Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Painting: 48hrs To Go Until ToS Time

Toward the end of last week I posted with plans of an action packed few days over the weekend getting stared painting my Dark Angels ready for Throne of Skulls a little over a week away. I also promised updates.

Unfortunately for the painting a friend came to stay for the weekend at short notice...nothing like being two days behind before you even start!

I got some done today so here's how it's going...

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Painting: Dark Angels ('Dualwing')

It's been a few weeks since my last post because I've been putting off the inevitable: PAINTING.

Goddammit though, I have to bite the bullet sometime.

That sometime is now. A week on Friday a few friends and I head to the GW November Throne of Skulls at Warhammer World. Last time I was there I ad a pretty sucky timebecause my 5th ed Angels Sanguine got trounced. Repeatedly. No fun. 

To mend that I'm taking an army I don't really know, it's really my play style and that I've barely practiced with. On top of that it needs painting. I essentially have five full days. (away with work, travel etc) so it's going to be a challenge for sure. Here's where things are at...

Friday, 20 September 2013

From The Chopping Board - Darkshroud Progress

I've been adding little bits and bobs to the bikers this week and finishing off the last few riders. It's not the most exciting for photo's so I'll show them when it's time to paint.

Yesterday I went back to working on the Darkshroud. I'd started working on it a few weeks ago and then put it to one side as I couldn't decide quite what to do with it.

Whole bunch of pictures after the jump...

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Ravenwing Building Progress

My work bench has been in full production mode this last week or so.

Stacks of sprues. Two trays (and a frisbee) full of various bits and parts. Bikes pulled apart by hand. Thumbs sliced apart by knife.

You get the idea.

I came to a point of indecision with the Darkshroud - I think I'm going to entirely rebuild the front turret as part of the body. I put it to one side so I can come back to it after sourcing some parts and having thought about it a lot.

In the mean time I've been doing all the tedious jobs involved with this hobby - scraping flash lines and drilling bolter barrels (two different diameter drills per barrel). You know the stuff.

Today I started on the Command Squad which will be five men with the grenade launcher and banner option built as well making 6 total. You can see where I'm up to in the top picture. Aside from that I've added a few slightly different riders to break up the standard rather static pose. Here's a couple of them for now:

This Sgt is a super simple bit swap with a head from the Drakshroud and a Grey Knight hand. I also doubled up his wing banner things on the bike to bring it in line with the Dark Vengeance Sgt.

This guy is using one of the very old Dark Angel upgrade pieces (I think from early-ish 3rd edition?).

This chap is the rider from the Heresy era jetbike which I converted into Sammael (see last post). He didn't fit the bike too well so he needed leaning right forward to reach the handlebars and is pinned at each joint.

Lastly here's one of two attack bikes. This is the old metal-plastic hybrid model and I lost the gunner and used the melta for the old converted Stormraven. The old version like this had the gun on the stand rather than the rail so I could have built it all but decided to have a little fun instead. 

Initially the gunner was going to be stepping from the sidecar but it looked like he's kneeling. Not cool. So then I thought 'why would he be not staying sat down?' well if his driver is dead leaving him a sitting duck of course.

So I killed the rider. 

Open hand from the Sang Guard kit, straight bolt pistol arm, drill holes. Job done. His other hand has been blown off but still dangles from the handlebar! I showed a few friends this on Facebook and they said I had to play it as single wound, no +1 toughness (as he's off the bike) and either no move or always difficult terrain. I said 'hahaha, no'. 

I'll be making a downed biker for one of the other squad too. I also have a couple of (hopefully) cool flamer conversions on their way too. Pics of all that soon.

See you all soon!

Monday, 26 August 2013

Dark Angels Mk.II - Ravenwing & A Little Deathwing

Table top::most of new army
Table below: so many more bits to add!
Hi All,

I'm finally getting back into the hobby swing of things here at the Grotto. After my 'quick' Deathwing project ground to a halt over the last couple of months I've finally had another couple of games.

Getting the dice back rolling is always a good boost to anything gathering dust on the work bench.

With a mixed bag of results under my belt from the Deathwing I'd built up it's time to take a step back and see what I can change with plenty of time before ToS rolls round in November.  

The gist of it is - add more bikes!

