Despite the wealth of different models available today, sometimes you just need to make your own. Or maybe the existing models don’t look as nice as they could, or you are trying to achieve a distinctive look for your force. Regardless of the reason, conversions (making models from multiple unconnected parts) and scratchbuilding (creating completely new models from raw materials) are very common in the wargaming hobby. This section will expand to include a few tutorials documenting my own efforts in this area.
Many model kits these days come with more parts than needed to build a particular configuration of the models. Those excess parts, left-overs from EBay purchases of used models, and other gathered pieces form the “Bitz Box” of a wargaming hobbyist. I have accummulated piles of material for different scales and systems over the years as you can tell from the photos below. I store everything sorted into compartmentalized tackle boxes that are labelled and stacked. The examples below show the “Warhammer Empire” box and the “Epic Armageddon” box. Pretty much every game systems that I ever touched has a box for it and some often have a box per army. Having these resources at hand is a great advantage during the conversion process.
Beyond existing pieces from my Bitz Box(es), I use the usual raw materials of wargaming converters. Various forms of wood (tooth pics, popsicle sticks, balsa wood, etc.), plastic card of different thickness and patterns, metal parts (chains, wire, rod, etc.), magnets of different sizes, and sculpting materials (Green Stuff, putty, etc.). One of the drawer columns in my gaming room is devoted to the store of such materials and the associated tools.