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Tools of the Trade (Update 1/5/19... Post #35)

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1 Tools of the Trade (Update 1/5/19... Post #35) on Thu Dec 20, 2018 12:51 am

Tools of the Trade?


As a novice, I would like to ask you veterans: what are some of the requisite tools that one might need to be considered well-equipped for these endeavors?  

(I am reserved to the seamless figures - so my question rather regards those in particular.)  


Already recognized is the need for a Dremel, and I happened to have one at hand, fortunately...    

Most recently, I purchased a tube of benzoyl peroxide for stain treatments; it certainly seems to serve its purpose - if so in some eventuality…  


So what other essentials would be worth adding to the tool shed?


I appreciate any and all advice, sincerely, and many thanks in advance!  


N


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GubernatorFan

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Hair dryer for heating = softening hard plastic hands or (if needed) heads and feet.
X-acto knife for slicing off necks from heads that come with them sculpted on.
Silicon finishing powder to protect the silicone rubbery flesh/skin.


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1. Dremel. Can't go half an hour without using it for something.
2. Small bench-sander/grinding-stone
3. Glues. Adhesives for attaching various combinations of wood/metal/plastic/leather/cloth.
4. Scalpel blade.
4. Ear protection. My hearing has been badly damaged from using power tools without protection. These days I use noise-cancelling earphones and listen to audio books while working.


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Stryker2011

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Tweezers
Forceps
Jewelers screw driver set
Sewing needles and thread
a Dremel
needle-nose pliers
Magnifying glass (preferably one with a stand and light)
Different types of glue and epoxies (crazy glue, fabric glue, etc.)
blu-tac
Distilled vinegar (for soaking clothing —particularly anything black or red; but I soak everything)


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Oh, fun question!  All agreed so far.  I'll try to just list a few not mentioned:

Jewel's saw - You can get some cleaner, finer cuts with it, and can really get in to some areas.

Styrogoo Foam adhesive - For working with insulation foam backgrounds.  Took me forever until I found this, and it's the only glue that really works with insulation foam.  https://hotwirefoamfactory.com/-028SG--StyroGoo-.html

Zap-A-Gap - Has a lot of uses, and works on a lot of stuff stuff crazy glue doesn't.  Feel like I discovered this late too.

Contact Cement - My other go to adhesive.  Fast drying, high tack, and the perfect thing for wigging a head.  

Instamorph - Meltable plastic beads.  I use it to fill in areas, especially if there's too much room in a head, and I need to fill in around a socket.

Cuticle scissors - super sharp, and good to get into tiny areas.

Reverse action tweezers - I felt like an idiot for doing things so long without these.  They improved my life immensely.  

Set of small files - Obvious, but a must have.

I'll have to look at my tools when I'm in front of them, and see if I have any other secret tricks.

I also suggest checking out Micromark.com . Tons of amazing tools for modeling. I've struggled with projects only to find tools on that site that simply do what I was trying to do effortlessly.

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All above and:
Hand drills, small medium, large
acrylic paint
Sharpie markers
glue gun
as many screw drivers as you can find
vicegrips
a vice
foam sanding pads of many grit levels
clamps, lots of clamps!
sponge for painting with
000 Italeri real hair brushes
silicone oil especially for seamless bodies
digital calipers
soldering iron
Tupperware for parts storage
good compartmentalised tool box
cotton buds
acetone free nail polish remover
clear nail polish
airbrush...

It's a never ending list mate, you'll pick stuff up as you start to need it Wink

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Guv, a hairdryer, specifically?  Proof that nothing can be quite accurately presumed; one would likely think that everyone has one, however, I do not own one of my own.  I do have a heat gun, which I’ve used to soften neck sockets - but it’s a tricky bit of business because there is no means of adjusting the setting - and it’s immediately hell hot.  I suppose that a hairdryer would be definitely more practical, especially for Hands.  I have used hot water to soften plastic, also - but your recommendation seems altogether simpler.  Duly noted, and many thanks!


Shazz, “power tools?”  I don’t plan to jackhammer anything, LOL, but I do hear your point…  I used to stand sandwiched between crowds of screaming fans and the massive concert amps of rock bands; decibels, indeed, I understand…  Feel fortunate that you can still hear those audio books. Thank you for the solid suggestions.


Stryker, seriously, vinegar?  I have tried and tried without avail to reduce staining by pre-washing my material.  Despite the all-out olfactory assault that vinegar poses, that’s been perhaps the missing ingredient.  Can you attest to it?  Detergent alone is certainly ineffective.  Thank you, sincerely.


