Rice paddies tend to be built on small areas of slightly sloping land (mountain valleys etc), so they are quite often terraced, with the flow of water from a higher paddy field slowly trickling into a series of lower fields.
The rice paddy included in the samurai farmyard set is 12cm x 12cm, but you can combine two or more fields if you have the space on your print bed, and still keep the surrounding earth banks watertight - in case you want to add clear resin or water effects.
Here is our "How To" guide....
1. You will need a 3D modelling program. These are available freely, and I recommend 3D Builder, that can be downloaded for free from Microsoft and really does work (yes, really!).
2. In file manager software, copy the rice paddy STL file on your system under a new name. Use that one to work on.
▲ 3. Open the copy to work on, in 3D Builder.
4. Select the rice paddy, and push Ctrl+C to copy it, and then Ctrl+V to paste it alongside.
▲ 5. You should now have two rice paddies, as shown above. Select the left rice paddy, and click the MOVE button at the bottom (circled in red), and then slide the right arrow to move the rice paddy so that the earth banks overlap.
▲ 6. Your rice paddies should now overlap, like in the image above. One thing you might want to do at this stage is make one rice paddy a few millimetres taller, so it gives the effect of a slightly sloping terrace.
To adjust the height, simply select the left rice paddy and click on the SCALE button at the bottom (circled in red), then stretch it up using the two small vertical arrows. 2 or 3 millimetres extra should be enough to give the right effect.
▲ 7. At this stage you have two rice paddies or different heights, but you might want to mirror or rotate one of them to make the stones around the edge look more natural.
To rotate one field, select it and click on the ROTATE button at the bottom (circled in red). Then grab the horizontal arrow and spin it around 180 degrees. It should snap to 180 degrees when you are close enough.
▲ 8. We're almost done! Now you just need to select both fields by pushing Ctrl+A and then select MERGE from the EDIT menu at the top of the screen (circled in red). The software will then join the fields together and remove any unnecessary internal walls. It might take a minute to do this.
▲ 9. Remember to SAVE your new file using the button at the top right of the screen (circled in red). You can now open the STL file in your regular slicer, and get printing!!
Don't be too daunted by this process! It should only take a couple of minutes, and gives you lots of options for customising your rice paddies. Have fun!!
Our new samurai farmyard set has been fully printed, and the PDF instructions finished, so they're going on early release from today. The official release will be just as soon as I've painted them up and taken some atmospheric photos.
But first, some printed photos for you......
▲ The complete farmyard set contents, minus some extra earth rows for the field. You've got a big thatched rice store (centre rear), bamboo fencing (right), a wooden water well (rear left), rice paddy (left front), a wooden hand cart (left), and various boxes, barrels, tubs and bundles.
Also included are some basic farm animals - although please note these are not our own models, and are therefore not purchased files. The animals are available on Thingiverse, and are included in this set for your convenience.
▲ Many, many weeks of work went into getting this rice store looking just right! The thatch was the hardest thing to model, but the roof prints neatly in two halves, with no supports. The wooden body of the building is printed in 4 quarters (with supports required - sorry!), to use the print lines of the filament as additional woodgrain pattern. That meant the whole building could be printed at a faster 0.2mm layer resolution, and still look good.
▲ The thatch is modelled after authentic rice barns from historical centres in Japan, and features elevated wooden beams on top to hold down the thatch.
▲ The water well was printed at 0.2mm layers for the roof, and 0.1mm layers for the rest. The stone base is slightly textured, but has been worn fairly smooth by time and hard usage. A small bucket is included, and can be connected to the pulley with a simple piece of string.
▲ A popular part of the set will no doubt be this rice paddy, with the rows of rice being either bare earth, ready for planting, or rice stalk stubble. I'll be posting another blog article in a few days about how you can choose to model your rice paddy; dry or wet, young or old etc.
▲ A close-up of the two rice paddy versions. Small stones and rocks have been modelled around the outside of the field in places, but inside the earth banks the sides are clear of debris. These were all printed at 0.2mm layers.
The version on the right could also be used as a regular ploughed field, by the way.
▲ Here's a closer look at the wooden cart and some of the small accessories. The goal with these was to provide some 'life' to your farmyards, to make them much more realistic. So you would typically find farming tools (the plough and the hoe) leaning against fences and buildings, and an assortment of boxes, bundles and tubs lying around the farm. A stack of sake barrels are also included, carefully roped together for transport on the cart.
