Warhammer Rescue Projects
No one would ever think Warhammer, Warhammer 40k, or any miniatures game is cheap. In fact a lot of board/table top games are pretty pricey (take a look at Fantasy Flight, Steve Jackson, or Fireside Games…they’re pretty high for what’s in the box…) but they usually don’t require maintenance or additions or new pieces. It basically comes down to how you want to spend your hobby money. Do you want to spend $500 on a new video game console, plus $60-$70 for new games to support it, or $500 on a playable starter army and $60-$70 on new units? I’ve preferred the latter recently. But it’s not always easy to shell out $69 plus shipping and taxes for a new unit. Especially when, with a little work, you can get a similar or identical unit for far less! You find them on eBay. They usually consist of damaged, incomplete, or poorly painted models. With the copious bits provided by GW with their sets (Deathwing set for example, it makes Deathwing Terminators, Deathwing Knights, or Deathwing Command squad, so you get a lot of extras) you can take a damaged model or one missing parts, add the extras, and make some nice custom pieces. I’ve found all it takes is some patience, a hobby blade, a toothbrush, and some LAs Totally Awesome cleanser and just about any model can be recovered.
Blood Angels Land Raider
This lander raider was sold as a “needs love” project. Boy was that an understatement. It was originally a chaos land raider and I considered using it as one, however the idea of deep striking one of these things with my lil Blood Angels army was too tempting.
It was a situation where you wonder who originally bought a $75 model and then didn’t seem to look at the instructions. The top hull was glued on top of the side hulls leaving awful gap clearly visible on the top. Also the side sponsons were glued on upside down.
The entire piece was so heavily glued it took over an hour with a very sharp hobby knife to get it all apart and, yes, some of it was damaged so badly it was impossible to make it look “as good as new.”
It got an overnight bath in LA’s Totally Awesome cleaner (seriously, it’s about $3 for a big bottle, soak overnight, it strips ANY paint off of metal, plastic, resin, without damaging the model. Just warm water and a toothbrush.) then reglued correctly.
After Reassembly and Priming:
I made my retail land raider in the “Crusader” variant due to its high-troop transport capacity, so I had all the “Redeemer” variant bits available. I moved the sponsons up, added some pieces of off a Baal Predator I had left over, and some various other parts from additional Space Marine vehicles. Upon reassembly I had to take some liberties and change the basics of the model. For example the sponson optics were broken and gone so I replaced them with spotlights. I wanted assault cannons rather than heavy bolters so I clipped the barrels off of two extras from my Ravenwin upgrade sprues and glued them to the heavy bolters it came with. There was a gap over the frag launchers I filled with standard poles from a Gors unit. I also had to glued the front door closed as the original hinge was glued to the hull and had to be broken to disassemble it.
Work in Progress:
As I said it was impossible to hide the damage to the model so I “hung a lantern on it” as it were. I wrote it into the story of the model, as though it’s a chapter relic and has been through serious wars, has received awful damage, but the might of the vehicle keeps it going. This was especially true on the left side of the model where the awful over-gluing left major plastic damage to the unit. You can see where I used some corrosion to make it appear as though it is battle damaged.
I used copious amounts of Typhus corrosion and some Forge World weathering powder to show the wear on the sides and the front door.
Nearly Finished Rescue Model:
There are some other little touches I’d like to add but I think it’s pretty table ready now. There are still some gaps that need filling and additional details I’d like to include but it’s worlds from where it started.
Is it the best Land Raider out there? Not by far… but for less than half price of the retail version and made with other additional parts I consider it a salvation of this vehicle’s machine spirit. It may not be perfect…but I think the priests of Mars would approve…
Check out my previous painting posts for more!
And for more 40k my Kharn illustration posts! Part 1 and Part 2. And my fond farewell to the World of Battle.