View Full Version : Astro droid customs?

05-14-2007, 08:28 PM
So has anyone done any astro droid customising. specifically swapping an R4 head onto a decent astro body like the R4-G9 or R5-D4? and similarly shoving R3 heads on better bodies?

it's something i'd like to try but just wondered about as i don't want to screw up decent figures.

See, I had a mad crazy dea that I'd like to have every astro droid seen in the movies. which by my count is 54. there may be a few more that take it to 60 but clearly visible to me so far in my exploration there are 54 unique astro droids.

if you include R1 droids then you can add a further 4. Or 3 if you count the one from the droid sale as the same one rolling around near the cantina. it certainly looks identical.

I discount anything EU like Mace windu's droid or Anakin's sith droid. or any cheese slab jedi starfighter droid.

so if anyone has done the custom thing and swapped heads let me know how you did it and any problems you encountered please. also if you have any decent pics of droids pass em on. I have a fairly good library of reference pics but not all of it is truly usable. hi rez pics would help me greatly.

you may have seen my mock up pics in the 30th anniversary section but those mockups will be what I do for real. plus correcting hasbro paint jobs.


figrin bran
05-15-2007, 01:18 AM
the only droid custom work i've done was painting the back panels on R5 D4 red.

05-15-2007, 12:13 PM
For the most part, I quit repainting droids when the EE 10-pack came out. (I repainted one more last year maroon and orange and named him R4-VT.)

I tried to take the dome off of an older R2 once to make an R3 (before they released the first one,) but just ended up destroying the whole figure.

05-15-2007, 07:01 PM
I've cracked R2 heads and glued on R5 heads which were casted.

I've done lots of repainting of R2s mostly to practice detailing.

05-15-2007, 07:26 PM
ok thanks guys. i have a spare R4 and R5. i'll have a go and see what i can manage. hope it works. and if it does I'll finish the paint job and post pics.

I reckon the R3 will toughest as it has all that gubbins inside. and they aren't all the same. But i don't need working heads I'll just be glueing them on in a front facing position. the most important part is having the right body sculpt with the heads. and the right colour schemes.

I'll tackle Tatooine droids first and if they work I'll do Imperial and rebel. I realise last night that 54 astro droids is a lot of droid. best to split it up and tackle one section at a time.

I'll be correcting the EE droids too. the paint job on R3-T2 is way off. R4-A22 is orange and should be red. tsk.

06-03-2007, 10:28 PM
just started working on some droids. couple of fix ups on R5-D4 and R2-T2. converting R2-M5 into R2-D2.

also turning R2-C4 into R2-A1 and R2-A6 into one of the astro droids outside the cantina.and repainting three spare R5 droids into other droids seen around the cantina and in Mos Eisley.

Oh and repainting R-3PO to become AOTC C-3PO because I like the sculpt on R-3PO and because I had him spare and thought why not? I'll try to remember to take pictures this time.

06-04-2007, 07:06 PM
did a bit of first coating and laying in what will basically be the colour scheme. swore a lot about the incosistency of pigment richness in paints these days. spilled a tin of black matt on my desk. and shortened the top photreceptor knub on the dome of R3-T2 to be more movie accurate. cursed the fact I'm going blind and need a magnifying lens to do this sort of thing but don't have a lens and hunch over trying to do it anyway.

here's a quick pic i took this afternoon. they look a little rough but I'd only started then.

06-05-2007, 08:20 AM
Very nice.

I really like the yellow R5 you've done.

I quit customizing astromechs about the time the EE 10 pack came out. I need to get back into it and paint some R5's before the baby gets here and I have no more free time.

06-05-2007, 02:44 PM
They look good so far. You may want to hit them up with a second or third coat. I can see the brush marks and some of the base underneath still.

As to the squinting, eye fatigue, nothing you can do. I did a whole bunch of minis last year. That drove me nuts. I did though have the added benefit of working with microscopes at school and work so it wasn't all wasted.

Are you planning on doing all 60 or so astromechs? That's insane. I tried doing one custom a day over the course of last year between gi joe and star wars. That about burned me out. IF not for painting a the same color on several figures simultaneously I don't think I could've done much.

The most annoying thing I find about astromechs is that you have to paint a "clean" version first, than weather since most droids tend to come slightly weathered.

