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Tale of Four Walders
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johnnyhaggis



Joined: 10 May 2006
Posts: 540
Location: Ancient Rome

PostPosted: Thu Apr 03, 2008 5:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cool! That's the best photo of Shadow Walder I've ever seen! I wish there had been a really good closeup of the head somewhere so that someone would be inspired to make bootlegs of it at least!
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Jackmagic



Joined: 16 Sep 2007
Posts: 159
Location: Chester Virginia

PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 5:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks so much to Hypno for his large resolution scans. I have resized them here:



From what I can tell it appears that Shadow is wearing sunglasses that are fused onto the side of his head (no ears). Yes, Shadow is wearing "shades." He has a short flat nose and a protruding lower jaw. It appears that he has two sets of teeth stacked on top of each other, or a lower membrane under his mouth. It's very hard to tell, but I have sketched some ideas of what he was supposed to look like:



Okay, the next step is to make a sculpt that we could convert into a resin replacement head...
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r0b0t_3ars



Joined: 24 Feb 2008
Posts: 44
Location: East of Eden

PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 4:57 am    Post subject: Shadow Reply with quote

Shocked ............................................................................................

I dno whether to smile or cry. Happy that we finally get to realize the awesomeness of this sculpt, sad that it has never been produced.

Quote:
Okay, the next step is to make a sculpt that we could convert into a resin replacement head...


hopefully this comes to pass, or if someone can convince Takara that they were dead wrong. Either way, thanks for this jack.
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hypnotator



Joined: 10 May 2006
Posts: 1525

PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 10:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like your sketches, and your blow ups are even clearer than my scans, but thatís still a weird, inscrutable sculpt you want to interpret. A friend once remarked that he thought the Shadow head was like a larger version of the KWII inner brain head. It isnít much, but that ďmouthĒ looks a bit like the ďmouthĒ area on the brain. It looks like a plankton filter. The nose is hard to make out, and I prefer your sketch where the nose is minimal. This head is the least human looking of the four.

So you plan to create this head in resin? Iím currently doing some casting in clear resin and Iím pleased with the results so far. I thought about reproducing the Evil head, but the problem I foresee is that a clear resin head is not hollow or flexible, so how will it fit to the body? The only way around this that I can think of is to cast the head around the neck stump and inner brain, which involves suspending them in the mould in just the right position as the resin dries. This is tricky but it should be achievable. You would only get one shot at it, though, and if it came out wonky you would need a whole new neck and brain to try again. Maybe you have thought of another method.

You would presumably be using a 99 body to tint black and a KWII to rob the guts and brain from, or you might get away with casting these.

What do you use to sculpt? Clay? Pleistocene?
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BAZ



Joined: 11 May 2006
Posts: 1281
Location: HELL

PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 2:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmmmmm......................
Top row, third from left sketch looks like Bruce Forsyth.
Or Jimmy Hill!!!
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GUYx1
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Joined: 10 May 2006
Posts: 1493

PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 5:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote




Bazza, the resemblence is terrifying indeed.
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Neutron X



Joined: 27 May 2006
Posts: 924

PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 7:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

NIce sketches
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Jackmagic



Joined: 16 Sep 2007
Posts: 159
Location: Chester Virginia

PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 1:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

hypnotator wrote:
I like your sketches, and your blow ups are even clearer than my scans, but thatís still a weird, inscrutable sculpt you want to interpret. A friend once remarked that he thought the Shadow head was like a larger version of the KWII inner brain head. It isnít much, but that ďmouthĒ looks a bit like the ďmouthĒ area on the brain. It looks like a plankton filter. The nose is hard to make out, and I prefer your sketch where the nose is minimal. This head is the least human looking of the four.

So you plan to create this head in resin? Iím currently doing some casting in clear resin and Iím pleased with the results so far. I thought about reproducing the Evil head, but the problem I foresee is that a clear resin head is not hollow or flexible, so how will it fit to the body? The only way around this that I can think of is to cast the head around the neck stump and inner brain, which involves suspending them in the mould in just the right position as the resin dries. This is tricky but it should be achievable. You would only get one shot at it, though, and if it came out wonky you would need a whole new neck and brain to try again. Maybe you have thought of another method.

You would presumably be using a 99 body to tint black and a KWII to rob the guts and brain from, or you might get away with casting these.

What do you use to sculpt? Clay? Pleistocene?


I think you are right about it being a large version of the "chicken head," as well as the plankton filter.

I like your idea about suspending the brain inside the casting. That would be worth trying if Walder II figures were cheap and plentiful. My idea was just to do a "quick and dirty" casting of the head and just painting it a solid opaque glossy black (on a tinted 99 body with swapped Walder innards), not the most elegant solution, but since it would just be a customized interpretation of the unproduced figure it would do.

I can sculpt in clay but I've never done anything as small as a 1/6 scale head before. I'm still trying to figure out what to do next.

