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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know there are replacement heads available for the Aurora Hunchback, which offer a better likeness of either Chaney, or even Quinn. But has anyone kept the original head and just re-sculpted the hair to give the Hunchback a more "appropriate" look rather than the Tony Curtis coif he has?

I came across a photo once where someone had redone the hair with, I think, cotton, and then painted it. It didn't look too bad, but it didn't look like it was "part of the model", if you know what I mean.

I know the Hunchback doesn't really look like anybody in particular, but I quite like the face as is. I just wish the hair had been more fitting.

So .. has anyone tried such a re-sculpt approach to the Hunchback's hair, and, if so, do you have a picture you could post?

thanks
 

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I know the Hunchback doesn't really look like anybody in particular...
I have to disagree with you there, Frankie; I think the Hunchback was intended to resemble Lon Chaney. If you compare it with photos from the 1923 film you'll see the resemblance not only in the facial features but the body hair and even the ridges in the shoulders where the latex "shirt" buckled over the contrivance that held the hump in place. But yes, the hair is wrong if you want your Quasimodo to look like Chaney.

Beck's approach, using Liquitex Acrylic Modeling Paste, has its uses but also its limitations. (By the way, they have textured products for different effects, with things like sand and fibers mixed into the gel; I've had good results using the latter for representing hair on Brother Rat Fink http://members.toast.net/blackswampmodelers/RatfinkBye.jpg and Gigantic Frankenstein http://members.toast.net/blackswampmodelers/BigFranky_Left.jpg.) The problem with the Hunchback is, you'd need a lot of volume to recreate his frizzy hairdo. For that, I would recommend the use of a two-part epoxy putty like AVES or Milliput. Both materials would give you the working time to bulk up the hair and simulate the tight curls before they set up. Also, the hair could be further worked with a rotary tool once either putty had cured.

The extra hair will prevent the ring from passing around the Hunchback's neck. This problem can be dealt with easily by nipping a little from the back of the ring, until the cut ends meet the hair. This will make it look like the ring has been covered by the extra locks.

If you do take this tack, I hope you'll post us some pictures so we can see how it works out.

Mark McG.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
beck: That's close to the idea I had: building up upon what is already there.

Mark: The accuracy of the Hunchback's look, specifically his facial features, is a bit of a moot point, really. As you yourself put it "... I think the Hunchback was INTENDED to RESEMBLE Lon Chaney" (my emphasis).
However, I do agree that the body is a closer match, certainly so with the hair pattern.

But all that is neither here nor there for my purposes. As I said, I quite like the expression on the Hunchback's face as is, regardless of who he was intended to resemble.

And for what it's worth, my concept of what the Hunchback "should" look like was far more influenced by the Classics Illustrated comic book version. Remember those? And they tended to be very faithful to the original work of literature from which they were drawn. (Not that that makes any real difference to me either). But the Hunchback's portrayal there was of a wild-haired redhead, rather than the frizzy Chaney or the whispy Laughton, or certainly the greasy dark Quinn version. Indeed, it wasn't until many, many years later, after I was already very familiar with the Classics illustrated, that I saw the films (still haven't managed to see the Quinn version yet). Consequently, I'm still very "loyal" to the visual impression that the comic left me with.

So ... what I would be wanting to attempt is to bulk up the top half of the hair (and thereby avoid the collar ring problem) in order to achieve a somewhat unkempt-looking pudding bowl cut (imagine the early Beatles on a bad hair day). And doing it with Aves is exactly what I was looking at in their product descriptions and wondered if anybody had done such a thing with the Hunchback. As I said above, beck at least seems to have the idea I had in mind (albeit a more appropriately tamed hairstyle) with the Phantom.

I won't be attempting this any time soon. I've never worked with Aves (or anything similar) and would require a good deal of practice before I commit to such a thing on the model itself. And to be honest, I was hoping someone had already done this so I could learn from there successes ... or failures. Maybe beck can give me a few tips on how he went about redoing the Phantom's hair.

cheers
 

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i was thinking Aves would be good too . from what i've heard it sounds very easy to work with .
i made an impression with latex of his hair giving me a little mold to work with . then i layered the acrylic paste into the latex mold . when it dried i had a thicker hunk of hair that i glued to the sides and back of his head . blended in with more paste and carved in some extra detail .
it went fairly easy but then i didn't really change the hairstyle just added to it and mussed it up a bit .

Mark , i've seen your work with the gel fiber stuff ( on Big Franky ) and like how it looks but i was a little afraid the fibers might be too big scalewise for the Phantom's hair .
i am thinking on using it when i get around to re doing my BF . :thumbsup:

lookin forward to seeing what ya do with him Frankie B
hb
 

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Guys,

AVES Apoxie Sculpt comes in sets of two plastic tubs, in a variety of colors; I use either gray or white, myself. It has the consistency of modeling clay and can be worked with any modeling tools you may have at hand. Before it cures Apoxie Sculpt can be smooth with water, although I have lately found that their Safety Solvent liquid does this job much better. Here's a link to the manufacturer's site, from which you can order their products: http://www.avesstudio.com/.

