Category Archives: Works In Progress

Robotech Tactics: Building the Destroid Tomahawk Model

This evening I sat down with my new Robotech Tactics game and had a go at building one of the models. I selected the Destroid Tomahawk model, because this mecha has always been one of my favorite designs. I also wanted to carry it to the game store tomorrow to have something to show my friends, and this is a familiar design to many people.

To start off, there’s a lot more parts to these minis than is strictly necessary. The Kickstarter comment section had a lot of backdraft blowing through it, and I understand the bitching about seams and mold lines caused some of the delays as the Ninja Division people did their level best to eliminate them as much as possible. Of course this meant more parts. Honestly, I would have rather spent a few moments using the edge of my Exact-O than deal with the extra headache of small, fiddly bits, but nobody asked me and I didn’t want to get involved in the silliness of the discussion.

So here is the picture of the parts freshly clipped from the sprue:

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I didn’t really look at the instructions, but there isn’t much in the way of instructions to begin with. This is probably my prime complaint here, but I’ll get to that in a minute. Below is the torso of the Tomahawk. I knocked it out in maybe five minutes. For this I’m using nothing but an old Exact-O and a mostly used tube of Loctite Super Glue Gel. I wanted to prove that it was easy, mostly, because there’s been a lot of angst circling this game and everything about it, so this is, “here, I did this with what most people could find in a kitchen junk drawer.”

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The problem I have with the instructions is two-fold: they are vague, and the parts aren’t numbered. The vagueness first hit when I first looked at the missile bits for the torso. I had to do a double-take and actually look at the instructions, but it didn’t take me long to figure out that there are two styles, two of each. So you’re either going to have one mecha with both hatches open and another with both hatches closed, or you can have one and one of each. A very minor complaint: I would have preferred to have the option for both styles on both Tomahawks on the sprue. Really, though, for someone who has done this sort of hobby modeling for a while, the closed hatch at least would be easy to just make out of putty, and the smaller hatch-open pieces would be easy to self cast, if you really wanted to have two with both hatches open.

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Like the torso missiles, the particle cannons have two different pose styles. The instructions show the arms as being two pieces with the cannon able to swivel, but apparently that was victim to one of the many mold changes. Not a big deal.

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The legs and feet is where things go wonky. When they repackage these for general sale I sincerely hope that they include better instructions regarding this train wreck. Numbered parts here would be a great help. There are four different feet styles, and two sets of legs, and I didn’t know how they were supposed to match up. Figuring that part out took about as long as the rest of the assembly steps altogether. Maybe if I had paid closer attention when I was clipping parts, but I didn’t just clip bits helter-skelter, either. I wasn’t sure even when they were on the sprues which ones I should cut off or what the difference between them was. It took me until the dry-fitting to fully realize the extent to which the feet were different from one another:

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There was a lot of guess work involved at this stage. I came up with what I thought was the best arrangement and took a photo:

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Honestly, though, I’m certain that in between swearing and gluing my fingers to everything the above arrangement was probably modified. But I got through it, and managed to get the damn thing posed and glued together:

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I was going for the pose from the Loose drawing out of the old Battletech Technical Field Manual 3025:

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I couldn’t get the legs the way I wanted. I’m not sure it’s possible, but maybe it is. The hip joints are the weakest part of the design, and the most aggravating part of the actual assembly process. I think even if it were absolutely clear which leg matches which foot, gluing the legs to the hips would still be maddening. I’m not even positive the torso isn’t going to fall off or rotate forward or back by the time I wake up tomorrow. I guess I’ll update this if it goes sideways any time soon, but I think that sooner or later I may have to re-glue the legs to the hips.

There’s a few mold lines I want to scrape off that I skipped when I was putting it together, but I want to wait until the glue is dry and I’m ready to paint. I’ll do another one of these blogs when I’m doing the paint, maybe next Friday. I have a 40k figure I need to paint for a competition, so I’ll probably do them on the same day. I also need to buy some good primer. I think the spray paint I normally use would probably be too thick for the details of these.

So that’s that. I will do one of the Veritechs (all three poses) at some point, hopefully soon. When I get enough of the models done I’ll maybe play a small skirmish with a friend and do a battle report and review of the rules.

Reviresco!

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Filed under Hobby, Modeling & Painting, Reviews & Reports, Right Living, Works In Progress

200th Post & Some WIP 40k Painting & Modeling

This is my 200th post on RA, so of course it has to be a self referential reflection.

Here’s the stats for RA so far:

I started in August of 2009, went through several site reorgs, spiked in July 2010 when I was blogging from Cambridge in England, then climbed back up to those levels after I accumulated enough hobby posts to interest random people from the internet and now I’m sitting at 600+, which was where my Cambridge journals spiked in 2010.

My post about what’s inside the Battletech 25th Anniversary box is a popular search. Less so but still a regular search is my unboxing of the 4th Edition D&D Essentials “Red Box”. And for whatever odd reason a lot of people search for “home made camper” and wind up reading about when I went to the 10th Annual Greaserama Car Show. My 40k modeling and painting posts drive most of my non-subscribed traffic, and following on that are people looking for posts about Asatru/Heathen holidays. Today somebody came here after searching for “fat sensei”, and I’m still puzzling that one out. My kendo and iaido posts, as sadly as infrequent as they’ve become (due to my busted knee and busy school schedule) pull in regular traffic too, but much less so than my hobby posts.