After the break check out where I'm at with a few conversions and general plans...

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

7 Weeks Away - Slow Progress

My last post was 7 weeks ago tomorrow. I've been lazy, and lacking enthusiasm.

But no longer!!

Facing up to painting up my third Marine army in a row (Blood Angels, Grey Knights then Dark Angels) sapped me of all enthusiasm.

I actually packed away everything and started to get back into drawing. It's been a nice break!

With Eldar, my first 40k amy, released last month I'm getting back toward looking forward to models again. As the picture above says, there's no point working on things you want to be good if you don't have the enthusiasm to make them so!

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Painting: Deathwing

In the two or so years I've been blogging away here on the big old internet, and across the 90-ish posts I've thrown out there, there has been ONE completed model shown on these colourless pages!

It's time for a change dear reader!

Even the picture to the left, designed to be my 'painting article' header is out of date - I've recently started using a wet pallette (how did I used to cope without one??? If you keep thinking about doing one, DO IT) and recently have been getting some practice in with my airbrush.

Anyway, onto todays project: getting the Dark Angels coloured in...

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

From The Chopping Broard - Cataphractii Deathwing Knights Build Finished

I'll keep this simple as it's past my bedtime. I'll just slap up a bunch of pictures with minimal writing...

I did little but work over Easter, apart from yesterday when I had time to finish off my Knights and start of Sammael's Jetbike. Everything is still WiP to different degrees. Knights are 90% finished apart from a little tidying up. Sammael (just Corvex at the moment) has a fairly long way to go yet...

Thursday, 28 March 2013

From The Chopping Broard - Cataphractii Deathwing Knights

Hey folks.

I'm keeping this brief today as I really, really need to go eat, but I know I won't have chance to post after food tonight or over the Easter weekend.

So, we went to Throne of Skulls. I got my arse kicked 4 out of 5 games. Kinda expected. Two losses were close (the kind I'd have won if the game hadn't ended on turn 5), two I got tabled. One I won. I had a good weekend but I'll leave it there before I start complaining to make myself feel better!

While there I (of course) bought some stuff I really didn't need from Forgeworld - Cataphractii Terminators and a Scimitar Jetbike:

The Scimitar is destined to become my own version of Samael, I have quite a bit of work planned for that model, though it'l be well after I start painting the Deathwing.

As for the fancy Terminators they're in the process of becoming my Deathwing Knights. I've not done much in the way of WiP but will do a post on how I built them another time. For now, just a quick blu-tac mock up will have to do for you. I'm THAT hungry!

Hope you like the look of them, more to come after the weekend hopefully. Happy Easter :)

Friday, 22 March 2013

Throne of Skulls - Today!

It's just gone 2:45am here in London. In 8.5 hours I'll be on the train to Warhammer World in Nottingham for March's Thrne of Skulls tournament.

Of course, the fact I'm awake means my army is definitely not as painted as I'd like it to be, but I've reached a cut off point where 'they'll do'. Last time I pulled an all nighter and couldn't actually count out dice by the time I was part way through my first social game!

So I probably shouldn't be updating the blog either oh well...

The additions to the army were a Furioso Dread, a new 'naked' Sgt, an attack bike and another Stormraven. Here's my work tonight:

Pretty much nothing in the army is 100% finished but these guys are my bare minimum level I can let myself stop at. Plenty more work on these to come.

Happy how this Furioso has turned out, despite having totally misplaced his left shin guard!

My converted Reclusiarch

Custom objective marker (also in need of paint)

Whole army, from left: Death Company with Reclusarch, Assault Squad, Assault Squad with Priest, Stormraven, Furioso, Attack Bike, Stormraven and Death Company Dread

That's all folks. I'm taking my camera so will hopefully have some photo's to post come Sunday or Monday. Bed time!

Monday, 18 March 2013

Left Handed Frag Cannon

I know, I know - not the promised painting progress. Instead of painting one thing a day I'm doing bits of everything all at once so there's not yet much to show.

What I have done inbetween layers drying/whilst watching the first Grand Prix of the season is fit my Furioso with a Frag Cannon.

His unipue pose required it to be on the wrong side though - here's how I made it work...

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Quick Update

Assault cannon bodied Sgt
Hey there.

