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Grumpy Cave Bear

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Posts posted by Grumpy Cave Bear

  1. Bah! Tonight's update is one step forward, two steps back.


    I started late tonight, because we watched "Star Trek: Into Darkness" tonight. I liked the movie overall, though my inner nerd raged whenever the the plot did stuff with the Star Trek pseudo-technology that broke with canon. Lots of running, too.




    I finished filling in the gaps on the head and the base. They were quite smooth after sanding them flat and should pretty much disappear after painting.




    However, the primer on the wings are giving me trouble. I got suspicious and tried rubbing the primer after it had dried. In most spots it held tightly, but in some spots it lifted right off. If your model looks like this after rubbing it with a Q-Tip, your paint is not sticking.


    The way it holds in some spots and not others suggests that it was caused by my not cleaning the model thoroughly enough, and that the "wet water" approach I tried to break surface tension probably didn't cause this. Even so, I'm going to have to strip the primer and start again. Fortunately, this gesso just peels right off with pine floor cleaner. Any remaining mold release agent should get cleaned off too.


    Looks like tomorrow will be a binge cleaning night, and Friday will be another priming. I'll spare the gory details until it's primed and ready to paint.

    • Like 8
  2. Thanks for the comments. Here's tonight's update on Kaladrax:


    I went back over the parts I primed. Once the gesso had dried, it was holding pretty solid -- it wasn't coming off with a fingernail scrape, so I guess the gesso wasn't affected by the dish soap. It will cling even more tightly once it fully dries.




    As you can see, there are some bare spots where the gesso pulled apart as it shrank and stretched, usually on an inside corner. That's expected, and I touched those spots up with a second coat of gesso.


    More bothersome is where there are bubbles in the corners, which is something new to me. This is probably from the use of the dish soap as a wetting agent. It bubbled as I brushed, and collected along inside edges, where it dried as a foamy mass. Again, this can be avoided with more careful brushing and using liquid laundry soap instead of dish soap as a wetting agent. I'm trimming and sanding the bubbles out where I find them and repainting.


    I can't take credit for the soap droplet idea. I remembered today that I read in model railroad magazines about "wet water" -- a solution of equal parts distilled water and matte medium and one drop of liquid soap, used to bind ground foam, ballast and other scenery material to a layout or diorama. The soap droplet broke water's surface tension, so the mixture would soak into the arranged scenery material without moving or disturbing it.




    I primed the torso and spine tonight, and the grey gesso pointed out mold lines that I missed against the white Bones material. I'll have to trim and reprime those spots again once it's dry. Sharp eyes will pick out the bits of moss and other natural materials I brought home today as color references.




    I sanded the putty I put on the head and base, and found there was still a slight depression around the areas I filled. I went over them with Gunze Sangyo's Mr. Surfacer 1000, which is sort of a very thick solvent-based paint that's used for filling in scratches and shallow surface blemishes. It can be wet-sanded very smooth, once it's dry, which I'll try tomorrow night.

    • Like 7
  3. [Edited to reflect a thread split.]


    After seeing some of the incredible WIPs here, I wanted to try doing some of my own. So, I decided to start with something simple: Kaladrax!




    Over the Christmas holidays, I went over and trimmed and sanded all the mold lines from the model. Kaladrax's details are rather soft, but that was an advantage here, as I didn't have to worry much about losing any detail as I trimmed.


    The base was annoying to clean up. Every time I looked, there was another mold line I missed. The spine cleanup was a multi-day nightmare.




    Remember, always cut away from your hand. I was lucky this time, as I just poked myself only enough to draw blood. Personally, I sometimes think that a big project isn't really underway until I've anointed it with blood. Let's hope this isn't enough to rouse an ancient dracolich from aeons of slumber.


    That brings us to tonight: puttying and priming.


    When I boiled the parts to reshape them, the torso halves came apart. It was what I was planning to do, since there was a big gap between them. I've taken the opportunity to fill the gap with putty.




