Category: Space Ships

WIP: Zeus Weapons Modules

Posted by Mangozac on January 27, 2015

So for a while now I’ve been promising some people that I’ll complete the set of Zeus weapons modules. Truth be told I made a start on these before I went to Europe in mid-2014, but it’s only over the 2014 Christmas break that I got around to finishing them.

Overall I’m pleased – I think I’ve managed to fit the Zeus aesthetic appropriately. I went for something different with the ball turrets, although I think the barrels may be a little too long – I might shorten them for the production versions…


Here’s what they look like fitted to a Zeus Light Cruiser:


I’ll make some production moulds and cast up a heap of them soon. Keep an eye out on here for the announcement of when they’re available for purchase 😉

Space Ship Weapons Modules

Posted by Mangozac on August 6, 2014

So here’s a little something else I’ve been working on recently: some alternative weapons modules for the Zeus Cruiser/Light Cruiser.

I originally set out to make a beam turret deck but somewhere along the line made some design decisions that I didn’t like so it got converted into a hanger bay. I also built up a triple-barrel beam turret (using the barrels I made for the Strike Cruiser Conversion Kit) but it turned out a little too big to use on the weapons modules.

Weapons module

But all is not lost! I’ve moulded up the hanger bay and have sanded much of the structure off a resin copy. I’ll use this as a base for a new beam turret deck 😉

Completed Secret Project: Zeus Cruiser

Posted by Mangozac on April 26, 2014

Zeus CC 1You read it correctly: not a Light Cruiser but a full blown, cruiser size, Zeus pattern ship design!

This project began following prompting from friends that I need to round out the Zeus fleet with a distinctive cruiser model, different from just slapping a Zeus prow on a plastic GW Imperial cruiser. Scratchbuilding larger ships takes a significant amount of time, something I just don’t have at the moment!

At around that time I was contacted by a fan of my work who goes by the screen name Armand. He wanted to share with me some pictures of Battlefleet Gothic style models that he was creating in 3D and some of which he was even having printed! I was impressed with his work and had an idea: why not get him to create me a 3D model to use for the Zeus Cruiser? I have contacts for getting high resolution 3D prints done economically so it would definitely be feasible!

Over the following weeks Armand and I exchanged many emails as he gradually put together the model and I gave him feedback on certain design decisions. He came up with some really cool design ideas also! There was a bit of a hold up as the printer I had originally planed to use was too busy so I ended up trying out another printing service. The print finally arrived this week so I wasted no time in moulding it up and casting a copy!

Zeus CC 3

Zeus CC 1

Zeus CC 2

Zeus CC 6

Zeus CC 4

Zeus CC 5

I’m very pleased with the result! As you can see I’m using my original Zeus Prow sculpt and the weapons batteries I did for the Zeus Light Cruiser with the new hull. Also note the size comparison with the standard Imperial cruiser: length is quite similar but the Zeus Cruiser is a lot more streamlined.

Thanks to Armand for his fantastic 3D modelling work – it certainly made this project a lot easier than it would have otherwise be!

Enjoy! Following tomorrow will be a Centurion project update!

Gothicomp 2014 Has Started

Posted by Mangozac on April 18, 2014

Gothicomp, the annual Battlefleet Gothic painting competition is on again! I’m providing a pool of prizes for all of the categories so get busy people! I especially want to see some scratchbuilds and conversions.

Check out the announcement on the Specialist Arms Forums and help spread the word.

Completed: Zeus Frigate

Posted by Mangozac on March 16, 2013

So it’s finally done! This model is pretty insanely detailed considering that the overall length is 40mm ignoring the prow cannon. I have to say I began to worry about my sanity while making up those tiny arches flanking the rear section of the hull! As you can see there are two prow styles: a standard prow and one with an underslung lance and upper weapon battery turret.

Pretty pleased with the result, and definitely glad to get this one out of the way (it’s been a year since I started it, although work on the model was only performed sporadically over the course of about 2-3 months).

