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Tusken RTT

Adding the kidney shim- not bad but..........

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Needed to extend the kidney plate a bit to meet up with the ab plate.   

 

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I had been saving my shavings as I went along in preparation.

 

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Glued my inner shims first than matched up as best a I could the outer shims.  

 

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Added my acetone to the shards after taping up the seam.  After the mix started to get like syrup (about 15 minutes of stirring) I poured it on the crack.  

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I let it set up overnight before sanding and polishing.  

 

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After the cleaning up a little, with a long way to go still (and cutting my kidney notch), the seam is completely smooth, but in some areas along the seam I can still see it!  I hate to repeat this process.  Any ideas?  I was thinking about running a thin line of paint (trying to match as best I can) along the lines I can still see, then really polishing it down to blend in.  If done again, I know I can paste it thicker and wider on the seam and then sand down, but I was hoping to not to see the paste like I would if I went that route.  Appreciate any tips!

 

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Edited by Tusken RTT
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Definitely going to be following this thread.

 

Just curious, but what armour are you shimming and by how much ?

 

I only ask as I will need to shim my TM Troopermaster armour by about 8 inches (4 each side), my plan is to reduce the size of the shim as I hopefully reduce the size of my waist :)

 

Art

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Very interesting !  It's one of the next steps for me, thanks to do it just before me so I can watch  and learn  :popcorn:

 

It doesn't seem to bad after the first layer, but with the second it should be ok.  Did you do the 2 sides at the same time ?  How much time did you wait before sanding ?  What do you use for sanding ?

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It is an AP kit;  I went with 2 inches on each side.  I could have squeezed in one inch but I figured if you are having to hide the seam anyway go ahead and be comfortable.  

 

I waited overnight to begin the sanding the first time.  This second round I let the paste sit up overnight and it actually came out a lot better.  I put more shards in a shot glass, barely covered them w the acetone and then covered the shot glass with foil.  When I woke up I stirred it and it was ready to be applied, which I did w a small brush.  

 

I used med grit to sand first to just knock down the rough stuff, as I taped off the clean edges so they did not get scratched too badly.  Then used the fine grit (220) then the novus 3 and 2.   It is no picnic for sure! Think I may bust out the power tools this time around for the sanding and buffing. 

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By brush you mean what, a paintbrush, a toothbrush ?

 

So for example tonight I put the acetone and ABS shards in a glass jar, cover it, and tomorrow morning I stir it and apply it.  And tomorrow evenig I'd be ok to sand.  Did I understand correctly ?

 

Can't find a store that sells Novus ...  I'll have to check for that.

 

Thanks !

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Small paintbrush.  Really pressed hard into the seam the second time, that may have been why it still showed in spots after the first attempt, as I just kind of brushed it on lightly.   

 

That should be perfect for time between application and sanding.   Good luck!  Hopefully you will nail it one the first attempt.  

 

I got the Novus kit online from the spa store- got here in 2 days on regular shipping! 

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OK, so live and learn;  definitely not a quick process, but I think I am getting the hang of it.  

 

Dont use medium grit;  it simply removes the paste you put on and you are back where you started.  After I sanded down on round 2, I could see the seam peeking through again.  

 

So I added another coat of paste, a little wider to allow me to sand with fine grit only, starting on the outer edges of the paste to allow the seam to be the thickest part of the paste after I am through.  Very tiring and tedious.

 

So I started with what looked like this for round 3-

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And after 30 minutes or so of sanding got down to this-

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So making some progress;  a lot of sanding with finer grits of sandpaper still to do, but I have to go to work, so off to the hardware store tonight to get super fine grit.  I'm using 220 now but will get some whatever is between that and 1000.  Then comes the polishing, but I think there will be a successful end to this part of the project by the weekend!   I know of course it does not look good now, but again, still much work to do to get it smoothed out and polished up.  Will post more pics as it moves along. 

Edited by Tusken RTT

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I use 400 sandpaper for sanding the edges and it's very soft after a while.

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Started with the 220;  now time to move to the finer stuff.  A couple of divets need attention to, but the gap is slowly vanishing.  I have been slowed down a bit by work so only get a few minutes here and there to scrub on this baby.  

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Looking very good! Excellent attention to detail. Some of those final holes can still be sanded out as they are a result of the new ABS poured in vs the first layer. You just have to feel it out though, excellent job, this could even be a tutorial with a little more work and details.

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Wow ! Almost done, it will look seamless with a little more sanding and maybe some small hole-filling. I hope I will be able to do as good as you.

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Not 100% when you get up close to it, but I had to get on with the suspension so I am going with this right now.  Pretty happy with it, just frustrating that it seems the more I sanded the more I then started to see the seam again!  It's finding that happy medium where you are OK with the contour of the paste vs wanting to get it sanded back completely down.  

 

Added the rivets- no gap!!!  

 

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I will be making some shins in the coming months for a friends suit I'm helping him with, I will try to work to your level of accuracy and attetnion to detail!

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Thanks a lot guys!  The little secret I must share which will save you a lot of mental anguish, is to dust the seam with some spray paint lightly.  I probably could have done this after the first round and gotten close to the same result, but it does make the difference if your seam is smooth after the ab paste sanding and not still a physical gap for the paint dusting to help hide it if still showing in spots.  

 

It took trying out the third can on some scrap of different brands of white gloss before I found a match, but it sure helped finish it off.  Just do not get in a hurry, lots of coats, a couple of dustings at a time, a couple of times of day, and the seam got lighter and lighter.  You can then polish around the outside edges of the areas where the paint and natural plastic meet to blend it in, but it matches so well you hardly have to do this at all.  Good luck everyone!  

 

This is the brand that matches AP-

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I was noticing on my photos the sides of the newly added kidney shims were 'flaring' out too much, as the bend matched the inner contour of the kidney plate, but did I did not shape it correctly for the bend to match to the abdomen.  You can see on these pics how it is bending out away from body rather than matching the abdomen.  

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So after consulting with FISD search forums, decided to give the boiling water trick a try rather than the dreaded heat gun.  The water seemed more forgiving in case I screw up.  

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I dipped it in the pan while boiling (just the end part of the shim that I wanted bent, not to the part of the actual weld) for about 20 seconds.  It took a couple of dips after the initial one to get it to start to move, but then I slowly was able to bend the sides in a bit.  You have to be careful not to press too hard near the area of the weld, or this would pry apart!  

 

Pretty happy with the results!  I need to tighten my strapping a few mm still, but the bend is much better now between the kidney and abdomen!  Sorry about the sorry pics, used the phone and not the good camera.

 

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Edited by Tusken RTT
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Excellent job. Im definitely bookmarking this thread for when I start mine.

 

1 possible suggestion is, where I'm a mechanic and have exposure to different kinds of products. You may want to consider using a wet paper the next time. They use it on painted surfaces and provides a very smooth surface with less effort. I will definitely do a test on some scraps from mine. I believe it will turn out great.

 

Awesome job on yours. It's making me anxious to get started on mine but I have to save the money for the kit. :(

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Appreciate it!  Good tip on the wet paper, the sanding sucked!   Save more than what you think you will need, there are so many extra $$ here and there I have lost count.  

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