Monday, 7 April 2014

Assembling a mounted samurai

This tutorial is to help you assemble your miniatures, as the have some difficult bits and some collectors may find this helpful in getting their miniatures to look natural.

First you will need these or similar tools, please note if you use these kind of tools you should know how to use them safely and you accept your own responsiblity as they can be dangerous.

Next here is the miniature I have chosen, a variation of one you will have already seen, there is also a separate crest and steel lance for supporting the sashimono.

First thing is to use your files and scalpel to remove any mould lines, I will not explain how to do this as most of you will already be familiar with how to do that.
Then we want to drill out any holes for holding weapons sashimono swords.

Here you can see the hole for the sashimono this will need drilling, I recommend a one point two drill bit but one mm will be fine. 

Firstly put the miniature on a solid surface, use something to pad it so you don't crush any detail. Then support both your hands on the table, and place the drill bit central to the hole, and slowly gently drill the hole to a depth of 3mm, take your time so as not to break the holder on the back of the miniature. You can measure the depth with your finger shown below.

Next put the drill through the center of the hand, this is important to do properly as otherwise the grip on the weapon won't look natural. The slide the drill bit back and forth to get the hole good.

Next the sword will be drilled in

Finally you will need to drill the sashimono itself, look for the indentation to see where to drill.

Next prepare the head for fitting, although a the heads were fitted during sculpting, they may need something trimmed of the neck, depending on the figure. Use a sharp knife or file very carefully slowly remove bits of the neck particularly the edges and bottom, regularly check the fit, also turn the head from side to side to ware off any little obstructing bits of metal, as in the pic below. Bear in mind working with metal heads is harder than plastic because you cannot melt it with the glue.

Next prepare the head for the crest. Now unfortuatly the mould maker decided to remove all the crest lugs I made. So you may need to file a small flat area on the front of the head. Also I don't pin these just use good glue. And be gentle. These kind of miniatures do not take rough handling anyway, because I don't like the dwarf look. I personally recommend muti basing anyway as this protects the a little more.

Now to glue your miniature. Cut the wire spear using strong cutters, to a length you like, and glue the sashimono in both ends, glue the head in too, I recommend Turning the head a little as it looks natural. But some look better looking down or straight ahead. You need to choose what kind of character your going for. Then glue on the sword and yari.

And your done. Also remember that with forthcoming releases you can really customise your collection, and capture the real look of a samurai force. 
You can use these principles for all the miniatures requiring assembly.
The next tutorial will focus on painting your miniature.

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