The first 2000 points are always the hardest (Big Hats) [2024-07-13]]

Hello everyone,

(As a note, I already posted some of this in the CDO Facebook page, but it’s relevant to the story, so I’m repeating it here).

A short while ago I picked up a good sized lot of 90’s Warhammer figures, mostly for the orcs and undead. Here’s all of it.

The lot also included a bunch of cardboard buildings (multiples of the buildings from the 4th and 5th ed boxes), some trees, a complete set of cards from the 4th ed Battle Magic, Arcane Magic and Chaos supplements (no books though), a couple of Skaven characters, a small Chaos army and some other bit and bobs.

Lastly, but most importantly for this subject, it included a smallish Chaos Dwarf army. Here it is (except for a couple of the plastics and blunderbusses, which I already had in my collection):

So that’s very cool.

Anyway, I’d never considered collecting a Chaos Dwarf army. When they were originally released, I really didn’t like the aesthetic, and when I eventually came around to liking them, they’d become impossibly expensive to buy.

Now I actually had the beginnings of an army, but I also already had a 3rd ed Dwarf army, a 6th Ed Undead army (the “Kemmler’s army of the barrows”) and a heap of other projects lined op, so I figured I’d get to it “eventually”.

I’m not sure how well known it is, but “Warhammer Renaissance” (WHR) is an update and remake of 90’s Warhammer Fantasy (4th/5th edition). It originates in Denmark (where I’m from), but it’s gotten some fans in the wider “Herohammer” community (there are even a bunch of fairly well-produced battle reports on youtube - some featuring Chaos Dwarfs).

I have personally never played WHR, but I recently saw an invitation to a local “bring and battle” event on April 13th. It’s usually 1000 points and you have to use painted figures.

This seems like a good way to get some hobbying done, so I’m determined to go. For the same reason, I decided to pick an army I haven’t started painting yet, and what better choice than my newly acquired Chaos Dwarfs?

So that’s the mission. Clean, ready and paint 1000 points of Chaos Dwarfs by April 13th. How hard can that be? :sweat_smile:


Looks great! Is that the army list then - ten warriors with a character, eleven blunders, taurus, lamassu, bolt thrower and earthshaker?
Talk about a greatest hits compilation…

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This isn’t the final army. Warhammer Renaissance uses a 50% regiments minimum (pointswise), so I couldn’t make this legal.

I haven’t finalized my plans, so that’s probably going to be the subject of a future post, but I do have a good collection of orcs and goblins which could be used to bulk up the core. I probably also want to bring the warrior unit up to at least 16 and the blunderbusses to 12.

The earthshaker is actually missing a crewmember (the one with the sword is a champion model), but I’ve already placed an order for the missing one, along with the 12th blunderbuss and a foot hero to, potentially, use as the general (and my wallet is screaming accordingly).

As a side note, the entire lot (including the chaos, orc and undead stuff) is very akin to my own collection from that period, though I had different armies. Lots of special (cool!) stuff and very few troops. I really feel a form of kinship with the original owner.


Excited to see this take shape! I’ve heard of Renaissance but know little about it. Make sure to let us know how the event goes!

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The first part of the project has been to decide on a color scheme. I went back and forth between classic 90’s colors and a more naturalistic, neo-assyrian inspired, palette for a while.

In the end, I followed the advice of my younger brother, who’s usually right about these things (and also a much better painter), and went with the classic colors.

I decided to paint my seven plastic warriors first as a proof of concept. Partially because they were easy to clean up and partially because the 90’s monopose plastics generally are nice and clean sculpts.

The same held true for these figures. There’s a bit around the back of the weapon hand where you sort of have to arbitrarily decide where the glove ends and the axe- handle begins, but other than that, I found them eminently paintable.

I especially like the scale armor, which is very well-sculpted and really help define the figure.

As an aside: Has everyone seen the interview with Rick Priestly and Alan Perry (who designed the miniatures), that was uploaded to Youtube yesterday? If not, you can catch it here:

I know that Alan states that most of the elements weren’t all that historically inspired, but if you were to shape the hat into a conical helmet, cut off the axe blade and paint all the red elements brass, you can almost see how this could be a historical (if rather stumpy) neo-assyrian/neo-babylonian soldier:

Anyway, I’m rather pleased with the overall result. The colors really pop and it’s fairly quick to paint. I’m not super happy with the axes though (a bit too rough on the drybrushing), but it’ll have to do for now.