    I'm using Tamiya Epoxy Putty, since it's what I have on hand. It's designed for resin and styrene models, but should work here. I haven't used Green Stuff, but I expect it works the same as this: Trim two equal pieces from each stick, then fold them together until they're blended. Keep it wet while you're working it, to keep it from sticking to your hands. It's workable for about 1/2 hour or more before it begins to harden, and takes more than a day to fully cure.




    I made a long string of putty, then wrapped it around the outside of the torso seam. I then ran a bead of AC glue (super glue) around the inside, and on the inner alignment studs.




    I quickly jammed them together and squeezed them together with a few clamps, and set it aside until the AC set.




    There were a few lines and holes to fill on the model, particularly a large injection hole in the middle of the head (above, left) and a meet line or two on the base (above, right), where the Bones material cooled lightly before meeting, leaving a seam. Normally, I'd leave it as a crack in the stone, but since it overlaps a carved crack, I felt it had to go.




    I jammed putty into the gaps, then smoothed it over again and again with a putty knife, until the only material left was in the gaps. The head especially is too soft for this, and I had to add material back into the hold several times until I could smooth the hole over properly without leaving a depression. I'll deal with any surface roughness after it hardens.




    Back to the torso. I removed the clamps and trimmed the squeezed out putty away. Look! No gaps! I even sculpted a bit of rib past where it just ends on the casting, as you can see in the background two photos up.


    Now I just leave it to harden, which in this cold weather, may take two or more days.




    For the rest of the parts, I washed them and taped over the parts that will be glued together. Then I primed them with Liquitex Neutral Gray Gesso, as I expect the model to be painted in a mix of light and dark colors. This stuff shrinks as it dries and leaves a very smooth surface to paint on. (Also, you can never have enough clamps.)


    I had some trouble with the hydrophobic nature of Bones, and for this model at least I was seeing some serious beading. It's been rather hit and miss before, so I tried something different. Remembering an old science experiment about surface tension and water beading, I dumped a generous amount of gesso onto my mixing surface, then just barely touched the bristles of a wet mixing brush to a drop of dish soap -- the tiniest of smidgens. I then worked this thoroughly into the gesso, and painted it onto the model. Much, much less beading!


    I was left with a secondary problem -- more paint bubbles -- but that was as easy to solve as blowing on the gesso, and could be solved in the future by using a touch of liquid dishwasher detergent instead. It remains to be seen if this affects the primer adhesion.


    And that's a good place to leave off tonight, as all this dries.

    • Like 22
  4. I have to say, I was rather impressed with my first order with Reaper.


    Originally, I didn't get the snow goons promo with my order -- the entire order was there, and the promo was shown on the invoice, just not in the box. I sent an e-mail (after hours) and got a response the very next day, indicating that the promo would be sent.


    Yesterday I was pleasantly surprised when the snow goons arrived, and by way of apology, the package contained one bottle each of Wreath Green and Ginger Cookie!


    Good work, Reaper! I'll direct order from you again in the future!

    • Like 11
  5. Yes, I think I am using the term wrong. I saw it on the basing materials compendium, and since it is made by Micro Mark, I assumed it was the same thing. To be clear, I am using the "Green Putty" from micro mark, it comes in a tube and is not combined, instead it uses toluene as a drying agent. A tube was $4-5 at a local hobby store, but the stuff is dangerous. The back is full of warnings about not to touch it or breathe the fumes, and I can see why. Here is a link to the precise product:




    It is also quite sticky, though the oil definitely mitigates that, and not the easiest thing to sculpt. I'd say it's good for simple basing, but I wouldn't use it for anything other than that.

    That's Squadron Green putty, which is very good for filling seams and gaps on styrene models like airplane and cars, because the solvent softens the surrounding plastic. You cover over the seam with a generous amount of the putty, and then sand it down smooth. There's also Squadron White, which is a finer-grained variety of the putty.


    As you said, the stuff uses toluene a solvent, which means it shrinks a little when it dries. It also means it should probably go on in several thin layers, or it'll take forever to dry, or it may damage (craze) the surrounding styrene -- and I have no idea what effect toluene has on Bones material. (Experiment time!). Don't use large amounts in a small enclosed space.


