Tuesday, 8 March 2011

How to magnetise your Blood Angels assault squads

Basic Tutorial here for you, how to magnetise your Blood Angel assault squads so that they can be both jump infantry and swoop down in some DOA action as well as ride around in those razorbacks the interwebs love so much, without having to create different models for each job.  In addition to this they are much easier to paint without their packs on.

So to the pro's out there this is I'm sure extremely easy a process, but for everyone else keep reading! To begin with you will need your model, some clippers, a craft knife, magnets and green stuff.

 Meet Bob, the flamer marine hoping to get himself painted and magnetised shortly.

The magnets I use are rare earth magnets, easily bought off ebay and in this case are 1mm wide by 4mm in diameter.  To begin with you will need to slice off the base of the backpack on the marine's body.

Here you can see the chunk I cut off, don't go right to the top as its not needed.  Once you have this part removed you can move onto the packpack/jump pack.

The Pack's are much trickier as they are smaller and don't just slice off like the marine section, you have to essentially chop at them with the clippers, don't worry if you make a mess though as you can fill any gaps with green stuff, plus this section will be flat against the marine's back and invisible anyway especially once painted.

Now you have your chopped up marines (and a load of plastic chunks and scrapings) you need to break out your green stuff, unless you aren't aware, green stuff is sold by games workshop and many other retailers that deal in miniature collecting. 
Green stuff is modelling putty that comes in 2 different colours and must be combined (usually yellow and blue) to make a green substance (hence green stuff).  Some things to note, it's easy to make too much, a little goes a long way and you can always make more so don't go overboard like I always do and end up throwing little lumps of it away. 

Secondly it can stick to your hands if you are not careful or its cheap green stuff, all you need to do however to avoid this is to slightly wet your fingers, that way it wont stick.

 Using a bit of water means your green stuff wont stick to your hands, or arms, or partner and im pretty sure most girls wont find mixing green stuff romantic in the slightest.

So now you have your green stuff pull off a little bit and roll it into a ball, then flatten it out and stick it to the back of the marine, if it fits perfectly into the space you created you got enough, if its overlapping you got too much in there, get rid of some or it will look a mess.

Now you want to get one of your magnets, just shove this into the green stuff which will displace some of it to the sides, simply wrap that around and on top of the magnet, sealing it away in a nice little package.  Once this is done it should look something like this -

You now need to do the same for the backpack or jump pack which is essentially the same process and should in the end look something like this -

One thing that's important to note is to make sure the magnets are flat and level with the pack or else they will sit weird with each other and look stupid on your marine.  Of even more importance is polarity.  Polarity is the way magnets work, they have a side that pulls and a side that pushes away, you need to match up the side the pulls on the outside of the marine and the outside of the backpack, otherwise they won't attract each other and instead of having a jump marine you will have a pack that flies off in another direction when you try and put it on.

And so here's the finished article, ready for a good undercoating as soon as the green stuff dries (is definitely good to make sure you leave it for a good few hours or overnight so it can set right).

That ends my tutorial on magnetising jump packs, I hope you found it helpful, next time I'll be going step by step on how I paint bob to match the rest of my army.


  1. When you pick up the assault marines, do you sometimes end up only holding the jumppack?

    How do you normally separate magnets? by sliding them off each other right?

    You can prevent the magnets n the jumppack and assaultmarine from sliding off each other by putting in a pin above the magnet in the jumppack and drilling a little hole above the magnet in the back of the marine.

  2. The magnets are really strong so if you pick up the model by the pack it wont fall off but does sometimes spin around.

    They do just pull apart quite easily though and dont generally need sliding because of the green stuff covering them, reduces the magnets power a bit.