As in removing paint, not the sexy dancing!
I've decided to make my little experiment into something of a tutorial/published learning curve here on the blog for you to all to take pleasure in my potential success or failure!
I went back to my parents house recently and dug out a whole bunch of old bits and pieces. A few of my first few models painted - old metal Cadians, Valhallan Ice Warriors, old Eldar and a few scattered Space Marines. They're all various different colours and fit in with very little I currently have or use so I decided to try to strip the paint from them to make them future projects.
Where to start? I've read a lot on various blogs and forums about Simple Green:
This stuff is apparently the bees knees and all the Americans rant and rave about its all-round greatness. Problem is you can't seem to buy it over here in the U.K unless you go via the manufacturer's website or various other web stores (google it). I wanted to have a go at this today, and only on a few mini's - I didn't want to wait for delivery - so I got searching for other options.
The most useful article I found was here at Bolter and Chainsword. It's specifically related to U.K products which was handy and there's a few different recommendations, all readily available. After reading that article I went to the local Sainsburys and bought two options to try out: Mr Muscle Mullti-Task Kitchen, and Fairy Power Spray. Both about £2-£3 but you get twice as much Mr Muscle as Fairy.
I got back last night and dropped a few old metal models and one plastic Space Marine (more cautious with plastic in case it melted them!) into Mr Muscle and left them for a few hours. As soon as they were in the clear Mr Muscle there were wisps of colour coming off the models and after four hours it looked like this:
After about four hours I pulled a couple of the models out and gave them a scrub with a medium firm toothbrush.
Depending on how you look at it there is one advantage/disadvantage with the plastic soak though - the glued joints all gave way very easily while scrubbing and the poor guy is almost back to his original parts!
I'm quite pleased with this as it'll allow me to re-model my marines for the re-birth of my Blood Angels/Angels Sanguine by adding in pieces from the new Blood Angel boxed sets and giving evey Marine something BA related.
A few things worth pointing out at this stage - DON'T do this in a small room - the fumes will make your eyes water and I'm sure fumes generally aren't good for you. DON'T use your actual toothbrush, obviously. DO use a rubber glove to avoid soaking your hand in detergent and DO use an old towel or similar on your lap to avoid bits of paint and soap all over you clothes. Lastly DON'T do this in your normal workspace without clearing away your models first or you'll spray them with paint stripping detergent! With that out of the way, back to the action;
Here's three of the metal mini's soaked in Mr Muscle. They've come out fine all round, apart from the odd nook and cranny on the Warlock as you can see. All of these lines will be removed by carefully scraping with a pin/exacto tip. Be careful not to scratch any details etc. if you do this though.
Will follow up in the next day or two with the Fairy results as that went in to soak a good bit later than these did. In the mean time, anyone else got any good tips for refreshing those cool old models?