My latest start-to-finish project is a Hot Wheels Meyers Manx. It’s actually my second Manx; the first I left pretty much stock.
Other than popping some Stan Johansen figures into it, I haven’t done much. I expect I’ll paint the figures (and seats) at some point, but I don’t expect I’ll do much beyond that. It looks fun as is, so why change anything?
The new one was a little beat up, with the roll bar missing and the windshield broken so it seemed like a great opportunity to go nuts. What better place to start than a wheel swap?
The wheels came off a Matchbox MBX 4×4 with ‘Panthera Trackers’ emblazoned across the hood. It will become a wreck. Obviously there was no way those wheels were going to fit in the original slots. Not only were the wheel wells too shallow, but I had to alter the wheelbase as well; I opted to cut new slots on the outside with a hacksaw.
This let me keep the axles intact. They nestled into place quite well, and I used some green stuff to secure them afterwards.
I also added a bit of plating to cover the windshield gap and the missing roll bar, and gave the car a matt varnish in preparation for painting. Primer followed close behind.
For crew I used a couple of Ramshackle miniatures. I’m not a huge fan of the resin he uses (it’s very brittle and I found it more awkward to work with than other resins), but apparently it’s one of the reasons he can keep his prices as low as they are, so I’ll make do. They looked pretty decent once they were painted up, especially considering how tiny they are. There’s not a lot of room in the Manx; I actually had to trim some of the dashboard off in addition to the steering wheel, just to get the driver to fit. Had to trim his steering wheel back as well.
I also added some extra exhausts to the car (they came off some weird little dollar-store-looking garbage car that I got in a thrift baggie). I almost added an oversized engine block poking through the hood before I remembered the engine is in the back. The car itself got a Vallejo Turquoise paint job (no idea why I bother, haha), and a combo of GW’s Agrax and Reikland are used for a wash layer. Looked pretty rough at that point, but I was planning to rust this one pretty heavily so it wouldn’t be a big issue in the long run.
Look at these little monsters!
This brought me to the rust/dirt portion of the project. Some matt medium mixed with my favourite Vallejo pigments, followed with some of GW’s Agrellan Earth for dirt and dust, and we’re ready to go!
And for easy comparison, here’s a before and after using a stock photo; in really happy with how this little fellow turned out. Manx II is ready to rumble!
So another couple of busy weeks gone by; what’s been happening in hobbyland? Well my one group finally got in some pathfinder (2 games), and also ordered ourselves some smallish infinity armies. My regular warhammer group got in some fun fantasy games, and we’re looking to try out infinity tomorrow evening. I’ve actually managed to get some modelling done; no painting, though. On the rare moments when I had done time, I didn’t feel like painting what’s already basecoated, and it’s been way too cold (-25 to -55 degrees Celsius with the wind chill) to spray anything outside. Definitely giving serious consideration to getting or building a spray booth in the basement for next winter, as I’ve picked up a couple fun models (my infinity squads, Skweel, some jezzails, an old rackham wolfen and so on), and I can’t get beyond building them.
And how has all this looked?
One final fun project is the addition of some space wolves to my space marines force. As I’ve mentioned in the past, the Unyielding are a lost-in-space sort of chapter, which grants some opportunity for me to throw some other chapter units into the mix. I just finished putting jump packs in some space wolves so that I can field them as Unyielding vanguard veterans. And voila!
Imperial. Get it?
I’m really liking the concept of paper terrain. After getting a friend to print a couple out at work, I decided to try having staples print a couple for me. I know that the hidden costs (cardstock, ink, etc) are what can really sneak up on a person making paper terrain, and I figure getting stuff printed would help keep those costs more visible, if not actually under control. It might cost a bit more, but at least its up front.
Turned out to be pretty decent. About 70-75 cents a page for colour laser on 100lb cardstock. It did come out awfully shiny, but them’s the breaks. I can check for matte cardstock next time. Anyway, here’s the coach house and hovel I built last night.
Hovel was a page, and the coach house was 5 pages, so after tax it was still under $5 to get it printed. Could have been under $4 if I’d opted not to base the coach house, as that was one of the pages. I’m impressed; I think they look really good, and the scale is about bang on. These two building models are free samples available through dave graffam; the ones he has for sale range from about $2-5. I wish they were a touch cheaper, but given they come with multi-layer pdfs to allow different ‘skins’, it might be conceivably worthwhile, especially if I went in on it with a friend of mine that needs some new terrain. I’ll probably buy a couple at some point, and I’ll post any I build. First I’ll likely do a second coach house, and see if I can’t use the layers to make it look a little more 40k-ish.
Finally, one other crafty project; I’m in the process of attempting to build a dreadnought drop pod. More on that later, but here’s a peek at the progress I’d made a couple nights ago….
My Master of the Forge has been sitting half-painted for ages. I used a different primer than usual to basecoat this and a few other minis, and I have fairly mixed feelings about it. It seems to pick up other colours well, so in most cases I needed fewer coats of bright colours than I do with the chaos black I otherwise use. Unfortunately, it also picked up metallics the same way, which has resulted in a *very* bold gunmetal finish on some parts. At this point I’m just desperately hoping the wash will dull that a little. A lot, really. Those exhausts are blindingly shiny.
This model has nonetheless been a lot of fun. Pretty much the only conversion/modelling work I’ve done, I used a little bit of everything to make the conversion beamer as overwhelming as possible. It’s definitely an excellent conversation starter whenever I work it into an army list. I sorta wish I’d had the money to enter two categories in the local painting and modelling contest; this would definitely have been my ‘not small’ entry. Either way, it feels good to finally have it painted up. It hasn’t seen much play of late, as I’ve been trying more fighty hq’s (most of my early army lists almost never assaulted; they were very shooty lists), but now that this is all painted up I’ll have to try working it in at some point.
I built the conversion beamer out of various bits. What I think was a chaos terminator arm, a predator’s heavy bolter, and a bunch of tau odds and ends, not entirely sure what else.
I’m hoping to field a fully painted army next time I play, so I think I’ll be attempting a vindicator very soon. I tend to be all about the heavy stuff, and I have yet to finish painting any tanks.
Fun anecdotal evidence of my love of heavy support? I recently fielded a rather ridiculous list of just under 2000 pts, consisting of a captain running with a terminator squad, a chaplain running with a squad of assault terminators, a dreadnought, and a couple of scout shotgun squads. This left room for 3 landraiders (1 of which was a crusader), and 2 vindicators (1 toting chronus, who i think is just about my favourite named space marine). I wasn’t much for capturing objectives, but it was marvelous fun, and actually worked beautifully against the forces of chaos that I was up against. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a helldrake go down so fast.