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OCELOTL
07-18-2008, 07:26 PM
Ok, here goes, first off hi I'm new here, my names Gabe. I'm a Graphic artist/tv production guy by day and freelance artist by night. I've been toying around with the idea of making my own line of action figures for a while now but always thought it was way out of my range, that is until I found this sight and saw some things that interested me. The size of the figures ae in t 1:18 scale, so they're about 3 3/4" tall to 4' tall max. I've sculpted before and have a good idea of what I want for articulation. When I get to the point of making molds out of aluminum, I'll use zbrush or maya to create the sculpts needed to be sent off to the cnc software, but I have questions about mold making in aluminum. My questions are simple I guess, but here goes...
1. Is the Micro mill with CNC conversion a good place to start?
If not, why not?, does it not offer good detail, etc.
2. when I do get past question one, besides the Galoub injection moulder, are the ere any other models similar in price range for the homeshop/hobbiest guy like me? Are there any drawbacks to this machine?
3. Ok, now that the plastics are molded, what is a good sonic welder to use that's affordable?
Sorry if some of these are off topic, but some of you might have answers to my questions,

Thanks

Gabe

OCELOTL
07-18-2008, 07:28 PM
Oh yeah, how much would someone charge for something like molding an action figure. A typical figure might have 20 separate pieces, so I guess that would figure into cost as well, unless you can fit maybe 5 pieces per mold block to cut back on aluminum blocks.

Gabe

jalessi
07-18-2008, 07:47 PM
Gabe,

Welcome to the Zone.

Have you checked out resins instead, lots of small production figure makers seem to be doing that.

I would enjoy seeing your work by the way.

Have you talked to the Shiflett Brothers, they belong to a very talented model forum.

http://www.shiflettbrothers.com/gallery.cfm

Jeff Alessi

Harryman
07-19-2008, 11:42 AM
Going the injection molding route would be an investment in time and money that's for sure, great for larger volume but a little pricey up front. Most garage kits are cast like Jeff said.

This is another good resource.

http://www.theclubhouse1.net/

GdeColigny
07-20-2008, 11:55 AM
First... if you are cnc-ing the mold... why not CNC-ing the parts instead...
Second... for limited artsy hand mad action figure... resin is the way to go. Go to some BJD site (ball joint dolls) they are all casted from resin and sale for prices that are absolutely insane.

Now if you want to hit wall mart... go for injection, but don't forget a fake "made in china" sticker, if not they might not want it...

OCELOTL
07-21-2008, 01:39 PM
Gabe,

Welcome to the Zone.

Have you checked out resins instead, lots of small production figure makers seem to be doing that.

I would enjoy seeing your work by the way.

Have you talked to the Shiflett Brothers, they belong to a very talented model forum.

http://www.shiflettbrothers.com/gallery.cfm

Jeff Alessi

Thanks Jeff. I have seen the resin production stuff, which is something I'm going to use at the time that I get to finishing the sculpts for resin model kits, but what I'm looking for is actual action figure type quality on a "mom and pop store" budget. I'm real hands on with stuff and this seems to be a route I'd like to take.

Gabe

OCELOTL
07-21-2008, 01:43 PM
Going the injection molding route would be an investment in time and money that's for sure, great for larger volume but a little pricey up front. Most garage kits are cast like Jeff said.

This is another good resource.

http://www.theclubhouse1.net/

Thanks harryman, like I mentioned below, I want to start my own action figure line, and mass producing things with aluminum molds seems to be the way to go. And yes your right, the clubhouse is a great resource for info, glad I found it last year. Thanks to that site, I've set my sights in this direction.

Gabe

OCELOTL
07-21-2008, 01:48 PM
First... if you are cnc-ing the mold... why not CNC-ing the parts instead...
Second... for limited artsy hand mad action figure... resin is the way to go. Go to some BJD site (ball joint dolls) they are all casted from resin and sale for prices that are absolutely insane.

Now if you want to hit wall mart... go for injection, but don't forget a fake "made in china" sticker, if not they might not want it...

Thanks GdeColigny, I'm gonna check on those BJD sites. Wouldn't i be easier to plastic inject molds to get the parts instead of cncing the parts individually? Time wise and clean up wise?

Gabe