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Title: "Actual Scale" Space Marines
Description: A guide to building bigger Astartes...

Doghouse - February 18, 2008 08:01 PM (GMT)
So what is "Actual Scale"?

Over the years myself and a few other like minded individuals have pioneered a technique which has become known as "true-scale" a process that involves making marines bigger basically.
For myself this began way back in 2002 with my White Scorpion marines seen below. Not content with regular plastics I wanted something bigger that fitted with the background material surrounding the Astartes. I wanted larger than life heroes.

My first Truescale attempt.
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This process was later refined leading to my Pre-Heresy World Eaters and the more successful Gothic pattern marines which I created initially for a Dark Angels army and later used on my Pre-Heresy Night Lords.
None of which were ever finished but both provided me with an invaluable insight to how to make marines look that more imposing on the tabletop.

"Gothic pattern" Dark Angels
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"True Scale" Pre-Heresy World Eaters
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Actual Scale Astartes

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The Actual Scale marine concept came about sometime later, in fact it was a combination of curiosity and the release of the new plastic Terminators that led me come up with the idea of really big marines worthy of the title Astartes.
Actual Scale differs from True Scale in that it is an attempt to make marines that are proportionally in scale with the other denizens of the 40k universe rather than just make bigger marines.
Compared to regular human models they stand at approximately seven foot six in scale terms, towering over the regular plastic marines and terrifying your opponents.
Over the next few updates to this tutorial I will be providing details of the my most requested tutorial to date, hopefully catering to most skill levels.
Although the process has become mostly associated with Pre-Heresy I will be demonstrating different techniques that will allow you to include these behemoths in your regular and Chaos Space Marine armies.

Part Two to follow...

Doghouse - February 18, 2008 08:20 PM (GMT)
So what do I need?

First of all you'll need the following recommended components to build your own Actual Scale astartes:

Terminator Legs
Terminator Assault squad Storm Shield arms
Terminator Stormbolter arms
Terminator shoulder pads
Spare plastic marine arms
Marine Heads/helmets
Greenstuff or Procreate
Plastic rod (or bits of sprue will do)
Sculpting/modeling tools such as the GW sculpting tool.
Spare weapons such as bolters.

Creating one of these Astartes will seem daunting at first due to the amount of greenstuff work involved but don't be put off just yet. I'll be doing my best to provide step by step instructions that will result in something that looks like this guy here.

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With a bit of practice and experiance you'll be able to create more varied positions and armour variants but for the time being we will be focusing on constructing a stripped down Mk VII marine.
I will be providing advice later so that you can create other armour variants such as the Mk III seen here.

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Falkus Kibre - February 24, 2008 03:15 AM (GMT)
I just dont see how any human can sculpt that well its amazing :o

Doghouse - February 25, 2008 05:42 PM (GMT)
QUOTE (Falkus Kibre @ Feb 24 2008, 03:15 AM)
I just dont see how any human can sculpt that well its amazing :o

Who said I was human? ;)

Thanks mate, part two of the tutorial coming soon. :)

BigWill - February 27, 2008 07:26 PM (GMT)
with the MK3 guy did you cut down his legs and then built it up with g/s.
or did you just add a layer of g/s over the regular leg then sculpt?

Falkus Kibre - February 28, 2008 01:57 AM (GMT)
Why havint you enterd your model's in GD yet?

cortez - March 8, 2008 09:36 PM (GMT)
whoa you are really good i been following all your tutorials. nice work can't wait for the next update. by the way is there any chance of completing your tutorial on how to make mk5 true scale marines

Doghouse - March 8, 2008 11:13 PM (GMT)
BigWill: Yeah pretty much. I removed the thigh on the left leg and added a plastic rod for the armature. I then sculpted over this to get the leaning effect.

Falkus Kibre: I'm not really a competative person, I do it for fun.
It's a bit like guitar players, you've got those who do it to become rock legends and those who just do it for fun.

cortez: Thanks mate. I should be uppdating this log soonish but real world stuff is getting in the way at the moment.
If I get the chance I'll see what I can do for the Mk V tutorial. :)

Manneus Drath - March 9, 2008 06:39 AM (GMT)
Man how do you sculpt so well?! Ive always found greenstuff to not be malleable enough to really do anything with well. And how do you get it so smooth?

cortez - March 9, 2008 02:21 PM (GMT)
:D thanks doghouse I am actually starting a true scale spacemarine army
I now at 12 gothic marines waiting in the post. you are a god amoung gods of modeling

The Jammy Marines - March 9, 2008 07:31 PM (GMT)
looks cool i have seen some of your tutorials befor but im going to try the gothic one :D

Tarik Torgaddon - March 9, 2008 08:35 PM (GMT)
I bow down to your superior skills Doghouse.

Kharn - March 10, 2008 06:57 AM (GMT)
I just dont get how ur so damn good at greenstuff work!

Great models!

