When the Indomitus set was announced, I knew I wanted to do try my hand at a few conversions to give them more of a Dark Angels flavour. The one I was most interested in was the Bladeguard Ancient. Here’s what I came up with and how it’s done.
The most obvious change is the banner which comes from the Space Marine Command Squad. There’s no need to modify the banner part itself, but you do need to cut the top off the banner pole carried by the Ancient. Do this just above the spikes where it makes a T with the top of the banner. File the spikes off – this will give it a better fit with the banner itself later. Don’t glue it at this stage or the whole thing will be a pain to paint. Keep the banner separate and glue it after painting.
Hint: After painting, I used a craft knife to scratch the paint off around the contact points so that the plastic glue had a better surface to stick to.
The top of the banner comes from the Dark Angels Veterans kit and it’s just glued on top of the banner.
The banner’s design is a transfer from the Forge World Dark Angels Legion Transfer Sheet. To fit, this needed cutting down both horizontally and vertically – easily done with a craft knife. Dry fit this before committing to putting the transfer on, just to be sure the size is right. I had to take a craft knife to the sides after sticking it on to trim the overlap.
The Forge World transfers are very good (and I highly recommend them) and mould to the shape of the surface they’re applied to quite well. If it doesn’t behave as you expect, try some Vallejo Decal Medium (or softener). When I was happy with the fit, I used Vallejo Decal Fix to fix it in place. To blend the edges of the transfer with the rest of the banner, I painted over them with Vallejo Game Color Black.
The censer in the Ancient’s left hand is also from the Dark Angels Veterans kit. This was a simple matter of cutting the skeletal hand that the Ancient is carrying where it meets the chain. The censer glues right in its place.
That’s all there is to it. Let me know if you try this out or if you’ve had a go at converting some of the new kits.