Spooks, that’s a lot - much of which has never crossed my mind because I did not know that it existed, such as the various alternative adhesives that you’d mentioned.  Also, those beads would be useful for a plethora of details, I might imagine.  I would appreciate you being perhaps a bit more specific as to what you mean by “Contact Cement,” though.  Cuticle scissors?  Indeed.


Stryker and Spooks, jeweler’s tools?  Most excellent.  


Chop, that’s just it; I’d asked because I have noticed that, with this art, the progress seems rather slow-going.  One will place multiple orders for specific items that will essentially be components of a singular project, and then one waits - not uncommonly for a month or more for some of those items to arrive from overseas - and when they do, only then does one discover the need for some certain tool or specific material in order to effectively repair, alter, modify, or simply utilize the goods.  To not have products for the resolution available at hand?  Ugh!  So in the interest of preparation, then, I’d say it’s much preferable to keep a stocked store with some of the fundamental necessities required for the actual crafting and maintenance aspects.  That’s the idea, anyway…  Your list: clamps, calipers?  Absolutely…  Soldering iron?  Nail polish and remover?  Please explain the potential use for those…  Thank you for adding your own maniacal instruments of total devastation to this continuing catalog.  


Ah, truly, nothing's ever quite as obvious as it may seem…


Many thanks again for all your generous recommendations so far, gentlemen.  I’ll surely be referencing these particulars while making out my list for Santa…


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Stryker2011

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A hairdryer is a must.

Yes, distilled vinegar. Dilute it with water for the first soak. The second soak should be with soapy water to get rid of the vinegar as much as possible, and then a good rinse.


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Yes, I didn't own a hairdryer either, but now I do for working with sixth-scale plastic stuff.

My list was shorter because I was focusing on the bodies and heads/hands/feet that attach to them; many of the other suggestions you got encompassed various additional aspects of working in this scale.

I should also list foamies, which can be used for a variety of pertinent purposes but I most frequently bring them up as material to stuff into a head opening if you cannot or would not use an inside neck connector.


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My "tools of the trade"? I'm simple, I just use a table saw and some RTV...

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powerenergy wrote:Chop, that’s just it; I’d asked because I have noticed that, with this art, the progress seems rather slow-going. One will place multiple orders for specific items that will essentially be components of a singular project, and then one waits - not uncommonly for a month or more for some of those items to arrive from overseas - and when they do, only then does one discover the need for some certain tool or specific material in order to effectively repair, alter, modify, or simply utilize the goods. To not have products for the resolution available at hand? Ugh! So in the interest of preparation, then, I’d say it’s much preferable to keep a stocked store with some of the fundamental necessities required for the actual crafting and maintenance aspects. That’s the idea, anyway… Your list: clamps, calipers? Absolutely… Soldering iron? Nail polish and remover? Please explain the potential use for those… Thank you for adding your own maniacal instruments of total devastation to this continuing catalog.

Sure grab the basics beforehand but the more 'job specific' stuff can wait until you need it, I just don't like to see people blowing wads of cash at the beginning of a hobby that may not pan out in the end. I've been dong this on and off for decades and I'm a motorcycle mechanic with a degree in product design so I had loads of tools anyway. The soldering iron is for any electrics you might want to incorporate such as LEDs, sound chips, motors etc.. and it's useful for sculpting plastic (wear a respirator not just a dust mask, you can add those to the list too). The acetone free nail polish remover is great for stripping paint on plastics without melting them like regular acetone does.

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PureEnergy wrote:Stryker, seriously, vinegar?  I have tried and tried without avail to reduce staining by pre-washing my material.  Despite the all-out olfactory assault that vinegar poses, that’s been perhaps the missing ingredient.  Can you attest to it?  Detergent alone is certainly ineffective.  Thank you, sincerely.


Spooks, that’s a lot - much of which has never crossed my mind because I did not know that it existed, such as the various alternative adhesives that you’d mentioned.  Also, those beads would be useful for a plethora of details, I might imagine.  I would appreciate you being perhaps a bit more specific as to what you mean by “Contact Cement,” though.  Cuticle scissors?  Indeed.


Stryker and Spooks, jeweler’s tools?  Most excellent.  

