Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Wednesday, 25 December 2013

Tutorial custom kiwami tamashii agito shining form!

hey all,

yes! Its yet another Kiwami customs!! ;p recently i am really happy making these guys coz they're small, they dont clutter up my desks when i custom them and its easier and faster to custom! hahaha! So yes Im back and this time its going to be: Kiwami Tamashii Agito Shining Form.

For those who are not aware of the kiwami line, its an offshoot of SIC only that its figure is a little below 4 inch instead of the standard 7 inch SIC figures. So they come a lot smaller but with good articulations and retained the details you see in bigger SICs.

For my Agito Shining Form, I used a kiwami Agito ground form to make this. And here we go:

Step 1 : As with all my customs, I always start off with sanding all the parts that requires resculpt or repaint. This let the paint or putty stick on the surface better. Before that, I used a hairdryer to take apart the figure for easier resculpt and later repaint.

Step 2 : I cut out those parts that needed resculpt:
- The chest and abdomen piece (you may decide to leave the chest along and not need to cut it. I did it so that i can have some linings beside the sculpted parts which is why i did it but after i completed the custom i realised those lines isnt really obvious anyway so you may skip this part if you want)
- A slice of the lower arms and legs. These parts needs to be resculpted to shining agito's pattern.
- Cut a part of the belt buckle out. See explanation below.

Step 3 : For the belt buckle, agito ground form is of a stylised squarish design. You need to turn it into a triangle shape of shining agito's. The shortcut of instead of a resculpt is to use the buckle already on agito ground form. What you gotta do is cut off the part i highlighted in red from the belt buckle. That part is incredibly small so please be very careful when you cut it to avoid cutting off the globe in the middle or missed cutting off those tiny vents that comes with the part. Cut it off like you see in the photo below.

Now, flip the cut off part and glue it back on the belt buckle45degree to the left and you will get a triangle! See photo below. Its that easy just need to be really careful when cutting it. The one on the right is the shining version.
Step 4 : Add putty on all the parts that require resculpt, see below photo. For the lower abdomen you will need to do layering by adding a first layer on it first and then 2 more to form a layered armor design.

For the chest area once the first putty layer has dried, add a new layer on top. This layer is the detailed sculpt layer for shining agito's mosaic layered chest. For this layer I used tamiya putty. You may still use hardware store putty if you like but for me its slightly better if i use tamiya putty because (1) the differences in color between layers makes it easier for me to see when i am carving the tamiya putty layer up and (2) the tamiya putty is easier to peel off compared to hardware putty. I added the layer and let it dry for half an hour or so to make it easier to cut and peel.
Now, to make shining agito's mosaic-like chest sculpt, I use my trusty blade again to cut shapes into the tamiya putty layer. At certain area I actually remove the tamiya putty layer altogether revealing the hardware putty layer beneath. I did this because I wanted a more 3-D sculpt on his chest. To peel the putty off, you simple use your blade to cut lines all around the area and then use the tip of your blade as a lever and push the tamiya putty out. If you push it fast enough the putty will come off very cleanly. If during the process of peeling/pushing you find that the putty is still sticky, stop and wait for another 15 - 20 minutes to allow the putty to dry somemore. I find that placing the putty under the sun or a fan makes the drying process faster so you can work on it faster. You will soon end up with something like the photo below. I used the excess tamiya putty to form the next armor layer for his lower abdomen. Once this layer dried, I added the final armor layer on his lower abdomen to form ribbed armor sculpt.

For the shoulder pads, I added a layer of putty at the edge of each pads as a basebefore i add more putty on it, see photo below. To form that shape on the shoulder pad, I let the putty i added on the shoulder pad to dry about 1 hr and then using a blade i cut the groove on the area where the putty meets the real shoulder pad, again see photo below.


Now once the putty on the shoulder pad dried, start adding more putty on it to form the shining agito shoulder pad shape. See photo below.

 for the lower arms and legs, I used a liner to draw the details i wanted to carve on it first before using my line engraver to carefully carve those fine details out. I made sure the lines are wide enough so that later when i color it it is more obvious and deep enough so that when i correct any overlapping paint, the color in the lines wont be affected.

While the putty on the body is being dried, I started working on making his head and swords. I need to replace the front portion of the head because the original agito head has red colored eyes and these red colors wont come off no matter how much color remover/ thinner i used to rub on it. Shining agito eyes are orange in color so I have no choice but to replicate another front head portion.

