Dreadfleet – Storm Clouds and Bones


The Windguage – Storm Clouds, Fate, Ghosts and Treasure

For me, Dreadfleet has a huge potential to be a very pretty set, I’m not just talking about the ships, or the islands, but alsos the tools to make the game work. with this in mind, I decided to get on and paint the windguage.

I started with a black undercoat on both sides.

Dreadfleet windguage - undercoat

On the front side (the one pictured above) I decided to start by dry brushing a 1:1 mix of Scorched Brown and Shining Gold over the main face.

Dreadfleet windguage - drybrush

I then picked out the storm clouds with Adeptus Battlegrey and washed the main face down with Devlan Mud.


Dreadfleet windguage - stormclouds

Next up, I washed the storm clouds with Badab Black, and whilst that dried, I dry brushed the main face with Shining Gold. When the clouds dried, I edge highlighted the clouds with Space Wolf Grey and then a thiner line highlight of skull white.

Dreadfleet windguage - highlights

I finished the front off by picking out the raised triangles on the inner ring with Boltgun Metal.

Dreadfleet Windguage - complete - front

For the rear plate, I did the same gold drybrush/highlight mix for the outer ring and clouds. For the faceplate of the rear, I painted it down with Astronomican Grey then washed it Thrakka Green.

Dreadfleet windguage - rear

When that dried, I applied a 1:1 mix of Scorpion Green and Thrakka Green to random spots, drybrushed the raised areas with Astronomican Grey and line highlighted the raised areas with Skull White.

Dreadfleet Windguage - complete - rear




Ruler and Wheels of Bone

I started the wheels and ruler with a Skull White undercoat.



Dreadfleet movement ruler + wheels - undercoated


This was then painted Bleached Bone and liberally washed down with Gryphonne Sepia. When it dried, it looked like this:

Dreadfleet movement ruler + wheels - washed

The final steps for this bone effect was to drybrush the raised areas with more Bleach Bone.Dreadfleet movement ruler + wheels - drybrushed Dreadfleet movement ruler + wheels - mid-drybrush

I then picked out the skull eye sockets on both the wheels and ruler with a Badab Black wash. Dreadfleet - ruler + wheels - complete


The Seadrake – Dragons + Ships

First off, I HATE painting light colours, by light colours I mean pale colours such as white, yellow, etc. It’s why I play Necrons, Imperial Guard and Blood Angels – I use strong dark colours in all of my armies. So tackling the Seadrake, was always going to be a pain for me. Looking at the White Dwarf guide filled me with dread as I tried to work out how I could make the guide easier on me, whilst still looking for opportunities to learn new painting methods.

Up until now I’ve done every ship in Chaos Black undercoat, I figured that doing the same with the Seadrake may make it come out a little too dark for my liking so I did the hull, towers, dragons and sails in Skull White and the main decking in Chaos Black.


I then went over the hull in Astronomican Grey, Calthan Brown for the decking, Deneb Stone for the towers, a 2:1 mix of Space Wolf Grey: Ice Blue for the tower roofs.


I then washed the towers in Sepia, the decking in Devlan Mud and the roofs in Badab Black.


Whilst I waited for that to dry, I painted the sails Enchanted Blue and then washed them in Asurmen Blue wash.


I did my hull dragon in Macharius Solar Orange, washed him in Baal Red, dry brushed him a 1:1 mix of Golden Yellow and Blazing Orange and finally washed the wing membranes ins Baal Red again. I picked out the sail detail with Skull White, drybrushed the hull, towers and decking with Bleached Bone and re-washed the decking with Devlan Mud again.  I layered the tower roofs with Shadow grey and edge highlighted with Space Wolf Grey and picked out the dragon, hull runes, rudder and weapon ports in Shining Gold. I then washed the dragon and the rudder in Devlan Mud.

This was my end result:

The Seadrake - finished

The White Dwarf issue discussing the painting tips suggests a white/blue dragon for independent stuff, now, whilst this is a fine traditional colour scheme for High Elves, I wanted to add a little character to mine, so I went with a Purple Dragon. Paint the dragon in Liche Purple, then wash it down in Leviathan Purple. I then dryburshed it with Warlock Purple and washed the wing membranes in Asurmen Blue.


Grimnir’s Thunder – the Alliance’s carrier

So in my previous post, I discussed how I painted the blimps of the Grimnir’s Thunder. Here I’ll discuss the ship itself….

Grimnir's Thunder - completed

Grimnir’s Thunder is the armour tank of the alliance and one of two (arguably the only true) carrier of the Alliance’s fleet. She’s a behemoth of metallics and if WD 382 is to be believed a simple paint job….

Whilst it’s true, you do only work initially with three colours, the amount of intricate details on this model make it far from simple to paint.

As usual with my ships, I decided to paint the components and base before assembly. My base guide here covers the basics of the base, though with the Thunder’s base, there is a small (what appears to be) steam powered mini boat in one corner.

Grimnir's Thunder - undercoat and base

Not sure how easy it is to spot, so let me jump to the end for a second…

Grimnir's Thunder - complete with miniship

As you can see here, the little ship (aww dinky) has been done in a paint scheme similar to the Grimnir’s Thunder (so Chainmail for the steel, 1:1 mix of Shining Gold and Scorched Brown) for the paddles and turret weapon. Wash it down with Devlan Mud, then highlight back up. Do all of this after you have finished painting the base, otherwise your colours might mix during the washes.

