One Last Dip – Staining Tyranids Will Soon be a (fond?) Memory

The time has come (the walrus said) to dip my many things…

Wh39kDip2015 (2)After creating my setup, I was finally ready to get down to the actual motions of dipping my bugs.  You know, I really make a big deal out of it, but I’m not sure how much of a pain it really is.  I guess once you do the prep work, getting down to dipping really isn’t so bad.  I was able to do everything in about 2 hours (minus a little drop catching in the ensuing hours).

A couple of special problems that came up this time that I wasn’t exactly prepared for were:

  1. Wh39kDip2015 (4)Two of my carnies fell off their bases during the process.  The basic jidst of how you dip (or at least how I do it) is that you coat the model in entirely too much stain and then flick the excess off them.  Well, during that flicking motion, two of the beasties came clear off their bases.  That left me in a bit of a pickle as they’re not well balanced and I didn’t want to lean them against something.  I also was covered in stain (from kneeling in it and from the flicking process) so I couldn’t just go inside and get some superglue (nor do I know how well that would work, since the base had a coating of stain on it as well).  Wh39kDip2015 (6)In the end, I wound up leaning them both against a box in such a way that only the tips of their tongues touched.  That worked for the most part, except one of them fell forward and his head was wiped clear of stain.  Luckily, I caught that before everything dried and was able to rebath his head in the wash.  In total, it got a little too much on it, but I don’t think it stands out too bad–I’m guessing you wouldn’t really notice it on the table, unless I brought it up.
  2. Wh39kDip2015 (7)I ran out of nails.  My last post queried whether or not I’d have enough, and I clearly didn’t have anywhere near enough.  During the process, I had to put four and five arms on a single nail.  It was a bit of a chore to keep them separated enough so as not to touch or drip on each other.  Yeah, I should’ve gone back and done more nails, but the last past was purely hindsight, as I had written it after I finished the dipping process. >.<
  3. Wh39kDip2015 (1)I also had an issue with hanging visquene.  Ok, well, not so much this time.  In the past, I’ve always taped it around the garage door guides or to the walls/ceiling.  Back then I’ve had problems with parts of it falling down (likely because I use blue-tape–since I don’t want to leave any permanent marks).  Well, this time, I got smart.  I realized that my buildings are all stored at the top shelf of the garage, and I could just hook the visquene around the pointy bits at the top of the buildings, and that prevented me from using tape.

    Wh39kDip2015 (5)At this point, you’re probably thinking that my buildings came crashing down under the weight of the plastic, but that isn’t the case.  What really happened is that my buildings came crashing down (sort of), but not because of the weight.  My wife, who knew that I was dipping and had seen the setup, wound up heading out the next day, but forgot something.  Well, when she came back home, she mistakenly opened my garage door, which caused a bit of a ruckus.

    Wh39kDip2015 (11)The plastic wound up getting spooled around the garage door, so much so that I had to cut it off.  The dipped models were all unscathed (though parts of the cardboard collapsed in the driveway, but it had long since dried up).  The real issue was that my buildings were no match for the strength of a garage door opening, and they were taken along for a ride.  The wound up on top of the garage door and got a little beat up, but it wasn’t all that bad.

Wh39kDip2015 (9)Otherwise, they’re all dipped, and now I need to wait for them to properly dry (they’re still a little tacky), and then I can get their bases done and some good action shots.  For now though, I’ll leave you with various work in progress photos and a wise response from Brandon when I texted him a picture:

“You really know how to make a mess, eh?”



7 comments on “One Last Dip – Staining Tyranids Will Soon be a (fond?) Memory

  1. I do not envy you this process. I completely understand why you wait and get a big batch ready before doing it. The end result is great but damn that setup, process and dry time.

    • It’s gotten better. The worst part is the stickiness. It gets over everything. Getting it out of arm-hair is super painful. This time, I just let it sit there for a few weeks until it came off during normal washing. Scrubbing it raw got old, really fast.

      On Mon, Jul 20, 2015 at 6:58 AM, Warhammer 39,9999 wrote:


    • Don’t I know it. When I dip these, I really wonder why it is that I spend so much time painting my marines, when dipping accomplishes nearly the same effect and I get far more compliments on my bugs.

      On Tue, Jul 21, 2015 at 12:10 AM, Warhammer 39,9999 wrote:


  2. The early photos of the dipped models are absolutely stunning. Your wife was probably horrified when she realized what she had done.

    • Well, I made her take the photos because I was far too sticky to do so. She’s a pretty good sport–but I haven’t been able to con her into actually painting for me yet. One day…

      On Tue, Jul 21, 2015 at 9:09 AM, Warhammer 39,9999 wrote:


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