I got the second Battlewagon in the fleet finished, and needed to make the Deffrolla (if you want the full-blown scratch-built Deffrolla tutorial, click here). I found something I thought might speed up the process a bit:
This is an assortment of styrene tubes, rods, & "girders" from Gale Force Nine. I mostly bought this as proof-of-concept - as I've mentioned before, Gale Force Nine stuff is pricey, but I wanted to get this since it includes many different sizes, and I wasn't sure which I would need. (Now that I have a better idea, I will head to my local train-oriented hobby shop and pick it up directly from the source, namely Evergreen and/or Plastruct).
To start with, I cut some of the tubes to size (I might have to pick up a cheap tubing cutter, as it would make it easier to cut these without mangling the ends):
Then I made some "sandwiches" out of foamcore, and covered them in plasticard:
I made the rolla itself the same as last time, out of a 3/4" PVC coupler & reducer, and covered the ends with plasticard:
I decided to Greenstuff the gap in the rolla this time (and yes, it was a hassle, as I anticipated):
Like before, I cut some random shapes to act as armor plates, glued them to the rolla, and added rivets punched out of plasticard:
Next, I drilled holes in the plasticard "boxes" and set about getting the angles right - once I had them figured out, I glued the pipes in place and added rivets:
Some guitar strings were used to simulate hydraulic lines:
I drilled holes in the end of the support arms, and inserted toothpicks to attach the rolla:
I used the small wooden spools as spacers - I decided they needed some rivets too, to help them blend in. I also added some toothpicks to the front:
And here it is mounted, and after the spikey bits have been added:
...at this point, the model sat on my desk for a few days while I worked on other stuff. I kept looking at it and thinking that the "spikes" needed something, but I couldn't think of what. One morning, inspiration struck: since they looked like pikes, how about some heads?
I started with these skulls from a Warhammer Fantasy Chaos Marauders kit. The skulls were originally mounted hanging from a banner pole, andthe sculpt had a metal bracket on the top of the skull (left pic) that I had to shave off & file down (right pic). I also dug into my Space Marine bits and cut some spare helmets from some sprues.
Then I just drilled through them with my pin vise:
,,,and mounted them on the spikes:
I also drilled some holes at the upper arms of the Rolla mount:
...and added these hanging-skull-on-a-chain bits:
Unfortunately, I got a little carried away with the pin vise, and accidentally drilled all the way through the arm:
...luckily, my bag 'o rivets was there to help:
...I gave the other side of the Battlewagon the same treatment.
And here's the finished product:
...overall I'm pretty pleased with the results on this one too. Did the styrene tubing speed up the process? Yeah, a bit - this one took me about three hours to build, as opposed to six hours for the first one, so it cut the time in half. It's still a pretty involved process, though. I think if I had the tubing cutter it would speed things up even more. I believe Plastruct & Evergreen also make styrene stock in rectangular shapes as well, and that would speed things up greatly - working with the foamcore and "wrapping" it in plasticard is the most time-consuming part. Lars4life tipped me off about a shop here in town that carries the full line of Plastruct products, so when I get a chance I'll head over and see what I can find...