Wednesday, December 30, 2020

40K Adventurers - Astropaths - Astropath Choir - Orrery

Here's my final entry for the Rogue Trader '40k Adventurers' project I have been working towards all year- the Astropath Choir. I wanted to end on a high note and along with the Astropaths I produced an orrery to help them focus their prodigious psychic might.

The most important Astropaths to get done were the three old school ones- two from the Adventurers advert. I had previously painted the Talisman Timescape Astropath. I painted two many years ago, sometime in the 90s by the looks of the flocked bases. I didn't feel like paying out for unpainted ones so I ended up stripping the old paint. Here's what they used to look like:

 All of the official Games Workshop Astropaths. Talisman Timescape (1988), First 40k Flyer (1987), 40k Adventurers (1988), Forge World Hector Rex retinue (2009), Inquisitorial Acolyte (2002ish), 'Regimental Advisors' pack (2014ish).

Two females that sure look like Astropaths to me, one from Victoria Miniatures and the other from the 'Colony 87' range from Crooked Dice. The Victoria 'Astro Witch' has a prominent cog motif, so I decided she has some training in the ways of the Machine God. Certain mechanical devices that operate on a psychic level would require a psyker that also understands the machine spirit to some extent, so it seems logical to me that there would be some rare examples of cross-training beyond Techmarines. I painted a hem of gear teeth and a red eyewrap to symbolize her training in the mysterious ways of Mars.

The Colony 87 girl seems less orthodox- she doesn't have the traditional white staff and has somehow acquired a baby gyrinx.

The full choir.

I've been wanting to make a 40K orrery for a while now. I bought a Celestial Hurricanum several months ago and I have been ruminating on how to utilize it. About six weeks ago I chanced across an interesting articulated 3D printable orrery from Dragon's Rest and decided that was the way to go.

It took a few days to print all the parts, using a combination of copper filament and brown filament, with the idea that any handling would wear the edges and expose the copper. The copper filament is quite finicky to print and I had a lot of failures, but it seems to have worked out. I increased the diameter of two gears by .75mm (B and C) and the Z height on one (the Column D arm gear) to get better action. The orrery action is still slightly rickety (probably due to differing shrinkage rates on the PLA) but well within my acceptable range and I have to say this a sweet, sweet model. The plan is to motorize it once I can find a good 1 rpm low voltage motor.

I  replaced the original sun sphere with a dimensional Earth I found on Thingiverse. I also added two cherubs (old plastic Christmas ornaments) and a micro battleship I made, to represent the guardian role of the Imperial Navy and help 'grimdark' the orrery.

All in all I'm happy with the outcome of this sub-project, and the the 40K Adventurers overall. I ended up producing and painting a lot of related miniatures, maybe even more than the Adventurers themselves.

Lastly, a crappy video. Editing is a clearly a weak point of mine :)

Thanks for looking!


  1. Way to knock it out of the park on this one. I love the additions of the cherubs and mini gothic ship to the orrery....such a perfect touch.
    I believe the astropath in the originial 'inquisitor' novel had a pet cat....maybe colony 87 took some inspiration from her?

    1. Thanks :)
      I'll need to re-read that novel, its been a while!

  2. This post really does press all my buttons. Like you, I love the astropath concept, and it's brilliant to see a full choir rather than just an ancillary solitary astropath. The variety of greens you've used is great, and that orrery is absolutely perfect!

    1. Thanks, appreciated coming from an Astropath fan such as yourself :)

  3. That Orrey is freakin beautiful. Thanks for the explanation and sourcing.

  4. That's a fine collection of astropaths, and the orrery is awesome!