Niennumb1's HIC Han in Carbonite Build Progress - (pics)


Master Member
Hello! Well this is yet another thread on a HIC build. I started this back in August and has been a very slow process due to kids and time, BUT I'm at a point where I'm seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. The panels are about done, and the box is assembled and front facing is getting there.

I wanted to get some opinions on what you think here. I have been looking at photos, but is hard to nail the exact look all around of the stuff around Han Solo. I have been using mixed adhesives... Wood filler being the more sooth coating to go over everything, but I didn't know just how thick all this junk needed to be until I started seeing how little it was filling up. This process has literally taken weeks due to extensive drying times. What I finally decided to do is put a basic primer coat over my work to just see where I'm at because it was getting to the point to where I just couldn't see what the heck I was doing anymore (You'll see in one of the pictures).

There's over 105 images I have taken during this project and will have a full gallery up at some point, but right now I just want to aim on getting this done. I have some critique notes of my own and want to know if you agree, or am I being too hard on myself. Honest constructive advice would be appreciated. I know this isn't going to end up 100% accurate, but I am aiming for something I can be proud of.

(click images for larger view):

Stormrider rubber casting. That's a lot of stuff to fill around....

This is a mix of cove base adhesive which I felt was good to blend in with the rubber and then used layers of wood glue. After a while I couldn't see my work well anymore.

Primer began to finally show my work

I wanted to look at light and shading behavior


Initial thoughts are that the top/left needs some more filled in. left area needs to be less exaggerated/rough looking by adding some wood glue to smooth it; Right side could use a bit more oomf, but is close.

An obvious staple will be covered over; The are overall is close; A bit more fill near the frame lip across from the hand

A little boring; This could use a few splotches of wood glue/globby texturing

The light isn't catching some of the work put in down here and is more detailed than it appears with the flat primer; Based on the photograph comparisons, looks like they didn't do a ton of details down there and should probably keep additions minimal since the gunmetal paint and black will brink those details out later; Maybe a bit more build-out rougher detail around the feet.

Thanks for looking, your time, and your thoughts.
Last edited:
Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Help - Niennumb1's build (pics)

Hi Sergio
I have my own HIC on the bench and of what I see on the pics you did a great job on this.
Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Help - Niennumb1's build (pics)

It's looking good so far! I struggled with various filler materials as well. I used a gallon and a half of glue before I decided to cover up the whole thing with Bondo instead. I know what you mean about covering it with primer to see where you are. All those swirls and patterns become overwhelming. I ended up with a pattern I'm happy with although it's much busier looking than the original prop. This is such a rewarding build that I don't think you can really go wrong. Whatever carbonite pattern you end up with is what makes your prop unique.

Yours is looking great and I'll definitely be following your progress.
Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Help - Niennumb1's build (pics)

New spray from Home Depot! I was about to buy the nickel color, but then I saw these big NEW stickers next to a Rustoleum color called WEATHERED STEEL. I took a picture side-by-side to the nickel. It's very close in tint, but what I really like is that it's weathered-looking! It's a smooth finish and not hammered. I decided to buy it and take a leap of faith. Each can is over $7, but I like that it's not too gleaming looking like the nickel appears.... I will post pictures when I start using it, but for now here's a couple pics:

Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Progress - my build (pics)

I love Rust-Oleum! They have the coolest colors. Every time I go to Home Depot, I find myself in the spray paint isle telling myself not to buy more.
Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Progress - my build (pics)

Nice! It looks good with a flat finish, but have you considered semi-gloss finish? I think that'll bring out more depth & detail.
Either way, it looks good. :) I need to get off my butt and start mine... only had it for a year!! :lol
Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Progress - my build (pics)

Yeah I plan to clearcoat it after the painting is done. There wasn't any other finish types of rustoleum other than the satin and flat, unless I wanted to almost chrome or a hammered finish.

And don't feel bad on how ling you've had your pieces. I started getting pieces back in 2011 waiting til when I had a bigger house to finally tackle this. It's been a VERY long wait.
Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Progress - my build (pics)

I have tons of pics, but haven't been posting them here. I will have to make an online album so everyone can see all the things that were done to get to this point.

So I DON'T have this done yet. This is the first partial coating of the metallic paint I took a leap of faith on, and I have to say, I may not have to do any of that black dry-brush after seeing what look this paint produces.

On the side frame It's going to come down to putting lighter coats to give less distressing of a look, but as far as the main panel with Han and the texturing, I don't know if i'm even going to need to do anything to it when i'm done with all my coats of paint.

I've noticed any of the plain metallics like silver or nickel have a much more even refraction of light off the surfaces you paint on, which always seems to make whatever you are trying to do overbearing when you are shooting for a weathered look, which is where you'd put that dray brushing to take away some of that detail lost from the spraying. This spray paint goes on with the metallic refractive properties unevenly, giving a more authentic look and I wasn't expecting it to retain/enhance the details that well.

The Rustoleum Weathered Steel did a fabulous job not only filling the trouble spots, but gave instant depth to the details and it doesn't at all look like a flat plain silver. This REALLY looks like how I would expect the carbonite to look in-person. Not too bright or too dark. I'm VERY happy with how this first shot coating went.

