Han Solo In Carbonite prop… going under cover...

Discussion in 'Star Wars Costumes and Props' started by darthchromer, Nov 22, 2011.

  1. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    Hi friends. As some of you know, I’ve been searching for an Illusive Concepts Han Solo in Carbonite 1:1 prop to strip the paint from for sometime now. Jeff “Gotmagic” on the Yahoo Han in Carbonite builder forum, took me up on my offer. He sent me his #345 Illusive Concept prop with the body and carbonite section already cut out of the box. He is going to build a more accurate cabinet and side panels. I will strip down his cast and repair the defects and remove detail added by IC to bring it back as close as possible to the screen used original.

    I will be doing a paint strip down and removal of all the top and base coats IC applied, and get down to the original as cast details which were buried under all the applications of paint.

    I will be examining the Illusive Concepts casting and will try to answer the questions of what was original and what, if any, modifications were made to it after it was cast by comparing it to original photos of the movie prop. I will be looking forward to getting feed back and advice from some of the very knowledgeable HIC experts out there.

    A small bit of history on the IC prop.
    This was a 1:1 prop produced in 1997 by Illusive Concepts at a run production of 2500 pieces, but that number was never achieved. I have heard due to the company going out of business. The body and carbonite section of the cast was taken directly from an original movie prop. The surrounding box frame and eight side panels were custom made by them. There were supposedly modifications made to the hair, face and hands possibly due to damage and/or to help with ease of molding such a large amount of units.

    So, lets get started...
    One thing I noticed when I first unpacked it is that these props weren't made flimsy. Jeff had cut the body out of the frame before shipping it off. We have 1/2 to 3/4" thick fiber glass here, nice and strong.

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    One thing that I was disappointed with was the quality of this low number cast. I knew there were problems with parts of it from the pictures Jeff initially sent me but this project is turning from just a strip down and minor repair to a full on resculpt of the face and hands...cool, I get to re-sculpt my favorite prop? That'll work too :)






    .
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2017
  2. encased

    encased Well-Known Member

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    Put up some really good pics of HIS right hand and I'll find some ggod ones to show how they massacred it for breakage. Later #'s were also shrunken down another 5% due to another casting of the reworked hands which were the main problem in shipping since they packed them so poorly.

    Does this one have a glossy coat on it or is it rough to the touch? That will tell you what generation it is.
     
  3. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    This one has a gloss coat applied. The right hand, along with the face and some of the fingers of left hand were messed up pretty bad when they applied the initial gel coat so the detail, IE wrinkles and structure mainly in the right hand were wiped out. They also tried to fix it with Bondo.

    I will show detail shots when I get a chance to do my next post.
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2011
  4. modeljag

    modeljag Active Member

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    Looking forward to the progress!
     
  5. xenocon

    xenocon New Member

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    Thanks for the link on the HIC yahoogroups forum. I'm looking forward to seeing the results.
     
  6. SC1138

    SC1138 New Member

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    Hey guys. Im fairly new to the RPF, at least when it comes to posting messages. Since I began collecting over 12 years ago the IC HIC was something I never dreamed I would own. Well, I was able to get my hands on one last weekend at auction for what I believe was a great price. It's in great shape, but also evident that there are some problems that need correcting; however, I knew I would be able to find some guidance on these forums. Anyways, I have a later edition, I believe #938 but not positive. Once I get the courage I will be attempting to make improvements and look forward to using this thread for direction. If for any reason reference photos are needed from a "later model" IC HIC, I'd be more than willing to post some. I'm in no way an expert when it comes to a film accurate HIC so I'm really looking forward to your findings and progress!
     
  7. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    Congrats on the purchase of your HIC. I definitely would like this thread to be a group effort and any pic's you want to show, from your IC's, as we progress, are very welcome. There were a ton of these props made and the problems with this one is hopefully not the rule but the exception. I'll have some more shots coming soon.
     
  8. DS Operative

    DS Operative Well-Known Member

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    This is going to be a fun one to watch. Will copies be made available in the JY when completed?
     
  9. antwayne

    antwayne Well-Known Member

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    If that one is like mine, the right pinky will look like it is made of bondo. I have always wanted to see what was under this thick gloss. Thanks for taking this on.
     
  10. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    Finally have some time to post. Here are some of the problem areas on this particular cast.

    The face had a lot of issues, you can see the mottled rough surface and the stepping or ridging around the lips, nose, cheek, toes and forehead.


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    Same with the left toe.

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    Two of the right hand fingers were broken off at one time and repaired. This may have been in the mold itself. We will see after it's stripped.

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    Right hand was real bad, the pitting in the fingers.
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    The palm in the right hand was the worst area. You can tell that the palm wrinkles are wrong and I suspect was repaired with bondo at the factory to save this casting. We will know more when I strip off the paint.

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    They did not even bother to fix the lower finger area, YIKES!
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    More pictures to come...
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2012
  11. encased

    encased Well-Known Member

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    Wow. That is horrific. I'm afraid you'll probably find it all in the casting and not in the paint. This one is much worse than the one I had and sent back, and that one was not worth the money with all the flaws.

