MDF Terrain Review: City Walls by XOLK (28mm)

This post is a Terrain Review of the Low City Walls MDF Kit by XOLK.

Disclaimer: XOLK sent this product to Must Contain Minis for Review Purposes.

Who are XOLK?

For those that have not heard of XOLK, they are a North American Company that makes MDF Terrain and accessories for wargames. We have a number of their products Reviewed on this website, which you can find by using our Search Bar. What attracted me to them at first was their prices, and my American friends will see even better prices because XOLK’s prices are in Canadian Dollars.

Now, let’s take a look at the City Walls kit that they sent.

 

MDF Terrain Kit - City Walls \ Fences
This is how the XOLK products ship. They are sheets of cut MDF board that are fairly easy to assemble. The imagery on the package gives you an idea of what to expect once you build up the models.

Once built, these products look pretty good. Below is a picture of the kit all built and placed on the gaming table.

MDF City Fences Review for 28mm Gaming
This is a picture of the completed City Walls out of the XOLK Kit. They are set up on a Cigar Box Battle Mat. Further down in the post, we will give some fun shots for size comparison purposes and eye-candy.   🙂

Overall, I think these walls look very good and I have not even painted them yet. Building them wasn’t too difficult either. XOLK has an excellent resource page on their website on how to build their products. Unfortunately for me, the instructions for these specific walls were not there when I went to build the product. Fortunately, these walls are very easy to build and go together fairly intuitively. XOLK has done an excellent job of labeling the components so you know how they fit together.

Building the MDF Kit

Building MDF City Walls
All of the walls go together fairly intuitively. A1 glues to the back of A2. B1 glues to the back of B2 and so…

Assembling these was as easy as gluing the back of A1 to the back of A2. Then there are some cardboard cutouts that paste on to the front surfaces for extra details. Those cutouts match up just as easily as the wall sections because of how well they are labelled. To finish the model, there is a wall ledge that gets glued to the top of each wall section. Just like all the other pieces, wall topper “A” glues onto the top of wall “A.” Simple.

Building a XOLK MDF Terrain Kit. City Walls.
Right on the top of the package you can see an advert letting you know that the instructions are on the internet. Below that, are the cardboard cutouts that add extra details on the wall. All of them are nicely labelled. “A1” and “A2” line up exactly with which wall the pieces are supposed to be glued.

To paste the walls together, I used a watered down solution of white glue (PVA) and a few drops of water (roughly 3 parts glue to 1 part water). Other people use different mixes, but use whatever you find works best for you. Watering down the glue makes it easier to brush the glue onto the MDF pieces. Below is the build process I took on the walls.

Building MDF Terrain.
Here I glue the backs of “A1” to “A2” using PVA glue. Once the pieces are together, I let them dry a bit and gather the other pieces.
Building XOLK Terrain
Here we have all the pieces of “A” wall ready to go together.
Pasting cardboard pieces to MDF Terrain
Simply add glue to the back of the cardboard side and paste it to the existing MDF wall. There are cardboard pieces for each side of the wall.
Building 28mm terrain
Then glue the cardboard piece to the MDF wall.
Using clothespins as clamps while building MDF Terrain
To make for a better adhesion, I used clothespins to keep the pieces together while the glue dried. This is an optional step, but I find the pieces stay together better (especially along the edges) if you clamp them while they dry. The small item at the top right of the picture is a pick that comes on the MDF sheet. It is meant as a tool to help you take the pieces out of the MDF board. I personally use it to smooth out and remove excess glue that might seep out of the model while the pieces are clamped together.
Using elastics while building 28mm Wargame Terrain.
Finally, I place the top piece onto the model and use elastics to hold the pieces together. Like the clothespins above, the elastics are an optional step that I do because I find that clamping down the model while the glue dries makes for a better end result. Once the elastics come off, this wall section is complete and ready for painting.

Just like that and these walls are done.

The corner pieces go together well too, but if you want to clamp them together while they dry, then you need to do some inventive thinking. Again, this is an optional step that I believe helps to build better MDF terrain pieces. I’ve built many in the past just holding the pieces together until I felt they could hold on their own. The clamping of the pieces just makes for a tighter adhesion (especially on the corners and edges).

Clamping together a corner MDF Fence (wall) for 28mm terrain building
I may have gone a little overboard, but above is a picture of how I clamped all the pieces together for the corner wall sections. In the past, I have just used my hands, but I chose to use elastics and clothespins as clamps for what should be a better end result.

The End Result

In assembling this kit, I made two corner sections, three short straight lengths and two long straight lengths of wall for my gaming table. The walls on their own look great even without paint. I will paint them though, but for now I have to wait for the weather to warm up so I can take them outside and hit them with some shellac and primer. Spray painting outdoors doesn’t work too well in Canada during the winter months.  😉

City Walls for 28mm gaming (WW2, Modern)
Another shot of the fences from a higher angle. The details look pretty nice on them and they will look even nicer once I get some paint on them.

Below, I took pictures of the City Walls placed with other different brands of 28mm terrain housing. Brands included are… XOLK, PlastCraft Games and 4Ground. The reason I selected these brands is simply because that is what I own in my collection.

The City Walls with a 15th Century XOLK Building. 28mm MDF Gaming Terrain.
The City Walls with a 15th Century XOLK Building.
MDF City Walls Terrain Review
A PlastCraft Games Detached House fenced in with XOLK City Walls
MDF City Fence Review
XOLK City Walls with a 28mm 4Ground Detached House

As you can see, the City Walls fully fence in all three houses by the different companies. Aesthetically, I think they look best with other XOLK Buildings and with the 4Ground House.

Eye-Candy

MDF Terrain Review for Bolt Action
A Bolt Action Rifleman tosses a grenade over the city wall.
28mm MDF Terrain Review for Bolt Action
A British Soldier readies a PIAT behind the City Wall. Bolt Action.
MDF Terrain Review - Blood & Plunder
The XOLK Ruined Cottage enclosed in some City Walls with some Blood & Plunder Miniatures. Note: These miniatures are not yet complete. 
MDF Terrain Review
Blood & Plunder Miniatures with the XOLK Products. Note: These miniatures are not yet complete. They are currently on my painting table.

Summary

The MDF City Walls Terrain Kit by XOLK is an excellent kit that is quick to build. As you have seen above, the product goes together easily and looks great on the tabletop. There are some nice details in the pieces, and they should paint up nice once I get around to putting some colour on them. For those wondering, this kit costs $16.99 (Canadian) and is purchasable through XOLK’s Online Store and through select retailers.

I would like to quickly thank XOLK for sending me these walls to review.

For those wondering what I used as a back drop in many of these pictures, that is a Medieval City Cigar Box Battle Mat.

 

Until next time, Happy Gaming Everyone!!!

DriveThruRPG.com

 

Please Share if you Like the Post

2 thoughts on “MDF Terrain Review: City Walls by XOLK (28mm)

  • January 22, 2018 at 3:26 pm
    Permalink

    Those look great! The colour of the MDF really does work well as some sort of sandstone/stucco/adobe or whatever.

    I would absolutely second the recommendation of securing the layers somehow while the glue is drying, especially for the card layers, which have a real tendency to warp. Doesn’t need to be much, clothespins or rubber bands like here, or even just something heavy and flat (old calculus textbooks work well) laid on top while it cures.

    Reply
  • Pingback:Celebrating my Birthday | Must Contain Minis

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *