Customs: Custom scout size autobots.

Discussion in 'Creative General Discussion' started by erwinsims, Dec 11, 2014.

  1. erwinsims

    erwinsims Well-Known Member

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    Hello everybody, i am prepping myself for some kitbashing,

    I have never done this before, but the scale of the transformers is getting to me.
    I love the DOTM Ironhide and Ratchet and Voyager AOE Optimus but hate ANY bumblebee, sideswipe mudflap etc to stand next to them eighter in vehicle mode or robotmode, they are to bloody big.

    So that has started me thinking.. What would it take to make them myself?

    I would be gratefull for any aditional tips, hints or help.

    in my oppinion it would be needed to:

    1:
    Collect a lot of scout size Transformers, this would be the easy part ( they are getting difficult to find here in Holland)

    2:
    Collect the 1:43 scale alt modes for the cars,most of them ar available as diecast cars and then strip them, make a negative mould and cast it in resin or plastic, or vacuform them with styrine so I could get them in workable material

    3:
    Try and fit a matching body into a alt mode, cut it up and make it stick together
    So that it can transform in a vehicle and have the parts in the good place in robotmode

    4:
    Paint the crap out of them somsofbeaches..


    It is a lot of work but could be fun and I do not back down from a challenge
    But did anyone ever kitbash with a scoutsize?
    What to look out for?

    The other idea would be to scale down deluxes,
    The idea would be to disasemble a deluxe, and scan each part with a 3d scanner, scale it down and print it with a 3d printer.
    But would that work?
    How strong is a 3d printed plastic item?
    Repainting is not a problem, but where in the world can I find a scanner and printer? Is there transparent 3d printed plastic

    Any ideas or help?

    Kind regards, erwin
     
  2. erwinsims

    erwinsims Well-Known Member

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    I have to do an add on, it is possible to scan the Transformers
    So I guess I will do that, it is a bit expensive ( 60 euro just the 3d scan, and then It would have to be printed but I guess it is worth to have them in the proper scale.

    So I will start disasemble a deluxe bee to start with and scale it to the correct size.
    It will be printed in a plastic similar to lego
     
  3. Rexidus

    Rexidus Autobot

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    As someone who also has am interest in creating my own figures I've done some research but haven't actually attempted this stuff.

    I'll start off with the area of knowledge I know the most about. 3D printed stuff. There are companies like Shapeways where users can upload their own designs and buy them through that site, kind of like YouTube. Fakebusker here on the boards is a pretty big manufacturer of Shapeways products but there are a number of people here that do it.

    There are a bunch of different materials Shapeways offers to print stuff in and each has pros and cons. The cheapest is White Strong Flexible. It's strong and cheap. It's also porous and has the lowest resolution. I go with this material when I buy something I'm unsure of but even then it is usually pretty fine in person. I should probably mention at this point that when you look at a 3D printed item in a picture, man does it not photograph well. The camera magnifies every small defect and makes it look far worse than it actually is in person. You can have White Strong Flexible be Polished to make it smoother but you loose a little of the detail doing that. I generally find the trade off worth it as a bit of paint still brings out the detail. Another material Shapeways offers is Frosted Ultra Detail. This material is smooth and very high resolution. It looks amazing. It's the most brittle however so I only use it for pieces that don't need strength like weapons or heads. Now others disagree with me on this next material but I find the best material available to be Polished Alumninide. It has very high detail and is very strong and very smooth. Seriously I once had to cut a bit off a gun I had and I had to work to break it. In ABS plastic that piece would have been no big deal to take off. The downside of Polished Aluminide is that it is one of the more varied materials; meaning that joints might not fit perfectly. All 3d printed things have that problem but PA has probably the worst example of this. I don't mind that as a bit of super glue or floor polish can tighten a loose joint and once fixed the piece looks amazing. There's plenty of other topics about 3d printed stuff on the boards, and I probably answer them in similar fashion.

