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Posts posted by Painfully

  1. The advice on the internet is endless. Sometimes it's better just to dive into the deep end of the pool, and learn from the doing. Once you get to a personal plateau, then is a good time to seek out more advice.


    My one and only goal with my first mini was to "stay inside the lines." I bought a basic set of 8 colors of paints, plus a silver and gold too. I ended up buying some more browns and tan colors just because I had so many leather straps and pouches and scabbards so close together, but keep in mind at this point I wasn't even brave enough to mix colors more than half-and-half with another color.


    Overall, it was a great first figure.


    I had no idea this hobby is like crack. Honest.


    Welcome to the club!

  2. I'd like to see more dungeon dressings like fancy portcullis, treasure chests, altars, magic circles, etc. This is also true for metal figs, but I think it is better suited for the plastics, and there is very little of this sort of thing readily available to gamers.


    I could easily imagine a "tavern pack," "treasures pack," "wizard's lab pack," etc.


    I would absolutely buy this kind of stuff for gaming.

  3. Your timing couldn't be more perfect.


    You will want to take note of the midnight release of 4th edition this Thursday night (i.e., Friday morning). The store is open until 2am and you can expect to find a variety of Chicagoland's finest gamers there to browse the latest edition.


    <a href="http://www.games-plus.com" target="_blank">http://www.games-plus.com</a>



    Oh, and I almost forgot that there is the WotC Wordwide D&D day Saturday after the release too! Be sure to call or sign-up in person.

    *end edit*


    Also, the store hosts an EN World gameday 3 times a year. It's always a great way to meet more gamers in the area, both new and old.


    <a href="http://www.enworld.org/showthread.php?t=227437" target="_blank">http://www.enworld.org/showthread.php?t=227437</a>

  4. I didn't see it mentioned already, so I'll add that it's important to use a very pointy brush. Practicing eyes with a cheap brush is only going to frustrate you.


    Windsor & Newton series 7 brushes are an excellent choice. I prefer a size 0 for eyes.


    Wouldn't it be great if Reaper did a video tutorial for their craft section?

  5. I use a shower tote.


    It doesn't look like much, but I get 108 MSP's (9 rows of 12 slightly offset) to fit perfectly into the bottom layer of the large tote. There is room for another 108 as a second layer, or you can carry other loose items on top. I carry about 30 extra paints on top along with a water jar, and any new figs I buy at the store.


    The basket's top layer gets unloaded when I set up to paint, but I leave the bottom layer in the tote. I can pull any one bottle from the bottom layer, and the rest of the paints don't shift or move out of place at all. It is the perfect way to carry exactly 108 paints, as every bottle has its predetermined place.


    I've got the deep Plano box mentioned above, and I still prefer my tote simply because there is no wasted space. It doesn't hurt that my rows are neatly arranged in 3's too. ::):


    Cost for the tote is about $8, and you can find it at The Container Store.

  6. Tamiya is very popular among the model R/C, and military modeling crowds. I also found Tamiya paints at my local train hobby shop.


    I consider my Tamiya primer an essential "best" tool, right up there with W&N series 7 brushes, and my 900 grit diamond file. Anything less compromises quality, and I just cannot allow that. Some of us less skilled painters need all the help we can get! :lol:


    I've tried Floquil, and it tends to be more "runny" than most other primers. This is something you just have to get used to if you continue to use Floquil. The fact that it smells more, and takes about 24 or more hours to dry are also negatives that helped me choose Tamiya over Floquil.

  7. Diamond files don't require any special cleaning. Just be sure to use water as a lubricant, and don't let the files rub against each other.


    For regular files, a brass brush, or file card will do the trick. Just brush along the grooves.


    I do have a cut 8 file that is absolutely impossible to clean--the grooves are finer than a single wire of a wire brush. I have yet to find a file card small enough to clean it, but a small brass brush does get it somewhat clean.

  8. Not Reaper figs, but I saw 30 undead pirates for $40 from Old Glory Miniatures, and they are the closest thing to perfect for representing Pirates of the Carribean figures. I saw a friend painting them at my FLGS, and they look great! Now he just needs to build a ship!


