The Spinner - My Fujimi Blade Runner Build.

banistersmind

New Member
My birthday this year allowed me to realise a long held dream of purchasing the Fujimi Blade Runner Police Spinner.

Having lurked around these boards for a while and followed the outstanding work of many of you - particularly wayouteast - I have begun work on my iteration of this classic vehicle.

I've spent a lot of time considering how to tackle this project because I want to light it and possibly personalise my build. The Paragrafix Photoetch set was a must and I was able to purchase that ahead of time. For the lighting, I'm going to go for componentry from Light My Bricks here in Australia. They produce lighting solutions for Lego kits which are plug and play thus idiot proof in terms of construction. It will make lighting my Spinner relatively easy and I'll be able to avoid soldering - which I suck at.

For this opening post, I'm sharing some images of the cutting and altering process which I've been working away at over the past few days. The process has been a lot easier than I thought it would be - it has just been time consuming. A lot of drilling, carving in very tight areas, sanding with emery boards and test fitting the Paragrafix components. I preserved the standard back panel that goes behind the seats and I'm going to see if I can repurpose it and overlay it on the Paragrafix replacement so there's more visual interest, but we'll how that pans out. I completed the front tyre covers and the driver's control panels. Again those were a lot easier than I'd anticipated. The clear plastic arcs on the wheel covers are very forgiving in concealing the wonkiness of my sanding but I think I've done an okay job with these.

I'm a big podcast fan and over the past few days I managed to knock off two excellent series from the BBC - "The Lazarus Heist" & "Death In Ice Valley. There was also wine...several glasses.

The process wasn't without error. I think I over sized the holes in the side door control panels but I reckon I'll be able to fix these with later on.

I'll be taking a break before I start planning for the next stage.
 

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Richard Baker

Sr Member
Looks like you are doing some great prep work there!
I have this kit in my closet of doom waiting for the right frame of mind to tackle. I am going to be watching this thread with interest.
My only real regret with this kit is that there are no figures for it being in flight mode- it just looks silly to have it airborne with nobody inside.
I know there are some aftermarket resin figures but I do not want to build a replica of the hero prop- I prefer to show alternate vehicles for display...

Are you planning on lighting up the forward wheel arcs and spot lights as well?
 

banistersmind

New Member
Looks like you are doing some great prep work there!
I have this kit in my closet of doom waiting for the right frame of mind to tackle. I am going to be watching this thread with interest.
My only real regret with this kit is that there are no figures for it being in flight mode- it just looks silly to have it airborne with nobody inside.
I know there are some aftermarket resin figures but I do not want to build a replica of the hero prop- I prefer to show alternate vehicles for display...

Are you planning on lighting up the forward wheel arcs and spot lights as well?
I do intend lighting the forward wheel arcs. I'm not sure about the spot lights yet (I presume you mean the lights underneath). There's not a lot of room down there and I'm worried about both cost and the prospect of cutting and rejoining wiring (I've done it before but it was really hard).

At this stage, I've calculated the lighting alone at $300 AUD!
 

banistersmind

New Member
Update #1

I've finished the bulk of the alterations to the cockpit and cockpit instrumentation and - because I couldn't help myself - I've tested some undercoating. The Paragrafix overlays fit really nicely and I'm so pleased with the result.

I repurposed the original back wall panels for overlays for the recessed panels behind the seats and I've test fitted them. I think they look pretty good. I'll add some detailing and extra greebies later. Oh! And I've ordered some photographic gel papers at the suggestion of wayouteast to add to the panel detailing for later back lighting. I'm nervous about working with those but I know to take my time with it.

I'm happy with my progress. It's all very fiddly and it has challenged me but it has worked out better than I'd anticipated.
 

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banistersmind

New Member
Okay...potential problem here...
 

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Jedi Dade

Master Member
Strip it and start from primer again. Light thin coats. If you can't see though the paint after the first pass you're laying it on too thick. Its Likely that you needed more thinner in the paint when you laid it down... at least those are the causes of "my" orange peel paint failures ;)

Good Luck!

Jedi Dade
 

wayouteast

Sr Member
Okay...potential problem here...
Ouch! Oh dear. But we've all been there! :confused:

Jedi Dade is right; the only thing to do is to strip the parts back to bare plastic and re-prime, I'm afraid. When you're ready to do that I would advise a) wash the parts with warm soapy water, as joberg suggests, and let the parts air dry really well, b) rub the surface of the part gently with a scotchbrite pad (or similar) to take any gloss off the surface, c) warm the primer first to ensure it's at least at room temperature, and shake it really, really well (I always shake mine for at least three minutes after the 'rattle' starts), d) spray the primer in a warm room, and e) build the finish up in light coats, as Jedi Dade suggests.

Whenever I've had cracking and crazing results like this (and believe me I have!) it's always been some combination of the underlying surface, temperature or too heavy a first coat.

The good news is that shouldn't be a difficult fix, just irritating. Good luck!
 

banistersmind

New Member
Ouch! Oh dear. But we've all been there! :confused:

Jedi Dade is right; the only thing to do is to strip the parts back to bare plastic and re-prime, I'm afraid. When you're ready to do that I would advise a) wash the parts with warm soapy water, as joberg suggests, and let the parts air dry really well, b) rub the surface of the part gently with a scotchbrite pad (or similar) to take any gloss off the surface, c) warm the primer first to ensure it's at least at room temperature, and shake it really, really well (I always shake mine for at least three minutes after the 'rattle' starts), d) spray the primer in a warm room, and e) build the finish up in light coats, as Jedi Dade suggests.

