Friday 17 February 2023

Beach head 2023 Titan Walk and Imperator Paint Progress

Almost there!

Ira Metallum towering over all other engines...

So this month I spent every spare moment painting the Imperator to try and get her completely finished in time for the Titan Owners club walk at Beach head 2023 in Bournemouth.  I got the majority of the titan finished, but still have 5 part-painted towers and a fair amount of micro-details to do such as chips and tide mark highlights.  I was much happier taking her to Beach head with only some of the towers to finish.

I thought I'd share the pictures I took at Beach head and follow up with some additional WIP images as well - enjoy!

Beach head 2023

I've not attended this event before as it's almost as far from my home in Sheffield as you can get while still in England!

My first stop on the journey was at Warhammer World in Nottingham where Ira Metallum got quite a warm welcome!

As it was a long drive and the venue was not the easiest to reach with a car, I opted just to take Ira Metallum and my 4 House Raven Questoris Knights as a close assault deterrent!

Me and my baby!

Ira Metallum deployed and ready for battle alongside her imperial allies!

Princeps Rob W's incredible Aeldari war engines - such a fabulous host to behold!

Ira Metallum surveys the traitors arrayed against her...

I'm very happy with the oil washes, but she still needs those final pick-ups and highlights!

Imperial engines muster across the battlefield, ready to repel the loathsome traitors!

From the rear you can see the rear towers which are still work in progress

I rarely show the back of the engine as it's hard to get to in the house - suffice to say it has the same level of detail as the front and sides!!

A Techpriest and servitor can be see on the rear platform, performing maintenance on the mighty engine's enormous power plant 

It's easy to forget quite how colossal the Imperator is until you see it next to other engines!

While the traitor forces advance on the imperial line, the Imperator's crew scramble to defend their engine!

Ira Metallum takes aim at the traitor engines...

...and blasts Drake Seta's Mortis Warlord Bone Garland in the head with 4 overcharged plasma blasts from her Starshatter Plasma Annihilator

With only a single hull point remaining, its faceplate already reduced to molten slag and the princeps grievously wounded, Bone Garland shut down for critical emergency repairs.  Ira Metallum wasted no time, finishing Bone Garland with multiple shots from the Hellstorm Cannon, detonating the cockpit and destroying the engine. 

Battle raged with the treacherous Aeldari siding with the traitor war engines

Dancing and jetting around the battlefield, the Aeldari knights and titans jinked out of firing arcs... 

...before scything through the loyalist engines with their foul xenos weaponry!

There was so much interest in the engines that the battle took a bit of a back seat during the event - we only made it to the end of turn 2, but there was still plenty of carnage!

Ira Metallum claimed another Warlord kill while she was laid low for the very first time in return!  Massed missile fire from 2 warlord titans brought down her shields.  2 turns of sustained fire from multiple Warlord and Warbringer belicosa volcano cannons started to weaken the mighty Metalican engine's leg armour.

The final quake cannon shot of the game came from Princeps Luke's Vulturum Warbringer on the other side of the battlefield (at maximum range!) smashing Ira Metallum's leg out from under her.  Given the horrific damage Ira Metallum had caused Luke's engines at the previous walk, the kill was well deserved even if Drake Seta now seeks vengeance for stealing his glorious vengeance for the death of Bone Garland!

Preparing for battle!

General Painting

Base colours were added to the outstanding area of Ira Metallum over a couple of weeks

There's a lot of surface area to cover!

There were some minor repairs and touch ups to carry out as I sent along

The carapace towers starting to look more defined with their blocked out colours

It's worth noting at this point that I spent a whole evening applying the rest of the 1mm ball bearings to the inside of the Hellstorm cannon's plating - I didn't have time to get this done in November and it was niggling at me!

Painting the carapace was extremely time consuming!

I masked off the edges so that I could paint hazards onto the rim in order to break up the large areas of red

They look lovely but take a fair amount of time (and paint!) to get right - I think they were worth the effort 

The Skitarii carapace door gunners in their Heavy bolter rigs, ready to fend off any enemies that get too close!

The engine broken down into sections prior to oil washing


There are many crew members on board an Emperor class titan - I've added a fair amount to my engine with more to follow as the towers are completed!

This Tech Priest took up residence on the rear platform.  I love making little vignette's across the titan's surface :)

This miniature was so much fun to paint.  It's crammed with little details!

I particularly enjoyed painting the vials etc

I gave the Techpriest's carapace a metallic shine to contrast with the mat finish of his robes 

Along with a servitor lackey, he is accompanied by his trusty tool box!

Such a lovely detailed accessory - I just couldn't resist adding it!

Not all of the crew are human - this tiny little bord's nest cut from a spare Troggoth head can be found somewhere on the titan...


No proud engine would be complete without banners depicting its glorious history!  Iran Metallum already has a crotch banner, but I had always planned for each arm and some of the towers to have them as well.

I keep a sketchbook with me most of the time so that I can record any random ideas I have.  I sketched out banner details and designs a number of times, but these were the ones I settled on:

This sketch was just an experiment with background details for banners to see how the idea could look

I started by marking out the banner area then sketched all of the elements I wanted from my sketchbook.  I chose two foreground images - the Metalican shield and the Opus Titanicus above it. 

I inked the foreground images and borders then taped everything down for painting!

I painted the border and foreground images first

I then gradually filled in the background details in muted grey tones so as not to overwhelm the foreground emblams
The finished design prior to being cut out

I drew a Mechanicus Angel with steel wings and a cog axe for the centre of the second banner - what could be more Legio Metalica than that?

Again, I marked out the banner then re-drew the angel image into the banner window (which was slightly smaller than my original A5 sketch).  I forgot to take pictures of the sketched out design and inking, but it was the same process as the first banner!

I then marked out the hazards and other details in black and white before adding more colour

Once I'd painted everything I also added some kill markings and legion symbols to the banner

I cut both banner from the paper sheet, blacked out the back and edges then gave them two coats of mat finish mod-podge for protection and strength!

I also painted smaller horizontal streamer flags for the upper towers

The finished banners!

I also weathered some extremely thin paper strips (4mm across) in order to make some script streamers

I added tiny text to each one of these tiny banners

They look fantastic hanging down from the front of the titan's support struts - the tiny script streamers really help to scale the titan and convey its immense size 


I got a bit carried away and made magnetic terminals for Ira Metallum and the Questoris knight banner I took with me. Eventually I'll do one for each of my engines!

I constructed the frame from Foamex and backed it with a thin steel plate
I painted the terminal boards to look like rusted metal

And they look great with the terminals slotted in! 

I used tiny ring magnets on the back of my AT terminal markers

The final result!


  1. As soon as I saw the first pictures of the Bournemouth walk, I clocked Ira Metallum. Such an imposing and iconic image!
    Starting to see the end of the project here - the amount of detail really is staggering!

    1. Thanks Xarf - appreciate the support as always! The project has been such a long haul - have needed all the encouragement I can get to keep me going!

  2. It was great battling alongside Ira Metallum, although I wouldn't want to face it myself, makes Warlords like Warhounds without the benefit of squadron rules keeping them alive... I think the battle field at the smaller Walks is too small to properly battle an Imperator, however the big Walks its a fair test.