Saturday, July 26, 2014

Space Wolves Rhinos

Battle damaged decals adorn the front of one rhino
An ornate wolf mural is stenciled on the top hatch which shows heavy wear
Hand holds were added using florist's wire
Footholds show heavy wear
Battle damage punctuates the side of the rhino
The thing about bidding on ebay is that you never know with any certainty that you will win an auction. After losing several auctions you might get the temptation to start throwing bids at everything in hopes that one might stick. The problem with that is, sometimes you win everything you bid on. A while back I wanted to pick up two Space Marine Rhinos so I bidded on four, thinking I might get one or two out of the bunch. Guess what? I was the happy winner of not one, not two, but all four rhinos. I couldn't complain too much as I only paid an average of $15 each and all four were new in the box.

After receiving them they were added to the pile of models to complete, someday. I always like to add some additional details to my models so I ordered the Space Wolves Iconography set from Forge World and picked up a bunch of Space Wolves decal sheets from ebay. Someday finally came and I started work on all four.

#1 Basic Coloring

I used The Army Painter brand base and primer spray paint to base coat the rhinos in Wolf Grey.  I used the Army Painter Daemonic Yellow for some portions of two of the rhinos as well. I made stencils for all of the larger Space Wolf iconography I wanted to put on the models. I painted all of the details and used florists wire to create antena for the rear of the rhinos.

#2 Decals

Once all of the colors were painted I added various decals and tried to maintain a consistent theme. Prior to laying down the decals make sure to coat the model in a gloss finish, decals adhere better to a gloss surface.

The bottom three have their primary colors painted and are pre-weathering.

#3 Chipping

Through normal use the paint on vehicles will experience wear and tear including chipping.  There are many techniques out there to achieve this look and I've tried a few.  Currently my prefered method is the sponge technique.  This utilizes small pieces of sponge and contrasting colors of paint to achieve a worn effect. 

The foam that comes in miniature blister packs works great for this
Using small torn pieces of sponge and a pair of tweezers I lightly dab the sponge in paint, blot it on a piece of paper and then apply the foam gently to the edges and other areas of constant wear. I start with the base color of the model and go over any decals or other graphics which appear above the base color. Afterwards I go over the points of the model which would receive the most wear with a metallic color to show where the paint has been worn down to the metal.

In the above photo chipping has been added using the sponge technique.

#4 Oil Wash

The next step in the weathering process was oil wash.  Begin by spraying your models with a coat of clear gloss or semi-gloss varnish. I mixed brown, burnt umber, and black oil paints with mineral spirits (white spirits). This wash can be loaded onto your paint brush and when touched to details will wick into the creases and around details.  The exact ratio takes some trial and error but don't worry, if you over do it you can always wipe it off with a clean cotton swab.

The above rhino has received a treatment of oil washes.
For an added effect these can be added in layers and, after drying a little, can be dragged down with a dry brush to achieve a more natural weathering appearance.  After this was finished and allowed to dry a coat of matte varnish was applied to the models.

#5 Weathering Powders

Now weathering powders were applied.  I used crushed artists charcoal to create the soot effects around the exhausts and applied them with a large round brush.

Secret Weapon Miniatures weathering powders were used to apply dirt on the tank treads and around the lower edges of the rhinos. The powders were added both by dry brush and by blowing them on.  The brush gives you more control, but blowing them on gives you a more realistic look.  The powders were set with mineral spirits blown through an airbrush, and sealed with a coat of matte varnish.  DO NOT ATTEMPT TO RUN WEATHERING POWDERS THROUGH YOUR AIRBRUSH! Unless you want to clog it with mud.
A mixture of the above three powders helps to create a more natural look.
This rhino has received a coat of Secret Weapon Miniature Weathering Powders. 
Once I'm satisfied with everything I finish it off with a coat of matte varnish to seal it all in.


I used the above mentioned techniques on all four rhinos.  Doing them all together made for light work.  If you're working on one it really isn't all that much more work to do four at the same time and doing so will make it easy to maintain consistency.

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