Tag Archives: Painting

Year of Battle Armor: Unit 1 – Corona Heavy Battle Armor

Late in 2017, I took a good look through the unassembled and unpainted BattleTech models in my collection, and I came to a decision about something I really wanted to see in 2018.

One of my favorite parts of the BattleTech universe and game is Battle Armor, and I have collected a ton of it. But I have relatively little of it put together, and even less of that painted. Long story short, I spent some time evaluating what I wanted to do about it, and decided that 2018 would be known as the “Year of Battle Armor”.

Fast forward to half way through February, and I realized that I had not yet started into my plans for the year. January got swallowed up by so many other things that I almost completely forgot about my ambitious goal.

Developed by Clan Star Adder, the Corona Heavy Battle Armor was one of the first non-standard Battle Armors produced during the Clan Invasion.

So, I did something about it. And here we are, in the first article of the Year of Battle Armor series. This year (2018), I plan to complete 2-3 Battle Armor centric projects per month and write here about the progress of each project and the year as a whole. I also hope that many of the units I complete during the YoBA will in turn show up in my BattleTech battle reports, so we should get to see follow ups on how the units are being used after they are completed here.

So, introduction of mission completed, how about I introduce the first unit for the Year of Battle Armor, the Corona Heavy Battle Armor!

Rather than give an overview of the history of the Corona, you can click on the link just above to visit the Sarna article, which says most of what I would repeat here anyway.


Step 1 – Line ‘Em Up

25 Corona suits, ready to form up.

I chose the Corona as the first unit for YoBA for a couple of reasons. I believe that it is a great suit of battle armor that I think gets overlooked, even when compared to others of the underused specialty Clan battle armors. I think this is in part due to the when the Corona was released in the game, in TRO: 3075. During that era of the game, while the Wars of Reaving were reshaping the landscape of the Clan Homeworlds, the majority of people, both in-universe and players, was focused on the Jihad. This may have led to the Corona going a bit unnoticed, especially compared to other battle armors in that TRO, like the Clan Medium Battle Armor and Golem Assault Armor, which got to participate directly in the Jihad. While the Corona did migrate into the IS Clan General list during this time, most Clans just did not incorporate it in any meaningful way.

And since my primary faction is Clan Ghost Bear, of course this unit is joining my favorite Clan.

Step 2 – Getting Them on the Bases

Corona Heavy Battle Armor is easily distinguished by its shoulder-mounted Medium Pulse Laser.

I was pleased that I could fit five models on a standard sized hex base. The bases I’m using were 3D printed and are the same size and dimensions as the hex bases available from Iron Wind Metals.

Some modeling putty provided the perfect soft ground to sink the models’ bases into and saved me the trouble of having to cut off the bases. This won’t always be possible with all battle armors, In fact, fitting five models to a base will not be possible in all cases.

Step 3 – Primer and Colors

You want blue? We got blue!

I use Army Painter paints for my hobby projects. I quick spray and touching up with a basecoat of matching Ultramarine Blue, and the Corona is ready for colors.

Battle Armor is tough to paint!

Keeping the paint scheme rather simple, I went with my standard 2nd Bear Regulars scheme. Blue torso and head, grey limbs, and some metal for the metal bits. Also, not shown in this picture, I added some dull yellow to the view plates on the heads.

Step 4 – Shading, Basing, and Varnish

Almost there.

I washed the models with Army Painter Soft Tone, thinking that I could darken it up if I needed to. When it was done, I decided that I liked the shading and moved on to the next part.

Ready for action!

This was my first time using the Army Painter Snow basing material, and I really like it. I’ve worked with other snow basing materials before, and this stuff was my favorite to work with. I think the coverage was better than what I’d used before, and it seemed to stick better to the glue.

Once the glue dried, it was outside for a quick round of varnish, and there we have it!

Why Use Corona Heavy Battle Armor?

So it made sense to me to wrap up each YoBA article with some pros and cons and a little bit about why you might want to use the Battle Armor I’ve just discussed.

I won’t take the time to break down all of the BattleTech vs Alpha Strike differences, but instead focus on what makes the Corona an interesting choice.


  • Longer Range in BattleTech than most other Battle Armors.
  • Mechanized capabilities for OmniMech transport
  • Solid damage profile-to-PV balance in Alpha Strike
  • Opponents unlikely to anticipate the pick, for element of surprise.
  • IS Clan General beginning in Civil War time period.


  • Less armor than standard Elemental Battle Armor
  • No Jump Jet capability, leaving the Corona on the ground.
  • Only one variant apart from the standard version, listed as Star Adder available only.

If you would like to learn more about Corona Heavy Battle Armor, you can check out the products listed below.

