I'd been wanting to do a rope bridge for my Pulp games for awhile, but had been waiting on genius to strike. I knew the base material I would use, but not how I would make it more than a one-shot, stand-alone piece. I wanted something that could be used to span any number of chasms in games -- not attached or sized to just one set of cliffs, or whatever. I finally hit on a modular design which would allow me to adjust the height to fit whatever chasm I was planning to span. The gap would remain the same, but how high up the rope bridge was above the tabletop could be adjusted.
The first leap of genius (I'm being generous to myself, here...!) was my decision to make the rope bridge butt up against whatever the gap would be it was spanning. Originally, I'd been thinking of something that would sit on top of cliffs, hills, or whatever. I couldn't figure out how to make it sit evenly on any type of surface. But by making it free-standing, all I had to do was shove whatever cliffs I'd be using on the tabletop up against it, sandwiching it in, so to speak. The obvious first choices would be the cliff pieces I made for my French & Indian War games from pine bark.
|The top and bottom of each segment of the pillar holding the bridge ends would be made from one of these birch wood rectangles -- carved into irregular shapes, of course|
|The craft foam which would provide the "layers" or striation of the rocky pillar each end of the bridge would rest upon|
|Although it is hard to see, I would sit one layer on top of the craft foam and draw the outline of the next, slightly larger layer in pencil|
|This photo shows how the last board was removed from each end of the bridge, and the wire gap turned sideways. The dowel posts were then forced through the empty wire loops|
|Stage 1 complete! The rope bridge spans the two birch wood and craft foam end pieces, held in place by the dowel posts|