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Large Fig. Questions

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I've noticed that when I get minis that come in multiple pieces, they often don't line up precisely.  The bigger the mini, the more gaps and distortion there seem to be.

 

Specifically, I recently got #10006 Gauth (!!!GRANDFATHER! OF DRAGONS!!!)!) and the pieces of the body have some significant gaps now that I've got him assembled.  I'd like to paint him for the 2015 annual diorama contest, but before I prime I'd like to make sure my finished product is going to look smooth and complete.

 

Does anyone have any suggestions?  What materials do you use?  Etc.

 

Also, I've never done a fig this big before.  Is one bottle of paint going to be enough for the base color, or do I need to order more before I get started? I use the 1/2 oz bottles of Master Series Paint.  I'd hate to get started on my base coat and find that I don't even have enough paint.

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Gauth is an awesome mini, I look forward to seeing him completed. I'm not an expert by any means but I'm happy to share what little I do know. You'll need Green Stuff or similar for the gap filling. You'll probably want to invest in some sculpting tools to help blend the GS into the existing sculpt. I'd order more paint to be safe. I'd also suggest starting a work in progress thread for him. That way you'll have a good way of asking for any advice you may need. Without it getting lost in the shuffle. Plus, we're suckers for WIPs. ;-D

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You'll also want to pin his joints.  He's a heavy fellow, and the weight of the joint could overwhelm your glue.  For a dragon of that size I'd pin the wings and use an epoxy 2 part glue rather than simple superglue.  One he's pinned, etc, you can stuff the gaps with the greenstuff and mold it to look like scales.  Andy has a nice tutorial on assembling cinder, who while smaller, follows the same principles!  Definitely start a WIP so we can cheer you on!!!  Welcome to the forums!!!

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Thanks, I'll have to get some of this...green stuff.  And here I was hoping to prime this weekend...  :down:

 

Corporea, what do you mean by "pin his joints"?  I'm not a sculptor at all...

 

And thanks for the welcome.  I've actually been lurking these forums for about a year off and on, but mostly just looking at painting tutorials.  Kind of intimidated by all the talent around here, but you seem a welcoming bunch, and I appreciate the encouragement.

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Pinning = drilling holes into the figure where two parts are to be joined (on both pieces), then taking a bit of wire (piano wire, brass wire, or even paper clips) and gluing inside of these holes. This gives more stability when you attach them together by gluing or using epoxy. 

 

The tutorial that Corporea linked, showed exactly how to do the whole process of pinning and gluing and preparation to get the figure ready to go.

 

ETA: Also, welcome to the forum!

Edited by ub3r_n3rd
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Before tackling a project of this size, I really suggest you spend a few hours going through this thread:

http://forum.reapermini.com/index.php?/topic/32513-the-tutorials-database/

 

It has a TON of info, and several articles on gap filling, green stuff, pinning and nearly any other subject you're not familiar with.

 

It really is an invaluable wealth of collected knowledge. Indispensible!

 

Aye, and welcome! Please WIP!

Edited by Baphomet69
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Yeah- when I got my first dragon (cinder actually!), Andy's tutorial was what I followed to put her together.  He's very thorough and when you get near the bottom he even goes into how to make scales and everything!  It was my first experience with greenstuff!  Uh- search either green stuff, 2 part epoxy putty or GF9 on amazon and you should come up with some options.  reaper also sells a small amount here. There's also a thread in the sculpting forum on sculpting putties. For small minis I just use jewelry wire to pin, but for a big dragon, I'd use at least a paperclip if not the brass rod Andy's suggested.

 

The idea behind pinning is to add extra stability to a joint.  The simple ball and socket joints most minis come with are just not strong enough to hold up to regular handling.  I've had minis I neglected to pin break apart while I was handling them just to finish painting, not to mention if I accidentally dropped them.  If you ever intend to use something for gaming, I'd always pin it, due to chronic abuse by gamers!  I think of pinning as fixing a joint permanently in place.  Even our human joints can pop out!  So the pin extends the joint deep into the metal on both sides, and effectively lengthens the amount of surface area fixed in place. Uh, not quite like a 'joint replacement' surgery, but along the same lines!  I even pin my bones figs if I know they're going to be handled by the boys. :poke:

 

We're always happy to help and we love our hobby, so we want to pull more folks into the fold like evil pervasive black holes! :lol::devil:

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We're always happy to help and we love our hobby, so we want to pull more folks into the fold like evil pervasive black holes! :lol::devil:

I first read that as 'evil perverted black holes...', but perhaps that says more about me than you? ;p

 

I see your :devil: and raise you :devil: :devil: :devil: :devil: ;)

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Ok.  That's a great tutorial, and I'm sure I'll be referencing it in the future.  I don't think I'm going to be able to pin this one, though.  I had already glued him together with JB Weld when I posted the original thread, and it is holding in a fashion worthy of Viking song.

 

That having been said, I guess I'll have to order some green stuff and some more paint for my base color before I can get started.  I probably won't start a WIP thread until I get that in; not much progress to speak of until I can at least get him primed.  In the mean time, I guess I'll just take extra time to clean him up and start wading through sculpting threads.

 

Thanks again, Corporea, for the tutorial, and Baphomet, for the link.  This is definitely the biggest project I've ever attempted, but I've got vision enough to make the Fates jealous, so I'll definitely be doing my homework on this one.

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 Even if you've already glued him it's not too late to pin it...

 

 However the parts are held together, drill down perpendicular to the attached part - for example, on the wings you can drill a hole down through the top of the body, straight through the tab on the wing that fits into the slot on the body, and out through the other side, then slide the pin into the hole - it will prevent the wing from coming off, or even moving at all if you do two pins on each wing.

You can easily put a bit of putty in the hole and shape it to blend in with the rest of the surface details...

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For a big boy such as Gauth, I like to use pinning along with  JB Qwik instead of superglue to put him together.  Once that sets good you never have to worry about a joint breaking ever again.

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Well I was going to give the advice of pin and epoxy then fill with green stuff but you seem to have beat me to the epoxy part. I'm amazed you got the JB weld to hold long enough for the joint to set though. That's patience. If you suspect a weak joint, you can do a drill through pin and then backfill the hole. I haven't done the GaRuth model yet so I can't give you the weak spots. However, greenstuff is still your friend for filling in gaps of all sizes.

 

Good luck and I can't wait to see your progress!

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I actually did manage to drill down through the wing slots, so I got the upper body pinned to the legs, at least.  And my green stuff came in the mail today, so I'm planning to get him filled, sculpted and primed by the weekend.  The JB weld was actually pretty easy.  I only had to hold it for 5ish minutes, and then I leaned him carefully on my lamp for a day.

 

In the mean time, I almost finished my blacksmith today, which isn't as cool, but I've been meaning to paint him for a while so that counts.  ^_^

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