If you are a long-lasting Space Marine collector, you probably have a lot of models on 25mm bases laying around that you might want to adapt to 32mm bases, either for aesthetical or gameplay reasons. One solution is to remove the whole base and replace it with the larger size. Another is to use an adapter that glues around the old base, increasing its size to 32mm. There are a few 32mm adapters out there, might this one be the best? Find it out after the jump, plus a complete step-by-step tutorial.
32mm base adapters by Tabletop Adapters were created through a successful Kickstarter campaign and are now available in bulk at ttadapters.com or at Bitzbox.co.uk. There are a few 32mm base adapters on the internet, by Secret Weapon or Eccentric Miniatures, and I looked into all of them, but in my opinion Tabletop Adapters are the best.
Here you can see the two-part adapters. They are made from black ABS plastic, just like regular Games Workshop bases, and can thus be glued with plastic glue. The diameter, height and bevel match GW's 32mm bases perfectly. What makes them truly stand apart from other adapters is the small bottom lid. 32mm bases are about 1mm taller than 25mm bases, which these adapters perfectly compensate, thanks to the lid. Once glued and painted, there is almost no way to tell the difference between the adapter and the real thing.
Games Workshop round 25mm bases have changed slightly over the years. I found that the current (c) GW 2006 bases fit align perfectly with the adapters even when painted, but older bases with (c) GW 2003 and 2005 might require some sanding. All depends on the thickness of your paint job though.
1. Inside of the adapters can be some leftover plastic from the casting process, which needs to be shaved away with a knife. As the adapter's plastic is very smooth, I recommend to give the adapter a few passes with very fine grit sand paper (I used paper with a grit of 1200). The slightly roughened up surface will increase the adherence of both glue and primer.
2. Check the fit of the adapter. If there is too much of a gap, sand down the trim of your model's base as needed. Once you are happy with the adapter's fit, attach it with plastic glue.
3. Fill the joint with Liquid Greenstuff and, once dry, smooth it out with your fine grit sand paper. Depending on the joint, you might need to repeat this one or two times for a perfect transition. For a perfect look, this step is critical so take your time, don't rush it.
4. Apply basing materials matching your original base's design.
5. Prime the adapter with brush-on primer. I used black Surface Primer by Vallejo. Thanks to the roughened up surface, the primer should stick very well.
6. Paint the base and trim according to your army's paint scheme. I recommend sealing the trim with varnish to prevent the paint from wearing off.
Here you can see the finished result. Could you tell the difference between the base with the adapter and the one without?
Tabletop Adapters offer an excellent alternative for ripping off your old bases, avoiding damage to the models' feet. They're about the same price as Citadel 32mm base packs, and you can make a saving when ordering in bulk. You can't go wrong with these adapters, so why not giving them a try.
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