A post about what you need to make model conversions.
If you are considering converting your models or miniatures be it Warhammer, Necromunda, Malifaux or something else then this post is for you!
In terms of what do you need to make model conversions, you don’t need a lot of tools to get started. Some clippers, glue and the bits and pieces to create a new model can be enough. Although just mixing and matching is more of a case of kitbashing than converting.
In order to take your model conversion to the next level – that goes beyond using a set of clippers and glue. You will need to get additional pieces of equipment.
The more model conversions you create. The bolder you will want to become with your conversions. And, in order to achieve the bigger and bolder conversions, you will need better tools!
What do you need to make model conversions? The Bare Minimum
In order to make a miniature conversion – as a bare minimum, you will need; Spare bits, clippers, and some poly glue ( plastic glue) such as that you can buy from Revell or Citadel.
In order to get started, you don’t need to buy the most expensive equipment either.
I would even advise against buying the most expensive equipment in the beginning. Going with the cheaper options first to get your feet wet is best!
If you like it, then buy better equipment.
You don’t need to shell out all that money only to realise you don’t like converting your miniatures.
Converting miniatures can make your miniatures unique. Whether you are a Warhammer collector or enjoy modifying tanks for your WW2 Wargames. But, converting is not for everyone.
Start small, and work up.
About the Recommended Tools for Modifying Miniatures
It should be noted here that some of the recommended tools below are part of the eBay affiliate scheme. In other words, should you decide to buy any of the products from eBay, a commission may be paid to DBG at no additional cost to you. ( aside from buying the product )
But If you do decide to buy anything from eBay – A big thank you for your support and helping Dragon Bone Games.
What do you need to make model conversions | The Tool List
Recommended tools for converting your models or Warhammer miniatures :-
The Spare Bits
At the very least, if you only go as far as kit-bashing a miniature, you will need spare bits and pieces to work with. You can read more here on where you can buy bits and spares to create Warhammer conversions.
Or if you prefer, you can also search eBay for spare parts. eBay is a treasure trove for Warhammer spares and miniature bits for creating conversions.
( should you decide to purchase anything from eBay a small commission may be paid to myself – DBG )
These are a must-have basic tool for converting models. Model or miniature clippers can be used for removing models from their plastic or metal sprues. They can also be used for trimming burs and excess mould flashing on your model.
On the topic of converting a miniature, I would put this high on the recommended tools list! You won’t shape or cut much without it these.
They can be found on eBay here | Clippers
Plastic or Poly Glue
A must if you want to stick your plastic models together. OR I suppose you could blu-tac all the bits and pieces together… No, use glue! This is an important companion to the clippers.
Plastic glue or poly cement such as the type you can buy from Revell will allow you to bond plastic to plastic and create your conversion.
This can be also found here on eBay.
A Sharp Model Knife
Clippers are all well and good, but they can’t always remove all of the flashing or mould seams very easily. A knife or a scalpel can be a great way of tidying up all the burs and bits on a model when you remove it from a sprue.
If you are converting metal miniatures, plastic glue won’t be enough. You need something that can bond metal to metal or plastic to metal. Using only plastic glue doesn’t tend to bond metal to metal together.
Be careful when using superglue. It can stick your fingers together!
A Selection Of Model Files
These are great for those fine little bits of tidying, smoothing and flattening on areas of the conversion. You might have a piece of plastic or a bur that interferes with a joint around an arm or a limb and prevents you from glueing it properly!
Nobody likes a wonky arm or head! If the surfaces are unclean, this can make parts more prone to breaking off or not bonding in the first place. Keep the fit snug, and the surfaces clean. Small files are great for this!
What do you need to convert Warhammer miniatures?
As a default answer, it would be recommended to use Citadel products to convert Citadel Miniatures. Games Workshop AKA Citadel miniatures offer a range of excellent products with some being the industry-leading standard.
But, saying this, you do not strictly need to use Games Workshop’s own products if your budget does not allow it.
You can buy model clippers and glue from a range of model companies such as Revell.
The only mandatory piece of criteria to convert a Warhammer miniature, is the miniature itself and the bits.
What do you need to make model conversions? Special bits
A personal fave of mine which I have recently fallen in love with is GreenStuff. This can help to push the boundaries when it comes to creating conversions. GreenStuff is a two-part epoxy putty that is otherwise known as Kneadite. When you mix the 2 parts of the epoxy putty together it forms a clay-like material that can be shaped, smoothed, filed, stretched and twisted into various shapes and forms for a range of applications.
Feel free to take a look and see what you can find in your search.
Should you decide to purchase anything from any of these affiliated links, a commission may be paid to me – Dragon Bone Games. A big thank you for your support.
Clay Shapers For Miniatures
These are in essence rubber headed brushes that allow you to sculpt and shape polymer clay and Kneadite ( GreenStuff). You can use metal clay modelling tools but the miniature clay shapers can help to give a really smooth and blended finish to any sculpting you do.
You can search eBay for Clay shapers too. Just make sure they are of scale for miniatures if you buy them.
A great little tool if you like boring holes into things. The Army Painter Drill, which I personally own comes with different width drill bits. A great little tool, that can be used with many different applications such as making pilot holes or boring into your conversions.
Little Ball Bearings
What can you do with little ball bearings?
You can use these to make lumps and bumps with Green Stuff and they can be used to add weight to miniatures by glueing them to the underside of their bases. I don’t use them all the time but a handy little extra to have in your kit.
Adding weight to your plastic miniatures can also just make them feel that little bit fancier too, helping you to forget that model is most likely plastic or resin.
The take away what do you need to make model conversions?
Aside from all of the recommended products listed above for creating conversions. For miniature conversions, you don’t need much at all in fact. A simple pair of clippers and some plastic glue will afford you to do a kit-bash.
But the products mentioned above might allow you to make more unique conversions to explore.
Enjoy converting your models!
What do you need to make model conversions | Item Summary
- Spare Bits
- Model Glue
- A sharp knife
- Various files
- Clay shapers for the green stuff
- Model Drill
- GreenStuff ( Kneadite )
If you found these tool recommendations helpful you may find these posts helpful too
- How do you make a miniature conversion
- Converting Warhammer pox walkers
- What is a kit-bash or a model conversion
- Where to buy bits and job lots
- Get cheap Warhammer for your conversions
- Different types of Nurglings
- Past and present Genestealer models