Posted by: markfender | October 7, 2015

Watch Me Fail: Setup

Hey, I unpacked my stuff!


Note the Deathjack in the upper left

Already, I’ve identified things I will probably need. Like, I was totally right about that superglue situation. Amazingly, I still have some primer, though. I was not expecting that. I’m also unclear on the paintbrush situation, as most of my brushes have had a hard life (I honestly have never understood paintbrushes. I follow all the advice people give on making them last and within applying about two coats with them, they’ve already taken on an annoying shape that ruins them for future use.) But I’ll probably cross that bridge when it comes to put paint on something.

Why do I own so many metal rulers?

Why do I own so many metal rulers?

So, in that stack of unpainted minis on the table, which one will I pick to paint first?






Ha! It’s a trick question! It’s these:


Those are Silent Death spaceships from the Next Millenium box set that I bought in 199??? I’m currently interested in broadening my horizons from your typical giant shoulderpad 28-25mm heroic figures (and I’m still not over my hatred of painting skulls) into the 15mm or 6mm vehicle format and these will be a good testbed for the techniques that work at that scale. There’s actually more detail than I was remembering on these minis. (I’m not planning on playing Silent Death, even though I do think it’s one of the better “every ship has a graphic representation of its damage profile on a separate sheet of paper and why is that the only method of spaceship combat anyone has seen to devise until the 21st century?” Granted, missiles pretty much ruin that game, but the basics are pretty fun and fast-playing.) The loose pile of ships there are all ones that have had their flight stands break, because flight stands are the DEVIL.

I’m planning on trying out a few different techniques on these ships so don’t expect some sort of coherent schema. And, when I’m done or tired of painting them, they’ll probably just go back in the box they came from until the next time I play Silent Death. So, onward.

Wouldn’t you know that the day I actually unpacked all this stuff, it starts to get cold? So priming will depend on the weather somewhat. I apparently own a can of Duplicolor primer so I’m planning on using that. I’ve found Duplicolor to be a nice primer. For one, it’s cheap (up to 1/3 the cost of Games Workshop or Privateer Press primer), readily available (your local auto shop), and it gives good coverage. I’ve never had it “fuzz” or other annoying things other, more expensive, primers do. Of course, the problem I have is that I live in an apartment, so finding a good place to prime some minis will be difficult. I suppose I could invest in an airbrush, but that’s a pretty big expense. So, we’re sticking with good ol’ spray primer.

My apartment balcony is really narrow (and should be ashamed for even calling itself a balcony). Luckily, I had a box from Amazon that was as wide as the balcony. I would prefer to have an open-air area to prime, but I can make a box work as well.


I broke three more flight stands getting these into the box. Thanks, blood moon.

Of course, the problem with a box stuck in the corner is that I have to rotate the minis periodically to get good coverage. And, when the primer starts to run out, meaning I can only hold the can upright, it means that the minis in the back aren’t getting hit at all. So, rotation also involves moving the minis around the box. And I only managed to point the spray can at myself once! But, if I end up using this box method again, I’m going to invest in a lazy Susan of some kind (Poor Susan – why did she get branded as being the lazy one?)


Ta da! Primed miniatures. A perusal of the embiggened version of this picture will show that some of these ships got terrible coverage…hell, some of them look like they weren’t even touched. Frankly, that’s about what I expect from trying to prime in a box. Likewise, I have a horrific fear of overcoverage and obscuring detail, especially on these tiny things. But, I also don’t plan on painting all of these, so I’ll just pick and choose which ones to actually apply paint to.

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