SAFETY - Practice it
The first step in making any of the trees is the manufacturing of the trunk itself. Almost all of my trees are made in one of two ways, either wires covered in a flexible coating or I use wooden dowels. I’ll cover the dowels in this section and the deciduous types later on.
The first step is to cut your wooden dowels to the correct length. For war gaming, four to six inches lengths is approximately the same as twenty to thirty foot trees. For doweling, I use 1/8”, 1/4”, and plain round toothpicks the most.
This is where the electric drill comes in extremely handy. If you don’t have one start with the fine wood rasp and holding the dowel flat on a work surface taper the end to a long point. You can use coarse sandpaper to do this too.
You need to taper the dowel.
The idea here is to take the piece of doweling and to shape it like a tree.
It doesn’t have to be perfect, just pointy!
Using a drill with a belt sander like shown in the picture to the right will speed up the tree tapering by many, many minutes. If you don’t have a belt sander, the drill and using the sandpaper in hand or stapled to a work surface will work too, just not quite as fast.
Or as mentioned, use your wood rasp to rough it out and then hand sand to finish.
Make it pointy on both ends so you can mount them in your terrain easier. I use a pencil sharpener later on if I forgot to point the base with the sander.