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Where do i start, help please.

 
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count_zero99uk
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 04 Dec 2008
Posts: 79

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 1:03 pm    Post subject: Where do i start, help please. Reply with quote

Hi all,

Im looking at starting to get miniatures for this wonderful game. I currently own Fed Commander : Acadamy but will be upgrading it to Klingon Border by buying the Graduation Pack.

I would be gratful if you could let me know what Minature pack i need to get to cover this and also what paints/equipment you would recomend.

Ive never painted minatures before so full details of brushes paints etc would be great.

Im based in the UK so if you could let me know UK available products that would be great as well.

Finaly what would you recomend to carry the completed minis around in i dont know if the boxes they come in are suitable for transport if they arnt what should i use.

Kind Regards
Zero.
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Scoutdad
Commodore


Joined: 09 Oct 2006
Posts: 4470
Location: Middle Tennessee

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 1:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If yoiu're looking to obtain miniatures for all of the ships in FC: Klingon Border, then Border Box #1 is your best bet. It contains all of the minis for the ships in FC:KB, plus it's cheaper than buying them all individually.
After that, Border Box #2 covers FC: Klingon Attack, Border Box #3 covers FC:Romulan Border, and so on... all the way up to Border Box #8 which covers FC: Orion Attack.

As for paints and brushes... you'll get a lot of differing opinions here. I typically use only water based acrylics, but a lot of others use only enamel paints. Both work, and they use similar techniques... I guess it's all a matter of preference there. Some people recommend that you only use Citadel paints, some recommend only Vallejo brand, etc. I tend to use the cheaper, mass-market versions of the regular craft paints available at Walmart (i.e., CeramCoat, Folk Art, Apple Barrel, etc.) with good results [follow the links in my signature to see what I mean]. These come 4 ounces to the bottle, at $95 cents a bottle!
Brushes are anpother matter altogether. Everyone will agree that you should start with a high-quality brush. Nothing will ruin a paint job like a cheap, stiff-bristle brush. I use two sizes - a #3 round and a #10 for detail work, but there are hundreds of sizes available. Again, experiment with different sizes and go with what feels best for you.
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Scoutdad
Commodore


Joined: 09 Oct 2006
Posts: 4470
Location: Middle Tennessee

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 1:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Second Part:

After you've selected your paints and your brushes... you're still not ready to paint...

All of the ADB (and any other brand) minis should be prepped before painting.
This starts with a thorough washing with soap and water to remove any mold release agent that may remain on the mini. Nothing sucks worse than finishing a great looking starship... only to have the paint peel loose during play because of an oily film on the miniature itself.

Next, a small file or sanding stick should be used to remove any flash or mold lines. Regardless of how fine they are on the bare mini, paint will amplify them 1000 times...

Any pock-marks or divots should be filled in with some type of putty as well, at this stage. Testors makes a fairly decent, relatively inexpensive putty that dries quickly and sands easily.

Finally - the miniature needs a coat of primer to help the paint stick.
Again, opinions here vary...
I use generic, automotive primer from Walmart, but a lot of others only use Citadel or Armoury brand. Color is the same... some use black, some white, some gray. I use all three, depending on the base color of the miniature itself. I use black primer for Orions and Tholians, Grey primer for Gorns, and white for everything else... just because those colors seem to bring out the intended base color best.

Carrying cases:
Many miniature companies make cases specifically designed to carry miniatures and they range from $20 to $200, depending on the size and configuration.
Again, I've gone the cheap route. With just ovr 700 SFB/FC miniatures - I can't afford to go expensive! Wink
I found some plastic organizers in the sporting goods section of Walmart that were less than $5 each. Those, combined with some of the foam from the miniatures boxes provide a safe, secure, easy way to store / transport my miniatures. I have 3 boxes like this for the Feds and Klingons, and 2 boxes for each of the other empires. Whenever I go to game, I just take the boxes needed for that session and the rest stay on my bookshelf - safe and sound.

I hope these posts have helped. If you have any additional questions, feel free to ask away...
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count_zero99uk
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 04 Dec 2008
Posts: 79

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 3:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks again Scoutdad your advice has been brilliant. May be a few months ill be able to post some of my attempts Smile

I have some good model shops and gaming shops in my local area so they should be able to provide the things you have mentioned.

Thanks again for your help, these boards look like a nice and friendly place to be.

Regards
Zero.
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Scoutdad
Commodore


Joined: 09 Oct 2006
Posts: 4470
Location: Middle Tennessee

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 3:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

count_zero99uk wrote:
...these boards look like a nice and friendly place to be.

Regards
Zero.

we try! Smile
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Mike
Captain


Joined: 07 May 2007
Posts: 1563
Location: South Carolina

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 8:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey, we're some of the friendliest guys around!
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djdood
Fleet Captain


Joined: 01 Feb 2007
Posts: 2927
Location: Seattle, WA

PostPosted: Thu Dec 11, 2008 2:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

count_zero99uk-
Welcome to the coolest part of the board, in my opinion Wink

You can go back through the thread here on this board and find a ton of useful stuff (including gems from folks who don't post much anymore).

