A miniatures games blog about Warhammer 40k, 15mm American Civil War (ACW), D&D, Classic Battletech, painting, terrain and anything else that rolls or shoots...

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Switching Gears

As Paul had mentioned a few days ago, we are going to be attending GASPCon XI  next weekend at Pittsburgh's beautiful and historic Best Western in the Parkway Center Mall.  For me, this is going to be a landmark event as I've never attended a large-scale convention before so I'm not totally sure what to expect.  What I do know is that nobody can host a convention like Pittsburgh, who is famous for such annual gatherings as Anthrocon:


And let's NOT forget the International Bridge Conference, an entertainment juggernaut in it's own right...

I think all those overturned water glasses speak for themselves.

It's safe to say that the bar has been set fairly high and I expect nothing but good things from my first convention experience.  In particular, I'm looking forward to the Classic Battletech 'Poker Run' event.  You can take a look at the rules here, but the basic jist of it is each person brings one 'Mech to the table, and you get playing cards by holding objectives and damaging enemy 'Mechs.  At the end of the fight, the person with the best poker hand wins the game.

I decided speed and firepower would be key and settled on a shiny new Marauder-3R to get the job done.  It has decent speed, packs a wallop with two PPC's and a low Battle Value means I'll be hitting almost everything I shoot at.

Everybody knows that a painted mini kills better and after spending entirely too much time on the Space Marine Sternguard Squad, I thought a 'Mech would be a nice change of let's get to it!

1.  I started out with a dark grey basecoat:

Stormy Grey

2.   To start bringing out detail, this was followed up by drybrushing a slightly lighter shade on top.  For those of you (like me) who don't have time to bother with mixing your own shades for this, Reaper Miniatures sells 'Triads' of three paints in varying shades.  For this 'Mech I used the Neutral Grays set.

Stormy Grey + Cloudy Grey

3.  At this point, I filled in details on the 'Mech like regimental colors, cockpit glass and gun metal.  After this was done, I lightly drybrushed on a third shade of grey.

Stormy + Cloudy + Misty Grey (seeing a pattern, here?)

4.  Now, at this point, most purists and professionals would start yammering on and on about applying washes, inks, more drybrushing, more inking, sandwich making and five more shades of grey.  Call me a cheater and heretic, but I don't have time or the patience for this for this.  Thus, I'm going to tip you off to a little gem I recently discovered called Quickshade by a company called The Army Painter.  In short, "Dipping" is a technique wherein one takes a miniature and literally dips it into a pot of watered down, inky paint-like...stuff.  With a little help from gravity, the ink then settles into the cracks and folds of the model and dries dark.  This creates a really neat shading effect that the pro's spend hours on. Suckas.


So, I dipped the 'Mech into a pot of Quickshade "Dark" Tone and let him rest.  The important thing to remember about this stuff is at needs a good 12 hours at least to dry completely.

5.  Last but not least, I based him using a no-frills technique of green paint, Elmer's Glue and some Woodland Scenics flocking.  If you are interested in the Quickshade, one thing to remember is as well as being a sweet shortcut, it's also a varnish and dries shiny.  For this, the folks at The Army Painters have created an Anti-Shine spray.  You don't need much of this at all, just a few very quick passes over the front and sides of the mini and it's done!  Note: MAKE SURE THE QUICKSHADE IS COMPLETELY DRY BEFORE APPLYING THE ANTI-SHINE. If it's not, it'll turn everything white.

6.  Go to the convention and kick some ass!


  1. So stoked for GASPcon. Added your blog to my feed reader, too.

    I still haven't even painted my starter set of 40k minis, but I'll get on that soon, so I can wage war with you and Dave.

    Here's my blog: It's supposed to cover all kinds of stupid shit, but I get lazy about posting for long swatches of time...ha.

  2. Awesome...get on that!!! Are you leaning towards Orks or SM's?

  3. Space Marines for now. Orks look too expensive, although conceptually, I think I'm more into them. Still holding out for them to fully support an Inquisition based army again...

    All three Ordos in one army would be badass.

    Reading Ravenor Omnibus right now. Have you delved into any of the 40k fiction?

  4. Nice, they were my first army as well...despite criticism from the purists, they'll always have a place in my heart. We can totally get a three-way SM death-brawl going with our armies.

    I haven't read Ravenor yet but I've read a whole bunch of their fiction, Abnett is a great author. I'm actually about 50 pages away from finishing the Eisenhorn Omnibus and it's fantastic. I can't recommend it enough! I'm going to try and review it on here when I'm all done with it.