Doghouse - April 2, 2008 05:02 PM (GMT)
Thanks guys, don't worry Manneus I'll be giving away my secret of smooth GS in this tutorial. ;)

Sculpting the Legs

This is going to be fairly image intensive as I'm going to be explaining the finer points of some simple techniques to improve the quality of your GS work.
I used the following to work with the green stuff, a simple GW style sculpting tool and a small tub of vasalene.

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The trick to working with vasalene is to apply it to the flat underside of the rounded end of your sculpting tool by lightly dabbing it in the tub and then wipe it on a spare bit of cloth or rag. Avoid doing this with tissue as fibres may attach to the vasalene, ideally you want a thin greasy film or residue left on the end. You can do the same with water but in my experience this is the best technique to use.

Preparing the Legs.

First off you need a pair of plastic Terminator legs. For the time being I want to keep the tutorial simple enough for everyone to have a bash at regardless of skill level so I'll be making an MK VII style marine.

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The first thing that I have done is to base the legs on a standard infantry base, this is more of a personal preference than a rule of thumb. I like big marines but prefer them to be based correctly.
Once that's glued in place and dry I've cut the top of the rounded part that connects to the torso flat in preparation for the torso later int he tutorial. I will be demonstrating how to sculpt the entire torso but don't feel that you need to do that if you're not up to it. You could use a regular marine torso at a pinch if you wanted to but he'll be a bit thinner and not as imposing.

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As you can see here I've removed the thigh plates at the top of the legs. This isn't one hundred percent neccesary really but as I'm going to be demonstrationg how to model the thigh armour it suits my needs here. If you want you can just work around them.

The Greaves

The Greaves are the lower half of the legs, the large armoured part of the leg that protects the shins and partially covers the feet.
The key to making the legs is that it's basically filling in the gaps on the terminator legs.
Place a a blob of GS in the centre of the leg like this:

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Doghouse - April 2, 2008 05:03 PM (GMT)
You then flatten out the GS filling in the gap so it looks more like this:

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To achieve this look you need to use the following techniques with the sculpting tool. As I'm self taught I don't know the technical terms that are used so will be using my own to describe my methods.

Smoothing out the GS

Using the flat rounded end of the tool you roughly press the GS in place pushing it out to the edges to fill the gap.

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Don't worry about filling it all the way if there isn't enough GS as you can add another blob whilst it's still wet and work it in by smoothing it out.

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Which gives you something like this

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The technique for creating sharp edges is fairly simple and we'll be looking that in the next part.

Doghouse - April 2, 2008 05:27 PM (GMT)
To get the GS smooth you can used the following methods using the round end of the sculpting tool as seen. These techniques are best used for large flat areas but can be adapted for other means.

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This is a simple method for getting the area flat and for spreading the GS out. It's just a simple matters of pushing the GS outwards towards the edge and moving the tool in an up and down motion afterwards to flatten it out.
Some pressure is applied at first but at it takes shape less pressure is used.

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This is the second step and a good one for getting that smooth surface that you are after. Both techniques here (rubbing and smoothing) use the vasalene method and are done straight after applying the GS. Smoothing can be done anything up to fifteen or twenty minutes after the model has started to cure. In fact it is worth coming back every five or ten minutes for the first twenty minutes to smooth the GS areas over again.
To smooth the GS lightly move the tool in a circular motion over the areas. Concentrate on small areas at a time and only apply extremely light pressure.

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Before moving on with the main tutorial I'll add some bits about forming hard edges.

Falkus Kibre - April 2, 2008 06:29 PM (GMT)
Cant wait for more! :)

Rogal Dorn - April 2, 2008 06:52 PM (GMT)
very nice man. im gonna have to make a Squad of true scaled Fists

recceboy - April 3, 2008 02:41 AM (GMT)
Looks good , I have a few Termie's in the bitz box . Might have to give it a try.

Falkus Kibre - April 8, 2008 04:44 PM (GMT)
so... any updates?

Doghouse - April 12, 2008 11:21 AM (GMT)
Updates asap, I'm still working on it. :)

VESPASIAN - April 14, 2008 02:38 PM (GMT)

Got all excited when I saw that Doghouse had posted on this thread; then got swallowed by a world of disappointment when I read his post!

Oh well I'll just have to be patient. :(

ShroudFilm - April 14, 2008 04:35 PM (GMT)
Bah! Curse you both for getting my hopes up! :D

VESPASIAN - April 14, 2008 07:55 PM (GMT)
QUOTE (ShroudFilm @ Apr 14 2008, 04:35 PM)
Bah! Curse you both for getting my hopes up!  :D

I am the Hope Killer!!!! :P

I promise not to post on this thread again untill Doghouse has posted the next part of his absolutely superb Actual Scale tutorial.........

.........oops!!! Too late!!!

Maratheus - April 29, 2008 04:26 PM (GMT)
I think it's time for a lolcat.