There's more detail in my older posts, but my basic materials/methods (very similar to my pal scoutdad's version):
- Cut, file, and sand any flash and mold-lines from the mini
IMHO opinion, this is the step where great minis start [or die] - an amazing paint job doesn't look like much with nasty ridges from the mold-seams showing through it. A hobby knife, an emery board, and time is all it takes.
- Fill any defects with putty.
I use "greenstuff" 2-part epoxy putty now, but I've used Testors tube-putty in the past and still do for small and/or quick problems.
- Tweak/change mini as-desired.
Add phasers for refits, remove phasers for MY-versions, etc. - light kit-bashing kind of stuff.
- Wash and scrub mini with grease-cutting dish soap and warm water.
- Allow to dry thoroughly.
- Prime mini
I usually do them in batches, using Tamiya white spray primer.
- Basecoat mini.
I use an airbrush. It used to be a cheap Testors (Aztec) plastic airbush and "canned air", but now I use a nice "professional" Badger airbrush with a mini-compressor (but only because I got an incredible deal - the cheap one was doing a fine job for me).
I use Model Master gloss enamel paints, with occasional forays into other brands when I can't find or mix a color I want in Testors - I'm trying to find bottle colors I can use without custom-mixing for as many empires as I can. I always use gloss paints, as this makes it easy to apply water-slide decals later and they stay put and don't "silver".
Again, I do the minis in batches to keep from having to constantly switch colors and clean the airbrush.
- Let basecoat cure.
I let them sit for 2-3 days, unless I have good sunlight they can sit and bake and offgas in, which can cut that down considerably.
- Add detail painting (I do all the details [engines fins, coolers, grilles, windows, hatches, etc.) in Tamiya acrylics, brushed on with high quality brushes. Cheap brushes ruin pain jobs. Yet again, I do them in batches, since empires tend to use the same colors for th same details on all the ships. This means I can do all the details in a certain color on 10-15 ships before cleaning my brush(es) and switching colors.
It's usually best to do "over-painting" like this in a different kind of paint to keep the thinner in the paint from attacking your basecoat (acrylic over enamel, or vice-versa).
- Let details cure (again, usually a multi-day timespan).
- Wash and weather mini (too involved to go into detail here; basically tinted "magic wash" and some dry pastels).
- Let wash cure.
- Apply decals (either purchased or home-made) and allow to dry. Again this is more involved than an over-view post can do justice to [this board has some great threads on decals].
- Clear-coat mini. This last step is often skipped by some folks and that's a shame. Clear-coat keeps all your hard work protected from wearing or chipping off in handling or on the game table, as well as sealing-on any decals you've applied. A dull (or matte coat, my preference) also cuts the toy-like shine from the paint and make the mini look more realistic in-scale.

I use cases similar to scoutdad's (I used to use the exact ones he recommends). I recently switch to slightly deeper cases with adjustable inner walls to give my minis a bit more protection while moving around. Foam-inserts are a must in any kind of case that will travel. Minis lose parts all-to-easily when bouncing around in cases.
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Scoutdad
Commodore


Joined: 09 Oct 2006
Posts: 4470
Location: Middle Tennessee

PostPosted: Thu Dec 11, 2008 3:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

djdood wrote:
Welcome to the coolest part of the board, in my opinion Wink
I agree with that statement

Will wrote:
There's more detail in my older posts, but my basic materials/methods (very similar to my pal scoutdad's version):

See! Differing opinions already... but since I posted first, my advice trumps Will's! Cool
Will wrote:
- Cut, file, and sand any flash and mold-lines from the mini
IMHO opinion, this is the step where great minis start [or die] - an amazing paint job doesn't look like much with nasty ridges from the mold-seams showing through it.

OK, we agree that this is the most important initial step
Will wrote:
- Fill any defects with putty.
I use "greenstuff" 2-part epoxy putty now, but I've used Testors tube-putty in the past and still do for small and/or quick problems.

Dang! I wish I'd suggested that. I too, use the 2-part putty now, but for quick, simple repairs - the Testors brand works well.
Will wrote:
- Tweak/change mini as-desired.

Now he's just showing off. I was going to let you get some plain-jane, vanilla minis under your belt before I suggested kit-bashing or physical modification - but not Will... he goes right for the heart of the matter.
Adding / Changing detail in sometimes a key part in making the exact mini you need.
Take the Klingon D7 / D6 mini for example. The mini sold by ADB is the D7, but to make a D6 - you simply need to file/sand off a couple of waist phasers before priming/painting. It's one of the easier conversions out there. Others require a bit trickier mods... such as adding phasers or weapon ports, etc. But for the most part, 99% of your minis will be straight out of the box.
Will wrote:
- Wash and scrub mini with grease-cutting dish soap and warm water.

I usually wash mine beore anything is done... and then again just before priming.
Will wrote:
I usually do them in batches, using Tamiya white spray primer.

