You can do anything really to channel the trigger guard for the trigger. Router, dremel, hobby knife, chisel... whatever you have on hand that will do the job.
You can do anything really to channel the trigger guard for the trigger. Router, dremel, hobby knife, chisel... whatever you have on hand that will do the job.
Status Update (11 Days Left)
Man, I couldn't have picked a worse time to get sick. Some things had to change as a result of that and further realizations as this project went on.
Strangely my class did not have a chamfer bit for the router despite having 2 boxes of router bits. I tried to chamfer the sides myself with a router and a course sanding bit. I think I'm just going to use a fillet bit and a router instead. I'll probably smoothen out the insides with bondo.
I tried milling out the trigger slot but ended up needing to make additional adjustments with a dremel. In retrospect, I probably shouldnt have cleared it all the way to the back, but I'll get to that later.
In order to have a stopper for the trigger spring, I made a small channel into the wood and glued inside a lego piece. Luckily, the little circular extrusions underneath fit the spring perfectly.
I used many small scraps of masking tape to cover up the exposed area of the trigger. I needed to insert the trigger and connect both halves of the gun in order to make further progress, and I needed a way to paint everything else without repainting the trigger. This way I can peel off the masking tape with tweezers after everything else is painted.
I bribed my roommates with chocolate and ramen so that I can have the living room for the next 2 weeks.
A big box of lasercut pieces to sort through and attach once the body starts coming together.
Currently I'm working (or trying to) on the barrel assembly. I'm struggling to find the right diameter PVC pipings, and I don't want to have to buy a 10 feet pipe for 6" of it. I have a big fat dowel (you can see it in the corner of one of the pictures) that I am considering lathing.
I've decided to abandon the whole back top syringe handle altogether, and will instead have it become a simple geometric stock. This was partly to cut down on the workload, and partly to not have the end result look like a super soaker. I've also shelved the bayonet and lower front canister for now, as I can attach those at a later point. I've also ditched the CCFL cause it seemed out of place. So much time learning electrical knowledge that won't even be used in the end lol.
One thing that I am trying to decide on is what to use to smoothing out the edges. I tried using apoxie sculpt today, and was disappointed to find that it didn't stick to MDF all that well, making it difficult to sculpt. I also tried heating and bending styrene to cover up the inside of the hand guard and trigger slot similar to what Volpin did here:
But styrene proved difficult to manipulate, and it kept warping and curling. I think I might just use bondo to smooth out everything. Should I consider bondo glaze or dolphin glaze for that instead? I also have wonderflex on hand, though I don't know how well that'll work.
The last thing I'm trying to do is figure out how to paint this thing. Alot of it will probably be assembled when I reach the painting stage, just because I need it assembled to guide construction. I'm wondering if I should construct some kind of hanger or arm to hold it up so I can hit every side with primer and paint.
Man, I'm learning so many new things in the construction of this so far, though I wish I knew half of those coming in.
One thing I will say is that if I die from exposure to all this dust and paint, I hope to be reincarnated as something with more arms.
This guy has the right idea.
PS: Yes, I use a respirator, but its hard to get all this dust out of my living room.
Last edited by DukeNukem117; Dec 4, 2011 at 5:39 AM.
You can always go back and repaint the trigger so dont let that hold you up.
For painting the surface, if its going to be smooth plastic or acrylic, you can cheap it out and dust the cleaned surface with krylon fusion out of a rattle can. Self etching primer will work as will a filler primer. One issue you will run into with masking to paint colors is the tape will pull the paint off that plastic. Demask the tape by first applying the tape to your shirt or pants. This takes some of the stick off while still leaving enough to hold and do its job. Green or blue painters tape and NOT yellow/brown paper tape is what you want.
Get the mock up done then worry about paint. This includes all your parts in hand and whatever electronics your still looking to use.
Dont do that sanding in your living area. Regardless of a respirator its all now all over your place when the respirator is not used for day to day life. Its not just your health but your roommates as well.
