Wednesday, June 15, 2011

WIP: Terminus Est Gap Filling

Ok, I got an email about using caulk for gap filling so I figured I’d post this up real fast.

By caulking I mean using white acrylic painter’s or white household caulk to gap fill. I don't use greenstuf for gap filling unless there is a need for a structural reinforcement or sculpted detail.

Below you see the port side is caulked and the starboard side is not.

Which side looks better?

I’ve been using caulk on minis as a gap filler for about 10 years. I say that because I don’t want to imply that it is easy to use or best for all tasks, it can be tricky and take time to use well. Since I come from a construction background, I have had literally hundreds of hours working with painter’s caulk and the knowledge to make it work. That said, I don’t think it would take anybody as long as that to try it out and make it work for some projects.

Appropriate: So looking at the Terminus Est here, you see that it is a wonky-looking ship to begin with. As far as BFG goes, gaps on smaller models don’t matter so much to me but bigger ships... the partitioned look really stands out. The three plug in batteries really don’t look seamless unless you kill the gaps and since that is something you want, let’s fill them.

A little goes a long way. Here, a dry brush is used to apply some caulk to gap. A damp brush will be used after this to smooth out the caulk since caulk doesn't stick to damp brushes.

A few suggested guidelines:
  1. Use a dry brush to dab on the caulk you need. A little goes a long way.
  2. Use a damp brush to move the caulk around, pushing caulk into joints.
  3. When you have the gaps filled, use a wet brush to either thin out/remove the extra caulk or use a damp brush to blend in the extra caulk since water thins or reduces caulk. Watch you don't ruin the parts you got right with the clean up.
  4. You can use a pick or razor to remove over flow or extra caulk.
  5. Half dry caulk shreds when you try to push it around so remove it while wet or let it dry and take it off with razor or pick.
  6. Squeeze out a little ball of caulk and put that on the end of the tip of the caulk tube when you are done and that will keep the rest of it wet inside and usable for up to a few months.

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