Yeah, I can attest that vinegar definitely helps to set the dye.  Pleather and vinyl may just be hopeless, but with other materials, it's usually that the manufacturer didn't set the dyes properly.  The other way to go is use some soda ash, which you can get here: https://www.dharmatrading.com/chemicals/soda-ash-fixer.html

Contact cement is a lot of fun.  You can get at any Lowes or Home Depot, and it's a really gooey adhesive. It's intended to put on both surfaces, let dry for a minute or 2 until it's just tacky, and then press together.  Instant strong bond.  But because it's thick and dries quick (not fully cured, but dry enough to work with) it just grabs and sets up differently than a lot of other adhesives. It's great for stuff like adding hair, since it grabs on to the material quickly, so when you're working in layers, it lets you keep going without waiting long for previous layers to dry, or for it to be strong enough to hold.  (I keep thinking about doing a tutorial on wigging a head, since it's so helpful a skill, and I've been asked about it) But play with it a bit and you'll get a sense for how it will be helpful over other adhesives for certain projects.  It's also caustic as hell, so wear rubber glove.  Sometimes I don't and it beats up my finger tips pretty badly.



shovelchop81 wrote:
powerenergy wrote:Chop, that’s just it; I’d asked because I have noticed that, with this art, the progress seems rather slow-going.  One will place multiple orders for specific items that will essentially be components of a singular project, and then one waits - not uncommonly for a month or more for some of those items to arrive from overseas - and when they do, only then does one discover the need for some certain tool or specific material in order to effectively repair, alter, modify, or simply utilize the goods.  To not have products for the resolution available at hand?  Ugh!  So in the interest of preparation, then, I’d say it’s much preferable to keep a stocked store with some of the fundamental necessities required for the actual crafting and maintenance aspects.  That’s the idea, anyway…  Your list: clamps, calipers?  Absolutely…  Soldering iron?  Nail polish and remover?  Please explain the potential use for those…  Thank you for adding your own maniacal instruments of total devastation to this continuing catalog.  

Sure grab the basics beforehand but the more 'job specific' stuff can wait until you need it, I just don't like to see people blowing wads of cash at the beginning of a hobby that may not pan out in the end. I've been dong this on and off for decades and I'm a motorcycle mechanic with a degree in product design so I had loads of tools anyway. The soldering iron is for any electrics you might want to incorporate such as LEDs, sound chips, motors etc.. and it's useful for sculpting plastic (wear a respirator not just a dust mask, you can add those to the list too). The acetone free nail polish remover is great for stripping paint on plastics without melting them like regular acetone does.

PureEnergy, I totally get where you're coming from.  It sucks when you've got momentum on a project, and you have to put it aside while you wait for the right tools or materials to arrive.  Chop is totally right in that it's hard to encourage someone to shell out all at once for all the tools you've accrued over the years, since everyone decides to pursue different avenues of customization, and will sometimes will go really hard at certain things (say painting) and never bother with others (like casting).  But it really is great when someone lets you in on something they've stumbled on, that you may not discover on your own.  I can't even remember all the times I've discovered some new tool or material, and thought back on all the times I'd done something the hard way previously. Or mentioned something offhand that saves you from a disaster on your own project (Chop's acetone vs acetone free nail polish remover above is a great example). I have learned so much over the years from the collective knowledge of this forum, as well as previous boards (and still feel like a novice at this).  It's that kind of sharing of information along with a shared passion for this hobby that really makes this community what it is.

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Handy tip: I use a lot of tiny rhinestones in my science gizmos and they are real finnicky. If you get a short length of dried spaghetti and wet the end, it becomes tacky. The perfect tool for picking up rhinestones.


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shazzdan wrote:Handy tip: I use a lot of tiny rhinestones in my science gizmos and they are real finnicky. If you get a short length of dried spaghetti and wet the end, it becomes tacky. The perfect tool for picking up rhinestones.

Now that's a whacky but ingenious solution! I end up dropping a good 20% of my rhinestones on the carpet... they glint at me mocking me in the night under my lights!

PE: Something else you'll want to look at if you ever decide to do casting, is Vinamold. It's reusable mould making rubber like material that can be melted in your microwave to pour, cool and harden into a silicone like mould. Then when no longer needed it can be cut up and remelted to use again indefinitely or until you inadvertently over cook it which turns it into a fascinating ever expanding, stinking, bubbling monster that you have to rush outside with and watch it morph into an alien landscape! Which incidently is exactly what I used it for with some custom Star Wars builds and a medieval battle ground dio too when I made that mistake! Laughing

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Vinamold-Red-Hot-Pour-Reusable-Mould-Making-Rubber-1kg-Used-plaster-etc-/262005385275

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Guv, you didn’t own a hairdryer, either?  I rather pictured you under the type affixed upon a salon chair.  LOL.  So no Fabio locks underneath that helmet, then?  No cornrows?  Honestly, though, your advice had been much appreciated, and I never find it anything less than thorough.  I’d figured that you were merely busy making this little world turn, and, as always, I’d been grateful for your comments.  Indeed, I remain so, sir.  A hairdryer’s at the top of my list (sans the salon chair, of course), and thank you!  


