The model was quite straight forward to put together although despite being plastic some of the many pointy bits are bloody sharp. Nor was it too bad to paint as the serious level of detail, such as deep wood grain, makes things much easier to highlight. The model was to be painted in block colours and washed in Army Painter dip, my usual technique, but the detail screamed highlights. There are actually two highlight colours over the base wood colour, two over the base stone colour and two for the bell. Other areas, such as the plague filled smoke emminating from the bell and the two censers, are just one highlight.
Strangely, the real problem was adding the dip and then the varnish. The dip took almost two hours to apply as there are just so many areas to cover. Being made of timber baulks each piece has four sides and all is woven together with some very tricky to reach bits indeed. My main concern was the dip drying out in places and forming tide marks on areas as I worked around the detail. I had to mentally break the model down into defined areas starting with the bell as this was fairly central and divided the model. I then worked down one side of the carriage, taking care to get between all of the various struts, and the wheels. I then had to get to the inner areas of that side which was a pain. After completeing the second side of the carriage I could work on the Rat Ogre at the back and then work my way along the decking areas. So many times I came across pooled areas of dip between various struts that were on the point of turning into toffee, that almost dried out stage that can realy mess you up if missed. This is what happens when you have to do inner and outer areas of course, and you have to put on a lot of dip to let it do its thing and then take off the excess. This also meant that the model took a long time to fully dry out.
The varnishing was just as bad as the dip application, you really ned to make sure that every surface had been given a good coat of the varnish otherwise you are left with some really obvious patches! This was another two hour stint but rather than toffee like blobs I had to deal with those irritating varnish air bubbles! Back and forth picking up excess varnish before it dried out to much...sigh. I gave this a full day to dry out and I have to say I am pleased with the result, no major patches, no missed bits, no blobbing....and I think the bell itself has come out really well, has that metal look I have had difficulty with before. Highlights before adding dip really does help give the model extra depth and takes so little time.
This model gets its first game on Tuesday against Phil's Beastmen army. We each have 2000 points and if the bell doesn't blow itself up, and me along with it, it might not be such a one sided affair as I fear....hell, we might even win! I have given myself a little extra edge, just in case. I made it myself because you never know, the Great Horned One may be watching! It might also serve to distract Phil too....I will accept any edge that I can get :)