Whenever I've had cracking and crazing results like this (and believe me I have!) it's always been some combination of the underlying surface, temperature or too heavy a first coat.

The good news is that shouldn't be a difficult fix, just irritating. Good luck!
I've spent a couple of days on it and I believe I may have dodged a bullet. I was able to repair the area toward the rear of the car and I'm pretty sure the cockpit area around the driver's side is fixable as well. As soon as I saw it I thought I'd laid it on too heavily.
 

Fett_Ish

Sr Member
I've spent a couple of days on it and I believe I may have dodged a bullet. I was able to repair the area toward the rear of the car and I'm pretty sure the cockpit area around the driver's side is fixable as well. As soon as I saw it I thought I'd laid it on too heavily.
If I were you I would follow the above advice. Looking at it the whole surface is questionable even if it isn’t as bad as the obvious spots. If you don’t strip it down,you run the risk of this happening at a later stage.
 

banistersmind

New Member
If I were you I would follow the above advice. Looking at it the whole surface is questionable even if it isn’t as bad as the obvious spots. If you don’t strip it down,you run the risk of this happening at a later stage.
Yeah. The more I look at it, the clearer it is to me that the whole body needs a do-over. What would be the best way of stripping it back? I don't want to use anything that is going to dissolve the styrene.
 
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wayouteast

Sr Member
Yeah. The more I look at it, the clearer it is to me that the whole body needs a do-over. What would be the best way of stripping it back? I don't want to use anything that is going to dissolve the styrene.
My first suggestion would be isopropyl alcohol. That will usually shift the majority of acrylic paint from the plastic, and shouldn't harm the plastic in any way (unless it's in contact with the surface for a long time - best not to soak parts in it). Just apply it with a cotton ball or soft cloth, and scrub the loosened paint off with a toothbrush or toothpick for small areas/sharp inside corners.

If the isopropynol doesn't do the trick, I've always had good results with either oven cleaner (I tend to use Mr Muscle) or window cleaner (like Windex) for large areas or tough to shift paint. The oven cleaner usually takes about 5 minutes to loosen the paint and again you can scrub it off with a toothbrush. Wear gloves and watch out for the fumes. The window cleaner can take a little longer but is less 'nasty' in terms of fumes.

Some people swear by brake fuid for removing paint, but I had a disaster once where it melted the plastic, so personally can't recommend that.

Other people have had very results with Super Clean or Purple Power which are car cleaning products, but I don't have personal experience of those. From reading other's reports, these seem to be safe on plastic and you can soak the parts overnight to remove all the paint with minimal scrubbing.

If you have any worries about harming the plastic, of course, you can always test your chosen solvent on pieces of sprue.

Once you've got the paint off, give everything a good clean in soapy water, let it all air dry, and then rub the surface with a scotchbrite pad to smooth everything over (or a fine wet sanding pad for any stubborn little residues). Then re-prime, as suggested above.

Good luck!
 

banistersmind

New Member
My first suggestion would be isopropyl alcohol. That will usually shift the majority of acrylic paint from the plastic, and shouldn't harm the plastic in any way (unless it's in contact with the surface for a long time - best not to soak parts in it). Just apply it with a cotton ball or soft cloth, and scrub the loosened paint off with a toothbrush or toothpick for small areas/sharp inside corners.

If the isopropynol doesn't do the trick, I've always had good results with either oven cleaner (I tend to use Mr Muscle) or window cleaner (like Windex) for large areas or tough to shift paint. The oven cleaner usually takes about 5 minutes to loosen the paint and again you can scrub it off with a toothbrush. Wear gloves and watch out for the fumes. The window cleaner can take a little longer but is less 'nasty' in terms of fumes.

Some people swear by brake fuid for removing paint, but I had a disaster once where it melted the plastic, so personally can't recommend that.

Other people have had very results with Super Clean or Purple Power which are car cleaning products, but I don't have personal experience of those. From reading other's reports, these seem to be safe on plastic and you can soak the parts overnight to remove all the paint with minimal scrubbing.

If you have any worries about harming the plastic, of course, you can always test your chosen solvent on pieces of sprue.

Once you've got the paint off, give everything a good clean in soapy water, let it all air dry, and then rub the surface with a scotchbrite pad to smooth everything over (or a fine wet sanding pad for any stubborn little residues). Then re-prime, as suggested above.

Good luck!
Thanks for those tips. My local hobby shop sells the following product;


I might look into this. I also work in a hospital and am around isopropyl alcohol as a matter of course so I'll take a look there as well.

The irony of all this is that I've undercoated the underside where the electronics are going to go - and it looks bloody perfect by comparison.
 

Pyramidrep

Sr Member
Banistermind,
A very tried and tested method ( Ireland and UK) is to use Detol disinfectant ( the brown solution). My son told me about it having stripped a lot of his old Warhammer models. I have used the method a few times on various plastic kits and it works a treat. Steep the model in it for an hour, then scrub with a toothbrush. Repeat if necesssary. Plastic parts are completely unaffected and I left some parts up to 3 hours in the stuff to shift layers of old paint.
 

Jedi Dade

Master Member
Good Luck! whatever you try - test it out first on the sprue to make sure its safe for the plastic. Let the sprue soak a good long time before trying it out on the kit :)

Jedi Dade
 

Fett_Ish

Sr Member
I stripped a Fine Molds Slave 1 twice using a Mr. Hobby product but it was a chore. I would try some EZ off oven cleaner on a test piece but that would probably work. It’s a pain,but it’ll be worth it.
 

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