Finally, I have started on the Stormtalon. The first step doesn’t seem like much, when you look at it, but it’s something I’ve never tried before: Magnetizing part of a model. I did this to take advantage of the weapon loads the Stormtalon could carry. At a Canadian pricetag of $54.50 plus tax, I wanted to make sure I got my money’s worth.
Curious as to how I did it?
Well the first step was order some rare earth magnets. I purchased mine online from miniwargaming.com, a large Canadian online retailer which also happens to be conveniently close to me. I went with a “combo pack” of 50 3/32″ x 1/16″ disc magnets and two 3/32″ drill bits (that’s a 2.38mm diameter for my fellow Canucks). I didn’t want to improvise with drilling and accidentally make the hole too big.
I wanted to get one size smaller (1/16″ x 1/32″), and was worried that these might be too big. As it turns out, this size is right on the money for most of the Stormtalon weapon pod options.
It turns out the hollows in the Skyhammer missile nose cones on the underside of the front piece are just a hair’s breadth–literally–smaller than 3/32″ of an inch across. I sized the hole by dropping in the drill bit and giving it a twist or two manually. The magnet fit in tightly, no glue required. This was fortunate, as I dropped the first magnet it just to see how well it fit and I couldn’t get it back out again.
Now, you’ve probably noticed that I’d already assembled the weapon pod body. I realized this was a mistake the moment I tried to judge where the magnet on the pod body should go. Fortunately, the Emperor provided me with a flash of inspiration.
I painted the back of the magnet red*, then put the front piece on the pod body to mark where I should drill. I then dabbed a bit more paint on the pod body mark and put on the Typhoon missile launcher piece so it could get marked. This wasn’t necessary for the gun mount, as I show below.
*Yes, that is the original Blood Red paint I bought before GW changed the paint pots. It still works awesomely well.
After that, it was easy peasy to get the magnet in the pod.
Next up was the “gun mount.” The mount slot’s narrowest dimension is also 3/32″ of an inch, and the end of the slot overlaps the magnet placement.
Since there was only one gun mount for both the heavy bolter and the lascannon, I put the magnet on the weapon itself. The idea was that the weapon would hold the gun mount in place.
The only serious issue I had to face came from the Typhoon missile launcher. The magnets were 1/16″ thick. While that’s really not that much, it was thicker than the base of the Typhoon launcher. In order to get the piece to stick on, I had to use something thinner, something that the magnet would grab. Fortunately, I had just the thing…
I am sooooo glad I bought that small coil of wire all those years ago. I carefully chiselled out the back of the Typhoon front piece and super-glued in two little bits of wire. The wire was, remarkably enough, still a touch too thick but it was a darned sight thinner than the magnets. I can deal with the teensy wobble, and I double anyone will notice this front piece sits a little higher at one end.
I repeated the process for the starboard pod, and now both the pod bodies are ready to be mounted on the fuselage.
Next up: The assault cannon chin mount and an idea about those wee wings on the engines.