Warmachine, Warhammer 40k, & Terrain Projects

Modeling & Painting

Assembling a Blood Angels Assault Squad



Warmacine & Warhammer Metallics

Warmachine Cygnar Precursor Knights with reaper Metallics and a Citadel black wash next to some Grey Knight space marines painted with raw, unwashed Testors stainless steel metalizer and some citadel dwarf bronze details also washed in citadel black wash.

Testors Metalizer on Games Workshop Grey Knights Space Marines

I gave Testors ‘stainless steel’ metalizer enamel paint a try this past week. Overall I’m very happy with the results. You can see a ‘metalized’ squad of grey nights next to some space marines painted with Createx Wicked airbrush paints. Obviously these are all just basecoated, so I have yet to see how acrylics will layer on top of the metallic, how the finish will look if/when I seal with Acrylic varnish, and how durable the metalizer colors will be in practice.

The metalizer sprays were a dream to shoot in my Iwata Hi-Line brush.


On thing that I learned was to be conservative with how much to ‘buff’ the metalized paints. I was a bit too aggressive and buffed out some of the metallic shine on the shoulder pads on some of these guys.


I’m so enamored with these enamels and metalizers in general that I ordered some ‘Alclad II’ chrome paint. I will, as usual, post the results once I have given the Alclad paints a whirl.

37 Bases

Glued sand down to 37 Cygnar tonight… tomorrow night will be painting sand!! w00t!

Varnishing a Cygnar Army with Liquitex Gloss & Matte Varnish

As I need to varnish/seal an entire cygnar army… I’m trying various finishing techniques and I think I’ve found the best. I applied un-thinned liquitex gloss varnish first, and you can see the very glossy finish on the hunters in the picture to the right.

After waiting the recommended three hours between coats, I applied the matte varnish with the airbrush, and was impressed with the ability to control (roughly) where I wanted to dull down the varnish. In the picture below you can see where I sprayed the matte varnish to the blue armor area and left the metallic smoke stack glossy to preserve the metallic sheen.

The varnish feels very durable, handling the mini feels like a harder/more durable surface than the ‘raw’ acrylics, without being really apparent when looking. It also feels like there was never even a remote risk of frosting like with the aerosol cans.


Varnish Frosting!!!

I sealed 15 miniatures yesterday with Games Workshop Purity Seal. While it went on clear, after about 20 minutes I got moderate frosting. You can see it clearly on the bases between the two bodgers. Fortunately,the figures I painted look OK a bit ‘dusty’ but this would be unacceptable on my entire army!

After some research I made two mistakes.

  1. Sprayed aerosol varnish in high humidity and low temperature: Last night we had 80% humidity and high 50’s / low 60’s temperature in the garage. After reading through the application pages on Golden & Liquitex varnishes, they don’t recommend applying varnish below 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Sprayed all figures at once: With aerosol cans, if you ‘spray longer’ the can/spray cools down rapidly. That will have lowered the temperature even more, lowering the dew point and allowing water vapor to form in the varnish and create the frost.

I plan on picking up some some Krylon satin varnish (aerosol) and some golden/liquitex matte/satin/gloss varnish (air brush) and experimenting (given that temp/humidity is decent)


I applied a single coat of Krylon UV-Resistant Clear Matte Acrylic Coating over the frosted Games Workshop Purity Seal and it ‘erased’ the frosting experienced with the purity seal. While I can’t vouch for the durability of the krylon matte acrylic coating, it didn’t frost. Temp in the garage is roughly 65 degrees Fahrenheit and 67% relative humidity. Below the Bodger on the left has one coat of ‘frosted’ purity seal and one coat of the Krylon coating. The Bodger on the right has no varnish or finish of any kind. I think the more reddish hue of the bodger on the left was proably just a stronger Reaper ‘flesh’ wash and has nothing to do with the finish.

Airbrush base color and highlights

New Painting Station

One of the things I love about this hobby is that I can be in the same room with my wife while doing it… Unlike video games or some of my other hobbies. One of my traits is I never do a hobby half ass… So I had TONS of crap (paints, glues, books, tools, etc) allover our kitchen table. It was bugging me so I moved it all up to the computer room. Kitchen was clean again, but painting was… Lonely. So… I put together this painting station yesterday… Still messy, but it’s contained, can roll out of the way, and keeps the kitchen table clear when I’m not actually painting.

Warhammer 40k airbrushing done


Artograph 1520 spray booth

Stormraven Gunship

Painting light comparison

I recently purchased a light recommended by the studio painters at privateer press (LSF 150). It came with 2 unknown 15 watt 18″ T8 bulbs with a stated color rendering index (CRI) of 80. I picked up some GE ‘sunlight bulbs’ with a CRI of 90. The iPhone camera couldn’t deal with direct pics of the bulbs, but could handle the reflection (in this case, a granite countertop). The ‘warmer/yellower’ light on the left is the new GE bulb vs. the greener default light on the right.

Airbrush painting station

Airbrush Painting Safety

This is a 3M respirator. After about two hours of painting with red paint, the INNER FILTER had a red stain on the outer side, fortunately the inside looked clean.

This is pretty strong evidence that spraying without a respirator is a horrible idea. It’s also convinced me to pick up a vented spray booth when I have a chance.

Jump pack painting rack

I had previously built a ‘spraying rack’ to get the first rhino I built up off the bottom of my ghetto card board airbrush booth. It looks kinda’ impossible to paint the shoulder pads of the marines with the jump packs on, so for now I’m going to paint them separately… to make that easier and to ensure that I get the airbrush highlight angle correct, I added on to my airbrush paint sprue framework. The jump packs themselves are attached to the sprues with poster-tack, so should be easy to remove them once they have the base coat and highlight coat in place.

Primer Comparison on Warmachine Trenchers

Primer Comparison on miniatures

Trying out four major brands of primer on Warmachine trenchers

I ran out of the same pose so the armory primer is on a different pose. I was applied using the same technique, just minutes apart. The armory finish was very dull and obscured more detail than the other three. It was different enough that I painted a second model after shaking the can for an extra few minutes to ensure it wasn’t a paint temperature/mix issue.

While I’ve since purchased a airbrush and basecoat my models with ‘Creatix Wicked Detail Color,’ if/when I use spray paint, I’d recommend Rustoleum Universal, GW, & Board to Pieces equally, and I would advise against Armory.