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Making a custom base

As cool as a scale figure can be, so much can't always be said for its base and there are times when you wish you had a different one. Especially if it's plain, unserviceable, broken or simply ugly.

So today I'm going to show how I made a custom base for ITEM #4322. But first a few pictures:

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With Bardiche in Riot Zamber form.

With her Riot Zamber she's about 60cm long from the tip of the blade to the tip of her hair.

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Closeup

As is often the case with Alter, the final base looks quite different from the production pictures. Still this is far from being a bad base so why would I want to change it?

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With Bardiche in Riot Blades form.

Well the big question that comes with buying any figure that big is:
Where am I gonna display it?
Easy, I've got a large display case so let's put her in there!

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feat. my sexy feet

Well that seems to be large enough to accommodate even the Zamber so what's the catch?

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Let's change the angle...

Oh crap, hair's too long. Can't close the door. Let's try turning her a bit?

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/600/kyoshinhei1473869694.jpeg
Nope, hair fits but now the blades stick out (and let's not even think about the Zamber...)

So what do I do?
Well, I noticed that there's plenty of space between the figure and the back mirror but I can't push it further because the base gets in the way.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/600/kyoshinhei1473869696.jpeg
The entire left third of the thing could easily be removed without compromising stability.

So I decided to make a smaller base for this figure. Since there are no pegs on the base, any piece of wood with the correct holes in the correct places will do the job so let's do this.

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Let's go for a round base, with its center roughly at the center of gravity of the figure.

Let's take a piece of wood I had lying around and draw the shape on it.

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Actually a piece of Medium-Density Fibreboard (MDF), this is good for sanding.

Then roughly cut the circle.

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I leave a margin of about 3mm.

Since I have absolutely no faith in my ability to cut a proper circle, I'll be relying on my machines for that.

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To find the center on the underside.

The plan is to attach the piece to my Dremel and sand the edge while it's spinning in order to get a nice circle.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/600/kyoshinhei1473869744.jpeg
Some holes to attach a Dremel head.

I'm going to use this diamond cutting disk because it has nice holes on its surface that I can use as attach points.

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The holes I drilled before were to prevent the MDF from exploding when putting the screws

When it's all fastened, I attach it to the Dremel.

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Ready to roll.

Turns out that was NOT my brightest idea ever. A Dremel is absolutely not designed to withstand the sort of torque that this subjected it to and it nearly broke on me from all the wobbling and vibrations.
If I ever have to do that sort of work again, I'll rather use my power drill.

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Still I got the result I was aiming for.

Some more sanding to curb the edge.

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I've also marked the positions for the holes and the size of the drill bits I'll need.

It's time to drill the two holes and check if they fit with the two metal rods holding the figure.

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Oops, too wide!

First try was a failure. I fill up the bad holes with resin and drill new ones. This time I start with a smaller bit and gradually enlarge the holes until it fits.

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Now this looks about right

I check to see if the figure would fit with the new base.

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Yup, doors can be closed now.

Now I've got a base that is serviceable but ugly. Let's fix that!

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First a coat of white primer.

I'm going for glossy white paint.

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I check that the paint doesn't clog the holes

Then some glossy top coat.

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Not gray anymore but still quite plain...

Now to decorate that a bit, I find a picture of a Midchildan magic circle on the web and I color and resize it for my needs.

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source

Then I print it on waterslide decal paper.

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Of course this works only on a white or at least very light background.

I seal the ink with some topcoat and then cut it to the right shape.

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Gloss coat again to match the rest of the base.

For those not familiar with waterslide decals, you have to put them in water until the back sheet starts peeling off.

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That old broken saucepan is just the right size.

You then apply the thin decal on the chosen surface while removing the back sheet and then gently rub it to chase out the water that is between the surface and the decal.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/600/kyoshinhei1473869844.jpeg
The major advantage of waterslide vs. stickers is that as long a there is still some water under the decal, you can reposition it and correct its alignment if you messed it up.

One last layer of topcoat to wrap it up.

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Also I cleanly pierce the decal on top of the holes.

And here's the final result:

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/600/kyoshinhei1473869848.jpeg
I like the way it looks.

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The rods are firmly in place and the balance is excellent, even with the smaller base.

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And of course it fits inside the display case now!


Well this is nice and all but since then I have also bought the Wolkenritter (ITEM #2838 ,ITEM #58 and ITEM #6429) from the same line and so now I have mismatched bases ^^;
So I guess I'll have to do some custom bases for them too in the future and since they do have some pegs and support pieces it's going to be a little bit trickier than just drilling two holes in a piece of wood.
But that's a story for another tutorial ;-)

So do you have some bases you'd like to replace?
Did that give you some ideas?
See you in the comments.
2,620 hits • 21 comentarios

Comentarios21 comentarios

0pt
Act (hace 1 año) #14763578ITEM #117969. My husband knocked over one of my shelves and bunch of stuff broke >.> This is the one that got it the worst, though.
Wow, that base looks very thin. I can totally see how it would easily get damaged. If you ever decide to repair it and need some advice, don't hesitate to ask ;-)

scabbot (hace 1 año) #14763709EXCELLENT! I especially love your technique for making the base circular -- genius! Also thanks for the tip about waterslide decal paper; I had no idea there was such a product. <3 <3 <3
The figure whose base is the most obnoxious, to me, is this one of Yuu Kanalia: ITEM #149 -- You can see from the main photo that her intended position has NOTHING to do with the square sides of the existing base... Grrr.