Are you going to reproduce copies of your "Evil" head? Sign me up!
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hypnotator



Joined: 10 May 2006
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 8:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Are you going to reproduce copies of your "Evil" head?


As you say, if KWIIs were cheap and plentiful. But they aren't, especially here in the UK. In order to do a proper transparent one with an inner brain, I would have to do the suspended upside down trick I described. That would mean I couldn't just knock out a few heads and sell them for people to use; I would have to have the whole figure and sell it customised. Plus there is the high risk factor that if a cast goes wrong (and they do), a whole figure would be written off.

But take heart... I am working on a totally different head casting project. It's a secret, though, so shhhh.

If anyone has tips on how to home cast hollow vinyl pieces, I'm interested to learn.
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GUYx1
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Joined: 10 May 2006
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

okay,

here is what the process is. (soft resin can be used in place of vinyl, but you will still know the difference)

What you need to do is make a silicone mold of the modern KWII "chicken brain" and cast it with "HYDROSPAN" EXPANDING resin.
When it is the proper size
compare to the pix that Hypno provided and stop enlarging it.



then make a new silicone mold and recast in resin.
Use the chicken brain, clear resin, hollow it out a bit, buff it, then use smoke colored paint.

MEGO customizers do this all the time. I could have a mego guy do it, but the world moves at a different pace , would take 6 months to a year for something like that.

At any rate, read below for the details on how to do it yourself.

http://www.industrialpolymers.com/water_abs_expanding_urethanes.html

PS - please put me down for one when you start making them. I will ante up the funds.
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Last edited by GUYx1 on Mon Apr 14, 2008 6:59 pm; edited 3 times in total
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hypnotator



Joined: 10 May 2006
Posts: 1525

PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 9:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmmm that stuff looks good for making big chicken heads, but itís the ďsoft resinĒ that you mention that I want to know about. Are you saying, Guy, that your Mego customising contacts have actually produced hollow, pliable, transparent heads? Iím new to this game, but the transparent resin that Iíve been using can be cast in latex moulds, which are easy to make, and it colour tints nicely, but it sets rock solid. It can be drilled and sawed but the surface where you do so tends to go opaque.

Iíd be happy to start producing Evil head replicas in different transparent colours, but thereís no way you could hollow these out to fit them on a figure. They need to be hollow, with a fairly thin wall, and pliable.

So far Iíve only used latex moulds. You mention silicone, though. Is this the stuff Iíve seen that you buy in rubber granules and melt in a pan? Is this needed for casting soft resin? Does the resin have to be cast solid and carved out to make it hollow? Does the transparent surface remain transparent when carved?

Vinyl is presumably cheaper and easier to produce than hard plastic, hence all the alternative heads and cartoony vinyl figures on the market, but can it actually be cast at home? What are the moulds made of? Steel? Iíd love to know what facilities the producers of Elquebird and Secret Base heads and costumes have at their disposal, and whether I could ever hope to join their game. Iíd like to have a go at doing my own designs and sculpts, too.
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GUYx1
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Joined: 10 May 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 5:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

VINYL CHEAPER?
VINYL cannot be produced at home. it is HIGHLY TOXIC. Usually produced only in special factories. I worked in a plastics factory and the vinyl parts were shipped in.

No, everybody uses resin hard heads.
A few use laytex or silicone heads, but they SUCK.
they tear, and paint will not adhere well. too soft.
Plastics factorys use Injection molded Aluminum molds.
Otherwise the rubber molds break down after so many casts.

Garage kit makers use rubber or silicone molds.
the Japanese customizers in the 1990's TRIED to make clear silicone costumes for cyborg.
Silicone, like the thick rubbery glue you use to attach bathroom tiles.
If you translate the japanese text, it said that the suits would often tear.
Hense I would rule out making a silicone head.


The mego people are not any further than you, they just have a big communal collective way of doing it.
Usually there is a drive to get new heads for the community once a year and people send in $$$ and heads to be enlarged so that the whole group will have some cool heads to customize with.
Did you try buffing and polishing the hell outta the clear resin?

SOft resin is not at all pliable per say. Just cuts easier.
probably damages easier as well. I have no clue.
It is still solid, yet it feels lighter and more like a vinyl head than a solid chunka resin.
I don't know anything about the process.

I just paid people who were competent in the process to do it. an Artist friend told me about the soft resin , but it is not common. I have only seen it a handfull of times. people prefer the hard as nails resin for some reason.

You would swear it was vinyl, but when you see it is solid and NOT HOLLOW, you know something is up.
it did not dremmel the same as vinyl either.
What I saw was a solid reddish color and painted.


The Soft Resin - it looks like vinyl and sorta feels like vinyl, but it is NOT vinyl.
The soft vinyl parts I have were purchased were from HK or Thailand. If you had a $10,000 injection molding machine and aluminum molds, you could make a hollow head, but most people do just the same garagekit casts as with your resin heads.

