Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Still not making progress

  Just a quick message to say I am not making any progress. The second procedure was a bit problematic and I am supposed to keep my leg above my heart. I have a budget desk chair that does not seem to have this adjustment like the more expensive models. So not making any headway for now, as setting in one spot is not allowed.  ( I did this anyway after the first treatment, but this time the doctor got my attention)   I canceled this weeks visit so I can get up and move about and do something.  Will have to re-schedule sometime in the future.
    I hope to have better progress to report once I get this stupid leg fixed. In case you are wondering- NEVER try and drive 600 miles without stopping. It can cause vein thrombosis which sucks to get fixed.

  In the meantime being bored, playing Skyrim, and watching football.  I killed Lydia, our relationship had turned sour.  She triggered too many traps. While sometimes it is amusing to watch her stumble into a swinging spiked gate over and over again, it is less amusing when she steps on an obvious trigger and drives rusty spikes through the top of my head.  The break point came when I carefully crept past a fortress wall lined with hostile enemy archers, only to look back after clearing the danger and see her pull out her bow and take a shot at one of them!  She died later as I tried to fire my bow at a zombie and she jumped into combat instead of staying out of the line of fire. It was a friendly fire incident, but one I was not grief stricken about.  Finally losing interest with Skyrim, but it is much better than most virtual games.

   Been thinking a bit about what to make in the future. These infantry models have been driving me crazy. Now I am trying to lay out the bits in the sprue and it seems the issue is the space between the parts. Should not be a problem, but it actually is the worst part. The parts you see when you get a model are the empty spaces in the mold that fill up. All the rest of it has to fit together just right. And when you are working with a series of parts with an organic parting line there has to be some sort of transition from one to the next.
     Here are 2 parts in the positions they should be on the sprue. The red is the parting plane where there has to be a good seal, while the green will be the parts obviously. Notice the transition from one part ot the next is quite drastic and very difficult to blend, while too small to simply cut away. I am going to have to lay out the sprue in a variety of ways to minimize this transitional problem before I commit to any cutting.  Once I try out a few layouts I will see what seems to work best.
   If I have a breakthrough I will post some good news.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Parting line close up

  Just wanted to show a close up of an organic parting line. The base metal block has to be milled to the shape of the red area before I can start cutting out the head.  There is some very expensive software that makes this line automatically.  I am writing a lot of this stuff on the blog as a help to others maybe trying to do things on a budget, so I wanted to show a pic of how to part it manually.  It is quite painstaking and gets boring, but it is possible to get a parting line without spending a fortune on software.  Which is good, since I do not have a fortune.

  This mold is taking a long time to design, but as you can see it is far more complex than the others. Each piece has to be carefully looked at and parted. I hope it turns out. I know something will pop out of it, but will it be good enough to offer to others?  I am as curious as any on this.

   I got the Amazon archer back from Shapeways done with the FUD material. Overall it looks pretty good. It is a bit tall. I would share a pic but the stuff is clear and does not show up well in pics. I am going to be getting some more stuff done through them.

  Anyhow, I got to get back to work. More boring surfaces to create through heads and arms.........

Monday, January 9, 2012

Lame excuse for little work

  Ok, here is the plan for the new sprue.  Still really hating doing the parting lines on organics, but I got to do it. I had my minor little thrombosis repair and got the chance to lay around with my leg elevated. Which gave way to Skyrim.........

   Now normally I can only take about 15 minutes of a video game before being bored and walking away. This one I have to say is a work of art and if it is indicative of the direction the industry is headed it is amazing.
   So, whenever I get stuck trying to figure out something in CAD, I can spend a few minutes elevating my leg and being immersed in the virtual world of Skyrim. This game is better than most.  It has even caused me to re-think my aversion to the virtual world.
  This is Lydia, my loyal follower.  No matter how great the danger she springs into action ready to die for me. No matter how stupid my behavior, there are no complaints. She carries my heavy loot out of the dungeon and is equally skilled with bow and blade.  When the Battle-Born brothers from Whiterun sent an assassin after me, she pounced on his ass before I could draw my sword. Most times, I am readying my arrows and she has the enemy laying in a pool of their own blood before I can draw my bow.
   If I were to tell my real friends that I was heading into a cave filled with bloodthirsty ice trolls, they would point out the folly of my actions and refuse to help. Not Lydia,  she agrees with any scheme no matter how idiotic. What a pal.
  Of course she does have an annoying habit of triggering traps, and sometimes I do not WANT her to attack everyone like a berserker. There are times when I am trying to be stealthy and she seems to not grasp the concept very well. This makes me want to push her into a spike filled pit, but then I would have to carry my own loot.  Still, virtual life is not all bad. I have waded across the landscape of Skyrim leaving behind a trail of slain foes and looted locations. 

  But, I had to put it down and get back to work. At least till Wednesday when I get my next treatment. Then I will be floating in a Valium induced haze and Lydia and I will once again bring the pain to those virtual enemies.  I am joining the Stormcloaks and preparing to overthrow the evil empire. 

Not a good reason for failure to deliver the infantry, but better than nothing.

  Will keep you posted on my progress, at least with the models. 

Monday, January 2, 2012

2012 Starts

 Well it is another year. This year I once again am setting unrealistic personal and company goals.
  For my little plastic press, I want to develope the skills to make fully organic models. The sci fi sprue is still in the plotting stage, but it is very close to being ready to start cutting.
  Here is another of the figures and an optional helmet-
 Here are the extras to add a bit of variety to the weapon mix;

  The flamethrower gets a safety helmet if desired.  All of it is sculpted, I just need to lay out the sprue and cut the parting lines.  Plan is to fit 4 models per sprue.

  Doing organics is my main goal for the year. It has always been the final step in the process of learning to make stuff. 2011 was a year of trial and error. My 2 attempts at organic molds failed, one due to CNC problems and the other because the troll had an oversized stomach.  Failure is a strong motivation and it would be nice to finally start knocking out some 28mm multi-pose guys.
   This year is going to be focused on 28mm I think. It seems odd, but one of the main reactions to the 15mm stuff has been requests for the same stuff in 28mm or 6mm. I guess 15mm is the in between scale not well liked.  Looks like some resin stuff is in the works too. I will post more on that later.

   As far as personal goals- becoming the all-being master of time, space and dimension has proven harder than it sounds.  So I am dropping that one this year.  Maybe lose 4 or 5 ounces through diet and exercise. Also, I would like to paint that unit of  elf cavalry.  

  So here we go another year.  Let's all have a happy and prosperous one.