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Warcry
2013-02-23, 07:36 PM
Whirl's something I wanted to work on for a while, but I held off because the idea seemed so obvious that I figured Hasbro had to do it themselves eventually. The DOTM Whirl mold was so clearly designed with the G1 character in mind that it was a bit surprising that he wasn't released in G1 colours to start with, and the toy's never been redecoed. Eventually, I just gave up on it and decided to do it myself.

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I think it turned out pretty well. The toy has the same awkward arrangement as the original Whirl, including his trademarked ski-feet and hips that look like they're bolted onto the outside of his torso. He's also got a lot of 3mm clip points, allowing you to arm him up with even more weapons than the original toy came with.

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The head isn't a perfect match, unfortunately. Without a Shockwave-esque head (and with no Generations Shockwave toys available at retail for me to chop the head off of) I painted the visor and face on the existing head in one colour. The end result is closer to a Cyberjet face than the traditional box with a single optic in it, but I think it's alien enough to work.

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The alt-mode is weak, but that's just a fact of life when you're using a Human Alliance Basic toy. I think I like the helicopter better in baby blue than I do in the original brown, because the alt-mode looks more like one of those toy remote-controlled helicopter than anything else and the more "kiddy" colours work nicely. That's just about the only good thing I have to say about the thing though, and I seriously doubt I'm ever going to transform him to helicopter mode again now that I've taken the pictures...I certainly don't recall having the thing in alt-mode very often before I repainted it.

Warcry
2013-02-23, 07:42 PM
(continued, since I can't attach more than five pics per post)

Aside from the weak alt-mode, the other weakness in the mold is it's size. As you can see here, Whirl's pretty tiny.

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Scale-wise, he probably works better as a Cyberverse Whirl than as Generations Whirl. But in spite of Hasbro's best efforts to cheapen the character by attaching his name to random blue redecoes of every second helicopter toy Hasbro makes, the DOTM mold is the only one to even come close to replicating Whirl's distinct look. Now that it's got proper colours, I'm quite happy with the thing.

What I'm not all that happy with are the pictures. If I'm going to keep doing stuff like this, I really need to build a lightbox and find a better camera, as I've been noticing that any picture I've taken in the last few months has needed to be brightened after the fact no matter what the lighting conditions are like when I take the shot. :(

Clay
2013-02-24, 03:23 AM
There's a conversion kit for the Tomahawk mold. Has a new head, ski feet, etc.

I've rummaged around in the bins, and I can't find any Whirl-y scout-sized heads :(

Warcry
2013-02-24, 05:51 AM
I was already picking out paint colours for Tomahawk when I saw pics of this little guy and shelved that idea. But I don't think Tomahawk's proportions work as well for Whirl as the HA Basic's do. I've seen the conversion kit, and seen what people have done with it, but if I'm going to repaint a Tomahawk into any of the Wreckers it'd definitely be Rotorstorm.

Generations Shockwave's quite a pinhead, actually, so his head would have worked great if I'd been able to find one (and I decided not to pay full price plus shipping when I don't think I'd use the body for anything). Of course, neither Whirl nor Shockwave are actually designed with easily-removable heads so that would have been an adventure in and of itself, but with the big ears trimmed down it would have looked just about right. I think it might have even fit into the transformation without requiring any additional mods, too.

But I'm reasonably happy with the way he turned out, regardless. :)

Rack 'n Ruin
2013-02-24, 10:03 AM
Gen Shockwave doesn't have a normal ball jointed head, instead having neck rotation only with no up or down movement. I'm not sure how easy it would be fit the head to anything else without major surgery (maybe removing both necks, for example).

Let me know if you do try it though. A while back I was hoping to do a Gen Air Raid/Fireflight to GDO Wheelie head swap. I abandoned my plans based on the weird neck joint of Shockwave/Air Raid/Fireflight. If it can be done my Chromedome plans would be back on. Mwah hah hah hah!

Clay
2013-02-24, 07:59 PM
To get Shockwave's head off, first you need to remove this pin from the torso:

http://i50.photobucket.com/albums/f303/claywyatt1982/superion102.jpg

Then you need to heat the pin under the head with a solder iron to remove it:

http://i50.photobucket.com/albums/f303/claywyatt1982/superion103.jpg

If you want, I can make a mold of the head and make some resin copies for you to try your luck with. It's not difficult... just messy. :o

Warcry
2013-02-24, 11:05 PM
If you want, I can make a mold of the head and make some resin copies for you to try your luck with. It's not difficult... just messy. :o
When I work on something like this I enjoy dismantling toys and seeing how they're assembled almost as much as I enjoy the finished, painted-up project. In my books, the mess is half the fun! :)

(My wife does not agree. Probably because even a small project means that our tiny dining room gets taken over by paint bottles, robot parts and paint bottles. I definitely need to make sure we've either got a decent garage or space for a workroom when we move into a house later this year.)