    I can't get over all the holes in this one. And that hand. Good grief.
     
  12. antwayne

    antwayne Well-Known Member

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    I have wondered if the number on the plaque actually identifies the order these were pulled from the mold. My #499 doesn't have quite that many quality control issues with the right hand and presumably was pulled after your 345. My gloss does seem much heavier than yours too. Thanks for the updates. Let me know if you want any specific photos of mine.
     
  13. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    Antwayne, I don't think it's a matter of the mold being deteriorated, I believe that they either had a gel coat cure problem, maybe an equipment failure or the guy that showed up to work that day had one cerveza to many the night before and just mixed the material and hardeners wrong. Who knows. The next one they pulled might have been perfect. I think this was operator error.

    I'm not counting out the fact that it could have been the mold itself though. I don't know how many mold negatives they had, I would assume they had more than one for the numbers they were going to produce. This one may have been a bad negative and was tossed shortly after.
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2011
  14. GF

    GF Sr Member

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    I actually have a original HIC from Illusive which I completely stripped down, it had a very thick clearcoat, I will apply a new paintjob and make a new box for it. I will take some photos which might help your fixes, I applied primer to see details. Alot of details were lost under that superthick base/clearcoat paintjob, basically whoever buys Illusive recasts without being stripped first the copies will have way less details which are buried under that thick clearcoat.

    GFollano
     
  15. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    Exactly why I'm doing the strip down GF :thumbsup Hopefully what you had underneath your paint was better than what I have. Most all the body and cabonite was cast in real good shape. Just the most important details were smugged on this one. :unsure
     
  16. IeatherfaceIX

    IeatherfaceIX Active Member

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    Id love to have one of those. What a piece!

    Michael
     
  17. GF

    GF Sr Member

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    Here are a few photos of mine stripped with a light coat of primer, one of the finger tip has a small chip, easy fix since it's on the plain area of the finger tip not the nail section.

    GFollano
     
  18. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    GF, any close up shots of the mouth?
     
  19. Room8

    Room8 Well-Known Member

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    Interesting. Like Antwayne, I don't have nearly as many issues and mine is #832.
     
  20. Captain Wow

    Captain Wow New Member

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    I just purchased a front panel on ebay a month ago, also just purchased a side panel that I will be making 7 copies from and I also have the water jet cut box. All I need now are the pieces for the side panels. Im glad you have this post on here as I am about to strip my front section as well. Good thing I worked in a body shop 18 years ago. Does anyone know where I can find the sidepanel Greeblee parts?

    Thanks
     
  21. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    CW, I make all the parts necessary for the panels, see my threads in the Junk Yard.

    http://www.therpf.com/f13/han-carbonite-panels-greeblees-99552/

    http://www.therpf.com/f13/han-carbonite-hero-panel-electronics-kit-117629/
     
  22. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    Well, back for another update. I've started the strip down. I wanted to see what was going on with the hand first. You can see the bondo that was used to try and make this one "sellable".


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    Close shot of the hand repair.
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    Stripped
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    It very difficult to see the details in the black so I sprayed a light coat of silver on the hand after I cleaned all the bondo out. We get a good look at the problem cast that was under the patch work. The main structure of the hand and original wrinkles were still there. This will be a great guide when I start to sculpt the details back in.
    [​IMG]


    75% stripped down to the black gel coat.
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    Face stripped and silver applied for visuals. lots of issues here unfortunately. This will require most of the face to be re sculpted.
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    I pulled a big chunk of bodo out from inside his lower lip, like a big wad of chew. Curious why they filled in this area with bondo.
    [​IMG]

    Next, the re sculpting begins!
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2012
  23. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    BTW, DS Yes I will be making a mold when finished before I send this back to the owner so I can have one for myself. I MAY do a very limited run in the Junk yard but I just don't have the time it takes to pump these out in mass like Lonestar. He would be the man for IC copies.

    Sculpting the left side face.
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    Starting the rt side face.
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    Smoothing in the wrinkles on the rt hand.
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    Last edited: Sep 19, 2012
  24. antwayne

    antwayne Well-Known Member

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    Any updates?
     
  25. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    Antwayne, I'll have some pic's soon (work has kept me extremely busy)

    I have the entire piece stripped now. I have been working on the right hand when I can, cutting back all the extra carbonite IC added to the back and reworking the fingers more. I'm pretty close to being done with the resculpting for the body. I will tackle the carbonite edges around the complete perimeter next, where IC had spliced the seam to the box.
     
  26. LDR

    LDR Sr Member

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    Nice project Glen.

    The owner has got some balls to cut up an IC HIC! They arent cheap.

    Lewis
     
  27. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    Thanks Lewis, Yeah I know, but for the betterment of the rework it should be well worth it. I'm glad Jeff trusted me to do this work for him.

    I was going to start back on it this week but, then your water main breaks and well, 3 days of digging and you realize your not in your 20's anymore can put a world of hurt on your body. :facepalm Too much do it yourselfer in me I guess. I'll jump back in next week.
     
