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Crab Skeleton

Urged on by the 'Traitor', Nort special forces converge on a pair of Rogue Troopers.

If you are making scenery for a sci-fi game then crab skeletons and the hard shelled remains of other sea-life can be a cheap and easy way to spice up the terrain. I particularly to combine them with the arid terrain, evoking an image of long-gone seas, perhaps banished by terraforming, where these giant and exotic creatures once roamed.
The cheapest source (if you don't count the holiday costs) for these is obviously finding them at the seaside yourself, but you can also find a variety of shells for sale at seaside souvenir shops.



Plaster Reinforcement
Many sea shells such as this crab shell and sea urchin shells are very fragile. If you just stick them to a base then they will just disintegrate. To prevent this, mix up some fairly runny plaster and smear a thick layer (half an inch or so) into the inside of the shell.

Ancillary parts
As well as the main crab carapace, I also dotted around some other fragments of shell to give the impression of the remains of a whole animal.

Attaching to base
The shell parts should be stuck to the base at Stage 2 of the arid terrain piece process, before the terrain piece has been textured. This will make it look as if they are almost embedded in the ground which will be more realistic than if they were scattered on top. Use plenty of PVA or epoxy resin.

The models here are from Alternative Armies. In the background are Rock Pillars.


The crab skeleton was practically this colour already, but it was painted to accentuate the texture.

1) Reddish brown wash - First it was given a light reddish brown wash. There was no base coat - the natural colour was allowed to come through to some extent.

2) Light brown drybrush - (fairly wet)

3) Dark Spots - Note the spots are different sizes to create a more random, organic look. One effect of these is to emphasise that the various fragments are part of one animal.

4) Final Drybrush - After the spots had been painted on, a delicate drybrush of 'Beige' Sandtex was applied over the top of the whole shell. This made the spots look less stark as well as providing final highlights for the main shell.

2001. All rights reserved.