“No More Last Stands!” Crimson Fists ‘Armies on Parade’ 2020

“We are surrounded, Brother-Captain,” said Lieutenant Alehoc, gesturing at the frothing sea of greenskins around their position. Captain Grimstone nodded curtly.

“Excellent, that means we can launch the counter-attack in any direction, as the old proverb says.”

Alehoc grinned, then began issuing orders.

“Forward brothers! Show these xenos what it means to face the Crimson Fists! Remember Rynn’s World!“

The fourth company surged forward, bellowing their new battle cry.

“Remember Rynn’s World! No more last stands!”

Here we are then. Three and a half years after starting this project Captain Grimstone and the Crimson Fists fourth company are now at 60 Power Level and submitted for my first ever entry to the ‘Armies on Parade’ competition. I call this entry “No More Last Stands!”.

I’m very pleased with how this project has turned out. The display board was made from a picture frame with a hill built up from layers of foam card and putty. I deliberately selected quite a compact display board as I’ve found it easier to photograph LED models when they are close together, although getting these photos took over an hour! The other factor that made me want a compact board was so it would fit in my display cabinet once it was done.

The impression I wanted to create was of the hill from the iconic Rogue Trader cover art, only this time the Crimson Fists weren’t making a last stand, but breaking out and surging forward in their new Primaris forms. Basing the board around a hill also made it easier to display the models in a compact space without them obscuring each other too much.

Don’t forget, if you’d like to have a go at LED miniatures yourself then I have my tutorials here and FAQ here. I now also have handy lists of suggested tools and consumables for anyone who is just getting into miniature electronics, which can be found here.

There are various debris scattered around the battlefield, including ork and human skulls, and some original RTB01 Space Marine helmets that I had in my bits box.

That’s all for today. Do check back in the future for even more Crimson Fists, as well as various other side projects. Don’t forget you can keep up with my latest work on Instagram and Twitter.

Ancient Santec, Dreadnought of the Fourth Company

This galaxy has a million ways to kill you. I simply never found one that suited me.

Ancient Santec, Dreadnought

Most of my recent posts have started with a lament about how many years a given unit has taken to make and paint. But although this Redemptor Dreadnought has been sat on my ‘Shelf of Shame’ since 2017, once I actually picked it up and started work the assembly and painting only took about three weeks. Behold Ancient Santec, Redemptor Dreadnought of the Fourth Company of the Crimson Fists!

The banner was a little addition to echo the dreadnoughts of the past and give a bit of a retro vibe. I was particularly picturing the metal dreadnoughts with large banners that were very common in second edition Warhammer 40K. The fist on the banner is one of the Forge World Imperial Fist brass insignia set (sadly now OOP I believe), and the banner itself is the company banner from the Company Command box.

‘Onslaught’ Assault Cannon

Of course it wouldn’t be a new addition to my Crimson Fists if there wasn’t some sort of electronics involved. There are the LED lights on the chassis and also the LED muzzle flare which are obvious from the photos. But in addition to these there is also the motorised assault cannon…

So how was this done? I’m afraid the looming Armies on Parade deadline has prevented me from finding the time to write a full tutorial, but perhaps this is something I’ll come back to later. However I have included a quick summary of parts below, as well as a photo so you can see how it all went together.

  • The motor is a 3V DC micro miniature motor (6mm x 10mm) that I picked-up from eBay a while ago. These are the sort of motors used in model helicopters. The supplier I got it from has gone, but a quick search of eBay or Amazon will turn up many similar items.
  • The motor is connected to a 3V battery in the base via a circuit that has two switches in parallel. One switch is a standard sub-miniature toggle switch that I use in most of my projects. This is for turning the assault cannon on for extended periods when it’s on display. The other switch is a miniature ‘push to make’ switch which I added to the top of the base that I could use to activate the assault cannon for a quick burst during gameplay. Activating either switch independently will activate the assault cannon. I had originally hoped to find a latching push switch that would have fulfilled both roles, but I couldn’t find one that was as small as I wanted.
  • A length of 2mm square hollow tube was used to make the lower ‘support’ below the barrels and hide the muzzle flare LED wires. Again, this was sourced from eBay.
  • The muzzle flare was illuminated by two 0805 3V yellow chip LEDs. These are on a separate circuit to the motor.
  • The resin muzzle flare was made using the casting techniques described in my tutorial.

As you can see in the picture below, the ‘push to make’ switch on the top of the base is hidden under an Ork skull. It seemed fitting somehow – if you want the assault cannon to fire, press down on the dead greenskin!

