Ever since the release of the Space Marine Centurion models I’ve wanted to have a go at fixing what I can’t help but feel is a flawed model. The concept is good, and all the parts are there with a good degree of detail, but the standard models lack a certain something that makes them look… well to be honest I can’t find a suitably funny and accurate analogy… but lets face it they look awful.
As anyone who has seen my previous conversion work will know I always like to start with a suitable piece of artwork to draw inspiration from, and this project is no different. I started by comparing some sample artwork to the actual models and seeing if anything stood out.
It doesn’t take a genius to see where the problem comes from.
When I decided I wanted to come up with a tutorial fix for the Centurion models I knew I wanted to make it as accessible as possible, with no need for sculpting skills. What I present here is a starting point, but you should feel free to modify the technique and go all out with extra detail if you can.
Please note that this is my first stab at Centurions, and there is definite room for improvement, and no doubt I’ll work on that at some point.
What you will need.
A Centurion model.
A Space Marine helmet or bare head (Centurion heads are rather ugly).
Some thin plasticard (about 1mm thick will suffice).
and your usual tools.
For the most part the torso of the model isn’t really in need of a fix. What I present here is a small tweak.
The bulk of the torso goes together normally. I chose to trim away the bit at the shoulder joint, it’s not a lot but it does narrow the shoulders a little. I also cut the ends off of the collar part so that when the pads are added I could get them to fit a bit more snuggly with the torso.
The greenstuff in this conversion is entirely for use as spacers and to join parts together, no sculpting required. In some cases you can just glue or use plastic spacers cut from sprue or leftover bitz, but I find a blob of greenstuff to be most versatile. Because the greenstuff moulds to the two surfaces you want to join together perfectly it creates a really good bond when superglued together. Once it’s cured you can pull it apart easily and glue everything in place.
Where the back of the collar piece attaches to the torso add a small ball of greenstuff to raise the back end up slightly. Put a ball of greenstuff under the helmet so it is slightly higher up but also allows you to angle the head exactly how you want it.
Once the greenstuff under the collar has cured firm, attach the shoulder pads, again using small balls of greenstuff so you have something solid to glue the pads to. You can see on the pic above how I’ve tried to position the pads so at the back they almost touch the exhausts and at the front the little curved recess at the corner fits nicely over the torso weapon mounting.
So far this is only a subtle change from the standard model but it does just tighten the whole design up a little. For me at least it’s far more pleasing.
Now we get to the bit that makes all the difference. The actual height of the legs is only about an extra 7mm, not much but enough to give the model a more humanoid shape.
First up, you need to remove the ball joint from the bottom of the power armour legs. Hack them off and leave the underside of the feet clean and flat.
For the next step take the main body of the Siege Drills and cut away two thirds of it. The left overs were then glued to the bottom of the feet.
Next, separate the top and bottom parts of the front leg armour, and cut away any icon details on the lower legs so that all four pieces are smooth. You’ll also want to remove the central part of the midsection armour, leaving a couple of pieces for the hips.
Now we get to the key part of the conversion. First cut two small pieces of plasticard that will fully cover the lower leg armour, with plenty of extra around the edges. It helps to bend/curl the plasticard before super gluing them on. Next up, trim the edges of the plasticard with a scalpel, following the basic outline of the armour but with a few extra millimetres on each edge (except the bottom edge, that needs to be cut to match the existing plastic edge of the armour).
You now have a pair of enlarged lower leg armour plates. Attach the top part of the leg armour to it’s original intended spot and the new lower leg pieces (using greenstuff balls again) so that the knee joint underneath is slightly visible through the gap. Once that’s cured, attach the feet, again with greenstuff, angled to your liking. On the pics below I cut away at the side part of the feet to make the whole part a bit more rectangular than square, again personal preference.
Finally the hip plates are glued in place, and arms attached (some clipping may be required at the shoulder).
Regarding weapons, I personally hate the massive weapons slung under the arms. I would opt to reduce their size (as with the heavy bolters above, I’m planning to add an ammo belt feed like the devastator heavy bolter) or shoulder mount the weapons. As battlefield effectiveness is less important to me than good looking models I will most likely make mine the Assault varient, and give them suped-up Power Fists that will count as Siege Drills, with melta guns or flamer mounted over the shoulders.
There’s a lot of room for improvement, starting with the back of the legs, but I’m so far excited about what else I can do with these. In future I’ll do a version 2 of this tutorial that will give a more refined and detailed model but require a bit of sculpting and extra effort and parts.