Conversion Guide: 40k Books

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Justin Kase


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Recently (as in, sometime in 2004) I was working on making my own Chaplains and Librarians from the plastic marines, and was looking for good books to use on the minis (and most of the decent 40k novels were a little too large and looked silly hanging from their belts - though they made great cover), so I set about making books for them. I tried to keep it as simple as possible, so as to make my life easier, and so I could spend more time agonizing over how to paint them. I also wanted to limit the supplies to nothing too exotic, so I could easily produce as many books as I wanted (I had started to think about having a smaller than average book hanging on all the officer's belts - something like an inspirational hymn book, Chicken Soup for the Marine's Soul).While I am sure I am not the first to come up with the idea, I thought I'd share to process and pics for those out there that have been looking for a way to do the same thing.So, I present "The Book Tutorial" (aka: A quick way to make decent books for your minis):Ingredients
  • Plasticard/Polystyrene (the .015 x .250" / .4x6.3mm Strips work exceptionally well)
  • Green Stuff (or any other modeling filler - aside from glue)
  • Exacto Knife & or Modeling Tool
  • A Coin
Method1 - Get a piece of Plasticard; the pre-cut strips are nice, since they will give you a consistent size for the book.[gal_img]1040[/gal_img]2 - Cut a strip off that is about "(~12mm) long[gal_img]1041[/gal_img]3 - Fold the strip in half over a coin, this allows you to fold the strip without creating a crease, giving the spine a curve. Alternatively, you can cut the strip in half at the 'fold' to make a squared off book.[gal_img]1042[/gal_img]4 - Mix up some Green Stuff (GS)[gal_img]1043[/gal_img]5 - Squish the GS Definition: Green Stuffin between the fold, then reopen the book to cut down the GS Definition: Green Stuffto be rectangular (I use a modeling tool rather then an exacto for this). Be sure to cut in from the edge a bit, so the pages are recessed from the cover, do it a little more then you think you would need, as you will be carving pages into the edge next.[gal_img]1044[/gal_img]6 - Close the cover of the book again and set it aside to allow the GS Definition: Green Stuffto cure a bit (15-30 minutes). I will often stand a metal mini partially on the book to help keep the cover closed. (Actually, metal terminators work well)[gal_img]1045[/gal_img]7 - Next, start from the center and score lines around the GS,Definition: Green Stuff start from one side and move around the front and then the other side. I will usually score the line on a side, and then use the edge that cuts through the front to guide me for that line. This keeps the lines even so they look more like individual pages, rather then random lines.(You'll have to use your imagination for the missing pics - Sorry)8 - I then sit the book aside (usually wedged under a metal mini again) until it dries. After it dries you may still find that the cover 'pops' off, use a little super glue (very little) in the center of the GS Definition: Green Stuffand press the cover back down.(See 6)9 - Then you can add GS Definition: Green Stuffdetails to the book. I usually GS Definition: Green Stuffand detail the binding, add straps, eagle wings and so on. If you don't want to GS,Definition: Green Stuff you can also cut smaller strips of Plasticard and use those to make straps and the like. Alternatively, you can just paint your details.[gal_img]1046[/gal_img]Gallery image
[gal_img]1048[/gal_img]Not sure how clear my books are, but you might be able to see the bindings have grooves cut in them to give them more of a classic leather bound look. An eagle's wing is the clasp for the one book (you may even be able to discern the tiny skull lock binding the covers), while the other has a standard strap and buckle. The tiny book is going to be the basis of the inspirational book the sergeants carry.




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