    Now moving on. A thread you might want to be aware of is this one: http://www.tfw2005.com/boards/transformers-toy-discussion/504731-transformers-scale-project.html
    It collects the scales of various Transformers and makes it easier to find what you'd need to look for scale wise.

    Next up let's mention scratch building. Basically you're right in that you'd need a lot of donor parts to figure everything out. Check out the Radicons tutorials for specifics on how to scratch build. The key is that you just have to get in there and try it to get better. Same with everything in life.
    http://www.tfw2005.com/boards/tutorials-how-tos/201900-table-contents.html#post7127215

    And finally I'll mention a thread I found here that makes me really tempted to spend a lot of money on experimenting. There's a mold making material that can change size. http://www.tfw2005.com/boards/radicons-customs/313774-1-18-scale-conversion-legend-arcee.html
    Basically you can use this stuff to make molds of the parts and scale them either direction and effectively make a copy of a figure at a different scale. I really want to try this stuff out some time.

    So there's the basics of my research into similar topics. Hope I helped.
     
  4. erwinsims

    erwinsims Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for your information, it is really helpfull especially the materials part!
    I am aware of the scale tread and actually posted a picture with my DOE G1 Optimus and deluxe Ironhide (HFTD) and Ratchet (DOTM) both the best versions of that figure in my opinion and now I would love Bumblebee, Sideswipe, twins, and Jazz to be in scale with them.

    The sites you mention would not be happy with these designs, since it is basicly a knock off of a Hasbro toy.

    I have been talking with some people and if I take them apart, and present them scanable (that means mounted) they will scan it in high resolution and can print them to
    And since I will repaint the models so I was thinking of having them printed in just one color.

    That said, 70 euro for the scan and having them printed at 60 euro is quite expensive for just one transformer. Especially since I want to have 5 of them to start with.. Not to mention that I might be tempted to scale down some Decepticons to...

    I might have a go just with Bumblebee, now to decide wich one to go with, the 74,2010, 2012, 69 or 2015 version.. I think the DOTM version is a nice one, but hate the nets in the window. And i love the 69 camaro.. ( still hate that they didn't do a old beetle)
     
  5. Rexidus

    Rexidus Autobot

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    I can't help you there. I hate the movie designs.

    Personally in your situation I would probably take a stab at the size changing mold stuff. But then I'm basically just looking for an excuse to use the stuff I think.
     
  6. erwinsims

    erwinsims Well-Known Member

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    Well from what I can see, the size changing stuff only gives you a chance to scale up, and in my case I need to scale down with them to roughly scout class.

    To be honest i am a bit torn about the bayformers, i love the robotmodes and nice transformations but I have always said that they should have used the G1 cars for them. Especially Optimus and Bee.. We have Optimus in G1 style..
    Maybe I should look into creating a baystyle Bumblebee beetle
     
  7. erwinsims

    erwinsims Well-Known Member

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    Well from what I can see, the size changing stuff only gives you a chance to scale up, and in my case I need to scale down with them to roughly scout class.

    To be honest i am a bit torn about the bayformers, i love the robotmodes and nice transformations but I have always said that they should have used the G1 cars for them. Especially Optimus and Bee.. We have Optimus in G1 style..
    Maybe I should look into creating a baystyle Bumblebee beetle
     
  8. erwinsims

    erwinsims Well-Known Member

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    Good news! I have send Bumblebee to be scanned and as soon as that is done, I will be printing him in the proper scale, I believe the deluxe Ironhide and Ratchet are roughly 1:43 scale, so that will be the scale of the camaro in vehicle mode.

    It will be the DOTM Bumblebee, but without the windownets.
     
  9. Rexidus

    Rexidus Autobot

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    Awesome news. I actually look forward to seeing this because I'm curious how well a scan and print technique would work.
     
  10. sdexam

    sdexam Well-Known Member

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    I want my collection to be 1:43 scale too, please let me know your result, I am interested to purchase the print out Bee if you are willing to print another copy.
     