    It's not the best stuff for sculpting or building up volume, though it should work okay for basing like you've done.


    That said, I did manage to use a small amount of Squadron White to fill a molding gap on a Bones figure, when I couldn't get any of the epoxy putties I had to stay in place.


    Usage tip: If the Squadron Green dries out, don't throw it away. Cut open the tube, break up the dried putty, put it in a paint bottle with a metal cap, add a little more solvent, and seal it up. It will be usable again in a few days.

    • Like 1
  6. Thanks for your comments.


    Sadly, I realized too late the colors in the pictures above were really washed out, and of course I can't take more pictures now, as they've been sent out. I may try to adjust them later, but don't hold out much hope of improving on them.


    I did manage to find a group WIP photo that is much closer to the actual colors, for comparison:




    And my single personal favorite mini is this one:




    Eyes of a killer, and all that.

    • Like 10
  7. I've recently painted with Daler-Rowney acrylic inks. The resulting minis are shown in this thread: http://www.reapermini.com/forum/index.php?/topic/52852-gcbs-painted-miniatures/


    I found that Daler-Rowney inks and Liquitex acrylic gloss medium mixed quite well... in fact, I added the gloss medium to thicken up the inks because I found they were a bit too thin to start with.


    Here's what I found about painting with Daler-Rowney inks:

    • Durability is not really an issue. I test-painted a scrap sheet of clear plastic with several D-R acrylic inks (and with no medium) and let it dry. It took longer to dry and cure than most acrylic paints, and it was pretty susceptible to rubbing off before curing, but once it did cure, it held up to rinsing, scratching and flexing as well as any acrylic I've used. There was one incident with the ink rubbing off a model after drying, but I suspect it was due to soap residue left on the model before painting, as it was limited to one spot.
    • Opacity is an issue for the non-metallic inks. The inks are not exactly transparent, but they are heavily pigmented and not very opaque, which means that variation in paint thickness would produce uneven colors, especially with darker inks, like blue. This can be used to good effect with practice; otherwise it tends to look blotchy, so no covering of large areas with undiluted ink. I'd bet that you could mix the inks with a white acrylic to even out the color.
    • Metallic D-R inks have much larger mica flakes than typical miniatures metallic paints do. When used undiluted, this is not an issue, as the mica flakes lie flat and produce an even shine; but when mixed with another medium, the mica flakes won't lay flat, and will produce a speckled appearance on a miniature.
    • The ink colors are very bright, especially when painted over a metallic silver or white.
    • Like 1
  8. Wow. That's some army painting. What are you using them as? I've painted a few IMEF figures to date, but there's no way I could do this many of them. Kudos.


    I painted them as a commission, my first in over 15 years. What game the owner is using them for, I don't know. I lean more towards fantasy figures, personally, though I have a Dust Tactics set I want to paint up someday.

  9. I checked last night and each was definitely listed as "0 in stock." I checked just now and I do see a non-zero number for every one except #2. I'm guessing it was just a glitch in the system, or perhaps they were unsure of the accuracy of the # of each in stock - so they set each to 0 to prevent new orders until they could verify the inventory. Something like that, I'm sure.


    I'm glad, actually, I still might get #s 1 and 5. ::):



    I already ordered, minus the LTPKs. That's okay, I guess. I really only needed specific paint colors, though the kits (and the stocking bonus) would have been nice. But there's no way I can justify a second order, especially after I lock in the Bones II Kickstarter pledge.



    Did you guys all buy a bunch of LTPKs? I just went to check if they had #2 (purest optimism, really) and they now *all* say that they're out of stock. :blink:

    They haven't had No. 2 in a loooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooong time.

    Yes, but what Mrs. Blueberry is saying is that all the others are gone, too.

    Brand new poster... Hi.


    I just had to create a new account, and ask about this: I put two of the LTPKs into my shopping cart a few days ago, so I could order when the right mini came up in the 12 days promotion. They're still there, though I can't increase their numbers and I don't dare decrease them.


    Does the ordering system account for items in shopping carts? If I place the order now, will I still get them, or will I get informed they're out of stock? Does anyone know?

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