Tuesday
Jan272015

Crossing My T's and Turning Corners ... more bug hunt

Terrain Making – Slow and steady is a reasonable pace or at least that's what I keep telling myself. I've been doing pretty good sticking with this project for most of the month so far and am really happy with my progress so far. 

I just wrapped up a few of the t-intersections and corner sections, these were a little trickier to assemble than the other components I've built so far, mostly because the corner sections require a bit of patience to line up flush, it's also tricky to get the support struts in the center part of the corner. I think this is because I've applied paint before assembly and the parts don't have any wiggle room (honestly you could put some of it together without glue and have no problems). 

I painted these using the same technique as I did with the straight sections. Dark Gray base coat, Light Gray details, Gunmetal Metallic followed by the red and yellow piping on the conduit sections. Once that is dry I applied a wash of Minwax Water based Onyx Stain thinned down 50/50 with water over each piece. I followed up the wash with a light dry brush of the Light Gray to bring out the details and add some weathering. 

After painting the hazard stripes it was a simple matter of gluing the whole thing together. The straight sections are the bread and butter of this set but these pieces make it really interesting. I'm considering trying to add one of the interior wall sections to the end of one of these if it will fit easily. It could add another layer of complexity in fighting within the terrain. Of course I think I need to play on this a few times before modifying any of the sections (or ordering more).

Friday
Jan232015

Still Gluing ... Bug Hunt Corridors WIP

Terrain Making – I've finally wrapped up gluing all the roof sections, crates and loader for this project. These are the items I decided made more sense to assemble prior to painting. The kits go together really easily and it's so nice having all the parts cut out and packaged in neat little baggies. I didn't have any missing or broken parts which is quite the feat considering how many tiny pieces there are in each section. 

Once you put one or two of them together the parts make perfect sense and you can quickly put them together. It is important to pay attention to the numbering system on the instruction sheet. If you make up your own order it is very hard to get some parts to fit. Namely on the t-intersections and 4-way intersections, it's important to put the cross-sections together in order so you can flex the parts gently to get them to fit snug.

Now that these parts are assembled I'll go back to the actual corridors and continue the slow process of painting them up prior to assembling them.

Thursday
Jan222015

Hazard Stripes ... 

Terrain Making – So the template idea I had for the railings didn't really work out. Because of how small the bars are it was difficult to keep my acetate template in place (probably should have cut it from masking material or used stencil adhesive). So rather than hold up my progress to  figure it out I opted to just freehand the lines. I'm sure a decal or stencil would probably be more consistent but this works.

Once I finished painting the stripes on each railing I was ready to begin assembling the straight sections. This is pretty straightforward and just a little bit of woodglue is all that is needed to make them super sturdy. The design of this terrain set continues to impress me with how well detailed and quickly it goes together.

I also glued the florescent tubes in place at this stage. I do need to go back in and paint the tiny wooden caps as they were to small to paint prior to assembly. I'm also going to apply a coat of glow-in-the-dark paint to each tube. It's probably overkill but It could look cool and I have a bunch of it that I got on sale after Halloween.

The airlock got glued together at this point as well. I'm really happy with how the interior of these look. The effort to paint them first was well worth it as there is no way I could get my brush into these spaces once the whole thing is put together.

Friday
Jan162015

On the Painting Table ... Chaos Marine Heavy Support

Warhammer 40K – The small chaos force I worked on last year is getting some reinforcements. My client is slowly sending groups of models to grow his force for me to paint up. This is a 3-Color + project so the paint job is fairly basic. I see this quite often with my 40k or Warmachine clients since they have so many models they opt for a really basic paint job on the majority of the troops and splurge for a higher level paint job on the characters. Which makes sense most of your one wound models don't see a ton of time on the table so I get it. 

This batch consists of a landraider and minimum unit of Havoks with lascannons. The paint job consists of a red base, followed by a darker red and a wash of earthshade. This give the bloody grimy read color my client wants and is pretty easy to repeat. I followed this up with paiting the metallic bits with gun-metal and bronze both of which were given the correct wash. 

After that it's just a matter of picking out the details like eyes, furs and trophies. I also freehand some chaos symobls on the vehicles to make them stand out as defaced and to bring it all together. 

Funny thing with this landraider is prior to being turned over to me to paint my client had this for his Loyalists marines and it was painted bright read and white. My client also happens to be one of my regular opponents. In the many times I've played against that landraider it never made it through a game without exploding. (most of the time on the first turn, due to a lucky lascannon shot) I've curious to see how it fares with it's new paint job and spiky bits.

Wednesday
Jan142015

Does it smell like burning?

Terrain Making – My first personal project of the new year is to get my Bug Hunt Corridors set painted and assembled. This is a major undertaking as I backed this project pretty heavily so I have a ton of little baggies full of burned wood. I started the project putting together all 18 of the straight sections (I held back with three of them as I think I need to get some stairwell parts to make best use of my roof parts and make a complex you can use in regular games as well). 

After getting those sections all painted and washed I moved on to the interior door sections. These fit in the middle of the straight sections to separate areas and add another door. Unfortunately unlike the other room sections the creator didn't include a slot in the roof parts to accommodate the door tab. Which means you have to take them out to put the roof on. Not a big deal just a minor thing. These door sections actually pull upward instead of sliding to the side so functionally you pretty much remove them when the door opens anyway.

These followed the same paint process as the sections: Dark Grey Primer, Dark Gray Paint, Light Grey Highlights, Gunmetal grating and vents, Red and Yellow Conduit; followed by an Onyx wash.

After the wash I went in with a fluorescent green paint to fill in the lights. I was still on the fence as to if I should do edge highlighting on everything or not. If I choose to, it's going to add a bunch more work, but I feel I should do this project right from the get go since it's going to be one of my crown jewels of terrain. The nice thing is most of these will dry fit snug so I could theoretically play with them before I glue it all together.

I also began to figure out the railings. In the Aliens movie that this set is based on all the rails have black and yellow hazard markings. I was tempted to skip it as the other finished sets I've seen look fine without them. However I want this to be authentic looking and I feel those stripes really add something to each section. So I'll be painting a baggillion black and yellow stripes. (Call me crazy, youknow you want to)

With the straight sections just about done I decided the next piece I needed to work on is the entry point or Airlock if you will. There's was only one included in the set I bought so I might need to get another few to really make it work for 40k (Or design my own thing) but for now I'll make do with what I have. This part is really detailed with lots of fans and other little bits that make it stand out and a cool room. Again for paint I followed the same scheme as the other parts. This piece won't stay together on its own so I have to make my decision about the edge highlights now before I can assemble it. I didn't know that I can be that decisive at this point so let's move on.

I started opening up the roof sections to see how they go together and was happy to see that they can actually be assembled prior to painting. This is going to speed up the process for getting these done significantly. Needing to keep going before I lose momentum I busted out the wood glue and instructions to start roofing.

As with the corridors proper I opted to do all of one style before moving on to the next one. It took me a minute to decipher the instructions (Which were really well done) and sort the pieces. I used Gorilla Wood glue and applied it with a paint brush. This was a really fast process and I quickly got the straight sections assembled. This process was made all the better thanks to the wonderful burned wood smell that emanates from each piece prior to priming. (It reminds me of my grandmother's wood stove in the winter.)

Since I was on a roll I kept going and put together the roofs for the airlock, corner sections and side rooms as well. All of these are incredibly sturdy once glued together so I'm sure this will set is going to hold up well to years of use.

Once I got most of the roof section assembled I went back to the straight sections and did a quick dry brush on them to bring out the detail. I decided edge highlighting everything would take me forever and with terrain drybrushing is faster and makes more sense.