Grimnir’s Thunder’s base colours are Gnarloc Green, Chainmail, a 1:1 mix of Scorched Brown and Shining Gold and Tin Bitz. WD 382 talks you through it as a paint guide.

In my case though I fond the little details (the runes) the hardest to sort out. Let me show you.

In the WD they recommend you do the metallics first, nuh-uh, in my case, I did the greens first and then applied the metallics.

Grimnir's Thunder - base colours

I also painted the blimps first.

Grimnir's Thunder - base colours (midsection)


This meant when I came to wash (again the guide says do it for just the steel and the green) I could do the whole thing.

Grimnir's Thunder - washed + highlighted

To highlight (also in the above picture) I just went over the various panels in their various layers (see WD 382 to find out what colours I used). Keeping the detailing clean here was the hardest part and required a really steady hand (I recommend holding the model in one hand, the tip of the brush in the other and with practice u can get a good stead hand by pressing the heels of your hands together while you paint (or buy a vice….).

White Dwarf advised another layer of fine line highlighting around the steel panels and some randomized chipping by mixing Blazing Gold and Mithril Silver together and applying it on the various ‘gold’ metallic points. Frankly i liked the end result without that step as it gave a much more striking model….

Grimnir's Thunder - completed

Job’s a good ‘un.







Grimnir’s Thunder – Fun with Blimps

When I decided to paint Grimnir’s Thunder I was expecting to have an easy job – I mean look at it….

Grimnir's Thunder - completed

It’s just greens, and metallics (and base which is pretty easy tbh – see my earlier post on how I do these). Little did I realise that it’s a tad more complicated than I imagined. For one there is a ton of detail hidden on this model – a lot of it on the interior surfaces or the mid-section.  Then there’s the blimps….

No, I remember Man O’ War, it was a great game, it had fliers, it had ships, it had monsters, heck it was an innovation in wargaming, what I never comprehended (folly of youth) was the complexity in painting some of those fliers (like Warhammer 40k Epic’s models, they were TINY). As a result, the blimp(s) proved to be one of the most challenging pieces of painting I’ve done so far in Dreadfleet. In fact, I perceived the challenge to be so great, that I decided to start with them….

Following the White Dwarf guide, I started with the base colours.

Grimnir's Thunder - Blimps - base colours

As you can see, I’ve gone for the Gnarloc Green basket, Deneb Stone Blimp, Chainmail metallics and tin bits prow/weapons. This was then given a good wash of Devlan Mud.

Grimnir's Thunder - Blimps - washed

When that dried I picked out the specific areas with their highlight colours (go buy WD 382 to find out what they were).

Grimnir's Thunder - Blimp - highlighted

Finally I sorted out the base. This was done using the same guide I always use now for my bases, but at each layered stage (incl washes and drybrushes), I applied the same effect to the stem that the blimp sits on (working bottom up with the dry brushing). As a result I get a base and stem that looks like a good solid mix of sea and air for the blimp to fly on.

Grimnir's Thunder's Blimp - completed

I’ll do a second post later covering Grimnir’s Thunder.

Dreadfleet – Painting the Skabrus

After finishing the Skabrus base, it was time to get on with painting the zombie giant fish itself (again, majority of this was from following details in WD 382 but I did deviate here or there as colours – and my paint supplies demanded).

I started with a Chaos Black undercoat and brushed Deneb Stone all over the whole fish, painted the bell’s support strut Scorched Brown, the Screaming Bell in Dark Angel Green and again picked out the metallics with a 1:1 Dwarf Bronze and Tin Bitz mix.

Skabrus - base colour


Next up, came the adding of flesh tones to the body. WD382 suggested (and I used) a 1:1 mix of Leviathan Purple and Orgyn Flesh washes, I also washed the metallics and woodwork with Devlan Mud. I then applied a thing layer of goblin green to the Screaming Bell.

Skabrus -Flesh wash

When that dried I applied a verdigris effect (again 1:1 mix of Dark Angel Green and Hawk Turqoise, watered down into a wash) to the metallics and for my mini I applied a layer of rotting flash to the Skabrus body (it’s meant to be a zombie fish right?). Skabrus - Verdigris - flesh tone Skabrus - Verdigris - flesh tone 2

Whilst that all dried, it was time to sort out the gun decks and the mast. Scorched Brown was applied for the woodwork, Bleached Bone to the bones, Mechrite Red to the pennant and the Dwarf Bronze/Tin Bitz mix to the metallics.




I wash the mast and pennant in Devlan Mud. When that dried, I applied a layer of Blood Red to the pennant, line highlighted the mast with Kommando Khaki and picked out the Skaven symbol with Shining Gold. I also highlighted the guns on the gun deck and their wires with Shining Gold. I then went back to the main body and painted all the bones and teeth with Bleached Bone. When that dried I washed the bone areas with Gryphonne Sepia and then line highlighted the bones and teeth with Skull White. I line highlighted the Screaming Bell with Scorpion Green and then did a thinner line highlight of Skull White. When that all dried, I put the ship on her base. I found that the mast fit into the gun decks was extremely tight, so drilled that out a little wider before fitting it together and gluing it in place.

Job’s a good ‘un.

Skabrus complete