Tuesday, August 30, 2011

What to do when bits are not readily available?

My solution is make your own bits.

Here is the problem at hand. I want to create a Space Wolves army, and I have a very specific 1750 point list in mind. Backbone of my list are two squads of Long Fangs, each squad consisting of a Sargent, and four long fangs with missile launchers.

The problem:

Devastator box has only one missile launcher, and I don't need tactical squads (one missile launcher per box) or sniper scouts (yet another single missile launcher per box).

This means that in order to have eight units with a missile launcher each, I need to buy eight boxes of devastators, which would bring my total to a pretty large crapload of units I don't really need (not to mention the $$ involved in the whole story).

The sollution:

Make your own bits!

I found an amazing tutorial on making silicone molds, and this is my attempt at following methods and techniques mentioned there.

I first took a piece of Plasticine (non-sulfur kind) and laid it flat on a piece of white paper. I approximated the size I will need for all the bits i want to make the mold of. and created a Lego frame to hold it all:

The two little bumps in the corners will create my "pilot holes" for the top part of the mold.

I also sealed the sides of the Lego frame with plasticine, just as shown in the Ultrawerke blog.

Before embedding the parts in plasticine, i sprayed a generous layer of mold release on top, since in my last attempt plasticine got stuck in all nooks and crannies of the piece I wanted to reproduce, and it took me a very long time to clean it all up. Of course, I tested this with a scrap piece, plasticine and mold release before adding all of my nice, important and unique pieces.

Then I mixed a decent amount of silicone rubber (Here I used Smooth On Mold Star 30), and using an old bristle brush, I painted the silicone rubber all over the parts, taking special attention to push rubber in all the little holes and lines. Painting the rubber on helps avoid trapped air bubbles and such.

Once everything was painted, I just poured the rest of the rubber in the Lego frame:

The old and dirty knife was used to trim the plasticine, and the brush in the photo is the bristle brush used for painting the rubber all over the parts.

I will finish this with a disclaimer:

Dear GW, even though I'm duplicating your IP, I'm doing it for my personal use only. The casted pieces will _NEVER_ be sold or given to anyone.

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