For those following my blog will know i use oyumaru resing to make duplicates. This is because i can't use two-part molds which is more previse and can make 3-D duplicates whereby oyumaru resin makes one-sided replicas due to (1) its very messy, expensive and time consuming and (2) the process is very smelly as i understand it, can't have that when i have two small monsters running around the house. So yea, using oyumaru resin (the process of how to use it can be found in my earlier postings) I replicated the head, see photos below. For shining agito's scimitar like sword, i used a agito trinity sword as a base. Using oyumaru resin i replicated the sword shape. Once the oyumaru resin dried and hardened i removed the base sword. I then dip the oyumaru resin back into hot water for a minute to loosen it up. I then quickly take the resin out and pull and push the straight sword shape into a scimitar shape. I then let the resin harden. See photo below. I then shape a line of wire into the shape of the scimitar to act as a skeleton base for it. The wire actually protects the sword from breaking apart if it was made purely from putty. The other advantage i have found later on is that a weapon that has a metal wire in it an be attached to any magnetic surface allowing it to have an alternative method of attaching the weapon on a figure or bike.

 As I have mentioned before, oyumaru resin can only replicate one side of the object. You can make a replicate of the other side of the object by repeating the process (I have done this successfully replicating a complete Diend gun, no sliding card holder though) but its hard for shining agito scimitar because i will need to make an exact oyumaru resin replicate of the other side of agito straight sword with theexact same curve as your first resin mold. If the curve is not exact you can't glue the 2 sides together with the exact angled curves meeting each other. So I was forced to sculpt the other side of both scimitar swords. I have yet to finish the sculpt as I got bored ;p

The photo below will show you the difference between the curved scimitar replicate and the straight original agito sword. Also you can see the duplicate agito head before paint layer.
Now, for the head, I used oyumaru resin to make a mold. Then I used transparent putty to create a head. Make sure you don't dump too much transparent putty onto the mold. This is because you will need the behind surface of your duplicate head to be as thin as possible so that when you paint metallic silver on the behind surface (seriously I dont know how to describe this properly, what i meant is the flat surface behind the front of the duplicate face) it is as near to the face surface as possible allowing light to shine on the metallic silver to give off light for his transparent orange eyes and red horns (again you can find the merits of making shiny transparent surface using metallic silver backgrounds in my last posting). Color the duplicate head with clear red for his horn and clear orange for his eyes. Let the metalli silver paint on the behind surface to dry first. Then cut off the original agito's face and replace it with the duplicate face. Use putty to shore up any cracks between the duplicate face and agito's remaining head. I broke the smaller horns while cutting up agito's face but no biggie, I reglue them back on. Before you glue the duplicate head in, take this opportunity to repaint the smaller horns with metallic silver first then a layer of clear red.
Two last bit of sculpting you need to do is to:

1) Add those 3 tiny triangles orbiting the orb on the middle of the beltbuckle. Just add small pieces of putties on the belt buckle, it doesnt need to be perfect triangles yet. Let them dry for say 1 hour and cut the putty into triangle shapes. And thats it, the sculpting part is done.
2) Add some sculpt on the arms to form some 3-D lines at the edge of agito's gloves.

Unfortunately, I totally forgot to take a photo of the pre-painted sculpted agito shining form figure so I can't show you how it looks like. I also totally forgot to take a photo of the figure after i repainted it metallic silver before the clear red :(

Anyway, the painting process is simple, just follow the steps below:
1) Sand all parts that needed painting.
2) Paint all surface that needed repaint with super metallic silver (I use Mr Color paint for this).Let everything dries
3) Paint clear red over those linings on the lower arm and leg anklets. Don't worry about overlapping paint, just repaint those overlaps with metallicsilver once the clear red dried
4) Paint clear red over metallic silver on the relevant parts (see photos below to see which parts required clear red paint. For agito's back, refer to the finished painted back in one of hte photos in the gallery below).
5) Use a liner or a washer (mostly washer due to kiwami's small size making it very hard for liners to reach into those tiny crevices) to make linings
6) Spray a layer of clear gloss overcoat to protect the repainted surface.
IMPORTANT:  Always let each layer of paint to dry first before adding the next. This avoid wrong color mixings and sticky surface syndrome when dried.

And that wraps up the tutorial :D Please enjoy the photo gallery below and feel free to ask any questions about the custom process, I'll try to answer them if i know how :) Until the next time!!


Sunday, 22 December 2013

Expanded Tutorial of Vic01's (from Robot Japan forum) mod on SIC Black's joints PLUS other simple mods by other customisers!

hi people!