Been a couple of weeks since I posted so here's a quick refresh.

Dark Angels are pretty much all built, just a couple of bike riders to finish off. The photo left and the ones further down this post show the (very simple) variety I've got from some of the DV miniatures.

The impending task is not finishing the DA build though, it's a brief trip back to Angels Sanguine.On Fri 22nd four of us head to Warhamer World for Throne of Skulls. Thisis likely the last time I'll run Angels Sanguine/the BA codex at this tournament, it's their third trip there and it's time for something fresh (*cough* Eldar *cough*).

I do need to get paint on them though. 6 Tac Marines, an Assault Sgt and finish off my second Raven and a Dread. I have one ay off before the 22nd - tomorrow - so I'll hopefuly be able to post this time tomorrow with some finished tabletop quality guys.

Azrael kitbash (with Ravenwing head and trimmed Deathwing watcher)
My list is:

6 Death Company (power fist, maybe an axe)
Death Company Dread (talons, hvy flamer)

Priest (jump pack)

Assault Squad x 10 (fist Sgt, melta, flamer)
Assault Squad x 5 (naked)
Tac Squad x 6 (combi-melta Sgt)

Furioso Dread (fists, hvy flamer)


In all the games I've played the troops all start on the table and pretty much get wiped out. Tournament scenery will see them die even quicker too.They o usually last long enough for the Ravens to come in though and, if they get into the enemy, they generally wipe out most things.

It's aaimed at being a fluff list over everything being optimised, though I think I'm likely in for some flak for two Ravens, we'll have to see.

By the time I got to doing the guy on the left, and realised that the standard chest piece fits this model it was too late for the other three! Still, not all identcal at least.
Beyond that I want to paint up some Malifaux some time and try and figure it out properly finally. I also have now owned my Revenant Titan for a year - time to bite the bullet and get building really! Good things are coming...

Catch you all soon!

Saturday, 23 February 2013

Deathwing Build: Belial x 3 Done

Good morning (it's just after 1am in the UK). Just a very quick post tonight as I just finished gluing a whole bunch of Terminators including all three variants of Belial.

While I don't dislike the original model of Belial (holding is sword up) I do think he's a little too static in the legs and face for that. He needs to be striding forward or shouting...anything better than silently waving his sword in the air.

I gave the static body the Thunder Hammer and Storm shield combo. For the other two I used spare matching torso, head and legs from two of the Deathwing command sets. One got he resin arms, the sword now pointing down with him looking down the blade (at his defeated foe). The other is all plastic kitbash, he just look tear someone apart.

With the rest I have 15 of 20 regular Terminators done and dusted. The Land Raider is also built. 5 more Termies, the 6 bikes and 2 attack bikes by Sunday I'm hoping...

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Cork Basing - The Beginners Guide

With 'Project Dark Angels' commencing in earnest this week during a break from work I thought I'd pop up a post about how I'm doing the bases for these guys.

All my previous (recent) models are based on gravel, sand, slate, or a combination. This works well and looks great - I just fancied a change for my next project.

At first I was going to do snow, but considering half the force is already in pale armour (Deathwing) I decided against it. Cork has been increasingly visible across various forums etc over recent months, with some really great effects coming from it. I wanted to use it to create sort of dessert or dry river bed type terrain for my bases. Here's how I went about it...

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Incoming: Dark Angels

Hey all, just a quickie.

Picked up my order from the excellent Dark Sphere here in London today, saving myself a tidy £35 thanks to their webstore discount.

I got two Deathwing boxes, one Ravenwing box and my first ever Land Raider - not bad considering I've had a marine army since early third edition.

From the bits box I have ten DV Terminators, five standard assault Termies (now with their arms pulled off) and twelve bikes (six DV) and an old attack bike. All this will give me a force, if I've planned right, which will scale from 1,500 points, through 1,750 and up to 2,000

Preliminary list is:

10 Deathwing; assault cannon, cyclone, 2 x chainfist
5 Deathwing; Sgt 2 x lightning claw, 4 thunder hammer and shield, cyclone
Land Raider (standard or crusader - magnetised)
Ravenwing Squadron; 6 bikes, melta attack bike

No idea if it's any good. I'm avoiding net lists and the like as much as possible - want to try and form my own opinions about this one - at least at first.

