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Space Marines? ... Iron hands

Brother Argos

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Yes I was very pleased to see them ... I do however need a cog much smaller than the smallest on the photoetch ... Good news is I won a big bag of watch parts and little cogs on ebay so I should have it in time for Christmas when I will have the chance to do a lot more modelling.
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Minor update for tonight as I got in late ...

All the currently constructed marines and their weapons were undercoated black (who would have guessed) ... I just need to do the weathering work on them tomorrow night!

In addition while sitting here I started work on the next base ... I wanted to do some deck plating that wasn't tread plate .. I used squared plasticard and drilled lots of tiny holes to look like corner rivets on steel tiles. I then cut out a hole for a wiring duct and put a photoetch grill over the top. To give the feeling of depth I then cut out the same size hole on a 25mm Gw plastic base and put plastic rod under it .. to look like cables and ducting running along the bottom.

Here is a picture of the WIP ... the final version will have smaller cables coming up and resting on the decking, as though someone was working on it.


Another long day tomorrow so won't get a huge amount done sadly ... Although I just scored a huge FW order at Bitsandkits.co.uk of old heresy armour ... Very excited about that!

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Here are some pictures of tonight's work ... I only used a single light to take the pictures, should have used the 2-3 I normally used but its 1am and I am too tired to get them out.

Here is the current work on the new base ... still need to work on the rust and blood (from the wounded marine) ...


Once again I am pleased with the look of the Forgeworld Decals .. and with the shadows the bionic leg looks a little dark (needed more lights), but you can see further down its is quite bright.


The bionic leg is now not shaded and you can see the "pistons" etc that make up the Maxmini.eu bionic leg, it was too dark with just boltgun, so I added some brass and mithril silver.


In this picture if you look carefully you can see the bones protruding from the remains of the arm ... Once the figure is glued to the base, I will deal with the blood pattern on the floor.


Lastly the view from behind ... the Tactical decal felt so start I ran a dark "filter" over it and added some scratches running it down it ..


I like all the results, but this figure is pushing 5hrs now and beyond the limits of what I wanted to spend on a rank and file figure, so I need to finish it off quickly and move on.

The good news is that I have a handle on painting bionics now and should be able to do them quickly next time.

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That base is most excellent, can't wait to see it weathered.


Some superb looking Iron Hands so far, this is a cracking thread - just goes to show a change is as good as a rest!


Look forward to more :)

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Looking great, Argos - keep it up.

I think you have a really great theme going.

When it comes to bionics, I also tend to use a variety of metallic colors to give them a visual interest as well. I use silver for the piston-rod on my bionics to represent the chromed metal that real-life hydraulics have.

I like the IH icon on the backpack in the illustration below:


I had attempted to this some years ago with hand-painted icons, but the limited size made that very difficult and I abandoned the idea. Looks like the FW decals have some that are small enough to do it effortlessly now!

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@ Cyrox : Thanks ... I am also pleased with the work so far :)


@ Bannus : Actually it was a bit fiddlier than it looks for the icon on the back pack ... I had to use the shoulder decal with the hand in the cog wheel .. and then cut the cog wheel off with a scalpel before putting it into the water to soak. But I was pleased with the result ;)

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Well it was quite a good weekend :)

On Saturday morning I got the following two deliveries: -


There should be enough bits for me to make some very interesting pre-heresy armour Iron hands and plenty of Bionic parts for hands/arms :)


The brushes are for the Holidays ... luckily I am not working after the 24th ... till the 4th of January, so I wanted to get some new brushes for a good 10 days of fun during the holidays.

You might be surprised to note the size if you can make it out ... I paint with size 2 brushes, most people use size 1 or 0 ... but the important thing to note is that you paint with the "tip" of the brush and the Series 7 brushes have the finest "tips" of any brushes I have tried (sadly thats a lot of brushes). The heft of the size 2 brush fits my hand nicely and I can paint detail just as well as I can with a 000 size brush from any other brush maker.

If you haven't tried Windsor & Newton Series 7 "Miniature" brushes ... I recommend them completely, I first used one years ago when Bobby Wong and I met up in New York to do some painting together. Once I had used them I never looked back!

I also did some work on my breastplate and a new Shoulderpad ... both of which I hope to get moulded after the holidays


I need to put an "end" on the new cable I ran on the breastplate ... but thats just minor greenstuff work and should take minutes.

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I am saving up till I have a mould's worth ... I plan to get one mould for Bionics .. the other for shoulderpads and chest plates. I am hoping sometime over the holiday period!


In answer to your second question, thats an official FW IH photo etch!

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Sunday was quite a productive day ... I finished the base for my wounded marine, added the blood effects I wanted to try with Tamiya Clear Red, started work on a new marine and a new base.

First off here is the finished base / blood effects top shot: -


and a more normal shot ... but this time with some underlighting to try and bring the weathering / metallics out a little more: -


My feeling after the shot was that it was too "harsh/garish" and I need to diffuse the light source to get the effect I wanted ... we live and learn!

I thought it was about time for a small group shot to show progress ... one of the things I like seeing most in other peoples blogs is a "group shot / progress shot" ... it gives the feeling of moving forward, so here is mine: -


There is definitely a rewarding feeling to seeing the progress one has made ... that warm glow of achievement, I know a lot of people finish armies quickly, but I always make slow progress normally and this is a good pace for me.

Lastly the base for the next marine was created, the marine has the claw foot from the IH box set of bionics and I wanted to try and emphasise that. I came to the conclusion that while crossing some pipes the marine had stood on them with his claw foot and started crushing them while stepping over. I also wanted to "wrap" the claws around the pipes to emphasise the foot more.

