Tag Archives: resins

Back to Finishwork!

Hurrah hurrah! I am finally working with color again. It seemed like forever prepping these guys… I’m not sure if that’s because I’m a cruddy prepper, a perfectionist, they were really rough, or some combination of those. I haven’t had much time for models but all of it has been prep, prep, and prep some more. I wouldn’t be surprised if I’ve put 15 hours of prepping in on these two.

But yesterday, with primer smooth, pin holes filled, and veins applied, they were ready to go. I got about 2-3 layers on each through the afternoon and evening.

My Hale resin is going to be a blue roan. Right now he’s what I think of as an “Impressionist roan”- he looks more or less like a roan, but the body is an approximation of the hair mix instead of actually hair detail. Since I’m going to do hair-by-hair roaning on him, I think I’ll do a bit darker with the pastels.

I added some brown to his coat too, which I think really makes the roan even richer. Some black roans are very black and white, while others have a lot of brown tons, even though they are clearly not bay roans. I assume it’s something like sun-fading on the black hairs mixing with the roaning to make a brown-highlighted black roan.

breton 2-16-13

My Fritz resin is also getting clothes! He was a beautiful and generous gift from Caryn and I’m super excited to see him come to life. I was eager to find him a name too, since Fritz is the name of one of my other horses. His new name is Martouf, and he’s a Warlander (Friesian x Andalusian).

Martouf is going to be a dapple rose grey. I’ve only sketched in his mane and tail in acrylics here- there will be a lot more grey and variation in there eventually, but I like to have an approximation as I go to help me get the body color where I want it. I’m using a sharpened eraser to do the dapples, which is pretty tedious, but I do like the effect so far. The hardest thing on him might be knowing when to stop adding color, since he is supposed to be nearly grayed out.

martouf 2-16-13

The fun continues today! I was thinking about leaving the house, but while writing this post it started to downpour furiously. Sounds like a perfect afternoon to stay indoors :)

Ring in the New Year Live Show: Resins & Chinas

My travels this spring mean I’m missing a number of live shows, so I made a special effort to get the Ring in the New Year live show. This show was held in one of most interesting venues yet- a huge woodworking garage!


The show was all minis (perfect for me!) and had four division running two at a time. First up was OF China and CM Resin/Advanced CM/CM Glaze. I only had a few horses in those classes. My one ribbon was a third for my new Clydesdale foal, which was pretty nice since I’d hurried to finish her for this show.

Check out some of the other beauties on display that morning:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Furry Foal Friend

Well, I haven’t been very good about keeping up the blogging. Things have been busy, as predicted- Friday was my twelfth straight day of work. I’m enjoying this weekend immensely. Believe it or not, I hope things will get busier soon- because that will mean we’ve bought our dream condo, which even has a little room for me to use for crafting.

I’m attending a little live show next weekend. It’s all halter, which is good because I can’t even be tempted by lofty performance goals. I’ve got my class sheet drawn up so I won’t miss classes. I even managed to get one of my in progress ponies finished in time to show!

This is Kaylee, a First Draft resin (Mary Osedo) in bay sabino. She’s about stablemate scale (1:32). She’s about 95% done here- she still needs more layers of fixative and painted and glossed eyes. But I’m confident I can get that done by Friday, if nothing else.

kaylee - 1-20-13

Chop Chop part two

I found some more pictures from the lengthening of the HA Fritz resin’s back. He’s currently in primer stage, but he’s getting close to paint-ready and I’ve picked out color references for him.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I’m really glad I decided to go ahead and do this- he looks great now. Between my upcoming busyness and my complex color choice, I’m sure he’ll be a work in progress for a long time… but it sure will be fun!

My main color reference

My main color reference

Chop Chop

One of the pony projects I’m really excited about right now is my beautiful HA Fritz resin, a gift from Caryn. He is so cool and dynamic, and even though the casting was sold as raw he was really quite easy to prep.

HA Fritz - before

But of course, I couldn’t leave well enough alone. I was researching breeds for him and kept seeing that his back was just a bit short for any of the mixes I had in mind. Furthermore, if I ever wanted to show him in performance, saddle fit would be tough. So with the blessings of both Caryn and Horsing Around, I set out to lengthen his back.

The first thing I did was take the above photo into a photo editing program and add length digitally, as a way of testing things out.

HA Fritz - digital back lengthening

I liked how that looked, so I set to work. First I went back and reviewed Jennifer Buxton’s post on halfsy horses. Not all of her tips were applicable for this much smaller scale, but I did make a point of drawing lines across Fritz’s barrel so I could match him up again, like Jennifer did with her Boreas.

