Friday, February 25, 2011

Project Thunderbolt Part 2: Building A Base (Pic Heavy)

I wanted to make a cool display base for my Thunderbolt, but needed to come up with a solution to offset the flyer.  After lots of thinking and mind changing I decided to make the base with Epic scale models and do a "strafing run" scene.  This required a heavy base to accommodate my idea.  Luckily, I work at a steel fab shop and know how to work the CNC plasma table.  So, I sketched up a quick oval sized what I thought would work on the computer program and burned the base from 1/4" steel hoping this would be heavy enough without going overboard with thickness.

Above is what I came up with.  I also took a small strip of flatbar and hand-formed it using a piece of pipe to get some radius.  Above is what I came up with after welding it together.  I got pretty lucky and this was perfectly weighted.

I finally decided I wanted to do a desert canyon scene with models trying to flank, kinda like in some Black Library book I read.  Above is what I sketched up on some old cork tiles.

After roughly breaking the tiles on my marks it started to come together like a canyon.

A shot of all pieces broken out, with some small bits for the top to break up the flat surface.

The completed canyon before adding the sand.  I glued this with a hot glue gun initially.  Not a very good idea as the small one I have couldn't lay down enough glue fast enough before it started to cool.  I had to add some white glue around edges where it was pulling apart and weight down with books to complete process.

Another shot of the canyon before adding the sand.

A view of the canyon depth.  Came out around an inch deep and was perfect for the epic scale models I was using.

A shot with the sand added.  I used the GW basing material for this.  I have several kinds of basing material, but decided this was the best option with the very small sand and larger "boulders".  I say boulders because the models on the base are 6mm scale.

Another shot showing the pegs that are used to hold the Eldar Falcons I was able to find on Ebay.  I really wanted to use some Forgeworld Epic Tau Hammerheads, but found these were almost impossible to find.

Above show the slot I milled into the bottom of the Thunderbolt using a Dremel tool.  It's a little rough, but the fit is tight and lets me position the flyer at different angles of entry.

The only other shot I have showing the Falcons in place before painting.  

I think the first picture of this post shows exactly what I was aiming for when the idea popped into my head for a "strafing run" shot.  The nose of the flyer can be repositioned up to hide the stand, and this will be shown in later pics.  When I envisioned this, I wanted to be able to look over the tail of the Thunderbolt and have the image of small targets rapidly approaching firing range.  From the side view, it is a little odd and out of scale, but the "over the top" view makes this look much as I wanted.

I also built a smaller gaming base about the size of the Valkyrie base from steel to.  This will be shown in later posts.  It is very strong and heavy and will keep accidents from happening during gaming.

Well, that's all i got going with the base until I show the painting of it.  Next post will show the initial primer and weathering stages using the salt weathering technique I showed a while back on some Tau test models.  I also used the airbrush for the first time on this model doing some camouflage, so that will be shown as well.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Project Thunderbolt Part 1: Building My First Flyer

Finally, I'm gonna try to get something on the blog about this project.  My cousin, who posts here as reklawsj, is the only 40k gamer I know besides me in my county.  He bought me this Forgeworld Thunderbolt because I wouldn't stop talking about how awesome it was, and I got him a summer job at where I work, so he says, I think he just wanted me to get this thing on the table so he could shoot it out of the sky first turn played and dash my dreams.  

So, as usual this thing sat in a bag for a year before I decided to tackle it.  I started building this last June, so yeah it's taken a while, work, new house, wife, 2 year old and baby, you know the usual suspects.  At this point I have finished painting this thing, except for some weathering powder experiments I am going to do on it.  I ordered a few powders from Secret Weapon Miniatures and expect them in the mail this week.  I'll let you know how this experiment turns out.

On with the build.  First I laid out all the parts to make sure everything was included and got to work with flash removal(shown below).  This was extremely messy and I did it when my family was gone so I could get everything cleaned up safely.  Resin dust is bad for you.  A couple of the pieces needed a little heating and straightening in some hot water, but nothing major.