06-06-2007, 01:31 PM
I'm doing them in small numbers and taking my time. today my eyes hurt quite a bit so i'm doing nothing but star at them.

the brush strokes will vanish. i use thin enamel paints and get on a few coats. I wish hasbro would give customisers a break and sell a blank white astro droid. or sell it to kids as a paint your own sort of set. include some little pots of paint and a brush. a printed sheet with pictures of various astro droids to copy.
it'd also be cool if someone brought out a book of all the astro droids in the saga. I've been checking again and discovered a couple more that I've never noticed before. I've also noticed that as R2-D2 rolls along on his way to docking bay 94 his body is not his own. it's a repainted one with grey panels on the front. in fact i hve a pic of this imposter R2. it's in the foreground and in the background you can see R2-D2 just going into the doorway of docking bay 94. I'll post it if i can find it.

06-06-2007, 01:41 PM
We've been asking the that question at FFURG for years of Hasbro about make your own figure. Even make it paint by numbers, doesn't matter to me.

Yes, some one else who believes that enamels are best for droids!!!

Well there's astromech.net for a website. The only definitive sources with pictures have been Cynabar's Fantastic Technology Droids from WEG and Arms and Equipment Guide from WotC, but they only show the models of every known droid in the movies and EU.

06-06-2007, 02:44 PM
I've had to use a white acrylic on R2-A2 the white paint I've got is more like cream for some reason.

I've been to astromech .net but their picture archive was disappointing. the side banner that randomly changes is far better with nice clear CG images of the droids. I couldn't se it on the site but do they have a gallery of those CG drawn droids?

I am hoping eventually to have done all the movie astro droids and some EU droids. even if it's just a tiny modification or colour correction. it would be cool to have a shelf full of astro droids.

enamel paint has a longer drying time than acrylics. and as long as you have your paint thin enough and fluid enough enamel is really easy to work with. though to really dry the gloss out you need to put the painted object somewhere cold. warmth just makes the gloss go sticky.

looks like my partner is going to buy me some sort of illuminated magnifying lens for doing this sort of work. but in case we can't find one we like I've designed a simple one made from wood. just a post with holes drilled in it and a magnifying sheet set in a lightweight frame with a post at one end to fit the holes. height adjustable and a small amount of tilt. I'd sooner have a bought one though.
and I'll be getting new glasses in august so that should help. at least then i'll be able to see the lines I'm trying to keep to.

06-21-2007, 07:12 PM
took a break from doing astrodroids. but had a few other figures on my desk. R-3PO and a power droid and the treadwell that came with Beru. plus both versions of the Otoga 222 pit droid.

First off i picked up 3po and ws going to turn him into AOTC 3po but then decided i don't actually want that 3po so i decided to make the first imperial 3po droid. painted him with a metal based enamel paint as a basecoat. thought if any patches went unpainted on the top coat it would look better with a metallic colour showing through rather than the horrible pinky red of the plastic. Painted a coat of gloss black enamel over the top of that. Last thing I have left to do is perfect his eyes. Not sure how to finish them with a silver look like a death star droid or with a yellow glow like C-3PO. maybe red?

anyway while waiting for paint to dry i gave the Gonk droid the same treatment.though i didn't try to get a smooth finish on him and went for the knocked about look. figuring he'd be thrown around all over the place on a busy flight deck.

the treadwell i decided to get slightly creative with. I cut off the box at the rear or front. there's a slight hollow because the bottom of the box is lowr than the body of the droid but it's ok as i'll just treat it like a hatch that the power socket is underneath. I've repainted the blue parts with a more accurate blue and also painted the gaps betwen the tread wheels blue and the sides of the wheels silver to match the faces. I'm leaving the treads as they were coz they have a sort of covered in sand colour like golden sand dust over a darker colour. Last thing i'll do is fabricate an antenna and glue that on behind the centre box and then spatter the droid with a bit of simulated dirt and add a little rust.

the Otoga 222 droids just looked awful and i always hated the paint and plastic hasbro used. so again i painted them with a metallic undercoat then applied a coat of very light grey over that. it's a sort of mushroom grey rather than a normal grey. but it works well. I have a second coat of it to apply just to strengthen the non opacity. then I'll use a very subtle dillute black enamel for oil runs and a sandy dirt colour to pick out where dirt would naturally gather. Be cool to have them both looking the same and joining the EP1 pit droids again.

pictures will follow just need some decent light to take em.