Basic questions about sanding
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Basic questions about sanding

Posted in Custom Workstation

Dear Customizers,

...sorry to pepper this forum with questions...

OK, this is basic, but here goes:

1) What grit do I have to get down to, before the abrasion lines won't show up when painting with acrylics on a plastic action figure?


2) Do you regularly sand down any "cast" lines (?) and/or the company markings on the action figure before customizing? Is this a lot of work?

The dremel I ordered is in transit, and I'm sure once that comes in I could experiment with all the grinding /sanding attachments (?) to my heart's content. But in the meanwhile, any general pointers will be appreciated....



Posted by Aquila08
on Wednesday, February 27, 2008
User Comments
Aquila08 -
Thursday, February 28, 2008
Thanks Jin! Your posts are always very helpful.

I'm working on ML Psylocke figure, so it must belong to the "annoying dingleberry" category...
Well, I will just have to experiment.

In terms of order of action, I'm thinking 1) loosen up any tight joints by sanding, 2) sand down any cast lines/ texts imprinted on the base figure, 3) sculpt in more mass where necessary, then 4) paint. Hopefully this is the right order... As my mentor once said, "do it once but do it RIGHT."

Jin Saotome -
Thursday, February 28, 2008
Good questions!

#1. It depends on the type of plastic. Some plastics will pill up and marr, some will sand smooth. The basic rule is you go from a rough grit down to the finest, which is 600 I believe. Like I'll star at 220, then to 320, then right to 600. But on my Sigma 6 figures just 320 grit sands them perfectly smooth, I love that type of plastic! But Hasbro ML plastic is annoying and is a pain to get smooth, it sands rough and leaves little dingleberrys on the plastic. Heh. Hard Transformers ABS plastic requires you sand with just 320 or even 400 to 600, otherwise you have these deep gouges that come up through the paint.

#2. I remove cast lines by raking the blade of my xacto knife -backwards- down the seam. A few strokes on the harder plastic and you're done. Usually works with soft plastic too but sometimes I'll have to use 320 grit to remove the little pilled edges that won't trim off. If there's any discoloration from the friction you can usually rub your fingernail over it to buff that down. I do this to all of the ML figures in my collection that have seam lines on their biceps and thighs. Do note that if you do that on a painted surface you're gonna have to repaint what you remove, heh.
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