Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Magnetizing the Plastic Contemptor

(or why I must have options!)

I am slowly working my way through the Betrayal at Calth boxed set, as each of the sprues have an excellent set of options.  To take a break from building Mk4 bodies, I decided to work on the plastic Contemptor Dreadnought that is in the set.

   The Contemptor comes with a Kheres assault cannon, a Multi-melta and a power fist, but the weapons are molded into the shoulder assembly (probably for quick building) unlike the resin Contemptor weapons kits.  You know that I like options, especially with my dreads, so off to magnetizing the kit!

   Obviously the first step is to remove the weapons from their shoulder assemblies.

  I had already built the assault cannon arm, to see how they were "intended" to be used and to get some posing ideas.  If you make the cuts through the arm linkage before you assemble each one, it is far easier with less likelihood of overcuts or accidentally removing detail. A little bit of sanding on the upper shoulder mount and any one of the weapons will sit there (fairly) interchangeably.  Obviously if you are gluing the shoulder pads in place, as I am, you will be stuck with a much less dynamic pose for the power fist-equipped arm.  I'm fine with that as I need the ability to swap out weapons instead of building a dynamic pose to this miniature.  

   Once you have removed each of the weapons, you can assemble them, realizing that the shoulders will go together simply, but you will have to align each of the two-part ranged weapons carefully as they relied on the shoulders to mate them easily. The power fist still has attachment pins that make gluing it together pretty easy, but you will have to pin the outer fist ring to make it "reversible" for left and right-handed use.  Magnets can be placed easily in the recesses from the now separate shoulders and arms.  In hindsight, I would recommend using the two shoulder pads from the ranged weapons as the power fist is hollow at its core and required a bit of sprue to be added to hold the shoulder magnet for attaching the arms.

The image below shows what the assault cannon arm looks like when it is cut through, showing the lip for attaching a magnet.
So if you haven't assembled either ranged weapon, USE THEM FOR THE SHOULDERS!! 

Making the power fist "reversible" was as simple as drilling and fitting the pins.  Since the power fist assembly is hollow, you can make the pins a bit longer than usual.  In my case, I didn't fit the pins perfectly, but it worked out in the end as it give a bit of friction to hold the outer fist ring in place against the storm bolter innards.  (yes, I said innards... that'll be my "southern" word of the day!)

With that, the magnetization is complete and you can swap out weapons loadouts.  Once my second box of Betrayal at Calth arrives, I'll be able to run my twin Kheres assault cannon Contemptor, always a favorite!

Contemptor with several customizable loadouts
I am not sure how the ForgeWorld weapons will fit into this scheme, but I guess I'll find out when I break open the blister packs that have been sitting in my Manufactorum Closet for nearly a year!