COT2


 
HomePortalCalendarGalleryFAQSearchMemberlistUsergroupsRegisterLog in

Share | 
 

 cheap alternatives

View previous topic View next topic Go down 
AuthorMessage
soothsayer
Journeyman
avatar

Posts : 1385
Join date : 2011-06-30
Age : 45
Location : Right here.

PostSubject: cheap alternatives   Thu Jul 27, 2017 8:45 am

You know, I really don't like the phrase "on budget" or "under budget". People are going to buy what they want, what they like. I'm just creating this thread so that we have a common area where we can post crafting cost savings. Forget the fact that we're all adults with spouses and families and bills, and that we have limited disposable income; look at this thread more along the lines of, "why should I be paying $15 for this when I can spend $5 on something comparable like that?" We all have our cost saving measures and secrets, so why not share?

putty
There's a modeling "must have" for me that is difficult to acquire, and that is Green Stuff, a two part epoxy that you mash and roll together until perfectly blended, used for a lot of modeling areas, from repairs to contours to sculpting. It's great to have, but it can be a bit pricey.

Games Workshop, the makers of miniature games like The Hobbit, Warhammer, and 40K, sells 20g of Green Stuff for 9 Euros, with a 10 Euro shipping fee. That's a total of $22.23! Some not-so-local hobby stores may have it in stock, but then you're looking at the cost of driving (and related expenses like travel snacks).  **Quick conversion - 20g equals 0.7oz**

An alternative to Green Stuff is Kneadatite, which, oddly enough, is the exact same thing as Green Stuff, just without the Citadel label (kneadatite makes green stuff). On Amazon, you can pick up 3.5oz of it for $17, plus another $8 in shipping. That's five times the amount that GW will sell, at a comparable price! You can also get 3.5oz of Kneadatite off of eBay, with no tax and free shipping, for about $20.

Of course, you can buy this product in different amount. But, if Kneadatite is the same thing as Green Stuff, and with the prices being relatively universal, is there a cheaper alternative?

Yes: milliput.

On Amazon, 5oz of milliput can run for around $8; one of the sellers offers free shipping. That right there speaks volumes, that you can get a lot more putty for more than half the cost. Oh, one thing to mention: modelers from various sites recommend that you get the "superfine" putty, as that will hold details better. eBay seems to be comparable in amounts and pricing as well. That's an excellent deal, by any measure!

So far we have GW brand putty at $31/oz, Amazon kneadatite at $7.14/oz, eBay kneadatite at $5.71/oz. Kneadatite winner, eBay. With milliput, we're looking at $1.60/oz! I know the admin wants us to limit our swearing here, but I can't help it... holy shit, that's amazing!

*ahem* Where was I? Oh yes. Convenience.

While the milliput seems to be the best purchase by far, what if you need something right now? I found that our local Menards carries Loctite Gray All-Purpose Repair Epozy Putty in 2oz tubes, similar to JB Weld, for $4.47 (or $2.23/oz). Sure, it's $0.60/oz more than milliput, but if you factor in time, it isn't really that bad, is it? I haven't used this product yet, but I did buy some for an upcoming project. According to the label, it adheres to "metal, plastic, ceramic, concrete, brick, aluminum", cures in 25 minutes, and can be sanded/drilled/painted over an hour.

In this review, I would declare that milliput is the WINNER, with the Loctite epoxy putty coming in at a close second; remember, only $0.60 separates the two, and that is a matter of getting the product now versus waiting a week or two. While Kneadatite comes in third, it's with the understanding that you can purchased twice as much for the same cost; you may be getting a product that is recommended by the industry (ie, Games Workshop), but is the "professional grade" mark up worth it? Green Stuff comes in dead last; with the x6 price increase as compared to Kneadatite, with you paying an extra $25 simply for the Citadel name, dear gawd in heaven why would you even consider it?

...

what not to try

Testor's Contour Putty - This isn't a shaping putty, you cannot use it for anything other to fill in seams or to, surprise, make contours. Depending on the age of the tube you buy (and I say this from personal experience), you will either get a dried out mess or something that comes out looking like grey water. I have yet to get passable results with this.

The bluetac trick - I've read that some modelers will use bluetac (spelling?) to mold the piece they want, and after applying details, paint it with a coat of super glue. I can see that working, but at the same time, does the bluetac dry or harden? Or does it remain soft until the thinnest of glue layers? Should you sculpt a head, would it not be possible for that piece to eventually squish, whether it's glued or not?


