by Confrontation (Rackham)
Convertion Report Part 2-3

Painting Report Part ?-? >>

Ok the guy was swinging a sword and an axe originally, but this was going to be a shaman. And what's a shaman without a magic rod or staff, right, just another weird looking nut! So bye bye axe and hello wand/rod/staff...whatever. I took my saw and sawed the blade of the axe clean of, giving it a nice place in my bits box, 'cos it's a nice axe, let's be honest! After a little browsing in my fantasy art collection and looking through some old citadel catalogues I remembered making a wand before out of a claw of a GW deamonette. It looks like a big claw of a crab. I decided it had to look similar.

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Click the thumbnail for a larger view!

Click the thumbnail for a larger view!

Click the thumbnail for a larger view!

S t a f f - T o p P a r t - I made the left part out of plasiccard. Just drew the form onto the plastic, roughly cut it out, filed and sanded it and polished it with 800-1200 grit sandpaper and a bit of water. This was the left part of the claw and would be a runic blade (I was anxious to try the 'confrontation' method of painting metal, using different shades of gray!) the right part would be a horn of some sort, with great magical powers...."oeoeooeoeohhh" LOL. (I did the horn the same way as the extra horns on the skull) Both items would draw magic energies which would be released through a crystal ball (a small marble) between the two.

I drilled a hole into his right fist, where the staff would come out. I then cut off approximately 5 cm of brass wire and bend the top 5 mm slightly to the right. I drilled a little hole into the thicker part of the horn and glued it on with a little super glue. After that I took the plasticard blade and a file, and filed the side I would glue onto the brass wire a little hollow, for better grip, and glued them together.

Ok I had a piece of brass wire now, with in a V-shape a curved blade and a curly horn. I took some greenstuff and added the texture of the wooden staff, making it look like the wood bended a little to the right with at the end the horn. It had to be as if the blade was added to that branch, so I also made a strip of 'metal' out of greenstuff and pushed small pieces of plastic rod (0,8mm in diameter) into the greenstuff to resemble metal nails/rivets. (see thumbs for visualisation!!) I let the greenstuff dry for about 10 minutes and then I took my dental tools again and finished the wood texture and smoothed the metal piece which 'held the blade in place'. (If you keep sculpting greenstuff it tends to stick to everything, and the overall effect will be rough, almost as if it contained fibers/small hairs of some kind. If you let the stuff dry a little and wetten your tools or use vasaline you can sculpt more easily and get a 'cleaner' look!!)

When all that was really hard I sculpted the rag that sits around the horn, and wettened the little marble, pushing and turning it in the bottom of the V-shape, making sure it would not stick to the greenstuff , and making a good and solid place to glue the marble onto, when the greenstuff would be dry. After 10min I smoothed and added some detail to the rag around the horn, and when everything was really hard I glued the marble into place.

S t a f f - B o t t o m P a r t - Like the top part I drilled a little hole into the remaining part of the staff so I could glue a piece of brass wire into it. This part of the staff would be fitted with a blade, so the wand could be used to fend off any opponents in a non-magical way. This blade I made from a strip of plasticard (what else! LOL). I filed and sanded the strip till I has the desired shape (gave the blade 2 edges and made a point on one end, your basic sword shape!), made sure it wat really sharp and smooth (polished it with sandpaper in the final stage with gritt 1000) clipped it to lenght, drilled a hole in the end (NO NOT THE POINTY SIDE!!) of it and glued it onto the piece of brass wire sticking out of the bottom end of my wand. When the glue was dry I took some greenstuff and made a 2mm wide strip out of it, and wrapped it around the section where the blade and staff joined, representing a piece of cloth. After applying a little vasaline onto my sculpting tool I remodelled the cloth a little, smoothening it a bit and made sure no brass wire remained visable.


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Click the thumbnail for a larger view!

T o r s o - Well like mentioned before, the torso has 4 holes by this time, one at both points where the arms would go, one at the top for the head and one for the leg part. The only thing left was to remove a mold line or two, and sanding it a little. Time to move on to the legs!

L e g Pa r t - Like weapons, I (allmost) always sharpen fangs or claws etc. so they, like the blades, look mean and sharp. Equiped with file, knife and sandpaper I played pedicure for a few minutes, and after that I took care of some mold lines. Next thing I did is something strange for some people, I (especially with larger models) often drill a 1.5mm hole into one of the legs/paws of a model and use a litle M2 screw and scew it in. Back and forth, I force the bolt in, cutting thread as I go. Remove the metal from the screw during this procedure that is forced away and in a few seconds you tapped thread without using expensive equipment (this is only possible because the metal used to make our models is very soft!) The reason for doing this is that you now have a hole you can tightly screw a screw into and this screw you can hold with a pair of automatically locking pliers (or something else, you can make a little wooden tool with a piece of M2 thread at the top. You can rotate your mini onto this tool!), giving you different angles to hold the mini without having to thouch the mini and when finished you can fasten the mini onto a base with a screw instead of simply glueing it on. Also during the converting stage you can screw the mini onto the base, looking for a good position (especially handy with dioramas with more than 1 mini, when position is even more important!), without having to use any glue and so you can still paint base and mini seperately but you can think and adjust the pose of the mini till you find the right one!

This works all quite nice, at this stage I had the base more or less completed, except for the arrows, they are to fragile to put on now. The base is made of something I came across by accident, it's a piece of wood that is used to function as the end of a table leg. In probably your local DIY shop you can find steel pipe (+/- 10 cm diameter) that is used as a table leg and at the floor end you can fill these with wooden 'thingies(?)'. When sanded, the round bit that would go up into the pipe is sawn off, and repainted, it looks like pic 14 without the rubble :) After a few coats of paint I started adding some plastic bits that I got from an old GW sprue and started adding very fine sand (use superglue only for this job, PVA also works, but it tends to fill up the space between sandgrains. When you use superglue it will look like the sand is just thrown onto the base, and this will make you're base, when painted, so much better!!) I screwed the leg part onto the base and with a marker marked the spots that needed more sand to make sure the mini wouldn't look as if it were flying. It stands in a firm position, so it has to stadn solidly into the sand, so after scewing and unscrewing the leg part a few times, and adding sand, the leg part stood perfectly onto the base.

After this it was time for the rubble, little stones, the skeleton, the sand (I used the very fine stuff in the first stage. I use 3 different sizes, so I had 2 more left. Don't use the bigger stuf everywhere, use it in the lower places, where it would roll to if it was real, and leave some area's covert only with the fine stuff, creating different surfaces!)