The carts were printed at 0.2mm layers, while everything else was done at 0.1mm layers since it was so small. It should look equally detailed at 0.2mm layers, however! Only the plough required supports - everything else doesn't need them.
▲ Lastly, a bamboo fence for penning in livestock or simply holding back weeds is also included in the set; with and without bases. These were printed at 0.2mm layers without supports. The few small built-in support pegs at each end can be easily snipped off after printing.
▲ Obviously a fence without corners will only be of limited use, so corner sections are also included. I plan to glue one corner to each straight section without base, giving it stability and also modularity.
These will be hitting the paint desk from today!
Phew! There was a LOT to fit in this farmyard set, so I'm afraid it's taken a while to get everything finished up, but all the models are now complete, and printing up as we speak!
In the last PART 1 blog article, you got to see the large rice barn and the bamboo fences in the set, but we have SO MUCH MORE for you today.....
▲ First up is this water well, with wooden sides and a wooden roof. The bucket and pulley, like the rest of the wood beams, are fully textured with woodgrain.
▲ Many people have been asking when rice paddies would be appearing..... so here you are! The rows of rice are actually printed separately from the surrounding ring of earth banks, so you can stretch and resize the fields and still fit in as many neat rows as you like.
▲ The set also includes these versions of the rows, usually seen just before planting season begins. The whole model will be watertight, so you can also pour in a few millimetres of clear resin or similar water effects, and make it look totally realistic.
Alternatively, you could use this version as any type of generic ploughed field. Typical vegetables grown in feudal Japan would be various types of radish, cabbages, carrots, beans etc.
▲ No farm would be complete without a cart to carry all the produce to market. This is a simple handcart powered by a single farmer, as draught animals were actually quite rare.
▲ To go with the cart we also have a variety of items to stick on top. This is a carefully roped stack of sake barrels, printed in two halves.
▲ These shallow wooden boxes were used to carry all sorts of things around between farms and markets; vegetables, ceramics and fish. The set includes a single box (shown on the left), a stack of 4 boxes, and a separate wooden lid.
▲ These straw wrapped bundles were carefully roped tight, and fit perfectly on the back of the cart. A single bundle is also included so you can make your own dangerously overbalanced stacks!
▲ This hand plough is designed to be pulled through the fields by one animal; typically a water buffalo (also included in the set). The six spikes at the bottom were dragged through the earth by the buffalo, which was tied with rope to the two prongs at the front. The farmer simply guided it through the fields with his hands on the handlebar.
▲ A large shallow wooden tub is also included in the set, used for a variety of purposes - gathering rainwater for animals, washing clothes and vegetables etc.
▲ Here is the inspiration for the water well (although the print version has a more 'Japanese' style bucket). I'd better start practising my weathering techniques to match that level of grime!
▲ And finally, this is one of the small handcarts. The big wheels are placed almost in the middle, and can be balanced with the front end up or down. Clever!
Have you been wondering what to do with your samurai bridges, now they've been on sale a few weeks? Don't worry... we have you covered!
Today we're releasing a set of stone canal-side blocks, perfectly suited for all the Japanese bridges you could ever want!
▲ Fancy some cinematic fights across blood-strewn canals? Then this is the set for you!
Here are the ninja assassins of a rival clan quickly dashing across the canal boats to assault the samurai defenders!
▲ In addition to the thinner canal sides and step sections, the set also contains 12cm x 12cm central blocks, which can be used as great base sections for elevating your castle walls. Here we see some castle guards crossing the large wooden bridge to the castle gates, while a kimono-clad lady watches from above.
▲ The corner sections for the canal sides are approximately 40mm x 40mm, and can also be used in this way to create small islands in the middle of the canals - ideally sized to match the smaller stone and wooden bridges from the Bridges Set.
▲ The canal set also pulls double duty as low hills, with the waterside boat docks making great gentle steps up to buildings or ornamental gardens.
▲ But really, who wants to miss the chance of leaping across these awesome punt boats into a fight?!
Two versions are included in the set - with and without low bench seats.
▲ I chose to magnetise all these sections (5mm x 1mm magnets from Ebay), so pulling them apart to try different layouts is a total piece of cake!
▲ Here is a pic of all the set contents, separated for your reference.
▲ The set also two large JPG images of water, which tile seamlessly and look great printed at A3 size.
The Samurai Canal Set is available today!!
Epic Quest Master is a Virginia-based 3D printing store, and they are now selling print versions of our Necrontyr terrain on their online store!