Sunday 31 October 2021

Goblin Sky-Ship 2

 I've been chipping away at the big goblin flying machine. I wanted to build up the front of the skaven screaming bell frame, to look like the forecastle of a pirate ship. I made a box from coffee stirrers, and added a little staircase made from plasticard. It was fiddly, but I think it looks right.

Here's the raised deck when assembled.

I also painted the engine block that will be at the rear of the machine.

It's a bit rough and ready, but it'll do.

Then it was a matter of adding some crew. The gnoblars on the scraplauncher kit look quite piratical as it is, and one of them happened to be winding a wheel. He'd look perfect for the guy steering the ship. Another was pointing and holding a telescope. He could be providing "helpful" advice.

The third gnoblar came from the ogre Blood Bowl team. These guys are quite a bit smaller than the regular Warhammer gnoblars, but they're much crisper sculpts. This little chap looks as if he's been surprised by a change of direction and is about to fall out.

It's getting there - slowly. Oh, and here's a mast. It's just a bit of dowel at the moment, but hopefully you can see how this is going to develop.

Sunday 24 October 2021

Goblin Sky-Ship 1

I took a break from the marines (I've got at least 10 more to do), and took out a project that I've had lying about for ages but never really started.

A long time ago I got a broken Skaven Screaming Bell off ebay. I cut the actual bell and its arch off the model, leaving me with the wooden framework that the bell sits on. It looks very primitive and slightly like the shape of an old sailing ship:

I thought it could be the basis for a flying-machine, crewed by goblins. I had an image of this thing being rickety and jury-rigged, with goblins swarming over the exterior, constantly making alterations and repairs, shouting orders, falling overboard and generally creating chaos. That sort of model would require at least half a dozen crewmen, probably plastic gnoblars.

I had a resin steam engine that I bought several years ago at a show. It was the right size and would make a good power source for the machine. I then built up a rear deck where the ship's wheel would be. It was almost entirely made from coffee stirrers, with a ladder turned on its side for a rear railing and a barrel from the excellent Ogre Kingdoms scraplauncher to give the various spindly bits something to stick to. It looked like this:

The next bit I made was a cannon to go at the front. This was made from a metal Mantic model that I got in a sale. It's called a "Goblin war trombone", and is an oversized blunderbuss. I chopped off the wheel and monopod on which the gun rested, and made it a very small gun carriage instead, out of a little block of wood. That was given four tiny wheels, which were cut from plastic rod.

I then made a little section of decking for it to sit on, along with two plasticard runners to soak up the recoil. This will be going at the front of the ship, under the big flat deck.

The metal wheel/monopod from the war trombone will be some kind of gear underneath the engine deck, which will be powering the rotors (somehow):

Not a bad start, but there's a lot of work to go. Here's a very rough idea of the general shape:

This might take a while...

Wednesday 20 October 2021

Even More Brightly-Coloured Marines

 Here are some more knightly coloured marines.

The first chap was made from the body of an Iron Warriors Warsmith that I got off ebay for a few quid. I really like the details of his extensive bionic adaptations. He was missing a left arm, but by chance I had a suitably mechanical left arm lying around, which I got in a job lot of random bits ages ago. I think it was made by Puppetswar or someone like that. He got a standard paint job for this little army, with a bit more metal than usual.

This second chap is an old Black Templars Sword Brethren miniature. He's a great model. I really like the detailing on the Sword Brethren, especially this guy. I gave him a left hand, but otherwise he's exactly as per usual.

The third marine is based on the body of the old Emperor's Champion miniature, which came missing its right arm and most of its left. I really like this old model. It's one of the most stylish takes on marine armour I've ever seen, and it looks very medieval. I added a sword arm from... somewhere, and a plastic left arm with a plasma pistol. As ever, painting the plasma was a nuisance and I'm not entirely happy with the results. But I do like him a lot. The combination of the style of the armour and his pose make him look very dramatic. 

And that's it for the minute. I promised not to buy a load of new models, but I've already bought five blokes with missile launchers off ebay. I hope I'm not trying to make a marine army, after all those years of mocking them. 

Thursday 14 October 2021

Jolly Space Marines

In a world of endless warfare and sepia ink, what could be more subversive than to look cheerful? Here are some more of the jolly, questing-knight style space marines that I was making a few months ago.

I've had a half-painted loyalist space marine on my desk for ages, so I thought I'd finish him off. He was made from a captain's body, Blood Angel arms, and a Bretonian helmet.

Then I thought I'd make another of these guys. This chap has a Blood Angels body with some of the skulls filed off to make him look a bit more heroic ("Hans, are we the baddies?"). His pistol arm was plastic, and the sword arm was metal. 

The third marine was the body of a high-ranking marine from the Masters of the Chapter set. I've no idea which master he is. Maybe geography. I gave him a grey knight head and spear, and converted a hand so it would hold his helmet, which came off a very old Bretonian sprue.

I've ordered a couple more knightly-looking marines off ebay. I like the small metal marines: they've got more character than the recent primaris ones, and they can be converted without too much trouble (and they're much cheaper!). In putting these guys together, I've tried to minimise chapter-specific bits as well as skulls, but I've not been too careful about this as long as the end result is good. I doubt I'll make a full army of them, but a few more would be cool. Enough to sit around a big round table...

Wednesday 6 October 2021

Kroot Battlesuit

 The plan to spend less on miniatures continues. About ten years ago, I made a little walker for the Tau - or, rather, the Kroot. I thought it would be cool to have a mech suit that would be used by a particularly trusted Kroot warrior: perhaps with stealth capabilities, but definitely taking its look from the shape of Kroot soldiers.

Anyway, it was a bit basic, and had rubbish arms which then fell off and were lost. I gathered the rather knackered bits together, along with some other parts that I'd acquired along the way, and had a think about what to do with it next.

The main parts were there, but they needed to be put together into the right shape ("I'm playing the right notes, just not in the right order"). With a bit of trial and error, I came up with this:

And eventually this:

It uses:

- legs and lower body from a Space Crusade dreadnought (which was already trashed)

- body from a Gates of Antares Ghar warsuit

- shoulder armour from a Gates of Antares cannon

- Dark Eldar Talos armguards for the rear motors or whatever they are

- a space marine Rhino headlamp

- some random Zoid bits for the upper arms

- plasticard

- many Tau parts

- and a shoe from an ogre (for the lower jaw).

Things like this always look like a right mess until you spray the undercoat on. Painted entirely black, it looked surprisingly un-crap. I decided to go for a dark colour scheme, in imitation of the excellent mech suit from the film District 9. Here we go:

It also has an engine, or something like that:

Painting this thing was reasonably simple: dark grey for the whole model, with dirty metal (dark brown washed black and chipped with sponged-on Boltgun). I tried to copy the colours I'd used on the Tau battlesuits, and to use spot colors to draw the eye towards its head (otherwise it would be hard to tell which end is which). Some weathering powder was used on the lower legs, and a bit of crumpled carboard was painted to resemble corrugated metal.

Here then is the finished mech from Pech with his little friends. Fokkin' prawns!