Warhammer 40K Chainsword- 3D model, print and paint


Active Member
Hey guys,
I shared this on Reddit a while back and thought you might like to see it. I designed and modelled this Chainsword from 40K, then 3D printed and finished it.

Model was made in Zbrush using reference from one of the older space marine codex. I wanted the scale to be more in Human scale, as if it belonged to one of the human Commissars.
View attachment pBCalDk.jpg
Sliced the model in Cura and printed on my Ultimaker 2 extended. I added tubes running the length of each section so that I could reinforce the whole prop with threaded steel rods for strength.

After the model was printed I realized that it was very unbalanced. I decided to make a high temp silicone mould of the skull pommel and cast out a lead-free white metal version to add weight. The skull now weighs about 700g (1.54lbs) and balanced the whole prop very well.
2zHxGx7.jpgView attachment sH5ivq1.jpg
I used a lot of bondo and filler primer to fill the layer lines, so much sanding!

I printed 2 teeth of the chain and then made a quick block silicone mould to cast out multiples.
Painted using Alclad metallic lacquers to give a real metal finish. I also used a bit of goldfinger paint to add a little extra to the eagle.The small brass rivets are actually the tops of nails from a picture framing set.

I used washes of oil paint to give realistic grime.
View attachment tclPbs5.jpg

The handle was wrapped in real leather and then given a light wash of oil paint.

If you want you can see more finished pictures here

Thanks for reading!



New Member
This is amazing! I remember seeing this on the 3dprinting subreddit. I saved a link to it for inspiration haha!

Did using multiple threaded rods through the models help with alignment?


Active Member
Thanks so much!
Yes indeed, I used a total of 4 threaded rods, and the two central ones ran the whole way from the pommel to the tip, the outer ones mainly supported and aligned the large red panel areas.


Active Member
Awesome way to hide the contacts between the printed parts (darker areas between the rivets). Going to steal it for my next chainsword design :D


Active Member
Thanks! I got the idea when looking through some old White Dwarf magazines and saw some John Blanche artwork of a tech priest with a chainsword that had lots of panels and sections.