Tag Archives: Big Mek

Use The Force

If you guessed that all those Orks I posted last week were leading up to something you were right. Whilst I powered through the newest recruits to the Ork Boys squads I was also chipping away at what may be my favourite Ork model from the last few years, the hulking Big Mek with Kustom Force Field.

As conversions go he’s pretty straightforward, built almost entirely as Games Workshop intended with a simple head-swap for one of the excellent Max-Mini Orc Tech Freak heads.

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The face was a joy to paint, full of grumpy character.

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Of course, one Big Mek is never enough, especially when the Teleport Blasta looks so damn good as well. However it seems that GW aren’t keen on anyone making both Big Meks from a single box of models as, although there are bodies a plenty (well, three to be precise) and the bits to build both pieces of ‘teknology’ the components needed to attach either the Teleport Blasta or the Kustum Force Field appear only once. Not to worry, a bit of rickety looking Orky scrap metal covers the gap and leaves me with enough bits to start cobbling together his new colleague.

Big Mek Convert Or Die (7)

As regular readers will know any feedback is appreciated so feel free to let me know what you think in the comments.

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The Fixer

Like the Painboy I showed back here this Big Mek is a model I was initially proud of, then fell out of love with over time. As we shall see the similarity doesn’t end there, he too shall shortly loose his head in spectacular fashion. Anyway, to begin with here’s a few shots of him in his previous incarnation. Big MekBig MekBig MekIn the main I’m still quite pleased with him, the kustom force field on his back still works for me and only an Ork, having already lost one hand and had it replaced with a hook would chop off the other one and graft on a power claw (especially if his job involved comparatively fiddly jobs like tinkering with machines). My dissatisfaction was mostly with those enormous Mek tools, they’re just too disproportionately huge, going beyond ‘comically huge and Orky’ and becoming ‘just a bit much’. They had to go and be replaced with something a little more believable. Whilst I was about it I ended up taking the chance to chop his head off as well. I didn’t have any particular issue with the head he had (in fact I’ll probably reuse it on another Nob) but when I stumbled across the chance to make a new cybork head instead using the control gubbins that normally attach to the mek’s tools I jumped at it. For the organic rear component of the head I used my least favourite of the Nob heads from the Assault on Black Reach kit (the one with the goofy expression, eye-patch and truly awful topknot). As an aside if you remove the topknot the model is improved straight away so I might try using the head like this at a later date. Anyway, having removed the wacky hairdo I shaved the rest of the face back a little to create a flatter surface and stuck the ‘gubbins’ straight on. To avoid it looking too much like a welding mask and clarify that it’s not something he’s wearing but actually part of his head I did a bit of greenstuff work across the crown so it looks like at some stage his whole cranium has been opened up and tinkered with. Here’s the result. Mek HeadHere it is painted prior to being stuck back on. Mek HeadAnd here he is reassembled – Big Mek Megagutz ready to get back to work. Big MekBig MekBig MekBig MekBig MekBig Mek The new mek’s tools, swiped from the mega-nobs kit, really fit the scale of the model much better and I’m really pleased with the new head. What do you think? Did I lose my head on this one (boom boom) or have I fixed ‘im up good? As always I’m happy to hear your thoughts so keep them coming. Until next time – cheers for reading!


Wot? More Orks?

After last week’s release of the Mek Guns I uploaded some pics of my own Lobba conversion (to be found here). Afterwards, digging through the boxes where my Orks have been stored, I found these three disreputable characters; the Lobba’s crew.gretchin-convert-or-die-17

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gretchin-convert-or-die-13I’ve also been working on a few more restorations for my Ork army, including these two Nobs.ork-nob-40k-convert-or-die-13

ork-nob-40k-convert-or-die-7And also a few more Boyz.ork-boy-convert-or-die-40k-2

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ork-boy-convert-or-die-40k-18Today also sees more boyz joining the Waaarg as the Ork release from Game’s Workshop proves to be a gift that keeps on giving.
First of all we have the Painboy, a model I have rather mixed feelings about. His face in particular bothers me. I rather like long-faced Orks – that is to say, the style used by Rackham for their Orcs, or in Game’s Workshops venerable Waaargh The Orks* (of course you don’t remember it, you weren’t even born). However not giving this guy a surgeon’s mask has to be the most spectacular missed opportunity of this batch of releases. The bladed peg-leg is a solid, if slightly obvious, move – perhaps unfairly let down by comparisons to the (rather better executed) Dark Elf Fleet Master. The hand however is (literally) the biggest issue – it’s disproportionately huge and the pose emphasises this, making the whole model look skewed. Overall then this is a model the sum of which sadly does not match the quality of its parts.

