Model Making Tips
You will need:
Main Tools required are a sharp model knife or scalpel, which must be used with extreme care (I have a wound to prove it!) Small Pliers for bending wire parts. Superglue, Epoxy 2 part Glue such as Araldite Rapid. A selection of good paintbrushes. Paints the Andrea & Citadel ranges are ideal.
1. The first step is to make sure that you have all the parts that you need to fully assemble your kit. If anything is missing, contact us straight away and we will send the missing or damaged part.
2. Make sure all the parts are clean and free from mould release agent. I do this by soaking them overnight in a bowl of hot water with a mixture of Cif cream cleanser and washing up liquid. I find that the Cif cleanser very slightly etches the surface of the plastic parts and gives an ideal base on which to paint.
3. Test fit all parts. You may need to clean away some mould flash from some parts with a sharp model scalpel. Smooth down any trimmed areas with Wet and Dry garnet paper.
4. Assemble your kit using Superglue for small parts and epoxy resin glue such as Araldite Rapid for larger parts.
5. You may need to pin large parts on resin kits by drilling a hole into opposing parts and fitting a piece of 3mm wire to brace the area.
6. We can always help you at any stage or if you do not understand any of these instructions.
7. Some parts may leave a gap in between and I fill this gap with Milliput Superfine, which can be mixed with water into a paste and painted into small gap lines. Miliput Superfine is a 2 part Epoxy Putty which sets hard and can be sanded smooth and painted over.
8. When you are happy with the model you can base coat it, some multi part models are easier to paint in separate sections and then glue together when all painting is done.
I base coat most models with a Matt Black aerosol such as Citadel Chaos Black. This gives a good solid base coat to lay up final colours. Painting: A lot of people will adapt different ways of painting, a lot of people use Airbrushes nowadays, I think these are fine for models of spaceships etc. However, on model figures I think that if you look at a character, do they look like they have been spray painted? You get far more subtle results with a paint brush as follows:
Base coat the model, I use Citadels Chaos Acrylic Black, which is good for most materials. If the model has a lot of bright colours like Superman, then I would go for a Grey aerosol base coat.
For flesh areas I work from light to dark, apply a white or cream base acrylic coat to the flesh areas. When dry, apply oil paints, like Burnt Sienna all over the area and then polish off carefully with a soft cloth. You can remove excess oil paint with a Cotton Bud.
All colours applied to resin and vinyl kits must be Acrylic Water Based paints.
What is a Garage kit? Do you fondly remember all the monsters in your favorite Science Fiction and Horror movies? Have you ever longed to build a model of the evil aliens from Invasion of the Saucermen or the creature creations of master animator Ray Harryhausen? Well, thanks to modern molding and casting materials and a group of industrious individuals from all corners of the world, there are kits available of more aliens, monsters and creatures than you may have ever imagined! Garage Kits were essentially resin castings of sculptures created and molded in the garages or basements of talented fans of Science Fiction and Horror films. However, in recent years Garage Kits have gone from being an interesting modeling phenomenon to a full-fledged industry with companies like Killer Kits, MIM, Federation Models, Solarwind, Lunatic Fringe and Geometric producing an astounding array of subjects in resin and vinyl. Today, the term Garage Kit encompasses everything from high-quality kits from large manufacturers to the individually produced, very limited edition resin kits from the guy down the street. Often it will be the individual producer that provides the more obscure and interesting characters.
The challenge and anticipation of crafting that creature that haunted your childhood dreams can become a very exciting hobby. Most kits are not that challenging, but it's best to know everything you might face and be prepared to correct it.
Many garage kits do not come in coloured boxes with nice box art, often there are no instructions and it's up to you to figure out how all the parts go together. So, a bit of knowledge about your subject and some modelling knowledge will come in handy. Many garage kits do not come in coloured boxes with nice box art, often there are no instructions and it's up to you to figure out how all the parts go together. So, a bit of knowledge about your subject and some modelling knowledge will come in handy.
The best way to start your project is with a bath. Using a mild soap and warm water, carefully wash off all parts to eliminate any mould release agent. Handle thin, fragile looking parts with extreme care since the resin can be brittle and break easily. Because of the manual nature of casting garage kits, there can be excessive amounts of flash, but be careful in removing it. Sometimes it can be difficult to distinguish between what is flash and what is intended to be detail. This is where knowledge of your subject will serve you well. The best way to start your project is with a bath. Using a mild soap and warm water, carefully wash off all parts to eliminate any mould release agent. Handle thin, fragile looking parts with extreme care since the resin can be brittle and break easily. Because of the manual nature of casting garage kits, there can be excessive amounts of flash, but be careful in removing it. Sometimes it can be difficult to distinguish between what is flash and what is intended to be detail. This is where knowledge of your subject will serve you well.
Reference materials play an important part in this pre-assembly stage as well. Although most garage kits build up into good representations of their subjects, there are often some details missing. If complete or at least near complete accuracy is important to you, then Movie DVD`s are your best bet as they often have stop motion features to see the close up detail of a given subject.
Assembly Dry fitting parts on a garage kit is essential. Test fitting and shaping are the best way to assure a proper fit. Since most mating surfaces are smooth and without male/female locators, pinning parts together for strength is another important part of assembly. The trick to pinning accurately is finding the center of both parts in order to locate the pins. After you have shaped both mating surfaces so they match up to your satisfaction, draw an "X" on the mating surface of one of the parts. Be sure that the "X" overlaps the mating surface so you can see its outer legs when the parts are placed together. When you place the two parts together, mark the location of the legs on the second part. Now you have reference markings to make a second "X" on the mating surface of the that part. When you drill holes at the center of the two "Xs", the holes should line up with each other. Using super glue, affix a small piece of wire (a piece of paper clip works well here) into one hole. After it is dry and secure, test fit again before finally gluing the part in place.
Of course, super glue is an absolute necessity for assembling any resin kit, but 5 minute epoxy can come in handy for attaching parts that still have gaps even after all the sanding and shaping is done. The epoxy helps to fill the gaps from within and provides a strong joint. Any remaining gaps can be handled with gap filling super glue or model putty. However if the surface you're filling needs detailing to match surrounding areas, Milliput Epoxy Putty becomes indispensable. As the two-part putty sets up, you can detail it and blend the edges into a seamless surface. It is easily worked and smoothed with water and it holds detail well. Once you've assembled your garage kit, you're ready to move on to the most rewarding part of the process, the painting.
PaintingResin kits accept nearly any kind of paint you'd use on a styrene kit; enamels, acrylics, lacquers or oils, or any combination. On the other hand, vinyl kits can be very picky about paint, so stick with the water-based acrylics since enamels and oils will not fully dry on a vinyl surface. Games Workshops Citadel paints are ideal for both resin & vinyl, a base / primer coat is strongly advised, I use an aerosol acrylic type in matt black or matt grey. But not a filler type primer as this will fill in detailing. Once your figure is primed, you can test nearly every painting technique you know. A monster's surface practically cries out for washes, dry brushing, blending and shading or any other tricks you can think of. It's all up to you.
Bases and Dioramas
Although there is a trend toward including bases in garage kits, many kits come as "stand alone" figures. Depending upon how much space you have to display your creations, you may want to create your own base or create a diorama to show off your creature. Bases can range from a simple stained wooden plaque to a landscaped, themed base that reflects your creation's environment. Of course, dioramas for these creatures will let your imagination run wild. If you're ready to take the plunge into the world of garage kits, you are now prepared to take your Science Fiction and Horror dreams and nightmares and build them into a reality.