So I started by choosing the square tiles plasticard and building the pipe work on it, I used tubes of plastic 2mm in diameter, with a strip of plasticard over the top to "bind" them together. It took a couple of wasted attempts to work out how to deform them well ...


In the end I used another set of legs, held them with snub nosed pliers and heated them with a lighter till they were "hot". The first attempt failed as they were not hot enough (trial and error), so I heated them more till I got the imprint I wanted as can be seen above.

I also cut out a panel and did the same trick as I had on the last base, but this time with a panel being unscrewed and just not returned to its original position. I was going to have to find some small screws to finish the base properly :P

Here you can see all the assembled pieces with the claw foot in place, note the claws on the marines foot had been bent to wrap around the pipes: -


Now I just needed to find some small screws!

@ ninjaturtlethug : <smiles> I paint slowly ... however this is fast for my normal work :)

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Really inspiring stuff, you helped convince me to buy the transfers from forgeworld for my neglected Iron Hands. I wish I could get my bolter cases as crisp as yours. Looking forward to seeing you go to town on your sergeant.
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Series 7, eh? I've heard lots of recommendations on them. I picked up a batch, but they went bad on me faster than any other brushes I've ever gotten, so I haven't bothered since.


Rest of the stuff is looking awesome though, great job on the blood effect.

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The Fourth Marine finished and I went and got my lamps from the loft to take some better photos ;)

Here is a group shot ... the eyes on the very first marine I did still bug me .. compare them to the left most marine and they appear "flat" .... I am going to go back and shade them as I did on the remainder. Apart from that I am very pleased with the way they are looking ... the blue lenses, rusty bases, the FW decals and the weather technique are working well together!


Here is the fourth Marine most probably in terms of painting the one I am most pleased with ... all the experiences from the previous three came together for him.


The minor bolter modification also worked nicely too .. its almost subtle, feels like it was part of the original model which is the usually a sign of success.


The weathering is possibly too subtle ... I might go back and add a little more .. especially on the legs.

Finally here are the current items for moulding, I have added a new breastplate and finished the old one with greenstuff and a small rivet. I decided to use a hex nut as a belt emblem as it felt appropriate given the company clan emblem.


With the lighting set up correctly, I got much clearer photo's, my only problem is no place to keep the lights outside of the loft ... going to have to think about that one as I definitely prefer the pictures taken with them.

@ Skoby : Come back and show me pictures of your guys with the new Decals when you do that ... it would be cool to see :)

@ Alerka : With minimal usage I get about a year per brush from Series 7 .. or pretty much any brush to be honest ... what kind of life span are you expecting ?

@ Chapter Master Ignis Domus : Thanks ... It took ages to do the blood ... I am pleased it "hit the spot"

Edit : oops ... forgot to mention ... did you notice the tiny rusty screws next to the open panel ? <grins>

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Here's what I am going to need, as I have just started the painting phase of my iron hands.


1. I need a few step by steps on how you do the blue lenses on the bolters.


2. I need a few step by steps on how you weather the black armor with the metalics.


3. I need a tutorial example on how you work those transfers. My FW should be in santa's sleigh and I am quite excited and frightened. Excited, because I want them to look as good as yours and frightened because I am scared I will ruin them.


Absolutely killer thread and figs. Keep up the good work mate!.



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@ Master Melta : If I get some time over the christmas break I *MAY* try and put some examples together

Last night I finished the next marine (apart from his purity seal I noticed while taking pics) ... working on his base tonight/tomorrow night but here are some progress pics. Sorry for the poor lighting .. once again my lights are back in the loft, however I will get them down for the holidays again :)

The Forgeworld bolter ... although a pain to paint and fiddly actually really looks good in place .. I will get more of these!


Instead of my own "steel armour" wash I made years ago ... I tried badab black and tamiya clear on the back pack .. looks a little darker but quite similar ( I think its important to always try doing things in a different way when ever you can to broaden experience and more importantly have fun)


I ran a dark filter over the tactical decal on the leg to "fade" it a little into the armour ... looking closely I think I will do it again to add more tonal variation.


The "Money Shot" ... Eye, Bionic Eye & Camera Lens ... I am really pleased with the way it all looks and also like the "bronze" skull bionics as well. Once again all items mentioned were "glossed" with tamiya clear.


Interestingly you can see some of the "Tonal" variation on the Chapter Decal ... giving it that "Was white to start with" feel .. before it met the battlefield.

No updates tomorrow ... I am out tonight with friends in the run up to Christmas :D

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@ Alerka : With minimal usage I get about a year per brush from Series 7 .. or pretty much any brush to be honest ... what kind of life span are you expecting ?

Well, my GW brushes last 3-6 months typically, even if some people insist they can last years (never happens for me). I guess I just expect brushes I spend just under $100 on to not burn out in a matter of weeks on me. ^_^


I'd love to see how you did the lenses, as well.

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@ Master Melta : If I get some time over the christmas break I *MAY* try and put some examples together




Thanks! The decals are really the harriest subject. I think I can get close with the lens and armor through a bit of T&E.


Happy Christmas and Merry New Year!

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@ Allerka : wow .. 3-6 months ??? what do you do to them?


You follow the basic paint brush rules right? ...


For those that don't know the basic paint brush rules ...


  • No paint more than halfway up the brush and NEVER to the ferrule.
  • I clean my brushes once a week (some do it daily) ... using brush soap or a drop of washing up liquid in a cup of water
  • Never apply pressure to the brush that forces it to splay (stippling) or overly bend.
  • Always reform the tip between your fingers after use (I use my lips/tounge for this).
  • Never apply powder pigments with fresh active paint brushes .. thats what old ones are for.
  • Never leave paint brushes sitting in the water (or out of it) tip down because they will deform.


@ Master Melta : Hmm decals I could do...

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