Chop, yes, your recommendations about reservation with regard to certain specific tools makes great sense, but I don’t imagine that I could go overboard; if anything, I’ll be buying things well before I’m ready to use them, with perhaps a few select exceptions...  As something of a non-sequitur, I did that with my camera, which is quite beyond my current technical photography capabilities; however, I rather relish the fact that I have room in which to grow… You fix bikes; of course you do, Shovelchop.  I practically spent my early twenties riding.  I did not even own a car for quite some time while living aboard my boat.  I still love bikes, although I have since settled down into a much different lifestyle; those were wilder days, for sure.  Anyway, thanks again, madman.  


Spooks, after tearing apart my kitchen in a frenzied search for distilled vinegar, which I’d been certain were just behind the next particular - at last, eureka!  And yet, no, not quite so...  I’d been sure that I had some, and I do - but it’s apple cider vinegar, specifically.  So, my gold strike turns out to be iron pyrite, doesn't it?  It’s tragic that you say that pleather may be hopeless, because it happens to be among the materials for which I need the vinegar most particularly.  Also, that second rinse - I should take it that such eliminates the odor?  In truth, the imposition of having to choose between the risk of stains and the certainty of a lingering eau de douche would be enough to give me pause… Indeed, that adhesive seems ultimately practical, and thank you for elaborating - and also, for the caveat.  I will definitely be picking up some of that - along with rubber gloves.  

I don’t have any plans for casting, at least not yet; I’ve only been into this for a few months.  But as for much of the other tools and products mentioned herein, I’d say that most of those seem to qualify as fundamentals - which is quite precisely what I’d hoped to learn.  


Shazz, I’d remarked your mentioning the use of rhinestones.  Indeed, wet spaghetti is a brilliant solution...  Now that’s what one might call using your noodle!  Many thanks for the pro tip; I could probably do this for twenty years without ever thinking of that, and yet, it makes so much sense; the tack of pasta is just ridiculous; one could practically build bridges with it.  Thanks for your advice, sir.  It’s always very much appreciated.  

And Chop, your rhinestones being animated in the moonlight, winking up at you in insolence; sounds like you could use a spaghetti mop…  I will certainly keep "Instamold" in mind - why, if only for spectacular phenomena.  Thanks again for sharing your experiences.  


Sincerely, thank you for all your graciousness.  I realize that the whole trial-and-error process is not only inevitable, but that it also ultimately results in positive experience from which one is to learn.  However, some folk seem to become so embittered by their own error that they are reluctant to share what they have learned, and may yet hope - as in, some form of schadenfreude - that others will also experience those same failures…  

I suppose that what I mean to say is, simply, thank you all again for being above that sort of selfish, diminutive mentality.  

I am sincerely humbled by the collective knowledge of all you skillful artisans.


Again, thank you!


(Santa’s going to need a bigger sled.)  Smile


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PureEnergy wrote:Shazz, “power tools?”  I don’t plan to jackhammer anything, LOL, but I do hear your point…  I used to stand sandwiched between crowds of screaming fans and the massive concert amps of rock bands; decibels, indeed, I understand…  Feel fortunate that you can still hear those audio books. Thank you for the solid suggestions.

My Dremel is responsible for most of my hearing loss. It emits a higher frequency of sound than most power tools.


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shazzdan wrote:My Dremel is responsible for most of my hearing loss. It emits a higher frequency of sound than most power tools.

Yep.

Plus, it’s not just a matter of how loud, or the frequency, it’s the repetative nature. I lost half my hearing years ago, thanks to gun-fire and playing drums in a metal band. Now I have a job where the constant thrum of Diesel engines has slowly eroded even more of my hearing (that, and loud pipes on my motorcycle). It won’t be long before I need hearing aids.


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I have tinnitus, but that was caused by The Who. I have used much of what the others have used too. The one thing I can add is a pair of Xuron 440 high precision scissors. They are tough as hell and will even trim vinyl without needing to heat it. They are much more precise than getting a scalpel through cooling vinyl, which means that the blade will slip. Xuron have a massive range and they are well worth checking out for other handy stuff.

