Rai-Ro adhesive wax is very hard, and it sticks to soft plastic very well. The adhesive wax is ideal for temporary bonds, it is the medium of choice for anyone interested in experimenting with figure poses before they are set with superglue or additional adhesive wax. There is no glue on the market today which actually fuzes two parts of a soft plastic figure together. As a result, any bond using superglue, adhesive wax or whatever else may be used to glue soft plastic parts, will be mechanically unsafe. If too much pressure is put on the joint, the attached part just snaps off. Expert modellers pin replacement parts into place with 0.6 mm pianowire, and secure the joint with superglue. Rai-Ro adhesive wax is a suitable alternative, it secures the joint, it hardens more quickly, and fills small cracks at the same time. The adhesive wax does not leak out and spoil adjacent areas, like superglue often does.
Tools & Accessories
- Rai-Ro ZEP-70 Wachsspachtelgerät
- Rai-Ro Adhesive Wax (brown)
- 0.6 mm Pianowire
- Hylin Engraving Tool
- Soft Toothbrush
- Silicone Remover
The easiest and most useful conversion procedure is the swapping of heads, converting one troop type to another, which differed only in the headdress. Swapped heads need to be pinned to prevent them from snapping off later. Pianowire makes excellent pins, because it does not bend easily as it is pushed into the torso of the figure. Another method is to actually drill the holes for the pin, and use short pieces of brass wire. Brass wire is soft, and it allows the head to be turned or bent slightly even after the superglue has dried. It is generally a good idea to superglue the brass wire, but only very little superglue should be used. Once the superglue has dried, the gap between the head and the torso is filled with adhesive wax. The wax may be sculpted with the heated spatula, and any excess may be scraped off with the modelling tool.
Arms and Legs
Arms should be pinned through the shoulder, using brass or pianowire pins. It is best to drill the arm and the shoulder before inserting the pin. Superglue the pin into the body first, then superglue the arm on, and hold it in the proper position until the glue has dried. The gap between the arm and the body should be filled with adhesive wax, which may be sculpted to hide the joint. Prone figures may be put together using adhesive wax only, particularly if the miniatures are based later, protecting them from damage. The adhesive wax is great for tacking limbs into place temporarily, reheating the joint to adjust the limb, and finally sealing the joint with more wax. The adhesive wax stays tacky for a few seconds, and it is possible to snap off and adjust a limb during that time. The resulting joint will be very fragile, but it can be secured by applying more adhesive wax.
Small parts may be attached to a figure by tacking them into place with adhesive wax. Backpacks and large pouches may be pinned as well, but this is not strictly necessary. Adhesive wax holds these parts in place, and green wax fills any remaining gaps. Sometimes it will be necessary to reheat a joint and allow capillary action to pull the adhesive wax into the seam. Adhesive wax flows differently and it is harder than the grey modelling wax, it may even be sculpted carefully with the heated spatula. Sometimes, this is the faster way to rebuild a shoulder or neck, rather than reconstruct the area with modelling wax and an engraving tool.
Another useful feature of adhesive wax is that it can be used to hold metal parts together while the superglue is drying. We tested this application on RalPartha Mech Warrior models with great success. The arm and leg joints of the Mechs were covered with superglue, held into position, and secured with a drop of adhesive wax. After the superglue had set, the adhesive wax was reheated, and drawn into any remaining gaps between the limb and the body of the figure. Pewter models can be very heavy, and they have a tendency to fall apart before the superglue has set fully. Adhesive wax is probably the safest and most convenient solution for this frustrating problem.
Rai-Ro brown wax is the adhesive of choice when metal parts need to be attached to plastic or resin surfaces. When superglue is too difficult to control, and whenever delicate surface detail must be protected, adhesive wax is the right choice. Adhesive wax saves a lot of time in figure conversion projects, because it sticks to any surface. Unlike superglue, adhesive wax does not require a smooth surface area to bond two parts, it simply fills the entire gap between the parts, and it stays there.
Plastic figure conversion is a fiddly business, particularly at the smaller scales. The ideal adhesive for this kind of work provides the modeller with as much flexibility in drying time as possible. Superglue is inflexible: Sometimes is dries too slowly, another time it immediately bonds when it should not. Adhesive wax, used on its own or in conjunction with superglue, solves this problem wonderfully, it holds parts together instantly, and bonds them when they are exactly in the right position. That’s freedom of choice for the modeller.