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dmk0210

MPC R2D2 Build

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This might not be the best time to mention it, but you'd better use a good non-lacquer primer on all of the kit parts before you use those lacquer paints. As I understand it, lacquer is too "hot" for styrene and can "craze" (cause a network of fine cracks on the surface of) the plastic. While I'm at it, you're not supposed to use lacquer-based paints over enamel-based paints for the same reason.

I use the Tamiya Fine Surface Primer on my styrene kits. It's actually a synthetic lacquer and is safe for the plastic. I've never had any issues.

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Don't worry. Lacquer's not going to be a problem. I use it all the time. ;)
I use the Tamiya Fine Surface Primer on my styrene kits. It's actually a synthetic lacquer and is safe for the plastic. I've never had any issues.

Ah, okay. I use enamel paints almost exclusively, so I was just repeating what I've read on other modeling forums. Sounds like you guys know what you're doing, so I'll just sit back and watch now. :coolio:

Watch the thread. We are going to use all three types of paints on this kit. I'll show how I do it. :)

I'm looking forward to it!

Al

Edited by Zombie_61

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Did some work on the holo/light projectors today. As I said earlier, two of the three had poorly molded details, so I cleaned up the good one, drilled it out and used Bare metal Foil's Por-a-Kast to cast three duplicates in resin.

For a lens, I rounded one end of 3/16" a clear acrylic rod with sandpaper and chopped off a small section. Repeated two more times for three lenses. I wet sanded both ends with 220, 400 and 800 grit sandpaper and then polished with a nail polishing pad.

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The lenses got dipped in Future to fill in any remaining scratches and improve clarity.

2012-08-24160154.jpg

The projector bezels got primed with Tamiya Fine Surface primer, left to dry overnight and then painted with a gloss black enamel basecoat.

2012-08-24135443.jpg

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Hey-

Nice! What a cool project. I built all these kits back in the day. Nice to see one again.

Excellent!

Phil

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Very cool build, Ill be following along.

A bit off thread, do you have a few more pictures of your spray booth?

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Very cool build, Ill be following along.

A bit off thread, do you have a few more pictures of your spray booth?

I do.

DSC00538.jpg

It's a home made downdraft booth with under cabinet lights. The inside is painted gloss white. I later added a gooseneck reading lamp attached to the top for more light.

There is a clear acrylic door held closed with a magnet. After painting I can leave the model in there to dry, protected from dust and accidents.

Under the baking rack is a cheap furnace filter and a large square plenum area under it. It pulls enough air to use a spray can in there without any paint smell in the room, but that will foul the filter quickly. Luckily they are cheap and very easy to replace. :)

DSC00547.jpg

Here's the 400CFM squirrel cage fan on the bottom under the plenum.

DSC00549.jpg

It exhausts out the window. There is a dryer vent on the outside that closes automatically when the fan is off.

DSC00545.jpg

Blower and light switches. Low cost hardware store compressor with 5gal air tank underneath.

I was later able to fit plastic storage drawers between the switches for pipettes, neoprene, gloves, Q-tips, and various other things I use while painting.

Edited by dmk0210

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Wow Dave!

You've got all the kit.

This should look a treat when you're through.

So is this one of the first kits you ever built way back when?

:cheers:

Edited by geedubelyer

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This should look a treat when you're through.

I sure hope so! There are so many things I want to change on the kit, but I'm not sure exactly how to do it. I'm sort of making it up as I go along. :P

So is this one of the first kits you ever built way back when?

I can't remember my first model kit, I started very young. There were a few I remember building as a small child but can't remember which was built before the others. This one was an early one though. I also built the C3P0 at around the same time. Edited by dmk0210

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Didn't seem to make too much progress this weekend, but I think I now have a plan to fit the dome to the body without the raised/tapered ridge around the bottom.

