Posted by MortiS-the-Lost –
Here's a monster that will thrill you,
'Cause it doesn't try to kill you.
What a friendly little charmer ...
Hope you're fond of orange armour!
Here's my Rust Monster, a heavily converted Black Tree Design miniature. I originally purchased this miniature in 2010 as part of a bargain set of 'dungeon monsters' (that BTD dosn't seem to do any more) which I think included -among other things- the 2 Werewolves I posted a little while back, an “Evil Eye” (Beholder Kin), a “Psychic Flayer” and an Owl-bear that Cat has painted up recently. In the same order Mark RG also got a different set of monsters which contained a Shambling Mound, a Mud Elemental, Mummies and a few other creatures you might have seen him post pictures of recently. Anyway enough of this rambling, I'm supposed to be rambling about my Rust Monster.
As I've probably commented on in the past BTD miniatures tend to be a bit hit and miss when it comes to quality and their Rust Monster is not one of their better miniatures and it took a bit of work to make it into the model you see in pictures above …
Here's what the original model looks like:
^ Picture taken from a blog which in turn took it from BTD's own website (used without the permission of anyone concerned)
As you can mostly likely see it's quite a bit different from my model - to explain why I'm going to ramble about the conversion work I did … with accompanying pictures!
The first thing I did was to remove the tail-tip - and the miniature sat around for quite a while until I found something to replace it with, the piece I ended up using for the new tale-tip is in fact a rather odd looking weapon that I'd removed from a Reaper miniature. Around this time I also trimmed away the slotter-tab so that I could mount the miniature on a 30mm Warmachine style base instead of it's original cavalry base.
I think at this point I must have chucked the model back into a box because I'd forgotten about it until quite recently when I re-discovered it.
After finding the model again I filed away at the rather-too-thick feelers for quite a while, trying to get them to look thinner before giving up, assembling the model and filling the gaps with green stuff - resigned to the fact the model was probably never going to look quite how I wanted anyway. In a last ditch attempt to make the feelers look better I covered the tips in super glue and dipped them in fine sand.
^ Re-based, the tail-tip replaced and the ends of the feelers 'detailed' with sand and glue
Later I detailed the base with Green-stuff and a plastic shield and I went to bed that night resolving to paint the model up the next day ...
The next day came and looking at the model with fresh eyes I decided … it still looked pretty bad. In fact the more I looked at it, the more I disliked it - something had to be done if I was going to go through with painting it.
The sculpting of the eyes seem particularly bad to me at one point, so I drilled them away and re-sculpted them using 2 tiny Silica Gel beads to form new eyeballs and Green Stuff for the eyelids
^The base finished and the eyes re-sculpted
it was shortly after that while I was waiting for the Green Stuff to set and browsing pictures of Rust Monsters while deciding on my colour scheme between other bits of work that I decided another thing I really didn't like about the miniature was it's mouth … and the rather-too-thick feelers … in fact most of the face really.
So while I waited for a piece of art which I'd been working on for TableTop Towns to upload to DropBox, I got up from my computer, went over to the table and sawed the entire front of the rust monster's face off (wasn't that a great little insight into how exciting my days can get sometimes!).
That evening I took some stiff wire and pinned it to the remains of the creature's face to form new feelers and then used yet-more green-stuff to sculpt a beak - like that seen on the rust monsters in the black and while illustrations of the older D&D manuals
^A classic old Rust Monster illustration
^Re-working the face, the beak added and wire inserted to form the feelers
Once the green-stuff of the beak was set I bent the wire feelers into position and again used glue and sand to 'detail' the ends of the new feelers, the thought being that the glue and sand would look like some kind of corrosive substance that the feelers brush onto metal which causes it to rust. At this point I was finally able to look and the miniature and think 'hmm not bad', so I decided it was ready for painting.
^Moments before painting
Ah, painting - it look me longer to get to this stage than I had expected, but I think the model is certainly better off for it. I started, as ever, with a black undercoat over which I brushed 2 layers of Coat d' Arms Rust Brown, Over this I dry brushed a mixture of Rust Brown and Citadel Foundation Macharius Solar Orange and then pure Macharius Solar Orange followed by Citadel Hobgoblin Orange as an extreme highlight on the 'shell' and Citadel Bronzed Flesh on the softer parts. The eyes were painted P3 Cygnar Blue Highlight and highlighted with a mixture of Cygnar Blue Highlight and Citadel Ice Blue.
Over all I think it was worth the extra work and while this probably isn't one of the best miniatures in my collection, I think it certainly looks a lot better than the original miniature would have. I could have gone onto eBay and found another Rust Monster miniature (and I was tempted to) but instead I made the most of what I already had and because of that I've ended up with a unique miniature - well 'unique' until someone reading this copies it, but at £4.95 for the original model at the moment it's hardly worth it …
Here's the bonus picture:
^An armoured Knight backs carefully away
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