Ok, should I try to keep most of the main components separate until priming and painting?
I've been really busy working so I havn't had a chance to update the status. Here is a picture from a few days ago. Its a general idea of what the final thing will look like, sans ammo canister.
The barrel has been attached to help construction, but the stock is still separate. The PVC and plastic stock have been sanded down so that primer will stick to it. The edges of the detail panel has been beveled with glaze. I'll probably be priming tonight.
Without knowing your final paint scheme I cant suggest full build vs partial for paint and primer. If the acrylic or barrel is to be a different color than the MDF, then it would be easier and more time effective to paint them separately.
As for your finalized surface and greeblie dressing, remember function over layers upon layers of junk. This is where sci-fi designs go wrong. Less is more when it comes to functionality. You dont see anything unrelated to function on a bare military rifle.
To add something to your build, consider a simple and fitting display stand. You can possibly use a length of 4" PVC pipe with grooves or sections cut out ad light it from the bottom. Not super bright light but ambient lighting. Just a simple dollar store flashlight will work. Its just to hold the prop for display. Find closet to center balance on your prop and make that the point it sits inside the cut out on the PVC pipe. Please avoid the temptation of of the horrid steel grate or allen head screws or rivets. If your prop doesnt have these, neither should anything related to it.
Thanks. I actually didn't get to prime today. I was working so late that I didnt realize I attached the barrel 2 degrees skewed to the left. So I spent a good hour getting it off. I honestly didn't plan this as well as I should have. I thought I did all the homework and research, but it was like designing a puzzle, building the pieces, and solving it all at the same time.
I'm hoping to get it primed tomorrow, and I'll try to get my friend to send me the paint schemes before then.
Curious, but when trying to center a barrel between 2 pieces of wood, do you just eyeball it?
Here is a rough idea of what we are thinking of for the paint scheme. Remove the orange band on the barrel however.
Last edited by DukeNukem117; Dec 9, 2011 at 5:00 AM.
To get your barrel centered you can measure distances and use a dowel or set screw to get it in place.
Im glad you posted that progress picture. Where you have the wood box propping it up, thats where the 4" piece of PVC pipe would come into play as a display stand. Avoid clear acrylic or such and make it match the gun itself as if its made for it.
To my eye your going to need more black color on the top and or rear to even out the black barrel. For example on the rear area, where the tape is crossing that dot, maybe add some fine grate type material or use some screen to paint a pattern over it.
Where you have dots, whats the purpose? I assume they would be for assembly so it would have some form of nut/bolt or other attaching item inside. If you have an aircraft surplus near you you can pick up some wicked misc bits to place in those holes. Its added detail and fits the design. I have a small box full of this stuff if you want to make the drive from Long Beach to the LAX area. PM me for info if so.
I have some hex nuts that I want to insert into them after priming. I think I might paint them black before insertion. This is assuming the thick primer I have doesnt just fill them up completely.
I'm not sure I'll make a display panel just yet, as I think we turn these in individually. Though whenever I get it back, I think I will make something for display.
The color scheme is tentative. The primer I have is made by valspar and is very thick and white, which would probably work for the white base. I also have some car paint called "orion silver", which might be good to paint underneath certain parts so I can chip away it later during weathering.
My friend is also going to come over tuesday to help me weather. He says I should look into inserting some kitbash details into that cut-out panel in the main body. I think he is referring to "greeblies" by rpf lingo.
Any suggestions on how I should "mount" the gun for even spraying?
For paint/primer either hang it by wire or do one side at a time. Its pending your location.
Hmmm, its a pretty heavy gun to hang by wire. I would probably need to support it at two points. Do I just go back and paint/prime over the wire area after the rest are dry?
whatever works. You could even place it on a milk crate. Whatever works to get it propped up for an even coat. Dont over think it. I paint and primer most things in my hand with a plastic baggie wrapped around my hand or on top of a cardboard box. The thinner the paint the faster it dries and most items do not need a thick coat.
Ya, I'm probably overthinking this.
