At last, another squad ready for deployment, I'm sure the Emperor would be mighty miffed at my tardiness in readying my Chapters forces; but he's been lazing around on the Golden Throne for the last 10,000 years, so he's one to talk. I mean you'd have thought the guy would have run out of reading material and bog roll by now and the queue outside must be worse than at a Forge World stand!
Anyway I digress, I've spent a lot of time deliberating over the exact nature and layout of company colours, squad and rank markings; a lot has changed for the Blood Drinkers over the years and I wanted to bring the look of my army up to date but also keep some sense of the old order, in recognition of the fact that the Drinkers have served with me since the Rogue Trader days.
Using an old Veteran Assault Squad as my test subjects (I was never happy with the white on them), I set out to produce the 1st Assault Squad of the 4th Company, not quite sure why I started with the 4th but there you go.
I used the Insignium Astartes book as my guide for the 'strict codex' adherence; this statement about the Chapters look, being one of the few definitive pieces of information written about the Blood Drinkers.
The book is still available via The Black Library's print on demand service and whilst being slightly dated and primarily for Ultra Marines; it still contains a wealth of information on markings and heraldry for codex Chapters.
I also referred to the Blood Angel codex past and present, being a dyed in the wool supporter of the Drinkers remaining 2nd Founding; I wanted to maintain the feeling that the Chapter had carried over various themes from the dissolution of the Legion. Finally I used reference material from my old White Dwarf clippings regarding the old rank structure and markings.
I've kept the original RT Chapter symbol but updated it to be black as per the new codex with the help of an excellent psd file sent to me by Dzer0 which enabled me to print my own transfer sheets. I used this Custom Decal tutorial by Bigred over on BoLS as a guide in their production and they work like a charm.
As you can see from the pictures I've stuck to the codex company colour trim on the pauldrons and the assault symbol. I've also placed the squad number as directed by the codex on the right knee, although instead of roman numerals, I've gone with the Blood Angels style numbers (I'm at a loss to remember the name of the font).
On the jump packs I've again placed the squad number to the right and displayed the company colour in a blood drop (another nod to the BA's) on the left. The Sergeant has a codex skull, rank marking on his pack, again in company colour and the old RT rank insignia on his powerfist in the old Blood Drinker yellow for old times sake.
I did away with the black boots, an idea I'd taken from the old medic colours, also the green jump packs; painting both these areas red balanced the squad and gave them a far bolder, uniform look. I kept the green for their weapons, this is to honour their home planet San Guisuga; the colour signifying the Enclaves bountiful life, twinned with the weapon, revealing that life's lethal nature.
Lastly I used Ron's tutorial on Painting Space Marine helmet lenses over in the FTW archives, to clean up and improve my old black lens efforts.
I'm very satisfied with the overall result and hopefully with the basic template for my Chapter colours now ironed out I can press on with some more squads.