Trollblood Hearthgut Hooch Hauler, painted, front.

Painting the Hearthgut Hooch Hauler

A thumbnail of Tom

I thought I had posted this walkthrough of my Hooch Hauler being painted, but I guess I forgot!

What a barrel of fun

What an amazing model. It comes as a kit, with the barrel being a seemingly solid piece of resin. This thing has a little weight to it. The catwalks, trim, seats, catapult, chassis, wheels, bears, and trollkin are all accessory pieces that need trimming and sometimes sanding before being glued on. I found it easier to paint up the wooden barrel first. In these photos, the catwalks and catapult tower are glued on, but the chassis still isn’t. The wood effect is actually part of the casting, so it’s fairly easy to make it look like you know how to paint. I used some pale reds, greens, and yellows for the wood. Then applied Vallejo Woodgrain to the wood, letting it sink into the lines and stain the first layer of paint. Any areas missed were cleaned up with some black wash.

The chassis had a similar wood effect on the wheels. There were some chunky bits that gave way to the knife when I trimmed the flash, so I made sure to hide those parts of the wheel by placing the broken bits on the bottom, where it would contact the base. The metal slats would get a gunmetal treatment.

I’ve seen bears done with the black undertone and white drybrush, and I’ve done Borka 2 that way. I think they look better as a blonde with white. It’s how they look to me when I watch nature videos. Especially if recently cleaned by the ocean. Sometimes, they seem brownish underneath, more so in the summer, or if they’ve been in the dirt. These two bears got the blonde treatment with dirty paws.

At the same time, since I had some yellows out (Vallejo 70.923, in the background), I used that to color the leather seats. Dark brown provided stitching color. Random colors started to fill in the shields, purples, reds, greens, whatever I had on hand.

The whole thing seemed to come together pretty well. I tried to push myself to pay attention to detail, and to use shading and highlighting to bring out the various features of this model. Note, the left side gun isn’t manned by the normal Northkin, but by a whelp. I somehow managed to lose one of the dudes while I was painting (probably because of the messy desk).

With everything glued in, there was only one little thing missing. The driver looks like he’s grabbing reins, but clearly isn’t. I drilled some holes for the controls, and plopped in some thick rope. In retrospect, the rope is probably a little too thick, but what would you use to control these bears?

This last phase also had me touching up any missed shadowing and snow effect that didn’t quite look appropriate.


I think this piece looks fantastic, on the shelf and on the table. Look for it in some future battle reports with Borka 2, and possibly other Storm of the North lists.