Good point. I also do mine in batches. Typically, I do 15 to 20 of the same race at the same time... for just the reasons Will states. It's far easier to paint the orange nacelles on 15 Federation cruisers one after another, while the orange paint is open and on the brush than it is to do one in Orange, clean-up, and then come back to orange later for a second mini. Mulitply this by 6 or 7 detail colors on 10 or 12 different minis and you can save a lot of time.
Will wrote:
- Basecoat mini... use an airbrush.

Another good point. You can brush the base coat on, but an inexpensive airbrush does a much neater, much faster job of it. Some simple, single-action, external mix airbrushes can be found for less than $20.
I wouldn't attempt to use one of them to airbrush an intricate design on the hood of my Mustang - but they can't be beat for base coating minis.
Will wrote:
I use Model Master gloss enamel paints...

See, I told you. I use acrylics and avoid the enamels like a plague. In fact, if Will lived less than 2300 miles from me, I've got several bottles of the exact paints he uses that I'd give to him... just to get them out of my paint cabinet!
Will wrote:
- Let basecoat cure.
I let them sit for 2-3 days...

Another good rason to use acrylics. Once I finish base coating a batch with acrylics... they are ready to detail in about 1 hour - although I usually give them 2, just to be safe.
Will wrote:
- Wash and weather mini (too involved to go into detail here; basically tinted "magic wash" and some dry pastels).

Once you've learned he basics of painting, we'll be glad to educate you on shading, washing, and weathering...
Will wrote:
- Apply decals (either purchased or home-made) and allow to dry. Again this is more involved than an over-view post can do justice to [this board has some great threads on decals].

I concur...
Will wrote:
- Clear-coat mini. This last step is often skipped by some folks and that's a shame. Clear-coat keeps all your hard work protected from wearing or chipping off in handling or on the game table, as well as sealing-on any decals you've applied. A dull (or matte coat, my preference) also cuts the toy-like shine from the paint and make the mini look more realistic in-scale.

Will is most definitely correct here. I always clear coat my minis with a matte finish. Usually, 2 or 3 light coats. I won't say that I've never had any paint chipped off... but in 20 years of gaming with some of these minis - it hasn't happened often. I have received more mini damage from dropped minis than from everything else combined.
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KJ
Ensign


Joined: 28 Dec 2007
Posts: 24
Location: Riverside, CA

PostPosted: Thu Dec 11, 2008 4:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

One other thing that will make your minis easier to transport (and I know not everyone will want to do this) is to affix small (2-4mm diameter) rare earth magnets to the top of the flying post and the underside of the miniature (where the peg would normally insert into the miniature). If you take your ships away from home to use them, chances are you will have a few of them break off the stands over time, and this heads off that problem before it occurs. It also makes the ships easier to store in lower-profile cases/ foam liners. I do this for most of my spaceship minis, my 1:285 aircraft, and just about anything else that needs to be on a flying stand that gets used for gaming.

The magnets themselves are inexpensive (15 to 25 cents per), and should be easy to track down (maybe even at your local hobby shop).
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Paul B
Lieutenant SG


Joined: 27 Dec 2006
Posts: 189

PostPosted: Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For my miniatures I'm using some "magnetic adaptors" that Ninja Magic produced. Basically they magnetically attach two components, one of which is glued to the ship and the other to the flight stand. This allows a ship to be stored without its stand attached (and also allows for only a few stands to be used for many ships).

A lot of my carrying methods are as described in other posts, but lately I've also gotten some nice boxes with "pick and pluck" foam which is basically foam cut into a bunch of squares where you pull out squares to put your miniatures in there. I'm not sure if I'm allowed to post links to stores or not on this forum, but if you google "Figures in Comfort" you should come up with a UK-based outfit. I bought a bunch of cardboard boxes with foam in them for like, 10 bucks per box, and they work great for my Flames of War armies. I plan to get more for my Federation Commander Fleets as well.
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pinecone
Fleet Captain


Joined: 03 May 2008
Posts: 1865
Location: Earth

PostPosted: Thu Dec 11, 2008 1:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't use minis myself but if I'm not mistaken doesn't squadron box 1, 2, and 3 hold whats in klingon border and border box 1 cover the boosters?
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djdood
Fleet Captain


Joined: 01 Feb 2007
Posts: 2927
Location: Seattle, WA

PostPosted: Thu Dec 11, 2008 7:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Border boxes are more cost-effective (more minis per £ or $).
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Paul B
Lieutenant SG


Joined: 27 Dec 2006
Posts: 189

PostPosted: Fri Dec 12, 2008 1:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

djdood wrote:
Border boxes are more cost-effective (more minis per £ or $).


Assuming of course you want all the miniatures. Personally I only tend to buy figs for the fleets I play.
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markgeorgetwo
Lieutenant Commander


Joined: 21 Nov 2006
Posts: 339
Location: london england

PostPosted: Sat Dec 13, 2008 6:17 pm    Post subject: post subject Reply with quote

dear count-zero99uk like you iam from the uk from london and welcome to this forum has well. if you want to order federation commander products i would suggest leisure games they are on the web Cool and from star fleet games it self
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count_zero99uk
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 04 Dec 2008
Posts: 79

PostPosted: Sat Dec 13, 2008 10:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

thansk for the info ill have a look.
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