Thursday, August 29, 2013

A little destruction!

I mean, this blog is called Paint and Destroy. It had to happen at some point. I'm going to show you how to lay down some battle damage on a Warhammer 40k Dreadnought arm and build a sweet display base. This is a really useful technique to practice, it adds some really cool visual interest to large armored areas, and it is useful for pretty much any type of modeling you do.

So first off we are going to assemble our supplies. There are definitely more pieces that make their way into this little adventure, but this is where I started. By the way, wooden liquor bottle caps make awesome display bases. Even if you don't drink, bother your friends who do to save these bad boys for you. That piece on the left that becomes the interior detail is actually part of a Space Marine missle launcher backpack.

This shows how I cut out the panel for the damage. Pretty simple. Drill a bunch of holes, carve that shit out with your knife.
Now it gets fun. Scrape and carve the hole so it looks like a blast. It isn't shown, but I recommend carving away the interior edges as well. If I had my Dremel, I would have thinned the entire damaged panel from behind. Thinning it makes it look more realistic, and helps with fit.

Here it is starting to look like something. The next step is to trim that backpack down to just the piece I need. I'll spare you from pictures of that. I'm pretty certain you probably know how to use a razor saw. I will warn you, getting the internal piece to properly fit can be a real pain in the ass. It is going to take a lot of trimming, filing, and cursing. If I were building a whole Dread, I would have thinned the back of the interior piece with a file or sandpaper.


This next step is where things get really cool. Get out your thin wire or solder. If not, head down to Radio Shack and pick some up. I used wire here, but I have .015" gauge solder and its about the same size. During this stage I started gluing and realized my super glue had gone bad and was not curing properly, so this whole step was far more infuriating than it should have been. You should just be able to dip the wire in a drop of glue, place it where it should go, wait a minute for it to cure, then bend it into shape.

Yeah buddy!

So you know how I go on and on about trimming and fitting? This is why. Again, I'm not building the entire model, so I'm not exactly worried, but be warned. Remember to always dry fit, check your work, take your time, and prep, prep, prep!
Here we begin work on the base. Peel the paper label off the top, then scratch it up with your knife to give it some tooth. Remember how I complained about my super glue not curing properly? That is why the battle damage is all white and crusty looking. Oh well. I did realize I went a little berzerk with the razor saw and messed up those little boxes on the back of the arm. We will get to that shortly.
Here is another quick little trick in case you are unaware. Drill a little hole with the smallest bit you have, then use the tip of your blade to scrape the edges. Easy and quick bullet holes.

Buy these.

Now I have to repair the back of the arm. First I saw it off and sand it down with my Squadron sanding sticks. Buy these. They are awesome. The next step is to lay down a thin line of super glue over all the seams. I tried to show you this in the second picture. Then sand this down with your fine sanding stick or paper. Repeat, possibly several more times. Super glue works great for filling seams that putty would be overkill for. Your fingernail works best for checking if the seams are smooth.
Next we head into the stash! Find something cool, trim it down, and glue it on. Easy.

I skipped a few steps here. Find something cool for a little more visual interest. I dug through my hoard for like an hour before I found this eagle from a banner pole. I dropped something else and found this guy laying under my desk. Go figure. Glue everything down, then mix up your putty of choice and cover that base! I prefer superfine white Milliput for groundwork. I find it has a better texture for PVA glue to adhere to. Also at some point I sculpted a skull on the fist, cause you know, it is Warhammer. Cue Misfits. "WE NEED MORE SKULLS!" I use model railroad ballast for basing, and I always mix my PVA glue with water when I'm gluing it down. The glue will soak through the ballast and hold better.
Success! Prime that shit and get painting!
I haven't quite decided if I want to sculpt something on that unblemished panel, or just rough it up some, so priming will have to wait. I'm currently working on getting the figure for this base into shape as well, and he requires a little more sculpting. I'm going to leave this guy as a suprise for now.
 By the way, pick up those sanding sticks at It is an awesome hobby store with some really great hobby supplies. If you have never used Milliput, I'd definitely recommend snagging some of it up as well.

I hope you guys found this post useful. I received a request to see some skate decks, so I'll be on that soon. There will be a special guest appearance by my boy, Todd "Sharkbait" Williams, and some decks he painted up for a show.

Party on!


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