I too have a Dremel, which I must dig out of the garage before I move...

CHEERS!

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I've been looking at Xuron scissors. What's the difference between the 440 and the 441?


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This is an invaluable thread. Here’s a list of the top tools and supplies that I use the most.
-Dremel with cutting bits, cutting wheels and sanding drums.
-Goggles, mask, ear plugs
-jeweller’s tool kit (various pliers, cutters, pincers)
-various clamps, with foam, cork, etc for bumpers
-microfibre rags
-lighted visor with various attachable magnifiers
-jeweller’s loops
-electronics tweezer set
-haemostats and button looper
-tiny scissors
-knife and razor blade set
-good old needle, thread, thimble, pins, fusible patching, etc
-hot fix iron (or solder iron), regular iron, hairdryer, heating pad
-regular and hv super glue and debonder
-dye fixative

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Another thing I've started to need is a small anvil. I've been using a piece of half-inch mild steel plate for the last few months but it is getting pretty badly dinged up.

I use lots of heat shrink tubing for things like grips on handles, hose for miniature glassware, covering exposed wire, and so on. The last thing I used it on was this cricket bat.




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shazzdan wrote:I've been looking at Xuron scissors. What's the difference between the 440 and the 441?

I don't know, the page I looked at only listed the 440's, which are the ones I have. Just looked on the Xuron site and the 441's are for thread and cord and one of the blades is serrated.

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Got it. So the 440 is the one I want. Many thanks.


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Thanks for the additional input, gentlemen.  I appreciate all the insightful responses, tips and recommendations very much.  I have been short on time, but I intend to reply more directly to some of your suggestions and comments, and I do yet have a few specific questions regarding such.  

I would also love to see this all compiled into a singular list at some point.  While it continues to be ongoing, I hope that someone would be willing to condense it, eventually - perhaps along with brief notes as to the potential use for each listed product or tool.  How cool would that be?

This is a superb resource for just about any skill level, I would imagine.  

Many thanks again!


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Rogerbee

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shazzdan wrote:Got it. So the 440 is the one I want. Many thanks.

Yeah, they're tough little choppers!

CHEERS!

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Tools of the Trade…

A list of tools, materials and products that you may need to effectively kitbash, customize, or otherwise enjoy the creative artistry that is One Sixth Figures...





- Apoxie Sculpt:

- Small Anvil:

- Heat-Shrink Tubing:

- Hairdryer:

- Iron:

- Foamies:

- Tweezers:  

- Forceps:

- Jewelers Screwdriver Set:  

- Sewing Needles:  

- Thread:  

- Dremel Tool:  

- Scalpel:  

- Grinding Stone:  

- Needle-nose Pliers:  

- Magnifying Glass:  

- Crazy Glue:  

- Fabric Glue:  

- Blu-tac:

- Distilled Vinegar:  

- Jeweler's Saw:  

- Styrogoo Foam Adhesive:

- Zap-A-Gap:

- Contact Cement:  

- Instamorph:  

- Meltable Plastic Beads:  

- Cuticle scissors:

- Reverse-Action Tweezers:

- Files:

- Hand Drills:

- Acrylic Paint:  

- Sharpie Markers:  

- Glue Gun:  

- Various Screwdrivers:

- Vice-grips:

- Vice:  

- Foam Sanding Pads:

- Clamps:  

- Sponges:

- Paint Brushes:  

- Silicon Oil:  

- Digital Calipers:  

- Soldering Iron:  

- Tupperware:  

- Toolbox:  

- Cotton Buds:  

- Nail Polish Remover (Acetone-free):  

- Clear Nail Polish:  

- Airbrush:  

- Rhinestones:  

- Wet Noodle:  

- Goggles:  

- Mask:  

- Ear Plugs:  

- Microfiber Rags:  

- Lighted Visor (with various attachable magnifiers):  

- Jump Rings:  

- Electronics Tweezers:  

- Hemostats:  

- Button Looper:  

- Razor Blades:  

- Thimble:  

- Fusible Patches:

- Heating Pad:  

- Xuron Scissors:  

- Dye Fixative:





(Well, it's a start...)

Smile


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Rogerbee

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Yup, looking good so far!

CHEERS!

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Thanks, Rog.  I still have to add a few items, including some input of my own - and, of course, descriptive notes and uses.  Finally, I think it would be helpful to have it alphabetized.  

