Monday, October 11, 2010

Paint Tweaks: Painting and Depainting Again.

Its time to paint and depaint parts again. I find myself doing this alot, I experiment with different paints, versus metals, and brands to see what the result is in this update.

I have theis pair of aluminum utility arms that I want to repaint. Note the plastic jar is nearly the same R2 blue as we are about to strip.

At this point I've went thru 4 cans of primer, 4 cans of satin white paint, 1 was a dud and nearly all my Krider paint system of 1 can each in blue and purple. I noticed once a can starts to spit paint its done, or only good for a first coat. I tend to paint my larger parts (head, legs) its final white paint with a fresh can for the best finish results.

Man its a long job to resand them with sandpaper.Your talking hours, weeks, doing that. Here is my solution to redoing it.

Get a peanut butter jar that's clean and pour Acetone into it. Make sure you don't smoke and don't keep this under your house, garage or burnable around incase crap hits the fan. Outside put you utility arms into about 6 bucks worth of acetone in a jar for about 1 minute.
Here 30 seconds later the paint unwrapped itself like a skin and separated from the part. Fish it out with a piece of wire and toss it in a tub of hot soapy water to neutralize the Acetone. Repeat this over until the paint is gone on each part.
After 1 minute each the parts come out stripped of R2 blue down to the primer. Which is easily sanded off or you can try another round of doing this again.

Paint David Shaw Octoports. I blue tape all the parts I don't want painted and use a Shane Gibson guitar pic to tamper down the tape everywhere, especially in the corners of the area I'll cut with an x-acto knife.
So then you E-xacto knife that blue tape away from where you plan to paint R2 Blue.
I've heard lot about this Krider blue method of purple and blue paint method. Sometimes you see its blue, other times its purple. From my last batch of paint it looks regular dark blue. But if you shine a flashlight on it and turn the part you see purple everywhere. Freaky! You can't see it in this part pictured but at the right angle you see purple. So the method works I confirmed it.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Skin Updates 2: Cutting Out the AL Back Door

I kinda of dreaded this day for a while and thats why this job hasn't been done yet. Cutting out the full back door inner skin. Its not laser cut I presume as a choice if the builder wants to go full back door or 3/4 route.

So this weekend I decided to make Saturday the day to tackle this project. It lived up to sucking and not being much fun.

So to start I clamped the inner and outer rear skins together using small clamps that are $6 bucks for 144 at office depot. This will be my main guide so I know where to cut the back door.
Then I clamped 2 pieces of L channel as a cutting guide for the my little hacksaw to cut thru. This way you can't go too far off of the guide. You can buy this L channel at Ace, Home Depot, Lowes for cheap. Its handy to have this stocked if you can cause you never know when you need it.You could also use a dremel if you have a steady hand with them and speed this up to cut out the inner skin. You choice and take your own risks with these parts..
Here is one more photo of the mounting the L channel for a cut my cut guide.
Here if the cut after the L channel was removed. Its not as accurate as the laser cut of course but does a decent job. I have to file and maybe put filler in a few places. No big deal I'm happy with that cut. On to the next side.
So repeat cutting out the other side, then proceed to cut out the center. Using a dremel cut an area in the middle and then install the L channel. Insert you hand cutting tool and complete cutting off the back door.
Now with the inner skin mounted and the backdoor cut out it fits after I filed away some parts at the top straight. I still need to life the left and right openings straight. But before I do that I'll focus on mounting the inner skin on this door first. I know this will run into the battery box but still going to do it anyway.
So cool I can open the back door and start the next couple of weeks of finishing all the back side parts to complete this area. But I need to James Bond the battery box to make this happen.So in the end it was a success. I got the inner skin cut out without ruining it. Which you'll find is easy to do!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

A Very Large Amount of Parts Arrive!!!

Awe, the good life. This is just like Christmas in the summer. Everyone of these boxes has R series parts in them. Many of them are very expensive aluminum, and some others are resin parts. Some will be used to finish droid #1 and others will go on droid #2

Part Heaven.

It took a while to open all of these. I often wondered whats inside this package? Most of them where a nice surprise as no way your best Christmas can top this. My build started last March and it was fun as each part arrived or I spent hours making my own parts, but so far nothing topped Summer Christmas Droid Arrival! Its one thing to unwrap Star Wars toys as a little kid, but its a whole another universe unwrapping 1:1 Star Wars parts for a real droid. Nice job on the green shrink wrapping the parts for shipping.

So here is whats new. Legs, feet, boosters, battery straps, ankles, power couplers, ankle diet stuff I think, half moons, shoulder hubs, coin returns. Its alot of stuff. You could nearly retire or buy a nice car when you think about buying these parts. But hey you only live once so live it the best with your droid of your choice.

So here is the break down.
3 feet
3 ankles
1 coin slot
set of half moons

AL parts 
set of legs
set of power couplers
set of battery straps
set of battery boxes
set of shoulder hubs
Plus other items I haven't listed. So R5 is pretty happy at this point. He can finally start driving around in the near future.

Squeaks the cat haz sniffed each prt and no cat smell dtecked that wasnt't hers. She is homeland security of all incoming parts and boxes to inspect. If squeaks detects another cat smell she'll rub her cheecks about 3 times on each section, part, furniture or tree etc... to override that other smell she can sniff we can't with her own. Its cat GPS if you ask me.
R5 looks over his aluminum empire of parts! This is crazy expensive. I'm going to be eating Top Romen for the next decade at this rate. But the good news is all the secondary parts like legs and boosters will be painted black and go to what might be the first imperial droid in Arizona. That droid will need its own black evil blog.
 For now droid #2 home is sitting next to bunch of expensive guitars until I can talk the wife into tossing out another coffee table to make room in the living room. Any musician whos gotten the guitar sickness which is just as expensive as Aluminum Parts Disease A.P.D. you know what kind of crayz money you can spend on a hobby that's car comparable cost wise. A droid in each room of the house isn't too bad either. Note to self. Don't drop the aluminum legs on the red guitar again. However the R2 parts are sitting on top of nearly 100 action figures and the boxes are loaded as is the entire closet full of those small 'cheap' action figure toys. The room is allot of force in it.