Wednesday, March 9, 2011

tricks of the trade

i've been prepping a new batch of tin soldiers for the last couple of days. it dawned on me that i have definitely learned a thing or two that makes me better at painting/modelling than i used to be. tricks of the trade if you will. in that moment i realized that i should share some of my knowledge with others. so, enjoy!

before i begin i think i should mention that i came across these tidbits in many ways. some i taught myself, some were taught to me, and others i just saw and repeated.

sticking things together - three words: five minute epoxy. Xevious told me about this stuff. it's a little harder to work with but holds so much better than superglue. its great for larger metal models.  things that get bumped and normally would break off and have to be reglued just dont ever break. its a two part glue that needs to be mixed together and i have learned to mix it in small batches. if you try to glue too many different things the glue will start to harden and become no good to work with. also, this stuff does take 5 minutes to hold something in place, so its usually best just to glue one thing at a time to make sure it doesnt go anywhere while it sets. i got mine at the dollar store and it works great.Photobucket

there are other times when i want a really good hold on something but its just too tricky to use the 5 minute epoxy. these are usually things like small based models arms or weapons, things that will stick out and probably get bumped and broken. for these i use a small amount of green stuff and superglue. i put a little bit of glue on both surfaces getting stuck together and put a tiny ball of greenstuff in the middle. this works really well, but if you use too much greenstuff it will squish out the middle.

rubbing off paint- you know when youre painting a model and you end off rubbing paint off with your fingers? or you are trying to paint something at a funny angle and rub paint off with your table? i dont do that anymore. i started using the  sponge pad that comes with a model in a blister pack. i mostly use it to lie my model on while im painting it and that way i can hold it by the base at whatever angle i want and never rub anything off. to me this seems so rudimentary. i feel as though that must be the obvious purpose to putting the sponge in the pack at all and everyone must do this already. so maybe i dont need to point it out, but no one pointed it out to me... so there you go.Photobucket

magnets - man these things are useful! i think that it is very widely known that magnets are a great way to give you options for your models. mr. model has two options for guns? why not slap magnets on his hands and both guns and have the option to swap them out on a whim?
Xevious and i have been using them for another purpose: transportation. stick a magnet under the base of your models, put them in a cookie tin, and you have a great way to haul them around without worrying about breaking or scraping the paint off them. Photobucket Photobucket
my technique goes like this: cut the blister pack up into little squares. mix up your 5 minute epoxy. layer the glue and plastic to a height that the magnet will be flush with the rim of the base when you stick it on. stick the magnet on with epoxy as well. perfecto.

i personally have started doing this before i even stick my models to their bases. this way you dont have to come up with some weird balancing act to make sure the magnet doesnt move before the glue sets. Xevious has told me he doesnt like to do it this way because the magnets mess up will mess up the sand he puts on his bases. i guess there must be iron in his sand, but i dont have any problems.

i guess that will be all for now. i know no one likes reading blog a entry with no pictures, so i'll snap a couple pics and let this update rip.


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