I also intend to include a list of contributors, in appropriate recognition.  Perhaps, also an appendix for links as to where to obtain certain items, as provided.


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I use Apoxie sculpt isbn#(762642013328) from Amazon. There are other colors. I use it for sculpting monster heads, weapons, dioramas, or building armor.

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Thank you PureEnergy for the Tools of the Trade list it will be most helpful.


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I appreciate that, Bad Wolf, but the real credit belongs to these fellows:


GubernatorFan
Stryker2011
Rogerbee
ReverendSpooky
Shazzdan
Shovelchop81
MarkEl
MerylAkiba


With sincere gratitude for their generous contributions…


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Rogerbee

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Thank you!

One thing I do use on occasion for warped vinyl kits is a microwave oven. However, do so at your own risk! Highly advisable to only do short bursts, maybe a minute at a time. Different vinyl has different properties. Be very, very careful! If you do too much for too long you can melt the piece. I would NOT advise ever doing it with a painted piece, use a hairdryer for that.

I once had a vinyl kit of Yoda, put it in the microwave, and set fire to it!! There was toxic smoke absolutely pouring from the microwave! Only minutes after I'd managed to clear all the smoke and got rid of the horrible smell, my folks came home. How they never noticed anything I will never know.

Poor Yoda looked like he'd been shot in the back by a laser cannon! I did salvage him though. Unless you have a lot of time on your hands, I wouldn't advise using one often, if at all. It's not like a TV dinner, you can't go off and leave it going.

CHEERS!

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Stryker2011

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Here’s a couple more useful things:
Cellophane/Seran wrap — to wrap around seamless arms and legs to slip clothes on easier.
Lint roller - for seamless figures (Scotch Tape works too)
Corn starch - for seamless bodies again (if you ever have to wash them, you need to recover them in it — otherwise they are very sticky/tacky).


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Rogerbee wrote:I once had a vinyl kit of Yoda, put it in the microwave, and set fire to it!! There was toxic smoke absolutely pouring from the microwave! Only minutes after I'd managed to clear all the smoke and got rid of the horrible smell, my folks came home. How they never noticed anything I will never know.

Poor Yoda looked like he'd been shot in the back by a laser cannon! I did salvage him though. Unless you have a lot of time on your hands, I wouldn't advise using one often, if at all. It's not like a TV dinner, you can't go off and leave it going.

CHEERS!


Thank you, Rogerbee!  

How funny…


Mum:  “Dear?  Does your TV dinner taste odd?”

Little Rog
:  “Huh?  Uh…  Nope.  Not odd at all...  Not remotely so, no...  Not like, vinyl or anything, heh-heh…  Why?  Does yours?”  pale


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***Tools of the Trade***


An alphabetized list of tools, materials and products that you may find useful to effectively kitbash, customize, or otherwise enjoy the creative artistry that is One Sixth Figures...




Contents…


Essential Supplies

Appendix A:  Pro tips

Contributor Credits  




...




Essential Supplies


“The single, most effective tool will always be your own imagination…”




A

- Acrylic Paints:  various brands useful for painting everything from tools and weapons to diorama features

- Airbrush:  a specialty tool for fine detail paint applications

- Animal Bones:  from chicken bones to mink skulls, such items can be useful for staging in dioramas; animal bones should always be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected before using

- Anvil:  

- Apoxie Sculpt:  a sculpting medium useful for a variety of creative endeavors



B

- Blu-tac:  

- Button Looper:  



C

- Cellophane / Seran Wrap:  useful for wrapping seamless silicon figures in order to allow for ease in dressing and undressing; also aids in protecting silicon figures from the staining due to exposure to the dyes in colored fabrics  

-Charms:  charms from the various lines (Charm Me, Fairy Tale, Explorer, Found Objects, etc.), typically found in craft stores such as Michael’s and Hobby Lobby, can be used for a variety of 1:6 diorama props and tools

- Clamps:  useful for holding projects in position; also handy for maintaining surface contact between two components in order to allow for adhesives to set

- Contact Cement:  particularly useful for attaching wigs / hair pieces to figures

- Cotton Balls:  useful for a variety of purposes, from spot cleaning to paint applications

- Cotton Buds:  

- Cuticle scissors:  particularly effective for trimming tiny areas



D

- Digital Calipers:  

- Dye Fixative:  

- Distilled Vinegar:  a practical preventative measure to minimize the risk of staining due to dyes in clothing fabrics

- Dremel Tool:   an effective multipurpose tool with variable speed settings useful for drilling, sanding, buffing, etc.; available with a variety of specific bits



