No-frills Epic tyranid trygon

Epic-scale tyranid miniatures are notoriously hard to get hold of, and it can also be difficult to find suitable proxies for some of the creatures; although Epic nid players find that the tyranid range for 40K is a good source of bits and pieces for converting assault spawn and biotitans. I thought I'd lend a hand by showing how I'd carry out some of these conversions.
The first is a trygon, loosely based on the snakelike style of the up-to-date Forgeworld model rather than the old sluggy Epic mini. This is the very basic quick 'n' easy version, for those who don't have much experience or confidence with putty and converting, or who want to turn out a number of trygons quickly and are more concerned with distinguishing them from other minis.

The first photo shows the model parts you'll need: enough to make one full hormagaunt, including the base, with mould lines cleaned. It's easier to place the head perpendicular to the body on the hormagaunt mini than the termagant.

Epic trycon 01

Using a sharp knife or saw, cut between the last two limbs on both body pieces, and under the fourth carapace plate. Clean up any ragged edges. When cutting, take care not to slip and gouge your finger, like I did. (Just when I was thinking how I'd write 'take care with knives', too) Glue the seperate middle leg into it's socket.

Epic trycon 02

Mix some epoxy putty for the tail. Claylike putties like milliput, magic sculp and apoxie sculpt will cure rock-hard and sturdy, unlike green stuff or procreate which will remain rubbery and flexible. Here I'm using apoxie sculpt mixed with a little green stuff, to offset the slightly crumbly texture. Less green stuff would do.

Epic trycon 03


Epic trycon 04

Let the putty lie for a while to cure slightly. The time it takes to cure will depend on the putty, ratios of putty, ratio of putty parts, and temperature, so it's a good idea to check it at regular 5, 10, or 15 minute intervals while you get on with something else. Curing can be speeded up by placing it under a desk lamp; but then it can potentially cure to an unworkable state in minutes, so it becomes more important to check on it, and more regularly.
When it's firmed up but still workable, it should be easier to roll out smoothly without picking up dents or fingerprints. Roll it into a long cone or tapered sausage. You'll see I rolled it out to a length of two inches from the pointed end, to a point where it would roughly fit the cut end of the hormagaunt torso. In hindsight, three inches would have been better.

Epic trycon 05

At this point the cone might still be too soft to be positioned without flopping over or picking up dents, so let it cure a little longer before doing so. Again, be careful not to let it cure too much, which will make it too inflexible to pose freely. Carefully slice off the desired length and curl it into a snakelike pose. Keep in mind the size of the base, the angle of the vertical section, and the angle the torso will perch on it. Parts that aren't resting horizontally, like the vertical section and the lifted tail-end, will probably still need to be supported. Let it cure fully. Break out the desk lamp. (It'll be ready for use soon after, although the hard putty might need another day or so to become fully hard)

Epic trycon 06

A closed base would be better, but if you have or want to use the hormagaunt's slottabase, place a piece of masking tape over the slot. This'll be covered by your basing material.

Epic trycon 07

Glue the tail to the base, or leave it off while you attach it to the gaunt torso.

Epic trycon 08

Carefully cut away slices from the top of the tail to fit the cut angles of the torso.

Epic trycon 09

Glue the torso and tail together. Here I've also pinned it and filled the gaps with putty.

Epic trycon 10

Assemble the rest of the hormagaunt pieces as usual. Base it and give it a lick of paint if you like, then go shove a bio-electric field in the faces of some power-tinned food.

Epic trycon 11