Sunday, February 22, 2009

Tutorial: Magnetic Eldar Weapons

If you're like me, I hate closing off my options. I don't like gluing optional pieces on like weapon choices when my mind could change later. To solve this pretty much everything I own that has optional weapons is magnetic. Here's my most recent one, a magnetic wave serpent (though this also works on Falcons).

What you'll need is a ton of magnets. I usually buy from K&J Magnetics. The size I use for my wave serpents is the 1/8 by 1/32.

The first step is to get all the magnets facing the same direction. In the following diagram, the polarity facing outside is the one indicated. This way, weapons don't have to be left side or right side, they're universal.

Here's the parts all laid out.

What I do is set the magnets in a stack, then with a permanent marker, mark the top surface of the magnet. For arbitrary purposes, we'll call it positive. I then glue it with the positive side (the marked side) facing out on the central axis (after cutting off the thinner axis that you were supposed to slide the weapon on normally). I mark the next magnet, then glue it with the marked side facing the same way, but on the other side of the central axis (so the marked side is covered). Now it's just a matter of marking the top magnet and making sure they're all facing the same way.

Do the same to the weapons. Make sure that the positive magnet is facing the same way as the magnet on the central axis. If you did it right, when you glue the second magnet on the weapon it should naturally fall in its proper alignment. After the glue dries (and not before, I've learned from hard experience) it should be able to fit together just fine like this. (Edit: See my update at the bottom of this article)

For the housing on either side, you will have to drill in a little bit or else it sits way too far off the weapon. Make sure not to go too deep, you want the surface of the magnet flush with the housing.

Now you should be able to swap weapons out with ease! I haven't painted my weapons yet, but I'm working on it. I also adapted this for Vypers, so I can use these weapons on my Vypers. Furthermore, I have adapted my Falcon to this as well.

As you can see below, it's the same Wave Serpent but with bright lances now. Later on I'll have a tutorial on how to magnetize your Vypers. I also have magnetic Carnifexes, Warriors and Hive Tyrant.

Post Update: After experimentation I have popped all the magnets off the weapons and am in the process of drilling them out. I have decided to drill into the round part, the base of the weapons and glue the magnets in so they're flush with the surface. I did this for several reasons. First, it helps it not look so separate, everything becomes closer together. Secondly, it makes fitting the same weapons into the Vyper housing so much easier. While I already widened my Vyper housings, I would have to do the same for my future War Walkers which would not be so easy. Fixing the Vypers would be easier than widening the War Walkers.


  1. I use the same magnet site and pretty much the same method. Where mine differ is I cut out the round mounting area in the bottom of the weapon. Two of the 1/8"x1/16" round magnets fit into the carved out area perfectly. The additional benefit of this is I don't have to drill into the casing.

    Because this method leaves the magnet flush with the edge of the weapon, I've been able to use these to create mounting points so I can swap between Vypers, all my tanks, Guardian platforms, War Walkers, and even my old Wraithlord.

  2. Very nice and useful. These kind of guides are fantastic for us that just recently got into the hobby. Good work!

  3. Hey, I found your blog to be quite informative.

    Well done.

    I posted a link to it in a blog that I calling "Friday's Article of Interest"

    Hope you get some good traffic from it.

  4. Hi there.
    Very useful post, thank you.
    Could I ask you a suggestion?
    Do you think that 1/8"x1/16" magnets would be good for Space Marines Terminator arms, or the diameter is too wide/they are too thick?
    Would be better 1/16"x1/32" instead?

    Thanks a lot again.



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