My Hasbro Hero X-wing Solution And Build

Discussion in 'General Modeling' started by niart17, Jul 17, 2015.

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  1. niart17

    niart17 Active Member

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    Hi everyone. After seeing all the great X-wing builds and Hasbro conversions I ran out and found one of the Hero X-wings at Walmart. Upon more reading and after actually handling the plastic, I set out to find an easier way of tackling this thing since apparently most glues and paints are difficult to use on it. If only it were made of styrene...So that's when it hit me. It could be vacuformed and hopefully easier to deal with. I understand I'll be adding slightly to the overall size by the thickness of the plastic, but I'm not after a perfect studio scale model, just a good representation of an X-wing that may incorporate elements from all forms of the ships. In other words I want to add as many of the details that coexist between the different shooting props and pick my preferred details for the ones that conflict with each other.

    The other problem is my vacuum forming table is too small to form the whole length so I had to hack the toy up into 3 major sections. (sorry, please don't hate me collectors) That does add a challenge of getting all the parts to line back up when I put it all together, but hey, it's going to be a great learning experience. And now I can use all the traditional plastic modeling materials with ease and do things like add the torpedo tubes, re-scribe panels lines as needed and make them crisper and add a full cockpit. I am a slow builder so please be patient with me. If all else fails perhaps I will learn a lot from you guys and just maybe give a few ideas back.

    Here are a few pics of my early progress. Sorry the quality isn't all that great, I had to use my phone.

    The nose upper and lower sections on the table. The nose gear well was eventually filled with modeling clay before forming as well as clay to fill the inside to help stop deflection under vacuum.

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    Formed front fuse parts loosely fitted together. I cut the nose off in order to put a better fuse to nose joint. I need to clean that up a lot and I still need to add the tapered transition step between the halves (please forgive me if I butcher the names of the X-wing areas, I'm just learning about them)

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    Cockpit area on table and then the formed part. Was getting a pretty good pull on these parts. This part was actually only my 3rd part to ever vacuum form so I'm learning.

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    Anyway, thanks for looking. I am definitely open to comments, critiques and especially suggestions. I know this won't be the best X-wing build but it should be fun.

    Thanks,
    Bill
     
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  2. Junk Pilot

    Junk Pilot Sr Member

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    Is there any news on this front at all, niart17?
     
  3. Miranda Tempest

    Miranda Tempest Active Member

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    Interesting...did you lose panel line details on the Vac-formed piece?
     
  4. rbeach84

    rbeach84 Sr Member

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    Since he is 'male-molding', the panel line detail will be reduced or even eliminated on the exterior - though probably will be quite crisp in the inside of the parts!

    R / Robert
     
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  5. Miranda Tempest

    Miranda Tempest Active Member

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    I think you're right there, every time I Vac-form some thing it takes away a lot of detail.

    Vac- forming this one would almost have to rebuild all the panels using very thin poly-styrene.
     
  6. Miranda Tempest

    Miranda Tempest Active Member

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    Just as a suggestion niart17,

    if you put very tiny holes though the valleys of the panel lines the Vacuum form could possibly pull more pressure through
    those tiny holes and make the panel line detail just a little more sharp.
     
  7. rbeach84

    rbeach84 Sr Member

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    The only way to replicate the original more faithfully is to create female molds. Basically, you would need to create molds by taking an external cast of the part, flipping it and then vac-forming in the resulting cavity. In essence, the demo'ed male moldings are female captures of the original parts, just not in a material suitable for using as female molds (too thin, styrene itself so it would melt, etc. etc,...) Of course, female molds must be rigid and heat resistant (ceramic, epoxy, metal or fiberglass) plus have tiny vents (pinholes) to allow the air to be vacuumed out of the cavity, but that is the gist of it. Certainly a more involved process but at least you end up with something the same size as the original part...and with surface detail.

    A core precept of male vacs is that you (the modeler) then must apply your surface detailing separately as the process doesn't support direct transfer during the molding. Also, you have to have an undersized master form to allow for the thickness of the plastic sheet being formed (as already noted...)

    R/ Robert
     
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  8. niart17

    niart17 Active Member

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    Hey guys. Sorry I've been outta the pocket around here for a while and missed the comments. Thanks for looking in. I haven't done much more to this other than adding a little bit of internal support on the forward section to help make the upper to lower step a little easier to line up. The toy doesn't quite have the step pronounced correctly so I'm trying to work on getting a little closer.

    As for panel lines, yes they are quite a bit softer than the original toy. But really the toy's lines are pretty soft to begin with so I am planning on filling the whole surface in and re-scribing it all. The other issue was trying to vac the rear fuse section. I know I'm going to have to cut out the droid trench and rebuild all that detail, but getting a good pull from the overall section has been challenging to say the least. I may just make up the whole rear fuse section with sheet plastic and not worry about forming it. Not sure. Right now I have a lot of projects going that need attention too so I'll likely be a while before I get back on this. It's still a fun learning experience.

    Thanks again for commenting and please, any suggestions are definitely welcome....even if I take too long getting back.

    Bill
     

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