As requested by Arrancar, here is a simple tutorial for modding Kamen Rider Black's joint to make it more poseable. The original modding is NOT done by me. Its by Vic01 from Robot Japan forum (see link: http://robotjapan.proboards.com/thread/12645) :) I just add simple steps so people understand more how its done. The photos are courtesy from Vic01 too. I hope he doesnt mind coz i am not a member of robot japan and didnt ask for his permission to use these D: Vic01 if you see this, hope you are ok with it! ;p

Before we start you need to get the following items ready:
1) pliers (optional)
2) hand drill (must)
3) revoltech joints black color (4 single joint 8mm and 2 double joint 8 mm, or you can use 10mm onces for hte legs)
4) blade (optional)
5) hairdryer (optional)

Step 1:
Remove all the existing joints from Black. You can use pliers, your own hand whatever works. You can also heat it up with hair dryer to make the joint eaiser to remove.

In this case, you should remove the knee joints, elbow joints and shoulder joints.

Step 2:

Use a hand drill or a hobby drill to drill holes on the following parts:
1) Shoulder ball socket located on the chest part
2) Shoulder ball socket located on the upper arm
3) Ball sockets located on the upper arm connecting to lower arm
4) Ball sockets located on the lower arm connecting to the upper arm
5) Ball sockets located on the upper leg connecting to the lower leg
6) Ball sockets located on the lower leg connecting to the upper leg.

Make sure you use a drill bit that is smaller than the joint on the revoltech to ensure there are friction between the drilled holes and the revoltech joint. Also using smaller drill bit is easier. You can always enlarge the hole with larger drill bits later when you found the revoltech joint wont fit in the drilled hole.

Step 3

Step 3:
Simply plug in the revoltech joints into those drilled holes and you are done. Use single joint on the shoulder and arm and double joint on the legs.

And we are done, see below for the enhanced poseability:
You can actually do additional mod on the thigh joints connecting to the waist by using those double joints found on hlj (see below) for more additional poseability.
Well thats it, hope this is useful! :)
While i was looking for pics for the above tutorial, i stumbled on more simple mods done by others which can be very useful to SIC collectors:
Here is Kenjitron's mod on Stronger's neck articulation to make it poseable:
And here is Miko Matsing's mod on Kiwami Kuuga to make him taller:
For the kuuga mod, I'll like to add a note that those taller double ball joints can be found not only in kiwami faiz sets but indicidually from ball joint sets found on HLJ.com, its cheaper and you get a lot of spare joints:

Thursday, 19 December 2013

Tutorial custom kiwami tamashii Shining Tornador/ Alternate Tornador

All right for those who has been following my blog, you will know i bought a bunch of kiwamis some time back and whats better to do with them than make customs out of them. Not to mention customising kiwamis is a lot easier due to its size and it doesnt clutter up my desk. For the uninitiated, a kiwami figure stands at nearly 4 inche compared to the normal SIC which is at 7 inche.
So I got a spare kiwami tornador. Didnt know what to do with it until i saw this nice sic takumi alternate tornador (see photo above) and realised i can change my kiwami tornador (see photo below) into that plus a bonus of changing an kiwami agito ground form into an agito shining form :D

I know some of you must be thinking "oh its just a repaint" and I do agree, its just a repaint, no resculpt involved. However, I cannot stress more the fact that repainting something isnt just as simple as slapping paint on the surface and thats it. Yes, you can slap on a layer of paint and thats it, its a repaint but to do a good repaint you need to make sure a few steps are done to (1) ensure it is smooth, (2) lasts longer (3) shines in the right color you wanted.
I am still learning in this aspect but I will show you what i know from my basic knowledge on at least the basics in repaint.
All right, first off, sand every surface you need to repaint, this is to allow the paint to secure better on the surface plus remove some of those red paint (this will make it easier to replace the red with metallic silver later).
Now we need to change those transparent surfaces from orange to red. You need to clear as much as possible the orange paint on the surface. You wont be able to clear them all as its kinda embedded into the clear plastics already. Luckily orange and red mixes unlike say for example orange with blue. So even though you have some orange color left on it, it wont affect the overall red. If it were clear blue you paint over it it might turn a little purplish.

Once you cleared the transparent orange with color remover, you also have to remove that metallic yellow layer at the inner surface. This inner metallic yellow layer serves as a layer to reflect light when it is shined on it by light bringing out the transparent orange color. I wanted to remove it so that i can replace it with a metallic silver layer to reduce the yellow/orange-ness of it and reflect the clear red layer i was going to paint on the outer surface later. So its off with the metallic yellow layer and repainted metallic silver (see photo below).

Once thats done, paint the outer surface of the transparent areas clear red. See photo below.

Note how shiny those clear red can get thanks to the metallic silver underneath reflecting light off it?


