Brother Talon, Flesh Eaters Assault Marine

Death in battle holds no fear for me when it serves the Emperor’s will.

Brother Talon, Flesh Eaters Assault Marine

My Flesh Eater project continues this week with Brother Talon, a chainsword-wielding Assault Intercessor equipped with an LED infra-visor.

Building & Painting

This miniature and the idea of Assault Marines with infra-visors was inspired by the classic model Rogue Trader Assault Marine art and the miniature shown above. For me this is the classic Assault Marine look; fearlessly storming the breach with little more than a pistol, chainsword and faith in the Emperor. Of course this battle brother has a little extra as well, in the form of the infra-visor. As the name suggests, the infra-visor was a piece of equipment that helped the wearer identify the infrared heat signatures of hidden targets. Ideal for spotting potential enemy ambushes in close-quarters fighting and boarding actions!

I’ve recreated this Rogue Trader-era look using the head of a Space Marine Primaris Incursor and the techniques described in my LED Eye Lens tutorial. The only difference worth nothing is that I used a TruOpto 1.8mm Green LED instead of the red LED described in the tutorial. The base model is a Primaris Assault Intercessor that I have modified to wear MkVI armour, in keeping with the War of the False Primarch theme for my Flesh Eaters army.

I’ve added some “gore” to the chainsword using a fairly simple technique. I applied two thick coats of PVA glue to the chainsword – waiting for the PVA to dry after each coat – and then applied a thick coat of Citadel Blood for the Blood God. I also streaked some of this over the side of the blade, hilt, hand and wrist guard. This process is shown in the two pictures above. You may also notice the ‘skull and crossbones’ on the wrist guard. This is a classic piece of heraldry that indicates Brother Talon is seeking an honourable death in battle to prove his faith in the Emperor. If you’re interested, my painting recipe for the red Flesh Eaters armour can be found in this previous post.  

The only other thing of note is the bolter. Rules-wise, I will use Brother Talon as a Primaris Assault Intercessor, so he is equipped with a heavy bolt pistol. I didn’t want to spoil the MkVI aesthetic though, so instead I used an Umbra-pattern bolter with a shortened magazine as a visual representation of the heavy bolt pistol.

That’s all for this week, I’ll be back again soon with more Flesh Eaters. Just two more models to go in this unit, and then I think it’s time for a character or two! As ever, thanks for reading, and please don’t forget you can also follow my work on Twitter and Instagram.

Classic ‘Screamer Killer’ Carnifex

My latest project is an update of the classic ‘Screamer Killer’ Carnifex released by Games Workshop way back in 1992. Although the first Warhammer models I ever bought were Blood Angels, my first full army were the Tyranids. In fact, Tyranids are the only army that I have consistently purchased a codex for in every edition of Warhammer 40K! So it’s a happy coincidence that I finished this on the same week the the 9th edition codex is being released.

Building & Painting

I have many happy memories using this model back in the 90s – mainly in unsuccessful attempts to beat my friend’s Avatar in close combat – but it definitely needed a little TLC after years languishing in a box. As well as paint-stripping and updating my previous ancient paint-job, the other goal of this update was of course to add a little LED magic to create a ‘bioplasma’ effect. I think it almost goes without saying that drilling through the chunky metal leg and body of the Screamer Killer was a lot more onerous than drilling out a plastic Space Marine leg! You can see the route of the wire in the images above. I was influenced by the classic Mark Gibbons artwork shown above, and hopefully you’ll agree that I’ve captured the look. I tried to echo the pose as well, although there’s only so much that can be done with the limitations of a chunky metal model.

The LED bioplasma effect was achieved using the techniques described in my Simple LED Muzzle Flare tutorial, only with a green 0805 chip LED instead of the yellow one listed in the tutorial. Additionally, the acrylic gel was simply painted with Citadel ‘Technical’ Hexwraith Flame instead of the yellow colours listed in the tutorial.

When it came to the painting I wanted to stick fairly close to the original scheme, especially as all my other Tyranid models are in red and bone. I deviated slightly from the classic ‘Eavy Metal scheme for this model by making all the armour plates and all the flesh areas a consistent colour. The original scheme had a bit of a mish-mash of colours in different areas that, in hindsight, didn’t make a lot of sense to me. I also added the mottling to the head to give a bit of visual interest to what is otherwise a large area of flat colour.

As ever, when I list my painting recipes on this blog, I’m not only recording them for those of you who are interested, but also as a reminder for myself! All paints listed are from the Citadel range and are applied over a grey undercoat.

