Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Chaos Dreadclaw Tutorial part 1

Welcome back folks for another Scratchbuilt 40k tutorial series!  This time we tackle the Dreadclaw, a model available through Forge World for about $140.  Estimated cost of the final Dreadclaw project- $6.  Lets get started, shall we?

Materials this part:
Cardstock  (20" by 30", 3/16" thickness for $2)
Plasticard (For Sale signs, 15" by 20" and 1/32" thickness for $2.22)
Wooden dowel rod (3/16" diameter will do), 4 1/16" long

Hobby cutting knife
Self healing cutting mat
Metal straight edge ruler
Hot glue gun
Hand drill

Beginning with these templates, cut the octagonal shapes out and apply the template to the cardstock.  Using your ruler and hobby knife, carefully cut each piece out of the cardstock and set aside.

Next cut the leg template out of the following template and place on the cardstock.  Again, carefully cut 4 leg pieces out of the cardstock.

Using the above images Front Panel template on the plasticard, cut 8 pieces out.  These will make up the majority of the Dreadclaw's sides.  After cutting out all these pieces, you should have a variety that looks like this (I kept the wall pieces in pairs of 2.  You don't have to do this, but I find it is easier):

Taking your largest hexagonal piece, turn it so a pair of points are at the top and bottom of your view.  Cut the piece in half and again as shown in the image below.

Spread these pieces apart from each other, leaving a gap 1/4" between them.  You may want to tape them using clear tape.  Be sure, however, to leave a clearance from the 4 points of 1/2".  This will be explained later (I promise!)

Cut a small scrap piece to place in the center of the 4 pieces, connecting them.  Using your hot glue gun, glue it into place, again leaving over 1/4" from the tips for the gaps.

Take one of the smallest octagonal pieces and again cut from the 4 corners to make the shape just like the one above.  Leave the 1/4 inch gap between the pieces, but there is no need to be worried about the distance from the tip.  Take the second hexagonal piece and glue it onto the 4 pieces as follows:

Drill a hole in the center of each of the hexagons (not the middle sized one still untouched).  Take the dowel rod and glue it to the bottom hexagon.  Place, but do not glue, the top piece into the top of the dowel rod.

This set up will be the basis for the Dreadclaw and give us a building block to work off of.

Well, that's it for today's tutorial on the Chaos Space Marine Dreadclaw.  Join me Friday for the next installment!


  1. Excellent tutorial! This is an even better idea than when you posted it seeing how FW has stopped making the dreadclaw.

    I was wondering, what is the best way to print the templates? For instance, it looks as if the largest hex should be 4.25", while Windows keeps trying to make me print it at 4.75". Any recommendations?

    1. Hey Seifer, glad you're liking the tutorial!

      I'll do some measuring today and try to add it to the tutorial here. The lesson I learned doing these tutorials is to include measurements in the templates as it seems no matter how I do them on the pages they never come out the same for everyone!

    2. Thanks a ton! I want to build a few Dreadclaws for my World Eaters for an upcoming Apoc game. Make it a little easier for them to take some skulls. Anywho, I've tried my hand at scratchbuiling a few things so far, and your tutorials are, for me, the clearest and easiest to understand.

    3. Sorry for the delay, some things came up. I'll be getting to this as soon as I can!