I also went with the classic goblin green base, though I use the Goblin Green from Vallejo Game Color, which is a bit closer to the even earlier (80’s) Citadel paint of the same name. It’s a bit more muted than the “true” 90’s stuff, but I have a bunch of 80’s orcs and goblins that I might want to incorporate in the army. They are going to be painted in a more period-appropriate style and bases are probably a good place to compromise, so the entire army looks coherent.

With that out of the way, I have to get started on the blunderbusses (most of which are still soaking in acetone to get the earlier layers of paint off).


Great start and very enjoyable reading about your plans to give these models the painting and table time they deserve!

Scoring oldhammer in bulk is always a sight to behold.


Welcome @Thorgram - did you mean to post this here? Or were you trying to start a blog? Reach out if you need a hand


Absolutely - and the Chaos Dwarfs were only a small part of it. I now, for example, have a complete set of the 4th ed undead special characters :grin:

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I actually haven’t read the entire rulebook yet, but I did play back around 5th ed, so I’m hoping I’ll be able to pick it up fairly easily.

I have watched a couple of battle reports using the system though.

Here are two excellent (English language) ones featuring our very own CHORFS:


Some of my new, old, blunderbusses are proving surprisingly resistant to my usual stripping methods. I don’t know exactly what was used on them, but it certainly wasn’t all acrylics.

Anyway, I managed to get five of them reasonably clean in a timely fashion, so I set off to paint them, starting with applying sand to the bases and giving them an undercoat.

I almost always undercoat white these days, even when I’m not actively trying to get a 90’s look. I have a horrible tendency to paint everything in too dark and muted colors, so I find that the white undercoat helps work against my natural instincts.

I’m also really bad at remembering to trim flash off my miniatures, and these were no different. I don’t know - perhaps I assumed they’d already been trimmed, seeing as they were painted when I got them. This was not entirely the case, so I had to do some trimming after undercoating, which was a pain and didn’t turn out entirely perfect.

Oh well, time is still a factor, so I just have to do better on the next batch.

For the colors, I took inspiration from the old army book and painted the first five to match.

I do have a few duplicate miniatures, so I’ll add variation to the next batch, while still keeping the overall scheme of red and black with green and blue trim. I might also go back and add a bit more highlight to some of the green, but otherwise I’m fairly happy all things considered.


I got the rest of my blunderbusses clean in time to start painting them as a batch, except for one, which still needs some soaking.

This is driving me a tiny bit crazy, but six of these figures are just about the maximum number I’m willing to paint at one time anyway, so it might be for the best. I’ve been painting a lot of epic over this past year, so I’ve become fairly used to large batches, but there’s a fair amount of trim and small details on these figures, so they need a bit more individual attention.

My painting procedure is fairly standard. I apply a base coat to all (or most) colors first, shade and then do the highlights.

The only variation on these figures is that I use “Black Legion” contrast paint for the beards, which I only apply after shading the rest of the model. I also paint the metal parts a medium gray before applying silver. This helps cover up any splashes of other colors and makes the silver seem more uniform. It also doesn’t matter too much, if I then don’t get silver into all the recesses, as the gray functions decently as a shade.

So far I’m almost done with the base coat. I only need to paint the metal and clean up some errors before it’s time to get the washes out.


The next batch of tiny evildoers is done. I think I’m going to field my blunderbusses as a unit of 12, so at this point I only have one left to paint.

I’ve really come to appreciate these sculpts. Small things like how some, but not all, of them have their shot bags unbuttoned or how they wrap the matchcord around the middle finger tells me these were done by someone who had a deep knowledge or this type of firearm (which Alan Perry would have).

Anyway, here is my army at this stage. I do have to paint up some more warriors, but I also have some character models primed, so we’ll see what I paint up next. Haven’t decided yet.



I always knew I needed to get hold of some additional troopers, so I’ve been on a bit of a shopping spree since beginning this project. By sheer coincidence, three lots arrives almost simultaneously.

I needed to bulk up my regiments, and the Fabelzel sculpts were an easy pick. They look good (even if I do prefer the originals) and don’t cost an arm and a leg, assuming you have a 3d-printer.

I don’t have a 3d-printer, so I had to find someone to print them for me, which is why they took so long to get hold of.

