Sunday, 15 May 2011

Making Rivets (and a Snotling Pumpwagon)

If you’re a regular reader (or even an irregular one) you’ll have seem some of my progress on building snotling pumpwagons for my Warhammer Orcs and Goblins army.  They are now complete, fully painted and have seen admirable service on the gaming table.

These models are remarkable simply to make, but just take time completing the detailing to make them look good.  I would have liked to have added more detail to mine, but I was keen to get them onto the table to start smashing the enemy!

I made two pumpwagons, one armoured and one flying, but I’ll focus on the armoured one to show off my method of making rivets…

You will need…

  • Pin vice, with 1mm drill bit
  • Sharp knife
  • Selection of files
  • Razor saw (or junior hacksaw)
  • Side cutters
  • Plasticard
  • Model train kit
  • 1mm round styrene rod (all from your local model shop)
  • 12mm Plastic Pipe – (from local DIY shop) you only need a very small amount so you could always just roll up some plasticard to make a small tube.
  • Spare bits and bobs and the odd snotling
  • Superglue
  • Polystyrene cement (plastic glue)
As with any project like this, be careful when using tools and glues; running around the house looking for a first aid kit can seriously eat into your hobby time.

Making the Basic Shape
To save time and to ensure that I had a suitable basic shape for the pumpwagon I used a plastic locomotive kit.  My regular gaming buddy Lawrence gave me the idea after he’d used the same kit to make some horrendous warmachines for his Skaven army.  I promptly stole his idea and bought a kit from my local hobby shop for a reasonable £6 (~$10). 

I used the chassis of the kit to make the base of my armoured pumpwagon, the boiler was used for my flying pumpwagon.

The chassis was built up into a box shape using plasticard.  This was then adorned with additional panels, and various bits and bobs from my bits box to give it a much more ramshackle appearance.  I added a small length of 12mm pipe to the top to make a turret and fixed a blunderbuss onto that to strike fear into the heart of the enemy.  It works, so make sure you add one yourself.

Making Rivets
Once the basic shape was complete I added the rivets, this is a great way to improve the look of any model with a metal element.  There are a few methods on the market, including etched brass strips and individual stick on rivets, but I prefer the method I developed to use on some tank traps and then on my goblin rock lobber.

The method is simple (the photos are from making the roller, but as you'll see later the methods are the same);

1.    Mark on your plasticard where you want the rivets to go, roughly 3mm apart is good.
2.    Drill into the plastic using a 1mm drill bit in a pin vice, making holes wherever you marked.  When these are done, give the surface of the plastic a quick sand down to remove and rough bits of plastic.  

3.    Take your styrene rod, put a little polystytrene cement on the end and insert it into one of the holes you drilled.  Using a pair of side cutters, cut the plastic rod off, leaving about 5-6mm showing above the surface (don’t worry, you’ll remove the rest later).  Carry on around the rest of the model until all the holes have plastic sticking out of them.

4.    Leave this to set thoroughly.  Go and have a cup of tea or some cake.  Or both.
5.    Using your side cutters and a file, go round the model and cut and file all the rivets down until they are only 0.5 to 1mm long.  Experiment with different lengths of rivet until you find one which you like

I used the same method to make the spiky roller as well, adding styrene rod to a length of 12mm plastic pipe, but leaving the rod a little bit longer than the rivets.  The ends of the rod were covered in plasticard and the roller was then glued to the front using strips of plasticard

The snotlings were then stuck on using polystyrene cement (for the plastic figure) and superglue (for the metal figure).  At this point your shiny new pumpwagon is complete and ready for painting!


I would suggest painting the figure before adding it to a base (guess which way round I did it), as this makes it much easier.  I primed the model, then gave it a basecoat of GW Boltgun Metal, I then washed it with brown and black washes and picked out the various details and crew.  I found that the model benefitted from more and more washes and detail being added, but I eventually ran out of time and had to get it ready to hit the table!

I stuck the model to 40mm square base (the correct base size is a chariot base), in a suitably dramatic pose, added some sand and gravel and then painted it before adding some static grass to finish it off.

This was a relatively simple model to build.  The main thing to remember is to get a solid basic shape to which more detail can be added.  I hope you have a go at building your own pumpwagons, and if you do, let me know how you get on.

Happy Gaming

1 comment:

SC John said...

looks great, fine idea using the locomotive as a base.

Santa Cruz Warhammer