RA buddies Vaaish and Xeones want me to do a Space Marine prow variant, to which I’ve agreed, but that won’t be for a few months (those guys are flat out with other projects for a while anyway). They’ll have to send me some concept art first though! In any case pertinent updates will be posted here!




WIP: Zeus Frigate 6

Posted by Mangozac on March 9, 2013

Sometimes projects go to a schedule, but most times they don’t. I had planned to get this finished a few weeks ago, but then the screwing around changing the broadside cannon designs, etc. dragged things out a bit. Oh well after some sculpting last night it’s now 99% done! All that’s left is the details atop the lance prow.

As you can see, the following pictures show the lance prow variant progress. I used my Sherline lathe to turn up the lance barrel and then decorated it with styrene and putty. Whilst sculpting the eagle I was cursing myself for not simply taking a cast of the first prow and hacking it up, but I guess practice make perfect! That said, I still loathe sculpting and don’t feel that my skills at sculpting eagle prows are improving much. I still love working with the Procreate putty for this kind of thing – leaves Greenstuff for dead!




I’ve got a few Saturday morning errands to run, but I’m planning to finish things off and hopefully even get it into silicone this afternoon! So the next post should be pics of the resin casts…

WIP: Zeus Frigate 5

Posted by Mangozac on February 21, 2013

I haven’t been feeling happy with the weapons battery design so last night I threw some styrene together to try out the more common square cannon design. The hull area around the cannons still needs a lot of work and detailing, but I do much prefer the square cannons themselves. They really make this ship look like a scaled down version of the Zeus Light Cruiser. I know some of my followers prefer the domed cannon designs but I think this has sold me…


WIP: Zeus Frigate 4

Posted by Mangozac on February 12, 2013

This project isn’t dead! Yeah I’ve been distracted by Warhound assembly, but I have been sneaking in some styrene work in-between 😉

Just a quick update to show how things are looking now with the fattened forward hull. The entire ship is looking quite beefy now – quite a contrast to the “lanky” nature of the GW frigates. The other side of the forward hull still needs a lot of fine detailing. I should make up the other three cannon turret domes on the lathe tonight…



WIP: Zeus Frigate 3

Posted by Mangozac on January 29, 2013

Well despite the wild weather we’ve had over the Australia Day long weekend I managed to fit in a little bit of work on the Frigate; namely making a new prow with better proportions. The new prow is a lot thinner and slightly shorter. I had intended for it to be not as tall also, but somewhere along the line that didn’t happen (and I didn’t realise until after I’d sculpted the eagle). The height wasn’t the main problem anyway.

Despite the new prow I’m still not convinced though and I think I’ve worked out the problem: the upper half of the midships section (where the cannon domes are mounted) is too skinny. Above the cannons the design tapers to a really narrow cross section and this causes the whole section to appear skinnier than it really is. So I’m toying with some concepts for how I can bulk out this top level which I think will make all the difference 😉

The path to perfection is never simple!

Frigate_WIP_6 Frigate_WIP_7 Frigate_WIP_8

WIP: Zeus Frigate

Posted by Mangozac on January 24, 2013

I made a bit more progress over the last couple of nights (would have been more on schedule if damn real life didn’t keep interrupting!). The other side fin has been completed and the standard prow has had a fair bit of work done – I’ve sculpted the eagle head and one of the wings.

The last update showed the prow just after it had had putty applied. It made the prow look much too big and bulky but after it had cured the prow was sanded down and looked much more appropriate. The problem is that with the addition of the wings sculpted on the prow it has bulked up a bit more. I think it looks good side on (some may disagree), however from higher angles the prow looks too wide compared to the relatively skinny hull. This far in I really don’t want to have to rework the prow that dramatically (it would require resculpting the eagle too) to shave off some of the width, but I suspect I don’t have a choice. I’ll deliberate on it…