BattleTech Technical Readout: 3075

BattleTech Record Sheets: 3075 Unabridged – The Cutting Edge

Parting Shot

And finally, I’ll leave you all with this teaser of the next Battle Armor, currently on the table. Thank you for reading, and I hope you’ll join me for the rest of the Year of Battle Armor!

What is this Battle Armor? Share your guesses in the comments!

A Hobby Project: Clan Coyote Star


I recently found myself with three leftover Clan ‘Mechs. They didn’t make it into my Ghost Bear or Jade Falcon forces, so I sat them on the shelf and started looking through Clan RATs (Random Assignment Tables) from a few different books to see what kind of theme of which they might be the start.

After a little bit of searching, I came upon an opportunity. One of my favorite OmniMechs since I first saw it is the Savage Coyote, but not really having much of an interest in the Homeworlds Clans, I had never had the opportunity to pick one up. The three ‘Mechs for which I was trying to find a home were a Guillotine IIC, a Highlander IIC, and a Timber Wolf from the latest Intro Box Set. Seeing all of these ‘Mechs on the RAT for Clan Coyote, I saw my chance to finally get a Savage Coyote, and I immediately went to Iron Wind Metals’ website to see about filling the remaining spots in what was now designated as a Clan Coyote Star.

The Savage Coyote was an easy pick, and though I had to pay the archive fee, I thought the extra price would be worth the payout for the project.

The remaining spot in the Star came down to a choice between two ‘Mechs, a Rabid Coyote and a Septicemia. I like both ‘Mechs a lot, and I really wish I could have added them both to the roster. But I only needed one of them, so I did a little re-reading about Clan Coyote and ultimately came to the conclusion that the Septicemia was the better ‘Mech to fill the spot.

I liked it more for a few reasons. First, it contributes to the Star being a little heavier overall, which is a Clan Coyote trademark. Also, it put the composition of the Star at three OmniMechs and two BattleMechs, also a hallmark of Clan Coyote, who is known for fielding a large percentage of OmniMechs. Also, I really liked the idea of throwing in the slightly controversial design. Being associated with the Society, the Septicemia (also known as the Pariah) is the only ‘Mech chassis associated with the Society that is still approved for use by the Grand Council after the Wars of Reaving.

All of this culminated into placing a minis order from Ironwind Metals and a small hobby supplies order from The War Store.

The Project

I am not a master level painter. I usually paint for what I consider to be “tabletop standard,” so for the more serious hobbyists and painters who may read this, I know I cut a lot of corners (I don’t mind mold lines!), don’t pay attention to enough details, and rush through several steps. Here, along with pictures, is the story of my Clan Coyote Star Project.

1. Assembly


The first step was to get them put together and primered. I used the Army Painter Primer and Basecoat in Crystal Blue for this step. My plan was to use Army Painter’s Quickshade product for this project, so I counted the spray primer as the basecoat for these models and did not paint on an extra coat. As you will see in the next few pictures, I use a Hobby Lobby brand acrylic paint for my miniatures.

2. Colors


In this step, I picked out the parts that I wanted to be metal as well as applied grey and a few other colors to match the chosen scheme. The Silver color was a bit brighter than I would have liked it to be, and I was curious to see how the Quickshade would tone it down. The paint scheme for the Star is derived from Clan Coyote’s Alpha Galaxy, with the noted exception that I did not include the double stripe that is usually painted down the left torso and leg of each ‘Mech. After doing a rather bad job on one of the minis and having to cover it up, I decided that I did not have the patience to try to do that part of the paint scheme well, and I skipped that part of the scheme in order to have the minis look a little better.

3. Quickshade


This was the part of the process about which I was most nervous. I had never used Quickshade before, but I did know one thing: I was not going to dip the minis. I elected instead to paint it into the minis, and I ended up letting them dry for over 48 hours. I’m sure they would have been fine with the recommended 24 hour drying period, but I was unable to get back to the project for two days after this step. I was very pleased with how the Quickshade worked, giving a good, worn shading effect to the models.

4. Finishing Touches


After some basic basing, which included just painted the bases brown and using some simple flock, I applied a coat matte varnish. I didn’t use the Army Painter matte spray, just some generic spray that I’ve had around for a while, but I don’t think the result was any different.


The matte varnish muted the shiny Quickshade nicely, and I think the minis turned out looking like I spent far more time on them than I did.


Overall, I am very pleased with how this project turned out. I will probably take a little more care as I launch into painting my other units, but I am not at all disappointed with anything about how the Coyote Star turned out.

5. One Last Thing

I do plan to order decals for these ‘Mechs, so at some point in the future they will have Clan Coyote markings. It’s just a matter of getting them ordered and in, but for now, I’m considering the project completed.


Painting minis for the tabletop can be a daunting task, but I hope that I demonstrated that it doesn’t have to necessarily take a massive amount of time and effort to achieve good looking results that will make for great games on the tabletop whether playing on hex maps or tabletop terrain.

– Dave