Monday, June 20, 2011

Heresy Era Thousand Sons - Mk. 1 Rhino/Predator kits, first builds

As I've felt that I've made great strides in painting the Dark Eldar, I rewarded myself with some build time! Over the last year or so I've been gathering bits and pieces for use in the Heresy-Era Thousand Sons that I have planned. Recently I picked up some rather brilliant resin add-on kits from Blood and Skulls Industry to turn a current-era Rhino into a nice approximation of the old Mk. 1 version.

I ordered five of the Rhino upgrade kits (which are a limited run not sold on the eBay store, contact the seller for info and availability) as well as a trio of Predator kits (Also known as "Liberator" turrets and sponsons on the Blood and Skulls Industry site), and set about cleaning up the extremely manageable flash and gave 'em a good wash. The Rhino kit consists of two replacement side plates, a new front plate, a pair of hatches each mounting a bolter(ish), and the iconic round doors and exposed exhausts. The Predator Kits had a pair of side sponsons designed to interface with the Rhino kit side plates, and a rounded top turret very reminiscent of the original Mk.1 Predator kit. The sponsons and turret also have pre-moulded spaces for rare-earth magnets for ease of weapon swaps.

Unlike the Chapterhouse kits, these kits did require a bit of work on the modeller's part to prepare the Rhino for the side plates. This means the existing exhausts must be cut away. I used a very thin-bladed and tiny-toothed hobby saw, which for the most part cleanly cut away the exhausts. After that it just needed a bit of a sanding to smooth out the various rivets and the side plates are mounted flush to the newly-flat panel..

Once that was taken care of however, the rest of the kit goes together like a dream. I decided to go ahead and permanently mount the Lascannons and Autocannon armaments to the two turrets, but will be magnetizing the side sponson guns (onse I get a pack of the proper-sized magnets). The one thing that I do really like about the chapterhouse kit that isn't included in these kits are the front and rear grillwork that really help drive the Mk. 1 look home. Luckily I have several sets to pull bits from.

I realized that one of the things I failed to buy prior to the recent price hikes are, unfortunately, enough Rhino kits to apply these upgrade kits to. That being the case, I decided I'd just start off with one Rhino and one Predator until I can take out a bank loan to buy another three Rhinos...


  1. I've seen those kits around, but not in use. They look great on those rhinos. Good luck with the loan to get the rest of your Rhinos!

  2. Very nice work! That does look a delightful kit. Commiserations on the financial side of things, too!

  3. Awesome man, they actually look great. The Heresy era conversion stuff I have seen before generally looks a bit crap, but that all seems to be spot on scale and detail wise to fit in with the current plastic kits.

    Who actually makes these kits though?

    I'd be keen to get a couple.


  4. Scrap that, a bit of searching and I found it on the ebay machine.

  5. i cannot find the damn things anywhere. can anyone post where to buy them?

  6. Man they look so badass.
    Taking out a loan to pay for Rhinos, priceless =p

  7. THose kits look great! I'm looking forward to seeing your paintjob on these bad boys!

  8. Thanks folks!

    @The Inner Geek - Indeed. I'd seen the kits but never assembled, but I knew I had to have 'em!

    @Red - That was what drew me to them as well, they have the 'old look', but maintain the current era scale.

    @Atreides - I've added a link to the seller's eBay store to the post. The Rhino upgrade kits are a limited run, and aren't sold on eBay but you may be able to get some direct from the seller if you contact him there.

    @LuckyNo.5 - I'm itching to paint them as well. They're going to be part of a Heresy-Era Thousand Sons force, so it's going to be more Crimson and Gold...

  9. Hmm, those hatch and exhaust sets are just what my plasticard Rhinos need to look a little more legit. I'll have to look into those.

  10. been very interested in pre heresy thousand sons recently and like what you have done here.