Then I did a whole lot of dremeling. The resin turned out to be totally solid, and with those trotting legs it wasn’t always easy to get the dremel blade where it needed to go. I did my best to cut as straight as possible, and to not cut away any more material than I had to.

ha fritz - chopping

After that, I pegged the two pieces together with three big wires, filled the gap with aluminum foil covered in super glue and baking soda, and then epoxied over that to get a nice smooth barrel.

ha fritz - mid scultping

And here he is, several hours of sanding and priming later, nearly ready to go:

ha fritz - after

I’m thinking a mulberry grey or bay going grey for him, but I’m open to suggestions. He’s already so pretty just in his naked white, I can’t wait to see him painted.

Ready to Rock and Roll!

Another Roll pun, but the last one. Because my Roll resin is no longer naked and nameless! Introducing my first resin and draft horse of my dreams, Higgs Boson.

I worked really hard on this guy and I am so pleased with how he turned out. His red roan coat is a mix of pastel layers and individual acrylic hairing. Thank you to Linda York for her wonderful sculpting and to Susan Carey for trading me the body.

Adventures of a First Time Stripper

Is there any blogger who can resist a racy title when talking about stripping paint off model horses? I obviously cannot.

Before this recent foray, I had never needed to strip off a previous paint job from one of my bodies. I was usually working from an original finish horse, and the few times I wasn’t I just sanded down the original paint job until it was smooth enough to re-prime.

But I recently found myself with three models in need of stripping: a Breyer SM with a thick lumpy acrylic coat, a multi-media Schleich with layers in acrylic, pastel, and modge-podge, and a resin with a mediocre acrylic paint job. So I finally started paying attention to all the discussions of technique.

After a little research, I decided to try to Oven Cleaner technique. And of course, to chronicle my trials here for whoever else might want to give it a go!

To strip a horse using oven cleaner, simply stick the horse in a bag, spray liberally with oven cleaner (I used the recommended brand Easy Off) and wait. After an hour or so, remove the horse and scrub with a toothbrush under warm water. Repeat until clean and add time in the bag as needed.

Tools of the trade

WARNING: Oven cleaner is made of nasty chemicals. It is smelly and if you get it in a cut it will burn. Avoid inhaling it, getting it on your hands, etc. Keep away from children and pets, and wash your hands!

First Victim: Breyer Stablemate

This guy was easy to strip. His acrylic coat was so thick it was begging to come off, and after only about an hour in the oven cleaner he was ready to go under the sink.

I barely needed the toothbrush- the power of the oven cleaner and the pressure of the running water did most of the work. I used the tooth brush in the crevices, but my model was soon restored to near OF condition:

Victim Two: Schleich Pony

I was a little bit worried that the oven cleaner would eat away at the soft rubbery plastic of a Schleich horse, so I didn’t leave him long in the bag the first time.

He was soon back in the chemical bath, however, because even with some serious scrubbing this is all the progress I made at first:

I got a little braver and left him in for longer, reminding myself that if I’m gonna ruin a body it might as well be a cheap one that I have no specific plans for. It ended up taking quite a while to get him relatively clean- I estimate that he spent 5-8 hours in his chemical bag total. I don’t know if the issue was his modge-podge sealer, or the multi-media coat, or what.

He didn’t clean up quite as well as the Stablemate, but certainly well enough to reprime and repaint. I stopped using the oven cleaner on him when I noticed that I was actually stripping of his original finish paint. But the plastic itself seems fine, with no evidence of the melting or warping that acetone can cause.

Ready for a new identity!

Victim Three: Resin Stablemate

At first the paint job on my newly acquired “Roll” resin seemed nice and smooth, and I considered sanding and painting him over without a full strip. But upon closer examination I saw that the thick acrylic on him was obscuring some of his detail, particularly in his feathering. So into the oven cleaner he went!

His first foray yielded promising results:

Besides the toothbrush, I found my fingernails to be useful tools.

Although the main areas of paint came off easily in big pieces, he needed a lot more chemical therapy to get down to primer and into detail areas. Even when I declared him stripped (after maybe 8 hours total in chemicals, and multiple scrubbings) he still had some residual paint and primer in cracks and crevices, which I’ll just have to get in the prepping stage.

But happily, he’s now much cleaner and ready to start his next adventure. And to my great relief, I don’t seem any damage at all to the resin from all the chemicals. Despite assurances from other hobbyists, I had worried.

Overall, I’m pretty pleased with my new technique. It’s definitely nice to start afresh, and the oven cleaner makes it pretty painless, albeit somewhat time consuming. The price was right, too- Easy Off ran me about $6, and the can is still pretty full even after all the liberal spraying on these three horses.

Next time I think I’ll be braver with the soaking times, and invest a few dollars in a hard-bristled toothbrush to use instead of the soft used ones I have.