*Not really a surprise as Paul Bonner has an artist credit for both.

There’s no such worries with the Mek, a cracking new model bursting with character. Last week I criticised the Big Mek with Shock Attack Gun for its rather gormless face. This new Mek sets that right in spades. He’s covered in great little details (the bolt in his teeth making him look like he’s paused mid-repair to get some extra killing in, the excellent augmetic goggles and other gubbins, the tattered wiring). This is a great addition to the Ork range and should be a lot of fun to paint.
Comparing these two miniatures however it occurs to me that the Mek features a lot more “safe” design choices. There’s nothing radically unusual here, as compared to the Painboy which features all kinds of characterful elements – just a shame they don’t always work really.

The other major “release” this week (apart from the Codex itself of course, which also went up for pre-orders) is the Looted Wagon. Having apparently been cut from the codex this most classically “Orky” unit makes an immediate return by way of White Dwarf magazine. Personally I think this is rather exciting although some raised voices online have complained about it (usually the same voices which attempt to suggest that 6 releases (and counting) over the past weeks represents a half-hearted coverage of the Orks… but I digress…). From Game’s Workshop’s side the argument seems to be that units without models will be cut from codexs, as we’ve seen with Tyranids, Astra Militarum, etc. Mostly this has seen the demise of various special characters and frankly it’s a shame as these units not only added to the richness of the army but also provided people with a gateway into the world of converting. It’s this that makes Looted Wagons so important, you can’t buy them as a kit and hopefully you never will. What you can buy is an Imperial (or for that matter Eldar, Tau etc) vehicle and get looting with the best your bitsbox and imagination can conjure. In the end then, although I’m disappointed that they ever planned to drop it I’m glad to see the Looted Wagon back (before we even knew it was gone). To lose it would have been a great shame, and whilst in the old days one would have had to rush out and buy White Dwarf within a month to get the rules now the digital magazine keeps it safe into functional perpetuity.
Hopefully this trend will continue and the Looted Wagons and Exalted Flamer will not be the only units without codex entries saved by the White Dwarf safety-net. Perhaps they could even make a feature out of it, combining official rules for these lost units with a gallery of conversions from around the Internet. Come on, a man can dream can’t he?


I Fought the Waaagh (and the Waaagh Won)