  28. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    I was finally able to jump back on this project. I actually finished the restoration of it. It was quite more than I expected, but was really fun redoing the details. I have done a few projects in the past and I definitely don't consider myself in the ranks of most of the sculptors here in the RPF. I hope I did this prop justice. If there is anything you guys see that I missed please let me know. I will be ordering the materials to make a mold of this so I can send the original back to Jeff. There will be time to make changes/adjustments. I'm sure I'll find something.

    BEFORE and...
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    AFTER
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    Last edited: Sep 20, 2012
  29. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    Left hand repair was not as bad as the right hand. There was just a little re-sculpt to the top palm and lower inner fingers.

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    I removed the extra material behind the fingers that Illusive Concepts added to help them with the demold process. Trying to take it back as close to original as possible.
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    Last edited: Sep 19, 2012
  30. Ashiva

    Ashiva Member

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    Have to say I love the rework.. I'm not sure if it's just me or if it was like that with the original screen used prop, but something just looks weird with the right thumb and pinky to me.
     
  31. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    True, I may have to revisit those a bit. But the original is pretty rough there. It's a dilemma I found a lot, redoing this prop. Do I make it better than it was, or keep it closer to original? here is a pic that Loanstar had posted of the original.:thumbsup
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    Another before and
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    after.
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    I smoothed out the left and right edges of the carbonite to get it back to original. When IC spliced the body/carbonite area to their frame they sloppily roughed in the seam area. On the original prop the carbonite "poured in plaster area" never touched the frame.
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    This is interesting, the feet on the IC differ from the one's on the tour block.
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    Stripping this prop sure brought out some great fine detail that will transfer to the castings.
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    I had reshaped the teeth a few times but it looked like Han had dentures so I pretty much left them alone
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    Harrison's scar
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    Last edited: Apr 18, 2013
  32. vaderdarth

    vaderdarth Master Member

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    Very nice work!!!
     
  33. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    Thank you very much VaderD! I already see a couple of things on the face I'm going to fix, now that I am looking at my pic's I posted a little closer. lol
     
  34. fire10

    fire10 New Member

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    This is an amazing thread, love seeing the prop stripped down.
    Keep posting pics,
    Cheers Fire10
     
  35. Mxlplx

    Mxlplx Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    OMG! I so want one of these!
     
  36. king of spades

    king of spades Member

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  37. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    Thanks Guys!
     
  38. mummycop

    mummycop New Member

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    What are you using to strip it?
     
  39. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    I used "Aircraft Fiberglass Paint Remover" Home stores may have it. Automotive paint stores like PPG or Dupont carry it for sure. It's not too aggressive and wont hurt the gel coat.
     
  40. SofaKing01

    SofaKing01 Master Member

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    Its the attention to details... Adding the scar... Beautiful work! :)

    The drips out of the mouth are actually VERY VERY creepy looking...
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2012
  41. wariwen

    wariwen New Member

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    that is looking really great. This is like my unicorn prop if I had room for it I would have already made it work but hopefully soon I will have a HIC of my own. Again grreat job so far
     
  42. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    Thanks Sofaking, The scar was already there though. This was a licensed prop that was molded from an original LFL prop. So that's Harrison's face. It was too bad I had to rework so much of it. You'll have to do one after you finish that sweet Falcon cockpit. :thumbsup
     
  43. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    Thanks Wariwen, it definitely takes up some real estate but well worth it if you ask me.
     
  44. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    I guess this will be the last installment for this thread. I have finished the restoration and completed my mold. The IC cast is safe back with the original owner on the other side of the country. Big thank you to Jeff for trusting me with his IC casting, it took a leap of faith for sure :) I now have a mold to make my own copy from.


    I did finesse the left hand a bit more, smoothed it out and added some knuckle wrinkles.
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    Another angle of the face.
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    Applying the silicone for the mold
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    Finished!!!!!
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    I wanted to show you guys why I needed to strip this casting down to the bare fiberglass cast before I made my mold. This is a comparison of a cast I have of a face I got on ebay years ago from a non stripped IC, which is real nice, and a cast I made of the striped version. These are good shots of the top of the hair to see what kind of detail was unearthed by removing all that paint.

    Unstripped
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    Stripped
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    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012
  45. MAKE BELIEVE

    MAKE BELIEVE Sr Member

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    That's a hell of work! Impressive. Fantastic job. Congrats
    Besides the main re-work job I guess the attention to the small details makes all the difference. Love seeing the work's evolution - thanks for the thread
     
  46. TheShinyOne

    TheShinyOne Well-Known Member

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    Any chance of getting a pic with the reworked frame/case? I know the owner was working on that (stated in your OP), I am very curious!
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012
  47. clancampbell

    clancampbell Sr Member

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    Incredible work!

    Rich
     
  48. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    Thanks guys. I know Jeff is working on the block. I am not sure when he will finish it but I'll ask him to share when he's done.

     
  49. t1made

    t1made Active Member

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    Attention to detail is superb, great work/re-work.
     
  50. darthchromer

    darthchromer Active Member

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    A late thanks T1! :)
     

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