So, when I heard about Warmachine and Hordes and how one of their biggest selling points was internal balance, I jumped on the chance to start collecting a Trollbloods army. Admittedly I'm not a big fan of most of the Warmachine models, although the Hordes models are quite a bit more appealing to me. Trollbloods in particular combined kilts, ale, brute strength, ridiculous toughness and regeneration and best of all: some good ol' fashioned axe to mouth savagery. I couldn't pass up on that!
Over the last few months I've managed to collect a sizeable army which I've slowly been constructing. Nothing is painted yet although I've assembled and based about 2/3 of what I own so far, which is roughly about 600$ worth of Privateer Press product including the Main Rules and Trollbloods hard cover books. I'm looking forward to investing in the last few models I feel will compliment this large force and then painting up my first warlock and his or hers attending force. Then, I will finally get the chance to learn and play my first game(s)!
Having attended PAX 2012 a few weeks ago, Privateer Press had their booth set up and I was lucky enough to get my hands on the Mountain King before it's released soon. While I've heard mixed reviews as to the effectiveness of this Gargantuan on the tabletop, I couldn't resist the primal, visceral and downright ferocious nature of this model. There's no doubt in my mind that this is the largest model I've ever had the privilege of assembling so I decided I'd share with you my journey through the process. This tutorial will most likely end up being two parts, although if I decide to include my painting process, it could easily extend into three, four, five or even six parts depending on how I want to split up each stage of painting. Any ways, first the assembly!
Hordes Trollbloods: Mountain King Assembly Tips & Advice
Tools you need:
- Sharp Hobby Knife
- Wet Sanding Paper (maybe optional depending on your files)
- Super Glue
- Wire/Hobby Cutters for the larger pieces of flash/resin that are stuck to certain pieces
- Blue Tack (optional)
- Green Stuff/Putty
With any model kit, as soon as you unwrap the precious plastic seal and open the box, make sure you have instructions and all the pieces necessary to construct the model in every way its intended. If there are any issues with any missing pieces for the Mountain King, contact Privateer Press for parts replacement or ideally, exchange the product for a new box with the all the pieces in it! This is what you should have in your Trollbloods Mountain King box:
Catalogue your Resin pieces:
- Mountainous Back
- Left & Right Arm
- Left & Right Leg
- Front & Back Loin Cloths
- Angry Face
- Impact Crater
Now Catalogue your Metal Pieces:
- Several Whelps including one standing on a rock
- Many, many chains
- Rock Chin Guard
And finally the extras:
- Mountain King Damage Spiral Card
- Mountain King Stat Card
- 120 MM Gargantuan Base
- Mountain King Instructions
As illustrated, make sure you have these:
Obviously the 120 milimeter Gargantuan base is necessary, although you'll notice 3 Power cards instead of 2. The one on the right has a Gold Rim around it's portrait. I received that card when I bought the Mountain King at PAX 2012 and the cashier mentioned that it was gold because it's a Con Exclusive. I'm not going to complain! Finally, the instructions will help you put this thing together, especially in regards to correct Whelp and Chain attachment!
Before I continue, I'm going to quote a great paragraph on working with Resin from Privateer Press' article on their Trollbloods War Wagon assembly:
"It is important to note that resin dust can be toxic if inhaled, so be sure to wear a dust mask when working with resin parts. An N-95 respirator is best. Using a hobby knife to scrape the mold lines creates less dust than sanding or filing, so it is the recommended method. There are times when sanding is necessary, however, and for this we recommend a wet sanding technique. Wet sanding is done with sandpaper dipped in water. The water helps trap the resin dust so that it does not release into the air. Sandpaper intended for wet sanding has a backing of plastic rather than paper, which would deteriorate in water. When you are finished cleaning the resin parts, wash them with soap and water to remove any excess resin dust and to ensure there is no mold release agent remaining on the part, which might prevent paint from adhering to the model."