Printer decal paper is fantastic. It is not as thin as the professional decals you get with a model kit but for someone like me with unsteady butter fingers, being able to print stuff instead of drawing it is a blessing.
Also that's a weird base indeed :-p

MarionEtx (hace 1 año) #14763718Thanks so much! When I see my brother next month, I'll borrow some of his tools and give this a go. I didn't even consider that there would be nails wide enough for that o.O What type of wood did you use and what was the thickness? (Sorry, I really don't know much about woodwork, but I can use the tools!)
Good luck then!
It was not exactly wood but MDF, 8mm thick. I used that because that's what I had on hand at the time but normal wood is fine too, probably even better because MDF tends to bulge around the hole when you drill into it and so it sometimes requires more sanding. Just be sure to pick a wood that's easy to work with. I'm no expert so I can't recommend any variety in particular but I'd say just pick one that does NOT look like it would break up in shards when you work it (also I tend to believe that heavier means better).
I don't know if you intend to paint it or not but if you go for wood aspect, know that you can achieve some classy results with furniture varnish.
Also I forgot to mention to carve some space around the holes under the base to accommodate for the heads of the nails but you would probably have realized it sooner or later ^^
hace 1 año
1pt
kyoshinhei (hace 1 año) #14755010snip
Thanks so much! When I see my brother next month, I'll borrow some of his tools and give this a go. I didn't even consider that there would be nails wide enough for that o.O What type of wood did you use and what was the thickness? (Sorry, I really don't know much about woodwork, but I can use the tools!)
hace 1 año
1pt
EXCELLENT! I especially love your technique for making the base circular -- genius! Also thanks for the tip about waterslide decal paper; I had no idea there was such a product. <3 <3 <3

The figure whose base is the most obnoxious, to me, is this one of Yuu Kanalia: ITEM #149 -- You can see from the main photo that her intended position has NOTHING to do with the square sides of the existing base... Grrr.
hace 1 año
1pt
kyoshinhei (hace 1 año) #14741261Out of curiosity, which one?

ITEM #117969. My husband knocked over one of my shelves and bunch of stuff broke >.> This is the one that got it the worst, though.
hace 1 año
3pt
MarionEtx (hace 1 año) #14751045That looks awesome! I recently got ITEM #331972 who came with a horrible black triangular base that many other Union Creative figures have; it's plain and pokes out in odd angles, making it difficult to position him with other figures (that are not from UC anyway). I'm thinking of making a cover for it, probably out of paper since I don't have any woodworking tools, let alone skills. If the pegs were attached to his feet I'd be more inclined to try something similar to yours.
I have one of these UC triangle bases too, can't say I'm a big fan either ^^
In case of a flat base with just a few pegs, here's in short what I would do:
- Get some nails that match the diameter of the pegs.
- Drill the emplacement of the pegs on the new wooden base (all the way through)
- Drive the corresponding nail through each hole, pointing upwards
- Cut the nails to peg length
- Sand the cuts on the nails so that they won't scratch the figure
And there you have it, new base with very strong metal pegs ;-)
hace 1 año
1pt
That looks awesome! I recently got ITEM #331972 who came with a horrible black triangular base that many other Union Creative figures have; it's plain and pokes out in odd angles, making it difficult to position him with other figures (that are not from UC anyway). I'm thinking of making a cover for it, probably out of paper since I don't have any woodworking tools, let alone skills. If the pegs were attached to his feet I'd be more inclined to try something similar to yours.
hace 1 año
1pt
omg i would totally commission you!! i have a figure with a scratched up base and always wondered if something like this was possible
hace 1 año
2pt
kyoshinhei (hace 1 año) #14741261As for transparent bases, i suppose makers avoid selling them because they'd look too plain. If I had to make one myself though, I'd probably try working from a piece of acrylic glass.

I dunno, I'd prefer a transparent base than a plain black or white one.
hace 1 año
0pt
solluxcaptor (hace 1 año) #14740543Wow, amazing! There are many bases I'd love to replace because oversized bases are my biggest pet peeve. ITEM #263893 has a particularly long one that makes her really difficult to display.
Yeah this one would need more work because of that piece the foot is attached too. That will be the focus of the other tutorial I will make for the Wolkenritter figures when I have the time but that's probably not happening before several weeks/months :-(

XRaptor7 (hace 1 año) #14741067Also that figure takes up as much space as a 1/4 figure... it's huge; I agree with you though that the official base is excessively large.
What I've always wanted is those transparent bases you always seen on prototypes but never on the production figures. I guess those would really suck to make though because any faults would be visible throughout.

Yeah it IS huge, even without taking the sword into account. She's supposed to be 1/7 but frankly when I put her next to my other 1/7 she dwarfs them and I think she's seriously leaning towards 1/6. Add to that her posture with the extended leg and the fact she's in mid air and you end up with a very tall figure too.
As for transparent bases, i suppose makers avoid selling them because they'd look too plain. If I had to make one myself though, I'd probably try working from a piece of acrylic glass.

Act (hace 1 año) #14741147I have a broken base I've been needing to either fix or remake and I've been putting it off but this is super helpful.
Out of curiosity, which one?
hace 1 año
1pt
Act (hace 1 año) #14741147Holy shit I would commission you >.>


me2

Awesome work, thanks for sharing. ^_^
hace 1 año
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