Customs: Paint removal from a Classics Starscream?

Discussion in 'Creative General Discussion' started by Delta Star, Dec 13, 2006.

  1. Delta Star

    Delta Star <b>Reprolabels.com</b> TFW2005 Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2002
    Posts:
    758
    News Credits:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Likes:
    +3
    Okay, this is serious.

    I am trying to put together an instruction page for how to remove the paint from a Classics Starscream.

    *I've* managed to remove the paint, but the way I did it could not have been the best way. I tried using alcohol and then had to dig out the paint with a needle from all those grooves. It took days, and I'm still not really happy with the results.

    So my question is this: What can I tell people who visit my site to help them with this? Is there a trick I'm missing? I've tried soaking, etc...

    I would LOVE to hear from someone who has already done this to a Classics Screamer. Like this: http://reprolabels.com/Temp/CSS.jpg
     
  2. MECHADOOM

    MECHADOOM I'm Doombot and I know it

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2004
    Posts:
    1,728
    Trophy Points:
    177
    Likes:
    +2
    whenever I have to remove paint from a Transformer, I would usually use Testors paint thinner on a Q-Tip, and just keep rubbing until the paint loosens up. That way, I'm not immersing the whole part in the thinner, which keeps the chances of part dammage low. I haven't done this yet with Classics Starscream, but have been VERY succesful with WST paint removal, and this is what I plan to do with 'Screamer when I've got time.
     
  3. Boggs6ft7

    Boggs6ft7 TFW2005 Supporter

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    Posts:
    2,399
    Trophy Points:
    216
    Likes:
    +0
    Here is what I do:

    I get a jar that is big enough to hold all my parts. I pour in Isopropyl Alcohol, the 91% red bottle, in the jar and then throw in my parts making sure everything is covered. I let that soak for a while, sometimes its an hour or so or I might leave it over night, either way no damage is done to the plastic. When I pull the parts out, I take a toothbrush and use it to brush away the paint, occaisionally dipping it back into the alcohol to wash it off and back to scrubbing off the paint.

    You will find that most of the paint immediately peels off once you pull it out, some of the other parts can be more stubborn, but that is why you have the toothbrush.

    Here are pics of my starscream:
    http://www.transformersclassics.com/gallery/Customs-Decepticons-Classics-Starscream2

    If you are looking for a way for people do take the paint off without disassembling him, a rag soaking in alcohol can work, but it takes longer.
     
  4. Knormal

    Knormal Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2004
    Posts:
    120
    Trophy Points:
    96
    Likes:
    +0
    I had to end up combining two Starscreams when I made my G1 repaint, there seems to be some variation in now resilient the paint is, and in some cases the paint seems to actually dye the plastic slightly.

    On the first Starscream I tried, the red paint came right off the left wing with just a cotton ball, q-tip, and 70% isopropyl alcohol, but I couldn't get all the paint off the right wing no matter how much I scrubbed. I had the same problem with the blue paint behind the cockpit. I finally tried letting the parts soak in the alcohol overnight but that only made things worse, the paint ran throughout the cracks and actually dyed the plastic a kind of cloudy red or blue.

    The second Starscream I tried, the red on the right wing and the blue behind the cockpit both came right off like the left wing on the first figure had. When I stripped the paint off the shoulders, I found on one of them even though I hadn't soaked that piece in alcohol the plastic under the paint had been slightly died red. Luckily the same shoulder on the first Starscream didn't have that problem, so I was able to use it.

    Here's some reference pics, just to prove that I actually did it :) 

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Night Flame

    Night Flame TFW2005 Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Posts:
    4,884
    Trophy Points:
    232
    Likes:
    +5
    Though I haven't done it to Starscream yet, I've done it to other toys. A good long soak in something that won't harm the plastic. In my case I use Castrol Super Clean. Unless I'm out, then I use Isopropyl Alcohol and soak it a little longer. If the paint won't easily rub off after a twenty-four hour soak in either though? Prime and paint.

    Then again, I'm not a big fan of raw plastic to begin with, so removing paint is just the first step to putting on good paint for me. But in most cases it strips the plastic down to the raw surface.
     
