Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Upgrading 6mm GW Rhinos to Predators

I have a decent number of GW's Epic 40K Rhinos.  These are 6mm scale APCs.  I would like to add some Predators (anti-tank and anti-infantry tanks) to my force, but their availability is somewhat limited and they can be a bit pricey.  So I went to my fellow gamers on the Tactical Command forum and The Miniatures Page forum for solutions.

What I learned is that there are several sources for turrets that can be added to your tanks.  You can use these to modify existing tanks with different turrets to give them a different look or use them as I plan to in up-arming some APCs.

I ordered some turrets from two different suppliers via Shapeways.  The first designer was EpicMinis.  The available products include Predator turrets, Razorback turrets, Whirlwind turrets, and some Chaos turrets and spiky bits.  My order was for a Predator turret pack with 8 Annihilator sets and 4 Destructor sets.  I also ordered a pack of assorted turrets that included 4 Whirlwind turrets, 4 Twin-Lascannon Razorback turrets, 4 Twin-Hvy Bolter Razorback turrets, and 4 Anti-Air style turrets.  Each set was about $15 plus shipping.

My second designer was javelin98.  The available products from this designer are much broader.  He has lots of 3mm tank sets, some Necron models, terrain pieces, 15mm vehicle upgrades, 6mm turrets, and some other stuff.  I ordered a pack of 12 twin-gun turrets.  This pack was about $8 plus shipping.

Of the items I received, I like the EpicMinis turrets better.  The turrets from javelin98 are great, but I like that the Predator upgrade turrets match the original design well.  I will probably order more of javelin98's turrets and products in the future when I am working on other armies.

Now let me walk you through the process of turning a Rhino into a Predator for just over $1 each.

I sorted through the bits and found the correct set of turrets for my project.  Here is what I started with.

After fitting things I decided to trim off the handles on the top hatch and cut a piece of plasticard to place over the top hatch.  This lifts the turret up a bit so that it has some clearance over the pintle-mounted bolters.
Next I glued the side turrets in place and then added the top turret.  So far so good.. I was actually surprised by how well these went together.  The turrets fit very well into the contours of the Rhino and there are three points of contact for gluing.  
I did the same for 3 more tanks so now I have a small group of 4 tanks ready for paint.
Next I sprayed the models with primer.  I actually put together a few more tanks before I sprayed them.  That is me just trying to be efficient.  Razorbacks in the back, Predators in the middle, and the generic turrets in the front.  I will probably use these as Razorbacks for now.
Next up is time on the paint table to get these beasts painted and ready for the table.  I have chosen to paint my army a tan color.  I have picked out the guns and tracks with black and added a little red on the guns for detail.  I just can't help but give that nod to those old-school GW paint schemes.  Next a few markings were added.  And done.

I am very happy with the results.  I will be ordering more of these turrets and painting up many more of these for use primarily in Future War Commander games, but maybe some Epic 40k as well.  I might also try these out using Tomorrows War, but I'm not sure how that will work in 6mm.

I will be adding bases to these once I decide how I want them to look.

Let me know what you think?  Do you like the tank markings?


  1. That's great stuff, thanks for sharing, Sean!

  2. I'm glad you like them. I am very happy with the results.

    Soon I will have a playable army ready. Well less the infantry. The infantry will hit the paint table soon.

  3. Sean, would you mind if I posted a cropped pic of the ones sporting the turrets I designed to my Shapeways store? Those are the ones at the bottom of the 5th picture.


  4. Not at all. I can take some better pictures of them if you would like. I have a few that are painted. If possible could you credit my blog? If not, no problem and post away.