Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Loving the Kit-Bash: Word Bearers Grey Hunter Squad 3

Things work out funny sometimes, last night as I contemplated what to say when I posted photos of these new models I thought I'd talk about how much I love to kit bash. I took my photos but was too exhausted from a brutal Monday to write anything so I left it for today to do. Then this morning when I opened my Google Reader I find a blog from my oldest follower Papa JJ. In it he talks about Kit-bash & had some wonderful things to say about the models I have been working on for the 10 months. I can't tell you how flattered I was by that, so thanks to Papa JJ for making my day!

....also I'm concerned he's a psyker so I'll have to take a trip to my local Administratum office & file a report.... Sorry pal it's the law.

So on to why I love kit bash so much: Years ago when I started playing 40K one of the things I fell in love with was some of the unique things some of the great modelers could create from green stuff, kit bashing & plasticard. Guys like Dave Taylor always made my jaw drop (and still does) & I wanted so badly to be able to do what they did. Regrettably for me at the time my green stuff skills were non existent & I had yet to learn what plasticard could really be used for so that left kit-bash.

Lucky for me this was in the heyday when GW did bits orders for thier metal models.... worst thing they ever did was stopping that, at least from me they lost a fortune because of it. I would sit hours on end going through all the bits & made plenty of orders for things that I MIGHT use at some point & my Chaos bits box still is overflowing with some things that I don't believe I have. I had SO much more, lots of loyalist marine stuff that I would KILL to have back but I ebayed it a few years back when I thought I was done for good. I think all I had sold for over $600... so yeah I had one big collection of some hard to get pieces. Lucky for me there are independent guys doing the same thing on ebay with plastics, more on that later.

Anyway I'm rambling. Long story short I learned to love, love, LOVE the kit bash. It was a way I could create something cool that would make people go: "wow" (hopefully) without getting crazy with green stuff. I also dreamed one day of building an army where ever model had something unique done to it, something that would set it apart from all the others and make him a character along with all the others. I'd say I'm as close to doing that now as I ever have been.

So with all of that said on to the models, it's not like people "read" Playboy for the articles right? Why should this be any different. ;) I'm going to start with my two favorite models from this batch that I think really show off kit-bashing, Sorry the links are all messy:

I love this guy, he may be my new army wide favorite & he's just my Icon/Wolf Banner bearer for the squad. I just finished reading Dark Apostle which is the first book in the Word Bearer trilogy & one of the main characters is the Icon bearer for the Host. He was a half possessed bad ass & his icon was just as much a weapon as it was a banner, he can even throw it and it boomerangs back to him. I thought that was cool & I wanted to build a model that felt like it could kick your ass just with it's icon.

As for kit-bashing goes I used bits from 11 different kits which may be my record & another reason I love this guy so much. The only green stuff work was to fill in the Inquisition "I" in the book I snagged form the Grey Knight Terminators kit.

My second favorite is this guy above. I just love the hell out of the combination of bits & he sort of happened by accident. He just came together perfectly as if the Chaos Gods willed him to life. I love when that happens. He's not meant to be anything special, just a regular guy in the squad but I can't help be goo-goo-ga-ga over him. This guy has bits from 7 different kits.

Some of the rest:

The last two photos are of the attached Wolf Guard, normally I try and make those the coolest looking models in the squad & though I like him I think I failed miserably compared to a few of the others.

If you haven't already picked up on it I love the Scout Marine kit. It's one of of the few that I do buy the whole kit & not just a few of the bits I want online as I have no doubt I will someday use them all even if I never build a single scout.... except maybe those heads.... those are pretty horrible.

The last two photos of the possessed marine are of my Mark of Wulfen count as model. The heads from the Fantasy Chaos Knights kit, one of my other favorites for kit-bashing and another one that I just buy outright. Already planing on getting another one because I want to re-do my Thunderhoof Calvary.

Last guy up is the power weapon wielder. I'd say out of all the models he is the only one that holds any disappointment for me only because I feel that I used to much of a similar head on the Power Fist model. It's not to say I don't like either of them, I do but as I said above I like to set my leader models apart a little and I feel like both of them missed the mark a bit. I do love the pose of the sword arm though.

As for the squad as a whole I gave them the running legs to set them apart from the other squads I have done. One thing I love about Grey Hunters is that you can model them almost anyway you like which means each squad can have a look all it's own to help figure out who belongs with who. My first squad had the standing legs with bolt pistols & chain swords, the second had the standing legs with bolters & these guys I modeled running into the fray like half mad-men. At one point while reading Dark Apostle it is mentioned during a battle that the Word Bearers had placed their brothers who's worship favors Khorne slightly in front of the lines during a charge, I tried to keep that in mind while working on these guys.

One more thing before I cease my ranting: I'd like to give a shout-out to Blackdagger Games over on E-Bay. They are my favorite bit provider & I will always go their first when looking for parts. I've made 4-5 orders with them in the past year and each time it's always been a joy. I've always gotten my bits in perfect shape, for a decent price & always from Georgia to me in California in two days flat. I couldn't recommend them highly enough & since I don't think I've ever left feedback for them (which I will now) this is my way of making it up to them. So if you want to do some kit-bashing & don't want to drop a small fortune on a whole kit shoot on over there and give them some business..... they are a lot better than GW ever was at bits service even in the golden years.

Have a great week everyone!


  1. Looking great, very active! I especially like the icon bearer. The skulls on the icon might look better if repositioned a bit, to represent the motion of the direction the icon is being moved, or just hanging down if the icon is stationary relative to the figure.

  2. Amazing work on this squad! Each guy is so characterful and dynamic... perfect! I really like how aggressive this squad looks, too. My favorite of this bunch is either the second guy pictured or else the Mark of the Wulfen fellow. He looks downright nightmarish. Very well done on all of them!

    Thank you also for the discussion of kit-bashing, I was nodding in agreement the whole way through. It's so cool to be able to personalize these miniatures with just some clippers and glue. I think it's fantastic how kit-bashing can become a major aspect of what we enjoy about the hobby. Your Chaos Marines are a great example of how kit-bashing can itself be an art.

    Great work on everything, I can't wait to see more!

  3. @sonsoftaurus: Yeah I was planing on doing something with those skulls. Because of the angle of the photos you can't see it to well but the top most is actually curved up to give it the sense of some motion but the bottom one just looks meh. It's the only part of the model that bugs me.

    @PapaJJ: Thanks again man.... now if I can just get my green stuff work decent....

  4. These guys are ace. I like the Icon Bearer most, I think.

    You're so right about the kitbashing. The army of which I'm most proud was kitbashed from Empire and Vampire Counts bits; if a pure kit was used, it was treated in some way that compensated (usually with paintjobs and a bit of distressing, if it was a pure Empire kit). Every model unique in some way, even if it was just because I'd counts-ased something straight in.

    Man, I loved that army - and for some reason everything's reminding me of it today.