+ inload: Fixing frosted varnish +

+ Ysaak Rama +

+ A chaplain, to lead the Gatebreakers in their upcoming battles. A minor head and weapon swap from the Indomitus box, I opted to paint him with the green and yellow of the Chapter, rather than the black of the Codex. He's not quite finished yet – the chest symbol, leatherwork, boltgun and spiky shoulder bit need more work, but he's pretty much there. I'll post him up with some additional background when he's complete. +

+ He was a bit of an experiment. With the rest of the Gatebreakers, I've painted the oil wash over flat colour, then highlighted afterwards. I wanted to try doing the highlighting prior to the oil wash, just to see what would happen. In short, it seems to work fine – I think the Chaplain above looks about the same as the other figures; the oil wash doesn't impact the highlighting too much. +

+ Single figures – particularly personalities – are good to experiment with, as there's always a ready excuse for any slight inconsistencies. I think I will sharpen the final highlights a bit further, just to add a spot more impact and contrast; but I'm counting the experiment a success. +

+ Fixing spray varnish fogging +

+ Talking of experiments, spray fogging, also called blushing, frosting or misting, is something that I've been slightly dreading since I've started using spray varnish for the figures. It occurs when the particles of condensation are trapped – this can be due to sudden changes in temperature (for example, spraying onto a figure that's markedly colder or hotter than the area in which you're spraying), or high humidity. +

+ I have thus far avoided spraying on very humid nights, but having read up on some solutions to the problem, I thought that I'd give it a go. Let me be clear; I was hoping he'd come out fine from the spray, but was prepared in case it did result in fogging. +

+ Spoiler: it fogged:

+ The good news is that the solution is the holy trinity of hobby tips: cheap, quick and easy. You can simply paint a little sunflower oil over the surface. Here, I've oiled only the cloth, to show you what happens. +

The glossiness fades quickly. The image at the start of the inload shows the same figure the morning after. Don't gloop it on: you want as thin a coat as possible. I'm guessing that the frosting effect is caused by tiny texturisation scattering light, so a thin layer of oil smooths things out. +

+ I suspect that any oil will have the same effect – though better would be something like artists' linseed oil or walnut oil, which will have been more thoroughly sterlised. The important thing is that you choose a drying oil (that is, it polymerises). Olive oil or mineral oil will never dry, and the former will go rancid. +

+ With that said, the amount you're using is tiny, and if you're sealing it with varnish afterwards anyway, it likely won't have any adverse effect (at least, none more so than using any other organic material, like lichen on a model's base). +

+ Next! +

+ Having tried out the oil trick on the cloth, I wanted to see whether the oil paint I was using would have the same effect. The answer seems to be 'yes', which isn't entirely surprising, as the oil carrier of the paint will be doing the same thing as the sunflower oil. I think the most important thing here is that the process seems to work even when the oil paint is thinned to a glaze consistency with thinners. +

+ Anyway, I can't really recommend that you experiment like this, but I hope that the examples above are helpful. I'll keep you updated on whether the effect returns, or anything unexpected happens. +

+ More building +

+ Besides painting Rama, I cracked on with the Eradicators (unconverted, and headless, since I'll do everything else in one fell swoop)... +

+ ...and a Rift Team; the Gatebreakers' rather enforced approach to duties usually undertaken by Terminators. With vanishingly small numbers of Terminator plate, these boarding specialists bear heavy breaching shields and power mauls, their armour reinforced with additional plating and flame-damping flak-aprons. +

+ These additions are designed to provide additional protection to soft armour areas, while also preventing small arms fire from bypassing the Astartes. This is important because Rift Teams are typically deployed at the head of auxiliary boarding parties – made up of Naval security, Chapter serfs or other non-enhanced warriors. +

+ Having the means to effectively interdict firepower to their allies allows them to set up a defensive foothold in enemy ships, allowing other Gatebreakers to be deployed to relieve them. Rift Teams are positions of high value and their members held in high regard. Gatebreakers frequently compete for the honour of serving in a Strikeforces Rift Teams, despite the obvious dangers. +

+ I also finished the dreadnought, but more on him in a future inload. +


  1. Its an excellent model, but he doesn't read as a Chaplain to me. He's got the mace, but that won't help him stand out in a mace heavy army. His book is tucked away, and again, the Gatebreakers all have a copy of the tenets. He seems to lack the skull mask or any concession to the codex iconography, which may be what you were going for with the Gatebreakers being so non-compliant.

    Interested to see the Rift team develop.

    Also congrats on your decision to merge Primaris and Firstborn, the whole project seems somewhat prescient now.

    1. Those are all good points, and highlight why it's best to have a solid plan. I've rather let my eye off the ball with the Chaplain, in my hurry to get him completed in time for a game. My intention had been for the Gatebreakers to have a different set of specialists (e.g. no techmarines, a conflation of Librarian and lieutenant etc.), and the role of the Chaplain was to be very different.

      However, I hadn't really nailed down what the Chaplain equivalent was, other than not using black... I'll have to see if I can rescue things with the background, and perhaps some extra detail added later.

    2. You've done that and more. I love the irony of a desperate chapter, divergent by necessity, haemorrhaging further Astartes through divergence.

    3. Very kind, ta! Thank-you for keeping me honest – your comments provided the impetus to come up with something a bit more in-depth than the rather nebulous 'not-Chaplain' concept I had.

    4. 'Your dudes' justifies everything, but it makes total sense that a wandering minister would keep the heraldry of his brothers so he 'belongs to the chapter' when afar and is recognised as one-of-us when present (rather than the standard chappy who is with his brothers most of the time, but must differentiate himself due to the seperateness of his role)

  2. I'll never touch the spray varnish again...I'm impressed you found a solution, but no fiddling with oil is worth the headache and risk for me.

    1. Yes, best not to have the problem in the first place! Thanks for your kind comments below :)

  3. And I forgot the lead - the figures are looking great! This has been fun to follow.


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