So I've bolded the important parts! Please, please follow these instructions when operating with ANY kind of Resin. There are no exceptions to this to my knowledge. Resin dust even in small quantities can be extremely hazardous, so don't take any chances. In addition, I really did find the use of a model knife to be superior 95% of the time when working with the Mountain King. There were very few mold lines on the Arms, Legs, Loin Cloths, Face, Mountainous Back and Crater and thankfully, they were quick and easy to clean up. The Torso took quite a bit more work than I expected simply because the mold line was where the skin lining met up with where the Mountainous Back would join to. Here's a picture to illustrate:
Take your time and be thorough with your knife about removing this excess resin and making the Torso clean and presentable. You don't want to put it all together and find out after painting just how visible mold lines can be! Here's another picture to show the work in progress of removing that flash lining around the Torso:
And a third picture that shows a distinct mold line crossing the back of the Torso. This was pretty noticeable on my piece, so some cutting and filing was necessary to grind it down. This picture shows the work:
Now, having removed the mold lines from all the Resin pieces, there are some issues/solutions with the Head and the Legs/Feet that need to be addressed. First, take a look the MK's Head. Make sure you flatten down the back so that it contacts evenly. Also, you'll notice two grooves on the top which slot into nubs in the interior of the collar on the Torso. And yes, that is a WIP Extreme Dire Troll Mauler in the background who is almost complete at publication of this article! The following picture reveals the sanding/filing necessary to flatten it out:
Now, look at the bottom of the feet and ensure that they are flat and level as they can be by filing them down. You can determine this by simply pushing each of the legs together and judging how well the two pieces sit on a flat surface. Blue Tack can help with this. Also, take a look at the MK's beautiful toes. No, they're not pedicured, but you'll notice resin between some of the toes as evidenced in the following picture (and also the mold lines that need to be removed so the foot is evenly surfaced):
This picture shows the top of the foot and what I meant by having resin between the toes:
It's easy to fix this by simply cutting out the triangular wedges between as many toes as you can. Take your time with this as well to have the foot look more realistic when you're all done. The following pictures shows what the other foot looked after I removed the resin between the toes and evened out the surface (mostly):
Now that you've cleaned up all the Resin pieces and ensured they will fit together well, we move on to the fun part of the tutorial where this big guy gets put together. First, file and clean up the Mountain King's Rock Chin Guard. When that's done and you've tested out a snug fit, use your super glue and attach it to the collar on the Torso.
Moving on, your efforts to fit together and even out the Legs and Feet will come to fruition when you glue them together. Do NOT; I repeat, do NOT glue the feet to the large base. You don't want to commit to putting the model on the base yet, as it will make painting the underside an exercise in frustration (and No, I'm smart enough to not be talking from personal experience!). Just glue each Leg to the other and then glue each Loin Cloth as shown in the photos below:
You'll notice on the back the mold line above the loin cloth slightly to the left. Feel free to fill this in with Green Stuff/Putty now or later. Now, let the two Legs and Loin Cloths dry and grab the Left Arm and Impact Crater. Clear off flash and then file down and even off the bottom of the Impact Crater so that it's perfectly flat. Then glue the Impact Crater to the bottom of the Left Arm. In addition to the feet, the Impact Crater will be a third contact point to balance out the Mountain King. Finally, glue the Left Arm to the Torso as shown in the following picture (he's lopsided for drying purposes):
Here's two more pictures to reveal the joint between the Left Arm and Torso and the gap that will need to be filled with Green Stuff/Putty soon:
And to conclude Part 1 of the Mountain King Assembly, place the Torso atop the Legs (DON'T glue yet!) and ensure that the Impact Crater is level with the Feet so that the model rests evenly with minimal to no wobble. If you're not confident about the MK's stability, use Green Stuff/Putty underneath which ever contact point(s) are not as flat as they should be and either leave them where you want them on the base or attach them to the Legs/Impact crater. When you're ready to attach to the two combined pieces, it should look something like this:
Looking good eh? Richard's Hobby Tutorials: Trollbloods Mountain King Assembly Part 2 will finish off the assembly process by attaching the Mountainous Back, Right Arm and then all the dirty Whelps and their chains to keep this beast tied up when he's too hungry for his own good!