Last edited by soothsayer on Thu Jul 27, 2017 3:23 pm; edited 1 time in total
Back to top Go down
View user profile
soothsayer
Journeyman
avatar

Posts : 1385
Join date : 2011-06-30
Age : 45
Location : Right here.

PostSubject: Re: cheap alternatives   Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:22 am

Rub-n-Buff

Ever since watching a video of Adam Savage (of Mythbusters fame) working on a Nerf gun conversion, I have been interested in Rub-n-Buff. In modeling, Rub-n-Buff (here on out known simply as RnB)... depending on application... can either be used to add weathering or acts as a dry paint. And while they are relatively cheap, averaging out at $5-$6 between Amazon and Walmart (minus shipping), I reasoned that there's got to be a cheaper way.

And there is.

From watching a bunch of videos and pouring through several websites (my job is so difficult), I found that the most effective recipes shared something in common. Ready?

One part PVA glue
One part Mica Powder (or Perfect Pearl)

That's it. That's all. Recipes varied in that the powder ratio can be increased or decreased, depending on the effect you are after. Other recipes talked about using boiled linseed oil instead of glue, but that would be for wood applications, not plastic or metal. There were recipes that used furniture polish, bees wax, shoe polish... all of which replicates what RnB truly is, a wax application, but, in being a wax, they would tend to eventually wear off. There was one recipe that used a combination of items and truly copied RnB, but that wasn't in keeping with cost effectiveness. With this glue/powder, what we are making is more along the lines of a tinted or colored glue, and as such, should adhere to our projects more effectively. And, being a simple recipe, we can easily and quickly make whatever colors we want. That's the aspect I'm liking.

The thing you need to keep in mind with the glue is that it needs to dry clear. Modge Podge, Elmer's, fabric glue... these are all white glues, but dry clear; depending on what you use, it may appear as a gloss or a matte. Also, if you make a large enough batch to store, your mixture may dry out. With a white glue like these mentioned, a little bit of water will freshen things up.

Checking Walmart's online prices, a canister of mica powder runs for about $3 on up. This would be for a .6oz bottle. To keep things in perspective, a tube of RnB, which is .5 fluid ounces, is $8. A bottle of glue can be had for less than a dollar, and comes in at 4oz (and higher). I don't know what the math would be to mixing a powder with a liquid, so this may be wrong... in using a 4oz bottle, that'd be what, 6.5 bottles of powder to maintain the 1:1 ratio? So... $21 to make 4 ounces of homemade... that'd be equal to eight tubes of RnB ($64)... $5.25/oz for homemade versus $16/oz for RnB? And that doesn't factor in shipping.

Additionally, from what I was looking at, you can buy these products at the dollar store, which would drive the costs down even more!

I'm attaching one of the DIY videos here so that you can see the kind of effects this will give your project. I personally don't like what she's doing, think it's a bit too much, but regardless you can see how this will bring out details and how it can be used for weathering or give a wash like effect.

Back to top Go down
View user profile
soothsayer
Journeyman
avatar

Posts : 1385
Join date : 2011-06-30
Age : 45
Location : Right here.

PostSubject: Re: cheap alternatives   Thu Jul 27, 2017 2:53 pm

Washes

Washes are used for shading effects or panel lines in models; recesses are filled in with the mixture, and as most of the mix evaporates, the pigment begins to collect and dry. This really brings out and heightens the detail. Normally, you can buy premixed wash, or you can buy an ink and then thin it into a wash... in my continued waste of company time, I've been watching several videos on how to make your own washes.

The cheapest method I found is quite simple: in a shot glass (or other small contained), mix one part paint with ten parts water. However, there is one problem with this method, and that is known as tidal pooling. Visualize a drop of water on a flat surface; the water will form a bubble or a small mound, which is due to surface tension. Now, imagine that water mound atop a recess. The paint will collect where the side of the bubble touches the model's recess, and as the bubble shrinks due to evaporation, the paint builds up on the sides... not within the recess. This can be easily fixed, simply go over the recess again when it has dried with more wash, OR when it is still wet and fresh, touch the pool with the tip of a dry brush, and the water will be drawn in. Another downside is that this cannot be premade... no mixing large amounts and storing; the water will evaporate.  **Note: some painters use a drop of dish soap in their mixture to help break the water tension; I do not know what the ratio would be for that. Also, while you can use tap water, due to impurities, it's recommended that you use distilled.**

The next cheapest method is called "Magic Wash". This requires paint and Pledge with Future Shine (or any acrylic floor polish, including dollar store brands). This is mixed at a ratio of 1:1, and, unlike the water method, this can be mixed in large quantities and stored. Because of the properties of the floor polish, this will not have the tidal pooling effect. The one downside is that your model will have a glossy sheen to it; spraying your model with a protective cover for example, dull coat) will remedy this.

