Hello and welcome to another painting guide. This time we’ll be looking at how to get the Black armour finish for Pre-Heresy and Heresy era X Legion, The Iron Hands.

I wanted to get the oily sheen of the black machine look that Forge World achieved with their display models. After a few test coats it’s quite easy to achieve, particularly with an airbrush. (You could use a brush to hand paint this, but it wouldn’t give quite as even a coat).

The first stage of this was the Forge World silver basecoat that I demonstrated in another post. Once you’ve done that you can follow this guide.

The first thing that you need to do is to get the smoky oily sheen down. This is down using a mix of Tamiya Smoke and Tamiya Clear Yellow. This is a 9:1 mix. (I made it up in advance, putting 90ml of Smoke and 10ml of Yellow in a bottle, then thinning it with approximately 50ml of Tamiya thinner)

This was then sprayed on in three different coats, allowing time to dry in between.

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(I lost the follow up pictures for the infantry, so I had to carry on with the tactical support squad – but you will see the same affect)

The next step is to spray some GW Druchii Violet wash in patches over the model. This will give the look of small oil leaks, and add to the general sheen. As it’s a wash, I didn’t bother thinning it for the airbrush.

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More random splotches, but this time with Tamiya Clear Green, which just looks nice under the finished coat. I’ve seen people do this with lots of green, but I think it looks better with a slight burst from the airbrush – nice and subtle. (This was thinned 50:50)

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Next, go back over the purple to really reinforce this colour, and to blend it in with the green. This second purple stage can, and possibly should overlap the green. There is a slight difference, but it’s noticeable. The purple is stronger.

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Finally, we want to get the black tone as they are looking a bit too colourful and a bit too smoky at the moment.

This is done with Tamiya Smoke again. (You might think smoke is an odd colour to get a black tone, but you will be surprised!) Thin it down, either 2:1 smoke to thinner, or 1:1 depending on how comfortable you feel. Then spray this on in coats until it is a little bit lighter than you would like. (I got for 4 coats usually).

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And that’s the basecoat done. It’s very glossy at the moment (which some people may like), but you will find once you use a matt varnish this will die down, and the colours will also darken giving you a proper oily black tone. (As you can see in the finshed pictures below)

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I will do another blog post soon about how to do the details, legion badges, decals, and basing soon.

Thanks for reading, and if you have any comments or questions please ask below!