Posts Tagged ‘Work in Progress’

So, a little tease on the Mechanicus front.  I painted up one of these Forge World beauties for the ever growing army of my friend J.S.  This is quite a nice model with lots of detail to bring the Martian atmosphere to he tabletop.  I stayed with the color scheme of his other Mechanicus pieces.  The result is quite striking I think.


The body and top are monolithic pieces that (in my case) did not align as well as I would like.  I donned a dust mask and wrapped a wooden block wrapped with 400-grit sandpaper to get a flush join.  If you have trouble identifying the surfaces that need sanded, briefly sand one face on the wooden block to get it mostly flat.  Do NOT remove a lot of material at one go.  A half-dozen passes of the block will help get things started.  Then you should rub that face with a pencil  .Press the mating face of the complimentary piece firmly against it.  Look for smudges of transfer to identify the spots on it that need smoothed down.  Repeat while alternating pieces until you get a good join.  Remember to alternate which piece you sand so as not to remove more than absolutely necessary.  This method helps get a tight and flush join without removing too much material or resorting to large amounts of greenstuff plugging.

Assembly is pretty straight forward.  However, with the way the final assembly would hinder painting detail, I did paint the model in assemblies – body, shroud, gears, and sides.  Because of the small number of large pieces and the way that they join, the model required very few pins.  I did go ahead and magnetize the weapons and targeter because the stems seemed a bit fragile for the weight of the model.  Any shift during transport might have snapped them off.  Be careful to ensure the model sits flat when gluing the tracked sections to the body.  I have seen some of these with a terrible wobble to them.

Overall, another fun model from the boys at Forge World.  I’m sure that I’ll be doing more for the Mechanicum.  But, for now, there is a fresh batch of Skitarii sprues waiting to be assembled.  Onward!


So, I have had a jones for all things Mechanicus since I first picked up Warhammer 40,000 Rogue Trader in the late 80’s.  Something about those gritty, “hard line” sketches of robed figures festooned with rebreathers, dendrites, and all manner of arcane equipment really brought the atmosphere of the game into focus.  You could almost smell the mixture of incense and ozone and machine oil.

However, other than during the short life of GW’s Specialist Games Inquisitor tabletop game, I have never done much towards modeling Mechanicus figures.  Sure, I have plenty of bits in my bins and there are a few converted models that I tested to see about making some skitari and priests for the Rogue Trader RPG.  But, I have so many other projects (and commissions) on my plate, I could ever justify the time to build a scratch-built “counts-as” army for the Martian brotherhood.  But now, GW has released some gorgeous new figures that really do justice to the “feel” of the Mechanicus.  Forge World has also stepped up to the plate and rolled out their own beautiful pieces

Here are the first few models I have done for a client.  I love the detail and feel of the new pieces.  I know that I’ll be lightening my wallet soon to acquire some of my own.  Later i will do a long post with reviews, tutorial, and some tips and tricks for building your own sons of Mars.  For now, just sit back and take a look at the first few to come off of the assembly line.


UPDATE:  For those of you that never saw it.  Here is the Adeptus Mechanicus cake that my beautiful wife got me for my birthday a few years ago.

Commission piece for a friend.  This approximately 54mm scale model by Kabuki Models “Scarab Knight” is to be used as Magnus the Red in his Thousand Sons army.  Not my usual type of piece, but he wanted a conversion to include holding a Space Wolf helmet with attached spine… ala the movie Predator.

Kabuki Miniatures - Scarab Knight Magnus the Red

Kabuki Miniatures – Scarab Knight
Magnus the Red

The scarabs added to the breastplate and cloak are from GW’s Khemri line.  The weapon was moved from the right hand to the left to create more motion and a “on guard” feel.  the neck of the Space Wolf helm was hollowed out so the tail of a plastic, skeletal GW horse could be inserted as “spine”.

Kabuki Miniatures - Scarab Knight 02 Kabuki Miniatures - Scarab Knight 03








I also built up a theme base to match the desert terrain that his K-sons and Black Templars battle over.  The base is cork from the scrapbooking section of a local craft store and the cobra is the trumpet used by a GW skeleton musician.

Kabuki Miniatures - Scarab Knight base Kabuki Miniatures - Scarab Knight 05








Greenstuff (GW’s liquid as well as the ribbon type) and gap-filling super glue (cyano-acrilate) were used to correct the “handedness of the model and get a better fit for the helmet, staff, and cloak.

Magnus the Red 04 Magnus the Red 01

Magnus the Red 08

Magnus the Red 06

Magnus the Red 03 Magnus the Red 05
















Overall, the model was very crisp and had good detail.  If I have any complaints they would be that their resin is very brittle, the pale color of the resin makes finding mold lines and bubbles hard to find before painting, and the model comes with no photo of the completed model.  The packaging only shows the artist concept of the model.  This last made determining order of and execution of assembly overly tedious.  Again, not the type of thing I usually paint but it does give me a little itch to dip into the stock of old GW inquisitor scale minis I have tucked away in one of the bins.

Kabuki - Scarab Knight


As usual, feel free to share or comment.  I have a new camera coming so future posts have much better pictures.

Magnus the Red 09

Just a small update from the “feeding edge” of the Anphelion Splinter Hive Fleet.  Today we have a selection of elites, fast attack, and heavies.

The Raveners here are the old school originals.  Also of the old school variety is a pair of Tyrant Guard.

