Monday, June 25, 2012

DIY Paint Rack

Between work, moving and a leaking roof I've been decidely unmotivated to paint anything lately. I started to paint Azhag's wyvern Skullmuncha, then realised that he was so nobbly that I really needed my air brush.Which I didn't have. I also need a new air compressor since I had been using a big 120 PSI 2 HP 24L jobbie and with a new small person in the house that level of noise just wouldn't cut it. I've got the airbrush, but I'm still need the compressor. I've also played about with some test colour for some Kasrkin, but my mojo wasn't working.

Not so good for painting
So I decided some quick hobby projects were on order. The first was really simple: the wallpaper in our sunroom/studio is mightly awfull, so I decided it needed covering. Since we're renting it has to be completely removable. Inspired by Asian bamboo scaffolding, I came up with a super cheap screen.

Paper screen, with some new lamps
It's 10 baboo stakes lashed together with florists/gardeners wire and butchers paper of the top. the bamboo means it's super wonky and the paper is only held on with tape, but if it lasts out the year I'll be happy. It also reduces the fear of air bushing in here since I don't really care if it gets painted.

Bamboo latice
That was a quick and dirty job, but the titular paint rack required a bit more work. I first worked up a design in CAD. I needed it to fit GW and Valejo paints, plus MIG powders and an assortment of inks and oils.

6mm MDF, the gentlemans MDF, with initial markings
In the end I did two designs, one with a wide bottom shelf, and a second with a drawer for oil tubes. The design was in 3mm MDF and the aim was to be simple enough to cut with light power saws with simple straight lines (no CNC here!), to be easy to assemble, sturdy and fit on my bookcase. And not be too ugly.

A not so gentlemanly saw, not the best for straight lines
I first chopped out the sides. I used the corners since then the base would be square. The two corners were taped together back-to-back to allow me to mirror the cut-outs. The first cutting was done using cheap borrowed jig saw. I then hit it with a scroll saw to do the detail. Unfortunately the scroll was also cheap and had a 2mm wander in the blade so the lines weren't quite straight. At this point I thought, stuff it, it's not like I'm a carpenter and I can always make more later.

Then I started on the shelves. And broke the scroll saw blade. It was the last one. Given it was late in the day my options were give up for now, or to say stuff it once more and just use the jig saw. I said stuff it. Using all my powers of bodgery I cut out 13 nearly squared shelf pieces.

Completed, rough but sturdy
Fortunately the design was simple enought at after some judicious chopping and a fair shake of jamming things together and bunch of PVA it came together. And everything fit.

Fits MIG powder pots and larger ink pots
And it fit in my bookcase.

Fits nicely in the shelf, with room for another
All in all I'm fairly pleased with how this turned out. Given my lack of practice and lack of tools the shelf sits flat and is stable and feels sturdy. there is, of course, the question as to wether I pony up and buy some decent tools (a band saw would be good :-), or just keep it ghetto. Not sure yet - might see how I feel next weekend.

I've also put the plans I used here under a copy left licence so they are free to use for non commercial use.  Although I didn't use their work, I was inspired by them, so I feel I should give a shout to who sell paint racks. They are much more polished that mine, but won't fit large bottles or jars. Also a shout out to Roman at Massive Voodoo for getting wrong before me and making sure I put a lip on the front of my shelves.

Deconstruction with missing left side - note the back brace
Parts plan with parts counts

Creative Commons LicenceDIY Paint Rack by James Gorman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Monday, June 4, 2012

New desk, new models

So, a little late again. It's remarkable how much time it takes to unpack things. It doesn't help I'm prone to reorganising things. But! I now have somethings like a workspace set up. It's not completely done yet but it's pretty close.

Workspace, getting set up.

Sadly we're renting so the wallpaper stays. I'm thinking to make some cheap screens with bamboo trellis and butchers paper to reduce the amount of green. On a brighter note, where I'm standing taking the photo is five or six metres of north facing window so plently of daylight when it's not winter. It'll be too hot to keep minis in during summer, so there's a big shelf in the next room for finished and WIP things, and piles of room in the garage for boxes and stuff.

There are a few things that need doing - definately need some sort of paint holding setup - I'm thinking to make something that will hold four rows of paints that I can fit in the shelf where paints are currently just jammed in. This should keep them off the desk and hopefully I can maintain some semblence of order. Hopefully.

I also got the Sevrin Loth Forge World kit for my birthday. Not that I really need new minis, but he is nice. I don't play Red Scorpions, so there'll be a bit of conversion work.

Sevrin Loth de Milo
Fortunately most of the kit doesn't come with a lot of chapter markings. It's based on the command squad kit, so will also be good for bits.

The full kit.
There's a decent banner that's not too scorpion-y, so it'll stay.
Company or chapter banner? Not sure yet.

The scorpion heads will need a bit of work, but they are a good set. The scorpion tail will probably become a crest.

Scorpion heads - a bti of work here

The style fits nice with my current force commander (of as yet unknown rank) so they can become his honour guard. Perhaps a chpatermaster since everone else is pretty down to earth.

The force commander is a Masters of the Chapter guy
with a fancy helmet and backpack.

The torsos continue the theme nicely. They are nicely detailed.

The whole kit came out really well (always nice give FW can be hit and miss). Apart from a few bubbles, the only problem was one of the axes needs the blade filling in which will be a whole lot of no fun.

The left axe will need a little filling in on the blade.

Given that's my only complain I reckon I can be pretty happy. It'll be fun putting these guys together. The parts will also be able to be spread nicely around the army, which is a bonus.