  6. planetjacker

    planetjacker Critters burn real good. TFW2005 Supporter

    Joined:
    May 6, 2004
    Posts:
    3,649
    News Credits:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    216
    Likes:
    +2
    I used the soak in alcohol and toothbrush method. I brushed the part while under the alcohol to keep any loose paint from drying in place. It worked well for me.

    Man I need to get back to finishing my guy up.
     
  7. fschuler

    fschuler Member TFW2005 Supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2005
    Posts:
    2,202
    Trophy Points:
    216
    Likes:
    +0
    Denatured alcohol (methanol) usually works more quickly than isopropyl alcohol, and it still won't harm the plastic. I recommend cotton balls/Q-tips and denatured alcohol. You can get this stuff at Lowe's, Home Depot, and maybe Walmart.
     
  8. Somebody

    Somebody ReBoot

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Posts:
    307
    News Credits:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    111
    Likes:
    +1
    Isn't methanol kind of toxic?
     
  9. Ops_was_a_truck

    Ops_was_a_truck JOOOLIE ANDREWWWWWS!!!!!!

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2005
    Posts:
    11,549
    Trophy Points:
    236
    Likes:
    +0
    Ebay:
    Yeah, Boggs and the other folks have got it. Get some 91% Isoprophyl Alcohol and let him soak for a day.
     
  10. Boggs6ft7

    Boggs6ft7 TFW2005 Supporter

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    Posts:
    2,399
    Trophy Points:
    216
    Likes:
    +0
    The thing I don't like about methanol is that it evaporated too quickly. So when you pull a part and and take the toothbrush to it, it tends to dry up.

    Maybe it was just the paint on the classics, but I thought the iso alcohol worked better than the methanol.
     
  11. Delta Star

    Delta Star <b>Reprolabels.com</b> TFW2005 Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2002
    Posts:
    758
    News Credits:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Likes:
    +3
    Well, I do appreciate all the help, but it seems too tricky.

    While I was able to prove that it's possible (among other people), I noticed there are way too many chances to ruin the whole toy. One of the many chemicals I tried made parts of my SS crumble to bits. Don't know which, but now I'm reluctant to recommend any of them to customers.

    So I went and got another Starscream and hit the drawing board again. I came up with this. It's an add-on set that covers up the red painted areas. Works like a charm, and even fixes the problem he has with the wings not matching the body.

    This won't drive up the price of the Classics SS set at all, because there is no printing required. It's just a straight die-cut from matching grey material.

    [​IMG]

    Edit:

    Naked Classics Starscream, using nothing but the cover-up stickers. Have yet to apply the G1 homage stickers:

    [​IMG]
     
  12. fschuler

    fschuler Member TFW2005 Supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2005
    Posts:
    2,202
    Trophy Points:
    216
    Likes:
    +0
    yup...drink it and you can go blind...or worse. Lots of stuff is bad for you.
     
  13. fschuler

    fschuler Member TFW2005 Supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2005
    Posts:
    2,202
    Trophy Points:
    216
    Likes:
    +0
    I agree, it does evaporate quickly. That's why I use cotton balls, since they hold enough of the solvent to make some progress before it all dries up.
     
  14. Insane Galvatron

    Insane Galvatron is not insane. Really!

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2002
    Posts:
    15,609
    News Credits:
    8
    Trophy Points:
    292
    Likes:
    +37
    You should try Simple Green. Just pour some into a dish, soak the parts for a couple hours, then rub the paint right off. A toothbrush will get it out of the cracks. No bad effects to my knowledge yet.
     
  15. Boggs6ft7

    Boggs6ft7 TFW2005 Supporter

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    Posts:
    2,399
    Trophy Points:
    216
    Likes:
    +0
    That would be an easy fix but from the picture it doesn't look like the gray matches up. Plus, it looks like you would lose some of the panel line detail if you put a sticker over it.

    I think popping the wings off and cleaning with alcohol would be easier. Non-toxic and something anyone could do. The rest of the body could be cleaned farily quickly with alcohol as well.

    my 2 cents
     

Share This Page