This isn’t a terribly busy website, as far as blogs go. There are folks who get 600 hits in an hour, probably, but I don’t care. It’s not about that for me, but it does indicate a healthy amount of activity and at least some levels of usefulness. This is a vanity page for the most part, an online journal and blog of my own activities, but here and there people do find it worth looking at, so that’s good. It also gives me something to do, and a soapbox, however small, for certain varied opinions of mine.

Enough of that mess, here’s some Warhammer 40k models I’m currently working on:

So last night was Halloween, and anybody following this shouldn’t be surprised when I say that the Iron Hounds are a Halloween inspired warband. It’s my favorite holiday and I really dig orange/black, so why not? I thought it appropriate to kill some time today to work on my Chaos Sorcerer before the son came over to help me carve pumpkins and hand out candy. His paint scheme is more in line with what my very first scheme for these guys was, which is orange all over with black trim instead of the quartered scheme. I decided to make him different since he’s a unique and important part of the warband.

Astute observers may also have noticed that my character names have all been directly taken from or inspired by by-names for Odin from the sagas. This fellow’s name is Forn Grimnir, which means “Old Masked One”. I named him so because 1. he is the original corrupter of the Iron Hounds mentioned in my IA; 2. he sometimes recruits by traveling through Imperial space masquerading as a Loyalist Librarian; 3. he’s a generally mean, sneaky, treacherous old man.

Here he is with a base coat and initial wash:

The Bolt Pistol is magnetized and was painted for a different model, so it’s just there as a prop right now. I really like the horn he wears on his hip, which comes from a Space Wolves sprue like his head (which I’ve trimmed the braids off his beard):

His Force Scythe is from a WHFB Vampire Counts Zombie Regiment box. It was originally going to be a spear, but I saw the scythe and thought that was just too cool not to use. I use the heck out of WHFB bits in conversions:

The trim is going to be black on the chest piece, the skull on his right knee will also be black as well as the trim around the jump pack intakes and the decorative Iron Halo he’s got. Why a jump pack instead of wings, you ask? Because I thought it would fit in with the Iron Hounds better that way, and the “Storm Crows” Raptor squad was conceived of as a retinue for him so I didn’t reckon he would need to be able to fit into a transport.

I’m probably going to field him along with his protege (Brynhild the Jealous, my Fallen Sister of Battle Aspiring Sorceress from earlier in this thread) against my friend’s Grey Knights. I’d like to give him a taste of his own medicine with his ridiculous psyker attacks every round. He’s got a psyker enclave that can generate a high strength AP1 psychic attack every round. Very nasty. Let’s see how he likes one of them turning into a Spawn and eating his mates.

Now I gotta fiddle me up a Spawn…

And speaking of Halloween, here is a photo of me and my son posing with out Jack-O-Lanterns from last night:

As an Asatruar/Heathen I celebrate Halloween as a part of, or at least hand in hand with, Heathen Winternights. I’ll be attending an actual Winternights celebration next week (postponed from this past weekend) with some “free holding” Heathens. I was to attend another Winternights with my friends in Tyr’s Helm Tribe two weeks ago, but an acute case of gastroenteritis kept me home all weekend. Nasty stuff, but I’m over it now. Except for the paying for it part. Life is hard when you’ve no insurance sometimes. But anyway, my personal Halloween tradition is to carve my three Jack-O-Lanterns the day of Halloween as the sun is going down. They sit on my porch all night guarding the homestead from baneful wights, and in the morning (or when I wake up) they get a shot of liquor and a journey to the spirit realms via hatchet execution. One of my Jack-O-Lanterns is always the traditional “triangle eyes” type, and another more religiously motivated (that’s supposed to be Odin with the one eye there), and the third carved by whatever whim moves the family member assisting me. Often Ma carves with me, but the children have come over in the past, as my son did this year.

Moving right along…

Sitting around fiddling with some parts the other day I went ahead and started modeling my Noise Marine cult squad. I figure that their Aspiring Champion is a good start for tonight, because I’m tired and don’t feel like doing a bunch of drilling and whatnot for their sonic weaponry options.

So anyway, here is Anton Valentine, leader of an as-yet-unnamed squad of Noise Marines employed as auxiliaries by the Iron Hounds:

A pretty straight forward conversion, he’s mostly CSM with a WHFB Beastman head and, just for giggles, a SM chest plate with an Aquila on it as an allusion to the Emperor’s Children:

I gave him the option of mounting a Doom Siren, but fixed him with a Power Sword. The magnet on the base there is for a Melta Bomb if I decide to give him one while making a list:

And that’s that.

The Iron Hounds are almost completely modeled so far as my squads go. I want to make a couple of Apocalypse formations from Space Marine datasheets to represent their well funded flexibility, but the core warband is pretty much able to be fielded as is (minus paint). And it’s only been over a year and a half since I started on them. And a new codex is rumored on the horizon.

Ah well.

Reviresco!

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Filed under Faith, Family, Hobby, Modeling & Painting, Personal Reflection, Right Living, The Heathen Gods, Works In Progress