2012-08-28183552.jpg

First, I shaved the bottom of the dome off completely to get rid of the belted edge around the bottom. Then I cut some circles out of .040 styrene sheet. I stacked these and glued them together. I plan to glue this to the bottom of the dome, sand it smooth, putty any imperfections and paint the whole assembly as one piece, but I also have some bits that I want to attach from the inside after painting, so to give me access to inside the dome, I cut a trap door that I can glue in later. (Notice the arrows and orientation marks. I can't cut a symmetrical square apparently. :blink: )

2012-08-29054346.jpg

Notice in the top pic, there is a raised edge at the top of the body. I needed to make the top of the body flat, so I scribed around that edge with a razor saw to cut that off, sanded it down so it will fit flush to the top edge inside the body. I'll glue that in later.

Edited by dmk0210

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Excellent work so far! :thumbsup: I like how you're going about fixing the raised edge of the dome.

Edited by crowe-t

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Your kit is coming along nicely. I always enjoy it when people post step by step buildups. I have picked up so many good tips from these over the years.

As a side note, me and the kids went to the Star Wars Celebration in Orlando last weekend and it was incredable. One of the best things was that there were several radio control life size R2's running around. It was so funny seeing the reactions of kids to the R2's.

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Your kit is coming along nicely. I always enjoy it when people post step by step buildups. I have picked up so many good tips from these over the years.

I'm glad you guys are enjoying the build! I appreciate the comments and suggestions you guys are making.

I like these kind of threads too. It's interesting to see how someone else tackles the various problems.

As a side note, me and the kids went to the Star Wars Celebration in Orlando last weekend and it was incredable. One of the best things was that there were several radio control life size R2's running around. It was so funny seeing the reactions of kids to the R2's.
I've been researching on the forums where they make the full size R2s. They are insane. Some of those guys put an incredible amount of work into detail, function and accuracy. Edited by dmk0210

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I attached the disks I cut out to the bottom of the dome yesterday, then I slathered on some of my sprue putty and let that sit overnight.

This morning I took a long bolt with some washers and a nut. Put it through the hole in my "trap door" on the bottom of the dome, and clamped it tight with the nut. I chucked this in my cordless drill and used it as a ghetto lathe with a hobby knife to shave it down. I then used a sanding sponge (obtained at Lowes hardware store) to smooth it out. One side of the sponge is maybe 80 grit or so and the other is something like 150 grit. After this I wet sanded with 220 grit, and then 400 grit wet/dry sand paper.

2012-09-01151600.jpg

After the 400grit, I did a close inspection and found some low spots, pinholes and other surface imperfections, so I applied some putty (3M Acryl Blue automotive glazing putty), and set that aside to cure.

2012-09-01163145.jpg

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It was a little slow going the last couple weeks. The scribing slowed me down a bit (I hate scribing and it's a real weakness in my skillset), and some issues came up that had me away from modeling for a little while. But, I did make some progress this weekend and I'll have an update later today. :)

Edited by dmk0210

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So, the dome has been giving me a bit of trouble. Scribing, filling, sanding, repeat. To take a break from that this weekend, I started some work on the body.

The door in the front didn't fit very well with gaps around the edges. To correct that, I glued a piece of 0.40 plastic along the long edge and 0.20 plastic on either end. This got trimmed and sanded to fit. I have no plans for anything in that bay. It was very unrealsitic, so the door will be glued closed.

2012-08-31121251.jpg

StarWarsIV_047Pyxurz.jpg

The shoulder joint has a bit more beef to it than as depicted by the kit. To fix that, I got some 1/25 scale auto wheels out of the parts box (real ugly ones too). I carved out a hole in each leg with an exacto knife, then once I got fairly close I wrapped some sandpaper around a dowel (actually my UMM saw handle) to carefully get it round and enlarge it to proper size. The trick to this is roll the sandpaper in a cone shape and slide it over the dowel, so you are making the hole larger in a smooth and round way and not getting the hole out of shape.

2012-09-16145228.jpg

To make a matching hole in the body, I used the hole in the leg to trace my position.

2012-09-16151353.jpg

Then I used the same method to carve it out and sand it round.

2012-09-16151439.jpg

Looking at it now, I'm actually thinking these are still too small. I'll look around and see if I can find something with a bit larger diameter.

