Custom Atlas
MechWarrior Dark Ages

    Well, as soon as the new Atlas design started showing up, people were immediately out complaining about it. And, I must admit, it's got a lot of problems. The spiky bits look too "tacked on", the colors are iffy and the guns are mounted horribly. So I decided to fix it, once I traded for a slightly broken one (a gun had fallen off).

    The first step was to take everything apart. I pulled off the spiky bits, cut away the tusks and the skull kneepad, removed the other gun, popped off the canopy of the cockpit (which was fogged anyway) and pulled off the left arm at the elbow joint. And, of course, I popped out the heat dial and main dial.

    Once I'd stripped it down, it was time to build back up. Using bits of sheet plastic I built new knee armor. Then I cut the elbow joint so I could remount the left arm in a better position. Finally, with a combination of sheet plastic, plastic rods and Squadron putty I built up new gun mounts on the sides of the forearms. I then decorated these mounts a bit. I initially planned to make the semi-cylinders on the mounts an ammo feed, but then I realized that only IndustrialMODs should have exposed ammo. So now they're cooling tubes.

    In preparation for painting, I placed dabs of poster-tack over the figure's three decals to help mask them. Yeah, I know they make a dedicated masking fluid for that, but I already OWN poster-tack.

    After some shilly-shallying and false starts, I decided to go for an olive drab base with blue accents (like the other Swordsworn Uniques). I found that a bottle of gold paint I'd bought a while back had rusted into a much darker metallic color appropriate for the metalbits here. I did end up using some gunmetal anyway, mainly on the cockpit and legs. Once I was done with all the painting (using lighter olive and blue for drybrushed highlights and a dark brown wash on the legs), I added some rust markings (mainly to the legs) and muddied up the feet. Then I sprayed the whole thing with matte coat to protect the paint. It's not as matte as I'd like, though.

The Pictures

Prelim 1
Prelim 2
Prelim 3
    I took a few pictures before I finished the painting, just to show off some of the stuff. At this point I had only put the base green on the legs, and I hadn't added the rust. You can see in a few pics that my masking left some marks as the paint pooled in the cracks.
Cockpit Closeup     Here's a closeup shot of the cockpit. The figure is only half a centimeter long, so I wasn't able to get too much detail on it, but at least it's not a featureless blob now.
Left Side Right Side Rear View Legs Closeup The rest of the pics.

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