Heavy/Scratch: WIP: OS KO Arcee to Masterpiece Arcee

Discussion in 'Radicons Customs' started by Snaku, Apr 16, 2017.

  1. Snaku

    Snaku Well-Known Member

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    Ok, I guess I spoke too soon saying that I'd have to wait til tomorrow to finish installing the ball. The apoxie isn't fully cured but it was hard enough that I could carefully assemble her and position the balljoint to be attached to her lower torso. So here it is:

    ArceeBallJoint.jpg

    It doesn't look like much right now but by the time I get off work tomorrow, it should be hard enough that I can dissasemble her and work on sculpting the midtorso onto the upper side's balljoint.

    What I haven't figured out yet is how I'm going to assemble her when this is done. I had to cut off the upper screw on her crotch piece leaving only the one in her lower butt. That's just not going to be strong enough. I'll need to figure out a place to put a new screw hole (I can't just glue it because it would trap moving parts and I need them separate for painting when all the building is done. The problem is there's not much of her crotch piece left so it's going to be challenging installing a new screw hole. I'm sure I'll figure something out though.

    Btw, you can see that I've filled the gun ports on her "wings." I have no interest in plugging weapons there and the holes are unsightly so they get filled in. I've sanded the one on the left down to where it's level and should be invisible when painted. Tomorrow I'll sand the other one. I'll also sand and smooth the inner chest where I've filled it with apoxie. Not strictly necessary since it'll be covered in robot mode but I'm'a try to keep this thing looking as professional as possible.

    I'm excited! Despite a few minor bumps in the road, this is going very well and I should be able to accomplish most of my goals for her. The ball joint was the second most difficult part and it's done. The most difficult part is going to be sculpting the new belly. I'm optimistic that it will go well too. Wish me luck.

    Also, does anybody have any idea on how to remove her rear wheels from the split mushroom pegs they're on? I've tried squeezing them with pliers so the wheels can slip over but there's not enough area to grip and the pliers end up slipping and scratching the surface. I'd like to paint her rims and that would work better if the wheels were off.
     
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  2. SHADDO

    SHADDO Arashikage Decepticon

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    Use a hairdryer, set on high, for 30-60 seconds. That will soften the plastic JUST ENOUGH so that you can more easily squeeze the split mushroom peg together and pop the wheel right off, no problem.

    Do the same thing to the peg before popping the wheel back on, so it goes back on with less rub. Then stick one of your tools back between the pegs after popping the wheel on, while the plastic is still relaxed, and hold it there for several seconds, separating the peg back out as the plastic finishes cooling down. That will help keep its proper shape and tightness, without risk of popping off randomly.

    The hairdryer method is perfectly safe, and much better than sticking the plastic in boiling water, as boiling water will make the plastic more brittle, while the hairdryer simply softens without the chemical reaction of the plastic vs. boiling water. This is also effective for assembly/disassembly of virtually any plastic figure, where you have no pins, such as ball joints, split mushroom pegs, regular mushroom pegs, etc., or other tight fitting parts that could cause breakages or stress marks.

    Also highly effective with placing decals, particularly from Reprolabels/Toyhax, so that they conform to curvature and textured areas properly. For this purpose, DO NOT HEAT MORE THAN 10 SECONDS at a time or you risk melting/bubbling up the decals! Then take a plastic toothpick, or something similarly effective, to run across the decal, in order to smooth it out and get the corners and edges down.

    Hope this is helpful! Looking forward to seeing your progress and the finished piece!
     
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  3. Snaku

    Snaku Well-Known Member

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    Thank you! I'll definitely give that a try.

    More updates. I've had to rip out and rebuild the top and bottom ball joints now. Top twice and bottom once. Sooner or later I'll get it right. Right now it's curing once again but I managed to get her partially assembled so I could snap a few photos.

    ArceeBallJoint3.jpg ArceeBallJoint1.jpg

    Kind of a goofy pose (she's only partially assembled with only a couple screws and no pins so getting her standing at all was tricky), but it showcases the balljoint and her new posability. I didn't mean to have her neck/collar out of joint but by the time I noticed it, she was already precariously balanced and I didn't want to try to set her up again.

    I've also sanded down her shoulders: I didn't like how big they were and, if I wanna' give her cap sleeves, they'll need to be smaller anyway. I'd like to bring them in a little closer to her body too to give her a more feminine shape. I'm not thrilled about cutting and gluing her arm posts though: just feels like no matter what I do they won't be as strong after that.
     
