Monday, August 04, 2008

Of cement and glitters

I broke part of the Exia's shield sometime ago (March 9, 2008), I think. I don't know... maybe I was just too lazy and too careless when I tried to pry it out.

Praaacck! My fiancee, who was a few yards away heard it and said, "Awwww... something broke, right?" I gave no response as she followed with, "There goes the kit I gave you." with a smile on her face.

Here's the shield thingie that broke --

It's a good thing that I've got Tamiya Cement around. It's perfect when you screw up and go Herculean on something like your styrene kits. It bonds styrene by basically melting the part that it touches.

I can only vouch for it working properly on styrene, though. It wouldn't work on ABS plastic. Don't ask. Tamiya Cement just doesn't work that well (if at all) with ABS plastic.

You can use LCA or super glue, of course. Admittedly, LCA would bond the severed parts like crazy. The problem with it, however, is that it would also render the affected plastic VERY brittle. You could end up with more problems than the one you've started with.

Here's how Tamiya Cement goes -- brush the cement thinly on the affected areas and put them together again by squeezing. If you see excess cement oozing with what seems like melting plastic, don't fret. It's the way the cement should work.

Put the plastic in a safe place and leave it there for, say, 12 hours. Too much curing time is definitely better than having it cure incompletely. In my case, I checked on it a full 24 hours later.

Here's how it looked after applying the paint and squeezing the parts --

Notice the excess cement? Now, it's time for some elbow grease and sand it off.

Finally, here's the painted shield --

It worked for me :)

I'm gonna go out of topic for a while and notice the paint on the shield. I used Tamiya's acrylic paints for this one, specifically Chrome Silver for the middle part. I've observed that it contains glitter-like material... which makes the finish look cheesy. It's good if you're modding your Gunpla for the prom to get some disco action, but in all seriousness -- it's not good.

I tried working with Tamiya's enamels on my Unicorn (I'm gonna post the WIP soon) and the enamel Chrome Silver doesn't contain any of that glittery stuff.

More on this acrylic and enamel metallic comparison when I get time to kill in the future. But for now, I'm sticking to enamels when doing some metallic painting... unless I get some GSI super metallics. :)

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