This is the before with gray primer:

And a couple first pics of the Rustoleum Weathered Steel spray paint:



As I was saying about the frame, you can see some extra distressing appearance on the side. this just happened in that one spot from getting a little closer than I should have. It didn't goop up at all, but it behaves relative to how far or close you hold it. Seriously though.... this spray paint is awesome!
Last edited:
Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Progress - my build (pics)

A post from a previous person reminded me that I haven't been good at all in updated my own thread on my HIC progress. I haven't gotten too much farther, but I went back and filled some spots that were bugging me and re-primed those and now on my 3rd pass of spray painting.

Here's a few pix:

This has a bunch of primer around the top area and sides after being unhappy with there being too much detail and toned it down some.


1st paintover layer

I decided I am definitely going to be going over it with some black paint to enhance the weathering spots and not just using the weathered steel spray.

My HIC on a custom dolly rig I set up to wheel it outside to paint. That spray stinks things up like no other paint, so I needed a way to minimize the fumes indoors. Thankfully we've had dry days these past couple weeks.


I think probably one more coat and then will get into the dry brush black paint part of the build.
Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Progress - my build (pics)

I did some weathering and this is just a first pass so far.

I started by putting a fairly diluted layer of black acrylic paint over the front inner frame.



Next after it dried I took a damp microfiber cloth and started rubbing off the black, leaving mainly the nooks and crannies showing the black to bring out some of the details and adding more dimension to Han. It's subtle, but in person made a big difference.



Next I'll be going over some spots with a bit more of the black, but more near the face since I didn't do that area much on the 1st pass. After that will try some brown as well to add another level of weathering to the block, but not as much like I did with the black.
Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Progress - my build (pics)

A little acrylic wash adds so much. It's subtle, but it helps your eye buy the illusion. Great work!
Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Progress - my build (pics)

Sorry it's been so long since updating, everyone!

I still have my wash painting to do more of, but wanted to show that I was able to get help getting this sucker up into my media room and mounted on the wall. I test-ran my 2 electronics panels which you can see here:

If you are wearing headphones you might be hearing a low-frequency hum. I added a sound effect inside the cabinet that has a running loop for a subtle idle sound to kinda throw in an extra realism to it. There's also little tickety sounds, but you can't hear it in the video clip.

Everything is coming along well. I will be getting the rest of the panels and light in this week and hope to have more to share very soon!

Oh and here's the mount I made:

(The pic blows out the details in the lighting, sorry)


I over-did it and mounted 2 sets of 500lb-rated shelf brackets with stoppers so that the cabinet won't slide off. There's a 2x4 board bolted into the studs as well. Then I mounted the frame on the cabinet supports on back and wired stuff from behind. The plug outlet will be completely hidden, so all the inner workings of the sounds and lights will be concealed with a remote on/off switch on the wall.

Last edited by a moderator:
Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Progress - my build (pics)

I should have some pictures of the back of my carbonite with sound installation later. I had to take down the cabinet tonight because I need to offset the balance slightly with the lines just messing with the actual leveling vs. how it looks lined up to the ceiling. It plays with my eyes like it's crooked, but no one else seems to see it, but me.

Anyway... I should have almost everything installed VERY soon. SOOO CLOSE now.
Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Progress - my build (pics)

The mounting looks secure and the hidden plug is a good tough. I'm not sure what I will do with mine after Halloween. It might get mounted in the basement. I hoping I can come up with a way to keep mine secure at a Halloween party without permanent damage or additions to the wall.
Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Progress - my build (pics)

At about 4am I completed the setup of the mounting with main overhead light. There's some little things I want to do with it still, but nothing that would really show up on camera to tell a difference in the thread.

Forgive the phone pictures. I will be taking much nicer photos in a later post:

My less-than-pretty-looking audio setup inside that will play the subtle idle hum/ticky sounds I made for it. I also have a Stanley remote power switch that connects to this included strip to power up to 4 devices that will go on/off on-demand. That will turn on sounds, lights/electronic panels, and overhead lighting.

iPod on a continual loop feeding into the powered 2.1 system in back

The panels getting close to done, getting ready for installation

Full lights on to show the panels in place on the right

Lights off with single overhead light


It is actually a bit brighter than the phone picture shows, but there it is (for now)!

I decided I want to see the sides more and will be adding some dimly-lit orange so it at least brings that out and not just showing a front with lights on one side. I won't go very bright through so that I can keep it more like how it looked in Jabba's palace.

I will be making a circular shield around the light source as well so that the light doesn't glare in your face when you're in the room, while also hopefully directing some of that light downward. The room's ceiling height limits options for doing lighting without obstructing the full view of the carbonite.

I began this project 8/25 last year and got this up and running exactly 1 year today. Having little kids make it much more difficult to make progress faster, that's for sure!
Re: HIC Han in Carbonite Progress - my build (pics)

The mounting looks secure and the hidden plug is a good tough. I'm not sure what I will do with mine after Halloween. It might get mounted in the basement. I hoping I can come up with a way to keep mine secure at a Halloween party without permanent damage or additions to the wall.

You built yours only for Halloween? Man that's nuts! It's a lot of work, but I tell ya I know exactly what I would do to shorten the process if I did it all over again. There's a ton I would do different and have to live with the stuff I wasn't 100% happy with, but I'm still very proud overall.

Do you have a thread open of your progress? I'd love to see!
This thread is more than 8 years old.

Your message may be considered spam for the following reasons:

  1. This thread hasn't been active in some time. A new post in this thread might not contribute constructively to this discussion after so long.
If you wish to reply despite these issues, check the box below before replying.
Be aware that malicious compliance may result in more severe penalties.