In the newer but still old category are a squad of Tyrant Guard and Hive Guard.  I wanted to avoid that “carbon copy” effect caused by GW making only one body style for a model.  So, I took a body from each version and just swapped out the arms from the other.  However, due to the pose on the hunched over Tyrant Guard body, the support arm for the gun would not reach.  A quick dip into the bits box for a plastic heavy weapon arm provided a nice alternative.

For the last part of this update we have some real heavies.  First is the plastic Mawloc that everyone loves so much.  Still a great model.  Next we have the original Tyranid Tyrgon made by Forge World for the launch of Imperial Armor 4: The Anphelion Project.  The modern plastic kit is based on this fantastic piece but does not do it justice.  The model has so much more detail and character than the plastic kit that I knew instinctively (heh heh) that it would become the Trygon Prime for my fleet.

To see the current state of the Anphelion Splinter Fleet or to get more information on it, please click on over to the project page.

Thanks again for the kind comments and feedback.

Doing the review of Fronltine Gaming’s Blast Zone F.A.T. Mat was great.  I enjoyed playing with and on it.  Luckily for us, the mat’s owner decided that he wanted to get a bunch of terrain matched up for use on his new gaming surface.  I’ve added an article on the build process in the terrain tutorial section.  What do you think of the pieces laid out on their fancy mat?

Make sure you check out pictures of all of the completed terrain pieces in the tutorial.  Spoiler alert!  I also did a couple crashed Dark Eldar Raiders to match the set.

Today I uploaded a large number of pictures of Tyranids for my Anphelion-themed splinter fleet.  Some of these are minis that I finally gotten around to taking pictures of.  Others are new additions to the swarm.  Below is a taste.  Be sure to check out the Anphelion Splinter Fleet home page for a complete up-to-date look.


I built, converted, and painted a rather large Chaos force for Jake S. here in Florida.  Here are a few work-in-progress photos.  The whole underway project is in the WiP section.  There are plenty of ideas and tips to check out.  I’ll have photos of the finished army up in a gallery page soon.  Stay tuned.


The bane of building any Tyranid force is crunching out the necessary masses of necessary troop models.  Any painter worth their salt really wants to get to the big bugs that not only show off their skills but also form the sharp end of their chittering horde.  I see any number of armies fielded where the generals and lieutenants and other specials are lovingly painted yet find themselves leading a force of primered underlings.  I myself have been guilty of this in the past.  But, to counter this natural impulse, I set painting goals that reward me with the job I really want to do.  If I want to paint a new HQ or heavy, I have to complete a fieldable squad of troops.  For marines that is usually 5, Orks 10, bugs can be 3-6-10 depending on type, and it varies further for other armies.  By doing this, I can ensure that my force grows in number as well as points.  now, because the desired piece and the troops may share the same colors or techniques, I can paint them together.  I just can’t move on to the next “wanted” model until the “needed” ones are done.  Try this out and see your opponents gaze in wonder not only at your few centerpiece models, but the blossoming glory of a growing fully painted army.

Here are the troops I painted to let me move on to some bigger and better bugs.  I will post them later.  Meanwhile, check out the Anphelion Splinter Fleet page or the New Beginning post for more of this growing swarm.


A couple of years ago I started experimenting with some new painting techniques that I hoped would speed up my painting of horde armies. I first tried on some Chaos Space Marines and then moved on to Orks. I liked the results and even did a couple army commissions using the technique (check the Tau, Lizardmen and Chaos Marine pages to see how they turned out).

Unfortunately, the method did not translate to my beloved Kraken Tyranids. Add to that the fact that almost all of Kraken had been painted during a month-long stay in the hospital, I figured that it might be time to reboot the army. Luckily for me, I had just acquired my autographed copy of Forge World’s Anphelion Project book. I liked the olive and bone look of these swamp-spawned monstrosities. I also like the idea that an Imperial Inquisitor’s pet project had gone awry and unleashed fresh horrors on the galaxy. So, I undertook to paint some of the unfinished bugs in my collection in the new scheme and with the new technique. I really liked the result and put some WiP and tutorial pics up on Warseer after the effort. Unfortunately, after the initial burst of enthusiasm, I drifted off into other projects and well… you can guess the rest. Here they are.

Fast forward a half-dozen years and BEHOLD! A new Tyranid codex is upon us. I know that the reviews are mixed and haters abound, but I find myself succumbing to the siren call of the hive mind once again. So today I am posting a picture of the models from years ago that will form the core of the new army. I am also creating a new page to post each unit as it is completed.

Anphelion Fleet - starting point

Warhammer 40k Battlefleet Gothic Tyranid Fleet 01

I know that there isn’t an playable list represented here (except for the Battlefleet Gothic Ships). The coming weeks will see my filling in the gaps and bolstering the army greatly. Once I get the codex I’ll be able to decide where to spend my money on reinforcements. For now, I know that I need more Termagants, Hormagaunts, Devourer Gaunts, and Gargoyles. Luckily for me, the closet-of-devouring holds many unpainted bio-monstrosities to start work on. I’ll keep you posted. You’ll need the head start if you hope to escape.

I just delivered a Forge World Void Dragon Phoenix to its new owner (JY).  I’ve kept track of the process in the Work-in-Progress section.  Check out this link for a review of the kit and a how-to on completing the fiddly bits.

Dark Eldar Void Dragon Phoenix 15


NOTE:  The customer only wanted me to trim, clean, pin, prep, and prime the model.  When he gets it painted I’ll see about posting some pics of the finished work.