The two new kits look super versatile and have a good share of spare bits. There'll be a few kit bashes to make those standard termies a bit more 'DA', and also to add some variety within the duplicated DV ones.

Watch this space.

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Yet Another Deathwing Force

I'm surprised the net hasn't collapsed under the weight of Terminator armour this last week or two. Everyone and his mother has finally started work on the Dark Vengeance models and adding a smattering of the new Dark Angel releases.

The Grotto is no exception to this I'm afraid!

In the most traditional sense of bandwagon jumping, and having almost started this force at some point during each of the four codexes, I finally put (air)brush to paint last weekend.

I don't really want a new Marine army, if 'm honest, but that fact it's models/units I never currently use, an entirely different paint scheme and I have 10 DV Termies already, along with a bunch of old bikes, is about as much justification as I need.

I gave these guys a quick blast with Vallejo Radome Tan, then just quickly airbrushed a wash of brown over them. This is also a good project for me learning more techniques with this tool.

Next up is purchases. I want to run a 10 man squad of shooty, a 5 man of hitty blokes, 5 Knights and a mixed Command Squad. I though three boxes would cover this, added to the 10 DV models I will already have.

I then started thinking about all the bits in those kits, the duplicates of the standard Termie in the DV models and a couple of other things. In the end I planned it out in what can only really be described as a complicated mess:

You win 1,000 points if it is understandable to you...

Anyway, he good thing from that is that I actually only need two boxes of Deathwing. I'll probably go for a single box of the new Ravenwing in that case - I have about 6 bikes between my bit boxes so already have enough for a detachment.

Add to this order a good ol' Land Raider (will be my first EVER one) and, of course, Belial and I'll be good to go. Turn around on these needs to be pretty speedy. In future they'll mainly be used for ally detachments and Apoc Angels of Death lists.

Beyond that it's almost time for the Eldar to take centre stage in my world!

Friday, 18 January 2013

From The Chopping Board - Articulating a Dreadnought: Build Finished

Two posts below this, there's the first half of this article, so go read that first if you like (and haven't already).

Done that? Right, let's crack on...

Monday, 14 January 2013

Christmas Hobby Drought = Over


Remember this blog? No? Oh.

I've been very quiet this last month since my Dreadnought post at the start of December. In 'real life' I manage a clothes section of a department store: we had sale early, were open long know the drill. Retail work + Xmas = stress & no spare time.

Anyway, that's over now. This post was going to be part two of Dreadnought articulating, then I lost my phone, with the photos on. Going well 2013 ain't it??

So I need to back track what I can of that, though the model is now base coated so could be tricky. Here's what I have managed, mainly in the last week:

  • Furioso Dreadnought conversion finished, base coated.
  • Stormraven #3 converted and base coated.
  • 6 Tac Marines kit bashed and base coated

These three things above should mean my army for Throne of Skulls in March is actually going to be on on time - miracle of miracles!

I also: 

  • Watched 4 seasons of Sons of Anarchy in 3 days - I now want to be a biker.
  • Spent too much money on the Kingdom Death and Imbrian Art kickstarters - both examples of some really beautiful models I'll be receiving over the course of the year, looking forward greatly to both.
  • Am eagerly awaiting delivery of Sedition Wars in the next couple of days (shipped today) - YEEAAAHHH!!!
  • Played a crazy Apoc game: 3,000 points per side + as many super heavies, flyers and gargants  we had to hand. I'm going to try and get some pics of this, but aside from the 7,000 points of 'normal' stuff we had 1 Gargant, 12 flyers and 8 or 9 Baneblade equivalent tanks. It was messy.

I also reached that point where I realised I need to sell some stuff - I have ~£125 worth of Dark Eldar sitting unused, and about 1,750 points of Orks that have never seen paint. eBay beckons them, then the money will be saved to wait for (hopefully) an Eldar release later in the year. It's very tempting to paint the Orks as they're almost entirely built. We'll see.

So, there you go. Expect normal (irregular) posting to resume over the next week or so when I can get some decent pics to try and show what I did with the Dread. In the mean time, hope you all had a bloody good Christmas and a happy New Year! Here's to 2013 :)