Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Fleet Assembly, Priming and Painting

Thanks to some helpful folks on the web, I got information pretty quickly on how to deal with the yellow resin for these models.
  1. Brushed the loose resin flack off the models, then used a file and very sharp - new - X-acto blade to trim everything.

  2. Soaked the parts in warm water with Palmolive (any grease-cutting soap is good they say) for an hour, then scrubbed them with a soft toothbrush - very gently!

  3. Let dry overnight.

  4. Assembled with standard super-glue, in this case GaleForce Nine Hobby Glue, but any cyanoacrylate like Zap-a-Gap will do. For gaps or loose fits, I used Green Stuff from Games Workshop with no other glue. The parts are light, they held with just the GS.

  5. Primed with my usual hobby primer, this one in a medium grey. However, some of the guys who responded said that cheap-o primer from Wal-Mart works just fine for them at a $1 a can! Must try that!

  6. Did a dark grey wash with some thinned-down dark grey, just regular GW paint.

Painting. For the Nebulon, I'm using three shades of grey for the base coat, one on each ship. I wanted to finish one first and see how it came out. I haven't painted many starships, and needed to see the effect of various painting methods. For this first finished Nebulon, I started with the dark grey wash over the grey primer (the medium and lighter grey are the other two ships). I then painted 'up' in various shades of grey, with the 'outside' parts lighter than the 'inner' parts of the ship.

The ventral fin at the front is actually a rack into which various ship systems can be attached, including things such as the bridge which is located towards the top, and weapons that are towards the bottom. To get the feel of several different 'pods' that were inserted into the ventral rack, I painted the horizontal bits different colors, etc, to give the impression of a variety of sources used to assemble the ship in its present configuration. This is a 'rebel' version captured from the Empire, so it has the Rebel 'red line' and symbol on the upper main superstructure.

To protect it, I used a layer of polyurethane, the water-based MinWax. The mix I used is a bit 'brown' for a natural look, but for the ships I want more of a black/grey wash so I'll make another dip in that tone. I just dipped the ship into the mix and shook off the excess.

At the top, is a picture of the WoC Nebulon B which is a 1/4,000 scale or so, about 7cm long for a 300m+ ship. Above it are the three OS resin ships, one finished and two in their beginning grey. They are "in scale" at 1/10,000. The picture is from V:ESB, a 'real' Nebulon B. I'll leave it to your judgement which you like best!

Personally, I can make a solid argument that a cheap WoC ship that is out of scale but looks cool is a nice alternative to painting, but it is fun to paint them as you want them to look. The cost is about the same, around $4 for either ship. It should be noted that the WoC ship had a large bend in the middle, making it rather 'U' shaped! I had to unbend it and do some re-assembling after. Still, it does the job and it is hard to damage, perfect for conventions!

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