Not sure if you can even get it in transparent form. It might be. I dunno for sure.
You will have to check out the different specs between Epoxy, Polyester and PVC resins. as of this moment, I can find mention of soft resin, but not where to obtain it.

if you go south of the boarder, they are more flexible with pvc production.
You could get a team of underage workers to help you...
There is a Mexican 1/6 scale fellow on ebay - he casts items in PVC.
The items look like bootleg mexican JOHNNY WEST toys, but he can create SOLID pvc heads. They are kinda weird, really heavy and tough to paint in detail,, but they are pvc.
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Guy


Last edited by GUYx1 on Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:00 pm; edited 1 time in total
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hypnotator



Joined: 10 May 2006
Posts: 1525

PostPosted: Fri Apr 11, 2008 9:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, Guy. As usual, you are the man who knows things.

When I said vinyl was cheaper to produce, I only meant cheaper than the hard plastic that constitutes the rest of a Henshin Cyborg figure. I assume this because there are all those vinyl costumes and heads being done by small companies. There are also the Walder Monsters and Invaders Takara did to go along with Neo HC, which I consider lip service to providing enemy figures for him.

It doesnít surprise me that I would need a factory set up to produce vinyl. So it looks like my desire to do some hollow alternative KWII heads is just a pipe dream. I might still try the solid resin cast around an upside down neck and brain someday. Hey Guy, you remember when I got that NHC lot? I picked out the ones I didnít have rather than getting the job lot. I should have taken them all and used the spares for customizing.

So these Mego custom heads are solid? How do they fit into the bodies? I remember the bona fide soft plastic heads were a wrestle to remove and put back. Do you slit the torso plastic to get them in?
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GUYx1
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 11, 2008 2:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hypno. I would do better to pay you NOW for one of your clear hard resin heads.
The Whole mego resin thing is rather ongoing and complicated.
Initially Paul Clarke (best mego guy around) started the Dr.Mego site.
This site can be viewed freely by the public.
The site features hordes of HK made Jumpsuits and mego accessories in many colors. He also has dozens & dozens of colored resin cast hero heads with a head nub similar to a mego nub. You would heat up the mego torso in boiling water and just pop it in.

Dr Mego also sells his own FACTORY made HIGH QUALITY PVC reproductions of the mego body. A little heavier, but a lot harder to break.

His heads are cast in colors, so minimal painting skills are needed.
really slick to make your own figures. This website inspired ROBOT CHICKEN and Dr.Mego is listed in the credits.
He basically bootlegged items in resin until he could do it legally and now makes the highest quality carded mego reissues around, with factory made rotocast vinyl heads. He is currently producing Startrek, Planet of the apes & Night of the living dead. However this only works as long as someone is financing the liscense. He has to pay out of his own pocket for the rest. If it fails, he could lose his house.
After seeing what he did (initially he carefully sidestepped the liscensing issues, but now he only sells liscensed items on his website)
Other websites tried to immitate him, in a no holds barred manner.
Before he had the financial backers to make trek & apes, Dr Mego received a Cease and Decist letter when he started selling full mego reproductions with resin heads on his own MIB.
While Paul has a good attitude about it all, the OTHER websites were scared shiteless and went into utter LOCKDOWN mode.

I generally push things WELL BEYOND the limits, so perhaps tiny orders work better.
BE FORWARNED THAT THOUGH FULLY AUTOMATED, NONE of the websites featuring resin products are prepared to handle sizable orders in the wa
Each item is cast individually, so it can take much longer than expected. While the 1/6 sale sites mass produce character heads, Mego sites produce custom items ON DEMAND and are highly suspicious of legal entanglements.

Dr Mego has mass quantities of most items on hand. He takes 2-3 weeks for an order, but really special stuff sometimes takes a bit.
The other websites are AT LEAST a month for the basic off the website stuff. Depends on the seller.



The trick is learning to work within the system. Trading with people who have half done customs or have extra parts they were traded.

The Newer (in the garage) based companies do some amazing work.
They prefer to use rounded nub heads like a Dr Evil doll.
THat way the nub is never inserted into the torso. However you never know the head size until you receive it. Hense the NEED for Mego conventions.
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Guy


Last edited by GUYx1 on Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:09 pm; edited 2 times in total
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hypnotator



Joined: 10 May 2006
Posts: 1525

PostPosted: Fri Apr 11, 2008 2:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmm looks like the quality of sculpt varies considerably.

I have experienced similar collecting Aurora model kits. Quite often a dealer has an incomplete kit and promises to recast the missing parts. I have learned from bitter experience not to part with my money on such vague promises. Casting parts is tricky, time consuming, and you need a burning incentive to finish the job. Once the money is paid, the incentive just evaporates.

Nice to see the custom Deathlok. I was obsessed with the charcter as a child and tried to make my own custom from a "Daredevil" figure (not the superhero Daredevil, but an action figure range similar in scale to Big Jim). What a mess. I wanted to improve on the original design by having a transparent panel with his brain showing. I could do it easily now.
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