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  4. SHADDO

    SHADDO Arashikage Decepticon

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    Anytime! Hopefully that trick will be very useful here, but also later on. Let me know how it goes, and keep up the good work! She's turning out quite nicely!
     
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  5. primalxconvoy

    primalxconvoy グーグル 翻訳は素晴らしいです!

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    Great job so far.
     
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  6. Snaku

    Snaku Well-Known Member

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    Minor update today. I wasn't able to do much more than reinforce the balljoint connections and begin to install the inner portion of her waist, which is a sheet of thin styrene wrapped around the ball socket and packed with apoxie sculpt to solidify it. When it's finished (the inner waist, that is), I'll coat it with XTC-3D which is an epoxy resin meant to fill in the striations in 3d prints but it should do fine to make a harder surface over the styrene. I'm waiting for the apoxie I added to both parts of the waist to cure so tomorrow I should be able to begin construction on the lower part of the waist which will complete her silhouette and get rid of the Raziel look she's got going right now.

    I've figured out how I'm going to assemble her torso. I'll add a screw hole into the bottom of the balljoint piece (really it'll be into the apoxie that's anchoring it) so that the crotch piece can be screwed into it. Then I'll make the lower waist portion install from the top down, either with screws or with magnets. Then the ball can go down inside it to make the final connection. That way I don't have to choose between depending on one screw to hold the crotch together or gluing it together with the legs trapped forever.

    Here's a shot I took before I disassembled her again to add the reinforcements. Not much new in the image since yesterday but it shows the posability again. Pictures like this will serve to keep me going if I start to lose steam: I just can't get over how much I love the added dynamic the waist and hands give her.

    ArceeWaistWIP2.jpg


    And here's the 3D design for the feet. I'm gonna' finish these up and take them to my buddy tomorrow for 3D printing. The ankle should fit into Arcee's legs where her existing feet are and it will allow ankle and toe posability. I've also put a 4mm hole into the heel into which an optional stiletto piece can be plugged. This way I can display her flat footed like G1 or with heels like some of her more recent interpretations.

    ArceeFoot1.JPG ArceeFoot2.JPG ArceeFoot3.JPG

    Once I've got the printed feet and I test and confirm that they work, I'll upload them to Shapeways and Thingiverse for anybody who wants them. They'll require one 1mm pin and one 2mm each to assemble.
     
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  7. GAUGE

    GAUGE In Art, Nothing Is Impossible.

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    I hope you fix her ugly face too.
     
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  8. Snaku

    Snaku Well-Known Member

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    It's on my to do list but it's not at the top. I've done a couple of test sculpts but they haven't gone well so I'm thinking it's off to shapeways. I've only done a little bit of 3d modeling but I'm pretty sure I can make a good face/head for her.
     
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  9. wwoptimusprime

    wwoptimusprime Till all are one

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    Just got mine in the mail today. She's awsome as is but, deffinetly want to try some of your mods. :) 
     
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  10. Snaku

    Snaku Well-Known Member

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    Best of luck to you! The hip mod is fairly straightforward but some of the others are pretty challenging. I've been working on waist for.. what.. four or five days now? It's coming along but it's coming slowly.

    So not much new to report today. I tested her in alt mode again after all the detaching and reattaching I've had to do for the balljoint parts. It's very tight but she can still get into alt mode as long as I crank the balljoint as far back as it can go. If I had it to do again, I'd probably go a little further to make sure the ball joint doesn't extend her waist too much. I'd also slide her upper torso back a little on its part of the waist: set it so the front of the waist is directly under the front grill part of her car hood instead of behind it.

    I've started building the lower part of her waist. No pics because right now it's just some styrene covered in blue painter's tape and a bit of apoxie sculpt clay. I haven't quite figured out how it's going to anchor. I mean I know I want it to either screw in or use magnets; I'm just not sure where the screws/magnets will anchor.

    As for the articulated Gundam hands, I'm not sure I can really recommend them. They're very cool in theory but the fingers pop off way too easily and I'm sure it's only a matter of time before I start losing them. I tried doing the superglue mod to thicken up the joints but that made it worse. I guess, since the joint is a 'C' shape that goes around a horizontal pin, thickening them with superglue made it so the 'C' doesn't wrap as far around the pin as it's supposed to. I'll try a few more things: hopefully I can get them to behave themselves.
     
  11. TigerBlade

    TigerBlade Prepare for extermination

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    Awesome work so far! Keeping an eye on those feet :) 
     
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  12. OMEGAPRIME1983

    OMEGAPRIME1983 Well-Known Member

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    I very much enjoy where this is going.
     
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