Texturing with 2-part Epoxy putties

UPDATED 12/28/08

Ok. On this page I will attempt to show how I putty up joints and add the detail back into the work..

I will use my
West Kenji Godzilla 2005 kit for an example..

First, a quick word about putties.
I use both Aves and MagicSculp.
Some swear by one, or the other. To me, they are basically the same thing.
With both, you take equal amounts of each part and mix together until they have a smooth consistent color.
They will both smooth with water, though the Aves also has something called Safety Solvent which will help keep it soft and workable as you tool it and smooth it.

Personally, I think the Aves is a little smoother, less grainy than the MS.
But the MS is stickier and I feel it tools a bit better after it is cured.

Now, on to the kit and how I work.

Thought it would be good to show the difference between the puttied side, and the unputtied side.
While the kit has very good parts fit, the joints are still very apparent.
West Kenji Godzilla 2005 West Kenji Godzilla 2005

I puttied the one side by mixing up some putty. Then rolling between my hands into a worm. Then I break off pieces and put them in place. Pushing them in, and smoothing them out with my finger.
Then I go in and add texture with a tooth pick.

After it cures, I then prime the work and the kit.
You can't really judge how well you did the work until you see it all together in one consitent color.
Then you can see if joint look good, and your texture matches the rest of the kit.

Well, both sides are puttied and primed now.
Unfortunately, I am not happy with the first side that I did.
West Kenji Godzilla 2005 West Kenji Godzilla 2005
I didn't fill the joint with enough putty and now the transition is very obvious.
This is actually fairly common.
Better to err on the side of being conservative. It is easier to add more putty, than to have to grind down too much of it. And as I said, sometimes it is hard to judge until you see it all primed.

West Kenji Godzilla 2005
And I must have used too much safety solvent, as the detail here really softened up on me.
Sometimes if you get the putty too soft and workable, it willh kind of settle out and smooth down on you as it sets to cure.
I will fix this with a dremel and punch up the detail so the match and look natural.
If you want ot see how I do that, you can check out
this demo.

So, now I will go back over that joint again and show exactly what I did.

West Kenji Godzilla 2005West Kenji Godzilla 2005
First, I add some more putty and smooth it and blend it with the rest of the kit.
You want to look at it from several different angles to make sure you follow the natural contours of the kit.
Also try to make sure that you have nice smooth transitions from the kit, to your putty, and back to the kit again.
Otherwise, it will be very obvious where you did your putty work, and will defeat the purpose of all the work you do next.
West Kenji Godzilla 2005 West Kenji Godzilla 2005 West Kenji Godzilla 2005

Now, for a texture like this, I go back in with a toothpick. While the putty is still soft and workable.
Start at one of the edges and find a groove, and continue it into the putty. Just keep dooing that all the way around your putty work. If you are doing a larger area, you will have to just kind of guess where to put stuff in the middle. But with narrower work, it should be pretty easy and obvious where to go with the texture.

Also, make sure that you vary the width and the depth of your work. That is, unless the kit you are working on has pretty uniform texture. On something like this, for the work to look consistent with the existing texture, it needs to have variety. There are no hard and fast rules. You just have to be kind of artistic about it and do what feels and looks right.

West Kenji Godzilla 2005 West Kenji Godzilla 2005
Hopefully, when you are done.
You get results that look like this.
You might have to go back in and tweak things slightly with a dremel, or a hobby knife. To get things 'just right'.
It is very rare when you will nail it exactly with just texturing the putty when initially applied.