Last week saw the release of the Flash Gitz, the most preposterously and excitingly overarmed Orks of all. Seeing these smug show-offs finally getting the miniatures they deserved fired me into action and I decided to dig my own converted Gitz out of the box where they were residing and get to work restoring them. Chaos fans shouldn’t despair though, although I’m currently riding a wave of Orky enthusiasm I’ve got a few Chaos projects on the go as well, so I’ll be back to posting about spiky warp-worshippers in no time.
flash-gits-convert-or-die-orks-1This was the first Flash Git I made. I’m still not sure if I like him or not. At the time I didn’t really have a plan, or much idea of how to make a suitably snazzy gun, so I decided to make him a gunslinger, making up for having more “normal” guns by giving him two. He’s still one of the squad that I’m least sure I’m happy with (although I love the cheeky grot in his backpack).
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flash-gits-convert-or-die-orks-6This is more like it. I even tied him into my Space Marines army (then in its very early days) by giving him a suitable trophy. I decided that at least some of my Gitz would be former Bad Moons, known for having more teef than sense and a love of outsize weapons. Back then the rules didn’t call for one of the Gitz to be a Kaptin but I always reckoned the pilfering skills of this guy’s monkey sidekick might be enough to keep him one step ahead of the other ladz.
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flash-gits-convert-or-die-orks-3This one started life as a standard nob but as I added extra gubbins to his gun he evolved into another Flash Git. The Parrot Squig is another favourite component of mine.
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flash-gits-convert-or-die-orks-5Flash Gitz should have the biggest guns around and it’s hard to get bigger than a cannon. It also fits in nicely with the pirate theme of the Gitz. Take that ‘ummie scum!
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flash-gits-convert-or-die-orks-8This chap, with his outsize arms, was a bit of an experiment. My idea was that, wanting to increase his personal firepower, but already struggling to lift his own monstrously proportioned snazzgun, one of the Gitz decided to recruit himself an “assistant”. After one of his mates suffered “a little accident” and ended up minus his head he hauled the body to the nearest bad-doc and they set to work customising. Adding some vat grown arms allows the unfortunate “recruit” to carry his spare gun into battle whilst the inclusion of a cybork brain stops him from getting up to any treacherous high-jinks. His favourite grot perches on his shoulder to work the controls. Of course, grots being naturally disloyal, it’s only a matter of time before he starts taking on airs and graces and commands his Orky steed to blow their master to bits. For the Flash Git this element of risk only makes the relationship more exciting!
Flash Gits
I also notice that the new Flash Gitz come with larger bases than the Nobs. At some point I may upgrade my Gitz to larger bases, especially if I buy new Gitz to add to the squad. If nothing else it might stop them falling over all the time under the weight of their guns.

Mek Guns/Big Mek
As I have over the last couple of weeks I’m also going to talk a little about the new Ork kits which have just become available for pre-order; the Mek Guns and a Big Mek. Unlike the Gorkanaught/Morkanaught – where all we had to compare it to was the Stompa – and the Flash Gits – an all new kit – the Mek Guns (formerly called Big Guns) and the Big Mek with Shokk-Attack Gun both replace miniatures previously available. In the case of the Big Mek that miniature is one of my favourites in the Ork range (and one that I’d never actually got around to buying for myself). Let’s take a look at it first. I certainly like the new body more, covered in cables, dials and other gubbins it goes a long way to making him look suitably like a master of all things mechanical. The head looks pretty gormless though (having said that the old head wasn’t amazing either). I’m also really not a fan of trailing smoke, fire, electricity etc on a model so that would probably have to go if I was painting one of the new version. Overall though, for the fairly minor hassle of clipping off the trailing electric currents and replacing the head it’s pretty exciting to have this most iconic Ork model in nice, easy-to-work-with plastic. By and large, I’m happy.

No such conundrum exists with the Mek Guns – the old models were nothing to write home about with their only real Orky character coming from the grot crews. Those however are utterly outshone by the grots that crew the new kit. The one wearing a welder’s mask is a particular favourite, although I’m also really taken with the spotter and the foreman leaning on the drum of cable. The weapons themselves are also cracking, really capturing the Orky vibe of high-tech equipment badly constructed out of scrap.
The old Big Guns came in three flavours; kannons, lobbas and zzap guns. The rules still allow all three options, as well as adding some new alternatives, all matching the faintly-ridiculous character of the Orks. Take the Traktor Cannon for example, a weapon capable of dragging aircraft out of the skies and smashing them to scrap in an instant. It’s utterly typical of the greenskins that such a weapon, which would grant anyone total control of the skies were it crewed by a team of disciplined soldiers, is instead left in the care of bickering grots.
As it happens I already have a Mek Gun in my collection, having made a Lobba of my own a couple of years ago. Obviously it’s a lot smaller than the new Mek Guns but I’m still rather pleased with it and its comparative lack of scale won’t really matter much in a ramshackle Ork army.
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lobba-convert-or-die-orks-6On a final note regarding the Mek Guns it seems there’s still no sign of any new Warbuggies being released, which is rather unfortunate as the current models weren’t so much sculpted as hacked out of the rock sometime in the early Mesolithic. However should none appear the Mek Gun chassis should provide a good starting point for creating home-made alternatives. Anyway, with the codex still to arrive let’s keep our fingers crossed for more cracking Ork miniatures next week.