FIMO Questions thread [Archive] - OSW: One Sixth Warrior Forum

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11-21-2006, 11:35
Hello, I have recently started using FIMO in some of my products, and I have a number of questions that I have not been able to find answers to. I hope that some of you more experienced chaps could find it in your hearts to guide a neophyte like me.

Question 1: What can I use to soften Fimo once it air dries and gets crumbly? I made a few things with some Fimo soft, and then wrapped the extra in plastic wrap. I guess that wasn't good enough, though, because when I tried to use some of it, it was very crumbly and difficult to work with. I kneaded it for about seven minutes, and it still seemed very stiff and unyielding. Perhaps I did not knead it enough, but seven minutes is a LONG time to work a little egg-sized lump of clay, if you ask me. I understand that mineral (white) spirits can be used to smooth it out; can it be used to soften it, too?

Question 2: What exactly is the recommended time for firing? The package says 30 min, but I've seen no more than 15 minutes on the fimo usa page and 10-20 by members of the board. Also, is it possible to make fimo mods directly to a body, or will the body melt?

Thanks, guys. Let me say that looking at the work I've seen and the openess exchange of ideas on this board have really challenged me to move outside of my comfort zone.

Tony Barton
12-07-2006, 15:17
Hello Johnny : I've not had much problem with re-kneading Fimo after I've left it for a week or two : you could try the kneading additive they sell ( just a soft form of Fimo ).
I keep mine in plastic bags too . You can add white spirit , but although it eventually works you get in a hell of a mess whilst trying to knead it in : I prefer the Sculpey Diluent , which is odourless .
I wonder if your crumbly Fimo has got rather Hot in storage ? If it was stored in a hot place it could go cheesy on you .

Firing time depends a little on the size of the object : if the oven is already hot , 15 mins. should be fine for a head : you do need to experiment a little , because it all depends on how hot your oven is at the centre rack where you fire it : If it comes out cheesy , with a tendency to crumble , it's underdone . If it starts browning and smelling , it's overcooking .

Don't try Fimo mods on a plastic body : it WILL melt , believe me , I've tried it !

When I add things like arms , I saw off the original from the plastic body, and clean up the socket , make the arm separately , then push fit a plug to the socket , gently pull it out and fire it on its own ; A little cleaning up , then you can secure the arm in place with a fired plug that fits the socket in the arm .
Same drill for knees/legs .
You are right to " move out of the comfort Zone " : for 1/6th , Fimo is in some ways superior to Sculpey : it has a better flesh-like consistency for body mods ; Sculpey , unless you make your own mix , is too translucent for unpainted heads , though it's much easier to polish after carving .
If you want to reshape the anatomy of the torso , better to use an epoxy putty .

Keep experimenting : a little experience helps .

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12-07-2006, 18:29
Thanks, Tony. I've made my first head, using your techniques and suggestions. It will be a part of my Santa contest entry (if I get it done in time - I took last week off to go to Disney World.) I'll post pictures of the various stages once it's finished. This is a great forum, and all the warriors here have moved me from mere parts bashing to the preliminary stages of real custom work. Thanks, fellas.

12-07-2006, 18:31
I do have another question: DO you have recommened dimensions for hands/fingers? All of mine have turned out large and cartoony.

Tony Barton
12-07-2006, 19:21
That's one of the weird things about hands : I've been making a lot of hands recently , and I've also discovered that if I make them to exact scale , they look far too big . The Manufacturers have discovered this too , and all the ones I've seen are underscale .
I can only suggest you measure some convenient dimension of your own hand in the position that you are modelling , divide it by six , and then make it a tad smaller !

12-07-2006, 21:51
Can I use Fimo to add hair to a bald DML sculpt, if so, anad I bake it, will it still adhere to the sculpt?

Thanks for the tutorials that you've done for all of us.


Tony Barton
12-08-2006, 03:18
Hello CC : yes , so long as you are very careful not to overheat . Before I tried this I thought that the vinyl head would melt , but it doesn't at 125 C which is fine to fuse the Fimo : I did two heads with moustaches as a trial , and they are fine : though of course they need to be separate from the bodies : they WILL melt !

11-06-2007, 20:14
I have a question: when using Fimo to create a new hairstyle for a headsculpt, is it necessary to strip the head of paint first? I mean, will the paint on the average BBI or DML headsculpt be able to withstand the heat necessary to fuse the Fimo?

Tony Barton
11-07-2007, 05:45
No , The paint seems to survive the experience . You might be wise to roughen the areas where you are going to apply the Fimo , to get a better key into the surface , but you don't have to strip the paint .

11-07-2007, 09:39