So that is 60 Power of Crimson Fists complete! I’m really pleased with Ancient Santec – not just with the electronic effects, but also the paintjob, which I think is one of my neatest to date. Now it’s onwards to Armies on Parade 2020, and I feel like I’m on the home straight! All that remains is to finish the display board…

Crimson Fists Reiver ‘Squad Bast’ Complete

We lit the signal flare and before we knew it Reivers were descending out of the night like wraiths. I hope they scare the xenos because they sure as hell scare me!

Tobith, Guardsman

Another long running project draws to a close as I finish Reiver ‘Squad Bast’ one year and four months after beginning the first member! This squad has a long and storied history before even hitting the table top; you may remember that Sergeant Bast won the Bronze Everchosen award at the Nottingham Warhammer store and that the half-finished unit appeared on the Warhammer TV Community Hobby Round-up.

From the start I knew I wanted this squad to be arriving via grav-chute with some members of the unit still in the middle of landing. How exactly to achieve that while also hiding the LED wires in a convincing way is one of the reasons this unit ended-up on the back-burner for a year. In the end I settled on the idea of the Reivers descending above an illuminated signal flare.

As you can see from the ‘work in progress’ picture above, the Reivers are held aloft by a small length of stiff wire. The connecting LED wires are then looped tight around this wire to keep them neat. All the wires are then hidden by cotton wool sprayed red to mimic a signal flare. If you’d like to know a little more about the LED techniques involved then don’t forget I have my LED Eye Lens tutorial here and my LED Muzzle Flare tutorial here. The signal flare effect was enhanced with an additional Tru-Opto 1.8mm 3V Red LED on the base. This was simply wired in parallel with the helmet eye lens LED as it is an LED of the same type.

Now the Reivers are done there is just one more unit to add to “complete” the Crimson Fists for Armies on Parade 2020 and bring the Power Level to a nice round 60 Power. Check back soon to find out which unit it is!

Crimson Fists Hellblasters ‘Squad Ordoñez’ Complete

An overheating weapon is the Emperor’s way of telling you you should have killed your target with the first shot.

Brother Hestos, Hellblaster

Finally, a mighty two years and two months after initially starting work on the unit, the five-man Crimson Fists Hellblasters ‘Squad Ordoñez’ is now complete!

Of course that hasn’t been my only hobby focus during that time, as evidenced by my other blog posts. The reason it took so long is that while attempting to make the second model in the unit I accidentally broke four pink LEDs, which was all my remaining stock at the time. After that I rage quit, returned the half finished model to the Shelf of Shame for 18 months and moved on to the Reivers, which are still also unfinished now I think about it!

Don’t be cautious of supercharging your plasma incinerator. Be cautious of the target that requires you to supercharge!

Brother Tiro, Veteran Hellblaster

I’m afraid I don’t really have anything new to say about the techniques involved in making these models. I used my tried-and-tested LED Plasma Weapon technique that can be found in my Tutorials section. I think it’s worth mentioning that if you feel like giving LED plasma weapons a try but that tutorial looks a bit daunting, then I also have my Simple LED Plasma Weapon tutorial, which uses a slightly different and significantly easier technique.

So there we are then, the result of over two years effort and one step closer to completing the 2017 Dark Imperium boxed set! I’m reasonably pleased with the outcome, although I may revisit the very first model in the unit as both my modelling and painting have improved a lot since then. But that’s something for the future – right now I’m just relieved I don’t have to think about or look at Hellblasters again for a while! Now I guess I’d better get back to those Reivers…

Brother Adio, Crimson Fists Hellblaster

“What’s more painful than venting plasma you ask? Failing in your duty to the Emperor.”

Brother Adio, Hellblaster

About three weeks ago I ran a poll on my Instagram and Twitter. The question posed was which of the two Crimson Fists units that I was working on I should finish first: my Hellblasters or my Reivers?

The results were conclusive – although Twitter seemed a lot more certain than Instagram did! So to honour that choice, here’s Brother Adio, the third member of my Dark Imperium Hellblaster squad.

I’m afraid I don’t really have any new techniques to discuss with this miniature. The plasma glow effect was achieved using the tried-and-tested technique detailed in my LED Plasma Weapon Tutorial which can be found on my LED Miniature Tutorials page.

In terms of conversion – besides the LEDs – this was essentially the stock model from the Dark Imperium set. The only changes I made were swapping the MkX helmet for a MkIV helmet, and adding a small ‘battle honour’ to the side of the plasma incinerator to help conceal some of the re-sculpting done to accommodate the LED. Although I’ve used all sorts of helmet varients with my Crimson Fists in the past, I decided to stick with the MkIV for the Hellblasters. This is because the MkIV is different enough from the MkX to add a bit of variety, but also similar enough that it doesn’t draw the eye. With the Hellblasters, I very much wanted the focus to be on their weapons!

So that’s three down from my Hellblaster unit, and two to go! That’s it for this week, but check back soon for even more Hellblasters.