E

- Ear Plugs:  protect your ears while working

- Electronics Tweezers:  



F

- Fabric / Material:  for making custom garb  

- Fabric Elastic:  useful for a variety of purposes; fastener

- Fabric Glue:  a thin liquid adhesive such as Fray Guard can be useful for sealing trimmed edges of fabrics in order to prevent fraying

- Files:  

- Flocking:  

- Foam Board:  for constructing backgrounds and landscaping; can be carved, painted and textured

- Foamies:  used to fill in larger cavities in order to secure Head Sculpts to neck connectors that are otherwise too small

- Foam Sanding Pads:  practical for prepping surfaces before painting; also useful for weathering effects

- Forceps:  

- Fusible Patches:  



G

- Goggles:  protect your eyes while working

- Green Stuff (Sculpting Medium):  a binary sculpting compound that when mixed becomes an effective medium for creating fine detail work

- Grinding Stone:  



H

- Hair Gel / Hairspray:  for taming and shaping rooted hair

- Hand Drills:  

- Hairdryer:  typically with settings adjustable from low to high, useful for softening hard plastics in order to make them temporarily more supple and easier to work with

- Heat Gun:  for jobs that may require highly concentrated heat

- Heating Pad:  

- Heat-Shrink Tubing:  

- Hemostats:  

- Hot Glue Gun:  useful for a variety of spot applications on figures and dioramas; can also be a practical substitute for sewing work



I

- Instamorph:  

- Iron:  always useful for removing wrinkles in fabric



J

- Jewel Picker:  useful for lifting and placing small details such as rhinestones  

- Jeweler's Saw:  
 
- Jeweler’s Screwdriver Set:  

- Jump Rings (Jeweler’s Connector Rings):  useful fasteners, available in several sizes  



L

- Lint Roller  effective for removing dusting from seamless silicon bodies

- Lighted Visor (with various attachable magnifiers):  



M

- Mask:  protect your lungs while working

- Microfiber Rags:  

- Magnifying Glass:  useful for viewing tiny aspects of your work, for painting or detailing; lighted magnetifying lenses are also effective and may be found in tabletop and headband / eyeglasses varieties

- Meltable Plastic Beads:  can be used as a filler for neck cavities for a securer fit  




N

- Nail Polish:  

- Nail Polish Remover (Acetone-free):  

- Needle-nose Pliers:  

- Nuvo Crystal Drops:  liquid drops that dry round; useful for simulating small details such as rivets or gemstones, available in a multitude of colors  



P

- Paint Brushes:  essential tools for painting, whether detailing or broad swathing; maintaining a wide array of shapes and sizes of quality brushes can be most practical

- Paper Towels:  handy for spills and general clean-up

- Pastels:  for adding color to seamless silicon bodies (artist quality brands recommended)

- Polyethylene Foam Sheets:  useful for replicating stone bases, etc.; typically available in sheets of black or white, of varying thickness and width

- Polyurethane Varnish:  provides a durable finish to paint applications; available in matte or gloss  



Q

- Q-Tips:   practical for an incendiary of purposes, from applying paint to cleaning small areas



R

- Razor Blades:  
 
- Reverse-Action Tweezers:  practical tool for hands-free holding small components and parts

- Rhinestones:  useful as decorative elements; available in a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors  



S

- Scalpel:  for sharp, clean cuts

- Sculpting Tools: useful for a wide variety of purposes involving detail work

- Scissors:  quality, heavy-duty brands include Tim Holtz Ionic

- Super Glue:  various brands of permanent glue can be a useful adhesive  

- Screwdrivers:  

- Sewing Needles:  for stitching garments or adding certain decorative elements

- Sharpie Markers:  

- Silicon Oil:  
 
- Soldering Iron:  

- Sponges:  can be used to absorb paint during clean-up or as an applicator to provide a specific effect

- Styrogoo Foam Adhesive:  



T

- Talcum Powder:  for revitalizing seamless silicon bodies which tend to become tacky with time; also, corn starch

- Toothpicks:  useful for applying tiny amounts of paint, as well as for other intricate detailing purposes

- Thread:  for altering or fastening garments; also useful for adding certain decorative elements; available in a wide variety of colors

- Thimble:  protect your fingers while using blades and needles

- Toolbox:  useful for keeping tools together, organized, and at hand
 
- Tupperware:  compartmentalized storage containers can be invaluable for organizing and storing components, parts, or details