  11. AlexG

    AlexG Triple Changer

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    If you're looking to do this with several toys and not just one or two, you'd be better off investing in your own 3d scanner. Makerbot, a popular 3d printing company, makes a 3d scanner, the digitizer, that is just perfect for transformer parts and isn't too expensive, in the $800 range, compared to using a 3d scanning service very many times.

    Something you ought to watch out for when re-sizing a transformer is joints. Many pin joints to hold on flaps and other kibble won't be sturdy if made any smaller, so you'll want to go through and edit the scans to make sure all the parts will be reasonably strong after being printed in a smaller scale.

    On the subject of printing the smaller figure, you may be best off using shapeways instead of buying your own printer, at least for some of the more detailed parts. Most readily available 3d printers are FDM type printers which use plastic filament and an extruder to print. these are great for large pieces with large detail, but the resolution of the printer is directly tied to the size of the filament, which ranges from 1.5 mm to 3 mm
    Most of shapeways' printers are SLS printers, which have a significantly higher resolution, usually around 0.5-0.7 mm, because they use layers of fine plastic powder melted together by a laser. The resolution of these printers is usually limited by the laser itself, but will always be higher res than an FDM printer. To try and buy an SLS printer is incredibly expensive, but shapeways isn't too expensive as long as you can keep your parts small and hollow, which hasbro already does for you!

    If you're going to mass produce figures, then you would be best off 3d printing the final model, then casting it and producing resin copies to sell to friends or people here on the boards or wherever. It's more work than just printing every copy, but it will save you a lot of money in the long run.

    good luck!
     
  12. erwinsims

    erwinsims Well-Known Member

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    well to be honnest, 800 euro is quite expensive for me and I wanted to try it out first and see what comes out of it.

    The joints tipn is a good one, ill look into that.
    and I have found a conmpany that has a SLS printer like you said, i wanted the best detail possible.
    I would love to use shapeways, but I do not know if that would be a copyright-issue
    it is a Hasbro toy but just scaled down to 1:43 scale, wich is the correct scale next to deluxe Ironhide and Ratchet and AOE Optimus ( see picture)

    I have never cast items in resin before, that sounds difficult to, maybe I should find some one to do that to?
    I was not planning on mass-producing them, it was for me and my weird scale obsession in the first place.. do you think there is a market for these things?

    [​IMG]


    With the holidays happening now, it might be a while until it is back.

    As soon as it is printed and it looks good, i can not see why I would just print one if someone else wants one to.
     
  13. sdexam

    sdexam Well-Known Member

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    Thanks.
    Not sure do you collect movie figures only, there are some others transformers I will consider around 1/43
    [​IMG]
     
  14. erwinsims

    erwinsims Well-Known Member

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    I agree, the scout size is a good comparison to, I have some duplicates of Dead beat,Hubcap and Dunerunner to see if I can kitabsh them.

    I prefer the movieverse bots cause they look more realistic to me, that said I love the old scool cars to, I am thinking of doing a bumblebee kitbash in scout size but it is quite something to figure out how to make them look right.
    That is why I figured to get a deluxe scaled down by 3d scanning and printing.
     
  15. erwinsims

    erwinsims Well-Known Member

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    Hello everyone,
    The scan of bumblebee is done and it looks good.
    I will have one printed in ABS plastic as soon as possible, but the company where the scan has been made does not have a high resolution printer (yet) so i need to find a company that does.
    And if this looks good enough ill get pictures here asap.

    I can not wait!
     
  16. Rexidus

    Rexidus Autobot

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    This is still an awesome thing that I wish were cheaper because I would totally do it too.
     
  17. erwinsims

    erwinsims Well-Known Member

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    Well if it works and looks good, I do not see why we should just print one of them, I could print more copies, that would make it cheaper I guess..
     
  18. Rexidus

    Rexidus Autobot

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    I wouldn't be buying it unfortunately. I'm not interested in this particular figure but I am interested in the process used in its creation.
     
  19. erwinsims

    erwinsims Well-Known Member

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    Ah well then keep this tread in mind, i am planning to show every step here.