Greetings C&C readers,
So after a few weeks of pouring through the Dark Eldar Codex looking for Gems that might make my Dark Eldar army a little less glass, and a little more cannon, I decided to try my hand at scratch building or converting a Razorwing/Voidraven.........
Before I started building my own conversion I dug through the various 40k themed sites to see what other people have done. At the moment there are a few good conversions out there, from various builds using the Eldar fire prism turret, to complete scratch built vehicles based on the Forgewold Nightwing model (there are also some real ugly conversions out there). As I mentioned in my previous article I have been toying with the idea of building an army that can easily swing between being a Dark Eldar and regular Eldar army, so the idea of using an Eldar vehicle as the basis of my conversion seemed like a good starting point. Now the Fire Prism Turret conversion that people have put together looks very cool but seems a bit small for a dual space/atmospheric fighter so I decided to stay away from that idea (I also don't want Goa'uld fighters zipping around my army). The Vyper based models that some have converted also look very cool (a few that is), however I think that if I'm going to convert a Dark Eldar vehicle from a Vyper it will be a Venom, as that is what the sketch in the Codex most resembles.
So after looking through the Eldar models available the Wave Serpent kit seemed to call out to me. After looking at the parts I decided to go with a more subtle conversion, not like my previous major conversion project (Thunderwolf Cavalry). My hope was to make the model look like it belonged in a Dark Eldar army, yet could easily act as a wave serpent in my possible future Eldar army.
So with no further explanation, on the the Stage-by-Stage conversion:
The parts I used for this conversion include:
a. A complete Wave Serpent Kit
b. Left over pieces from several Raider/Ravager kits
c. Left over bits from the Reaver kits.
1) The first thing I did was cut off the tube that extends from the body of the vehicle to the bottom wing portion. Then I put together the bottom portion of the vehicle, including the body of the wave serpent.
2) Second I put together the pilot. I used an extra body from the Reaver kit. I took the reaver and cut the body off bellow the belt so that it was the same height as the eldar body that came with the WS. I used a DE head from the Ravager/Raider kit. If you do this yourself make sure not to use the helmet with hair/topknot or a blade above the helm as it won't fit in the canopy.
3) The next thing I did was place the Pilot in the vehicle. I didn't glue the top piece down yet as I expected to dig into the bottom of the wings later and didn't want to accidentally cut through the top surface.4) I put together the main guns next. I used Bright lances from the weapons sprue as my Dark Lances/Void lances and the Eldar Missile Launchers to represent the various missile systems available to the RW/VR. I took four of the Raider/Ravager rear steering blades and carefully cut of the center rod. Again if you are doing this yourself make sure to keep both intact as both the rod and blade get used.
5) I decided to put together the twin-linked splinter rifle next. I used the weapon mount from the WS and glued a splinter rifle from the Reaver kit on each side.
6) So as I discovered as I inspected the various kits (that I had available) is that the rod from the raider/ravager blade is the correct size to fit in the hole of each of the weapons from the eldar sprue. I marked locations on the bottom of the vehicle with a pen and once happy with the layout I carefully drilled a wholes for the weapon mounts. I put the rods into each whole so that the longer half went into the body.
7) Putting the guns aside to attach later, I next attached the top piece of the vehicle and started to add on various Dark Eldar bits. I took two matching rear raider blades and trimmed off the round bit at the middle. I attached the blades on the bottom of the WS wing towards the back. Before I attached them I trimmed the top of the blade to better contour to the arc of the WS wing.
8) I took two more of the Raider/Ravager rear blades and trimmed them a tad. I attached them to the bottom of the top armor above the jet exhaust.
9) I used the top rear blade and the bottom wing/blades of a Reaver for my next additions.
10) I put on my bottom weapons next. Now my original thought was to not glue the guns down so that I could pull them off later when(if) I use the model as a WS. However the rod ended up fitting a bit tighter than I thought and after the third use the piece broke off so I glued the guns down. If I do another conversion of the RW/VR I will probably use magnets.
11) I added some more bits from the Raider/Ravager sprues to give the model more Dark Eldar flair. I was surprised how the chain with skull fit perfectly to the body next to the left jet exhaust.
12) Now if I decide at some point to use the Splinter Cannon I can use the lower portion of the WS turret and a Shuriken Cannon from the Eldar heavy weapon sprue. I didn't glue down the Shurken Cannon so I can attach the top of the turret later as needed.
13) For the base attachment I took a clear mechanical pencil and cut off all the bits until I had a nice clear (and surprisingly strong) support rod. I cut a whole in the bottom of the vehicle so that I can insert the thinner end of the support rod.
14) I found a scale image of the flyer base and cut a cd and piece of cork to match. I cut a whole in the cork to match the rod and glued the cd and cork ovals together. Now I found that a random little round piece in the WS sprue that fit perfectly into the bottom of my pencil support so I glued it down in the whole of the cork (I hoped this would give more surface area of attachment and thus would be a bit more stable).
15) To cover/hide the nob where the WS turret sits I grabbed the Eldar parts from the Apocalypse tank sprue that came with the Apocalypse multiple tank boxes. Make sure to attach the support opening down so that it fits over the nub, and I didn't glue it down so I can put on my Splinter Cannon assembly if needed.
Well there it is: My "Subtle" Razorwing/Voidraven. I hope to get some play testing in to see wether it is worth the 165-205 points you have to pay to use it.