Then it was onto the soap bath.  I usually soak my parts overnight and scrub several times.  These ended up being in the bath for many days, because I couldn't get time to get back to them.  None of this matters, just be sure they are nice and clean if you intend on keeping the paint on the model.

After cleaning, it was time to assemble.  And yes, what you see below are all the instructions given.  The back of one of those pages shows the parts laying out and the other is blank.  Pretty much they show you a picture of the fuselage without engines, with engines and then plane done.  Even with the lack of instruction, it is a pretty self-explanatory model and with some test fitting and additional sanding it was finally assembled.  In a few of the main joints I put some pins and some balls of Green Stuff to strengthen the model.

Below are a couple of pics in its "ready for primer" stage.  

I wish I had taken a few more pics of the build-up of this thing so it would be a little more informative for people trying to build one themselves.  Sorry.  Next installment in this series of posts will be the base I built that holds the flyer about a foot and a half out of the center.

I'm trying to get back on the hobby wagon now.  I organized my paint area last night and hope to paint up my Hordes army next before getting back on the 40k stuff.  I can't decide which army I want to paint that is built. I have went to my local game store and played Hordes for the first time now, so I'm pretty excited to get the Trolls done and on the table more.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

"Hobby List of the Week": Sallie Wing

So back when the shiny new Space Marine codex came out I was one of the many who came down with Vulkan fever. Twin linked meltas and flamers? Yes please! I immediately bought way too much Space Marine stuff (can you have too much) and started an army. I now have a wide range of Salamanders to choose from for a great variety of games. One thing I might have went overboard with is buying Terminators. Salamanders love their terminators right? Right! So I have 40+ different terminators, half of which have never been used in a game, because well, there aren't enough slots!

But a few weeks ago something wonderful happened. They FAQ'd Dark Angels. I don't like Dark Angels, never have, too many secrets. But I figured "hey, every chapter has an elite first company, better yet they're still green!" So this is my approach at the Salamander DeathWing or Fire Drakes as they're known.

Belial w/ Thunder Hammer and Storm Shield

Chaplain Interrogator w/ Terminator Armor

5 Terminators
Company Banner upgrade
Apothercary upgrade
4 w/ TH/SS
1 w/ Cyclone Missle and Chainfist

5 Terminators
4 w/ TH/SS
1 w/ Heavy Flamer and Chainfist

5 Terminators
2 w/ TH/SS
1 w/ Cyclone Missle and Chainfist
2 / Powerfist and Storm Bolter

5 Terminators
2 w/ TH/SS
1 w/ Cyclone Missle and Chainfist
2 / Powerfist and Storm Bolter

Venerable Dread
multi melta
heavy flamer
extra armor
in Drop Pod

Heavy Support
Crusader w/ pintle storm bolter

Land Raider w/ pintle storm bolter

2000 pts
4 scoring units
10 kill points
25 models

The plan: So Belial and the Chaplain will ride with the command termie squad in the crusader. The other CC squad can ride in the other land raider. They can start on the table and in the first turn you can deep strike in one of the 2 termie squads in reserve. Then hopefully around turn 3 or 4 you get a dread comin in and the other termie squad.

I really like the idea of Belial with a command squad of termies. 2+ save with 3+ invlun, and FNP? I'm salivating. I could trade out the 2 land raiders and get 2 more squads of termies to come in, but Land Raiders are just fun and fit the fluff. The Dread may not do too great but again I'm a fluff player and I think he fits in really well. The chappy is just there to get some rerolls in CC. I'm used to TH rerolls with my sallies so I think that squad should be pretty amazing.

This may not be the most amazing list but should be fun to play and in my opinion is the most important thing. I think it may also be a tough list to play since I'll most likely be outnumbered even my Grey Knights. But seeing this many Salamander termies on the table should be a really cool sight.

Now if I can just figure out a way to get those flamers and meltas twin linked again......