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Doghouse - September 27, 2008 09:13 PM (GMT)
I'm having some computer issues at the moment but am going to continue with the tutorial regardless. ;)

The Torso

After hours of hard work and research I've managed to break the torso section of the tutorial down into a simple process so that it can be done by anyone. I will stress at this point that this is not the same technique that I used on my Night Lords Captain but the one that i used on my WIP Invaders army seen here:

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These guys are technically Mk VII but the tutorial cna be adapted for other marks of armour to suit pre-heresy armies but I'll try and cover that later.
This is simply because the original method is extremely time consuming and requires a higher than average knowledge of sculpting.
This new technique is fairly quick and I will be taking you through in stages, starting with the converting of the terminator torso right up to sculpting bits on.
The idea is that you can stop at any point once the basic work is done to suit your level of modeling skill, you can even adapt parts of the process to replace the GS work with plasticard if need be.

Safety: I must stress at this point though that the plastic is fairly thick and there is a lot of cutting involved, so make sure that you use a sharp modeling knife and clippers where needed. Remember to make all cuts away from yourself, so the blade is moving away from you when you make the cuts.
Last thing I want to do is another tutorial on how to sew fingers back on with one hand... ;)

I'll be using a snap-fix AoBR Terminator for the tutorial but regular terminators will do. Like I say once the basics are out of the way then we can look at adding the details.

Doghouse - September 27, 2008 09:14 PM (GMT)
Step One

I will go back and redo this properly but as my computer has lost the original files I've had to quickly knock these pictures up. :rolleyes:

The First Cut

This is the standard standard push fix terminator that you get with the AoBR set. You can use a regular Terminator however.

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The following lines are where we are going to cut the torso.
The first is a rather simple cut but neccesary as it defines the where the torso meets the hips.

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The second cut is to remove the arm pegs and the raised areas that the arms are attached to.

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The third and forth cuts are made across the top and the down the back.

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Doghouse - September 27, 2008 09:15 PM (GMT)
The fifth cut is then made down the front of the torso like so.

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The result is something like this (but probably smoother as this is a rush job).

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Doghouse - September 27, 2008 09:16 PM (GMT)
Here's the rear of what the moldel should look like but you could probably do a better job of it if you took your time and removed the remaining grills at the bottom. You could remove the power socket thing as well but I keep it on mine personally.

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The chest plate

Although this torso is stuck on the terminator it's jsut so that I can show you where to cut. Do not stick it on just yet!

The first cut removes the head from under the chin of the helmet and removes the collar as well.

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The second cut removes the pegs on the back of the push fix torso and is done in line with the front section of the chest plate. So everything behind this line is removed.

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Doghouse - September 27, 2008 09:16 PM (GMT)
Next you attach your chest plate to the torso. To get this at the right height you need to place this so that the bottom of the chest plate is level with the crescent shape on the torso.

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Now the main reason that I've done it this way is to get the proportions correct. If you simply used the back of a regular marine torso which no-doubt some are concidering at this point the torso will be too short proportionally and it'll look wrong.

So this part here

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is level with this crescent shape here.

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That's it for tonight as I'm shattered and gonna hit the sack.
Tomorrow I'll show you two different methods for the abdominal region so stay tuned. ;)

Massaen - October 6, 2008 05:05 AM (GMT)
awesome! I have been hanging out for this tute... gonna have a crack at it when i see where to go from here!

Corax - October 13, 2008 03:00 AM (GMT)
I think I'm going to make all 40 of my AOBR Terminators into true scale/actual scale SMs. Can I please get an update?

Battle Brother Loken - October 21, 2008 05:04 PM (GMT)
yah i would like a update to
hardcore world eater vets here i come :D

Doghouse - October 21, 2008 06:19 PM (GMT)
I'll be updating asap guys so stay tuned. ;)

Corax - October 21, 2008 08:50 PM (GMT)
QUOTE (Doghouse @ Oct 21 2008, 01:19 PM)
I'll be updating asap guys so stay tuned. ;)


Maratheus - October 22, 2008 08:32 AM (GMT)
So the back of the model will be sculpted? I have a model in the works that could greatly benefit from the update :)

Battle Brother Loken - November 16, 2008 05:35 PM (GMT)
QUOTE (Doghouse @ Oct 21 2008, 06:19 PM)
I'll be updating asap guys so stay tuned. ;)

i am still tuned in :( but nothings coming over the air waves

Doghouse - June 2, 2009 08:27 PM (GMT)
Don't worry mate it'll be broadcasting loud and clear asap. ;)

Just to let you guys know that I'm updating this tutorial via Youtube, nowhere near the production levels of Shroud but I'll be going through the process step by step.

I've started adding some vids already, although they are a bit naff, covering the basics of GS work to conclude with the Actual Scale Tutorial.

Here's a link to one of them, check my other vids for other bits.

I'll post a link once the main tutorial starts. ;)

Part one:

Whitehorn - June 3, 2009 09:01 AM (GMT)
Good stuff dh, looking forward to your 'advanced' techniques :)

It's nice to see how other people approach greenstuff.

Moon - June 3, 2009 02:09 PM (GMT)
A really interesting thread for Conversion Newbs like myself (I'm currently bracing myself in the face of making Mortarion for The Horus Heresy campaign *eek*)

i am eagerly awaiting the finished guide :)

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