Apocalypse 40k: AdMech Super Heavies

The new Apocalypse Warhammer 40,000 supplement release on July 13 may have you thinking about working on some large models to bolster your forces or add some cool large centerpieces to it.

As mentioned in my article recently about my Chaos Renegade Stormblade conversion, this time I’m going to talk about my Adeptus Mechanicus themed Baneblade variants. Both models used to be on display at the former GW HQ Battle Bunker in Glen Burnie, MD. These models have generated a lot of positive feedback when I’ve shown them at local game stores so I thought I’d share them with you now as fellow 40K hobbyists might be thinking about adding to or starting 40K Apocalypse forces anew.

When I purchased these Arkurian Pattern tanks from Forge World back in the summer of 2008 I was thinking that it might be fun to paint them in a different color scheme than my regular Imperial Guard army. My concept was that since the Imperium’s forces often turn to the Mechanicus in times of dire need for additional extraordinary resources I would paint these two models as if they had been sent to the battlefront directly by the Adeptus Mechanicus to support whatever Space Marine or Imperial Guard forces might need them.

The first thing I had to do was remove the aquilas on the front of the track guards to make room for the Mechanicus badges from Forge World (now sadly out of production). I did this using a chisel point modeling knife blade because they are good for shaving detail off of flat surfaces without much damage to the surrounding areas.

I sawed the Mechanicus badges in half because they were too large to fit in one piece even on Baneblade models. I used a razor type hobby saw for this and was careful to cut right down the center line of the resin badges. Other than that I did no other conversion work to these models.

Alternating black and white on cog-and-skull badges is often used in Games Workshop’s imagery for the Adeptus Mechanicus so I relied on that theme to add some fun patterns on these tanks. The stripes on the barrel were painted freehand, which was no easy feat since the barrel is a cone rather than a cylinder. This meant that I had to taper the stripes to get them to come out evenly spaced along their entire length. I did this without measuring, just careful estimation and tweaking with the paint. I remember thinking after I’d finished that it turned out rather well, but that I’d never want to attempt that again! Stripes on flat surfaces are much, much easier and quick to do.

I used stripes as accents in several places to break up the large areas of burgundy red. I used burgundy spray paint from Krylon to get the nice even base coat and then painted everything else over that. GW’s now out of production “Red Gore” paint color was a standard burgundy color so I used that for any hand painted touch ups to match the spray paint.

Real tanks generally have a rather large conventional looking gun barrel on them and that clearly inspired models like the Shadowsword, so I especially like the Stormblade because of its large plasma blast gun. The science fantasy look of it makes it truly unique and distinctive from more realistic looking tank models. The enormous plasma cannon is pure Warhammer 40,000 and takes you away to a place and time that exists only in the imagination.

Here’s a photo of the two tanks rolling together. I have fielded these together on occasion in large Apocalypse party games at my local games shops. It’s fun to see them in their element amongst other (hopefully) painted models and scenery bringing carnage to the battlefield.

I recently finished painting a heavily converted Shadowsword for my Chaos Renegade Legion so I’ll be bringing you more Apocalyptic modeling fun in the near future.

When I painted these tanks back in 2008 I had several people suggest doing a whole army in this theme. Since I’d been searching for a scheme in which to do my own custom Space Marine chapter for almost twenty years it got me thinking, then the economically priced Space Marines in Assault On Black Reach appeared and I knew what I had to do. I finally did create my own Space Marine chapter, but that’s a hobby article (probably more than one article) for another day.

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