Long day working on this, so here is a little progress update:
I've primed it and is now wet-sanding it with 400grit. The primer I used is actually very white, so I think I might just leave that as the white basecoat parts.
However, I have encountered a few problems. Alot of the edges are being taken off to the material during sanding. I'm not sure if I should reprime those parts, are leave them be for weathering. I don't really know how to weather, so I don't know if I need those areas primed or not if I plan to give it the "scraped edges" look.
Another thing I noticed is that I don't have a middle parting line on the top and bottom. I can't believe I forgot this. I should have rounded the edges a bit before gluing them together, but crappy planning on my part I guess. I'm going to need to apply a thicker layer of primer on those parts, because the MDF is really absorbing the stuff. Should I try to carve a parting line out with an x-acto or dremel before or after I apply more primer?
I hope to paint the basecoat on Monday, spend tuesday weathering, and spray clear on wednesday to turn in thursday afternoon. We shall see...
The ends or cuts on MDF is porous so it will never match the smoothed area of the acrylic or the top layer of the MDF. You can use bondo or seal it with some paint, then sand, primer and keep going. Definitely smooth the area down though. Nothings worse then doing all that leg work only to cheapen out on the finish coat.
Weathering can be simple or layered. You can do a wash with water based acrylics (the little dollar bottles of paint at Michaels) or layers of paint in various techniques. For a heavy repainted and scarred look you can use latex or Vaseline on some areas then paint over it, remove the latex or Vaseline and do it again for another layer.... Find the look you want then go from there. The layered paint with latex or Vaseline is what you would use to get a Boba Fett helmet look.
More simple methods are:
a paint pen to highlight wear areas as seen on the pistol on the bottom:
water based acrylics are easy and quick to wear and if you mess up, wash it off and start again:
I call this dry ragging where you take some spray paint applied to a cotton rag, rub it into the rag and then onto the surface your wanting to weather. It works very well if the base layer of paint is heavier than the dry rag color. The dry rag color reactivates the upper most top layer of the base coat and works itself into that layer adding depth.
Oil based stains, pretty advanced, need an airbrush, patience and some skillz. This involves advanced thought in color depth and how said colors affect each other when layered.
A combo of most of the above.
I like to think my brash, impulsive, and sometimes downright reckless nature gives me a "bad-boy" appeal to the ladies.
But right now I just feel like a gigantic *******.
In a moment of "I wonder what will happen..." I decided to try to use a brush to apply a thick coat of primer over the exposed MDF. It did not go well...
Now I'm not sure if I should try to sand everything flat again, or just 60 grit everything, take it to the spray booth, and use the gun to start all over.
I'm going to start sanding as soon as it dries to see what happens, but yeesh, what was I thinking?
Ok, I think I can do this. I'll wait until it dries overnight, then starts wet sanding 400grit with a foam block. It'll probably flatten out most of the surfaces, but It'll probably wear out the edges since I'm short on time and I can't be too precise.
I'll use a paint pen to cover up the edges as wear and tear, then clear it. The clear I have on hand is a 2 part automobile clear that takes a day to dry. I've heard that certain clears can dry within an hour. Where would I get the paint pen? And is there a faster drying off the shelf clear I can do at home?
Ok, I've sanded alot off the top and middle part. The bottom is kind of messy, so I'm going to strip all the primer off with low grit sandpaper, then mask all the parts I am satisfied with, flip the gun upside down on a spray stand, and spray gun the bottom again for even coverage.
Last edited by DukeNukem117; Dec 12, 2011 at 11:22 AM.
Why are you even attempting that work with clear coating? Unless your surface is completely smooth and every edge, corner and line is flush and sealed, its only going to enhance and expose any and every flaw on a super enhanced level.
Get ride of those primer brush strokes, paint it with rattle cans, smooth the surface, then rattle can clear coat it. You can use some of the built up with primer areas as weathering if need be. Maybe its an item that was found in a wreck or battle field now as opposed to in a shop or ready to use.