  • Red Flesh
  • Mephiston Red base coat
  • Agrax Earthshade shade
  • Evil Sunz Scarlet highlight
  • Wild Rider Red highlight
  • Bone Armour
  • Zandri Dust base coat
  • Contrast Skeleton Horde shade
  • 50:50 Zandri Dust / Ushabti Bone highlight
  • Ushabti Bone highlight
  • Screaming Skull fine highlight
  • Pink Flesh
  • Corax White base coat
  • Carroburg Crimson shade
  • Emperor’s Children layer
  • Fulgrim Pink highlight
  • Dark Pink Flesh
  • Screamer Pink base coat
  • Drakenhof Nightshade shade
  • Pink Horror highlight
  • Purple Mottling
  • 50:50 Genestealer Purple / Emperor’s Children base coat
  • Genestealer Purple layer
  • Xereus Purple layer
  • Naggaroth Night layer
  • Green Organs
  • Waaagh! Flesh base coat
  • Biel-Tan Green shade
  • Warboss Green highlight
  • Skarsnik Green highlight
  • Yellow Eyes
  • Averland Sunset base coat
  • Agrax Earthshade shade
  • Yriel Yellow layer
  • Rhinox Hide pupils
  • Corax White fine highlight
  • Green Bioplasma
  • Hexwraith Flame base coat
  • Urban Base
  • Mechanicus Standard Grey base coat
  • Nuln Oil shade
  • Dawnstone drybrush
  • Administratum Grey drybrush
  • White Scar drybrush

That’s all for this week, I hope you’ve enjoyed this trip down memory lane – or enjoyed seeing the ‘Screamer Killer’ for the first time if you joined the hobby more recently! Hopefully see you back here again soon. Don’t forget you can also follow my work on Twitter and Instagram.

Ultramarines Primaris Lieutenant

What if…the Ultramarine from the ‘Epic Space Marine’ box art had survived to cross the Rubicon Primaris? That’s the question that I asked myself for this year’s #MarchForMacragge side-project!

If you’re on the ‘hobby’ parts of social media then you may have seen the #MarchForMacragge hashtag being used a lot in the last few weeks. The premise is simple – paint something Ultramarine-related at some point during March and then share the results. Last year I painted an Ultramarine Veteran, and this year I tasked myself with recreating and updating the Ultramarine shown in the central image above. My goal was to bring the character up-to-date with Primaris proportions and Mk X armour, while retaining as many of the characterful details of the artwork as possible.

Building & Painting

For those not familiar with the artwork I’m referencing, here is the cover art for the ‘Space Marine’ box. This version of ‘Space Marine’ was the second edition of the 6mm ‘Epic’ game system, a successor to the original ‘Adeptus Titanicus’ game, and a precursor to today’s game of the same name. This art is one of the iconic pieces from GW in the early 90s, in my opinion, and we saw it reproduced and reused on book covers and promotional materials throughout the decade.

The Lieutenant is mostly based on the limited edition ‘Lieutenant Amulius’ model, only with the head replaced with a Blood Angels head and that arms from an ‘Easy to Build’ Primaris Intercessor to more closely match the pose in the artwork. The laurel wreaths on his head and chest were sculpted from modelling putty. This is what my gaming group jokingly refer to as a “wallet bleed” class conversion, i.e. something that requires the cutting-up and repurposing of rare or difficult to obtain miniatures.

The LED bionic eye was mostly achieved using the basic techniques described in my LED eye lens tutorial, with one key exception; instead of recasting the head in resin I used one of the GW plastic heads. I drilled a 1mm hole into the bionic eye of the plastic head, and then a larger hole up through the neck to meet the eye hole in the middle of the head. I then fed the wires of my 3V red ultra nano SMD chip LED in through the eye hole and out of the neck, then gently pulled the LED into the hole. I then ran the wires through the torso and legs – again, as described in my LED eye lens tutorial – to connect to the battery in the base. Then I applied a small blob of Water Splash Effect Gel, available from Green Stuff World, to fill in the hole of the bionic eye.

Once the gel was dry I applied three successive coats of Citadel ‘Technical’ Spiritstone Red to give the eye some colour when the LED is off and also to prevent the LED appearing too bright. Looking at the two pictures above, the LED is switched on in the left hand image and turned off in the right hand image.

When it came to the heraldry on his right shoulder pad, I thought I was going to have to make an educated guess as to what was on the rear half of the pad. That was until I realised that the full heraldry is repeated on the flag of the Land Raider! At first I assumed those were small stars in the top right blue square of the banner, but it was only when I noticed they weren’t on the Lieutenant’s shoulder pad that it occurred to me they were probably bullet holes in the banner.