    Just search for ghostly pirates (pic is in color, and doesn't show all 30 figs unfortunately).


    But their selection of pirates in general is quite impressive. There offer pirates in a tavern (gambling/drinking), captured pirates (including one in a cooking pot), female pirates, dead pirate bodies, etc.

  9. Water is perfectly fine for use with most acrylic paints. Brands like Reaper, Vallejo, and Games Workshop all work with water very well.


    Vallejo has alcohol-based acrylics which use alcohol as a thinner. It is limited to a few metallic colors, and the labels indicate that they use alcohol.


    You will run into certain brands that aren't completely happy with just water, e.g., Tamiya acrylics use their own brand of thinner.

  10. Last I've heard from Nikmal, he will try to make the gameday, but family issues may require his attention on short notice. Digital [email protected] has fallen to the WotC side (of prepainted plastic minis), and later in the sign-up thread, he mentions that he will not be able to make the gameday. But, if he shows up, we'll be sure to have everything he needs to jump right into things. ::):


    I'm running the EN World Chicago Gameday painting events this time around. I am the Slowski of painters, so you are in good company. The competition is purely optional, and I will mention that the prize is much more practical than the bobble-head trophy I won at the previous gameday. :lol: The paint-and-take is there to encourage people new to painting, and the speed paint option is there for people who like to compete. If nobody competes, I will likely offer my prize some other way--perhaps hot potato, or eenie-meenie-miney-moe, or just moe. ::P:


    If people want to grab a paint-and-take figure, and then sit and work on their own stuff, that's fine by me. The paint-and-take figs are provided by myself, not Reaper, and this means you can expect to see a wider variety of figures, some large, and even a few multi-part figures (all completely assembled, cleaned, and primed, of course). Walk-ins are welcome, but sign-up is recommended to reserve your seat.


    I hope to see you there!

  11. Eternal Tools is where I ordered from in the UK. It took almost three weeks for my order to arrive to the Chicago area. Overall, I'm happy with the products, packaging, and service, and intend to order from them again. They even have a handy currency converter on their website. All prices include shipping, so no hidden charges. I'd buy my files again even if they charged double, or even triple the price! I expect these will easily last a lifetime for filing pewter.


    I cannot recommend enough the fine (600 grit) and ultrafine (900 grit) small diamond files. The round files I bought are absolutely perfect for minis! With these new tools, mold lines melt away like butter under a hot knife! Okay, not really--but, very, very close! Did I mention they are better than whatever files you're using right now? ::P:


    As for quality, if you look around their site, you'll see that they are a specialist in diamond tools, especially as it relates to watchmaking. They sell some great stuff. Vallorbe swiss files cut 8 (the finest grade) are available through them, which are recognized as THE WORLD'S BEST FILES (used by swiss watchmakers). [i got me a cut 8 file too, just to compare. I like it. But the price difference doesn't justify the miniscule performance difference IMO. The cut 8 loads more easily, while the diamond just keeps cutting through all the while.] They carry diamond drill bits, diamond polishing paste, diamond slitting discs, a precision carbide drill set, and more.


    Although they don't list who manufactures the diamond files I purchased, I will not hesitate to recommend them to anyone who wants a FANTASTIC diamond file! In fact, what are you waiting for?! Go on. Click it. You NEED these files! ::D: Did I mention the cutting like butter part? :wub:

  12. ...I've got at least 300 points to dust off and send. I hope Reaper stocks up on some of those Reaper keychains. ::D: They'll make a nice giveaway at the weekly paint night at Games Plus in Mt Prospect, IL--the greatest gamestore on earth (or pretty darn close)!

  13. A black wash works for chainmail just fine IMO. But, you'll eventually have other techniques at your disposal and will want to try them.


    I think until you've tried EVERY technique you can find, or make up yourself, you are still at a stage where it is your job to mess up, if only just to discover what does and does not work.


    Don't worry about messing up. Even the pros mess up. The biggest difference comes in how well you can fix your mistakes. ::D: I'd even go so far as to say that the difference between pros and amateurs is that the pros have made many more kinds of mistakes, and learned how to fix them. So, make every mistake you can sooner, and you'll get better sooner! At least, that's my theory.

