Storm Eagle, Part 2

One great thing about the newest kits from Games Workshop is that it seems like they’re doing a lot of things with magnetizing in mind. Of course, the tight-lipped folks at Games Workshop, who are adept at underselling themselves for some dumb reason, don’t ever mention this. But kits like the plastic Venerable Dreadnought, the Grey Knights Dreadknight, and the Storm Raven really lend themselves to magnetizing.

The Storm Raven is a bit odd – the front turret isn’t too bad for magnetizing, the hurricane bolters aren’t too difficult to magnetize, but the easiest part to magnetize – the missiles under the wings – don’t have options, so there’s no reason to magnetize them. With the Storm Eagle, it looks like someone noticed and put a weapon in there.

It didn’t require any cutting at all to magnetize the wing weapons – I used Apoxy Sculpt to sculpt some anchors for the magnets. Check it out:

Magnet mounts
Using a lump of apoxy sculpt, I mounted the magnet inside the weapon compartment on the wing. The green color is liquid Green Stuff I painted on to double-secure the magnets.

I didn’t need to cut the guns, though I did have to trim the tab on the lascannons to make them fit just right. I super-glued the magnets, then slapped Apoxy Sculpt around them and a little bit over them to really secure them.

Magnetized guns
Hooray for magnets!

And here’s how well it works:

Magnets work!
Rare earth magnets hold very fast, of course.

Next, I’ll paint up the inside before assembling the Storm Eagle!

Storm Eagle, Part 1

As mentioned previously, my Storm Eagle has arrived! I immediately dug in, opened the bags, pulled out all the pieces and started playing with them. As such, I didn’t get a good shot of the parts and some of the early assembly… not that there was anything too exciting going on there.

The Storm Eagle is, of course, built on the Storm Raven chassis (so to speak) – the kit includes loads of resin parts, but also about two-thirds of the Storm Raven kit. The Storm Eagle, though, is much more sensibly proportional, leaving the Storm Raven looking even more goofy in comparison. The Storm Eagle is bristling with weapons, with two sweet missile racks on top, lascannons on the wings, and the same turret as the Storm Raven up front. Thankfully, they left off the hurricane bolters that make the Storm Raven look even more like an overstuffed turkey. (Not only that, but the hurricane bolters line of fire doesn’t even make sense.)

Let’s see how far I’ve gotten – here are some shots of the hull:

Hull shots
Port interior, starboard exterior... it's a starship, so you've gotta use boating lingo.
Top and bottom hull
The inside of the top (which is a combination of the resin and plastic components) and a new resin floor piece.

That’s all for now, but in the next part, I’ll get into some magnetizing!

Airmail from the United Kingdom

One of my favorite things is opening the door to see an airmail package from the United Kingdom.

Airmail from the UK
This package made me unreasonably excited.

This package meansĀ only one thing – a shipment from Forgeworld!

Inside the box are all the parts for my new Storm Eagle, a special present to myself from myself! Stay tuned – I’ll be unboxing this badboy and digging right in this weekend!


Reposing the Ravager

I still have a lot of content to post, but no time to post it in! But, for the sake of keeping up with the blogging if nothing else, here’s a quick post about reposing a metal barbarian.

The upside of certain plastic minis kits, like the Grey Knights for instance, is getting a bunch of arms and legs and putting them together however you like. This used to make for less dynamic models, but most of the newest Games Workshop plastic kits actually produce very dynamic (and detailed) miniatures while allowing lots of different possibilities.

With metal kits, like the Tharn Ravagers, you get very detailed miniatures but limited possibilities. With the Tharn Ravagers, there are actually only three poses. So, when buying a box of 4, you get two with the same pose.

I kinda hate that.

In response to the hate, I put effort into trying to make each figure unique. Previous to the existence of this blog, I fiddled with my Tharn Bloodtrackers enough to make the unit look pretty heterogeneous, but that was a bit easier than the beefy Tharn Ravagers will be.

I assembled three of the four as normal, but the fourth got some heavy modification. First, I used a pair of pliers and a pair of clippers to bend out the arms. But let me give you some tips on how I did this. First, check out the tools:

A Leatherman Skeletool and a cheap pair of clippers.

These tools both have large open areas. When bending a metal mini, the last thing you want to do is clamp down on the detail areas – it will irrevocably mar the miniature. Instead, I settled the lower and upper arms into the open areas in each tool, behind the cutting/gripping tips. This wasn’t easy, but it let me bend the model’s arm without ruining the detail. Here are the results (click for larger versions):

Original pose is on the left, repose is on the right.
Here you can see where I clipped the left arm to actually separate the upper and lower arm so it could be bent. I'll probably have to clean this up with some green stuff.
Another angle!

The modified Ravager is headless, but I intend to give him some unique Green Stuff addons to further distinguish the two, possibly including a headdress or hood.

The metal is basically at the breaking point, so I’m going to beef up the arms with decorative elements that will serve to strengthen the arms at the elbows and shoulders. I have a lot of fun trying to use Green Stuff to reinforce the model while making it look cooler. We’ll see if I can work that in this case.

More to come!

Apoxie Sculpt for Scenic Bases

I promised some alternate uses for Apoxie Sculpt, so the next installment of Save vs Blog focuses on one suggested use – scenic bases! Since it’s inexpensive, sculptable, and cures super-hard, it’s a better alternative than baking clay, air-dry clay, and Green Stuff for this purpose.

It was a rock... lobster! (Not really)

First, let’s look at Lug. With a giant polar bear, you want an inspiring base. I decided he should stand on a giant rock in the snow. So I pulled out my Apoxie Sculpt to make the aforementioned rock. I mixed it, waited about an hour, then started slapping it on the base and sculpting it with my standard sculpting tools (my fingers, and some actual tools). I went for a dynamic shape, which is, of course, a rock tapering wider from the base. The opposite looks a little more boring.

Once the rock cured completely, I drilled holes in Lug’s feet, glues pins into the feet, then pushed the foot pins down onto the rock. This left two little scratches as perfect guide points to drill holes. The end result was a very sturdy model:

Bear on a Rock

So, happy with the big bear, I turned to his dwarf buddy. Brun Cragback has a slight problem – he’s leaning forward like a drunken monkey:

Drunken Dwarf
I know dwarves are stereotypically drinkers... but come on!

So, this is a problem easily solved with scenic terrain. To match Lug, he’ll be standing on a rock in the snow! This rock will be tilted towards the back so that Brun will even out. Again, I wait an hour after mixing, I sculpt the rock (making it tall to give Brun a little more height), and then I test fit Brun to make sure he’s standing straight up.

Dwarf Upright!
This angle actually makes it look like he's still leaning forward, but he actually is standing straight.

And from the front:

Head-on Dwarf!
Not a great picture, but you can see the pointy front of the rock, which I like..

I also did a nice base for the Circle warlock, Baldur the Stonesoul, to make him a little more prominent on the battlefield.

Baldur the Stonesoul
Hopefully, the runes will show up alright when he gets painted.

Okay, maybe “scenic bases” was an overstatement, but Apoxie Sculpt is an easy way to throw something under a guy to make him look a bit cooler. It also can cover up a problem, like a leaning mini. Remember, I also used it to straighten up my Woldwarden:

I put a rock under your rock-man so he won't rock when he rocks. (Get it?)

So this is just one use of Apoxie Sculpt – I’ve also filled molds with it and tried sculpting more complex shapes with it. I need to practice with it more to determine how to sculpt it well, but I think I prefer Green Stuff for that purpose.

Anyway, I’ve got a backlog of things to post here, so hopefully, the blog will be busy for the next few weeks…