The heraldry is painted on freehand, except for the Ultramarine symbol on the left, which is painted over a small transfer. One of the best tips I’ve ever received about freehand heraldry is from my good friend Apologist, and that was never to use pure black or pure white for heraldry and text in miniature painting. The reason for this is that the pure colours really stand out and draw the eye too much. Therefore the dark lines in the heraldry and 50:50 Abaddon Black / Mechanicus Standard Grey, and the white areas are Corax White.

Anyway, that’s all for today. I hope you’re enjoyed this little side project! Hopefully see you back here again soon. Don’t forget you can also follow my work on Twitter and Instagram.

Kommando ‘Burna Boy’

Wot’s yellow an’ sayz “Help, I’m a ‘Umie and I’m on fire!”…? Err, hang on, I fink I told it wrong…

Slagskraga, Kommando Burna Boy

At last, the final Octarius Ork Kommando is complete, only around seven months after buying the box! I didn’t leave the Burna Boy until last for any conscious reason. I think it was just that I was more inspired by the other models and the effects I had planned, many of which were experimenting with new techniques, whereas I had a “safe” plan for the Burna Boy that fell back on tried-and-tested techniques.

Having finished the model, I do wish I’d got to it sooner. After spending a lot of time looking at it, I think it’s one of the most characterful models in the Kommando set. I particularly like the little details like the burn scars on its hands and arms, and the fuel pressure gauge on the burna.

Design, Building & Painting

To create the LED effects on the Burna Boy I primarily I used the techniques described in my ‘Simple LED Muzzle Flare tutorial‘, which can be found on my LED Miniatures Tutorials page. The main difference is that I used two of the yellow 0805 SMD chip LEDs instead of one. Both were connected in parallel to the single coin cell battery in the base.

In the left-hand image above you can see how the LEDs were arranged on the nozzle of the burna. In hindsight I should have positioned the top LED slightly lower down. I was hoping their respective glows would ‘merge’ to create a larger overall light once I’d applied the flame effect. But in the end they were slightly too far apart. The right-hand image above shows the path of the LED wires in this particular model – through the burna, up the left arm, through the torso and down through the left leg.

As you can see in the left-hand image above, I painted the red and black connecting wires of the LED yellow to help them blend into the final flame effect. The right-hand images shows the flame effect after I applied paint. I began with a shade of Citadel Fuegan Orange over the entire flame. Once this had dried I applied a yellow glaze of Citadel Lamenters Yellow (alternatively, a 1:4 glaze of Yriel Yellow to Lahmian Medium will work). Next I applied a shade of Citadel Druchii Violet to the top third of the flame only. Finally I applied a red glaze of Citadel Bloodletter Red (alternatively, a 1:4 glaze of Evil Sun Scarlet to Lahmian Medium will work) just to the top third. This is more for the looks of the flame when the LEDs are switched off. When the LEDs are on the distinction is harder to see.

That’s all for today. It’s very satisfying to actually finish a project and have all the Kommandos done! Check back again soon for some group pictures of Kaptain Gron and his Kommando Boyz. Don’t forget you can also follow my work on Twitter and Instagram.

Kommando ‘Comms Boy’

Yooz might find dis order a bit…shokkin’!

Rotkop, Kommando Comms Boy

When I started assembling the Kommando Comms Boy, I thought this was going to be a model without any LEDs. <pause for audience laugh> However just as I finished gluing it together, I realised there was a giant light bulb on the side of his shokka pistol! I couldn’t let that go unmodified, so I dutifully took the miniature apart and began to plan how to replace the plastic light bulb with a functioning LED.

Design & Building

The LED process was fairly simple by my standards. I cut the bulb from the shokka pistol with a sharp craft knife, and then used a 1mm drill bit to drill out the “glass” parts of the bulb, leaving the “metal” guard around it. I then inserted a 3V red ultra nano SMD chip LED where the bulb was, running the wire down through the pistol, right arm, torso and leg to the battery in the base. Once the LED was in place I returned the “metal” guard to cover it – as shown in the image above – and filled in the gaps between the guard with Water Splash Effect Gel (available from Green Stuff World) to provide a transparent replacement for the “glass” in the bulb. Finally, once the gel was dry I applied a shade of Citadel Spiritstone Red. This ‘Technical’ paint is like a thick, glossy glaze, and helps the gel to look like red glass when the LED is switched off. 

If you’d like to have a go at this yourself but you’d like more details, I’m afraid I don’t have a full tutorial for this technique at the moment. But the existing tutorial that is closest is my ‘Simple LED Muzzle Flare‘ tutorial, only with the red ultra nano SMD chip LED mentioned above, instead of the yellow 0805 chip LED shown in the tutorial.

That’s all for this week. Thanks for reading, and hopefully see you again soon for the tenth and final Kommando in the Octarius Kill Team!