Edited by dmk0210

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Untitled.jpg

At the bottom sides of the body, there should be some square notches. It was a simple matter to trace this out on either side and cut with my razor saw.

2012-09-16155446.jpg

I thin glued a piece of 0.40 plastic across the bottom of the space and some 0.20 plastic at the top. I'll trim this and sand smooth once the glue cures.

2012-09-16164154.jpg

Just above this on both sides will be a grill that is also missing. I used the vertical spacing of the existing front/rear grills as a pattern. Then I scratch built two grills with some 0.30 x 0.40 ribbing.

2012-09-15205427.jpg

Edited by dmk0210

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The shoulder joint has a bit more beef to it than as depicted by the kit. To fix that...

It's too late now, but you could probably have saved some time and effort by replicating that silver cylidrical shoulder whateveritis with styrene tubing. Determine the appropriate diameter, cut it to the proper length, sand one end to match the contour of R2's body, cement the contoured end to the body, and you're done; you'd have a "sleeve" on both sides that replicates the appearance of those shoulder joint parts. This would also have preserved the positioning of the holes on the sides of R2's body for the crossmember that connects the legs at the top pivot point, and by not cementing the flat end of the sleeve to the legs you'd retain the ability to move them. Of course, if you're planning to build this as a completely static model and don't care whether or not his legs can move (i.e., don't plan to change between biped and tripod modes), it's not really an issue.

Good catch, btw; that's one of the kit's inaccuracies I hadn't noticed before, and another item on the list of things I'll need to address when I get around to building mine. :D

Al

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It's too late now, but you could probably have saved some time and effort by replicating that silver cylidrical shoulder whateveritis with styrene tubing. Determine the appropriate diameter, cut it to the proper length, sand one end to match the contour of R2's body, cement the contoured end to the body, and you're done; you'd have a "sleeve" on both sides that replicates the appearance of those shoulder joint parts.

I thought about doing it that way, but then I'd have a compound curve to cut at the end of the tube. It's easier I think to just cut a round hole and insert the tube (or in my case, wheel) into the body. Edited by dmk0210

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I thought about doing it that way, but then I'd have a compound curve to cut at the end of the tube.

Cutting the curve into the tube never even occurred to me. I'd cut the tube straight across at a 90 degree angle, wrap sandpaper around R2's body with the grit side out, then run the end of the tube up and down the sandpaper until that end of the tube conforms to the curve of R2's body. It's an old fashioned method, but it's worked out pretty well for me on past projects. Irrelevant, of course, since you already have a plan of your own, which should work out quite well if you can find the right diameter wheel (or whatever you end up using).

Al

Edited by Zombie_61

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Cutting the curve into the tube never even occurred to me. I'd cut the tube straight across at a 90 degree angle, wrap sandpaper around R2's body with the grit side out, then run the end of the tube up and down the sandpaper until that end of the tube conforms to the curve of R2's body. It's an old fashioned method, but it's worked for me in the past.

Yea, I see what you are saying now. Conforming the part to the body using sandpaper hadn't occurred to me. That sounds like a neat trick. I'll have to remember that next time.

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Sorry guys, I'm a very slow model builder. But I do have an update with some work I did this weekend.

I wasn't happy with shoulder mods I did last week using the car wheels. The wheels were just too small. So I dug deeper in the parts bin and found some even uglier wheels that were a bit larger.

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I de-chromed these, opened the holes up in the body and legs using the same technique as I posted last week, and I'm happier with the result.

2012-09-23162429_zps318487c2.jpg

I trimmed the mounting flange off the the kit's connector shaft.

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And by coincidence, was the right diameter to fit the wheel hub.

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However, the shaft was too short to go all the way across the body. So I cut the shaft in half, inserted a section of sprue in the middle, and now I can adjust the length.

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I'll glue this all together later when I make a final assembly. Now I just need to conjure up something to limit the travel fore and aft so R2 will sit at the right angle in tripod mode.

2012-09-23164215_zpsf9528754.jpg

Edited by dmk0210

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The larger wheels are a big improvement. They look 'correct' now.

Thanks Crowe. I don't know what I was thinking the first time around. :doh:

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