Sunday, December 11, 2011

Fixing up my Predator

So a bit more than a year ago, I bought a NECA Classic Predator. Right out of the package, it was missing a knee pad. I emailed NECA after to see if I can get a replacement piece, but have never gotten back a response.

I've been meaning to attempt to sculpt a knee pad myself to fix this, but always end up forgetting. But recently I've been looking at the series 4 of the Predator series because of the improved articulation and apparently improved QC on these figures, which reminded me of my bare knee Predator. I end up picking up a pack of SculpeyIII from Michaels and today I decided to take a stab at fixing this.

Here's how it is out of the package, really sucks that they miss this piece right out of the package. After all the QC problems I've had with NECA, it really makes me do a doubletake every time I was about to buy one of their figures. Their Predator line is getting really nice, I skipped out of many of them already, but with the new improved ball hip joints and double jointed knees, I think I am going to pick them up in the end.

Here's what I made from the Sculpey clay, the clay is more sticky than I expected. It left a lot of residue on the figure. I only used the end of a paint brush to smooth the surface and an exacto knife for details. This is the first time I played with sculpting so I think it looks alright. Although it is a bit thicker than I would have liked, but the thickness was needed for it to stand up properly.

Since this Sculpey clay is bake dry, I had to somehow remove this piece from the figure and bake it. That failed as the clay was way too soft and I end up turning the clay back into a small blob. After that I searched the net to see if I could somehow cure the clay while it is on the figure. I found out a common method is to boil a pot of water and dip the figure in it for 30 second intervals. I was scared to deform the crappy plastic on the NECA figure so I only dipped it in for 10 seconds at a time and about 20 times. After using the boiling water method, the clay has harden quite a bit, but not rock solid. I figure since this is my first try I will just work with it like this for now and see how things go.

This is after a couple of washes and dry brushing, I couldn't get it to match the color of the other pad so I just did it my way. The paint is still drying as I type this. I will glue it in place tomorrow and see how it holds up.

I think it looks alright, what do you guys think? It sure as hell look a lot better than having the knee joint exposed!

This first sculpting experience was very fun. I am now thinking of future sculpting projects I can attempt haha!


  1. Thats a great job you have done! I think NECA quality suck is one thing, failed to answer for such QA issue sucks more. Good that you blog about it.

  2. @LEon: Ya NECA QC and customer support sucks, but their Predator figures are too nice, I think I am going to grab one of the newer ones soon. Hope I don't get a broken one LOL!

    @jboypacman: Thanks! I think I did a pretty good job too haha!