I remember seeing the Classics Illustrated Hunchback years ago. It wouldn't be very hard to add that spiky mop to the Aurora/PL head. The best course would be to add a little putty at a time to the assembled cranium, just to build up the overall outline of the hair. If the putty were kept away from the hair line, the molded contours in the plastic could be continued up into the mass of putty with a thin bladed tool. before the putty sets up, the hair can be smoothed with a brush wet with water or Safety Solvent. Once the putty has completely hardened it can be worked with a Dremel tool, sandpaper, etc.

beck,

The fibers in the textured acrylic gel medium are very small, and would work fine for those long, straggly locks on the Phantom's noggin. As you can imagine, these fibers are scattered willy-nilly in the medium, so there is some work involved in applying the gel to the model, then manipulating those fibers so they run in the direction that you want. I used thin brushes and toothpicks to accomplish this; a neat thing you can do is make some fibers stand out away from the head like flyaway hair. I did that with the hair at the tips of BRF's ears, and also along King Kong's jawline.

Mark McG.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the link Mark. That's exactly where I was the other night. But I was also looking at their FIXIT Sculpt (apparently a new product) in conjunction with one of the articles you can access on their site.

In that article (with accompanying photos) they show an example of a Wolverine action figure that has had his helmut "wings" elongated with this FIXIT Sculpt. It looks pretty good, and that's what gave me the idea as to how to go about modifying the Hunchback's do, just as you described "... [adding] a little putty at a time to the assembled cranium, just to build up the overall outline of the hair".

Either product seems very easy to work with, and both seem like they would be able to do the job. But like I said in a previous post, I have no experience at all with these modeling putties.

By the way, if you look at Disney's Quasimodo (I know, I know) their interpretation of the Hunchback's hair is reasonably close to the mop top, short back & sides idea I have in mind ... minus the part in the middle. Actually, there have been many renditions of the Hulk's hair that have taken a similar approach. There's something about that kind of haircut that suggests dimwittedness, not to mention poverty. And there lies the problem with the Aurora Hunchback's hair as is, in my opinion. Not only is it too neat and tidy, it also seems to be historically and socio-economically out of place. It's way too 20th century and too affluent! lol.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
beck: If I'm understanding your description correctly, I don't think your approach — although it obviously worked for you, and very well — would work for me in this situation.

You created a fuller head of hair based on the original — a very clever technique of first taking an impression, I might add — whereas I envision adding some bulk by way of "fly away tufts", which would completely disregard the hairstyle as is (except I'd want to leave the back and side pretty much alone). So what I imagined was adding on bits and pieces, here and there directly to the model, until the desired effect was achieved.

If you read my reply above, you might have a better idea of what I'm after. Heck, I'm still working on what I want it to look like in the end! :)
 

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Frankie,

You've mentioned that you've never used epoxy putty before. You should know that although tit will cure into a solid material, it is still softer than the styrene. If you decided that you didn't like part or all of a "hair replacement" for Quasimodo, it wouldn't be imposssible to break the cured putty off and try again.

Also, this product is terrific for filling gaps, creating small features, etc. For example, the texture of the Hunchback's shirt will make it difficult to hide the seams. If you fill them with a little AVES, you can feather the edges of the putty into the surrounding areas of the shirt. Then you can go back and add the shirt texture to the smooth putty by poking it with the end of a small brush handle or something.

If I make mix up more putty than I can use in a single session, I try to apply it to another project - reinforcing the inside of a delicate part or something. As a last resort, I shape it into an irregular form and press a piece of coarse sandpaper into it for texture, and voila! - instant rocks.

Mark McG.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
That's an excellent piece of information, Mark. ("... although it will cure into a solid material, it is still softer than the styrene. If you decided that you didn't like part or all of a "hair replacement" for Quasimodo, it wouldn't be imposssible to break the cured putty off and try again."). I always assumed these modeling putties dried/cured as hard as styrene.

And the tip about using a modeling putty to hide seams and at the same time restore texture is also good. I came across an article somewhere about hiding seams, and Godzilla was used as an example. But the technique required first making latex molds. Perhaps on something as complex or as significant as the seams on Godzilla such a technique might be warranted. But using a putty, as you suggest, seems (pun intended) so much easier.

cheers
 

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Since I started using putty again in my old age, I have been able to use it to hide a lot of seams such as those in hair, and other things that should not show a seam. When I reposed my Iron Man kit I carved lines into the new areas that were filled in with Aves Apoxie Sculpt, to look like it matched the patterns of the parts nearby. It worked great. Some I did right after puttying, and some I did the next day. I think the putty does dry harder over a longer time, but in the short term it is easy to carve, trim, sand, etc.

Using these types of putty is really extremely easy, as long as you mix exactly 1:1 from both parts, and mix it very, very well. If you don't do this, it might not harden. I have had excellent results just using water to thin and blend it, but I hear that the product Aves sells for this purpose works much better. So far I have not felt the need to buy it.

I highly recommend this stuff!:thumbsup:
 

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... But the technique required first making latex molds...
That's not as onerous as it sounds. You can use a theatrical product or a latex-based masking liquid. Several layers are painted on a section of the model that has the texture you want to copy. Once a sufficient thickness has been built up - 6 to 10, depending on the product, you have a rubber stamp that you can press into the soft putty to hide the seam.

Bruce,

AVES' "Safety Solvent" works on the putty even after it's begun to set up. It smooths the surface much better than water. I still use H20 to lubricate fingers and tools, but when I want that final even finish, I go with the solvent.

Mark McG.
 
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