I'm torn between the two. While I like the quicker water method, the appeal of mixing a larger batch does have its advantages. As far as clear coating everything, the sites I've been researching say you should be doing this anyway to further protect your models from chips or scratches. *shrugs*

17mL of Vallejo wash runs for $5 on up (minus shipping). Pledge with Future Shine Floor Finish runs about $6 for 27 fluid ounces (or 798mL). Let's add, say, $1 for a Apple Barrel acrylic paint (2oz bottle). With the Pledge, we're looking at a total of $0.36/17mL of homemade wash, as compared to Vallejo's $5/17mL! Even if you were to get a name brand paint, the cost isn't increased by much.

...

In reading modeling techniques, it does seem that floor polish is an "essential". It makes canopies and windows... not more clearer, but... *shrugs*. It is also used to make jewels or areas that are supposed to shine, well, shine. Painted lightly, it makes vehicles shine and look newer.

Just remember that these methods are for acrylic based paints! This will not work for oil based!
Back to top Go down
View user profile
soothsayer
Journeyman
avatar

Posts : 1385
Join date : 2011-06-30
Age : 45
Location : Right here.

PostSubject: Re: cheap alternatives   Fri Jul 28, 2017 1:41 pm

rub n buff, continued

Today I stopped at Dollar Tree over in the mall and found that they carry five different powders. Note that they are not labeled mica powder, that's just the main ingredient. Same thing with Perfect Pearl... that's just the name brand. What you want to look for is a loose eyeshadow; the back of the card should have mica powder as an ingredient, and the card should read someplace that it is a powder. Sorry for the redundancy, just looking to clarify.

Okay. Anyway, as I said, Dollar Tree carries five powders, the brand being L.A. Colors. The five colors are snow white (slightly off-white), radiant (looks copper-ish), sunshine (gold), lollipop (pink/salmon), and grape jelly (light/medium purple). These are a bit glittery, or at least appears metallic. They come in 0.1oz containers for a dollar apiece. I also purchased a "7 Day Pill Reminder", essentially stackable plastic containers; while they aren't all clear, they are colored, so I can mix and store the homemade RnB in containers that kind of match the color.

I haven't stopped at Walmart yet to see what colors they carry.

Here's what I picked up:


These containers may look small; after all, they're only a fraction of an ounce. But, if you look at it from a different perspective...


The portion holding the powder is roughly an inch high with a diameter of 1.5 inches. There is a hollow, allowing for the makeup brush to fit, but still, it does seem as if it holds a fair amount.

I still don't know if it'd be more advantageous to mix as you go / make what you need, or create a batch all at once. I guess it depends on what you're doing or planning to do. But now that I am able to see these pigments in person, I can see how they'd be a modeling benefit. On an unrelated note, I have ordered a 32 piece set of mica powder, that carries both metallics and flats / mattes; this should more than cover any color needs.


Last edited by soothsayer on Fri Jul 28, 2017 1:55 pm; edited 1 time in total
Back to top Go down
View user profile
soothsayer
Journeyman
avatar

Posts : 1385
Join date : 2011-06-30
Age : 45
Location : Right here.

PostSubject: Re: cheap alternatives   Fri Jul 28, 2017 1:49 pm

washes, continued

If you able to blend your own colors, I did find another cheaper method: soft pastels. You know those artist crayons? They look like rectangular blocks? Yeah, those. I was watching a video where the guy would take his exacto knife and scrape the pastel (producing powder), and he would just make his own blends by combining different colors. The important thing here is that you use the soft pastels, and not the oil variety.

He mixed his in a ratio that, as he described it, gives the appearance of coffee when brushed on white paper. He mixed his with the powder, some water, and a couple eyedrops of dish soap (that was watered down).

**A container of the bubble solution, the stuff that kids use to blow bubbles, can be substituted for the dishsoap/water mix, as it is already watered down.**

I figure, we already have the paint, so why add an other step? But the more I think about it, that could be an effective means at different levels of shading. *shrugs* I'd rather go and buy different shades of paint, then try to remember what blend I made.
Back to top Go down
View user profile
soothsayer
Journeyman
avatar

Posts : 1385
Join date : 2011-06-30
Age : 45
Location : Right here.

