basing is one of the base skills that every modeler needs to learn when they start out, and while it's simple to many, there are still folks out there that really don't have a clue where to start! This one is for them!

What You Will Need
Tub of Sand, Water, Glue, Old Brush, and your Mini

Step One:
To start out you're going to dot the base with Glue. You can see that here I've done two larger dots at the front and back, I've found this normally ends up being just enough glue for the next step.

Step 2:
With this step you want to take your old brush and spread it around to cover the entire top of the base. Don't worry too much about being super careful, just spread it out and you can clean it all up later!

Step 3:
This is your clean up step, clean the rim of the base with your finger, wipe away any glue on the model with a wet brush and generally fix any trouble spots before moving on to the next step!

Step 4:
Pop open that tub of sand and plant your trooper at least knee deep in it! Give your model a minute or so to sit and remove him. Blow away any loose particles and give him a quick shake, this helps later down the road when you go to paint it all as all of the loose stuff will hopefully have been nixed early on, and keep your brush from getting clogged with sand.

Another quick wipe of your finger around the rim and maybe a little additional clean up on the model itself and you should have something similar to this:

Step 5:
This is a step that I highly suggest to everyone. I always base my models prior to spray priming. This is to help lock all of the sand in with the extra coat of paint, and has really helped a lot in the long run.

Step 6:
This step is all up to you! Whatever color you want your base to be, paint it that color! For this model I've gone with a Bestial Brown hit with a quick drybrush of Bleached Bone. For the rim, I've gone with Chaos Black, again, it's up to you to find the best color for your model!

And that's that! From here, the window is wide open for experimentation into the world of scenic basing. Be sure you check out our Snow Basing Tip for a little more advanced methods. And if you're feeling up to it, enter our 'Take Cover!' Dawn of War II painting contest!


  1. Very nice tutorial. I agree 1000% on basing before priming.

  2. Well put. I usually base after painting the main model. I'll have to try basing before.

  3. Basing before really helps lock down your basing material. And it also helps to seal in natural materials that would otherwise suck up the paint.

  4. I base after but use 'ardcoat to lock down the sand.