You can get paint pens at Michaels or crafts related stores but if your going the fancy time consuming clear coat it probaly wont work anyways. The clear coat probly wont react well to the paint pen.
Ya, I met with my teacher today and he's not requiring us to go all out 2 part expensive clear coating anymore. Given most people's progress, he just wants something painted in the end. Its been rather confusing trying to meet the course requirements while doing this, which is probably why I've been doing things so excessively complicated.
I sanded off the blotches and re-primed it. I'm going to sand and paint tomorrow, weather wednesday, and rattle can clear coat it. Is there a particular brand you would recommend for this?
as far as brands in rattle cans, keep them all the same. If your using Krylon stay with it. What you want is a fine spray and not rain drop clumps for the clear coat if your insistent on using a clear coat. Most rattle can spray paints dont need a clear coat. Keep in mind again any weathering you do will be affected by the clear coat. It will be visually off setting to clear coat over weathering and weathering over it may end up looking like a cheap toy.
Since I seem to think you want a gloss finish, off set it with some satin finish areas. Id suggest if your going with the color scheme shown earlier, gloss white with satin black, gray and orange. It will add depth and character while keeping it from looking like a toy. In the end a prop only need follow the five foot rule. If it looks good from five feet away, its done its job.
What I personally would use, all Krylon: gloss white, satin gray, satin or OSHA orange, satin black. Satin can also be "semi flat". No clear coat. Use a hair dryer to help speed up the paint sure. Let it cool then do some simple water based acrylic wash's with raw umber, plum purple, graphite gray and some color of antique white or parchment.
Keep in mind about demasking your tape and using green/blue painters tape. Demask it by pulling lengths off the roll and applying it to your shirt or pants. This will remove some of the aggressive stickiness so there is less chance of the tape biting into your painted surface and pulling it up. Pretty much any aggressive tape on that acrylic surface will pull up paint and primer. Dont yank the tape off, pull it at an angle slowly when removing.
if your masking a simple line, only allow a bare minimum of tape to touch the surface with the rest being paper or plastic. In other words if your tape is 1" wide, allow no more than 1/4" of it to touch the surface. This way if the paint/primer does pull up, its not on a grand scale and will be easier to repair. That thick primer may come back to peel greatly if forced so be careful.
Thanks for the info. Unfortunately this is where my curriculum differs. My teacher grades from 5 inches away. I will also be submitting this as part of my portfolio next year to get into upper division, and the panel of judges all grade from 5 inches away.
I also asked around about the clear coat issue, and it seems like I will have to use the fancy stuff with a flattening agent. It offers better protection for the finish, as this thing will probably be handled alot between now and portfolio. But I've decided to hold off on clear coating until winter break. I just need something presentable by thursday, so whatever weathering techniques I use will only need to be durable enough for me to handle for about a day.
And really, thanks for all your help throughout this whole thing.
I strongly suggest water based acrylics for the weathering. Being your first time, its an easy do over. Attempting to weather with paint is a one shot deal.
Post some pics when your done.
It was a long long night, and I havn't had time to mirror it for the other side yet. I'm going to redesign the stock, so that isnt included either. The trigger is completely dead now too. Though overall, the weathering turned out pretty well. My friend brought his warhammer enamel, and I bought a cheap set of acrylics. The edges were done with a sharpie fine point paint and a bit of dry brushing. The greeblies were a mishmash of lego pieces, plumbing parts, and earbuds. I still have alot of work left to do on the other side, and I need to re-design and fabricate the stock. I'm taking a CNC class next semester, so that'll be my first project. We havn't painted the stripes yet either. But overall, I'm pretty happy how it turned out, and I'm brainstorming about my next project already. Thanks for your help.
dont be afraid to use orange tape for the stripes. The top section needs something to pull it apart from the rest of the gun. Maybe grab a sheet of window screen and use it as a masking shield and lightly dust the gray color over that area. Try it on a sheet of cardboard by just laying the screen flat and from about two feet away lightly spray the color. Its simple and quick.