- Tweezers:  useful for getting a grip on tiny items



V

- Vice:  

- Vice-grips:  



W

- Water:  a container of clean water at hand can be useful for removing acrylic paint from brush tips, or for general cleaning

- Wet Wipes:  moist towelettes can be used to wipe down surfaces or to clean and prep work areas

- Wire:  of various gauges; can be used for adding jewelry components and other details; as a fastener, or for lining between layers garments which allow for poseability

- Wire Cutters:  essential for cutting wire  

- Woodland Scenics Products:  designed for railroad modelers, WS produces a broad range of landscaping products, such as clump foliage and rock molds which can be useful at any scale



X

- Xacto Knife:  ideal for making precision cuts; a variety of specific blade sizes and shapes are available for various purposes

- Xuron Scissors:  



Z

- Zap-A-Gap:  




...




Appendix A: Pro Tips


- The Wet Noodle:  “In lieu of a jewel picker, wet the tip of a piece of spaghetti for picking up small beads and jewels…”  - Shazzdan

- ‘Scot It:  “Scotch Tape can be used in place of a lint roller for cleaning the dust from seamless silicon bodies…”  - Rogerbee

- Yoda Al Dente:  “You can use a microwave to heat vinyl kits.  Cautious, short periods of time is absolutely critical; avoid overcooking, or you will melt your kit and create a noxious bio-hazard…”  - Rogerbee

- The Mad Surgeon:  “When cutting, grinding, or sanding animal bones, be sure to wear a mask, as the dust of such can be hazardous to your lungs…”  - Shazzdan

- Jacques Stands:  “I have effectively customized Eiffel Tower Christmas ornaments into 1:6 jack stands… Oui…”  - Bad Wolf-787

- Handy Advice:  “You can use a hairdryer to heat up tightly-fitting hands before securing them onto the figures, but don’t overdo it.  The same method can also be useful to soften the inner neck cavities to accept slightly oversized neck connectors…”  - GubernatorFan

- Guv’s Guillotine:  “Using a sharp blade such as an Xacto, heads with affixed necks can be modified to fit the ball joints of neckless bodies; simply carefully trim off the neck, little by little until you have the desired fit…  “  - GubernatorFan

- Magic Wind:  “Thin-gauge wire can be secured between layers of fabric garments such as capes in order to give them functional poseability…”  -TheCreativeConsensus




...




Contributor Credits  


With special thanks to the Pros for their generous contributions…


GubernatorFan
Stryker2011
Rogerbee
ReverendSpooky
Shazzdan
Shovelchop81
MarkEl
MerylAkiba
Bad Wolf-787



...

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Rogerbee

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PureEnergy wrote:


Thank you, Rogerbee!  

How funny…


Mum:  “Dear?  Does your TV dinner taste odd?”

Little Rog
:  “Huh?  Uh…  Nope.  Not odd at all...  Not remotely so, no...  Not like, vinyl or anything, heh-heh…  Why?  Does yours?”  pale

Yeah, I got away with that by the skin of my teeth! It's fine as long as you do a little at a time.

CHEERS!

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It's great seeing this all compiled together, so thanks PureEnergy for starting this. It really is a great resource.


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Rogerbee wrote:
PureEnergy wrote:


Thank you, Rogerbee!  

How funny…


Mum:  “Dear?  Does your TV dinner taste odd?”

Little Rog
:  “Huh?  Uh…  Nope.  Not odd at all...  Not remotely so, no...  Not like, vinyl or anything, heh-heh…  Why?  Does yours?”  pale

Yeah, I got away with that by the skin of my teeth! It's fine as long as you do a little at a time.

CHEERS!


Indeed, quite literally…  Served always al dente, Yoda should…
Laughing

The folks probably never imagined that their Little Rog would ever try to nuke his toys.  Amusing how, with regard to the perceived naivete of children, it is rather typically the parents who are most susceptible to such chicanery...  


Thanks, Rev, but as I say, the credit well belongs to all you maestros.  I hope that my liberal paraphrasing of quotes for the “Pro Tips” section is acceptable to everyone.  Otherwise, just let me know.  


Also, feel free to add any notes here that you would like to have included in the glossary, and I will add them.  Some of the tools that have as yet no explanatory notes are so because I don’t quite understand their purpose, and any further description / explanation may be required before I can fill in those fields.  So if you know, please break it down for me as though I were three, and we will eventually have a unique and thorough compendium here.  

Many thanks again.


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I'd say that this is coming along quite nicely...

Very Happy


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