  14. I just purchased a pair of round diamond files from overseas. They cost under $13 each, and came in 600 grit, and 900 grit. I've been prepping minis all day today, and have never been happier doing filing work. But, I'm sure that will wear off--it is still prep work after all. ^_^ But, right now, these are the awesome-est files ever! :wub::wub::wub:


    If you've only tried 220 grit from Micromark, I think you are probably working too hard. ::P:

  15. I don't think Reaper makes any, but I use a glaze medium from Vallejo Model Colors range. It is great stuff.


    Glazing makes colors more transparent. Think of it as a clear paint. Mix it 50/50 with a color, and what you get is a more transparent color--not the same as just using gunk or water.


    Used with metallics, it thins the concentration of the metallic flakes, which results in a dimmer look, and is usually more appropriate for the scale of the minis. Without it, all my metallics would come out looking too bright.


    What you also might want to try is mixing metallics with a transparent black/brown, like VMC smoke. This is good for shading metallics (and most other dark colors too actually).

  16. Mine is sent!


    My postal clerk says it will be there in 7 business days!


    I'm one of those painters that never seems to finish a mini, so naturally, I wish I had just a bit more time with the fig. But, deadlines are important, and so off she went into the vast abyss that is the worldwide postal system.


    I hoped I packed it okay--loose paper towel folded for bulk, then bubblewrap, then a ziplock bag puffed full of air, then foam peanuts, and then the box.


    I included some extra bowstring in case the original one snaps off or something. It is a fine copper filament wire.


    Maybe I'm just worrying too much...I'm not used to sending off my minis to a home far, far away. :unsure:


    I'm so going to be unhappy if anything bad happens to my fig...er, I mean their fig.


    *Painfully looks for his inner buddah* -_-

  17. I'm putting on the final dullcote layers today, and will ship out tomorrow (the deadline!).


    It is shipping overseas though, so it may take more than a week. I will leave it at the mercy of the US Postal Service.


    Unfortunately, my camera is on loan, and I won't be able to take pics before I have to send it out. :( But hopefully the recipient can snap a few pics for the rest of us.

  18. Be sure to use chemically resistant gloves when playing with strong chemicals. And, if you are using a toothbrush to clean those minis, then you might consider goggles and a respirator too. The brushing action can spray a fine mist of the chemical into the air, causing irritation to your face, and especially eyes. Yes, its a burden, but its either that, or let your body sponge up those chemicals known to cause cancer in the state of California.


    I prefer toluene for the quick jobs. No messing around with overnight, or even an hour of soaking. We're talking dip for 5 min and brush it off. Rinse and repeat if needed. It's available at any hardware store. Wear gloves, and use proper ventilation! :wacko: NOT for plastic minis, but excellent for pewter.


    Acetone is a good second choice, and available as fingernail polish remover in most large supermarkets that have a pharmacy/drugstore section, but you'll get a better price at hardware stores if you want larger quantities. It's safe for some, but not all plastics. I understand it has successfully been used to clean paint off of the WotC plastic minis as long as it does not soak for too long.


    Pine-sol. Be sure to wear gloves, or you can expect to have chemical burns! You'll start by feeling itchy and then your skin might swell...you don't wanna know the rest!

  19. The water looks good. You should maybe try some of the clear acrylic mediums from Golden if you try water effects again--it's good stuff. I'm still playing around with it myself, but I like them a lot.


    I think the rocks are fine without adding anything. They are being hit by rough waters after all. I feel like he needs an opponent on another rock facing him or something though. Otherwise, is he fighting the water itself?

  20. Hot glue can appear too yellow IMO. Maybe there is a clear type that I haven't seen yet though.


    If anybody has seen pictures of Niagra Falls, the misty, crashing water at the base of the waterfall is what I am needing to simulate. I'm contemplating cotton balls pulled into very thin strands, and held in with hair spray as a possible option, but I think it might come off looking like smoke. I'll test it soon anyway.

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