At any rate, Shockwave's supposed to ship again in a couple later waves, so I'll probably be able to find him later on. The first wave of Generations had terrible timing here, since it showed up during the Christmas shopping rush (and was just about the only new stock to do so) and disappeared very quickly.

Let me know if you do try it though. A while back I was hoping to do a Gen Air Raid/Fireflight to GDO Wheelie head swap. I abandoned my plans based on the weird neck joint of Shockwave/Air Raid/Fireflight. If it can be done my Chromedome plans would be back on. Mwah hah hah hah!
After looking at Clay's pic, it actually seems doable. Once you've got Fireflight's head off, with a little bit of ingenuity it should be possible to either carve a ball socket in the head (if it's solid enough) or mount the pin to Jazz's collar. I'm not 100% sure how I'd engineer that in practice, but in principle it seems possible. My main worry is that the head might interfere with his transformation...Shockwave's head is about half a millimetre too wide to fit through the slot in Jazz's hood.

I was considering doing something similar but using Generations Sideswipe as the body, so if I go ahead with that I'll let you know how it works out. It likely won't happen for a while yet, though. My next project is likely to be something that I started a couple years ago but didn't have the confidence to go through with at the time: turning a spare Skullgrin into Killbison. There are a few engineering questions left with that one though, including whether I can figure out a way to mount his Minicon buddy as a chestplate without it looking absolutely ridiculous.

Paul053
2013-02-25, 04:29 AM
First, nice work on the Whirl.

Besides the conversion kit on the Tomahawk mold, I also saw people using DOTM voyager Skyhammer with a body part from Drift as the new head. That one worked pretty well as Whirl but have to sacrifice a Drift or Blurr.

I now have Air Raid's head available since I used his body to be Space Case. But I haven't found a suitable body for him yet to start my next project. RTS Jazz/GDO Wheelie's body is slightly too big for Air Raid. FOC Sideswipe could be a good choice but I'm still not yet convinced to like that mold.

Clay
2013-02-25, 07:56 PM
Have poured the mold for a Shockwave head. Will let you know in about three days if it's usable: the gel takes about 72 hours to cure. In contrast, the resin used for the copies sets in about ten minutes.

Clay
2013-02-27, 06:04 PM
http://i50.photobucket.com/albums/f303/claywyatt1982/whirl1.jpg
http://i50.photobucket.com/albums/f303/claywyatt1982/whirl2.jpg
http://i50.photobucket.com/albums/f303/claywyatt1982/whirl3.jpg

The mold worked! Just need to try casting it a few times to get one without bubbles.

Warcry
2013-02-27, 07:31 PM
How do you do that? It looks great. :up:

Any chance you could take a pic of what the underside of the head looks like, when you've got a second? I'm pondering a few potential ways to attach the head, but it'd help to know what I've got to work with.

Oh, and what would I owe you for this lovely piece of work?

Clay
2013-02-27, 10:10 PM
How do you do that? It looks great. :up:

I'm a wizard! :D

Any chance you could take a pic of what the underside of the head looks like, when you've got a second? I'm pondering a few potential ways to attach the head, but it'd help to know what I've got to work with.

Oh, and what would I owe you for this lovely piece of work?

Underside is just resin overflow:

http://i50.photobucket.com/albums/f303/claywyatt1982/whirl4.jpg

It needs to be shaved off and bored out to fit on a ball joint. And in reality it looks better/sharper than what the camera's picking up. As for cost, we'll go with less than $5, shipping included. Mostly I just need to get an Altoid tin or something to put them in to protect them.

Clay
2013-02-28, 02:45 AM
I'm a wizard! :D

Ah, not really. Found the box the stuff came in, which has the website address: http://www.alumilite.com/

Have fun!

Warcry
2013-03-01, 05:06 AM
That's brilliant! Seems fairly easy to use, and it's pretty cheap all things considered. I'll have to look into it one day, when I've got the space and the time. And while stark white plastic never really photographs well, I can still see clear as day that the molded details are just as sharp on your copy as they are on the original. I could think of a lot of nefarious uses for tech like that if I ever decide to get more adventurous with my kitbashing efforts.

The underside of the head looks fine, and having a bit of mold flash there isn't a problem. Whirl's designed with the reverse of the normal ball joint neck, so the ball's on his head and the socket's in his torso. I'm planning to drill out a hole and superglue in a pin/shaft with an appropriately-sized ball into the hole, but the head is so flat I was worried that I wouldn't be able drill a hole deep enough to get it to stick well. Leaving a millimetre or two of the overflow in the right spot would make that significantly easier though, I'll bet.

