I just love these guys. The design of them blends so nicely the look of the Death Korps infantry and some of the heavy WWII era engineer armours. They look like bomb disposal miners, the awesome revolver shotguns are a clever design too. Revolvers are very simple weapons and will generally fire even when fouled with dust or mud. Perfect for an engineer. The masks are more complex and seem to indicate a night vision capability. Even the chest armour includes a mining style lamp, I decided to paint these red to indicate those low-visibility red lamps that soldiers use to avoid enemy detection.
And if the fronts were impressive, here is the back! Each of the models has their own set of equipment, it looks so much better that they have a mix of equipment to tackle engineering problems rather than a repeating generic backpack. Again the designers really thought about what to include, we've got coils of rope, a reel of telegraph wire for secure battlefield communications, picks, shovels, bolt cutters, even bangalore torpedoes (sticks of explosive to be pushed under lengths of wire or other obstacles to clear a path). Painting wise, there really isn't much to talk about aside from the normal methods that I have described before. I did add a lot more chips and dings to these guys than normal as I figure that they will pick up a lot more knocks than the regular troopers.
In the second round of special weapon painting we'll have a look at the meltaguns first. These are (as with the engineers) pretty normal in terms of painting. I added a touch of dark red to the melta-chambers on the sides of the guns to add a spot of colour. I decided to paint all the weapons a solid metal rather than giving them coloured trim. This was to help them fit with the las-weapons in the units they will be joining.
The design again shows through, the weapon slings are tricky to fit but look ace when they are done right. The bronze shield on the shoulder is the mark of the command squads, delicately engraved with a nice gothic "C".
By contrast with the meltaguns the plasma gunners were the subject of some experimentation. Normally I paint plasma coils as copper wire to indicate magnetic containment. However I saw somewhere on the net (sorry can't remember where. Post a link in the comments if you know) a method of painting plasma weapons to appear as pulsing with energy as they fire. This is my attempt at it:
The method works by highlighting up from Orkhide Shade with Skull White, the highest points on the pulses are almost pure white. It is difficult to see in the photos but the highlights fade out either side of the high point to indicate the glow spreading through the coils. A coat of gloss varnish seals the high-tech deal making the coils look like a Star Trek-esque plasma tube. Quite happy with the result (looks better in the flesh!) and it will help the guns stand out in the units. Finally this week we have the lovely heavy stubbers:
These are very, very fiddly to assemble, once together though they are really something. The hefty chunk of concrete on the base adds weight and distance to the base and makes the stubber sit at a comfortable height. The design is very reminiscent of the bren gun and the gunner has it pressed to their chest armour with a decent braced leg pose. I kept the painting simple, same method as before but as these were grenadiers they had more armour. The extra plate on the helmet was painted green to match the other ballistic armour. Kinda figured all the green areas on these models were modern-style ballistic armour whereas the khaki helmets were steel. Adding a frontal ballistic plate to the steel helmets increases the protection to the head.
The other feature of the grenadiers is the skull face gas masks. I wanted to emphasise these without making them too stark. After washing down the canvas mask as normal I went back in and highlighted the edges of the mask with a couple of layers of mix of the original canvas blend (Dheneb Stone and Catachan Green) and increasing amounts of white. This picked up the skull without changing the colour of the mask itself.
Well, that's all folks. Still plowing through the Death Korps and picking up speed! As I am in touching distance of finishing the Blood Angels 2k army there will definately be some more of them coming soon. Still agonising over whether to paint Tycho in non-metallic gold, metallic gold or my Blood Angels red. Any thoughts?