casting plastic figures

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yantaylor
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casting plastic figures

Post by yantaylor » 26 May 2022 13:38

Hi everyone.

I am building a British WW2 Para/Glider Company and I am 90% there but for figures operating the 2in Mortar.
I have one figure which fits the bill perfectly, it is a 1/72 scale Italeri figure from the set called "WW2 Anti-Tank Teams".
Now this kit is really hard to get hold of and is expensive, it has two of these figures in each kit, so I could do with five or six kits, which would be around £60-£70 to buy, a lot of cash for a dozen 1/72 figures.

So how easy would it be to cast figures from the figure I have, can I make a mould and churn out a dozen of these figures in plastic?

Here below is the figure in question;
ITA6131c (2).jpg
Can anyone help me?

Regards
Ian
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Gary Kennedy
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Re: casting plastic figures

Post by Gary Kennedy » 26 May 2022 20:34

Hi Ian,

I'm pretty sure that 'recasting' is a bit on the dodgy side, as in infringing copyright and the like. Given the 2-inch Mark VIII was pretty much just a barrel, might it be possible to nominate a few existing figures as mortar numbers and stick an appropriate length of plastic tube to them? I vaguely recall having that as an idea way back when for the same purpose (in my youth we didn't even have 2-inch mortars for our British troops...well, apart from those couple with the Esci Commando set, but other than that, nowt!).

Gary

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ShindenKai
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Re: casting plastic figures

Post by ShindenKai » 27 May 2022 07:00

I've used products from this https://www.smooth-on.com/ company and they've worked great.

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Max
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Re: casting plastic figures

Post by Max » 27 May 2022 13:22

Greetings from the Wide Brown.

Wat Tyler
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Re: casting plastic figures

Post by Wat Tyler » 27 May 2022 15:27

I have friends who cast in pewter often off things like original medieval badges which can be quite intricate. They use silicon rubber for the moulds , it comes as a two part that is mixed just prior to use , and can hold fine detail. Pewter has a pretty low temperature melting point and the moulds are good for quite a few castings.

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yantaylor
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Re: casting plastic figures

Post by yantaylor » 27 May 2022 20:54

Thanks Guys, I think I am a little out of my depth here :D
All great suggestions though.

Gary, if it were Infantry I would get that commando figure, chop his head off and replace him with a head with a tin hat, then stick a back pack on him and "bobs your uncle", but the figures I need are in para uniforms, he would stand out a mile.

I do find it annoying that these kit companies miss out the 2in mortar, it was an important weapon in every platoon and used in every theatre.

Ian

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T. A. Gardner
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Re: casting plastic figures

Post by T. A. Gardner » 29 May 2022 23:25

The internet is your friend. Rather than me explaining this, there are plenty of videos available on how to do it.



https://www.vudu.com/content/movies/det ... res/758372
(see episode 1)

These are just two of dozens available on the internet. You can cast in pewter, lead, resin, epoxy, or plastic depending on your needs. I do mine in resin, epoxy (a form of resin), or lead alloy (due to the crossover for casting bullets for black powder).

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yantaylor
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Re: casting plastic figures

Post by yantaylor » 11 Jun 2022 19:11

Hi T.A, nice clip.
I will try to find more on the net.
Thanks
Ian

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Dany Boy
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Re: casting plastic figures

Post by Dany Boy » 28 May 2023 10:49

I personally prefer to press in brass cuvettes, using old dental technician methods and materials.
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ShindenKai
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Re: casting plastic figures

Post by ShindenKai » 06 Jun 2023 21:23

Dany Boy wrote:
28 May 2023 10:49
I personally prefer to press in brass cuvettes, using old dental technician methods and materials.
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That's fantastic, where is the resin/plastic poured into? I don't see any channel(s). Thx!

monk2002uk
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Re: casting plastic figures

Post by monk2002uk » 07 Jun 2023 07:01

I don't know about plastic. Resin is a better option if you have never done this sort of thing before. There are several videos online if you search for two-part silicone moulds for casting resin figures. Hobbycraft is one source in the UK for the silicone mould and resin products, though you may be able to source these components more cheaply if you look around. The figure will be more tricky because the arms and the mortar form a closed-loop but it is doable. And fun. The resin needs to be mixed carefully to reduce the likelihood of creating bubbles.

Robert

gebhk
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Re: casting plastic figures

Post by gebhk » 07 Jun 2023 10:23

I'm sorry, perhaps I am missing something but if you are after British para 2" mortar crew why not just buy some British para 2" mortar crew?

Currently available in UK
SHQ BP04 - 2 figures firing + NCO with sten £2.50 per set
AB MIniatures: AB-INB 54 - 2" mortar team walking (3 figs), 2" team firing(2 figs), PIAT team firing (2 figs) - available in UK via Eureka Miniatures but availability can be spotty. Ordering from source (Australia) is an option, albeit usually a more expensive one in postage.
Brittania: ABP12 - 2 figures firing. £1.95. Available via Grubby Tanks

Also
FAA: BAF09 - 2 figures walking with 2", 2 figures firing - unless you can pick up on www, only available from US AFAIK.
TQD: BP07 - 2 figures firing mortar. Were available via CP models but I believe they are OOP. Sculpted by Tony Boustead. You may be able to get them on www.

That's just off the top of my head, so please don't take them as recommendations. I have my favourites, like everyone else but it is a question of taste and also how they fit the other figures in your collection for size and style. Also, when you look at the relevant websites, if you are anything like the rest of us, you may well find that your airborne company is far from finished..... Sorry!

Personally, I wouldn't bother with moulding full stop unless you want to make a hobby/business out of it. Just to to get started, I suspect you will end up spending quantities of money that will make 70 quid the bargain of a lifetime for 12 figures. Moulding and casting are arts (and quite separate ones - I have found that it is rare for one person to master both of these to a high standard) that you have to have a talent for and then a lot (and I mean: A LOT) of practice to master. In the end, with the best will in the world and the best equipment, if you don't have the talent you will continue making c..p. A painful lesson to learn after all the investment. If you really do want to be a caster/moulder, first go and practice with an established high-quality practitioner to see if you really like it and if you are any good at it. The world's moulding/casting epicentre seems to be Birmingham so not that far away from you.

In this instance, in adition, apart from it being illegal and morally questionable, you are starting with a soft plastic master which is unlikely to mould well and you end up with a figure that is not the right thing in any event so you still probably have to do at least a head swop on it etc. I really don't see why anyone would want to go down that road....

If I misunderstand, then please accept my apologies.

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Dany Boy
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Re: casting plastic figures

Post by Dany Boy » 14 Jun 2023 14:12

That's fantastic, where is the resin/plastic poured into? I don't see any channel(s). Thx!
[/quote]
Thanks ShindenKai
This is an old dental technician method which doesn’t need channel(s) to pour into the resin. The resin I’m using gets thick and plastic before it gets set, and I need just to position it over the element I need to copy and then PRESS ;)
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