We ended up with me putting on the hatches and thinking that they looked woefully out of place. Sure, they seemed to fit the style of the Tyranid army, but they just didn’t blend in with the rest of the model. My answer was to just cover the model in little bits of green stuff shaped into pseudo-organic blobs.
Those little blobs did their fair share to make the whole thing look a little more bug-like, especially around the top of each of the hatches, but they still didn’t do it for me. That is, until I reached into my bag of gubbinz and started mashing various little Tyranid bits into the green stuff.
In order to allow the hatches to open, I had to leave access to the hinges basically unfettered. For the life of me, I’m not sure why I’m still insisting that the hinges still work on the finished piece (And I’m not sure if they will still work after they get all of the build-up of stain from the dipping process). I did consider building up a ridge of green stuff over the top of it so that it hides the hinge completely, but in order to do so, and to allow the hinge to open fully, you really have to build it up rather thick and I thought that detracted from the style.
Otherwise, that’s about it. I did use some extra parts of green stuff to try to plug up some of the holes/gaps from the various carnifex carapaces as well.
Oh, I also wound up magnetizing the guns. For them, I wound up using some of the leftover bits I had from the various Tyranid sprues laying around. I believe these are barbed strangler bits from a Tyranid Warrior kit that I cut down, drilled out, and magnetized. I tried to place them–generally speaking–so that they were facing each of the cardinal directions, but also so that they were in somewhat natural looking positions. I wound up magnetizing them not because they should be removable (you can’t remove the heavy bolters from a standard bastion), but because they stick out precariously and I was worried that they may break off in time.
For each gun, I sculpted a bit of green stuff around the base to cover up the magnets, but I also included a little spot for an eyeball (which is how they address automated firing of the weapon).
Now, all that awaits is for me to paint the damn thing. Think I’ll get it done before the end of the year? God, I hope so…
By the way, the thumbnails below were taken in direct sunlight, which is never a good way to take photos of models; feel free to click on them for larger images.