PostSubject: Re: cheap alternatives   Wed Aug 02, 2017 3:18 pm

rub n buff, continued

Had ordered (and just arrived) a 32 color pigment set of Pearl Ex by Jacquard (www.jacquardproducts.com); each canister holds 3 grams (0.1oz) of powdered mica. The front of the box validates the Youtube video by claiming this can be used for rubber stamping, polymer clay art, marbling, calligraphy, fabric painting, interior decorating, stenciling, sculptures, faux finishing, fine art painting, tole painting, and decorative painting.

According to the back of the package, "Mix into... acrylics, watercolors, oils, painting mediums, wax, clays, nail polish, varnish, adhesives, gouache, embossing powders and inks... anything clear!" It can "apply to... walls, furniture, paper, canvas, glass, natural & polymer clays, jewelry, home decor objects, textiles, plaster, wax, metal and plastic."

I'm not going to use the colored font option here, but the colors in the set are:

METALLIC COLORS

650 Micropearl
651 Pearl White
652 Macropearl
653 Red Russet
654 Super Russet
655 Super Copper
656 Brilliant Gold
657 Sparkle Gold
658 Aztec Gold
659 Antique Gold
660 Antique Bronze
661 Antique Copper
662 Antique Silver
663 Silver
664 Super Bronze
665 Sunset Gold

INTERFERENCE COLORS

670 Interference Red
671 Interference Blue
672 Interference Green
673 Interference Violet
674 Interference Gold

DUO COLORS

680 Duo Red-Blue (I believe that would be a purple, right?)
692 Duo Green-Purple (or green-duo red-blue. ba dum tss)
693 Duo Violet-Brass

FASHION COLORS

683 Bright Yellow
684 Flamingo Pink
685 Spring Green
686 Turquoise
687 True Blue
688 Misty Lavender (sounds like a stripper. cool)
689 Blue Russet
691 Solar Gold

Please note that I haven't looked up what an "interference color" is supposed to do, so don't asked. I did see that some people do mix this and blast it through an airbrush. Something to consider!
Back to top Go down
View user profile
soothsayer
Journeyman
avatar

Posts : 1385
Join date : 2011-06-30
Age : 45
Location : Right here.

PostSubject: Re: cheap alternatives   Fri Aug 04, 2017 3:39 pm

putty, continued

This isn't a continuation, but rather an announcement. Found a seller on eBay who is selling two 4oz packs of superfine milliput (free shipping) for $12.00. I did the math, and that is a substantial savings over Amazon; Amazon, if you recall, sells a 5oz pack of superfine milliput for $8.

Will initially the savings doesn't look like much... $1.50/oz versus $1.60... keep in mind that the Amazon cost does not factor in shipping.

Hey, our hobbies are pricey enough. If I can save a couple bucks, I will.
Back to top Go down
View user profile
soothsayer
Journeyman
avatar

Posts : 1385
Join date : 2011-06-30
Age : 45
Location : Right here.

PostSubject: Re: cheap alternatives   Mon Aug 14, 2017 5:32 pm

putty, continued

Want to know what 8oz of milliput looks like? Here's what came in today. I'm already liking this; being separate sticks, you don't have to worry about the stuff accidently mixing when breaking or cutting a piece you need.

Oh, the sticks are on a standard sized sheet of paper.



Let's see GW sell that much for such a price!
Back to top Go down
View user profile
soothsayer
Journeyman
avatar

Posts : 1385
Join date : 2011-06-30
Age : 45
Location : Right here.

PostSubject: Re: cheap alternatives   Fri Sep 22, 2017 3:04 pm

paints

I know... I know... that this has been covered elsewhere on this site, easily three or four times: what paints to best use. Each of us has our own favorites and opinions on the subject. I'm just wishing to continue the discussion along cheaper alternatives.

Now then, I have seen videos and read forums where people make their own paint using mica powders or those pastel crayons. I may have also mentioned that here in an earlier post. While that might be a cheap way to go, I would think it would be time consuming, in trying to recall the exact blend you made. Instead, what I want to discuss are crafting paints.

