As part of the Heroes of Armageddon project, I decided to get in on one of the many weekly drawings and offer up a painted Finecast model. I was fortunate that my FLGS (Game Vault) was more than willing to contribute this year like they did the previous year and provide the model for me to paint.
Let me stop for a second and tell you all how thankful I am that I was allowed to participate in this year's event and that I'm part of a gaming community that has helped Doctors Without Borders in the way that we have.
I tell everyone who will listen what we did with the Storm Wardens project and what we're doing this year. Sometimes my little nerd-man armies don't seem so silly after telling folks things like this.
I would be happy to do one project a year if it could be this one. I Guest posted on Dave Taylor's blog about the importance of doing charity work when this project was just getting started. Charity work has a way of impacting your life in ways you hadn't anticipated.
My first real Finecast experience
I knew this was coming. I had my initial thoughts (and I posted them) and read everything all you guys read when Finecast was first coming out too. The good, the bad... all of it.
But it wasn't until I swung by my FLGS and looked through the selection of Finecast models they had that I knew I was in for some real work. I was lucky in some respects. For the model I was looking to pick up, I had three to choose from.
That meant I could pick the best of the three after carefully going over each one looking for imperfections. And I did just that. I picked the best one of the three for what I thought were the fewest visible surface imperfections and it was the only one that did not have a warped Librarian staff.
You can see there are a number of issues with this guy despite being the best one of the three that I had to pick from.
From air bubbles in things like power cables and the armour right next to his face to complete miscasts of power cords under his arm and along his legs, this model had a bit of everything. Even the flash or extra stuff that had to be cut away (under his feet and tabard) was substantial and often in an awkward place which made it tough to get off the model.
My honest thoughts
I like the consistency of the super secret resin mixture. But that's where the "likes" end for me. Even then, I was partial to plastic models over metal before this so it's no surprise I still like this over metal.
The mold lines were bad. I had to go over every inch of this guy and clean them off. There were no real "freebies" where it had been cast so nicely that it didn't need any real cleaning along a joint or mold line. Those models/bits don't happen every day, but it's so nice to get one every now and then.
Some folks say the stuff is easy to clean in terms of getting off mold lines and such. This may be true, but you have to remember that it's just as easy to accidentally remove the super fine detail on them as well. I can't tell you how many rivets were removed in the process of trying to clean up some flash from around them. It's bothersome.
The connection points or vents I think they may be called are the absolute worst. This may be my least favorite part of the whole thing. They are everywhere and they range in size from tiny to massive. And the locations can make it impossible to get them removed completely.
And the whole superglue thing... I saw no difference between this stuff and regular plastic models. None of this "it seeps into the model and bonds the two pieces better than ever" junk. I use superglue for almost everything I do too so it's not like I'm trying superglue for the first time with plastic.
Don't even get me started on the "you don't need to wash it thing" either. Like I'm going to spend a crazy amount of time cleaning and prepping this guy, attaching him to a nice base (because he's no rank and file troop) only to discover my primer won't stick in some places because I couldn't be bothered to wash him. Sure.
So what am I going to do with this guy?
Well, I've put considerable work into cleaning him up. After that, I put some more time into repairing the areas that I could with greenstuff. I'm going to get him mounted onto a cool base and painted up as best I can.
My friend's Terminators
He's destined to be part of a DIY Space Marine Chapter for a friend of mine. It will give me a chance to work on my blues some more and work on my metallics as well. Maybe I can try some of the things I've been talking about when it comes to adding some realism to metals.
What does it mean for me in the end?
I'm going to stay away from Finecast when I can. Plastic doesn't have the problems this stuff does. Is there some sacrifice in detail? Maybe, but it seems to me that it's smarter to add the detail I want instead of trying to salvage it from a model that is poorly cast, has bad vents, tons of flash and a whole other host of issues.
I'm hoping I can do this model justice and make my friend proud to field it in his army. Maybe it stings so much because I absolutely love this model. It's got to one of my favorites of all time.
Here's what he look like right now. I've got him based and ready to be painted. Next time you see him, he'll be painted up in his new chapter colors.
Make sure to check out these posts as they might help:
How to clean mold lines off a model