Once you've got everything sorted out on your end, just drop me a PM and let me know where to PayPal the money to.

Oh, and in case I didn't say so before -- thanks! You've saved me a lot of hunting. :)

Clay
2013-03-12, 09:42 PM
Ta da!

http://i50.photobucket.com/albums/f303/claywyatt1982/superion107.jpg

The first cast (on the far right) didn't fill in completely under the eye, so I'm going to try and install a paperclip antenna as a test before I mail them off.

Clay
2013-03-13, 06:28 PM
Thoughts? Will mail tomorrow.

http://i50.photobucket.com/albums/f303/claywyatt1982/superion108.jpg

Skyquake87
2013-03-13, 09:59 PM
This thread is great. I like seeing how these kit bashy things work and seeing these photos and whatnot is really great. What sort of tools do you use to get the pins and stuff out with?

Warcry
2013-03-14, 01:09 AM
Thoughts? Will mail tomorrow.
Can't really see that clearly, but it looks like a decent fit from what I can tell.

Thanks again for all the work you've put into these. :)

What sort of tools do you use to get the pins and stuff out with?
They make purpose-built pin-punches to do the job, though you can get by using a tiny screwdriver or a nail that's the right size in a pinch. Basically you just take something long, narrow and metal and bang on it with a hammer until you've knocked the pin out.

Pins where you can only access one end are a bit more difficult, and I generally try not to touch those. There are techniques to do it, but I'm not entirely sure I trust myself not to ruin things by doing them.

Kungfu Dinobot
2013-03-14, 05:45 AM
Have you thought of using TF:P Voyager Shockwave's head? I think it is a better fit (aesthetically, anyways, dunno about physically)

Warcry
2013-03-26, 01:17 AM
That would be hilarious, since Whirl here is basically a Scout. The head would be the size of his torso. I did consider the Cyberverse Commander version of the design, but I decided that head was a bit too heavy on the moviespikes for my liking.

Blackjack
2013-03-26, 03:52 PM
Couldn't you file or shave away the moviespikes off the Commander toy? After all, Whirl's head is a rectangle and with some precise cuts and molding you can chop off the sides of Shockwave's hexagonal head.

Not something I recommend myself, since cutting plastic is a horribly difficult affair, I'd imagine. Just throwing ideas out.

Warcry
2013-03-30, 10:05 PM
Cutting plastic isn't all that hard with the right tools. Cutting plastic accurately and in a way that doesn't look like shit...well, that's still a work in progress for me. :)

The head is mostly moviespikes, though. I think the details just stand out that much more at the smaller scale.

This, on the other hand, fits pretty well. Just need to figure out what to do about ball-jointing it, then decide whether/how I'm going to mod the head before I attach it (luckily I've got four to play with, so I'll be able to experiment).

Clay
2013-03-31, 05:58 AM
This, on the other hand, fits pretty well. Just need to figure out what to do about ball-jointing it, then decide whether/how I'm going to mod the head before I attach it (luckily I've got four to play with, so I'll be able to experiment).

What you need to do is find a ball joint that fits and then drill a hole up through it to fit a pin through. Then chop it off whatever it's on and mount it on the Shockwave with glue and then set the pin on through to reinforce it. Like rebar in concrete, basically.

I never picked up the Whirl figure to test on; otherwise I'd have had that sorted for you beforehand. :o

Warcry
2013-03-31, 02:11 PM
I've got that part all figured out -- my old man fixed a lot of toys for me that way when I was little. But Whirl uses one of the tiniest ball joints I've ever seen. Finding ones that are the right size in my junk box is proving difficult, and I want to track down several because destroying its thin neck in the conversion process is a very real possibility.

If that fails, plan B is to go to a sewing store, find a box of pins with heads the right size and mount one to the Shockwave head's neck by drilling a hole into it. I'd rather avoid that though, since that sounds like it'd be way more fragile than the traditional option.

Clay
2013-04-01, 04:59 AM
Hmm. Can you take a picture of the socket part in Whirl's neck/chest? I think I know of a simpler alternate way to attach the Shockwave head but need to know what it looks like first.

Clay
2013-04-01, 05:57 PM
This is what I had in mind: drill a pin through the socket and then you can reverse-mount a ball joint, or any another. Then just bore out the bottom of the head and socket the joint normally, and the head can still move back and forth on the axis inside the chest as it needs.

Warcry
2013-04-11, 05:12 AM
The part didn't photograph well so I can't show you all that clearly, but I could probably accomplish the same effect with a lot less work than that. The socket itself is a separate piece, a square block not much bigger than the ball-joint that mounts to it. If I decide to go in the direction you're suggesting, I'd take out the ball joint socket entirely and mount the new ball joint in it's place (I'll probably use the neck section from the Energon Rodimus who's sitting in my junk box, since it's already pretty close to the right size and shape). It wouldn't be much trouble, I'd just need to knock a couple pins out and possibly drill a hole in the replacement part.