Of the forums I was reading today, most of them agree that the use of crafting paints is "alright". While opinions varied as to the quality of the paints, all agreed that they are best used for scenery or terrain. About 80% of the posters like using the crafting paints for models, with the remaining 20% being totally against them. It essentially breaks down like this:

FOR
1. Cost. Craft paints are much cheaper than modeling paints.
2. "It's the carpenter, not his tools."
3. If you make a mistake, you can wash it off with soap and water.

AGAINST
1. Pigments are too big; will blur out details
2. Don't flow as easily through an airbrush as modeling paints.

With the FOR group, the cost is easy to see: $0.80 to $1.80 for a 2oz bottle of paint, versus a couple bucks more; I would agree that yes, you can have the best product in the world, but if you can't use it, it'll be crap... just as a professional using a crappy product will still grant professional results; acrylic, being water based, is easy to clean up.

With those AGAINST, the posters sounded like they were high end "I will spend 120+ hours putting this model together to compete in a national level." Truthfully, these were model sites I was reading, not gaming sites (IT server block), so it is a bit of a different crowd.

To continue...

The thing with acrylic paints is that they are water based, not solvent based. You can mix them with water, rubbing alcohol, window washing fluid, and floor polish, all in an effort to get the desired consistency and look that you want. This is true even with crafting paints. Crafting paints, by their very nature, are thicker, so you will want to water them down a bit for model use; the reason they are thicker is because they are meant to be applied to a porous surface (not all acrylics, just the crafting ones). Plastic, surprise surprise, is not porous. The larger pigments will fill into the grooves and pores better, will coat or level them with the rest of the surface, whereas a thinner paint will just coat (leaving the groves and pores visible). So yes, left untreated, they will hide or blend detail. Additionally, while you can dilute the paint for airbrushing, the cleaning of the airbrush will be a little more involved than usual.

Crafting paints, it turns out, tend to dry a lot quicker than modeling paints. I can't say why, I didn't come across a reason. For modeling, this may result in there being visible brush marks or ridges in your painted surface. Turns out, this is not as bad an issue as one would suppose: wet your brush and go over what you painted; the ridges will level out.

The professional model builders complained about how crafting acrylics are not good for washes, that they won't sink into the crevices or will have a tidal effect (darkening the sides of the grove, and not the bottom). From other videos I've watched (on how to make your own washes), this is alleviated by using the likes of a floor polish instead of water.

And that's the secret right there: water. thin the paint before use. Use water to correct mistakes. If you aren't getting the desired look, change the amount of water. Find what works best for you.

The one thing they all agreed on though is that you should prime the plastic before applying craft paint. That said, you should be good to go!

...

One other point to mention, and I say this because we are so easily and conveniently located near a Walmart. What crafting acrylic paint should you use? Apple Barrel or Fine Art? Even with everything mentioned above, there is a difference between the two (even with coming from the same manufacturer). This is important. Let me repeat that.

This. Is. Important.

Apple Barrel is, plain and simple, crafting paint. Bigger Pigments. Thick. Will require more wok in order for it to work the way you want. Folk Art, according to the Plaid website (the manufacturer of both paint lines), is a premium acrylic featuring artistic grade pigments. What does that mean? The pigments are smaller and is excellent for detail work; in other words, if you can't get modeling paint, this is what you want. Sure, you can use the Apple Barrel stuff, but if you're one of those "I worked on this model for 120+ hours" types, Folk Art is the paint for you. You might still have to water it down, but you won't have the "difficulties" you normally would associate Apple Barrel with.

Lastly, one of the things I read was how does acrylic paint react to dull coating... spraying or coating your model with a clear protective layer, in an effort to prevent scratching / paint flaking off. Quick answer: it doesn't react. Two completely different chemicals, they will not mix or cause bleeding. You can go a cheap route and apply a clear floor polish to your finished model, just note that it'll be, duh, shiny. Might be good for vehicles, but not so much for people (unless your goal is to give them a hot sweaty look).
Back to top Go down
View user profile
Sponsored content




PostSubject: Re: cheap alternatives   

Back to top Go down
 
cheap alternatives
View previous topic View next topic Back to top 
Page 1 of 1
 Similar topics
-
» Surprisingly cheap Grey Knight Terminators!
» Pretty Cool Tomb Kings stuff for dirt cheap!!!! BUY IT!!!!
» Gundam/Rider stuff. Cheap lot, need it gone ASAP.
» Interest: High Elf and Dwarf Minis for cheap
» Chaos Space Marines

Permissions in this forum:You cannot reply to topics in this forum
COT2 :: Real Life :: Creation :: General Art :: Modeling & Sculpting-
Jump to: