Monday, 30 December 2013

Wet Palettes

I have finally found a moulded plastic box, and foam lining that works brilliantly for me as a wet palette.

I've tried many things before but not found anything as simple as this.

The box is impact resistant with a metal pin hinge and a firm clasp and comes ready lined with a close cell foam. Its shallow enough to mean you're not reaching 'over' the lip of a "tupperware" box and it has little to no lip. When open the lid lies flat and actually means that you could double your palette area (although obviously you can't close it with paint and water in if you use both sides.

I'm thinking of knocking them out of my webstore.

Two palette sizes.
Small 90 x 130 x 23mm (with a usable palette size of 70 x 110mm) - estimate £7
Large 110 x 160 x 29mm (with a usable palette size of90 x 140mm) - estimate £9

Both sizes include 15 sheets of parchment, a zip lock bag to keep the box airtight if you're not painting for several days, and a length of copper wire to help keep down mold growth.

Good idea or not?

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Diorama of Doom - XXV - FINAL

Episode VII - The Last Pedestrian.

A week last Tuesday, not far from a certain forest moon...

The Emperor is dead. The once mighty galactic empire is in turmoil; it's elite forces destroyed by a rag tag bunch of amateur insurgents and knee-high plushies armed only with native spears and slip hazards. The catastrophic failings of the mechanised walkers were clearly exposed.

With the death of the last of the Sith, scientific rationalism rather than a quasi-religious kratocracy, is in resurgence.

Assuming command of the remains of the empire military machine, in a ramshackle maintenance hanger, the new leader, Kim Wrong-Un, commands that all remaining bipedal units are retrofitted with a more proven motive method...

The final diorama - Front

The final diorama - rear

"Pick on someone your own size!"
A heavily armed ewok takes on the might of the imperial mechanised infantry. Dangerous things fruit!


Immortal leader Kim Wrong-Un and his generals oversee the refitting of the walker fleet to a more sensible mode of motive power.

The best brains in the  Empire Science Corp consider their plans for amputating the walkers.

The Walker cockpit is craned onto the tank body.

Checking the inspection pit.

Waste Disposal
Here we see our previous heroes Bob and Dave, due to the collpase of the empire economy they have abandoned their jobs as line-markers and taken up as industrial scrap merchants. They discuss the likely cash values of a skip full of robot legs, flier engines and, worryingly a live guided missile and a drum of radioactive material..

As Night Falls
Work on the rectifications goes on well into the dark, such is the urgency and commitment of the empire's greatest engineers.

The lighting effects are done with ElectoLuminescent paper. I have never worked with it before but it has been an absolute joy. Straightforwards to use and install; the biggest problem has been hiding the battery packs and the cables under the base.

The bright orange cable that runs in the floor and to the tank is ElectroLuminescent wire, it has a controller on it that makes it pulse as though it is "pumping plasma". It doesn't show up well on the pictures, but at some stage I will take a video to show it and play around with the camera settings to get better dark pictures.

After three months of building this, I am off to start Christmas shopping and I hope not to have to touch a paint brush until the new year!

Merry Christmas everyone.

"May the Wheel be with you!"

Diorama of Doom - XXIV

Final picture.  More to follow.

And lit up in the dark...

Monday, 23 December 2013

Diorama of Doom - XXIII

And the final figures...

Bob and Dave (second and third from left) join the Empire's elite technicians and engineers...

Light at the end of the tunnel...

Sunday, 22 December 2013

Diorama of Doom - XXII

And the three scientists...

Diorama of Doom - XXI

Three down. Nine to Go.

The Holy Immortal Leader and his Generals oversee the refitting of the 'Big Giant Head' onto a more sensible means of locomotion.

Add caption

Diorama od Doom - XX

OK, here we go...

12 bright shiny models... the end is in sight...

Saturday, 21 December 2013

Diorama of Doom - XIX

So, it all starts to come together ...

(Albeit after two hours of winding cable and linking chain and fiddling and more fiddling and cursing and yet more fiddling ... you get the idea!)

Craning in the big giant head.


So, now I just have a dozen figures to paint and the "big reveal".

Diorama of Doom - XVIII

And the Gantry Crane is broadly complete...

Diorama of Doom - XVII

And just to keep you interested... A tank with its innards out.

Diorama of Doom - XVI

"It's 4 days to deadline, I've got a full pot of paint, half a pack of green stuff, it's still dark... and I'm wearing sunglasses."
"Hit it."

Shameless blues brothers misquote

Occasional Progress pictures will be posted here, please check back, all encouragement welcome...

Wish me luck!

Have a skip to be going on with...

Sunday, 15 December 2013

Diorama of Doom - XV

Managed a few hours with the painting stick and the glue tube again this weekend... just 10 days to go! (gulp!)
Started the hazard stripes on the dangerous edges

Robot 'head' (kind of) installed on some sensible locomotion

Completed robot 'head' - now all I need to do is suspend it from the gantry crane.
Lifting accessories designed and built - the long chains will loop under the armpits of the robot 'head'
A few bits of gubbins to fill out the rest of the scenery

Sunday, 8 December 2013

Diorama of Doom XIV

More modelling work today has resulted in these efforts to make the overhead gantry,  cradle, winch and festoon system.

For reference this is what I am trying to make. Overhead gantry crane showing the motorised cradle that runs along the girder and the winch. The 'festoon' is the arrangement that allows the electricity cable to bepulled out as the cradle moves. Rather like curtain rings on a curtain pole.

I see yellow paint in my immediate future
 This is beginning to feel never ending.

Festoon system assembled to the main crane gantry.

Overhead view of the gantry and festoon system
Detail of the gantry cradle with the built in winch and motor
The cradle and winch are scratch built from sheet and tube styrene and  a couple of wheels from model kits. It can't be assembled until last as it need to be glued in place to the girder.

I'm just off to spray some yellow paint.