One of the most tedious parts of getting a model into production is the unglamourous but very necessary job of cleaning up master castings (known as ‘tins’) ready for the production moulds. I find this part of the process extremely dull (I may have mentioned this before …) but it has to be done. These castings have to have any small vent sprues, flash or mould lines cleaned away and filed smooth – otherwise we’ll just reproduce these imperfections when we make the production mould. We always cast more items then we need for the production mould, because castings that might seem OK in the workshop on a cold evening may not always pass closer inspection when cleaning up. Any pitting or less than perfect detail will see the casting rejected.
I spent my evening yesterday with some of the tins for the Bizon production moulds. The Bizon in particular has a lot of pieces and will need a lot of moulds – some of these will be shared with other models (such as the track units, side-skirts and gatling turrets) whereas others are unique to this model (track-guards and turrets).
In this photo you can see a selection of bits – side-skirts and external stowage (bottom left) which are cleaned up and ready for the production mould, some turrets (top left), one with gun which is cleaned and ready and a batch of others waiting for a visit from clippers and file, and some raw track-guards (bottom right) which I’ve yet to tackle.
In other news … the prints for the three PacFed tanks have turned up, and they look superb. Unfortunately I’ve already dunked them in jar of cleaning fluid and forgot to take photos of the assembled pieces first (doh !) so you’ll have to make do with a photo of some undefinable pieces floating in some murky-looking gunk …
Proper photos later in the weekend, I promise !