I was recently asked to build a Riptide with an open cockpit for an old acquaintance. I agreed to take on the project as long as I could work on it for Golden Demon. The photos below show the first few stages of the build, the most complicated being the hatch, of course.
I thought I might have to do a lot of hacking to get a kneeling pose (I really wanted one of the thighs to be a good place to position the pilot), but GW have learned a lot since the Dreadknight and you can very easily pose the legs this way.
Finding the right place to cut the front off was much trickier. Fortunately I left the "shoulder" assemblies off until I'd sorted everything else out. The white plasticard around the opening was primarily to tidy things up, after all the hacking away.
Here's the hatch with its back and front on display. I filled in the back (interior) to smooth things out, and then added various dials/buttons/displays that look like Tau controls.
And here it is with the hatch in place.
And with the command seat. Initially I built a "capsule" of sorts that was designed to slide into the body cavity. Unfortunately to pilot the model the Tau would need to have his shoulders removed, so a different solution was needed. I curved a piece of plasticard up in the back of the body, and built a few more display/control panels (seen stuck next to the seat above and below) to hide some of the items inside the cavity.
As well as the Riptide itself, I'm planning on painting up the support systems in case my acquaintance wants to add them at a later date.
And here's the final pose. The tank commander will be switched out for a kneeling pilot.
Until next time!