Anyway, here they are:

These come up to about 500 points by themselves, so I obviously won’t use them all initially, but I like having options.

Second lot were these:

I don’t really need them at the moment, but I got the lot for about 20 euro at auction and who am I to say no to a great bargain.

Third lot were an indulgence, to be perfectly honest:

I got the Hobgoblin hero because I love the model and the bolt thrower because the Chaos Dwarf army list from The Old World allows them as 0-2 per 1000 points and I already had one. Lastly, I got the Death Rocket because it’s the last of the original war machines I didn’t own and I wanted one. I did say they were an indulgence :sweat_smile:

At this point I’m exactly two months away from the “bring and battle” that got me started on this whole thing, and I’ve still got a lot of painting left to do, so I guess it’s about time to figure out exactly what my army’s going to be.


The invitation to the previously mentioned bring-and-battle event has been published, and it’s thrown a bit of a spanner in the works.

It’s basically going to be held as a small-scale tournament on April 13th. Armies are 1200 points (and not 1000 as I’d planned for) with no single model costing more than 400 points and at least one 20+ man non-missile unit required.

This obviously means that I have to paint more models than I’d originally thought, but I’d also hoped to field my largest unit (warriors) as a unit of 16, which is now going to change to 20. This at least takes care of the first 48 additional points.

Anyway, here’s the army I’m planning to bring:

Unit Ea Point each Total points
Master sorcerer 1 194 194
Dispel scroll 1 25 25
Chaos armor 1 10 10
Doomfire ring 1 60 60
Staff of stealing 1 10 10
Warrior champion 1 32 32
Black hammer of Hashut 1 25 25
Sum 331
Blunderbusses 12 11 132
Warriors w. dh-weapons 19 12 228
Magic standard (Shroud of Obscurity) 1 100 100
Hobgoblin wolf riders w. bows 6 13 78
Hobgoblin archers 12 6 72
Sum 610
War Machines
Death Rocket 1 85 85
Earth Shaker 1 165 165
Sum 250
Total 1191

I’m especially fond of the idea of the “Shroud of Obscurity” in the Warrior unit, which means that they are only hit in melee or by shooting on a 5+. This should hopefully help them survive long enough to bring those two-handed weapons to bear.

To finish this army, I need to paint the following:

  • 1 Sorcerer
  • 13 warriors (including command)
  • 1 blunderbuss
  • 6 hobgoblin wolf riders
  • 12 hobgoblin archers (I’m close to finishing the first 7)
  • Death rocket, including crew
  • One Earthshaker crew (this is assuming that I use the cannon and two other crew with the original, bad, paint job).

Given that I have eight more weeks before the event, I need to average five models per week (counting the death rocket as four), which is just about achievable for me, but it doesn’t leave a lot of room for errors or pauses.

I’m currently stripping 10 of my recently purchased monopose warriors, as I think I can paint them faster than the Fabelzel sculpts, which might buy me a week.

If I need even more time, I can probably switch the wolf riders and Death Rocket for five Bull Centaurs, which should free up another week.

I hope that’ll be enough.

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With a tight deadline hanging over my head, I’ve been hard at work on my army.

I did cheat a bit by starting this week’s allotment early, so the first batch of seven hobgoblins are already done. This puts me two over the minimum average of five per week, which is nice, but my painting time over the coming days is very limited, so I don’t think I’ll get much more done this week.

I basically started by painting everything in primary colors before applying washes and highlighting. Here’s a WIP picture:

I kinda like how the color palette reflects the Chaos dwarfs but without the black secondary color and yellow more or less replacing red as the primary color.

I’m using a printout of the PDF of the old army book as a color reference, which made me believe that the tunics were supposed to be mostly yellow. After looking a bit closer at some higher-resolution images (from the 5th ed Battle Book and the Chronicles of War book), it appears that the colors in my printout are a bit oversaturated and that they were supposed to be closer to undyed cloth.

No matter. If I get the time, I can do another pass of highlights (yellow mixed with ivory), which should take care of it, but it doesn’t look bad as it is, so I might simply leave it for now.


I was curious who makes the Sneaky Gits model seen in the second video preview (or if its a conversion)?

I’d thought that might make a good Murder Boss if I could track them down.


It’s a community remix of Fabelzel’s sculpts. Should still be available through his discord server. :slight_smile:


Thank you! Probably why Reverse Image Searching failed me.

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Think it was @Klausmasterflex

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