Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Showcase; Imperial Knight Errant, Winter Effects Weathering

Hi All

Bluddtoof here, finally I've got round to finishing off the weathering on my Freeblade Knight Errant. It's only taken me 2 years!
So I was really quite nervous about this little project; the knight is probably my best work to date, I was very concerned I'd mess up the finish with poorly done weathering, I'm not experienced at all with weathering.
I'd done quite a bit of research on different methods and materials over the last year or so, a lot of advice came from my code40k colleagues, a big shout out to the boys for the help!
I bought a winter effects kit a while back that has quite good instructions included, Scene- A-Rama is the brand, and I experimented a bit with the various materials with mixed results.
The "snow base" liquid makes an excellent base layer for applying snow in the form of flock or powder, the snow powder in the kit is made of crystals of varying sizes all mixed up, I used it in conjunction with GW snow flock and Bicarb, applied in different layers for the final finish. This came after a great deal of playing around. Some of it I then coated in the "Ice Effects" liquid, a thickish clear resin that sets real quick.
All of this worked ok and was pretty easy after I'd worked out the method.
The tricky bit was Icicles, I knew I wanted the knight to be crusted with icicles hanging from the shoulder guards and carapace to simulate it having stood sentry for ages in sub zero temperatures and now just awoken to the call to arms. The kit has instructions to use the ice resin to make icicles...... it doesn't work, I tried and tried and tried, the resin just spreads and makes an icicle shaped flat sheet.... no good for the application I wanted..... so.... Luko Dakka delivered the solution with a quick explanation of how he used melted flying stems.....some practice later..... and Icicles I'm really pleased with! Hurrah! A word of warning tho if you try the melting plastic method...open a window and wear a face mask, nasty fumes.
In case you've not tried it here's my method I used....
Over a tea candle, hold a flying stem at both ends with a pair of needle nosed pliers in each hand. Hold the stem about 10-20mm above the flame, too close and it will scorch and even ignite...that was an interesting minute or so! Too high and you'll be waiting a LONG time. Keep a close eye on the surface of the plastic, it will start to develop fine striations and very shortly it will sag visibly.. Immediately apply a little tension and REMOVE from the heat, keep the gentle tension applied and the stem should quickly stretch very thin, keep pulling gently and the plastic should keep stretching with the thick end bits slowly feeding into the thin middle bit, you'll feel the resistance increase gradually, keep applying gentle tension until it won't stretch any more. You should now be able to let go and you'll have a long piece of plastic with a really thin middle section flaring out at both ends to fat bits. Chop this in the middle and cut/shape the fat ends to create the bit that connects to the surface the icicle will hang from, 2 icicles from 1 bit. You can then go on to do the same with the chopped of ends too if they're big enough.
This took me a few attempts to get right, it's very much a matter of FEEL with each piece, if you pull too fast it'll snap and then curl up.....ruined! Pull too little it'll just sag, too long over the heat...sag, burn, mess! Thankfully clear plastic flyer stems are cheap and plentiful, you generally get extras with any skimmer model.
One thing I did find tho was that once you've melted a piece and let it set again it doesn't melt cleanly ever again, I'm sure a chemist could explain it!

Anyhoo, enough blather! Piccies....

As you can see I haven't applied a huge amout of snow on it, I didn't want to obscure the paint job too much but I wanted it to look like it had recently had snow fall which has been dislodged as it starts to move.
Hope you like it, I do, I'm very pleased with the finish and I'm looking forward to rest of my Knights and trying different winter effects methods on them.
As ever C&C welcome....