Monday, June 1, 2009

Bitzbox Bullpup Las Carbines: a tutorial

I made a vet squad for my entry at The Realms of Equinox: Attention! contest. It is my first entry in one of his contests, and I was quite surprised to see there were only two entries. He has some great ideas for contests, so I recommend watching his site for future challenges. This is what's been keeping me busy for the last month. I wasn't sure I was going to make the cut off, but made it with about 15 minutes to spare. The other entry, very creative and nicely detailed, is by Itkovian, over at Not Yet Done.

Over the next few days, I hope to show how I did some of the conversions I did for my vets. The first I have ready is a Bullpup Las Carbine.

For my vets, I used a lot of Tau Fire Warrior parts, and here was no exception. I had seen something similar a while back, and had actually bought many of the parts I needed prior to the contest. Whoever was the inspiration behind this idea used Forge World parts, which I didn't have the time or funds to invest in. Without these bits, I wasn't sure I could pull it off, but Craig's Shotgun Tutorial, over at King's Standard Bearer, provided some much needed inspiration.

Like Craig, I started out with what every Imperial Guard collector has lying around in quantity, the standard IG las gun. For my conversions, I used some Tau weapons, complete with their three fingered trigger hands. In order to avoid this distraction here, I've used Tau and Cadian weapons that don't have hands on them. Starting with one of each weapon, chop them off as shown with the red lines in the left picture, and use the parts shown in the right picture:

The reason why I cut the IG las gun the way I did was because I wanted to keep the top sight assembly AND the skull and wings. If you want to keep it easy and don't want the insignia, just cut the las gun so you keep the top sight assembly together (you will need to reposition the barrel if you go this way). If you want the insignia, and have an extra scope lying about, you can forget the upper sight assembly and just tack on a site to the top (with this method, you can also make a shorter carbine). Either way, it's simple enough from there if you just move the location of the L-shaped cut in the stock. You can also deepen the L-shaped cut if you want the butt stock a little higher.

So, once you've got the pieces cleaned up and ready for installation, you get a nice Bullpup Las Carbine, shown here with a regular las gun for reference. Glue's still wet here, so it will get cleaned up later on.
Some of you might have wondered why there were extra red line cuts on the Tau Carbine above. One of the notes in the new Codex offered that veterans have access to unique equipment. To help show this, I created a new type of binocular for one of them. I got the pieces from the extra cuts shown above, and here's a closer look.

In the above picture, the two parts needed are on the right. You don't need the whole gun barrel, only the end cut. For this tutorial I cut the right hand bit at the line. In my version, I didn't cut it and it looks a bit long. In the picture to the right, I've included the new binocular and a pouch bit from, I believe, the Space Marine Scout set. I've included it here because it looks like the perfect size for these binos. So, if you want to add a bit more to your vet, add one or two of these pouches to show where he keeps his extra fluff!

And finally, though I can't show the whole submission until the contest is over, I can show some close-ups of for WIP purposes. If you want to see the whole set, go visit Equinox's blog. Please vote for your favorite squad while you are there.

Note the three fingered trigger hand. Had I more time, I would have tried to convert it. In case you are wondering about the left hands in both these pictures, they started out as Tau. It's actually quite easy to add a fourth finger to the left hand, because they are very close together. The trigger hand is a different story, as the fingers are more spread out.


  1. Very nice conversion and tutorial write up. Cheers!

  2. great stuff. love the look of those scout pouches, might have got some if id seen them sooner!

  3. Very nice! Simple and very effective. GW just had to be troublesome for converters with the whole three finger thing, didn't they...

    I didn't know who's entry mine was competing against until I read this post, well done for keeping schtun! ;) Good luck to you!

  4. This is one of the few lasgun conversions I've seen that doesn't mangle the thing beyond recognition. Very cool!