This is not a real Grey Knight dreadnought model. And by real, I mean from Forge World. It might have been at one point many, many moons ago, but this guy is a later generation casting for sure. I'd bet money on it.
I've worked with a number of Forge World models and this one sent to me by my friend that he picked up off eBay doesn't even come close. And it (the resin) smells funny when you cut into it during cleaning mold lines and such. Creepy.
The list of issues was quite interesting to say the least. The model was sent to me just as my friend got it. He realized he could not make this thing go together and he sent the whole bag of problems directly to me... express mail.
To start, we were missing pieces. After that, I quickly realized the legs were not going to attach to the torso as they arrived no matter how hard I tried.
The engine was another issue. It wasn't going to attach as it was either. Then I discovered the arm pegs were not round, but more oval shaped. They also stuck out at an angle and not straight out from the body. I suppose that's okay because the left arm did not have a hole for the peg to stick into anyway.
And the whole thing had a certain softness to it that you get after making a mold of something and casting it over and over. If you've ever cast something, you know what I mean... you lose a tiny bit of the sharpness in the casting process and eventually it shows up on the model.
So how did I fix this thing?
I did my best with what I had. It took buying some new parts and casting some other pieces to get this guy ready for the table.
I put him on my absolute, hands down favorite base of all time. The Urban Rubble line from Secret Weapon minis. I only had one of these 60mm ones lying around and I decided to give it to my friend for this model. I'm a big fan of the whole destroyed city look and there's something about these that I really like.
Don't get me wrong, lots of folks make some great "urban rubble" bases, but these stand out to me more than the rest. I figured this guy needed all the help he could get if he was going to make it to the tabletop. The only downside to using this style base is that the model must be pinned to it. The surface detail is tremendous and to get your model to stay on there, he's got to be pinned.
Pinning wasn't an issue though, I drilled though the lower portion of his legs, through his feet and into the base for both feet. That combined with the pin at his hips means he should hold up to regular game use without any worries.
Since the legs were not going to attach as they came. I had to rebuild his hips. I figured I could take and cut the small piece off the legs and replace it with a much larger hip section from a regular dreadnought.
I took a set of dreadnought legs I had (half of them) and made a simple one press mold of the top hip section using BluStuff. This allowed me to cast half of the new, wider hip piece. I was able to cast two halves, trim them up, glue them together and attach them to the legs. The new hip section came in at the perfect height too so the guy doesn't look odd.
The engine was an easy fix. I bought a new one for a regular dreadnought and with some careful trimming, it fit right into place without any further problems other than the back of the dreadnought torso being slightly angled and not perfectly square.
In the end, I think I did a pretty good job of saving this guy and getting him built. I guess the moral of the story is to be careful when buying models and bits from places online. If you aren't getting them from the original location (like Forge World), then you run the risk (however slim it may be) of getting counterfeit bits. Not all bits providers out there are doing stuff like this, but they are out there. Just be careful and you can avoid the surprise and the work that comes with a counterfeit model like this.
Make sure to check out these posts as they might help:
Prepping resin bases for use
How to clean mold lines off your models