Thursday, July 18, 2013

Rogue Trader Chaos Dreadnought Conversion

Lead GW sculpts from the 1980's, can be toxic to my aesthetic.

As I completed the construction phase on this WH30k Vraksian CSM set, I found myself with a moral quandry.  The old RT Chaos Dreadnought was to serve as the core of my Dark Apotheosis Daemon Prince, but the model itself had a fairly... odd sculpt.  In addition to short and stubby arms and legs, the model demands resolution to the following quandry:  Phallus, or no phallus?

While it was certainly tempting to build this model "anatomically correct", I instead chose to keep it family friendly. Hence the tail.  Regardless, on to the conversion!

The photo above displays the torso of my DP.  Starting from the bottom:  I used the front legs and hooves from a Forgefiend to give the model the height and stance it deserved.  Next, I expanded the torso by adding both a nut, and the barrel of a hades autocannon, with brass rod running straight up into the head section.  This gave me a sturdy core to build from.  The ribcage, is made from two defiler power-scourges chopped down, with some wire to form a raggedy sternum.  The shoulders and upper-arms are from Forgefiend weapon mounts, with defiler wrist guards turned into massive shoulder pads.  I even added a few defiler "skull masks" to the shoulder pads, to further the Iron Warriors feel.  I like how the shoulder pads repeat the profile of the 30k style terminator armor.  The forearms are made from Heldrake legs and claws, but you can see them better in some pics lower down...

Here you can see the tail I pinned to the pseudo-phallus.  You can also see some of the chaos icons I used to flesh-out the lower back of the model.  I know, hourglass figures are all the rage in the chaos warp these days...

While totally impractical, I love this "shield".  Made from a re-purposed manticore rocket rack, I trimmed the missile tracks, and eventually (not pictured) wrapped the shield with crisscrossing barbed wire.  This pic also gives a decent angle on the smokestack-chimney pieces I added to the model's back.  These chimneys have been cut down from their original Maulerfiend size, and placed in such a way to give reference to the "back vents" on the original H.R. Giger design for the Alien.  I thought the RT head sculpt was already a nod towards the Alien, so I thought I would be free to continue such direction.  The tail is also fairly similar to Giger's original design, if only in profile.

This is a photo detailing the hammer I made for the DP.  The shaft of the weapon is made from multiple brass rods, as well as the barrel of a fantasy cannon.  I used some of the mooring from an empire steam tank, chaos icons, and plastic card to create the head of the hammer.  I have since added (not pictured) tubing and guitar wire running from the head of the hammer, to the DP's power source.  I also made sure to score the plastic card head of the hammer with an exacto knife, to display rigorous use.

This photo is for scale, with an aspiring champion CSM to give you an idea of the conversion's size.  And the state of my hobby desk. 

 All in all, this conversion turned out far better than I could have hoped.  What could have started as simply a crotch-joke, turned into a pretty unique build.  I would like to think that the finished product keeps the WH30k terminator armor profile, while giving a nod to Giger's Alien.  With just a touch of "World of Warcraft style" weapon and shield.

I think Perturabo would be proud.

Wish me luck finding weather suitable to prime this army in, what with the 100 degree heat.


  1. Beautiful conversion, I'm a fan!

  2. Awesome conversion! Very unique and I love what you did with the hammer. I'm right there with you on the weather... I have so much ready to prime but the humidity on the east coast makes it impossible right now.

  3. I love it, especially the hammer. Those old RT models had some questionable design choice (not th eleast of which being spiked wangs) but were also charming in their own way.

    Well done!

  4. Wow. What an awesome amalgam of the past and the present. Very nice job!

  5. very nice conversion. THe whole thing really comes together well.

  6. For some reason your blog fell off my blogroll (which I have rectified now, of course!). I absolutely love the repurposed chaos dread as the basis of the DP, it really turned out looking fantastic!

    Looking forward to seeing more!

  7. That just looks sharp sharp sharp! Love it...

    ...though you know my personal design aesthetic!

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