Friday, March 7, 2014

SHOWCASE: Tau Skyray Gunship

A gallery of one of the Tau's most formidable weapons platforms.

I purchased the Hammerhead/Skyray combo kit as part of my mega-painters project, and finished the Skyray build over the Christmas holiday, thanks to a solid block of time off.

The kit is well crafted, but the molds are starting to show wear from repeated runs, and several of the seams on the model needed to be extensively green stuffed to hide them. It is a very attractive model once it's complete, and I especially like the lines in the turret that flow up into the missile wings.

I glued the seeker missiles in place, as well as the markerlights, but made sure the turret itself was only friction mounted, so I could swap it with the Hammerhead build. I also left the engines, as well as the front sensor package unglued, so they could be pivoted for dramatic poses. I'm pleased with the way the lenses on the sensor array came out. Detail painting isn't really my strong suit, and these were just large enough for me to get at.

I made a mask, and painted my sept's markings on the right wing. You can also see this on my Riptide, and several other places in the army. I glued the smart missile pods in place, as I didn't want them falling out, and wasn't concerned with rotating them. I chose the smart missiles over the burst cannons because they have a better all around stat line, and are the same points cost. Frankly, I don't know why you'd choose the burst cannons at all.

As with all my models, I used a satin varnish over the entire surface, then applied an oil wash to the model's panel lines. You can see how dark and clean they are in the images. Oil washes beat ink washes in every way except convenience.

I glued the side and rear hatches closed, as I knew I would never open them. I think it's great that they include the option to hinge them, and some of the interior is modeled, but I'm just not interested in the extra work that will almost never be seen.

I haven't fielded this in any games yet, but I'm looking forward to taking my tau to the local shop soon, and trying everything out, once the entire force is complete. As a parting shot, here's the Skyray taking up a firing position in the outskirts of an abandoned Imperial outpost.



  1. ooh, have I seen the yellow missiles? That's a great pop of color there. Looks great! Just realized I never actually posted my own Skyray. Maybe we'll be seeing it soon as I don't think a lot of new painting will be done once Titanfall comes out on Tuesday.

  2. Love your painting and presentation, very high quality. That final shot could have been right out of a GW publication! (I do mean that in a good way!)