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An alternative to Cargo-8 Ridgehauler for Ash Wastes: The COLOSUS land train!

This trademark has been designing and manufacturing wargame terrain since fifteen years, but the time and the technology are changing, and the 3D pinter option is an opportunity that this brand cannot to ignore!

The first project for the 3D printing market has been ‘COLOSUS(click the link to visit the product!), a truck with a lot of accessories to represent a land train similar to the Games Workshop’s Cargo-8 for the game Necromunda: Ash Wastes with all the add-ons that could be used for vehicles in this amazing wargame.

My idea of this kind of vehicle has been different to the Cargo-8, which is a wheeled machine with a really raw mechanical look. The chosen aesthetic is closer to a typical truck, but with an armoured and off-road look for the hostile environment of the wasteland: big, almost monster truck-like knobby wheels, simple and unsophisticated fenders, a coarse and sturdy bumper, and an armoured cab, similar to a medieval helmet, which gave the model its name.

The add-ons were in a similar way: although this is a Sci-Fi model, we wanted a more conventional style for these parts. The boxes, containers, drums, fuel tanks, weapons… have a generic Sci-Fi style, which make these elements really useful for other Sci-fi wargames with a non-gothic aesthetic such as Infinity or Star Wars: Legion, being also enriching for the target game.

This is the first 3D project that EnCobertura offer to be launched on Kickstarter (find the notify web on Kickstarter from this link!), and it has been a great adventure for me, as their designer. I’ve always worked with Autocad, to create all the laser cut models. Getting out of Autocad and starting with a new software and a new world is not an easy task. My experience with 3D was really poor (only some renderings for Iron Battlefield and other professional projects). At that time, I chose the Freecad software to design ‘COLOSUS‘, and it was a real nightmare… Although Freecad is a good program for mechanical design, and allows you to create things with great precision, it is really slow when the files are heavy and include many elements. After this experience, I decided that a better program was needed, so I took some time to learn Blender. The learning curve was good, even for a software like Blender, which includes a really different way of working, but the results make it worth the time invested. The last add-ons for this project were done faster, and the feeling of working (almost) without limits is priceless. And it was a great lesson! “if you want to go faster, sharpen your axe”.

The most fun part of this project was the photo and video sessions – by far the most fun! 3D design is great, but you end up very tired. Printing the parts can be really frustrating if there are problems with the 3D printer. Painting the model is a fun thing to do, but you can get really fed up if it takes longer than expected. However, taking photos and videos is a lot of fun

The photos were taken with the Dark Future Ruins promotional studio models, one of the terrain we offer for 28mm sci-fi wargames. It’s not the most typical wasteland setting, but all those ruins, barbed wire and stacks of wheels and drums made for a truly post-apocalyptic environment. Finding the right angle to show the model at its best wasn’t easy, and the whole set of elements seems counter-intuitive for the photo I wanted to achieve. But it was achieved, and the photos tell exciting stories of survivors around a heavy truck. I am very happy with the result!

  • Landtrain truck - Necromunda Ash Wastes Cargo-8 proxy for resin 3D printing
  • Ridgehauler cargo-8 with Escher band in Necromunda: Ash Wastes

As for the videos, it was the first time I worked with a rotating mirror. It was made from an old turntable and some electrical junk, like a motor from an old electric screwdriver. The only thing I bought was a 60 cm dark mirror. It wasn’t as much fun as the photo session, but it didn’t give me any problems… Perhaps, the most difficult video I made was for the green land train painting tutorial. I’m very happy with my Canon 80D and its 50mm lens, but painting a model in a position that can be recorded by the camera, is the most uncomfortable task I did! For this reason, I spent more time than expected to paint this truck. But finally I am happy with the result, after editing the video, I think it conveys the intended idea, and the model is shown in all its splendour! I just hope, after all this work, that the fans will enjoy the video and that it works well to promote the project…

I have nothing more to tell about this adventure, I hope you like this article and this new post-apocalyptic toy truck! It has been a pleasure to tell some of the stories behind this kind of projects, which take a lot of time and illusion, but are really satisfying. Thanks for reading!

Carlos Avilés