More Destroyed Mecha!

For a few years now, Tim and I have discussed building destroyed mech markers for our Mech Attack convention games. Tim got the ball rolling a couple months ago and now I've decided to follow suit.

I didn't know anything about casting, so Tim came over and showed me how. We followed the method he originally used for his wrecked cars though -assuming mechs to be sturdier than autos- we made more effort to keep the original shapes intact.

These were a couple of the mechs we used. We took a cast of one part each from 8 different mechs.

After removing the tin foil the results were pretty good, but I wanted something a bit less crumpled so I began to work the casts with a heavy chisel-blade exacto knife. The plaster doesn't dry completely for a week or more so for the first day the casts are very carveable. On most of them I removed quite a bit of the crumples, deepened grooves and even carved in some detail that wasn't there. Additionally, some of the casts were too thick so I took a coping saw and cut them thinner. It was a lot of work, but quite enjoyable and pretty easy since there was no need for anything approaching perfection.

Sorry, but I didn't take the before and after carving pics I should have.  The difference was dramatic!

After that the casts were first sprayed black. The green mech parts were then sprayed with Krylon Camo "Army Green" and the grey mechs were just give a couple of light dustings of cheap flat white spray paint. depending on whether they were taken from green or grey mechs. Some time ago Josh had given me a variety of precut hardboard bases. I trimmed these a bit to fit, smeared them with premixed concrete patch and pressed the mech casts into them

I also dipped into one of my many bags-o-crap and placed gears and some other bits to suggest broken joints and such. Also a few pieces of broken plaster for chunks of concrete.

While the concrete patch was still wet I dipped them in my bucket of dry "Sand Mix Concrete".

The next day I blew off the excess dry concrete mix and got painting. The gears got black gesso. Silver marker (often smeard with a finger) chips all over. Two quick dark brown washes (tap water and burnt umber craft paint), a drybrush of tan, a blast of varnish and done!

The Macross Veritech (Battletech Valkyrie) leg came out quite recongnizable.

This Grey Destroid leg is just ok. I shouldn't have put the grey concrete sections next to the grey leg.

The Green Spartan leg is much better and the contrast with the concrete is nice.

The Macross Monster torso looks more like a spacecraft than a mech torso but the shape is cool and a lot of the angles survived the casting process.

I probably should have darkened the exhausts though.

The Kryomek Strider torso is kind of a mess, but at least it has some nice angles.

These last three are my favorites.

The Gasraki torso isn't a well-known design but the shape came through well.

Even though it's the back, the shape of the Macross Tomahawk (Battletech Warhammer) is very recognizable.

The classic Macross Defender (Battletech Rifleman) is one of my all time favorite mech designs.  Gotta love the heavy tan drybrush for bringing out what little detail there was.

This was a really fun project. In the past I've done very little sculpting but carving and reshaping the initial casts was quite easy and I'm very pleased with the results. These will be great for marking the final resting places of our steel behemoths and I strongly suspect many will show up as terrain in our smaller sci-fi skirmishes.

Between the two of us Tim and I have more than enough mech wrecks, but now I'm inspired to make wrecks of some the tanks, AFV's and copters we use in our game.  Even beyond our Mech Attack convention games, this project has got me thinking that it would be easy to have wrecks for every sci-fi game that I play.

-Karl Paulsen

2 responses to “More Destroyed Mecha!

  1. Nice job, these are looking pretty darn good and your efforts really made them more mech-like! The inner painter in me can’t help but think that some metallic edge highlighting and a set of numbers or faction logos stenciled on here or there, and weathering added after would push these up a further notch.

  2. Thanks,
    I like all those ideas!
    But I’m lazy.

    I actually did a fair bit of metalic edging with silver marker but I rubbed it in with my finger to soften it a bit a so the washes ended up hiding most if it. I should have just marked it up and not softened it at all.

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