Saturday, November 27, 2010

Tutorial: Long Barrelled Heavy Bolters

I thought I would post a quick tutorial on how I made my long barrelled heavy bolters for my Valkyrie.

First, you'll need the following.

-A Heavy Bolter to convert
-Some 3/16" plasticard tube
-Some 1/8" plasticard tube (it should fit inside the bigger tube)
-Some 1/4" in plasticard tube
-Some very fine, about 1/32" plasticard round stock.
-A hobby knife with a new blade
-A pin vise drill with a 1/8" and 1/16" bit.

Step 0: Here are the items and a finished one to compare:

Step 1: First, cut the barrel and round bit off the front of the heavy bolter, its should be flat. Next remove the spine between the front and rear sights of the heavy bolter. Remove the small step behind the rear sight and cut a bit off the left and the right side of the top portion of the front sight to make it more distinct. ( the modified front sight is easier to see in Step 3, so don't worry) This is also a great time to remove any mold lines.

Step 2: Using the smaller drill bit, drill a short pilot hole in the very center of where the barrel was.

Step 3: Now using the 1/8" drill bit, drill out the center of where the barrel was. My drill bit is just a bit thinner than the original barrel and works quite well. This hole only needs to be about 1/16" to 1/8" deep, just deep enough to hold the barrel when it is glued in place. Notice how the top of the front sight is thinner, this is what we were working on during the first step.

Step 4: Next we need to build the new barrel. Cut a section of the 1/8" tube to the desired length. I use 1 inch. Then cut a section of the 3/16" tube to make the barrel end / flash hider. I use 1/4", but you may have to experiment to see what looks good to you. Glue the 3/16" tube onto the end of the 1/8" tube, ensuring that if there is an uneven end, that is is outward so that you can trim it later. I take the drill and hollow out the barrel just a little bit once the glue is dry.

Step 5: Once the barrel is mostly dry, glue it into the hole you drill earlier into the heavy bolter. Ensure that it is straight from the top and side view.

Step 6: Carefully, cut a thin ring from the 1/4" tube and glue it to the back side of the rear sight block, where you cut out the piece in Step 1. Ensure the ring is about twice the thickness of your fine round stock.

Step 7: Cut a small piece of the fine round stock and carefully glue it into place horizontally. Then do the same with the other piece but vertically. Nudge them until they appear to form a cross.

Finished view: So there it is, a long barrelled heavy bolter with an anti-aircraft sight.

Final notes:
- I used superglue, feel free to use whatever you feel most comfortable with.
- The guns look just fine without the modified sights, if they are giving you too much trouble consider not installing them. In fact the sights will be pretty hard to see most of the time.
- I'm sorry I don't have the metric sizes for the tubes.
- I got all of my tubes and plasticard from my local hobby store. All of the tubes were in a variety pack. I've lost the original packaging, but it was either Evergreen or Gale Force 9, I think, maybe.
- Please feel free to leave comments or ask questions.

Editorial response: Apparently this tutorial was used as an example of potentially "modelling for advantage" on the The 11th Company Forum. I expect I should be pleased just to be noticed. Anyhow, I find it unlikely that anyone would actually get a use out of the 1" that my conversion adds to a gun that has a 36" range. Heck, with the size of the vehicle and the typical game board, there is little that wouldn't be in range anyway. But if you were converting your heavy bolters for that purpose, I publicly remove my support from you.

Crap, I wonder what they think of my chin mounted LasCannons on my vendetta?

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