The real problem would be boring a socket into the Shockwave head, because I don't know what the best tool would be for creating a rounded hole like that.

Clay
2013-04-11, 06:16 AM
Dremel 192 works well for that, and should come with any dremel tool. You just need to bore out a space inside Shockwave's head, and then cut down the Rodimus head to just the socket that fits over the ball (assume it's not in two pieces). Then just glue that inside the Shockwave head.

Warcry
2014-02-23, 12:31 AM
So I finally did this...

Because Hasbro announced their deliciously G1-accurate Whirl, I decided to go in a different direction with mine. I picked a head-cast that had a couple of imperfections along the eye-ridge, and when I removed the right ear I made sure to leave the stump of it behind to look like it had been blasted off. Then I painted over the wounds in black, with the idea that Whirl is deliberately calling attention to his wounds rather than fixing them, as if to say "they couldn't get me, what makes you think you can?" It also gives him a bit of a "warpaint" vibe, I think.

It took forever to finish, what with moving house in between and not having a good work area in the new place until recently, but I'm quite happy with how he turned out. He's going to hang out proudly with Big Brother when he arrives in the next month or so.

Blackjack
2014-02-23, 04:06 AM
Awesomeness! I like how a malformed cast of the Shockwave head suddenly gives even more character to Whirl's crazy personality.

Warcry
2014-02-23, 04:35 AM
The irony is that Clay sent me several perfectly good heads in the same package, and then I went ahead and used the shitty deformed one that he sent along for practice.

Clay
2014-02-23, 06:43 AM
It took forever to finish, what with moving house in between and not having a good work area in the new place until recently, but I'm quite happy with how he turned out. He's going to hang out proudly with Big Brother when he arrives in the next month or so.

Pffffff, you finished within a year of starting it. You have much to learn!

The irony is that Clay sent me several perfectly good heads in the same package, and then I went ahead and used the shitty deformed one that he sent along for practice.

Well, it works, so go with it. It turned out great, I think. Hard to believe it's been a year since I made those casts, though...

inflatable dalek
2014-02-23, 06:11 PM
That is bloody awesome, nice to see you didn't just give up on it when everyone's Whirl wet dream got announced, it's a really funky alternate take (and as you say way back in the first post, it's mildly surprising Hasbro haven't done it themselves).

Having two G1 Whirl's on the shelf will probably result in one killing the other though.

Blackjack
2014-02-23, 06:51 PM
Having two G1 Whirl's on the shelf will probably result in one killing the other though.

Nah, I reckon the conversation will go more like this.

Whirl 1: "Holy hell, another me?"

Whirl 2: "Holy hell, another me?"

Whirl 1: "..."

Whirl 2: "..."

Whirl 1: "Holy shit, this is awesome!"

Whirl 2: "Hey, shorter-yet-equally-handsome version of me, wanna go hunt down Cyclonus and tear off that bunny-eared head of his?"

Whirl 1: "Cool! After that maybe we can play skis on Warcry's refrigerator!"

Whirl 2: "THEN WE KILL WARCRY!"

Whirl 1: "HELL YES!"

Warcry
2014-02-23, 07:04 PM
No way! If they want to go skiing, there's plenty of real snow outside.

...

Wait, that's not the part I was supposed to object to, was it?

Blackjack
2014-02-23, 07:40 PM
Nah, pretty sure there isn't a single objectionable part in that conversation. Maybe, maaaybe the tearing-off-Cyclonus'-head bit.

Warcry
2014-02-24, 05:20 AM
Actually, the objectionable part is that I haven't had a chance to take a picture of Whirl skiing yet...

Also, somehow forgot to reply to you guys.

Pffffff, you finished within a year of starting it. You have much to learn!
On the other hand, Killbison has been in progress for nearly four years and hasn't even seen a drop of paint yet. So there's that.

Well, it works, so go with it. It turned out great, I think. Hard to believe it's been a year since I made those casts, though...
Yeah, doesn't seem like that long ago, does it? And you did a great job with them, too!

Now, to figure out what to do with several pristine Shockwave heads...

That is bloody awesome, nice to see you didn't just give up on it when everyone's Whirl wet dream got announced, it's a really funky alternate take (and as you say way back in the first post, it's mildly surprising Hasbro haven't done it themselves).
It was a bit demotivating, I have to say. But eventually I just figured, hell, I came this far, might as well finish it off. Especially since Clay went to all the trouble to casting the head for me.

But yeah, seriously, who designs a toy that looks this much like G1 Whirl and then makes it brown? Silly Hasbro, that's like making a silver and white Powerglide.

...

Oh. Right.