Saturday, May 30, 2020

Conversion Corner: True-scale Space Marine

"I, for one, was bloody glad to see the Snakes power in. Beautiful bastards, they are. I owe them my life and my soul." – after the battle of Ambold Eleven

It has been quite a while since our last conversion corner article, but with the recent announcement that a new edition of Warhammer 40k is on the horizon, complete with new Primaris Space Marines, I thought it would be fun to revisit my first primaris model. The model was actually gifted to me by Mr_Pink (from the excellent Modern Synthesist blog), and at the time, I just converted the bolter to be a little smaller and used the model to examine how it fit alongside other 40k models. To honor the new edition, I felt it was a good time to revisit the model and do some simple conversion work to make the model read as a normal, albeit better proportioned, Space Marine.

When compared to a normal Primaris marine (left), my new marine (right) has a lot of the characteristic leg details removed.

When creating this model, using the classic “beakie” helmet seemed a fitting homage back to the earliest version of the Space Marine. 

The major element of the model that needed modification was the legs. Primaris armor has a number of very distinctive design elements on the legs that needed to be removed to make the model look more like a traditional Space Marine, in particular, the little fins on the knee pads, and the circular elements along the shins. A fine hobby saw (JLC Libor Kopeček Universal Razor blade saw) was extremely helpful in removing the details on the shins, as well as the armor plates along the model’s waist. The saw took off the extra plastic in a controlled, unified fashion, reducing the need for as much sculpting later. The little fins on the knee pads were carefully carved away with a hobby knife (X-acto #11). I used Milliput to correct and smooth out any damage that was done with the saw.

In addition to modifying the marine itself, I reduced the size of the bolter and converted a smaller sidearm.

I also did some additional work on the model’s weapons. I drilled out the barrel of the bolter and inset a smaller piece of brass tubing (0.8mm), to create a floating barrel. I trimmed off the misplace magazine release and filled the area in with modeling putty. I used green stuff to sculpt a small magazine release above where his finger would be. I used a hobby saw to remove the pointing finger off another Primaris model, and fit that onto the hand holding the bolter, so that he was exhibiting proper trigger control. I created a holstered bolt pistol from a trimmed down holstered pistol from the Palanite Enforcer Patrol kit. Modeling putty was used to add additional details, like rear sights. The pistol was mounted to the model’s thigh, so I sculpted additional straps to make it into a thigh holster.

Removing the circular detail at the bottom of the Primaris legs help reduce the “stock” Primaris look of the model.

The rest of the model was quite straightforward. I selected a normal Space Marine backpack. I decided to use a beakie helmet, because I always loved the design. The head is actually from one of the Raven Guard Primaris upgrade sprues, so it fit nicely. I did do a little sculpting to make it fit better, sculpting some ribbing around his neck.

When beside a traditional Space Marine (Forge World MKIII), the distorted proportions of the old models is very clear.

It has been a long journey creating this model, from converting the gun three years ago, to coming back now to modify him to be a normal Space Marine. With more Primaris models being released, it seemed a good time to show how I think the models can be modified to make better looking traditional Space Marines. I think the model does a good job showing how a few careful modifications can really change a model. Let me know what you think!

- Adam Wier

1 comment:

  1. It never occurred to me how awful the power plates on the hips are, but now seeing yours removed (and having it pointed out) it makes so much more aesthetic sense. My favourite part is his teeny weeny pistol. Ever since starting your podcast I have really come to hate the size of bolt/plasma pistols! It's almost as if each weapon has to be a complete miniature in and of itself, instead of adding to a whole. You killed it with this guy! If only GW would take notes.