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Maledrakh

Rescuing Droopy the Dragon (Bones 4 Gauth) *updated March 2020*

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One of the least appealing qualities of the Bones PVC material is the lack of structural strength in some models. This has been most apparent in top-heavy minis, such as some of the Dragons and a few of the early monsters like the Swamp Troll king and Bone Devil.

Usually they go together well and stand up ok for a while. But over time...they tend to droop.

Enter Gauth. One of the last old-style metal dragons that has been converted into Bones. Gauth is a part of the Bones 4 kickstarter Core set. The core set minis are made in the classic bones material and not in the new and more rigid Bones Black. I believe that if Gauth had been a Bones Black mini, this might not have been an issue (or at least, it would have been a good test of the material).

 

gauth.jpg?w=199 This is a screencap from the Bones 4 preview video. This shows what Gauth is supposed to look like.

When I built mine, it also stood high and proud like this.

 

However...it began to droop, eventually the muzzle touched the ground. So I fixed the tail to the base to create a counterpull. (Adding a third point of contact to the base has worked wonders with several other of my drooping dragons. This pulled the muzzle up from the ground a couple of cms. Sadly, I don't have pictures of the cowtow, as this was some time ago and did not think to take any photos at the time.

 

But then the wings also were wonky, and got worse as time went by.

1911-droopy-3a.jpg?w=300

1911-droopy-4.jpg?w=300

1911-droopy-3.jpg?w=300

Gah! Do Not Want! Sad now!

 

So how to rescue this Dragon from the Bins of Despair?

Using the hot water trick to repositon the bits will only fix it for a limited time, as gravity inevitably will pull the bits back into it's clingy embrace. The whole problems is the lack of stiffness in the material that cannot withstand gravity.

 

So how to add strength?

One way would be to give it a literal skeleton by drilling longs holes lengthwise though the legs and wings and inserting long metal rods to stiffen them.

I have successfully drilled out legs in this manner and added rods on smaller models, which has worked fine to stiffen that part, and have stayed straight over time.. But this method is really not feasible on this model as drillbits in 1mm or so do not come in the kind of lengths that would be needed, and the bits would probably just snap as soon as you can look at them anyway.

I have heard talk about using heated wire and shoving that in there, but have had rather limited success with that method when I earlier have tried doing that.

So any stiffening would have to be external on this model. However, I don't think multiple splints would look very good.

Anyhow, there are at least two issues that will need addressing here:

1) is the whole cowtow business with the droop of the body and the muzzle going down.

2) is the wings fanning out and becoming umbrellas.

These will need seperate solutions.

 

Enter Clippy  giphy.gifthe sacrificial victim to the Gods of Strength!

Clippy must die so that others may live. His sacrifice will be remembered as the only good that came out of his annoying existence. (What were microsoft thinking when they introduced this irritant?)

After murdering that irksome Clippy, the corpse is to be dismembered and used for something more rewarding.

 

1911-droopy-leg1.jpg?w=300 A simple bracing strut from the base to the right knee seems to have done the trick. You can see the tail tether in the close up.

It is drilled and pinned (albeit a very short pin) and I have used some plastic putty with superglue to give the join some body and strength.

1911-droopy-leg.jpg?w=275

Time will tell if this, together with the tail tether is enough to keep Gauth standing tall. This is just a test anyhow and the rod is not glued nor fastened in any way exept it is held quite firmly in place by the pressure of Gauth bearing down on it.

 

1911-droopy-leg2.jpg?w=300

And the wings very handily straightened out when held together. Again, this is a test. I will be trying different ways to get them to hold in this position if they pass the test of time.

 

Success!

1911-droopy-6.jpg?w=213 1911-droopy-5.jpg?w=230

So that is three things done here.

  1. the tail is fastened to the base.
  2. a strut has been put between the right knee and the base.
  3. the wings have been held together at the top claws.

So far so good. Hopefully Gauth will hold in this position indefinately. We will see in a few days' time if other action is needed.

Edited by Maledrakh
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Most large Bonesium minis can use thicker than 1mm bracing.

 

My 2.5mm drill bits are 120mm long, but I have seen 150mm long 2mm drill bits. 

Combine that with brass or copper tubing and you should be all set. 

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Interesting, I embraced the sagging wings and left them in the down position. Also makes it easier to store, height wise. I think no mater what you do the tail needs to be pinned or Gauth will bend forward like he is grazing. The tail pin was sufficient to prevent major  forward bending, the knee brace is not required I think.

 

The wings down gives him a kind of swooping in look, see image.

 

IMG_20190716_160443358.jpg

What I did, however, was to raise the legs with two sheets of cork tiling (approximative total of 1cm), so the tail pin, via the raised leg levers, raises the head up a bit more.

Edited by MoebiusStrip
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3 hours ago, MoebiusStrip said:

Interesting, I embraced the sagging wings and left them in the down position.  ... The wings down gives him a kind of swooping in look ...

 

My very thought.  Well done.

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Update!

 200329-reaper-bones-4-core-set-7-gauth-dragon-conan.jpg

He has now been standing tall since November. I keep the wings together with a small loop of florist's wire around the horn/claw/thumb things on the wings, in the middle there. WIth the knee-brace he stays up. Without the brace he kinda slumps, even with the tail fixed to the base. So I kept the knee-brace. 

 

I painted him yesterday.

 

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