Now once the clear red dried, start repainting those red parts into silver. See photo above. You will need to paint at least 2 layers of metallic silver coz silver over red dont really mix and the red will show through. Only by at least 2 or 3 layers will the red be covered with the metallic silver. You should also paint metallic silver over the part of the top back of the bike (which was in matt black originally). This area will be added with a clear red layer after the metallic silver dried to give you a glossy blood red scheme (see photo below top right).

Next cover the metallic silver inner surface of the transparent parts with clear red as well (see photo below bottom left).

You are almost done, see photo below. Once everything dried, start doing linings.

Finally, use a white washer (thinned out paint you can find these at hobby shops, not cheap though. you'll be asking "why can't i thin my own paint instead of buying this?" the answer lies not in the paint but in that very thin very absorbant brush that comes with the washer. The brush is what makes the washer have the ability to create those fine lines on crevices just by touching it on the crevice) to make lines over the bike for more details. A final question some might ask: "why do i need to do linings? does it really help enhance the details?" the answer is of course "yes" as you can see from the comparison photos below:

Remember to spray a coat of clear gloss coat over it to protect the paint!

Well thats it, enjoy the remaining galleries of the KIWAMI shining tornador post linings:

Lastly here is a comparison pic between the original tornador and the shining tornador (unfortiunately this is pre-lining pic ;p didnt take one to compare post lining).

Now the fun really starts with the custom of kiwami shining agito ;D but thats another part. See ya next time!

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Tutorial on Repair of Faiz broken knee joint

This is a very simple tutorial on a quick fix on Faiz' broken knee. Now, for those whose faiz's knee is not broken, please be very careful when you are twisting the knee horizontally. The ball joint is somewhat tight and if you keep trying to twist it horizontally, the stress will be on the hinge joint right above the ball joint risking breakage over there. More often it is the outer hinge joint which will break. Sometimes its the inner hinge, mine was the inner hinge. There are a couple of ways to fix it and I'll point it out here. For my case, my joint broke and I have foolishly glued it shut rendering the entire joint useless. So I have to replace the entire joint altogether. Unless you manage to purchase those replacement faiz joints found on taobao, you will need to use revoltech joints.
Now the first thing you need to do is remove the metal knee cap from the broken joint and glue it on the lower leg (see photo below). You will need to drill a hole o nthe inside of the lower leg ball socket to allow the revoltech joint to go in. You do not need to drill any holes on the upper leg as there is already a hole you can pluck the revoltech joint in.
EDIT: just in case you guys are wondering, you can find revoltech joints in HLJ:
Here is a crucial junction you need to make a decision. Do you use a 10mm single revoltech joint or a 8mm double revoltech joint? The advantage of a double joint is of course more poseability. However, the double joint is way too long and will render faiz having a longer leg than the other (see 3rd photo below). The way to solve this is to cut part of the upper leg away to fit in the double revoltech joint and still maintain a even height pair of legs.
For me I chosed the other option and thats using a 10mm single revoltech joint as the added poseability of a double joint is kinda useless for me (see photo below). Since I have drilled a hole on the lower leg, the revoltech joint will fit right in like the photo below.

I then glue the revoltech joint to the upper leg. I do NOt glue the revoltech joint on the lower leg. I ensure that the hole i drilled on the lower leg is small enough to allow friction to hold the revoltech joint to hte lower leg tight. By not glueing the lower leg to the revoltech joint, I allow horizontal movement for the lower leg. The result can be seen below:

Now, I would like to explain a bit on an alternate method of repairing faiz joint without using revoltech joints. This can be used if there is only breakage on the outer or inner hinge and you did not glue everything together.

For this example, I assume that the outer hinge is broken and that nothing is being glued in place.(see item "A" on photo below, the blue lines represent the breakage

First, use a hair dryer and blow on the hinge joint to allow easier removal the metal rod on the hinge joint and then the lower leg from the upper leg (see item "B" on photo below). The removal of the metal rod can be very tricky. Use a screwdriver to push it out. Use something to lever the hinge so that the metal rod can be removed without damaging further the hinge joint.

Then, get a thin sheet of plastic (you can even use those plastic on plastic bottles) and cut a small wheel the size of the hinge joint out of it with a hole in the middle (see item "C" on photo below).

What you do is sand the inner surface of the broken outer hinge and the plastic wheel to allow better connection for glue. Glue the plastic wheel on the broken hinge joint inner surface (see red line on photo below). The plastic wheel will act as a support for the broken hinge joint. Glue the broken hinge joint back in place. Let everything dry.

Use a hairdryer again and blow on the joint and the metal rod. Reinsert the inner hinge joint between the outer hinge joint and reinsert the metal rod back in place.

You should have a repaired faiz joint again with better support with the metal wheel.

Hope this helps! :)