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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Magnetizing your boyz for Gorkamorka

Ok, here we are with another update. I recently got all my Gorkamorka pieces in the mail, so I can finally do this entry.

The first thing to remember when modeling for GoMo is that your boyz have options. More options, in fact, than they know what to do with. Apart from the myriad of intentional weapons and gear swaps, jumping in and out of the controls of a vehicle, there are also cybork parts that they can get from a Mad Dok in Mektown. Parts that can be replaced are legs, body, arms and head. That's kinda all-inclusive. You have a couple of choices now. You can build and paint a separate model for each and every boy after each and every weapon swap or cybork upgrade, or you can magnetize. Clearly, I went with the latter choice.

Here we see the bits that go into the average foot-bound warrior in Gorkamorka.

Each piece is magnetized to fit the torso. For each of these bits, I used the 1/8" disc magnets from Amazing This helped to provide a strong grip between the bits, especially at the waist. The waist is crucial to get right because that one joint supports the weight of the arms, gun, head and anything you mount on their back (more on that later).

Now, for this boy's gun, I went with a Blunderbuss. It's got a ridiculously short range, but it's firepower is devastating. I filed down the end of a shoota, then clipped off the end of a push-pin (at the green line).

Then I drilled out the end of it so it looked like a trumpet and put a little bit of greenstuff around the joint to make it a more smooth transition. The end result is a model that looks as if it was glued together, but with all the options a mag-freak would want.

Now, for the Biker, we have more pieces involved.

You'll see that I have two sets of handlebars, and basically two left arms. I also have two pairs of legs. Here's why.

The legs are for when the rider is mounted on the bike or on foot. For the bike legs, you have to trim down the outside of the foot that is next to the gun and the inside of the legs and crotch to allow the legs to slide on and off the bike. Don't worry about how it looks because when the model is together you can't see them at all. You'll notice that the legs are magnetized differently. The Bike legs have the magnet higher up in the waist bowl to allow the torso to lean forward in relation to the legs. This makes it easier for the ork to sit on the bike and actually reach the handlebars. However, when he's on foot, the magnet needs to be lower in the waist bowl to allow the boy to stand up and not be leaning forward so dramatically. Took me a couple of tries before I finally got it right.


The body, as mentioned above with the foot warrior, is very specifically magnetized. It actually has 5 magnets on it. One for the waist, one for the neck, two for the arms and one for the back. You can see how the neck magnet is positioned in the larger bitz picture but here's the back view.

This is how all bodies are magnetized, even if they aren't initially carrying another weapon on their backs. What this does is allow for future additions of weapons or backpacks. As for polarities, they are arranged so that the arms have polarity 1 facing outwards while the neck, back and waist have polarity 2 facing outwards. This lets the magnetic pull of the magnets help keep the magnets in place.

The set of armless handlebars is for when I stop the bike and dismount the driver. Instead of having this dismembered arm sticking up, I can switch out the handlebars and it will look more real, adding to the immersion factor of the game and any pictures taken during it. The arm is magnetized so while he's off his bike, I can remove the armed handlebar from the body and put on the Stikkbomb-chuckin' arm.

The handlebars are magnetized with 1/16" disc magnets from the same site above. These are VERY fiddly bitz so do yourself a favor and get them in the right way the first time to avoid drilling all the way through the handlebars and into your finger (Yes, that happened to me, but to my credit I made it to the third and final bike before it did). The bike has two little wedge-shaped nubs where the unmodified handlebars are glued. These are perfect reference points so snip them off and drill them out a little bit and glue the magnets in there.

To align the arm properly with the handlebar, I magnetized the handlebar first and then the shoulder. This is the last step because it requires that the bike legs be magnetized and mounted, and the magnetized torso to be on them. Place the magnetized handlebar with the handle cut off on the bike. Then place a spot of glue on the handlebar being held by the hand. Now place the magnetized handlebar arm on the torso and adjust it so that it contacts the handlebars on the bike.

With the head, you just drill out the cavity where the neck would normally connect and stick a magnet there. It's not that difficult, so I didn't take a picture of it.

The final result is a biker with the following options.

Meet my nob, Grubwazza.


  1. I've just ordered some magnets for my biker mob. I shall be following your tips on making this happen!