I said I was working on something big for the Ultramarines – and I was not mucking around!

Behold… the Astraeus Superheavy Grav Tank…

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I have had this lying around in a box for some time now but, having made the decision to have some armoured vehicles a bit heavier than a Rhino in my growing Ultramarines force, I may have gone too far in the other direction.

Anyway, I had done one of these massive tanks before, for the Flesh Tearers, a ways back and, I am glad to say, I learnt a few things about tackling this beast.

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First off, do not attached the repulsor plates until you have completely painted the hull, and paint the plates separately. Normally, I don’t like working with sub-assemblies in this way, as the model always ends up a little bit structurally weaker than it could be. Also, it is just a pain in the rear to be building a model after it is painted, as the building was all supposed to be completed before the paint when on… that might just be a personal idiosyncrasy.

If I were to do a third Astraeus (!), I would also leave the engines off until painted too, as those cooling fins make access a tad difficult.

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Other than that, however, this model is a doddle, and it is just the immense surface area that might slow you down – the shading and highlighting of the hull takes a good long while. On the flipside, the other colours are done in a flash, and do not take noticeably longer than your average Predator…

With the Astraeus done, I had been planning to dive in with some more Ultramarines squads and vehicles, but it looks like I will be taking a brief hiatus from them to attend to the new Aeronauticus Imperialis range – I have a hankering to do a full aerial campaign, and those models look quick to paint up.

I will just be finishing a Mechanicus terrain piece that I have had lying around for a few months and then be diving into some aircraft. Hopefully I will be able to post pictures of them this time next week!

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