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Dealing with Sticky resin and lead rot in white metal kits

Discussion in 'General Figure Talk' started by yellowcat, Feb 6, 2020.

  1. yellowcat Well-Known Member

    Sticky resin

    Have you ever bought a resin kit that had uncured resin areas, or the whole resin kit was uncured and felt slightly tacky to the touch, or when you handle the kit you notice that when you moved your hand hold on the kit, you found that you had left finger print impressions in the resin because it was soft. The worse part is when you prime the kit in preparation to paint it, only to find that an oily substance leaches up through the primer. The reason for these problems is because the two part resin mixture wasn't mixed equally before it was poured into the kit mould, so the resin is never fully cured.

    How to cure the problem?

    When you take your resin kit out of the box and realize the resin feels tacky and uncured.

    1. If this is a newly purchased item, notify the kit company to send you a replacement.

    2. If this is an old kit in your grey army, before you do anything else to the kit, put the sticky parts in a glass ware in the bathroom sink or bathroom bathtub and fill the glass ware with hot water until the water level is about two inches above the tallest part of the kit.

    3. Pour in some hot boiling water from a kettle off the stove. The boiling water increases the thoroughness of the curing process. Now just let the resin parts soak in the water until the water is cold. You may need to do this couple of times.

    4. Remove the resin parts from the water and you will notice a white chalky substance on the surface of the resin. This is noticeable if the resin is allowed to dry, but you don't need to wait for it to dry. You can now wash the resin parts with soap and water like you normally do to remove mold release from your model kit.

    5. Scrub the kit thoroughly with a soft toothbrush. Once the kit is thoroughly scrubbed and the entire white residue has been removed, just rinsed the kit and let it air dry and then you are ready to do your assembly and other finishing procedures. If you have an ultrasonic cleaner you can clean the parts in the cleaner.
    This resin curing process is known as ***SHOCKING THE RESIN***.

    6. Please be aware boiling water will deform resin which can also correct warped parts. For small parts, do not use boiling water, clean it with rubbing alcohol and coated the parts with thin cyanoacrylate super glue.

    Lead rot lead disease in white metal kit

    You may notice some parts of you vintage white metal kits in your grey army are covered with a layer of grey residue or the surface is full of pits and peeling away. This is lead rot or lead disease for figures produced before the 1990 made from lead alloy. The grey residue is hard to remove with sand paper, wire brush and Dremel tool.

    Here are couple links on this topic.



    Here is my way to stop lead rot:

    1. Place the parts in a plastic container and soak the parts in Super Clean degreaser (do not mix with water) for about two hours or longer time as needed. The degreaser will dissolve the grey residue with no ill effect on the white metal.

    2. Put on some latex gloves and remove the parts from the degreaser. Scrub the parts thoroughly with a soft toothbrush in soap and water. (For small parts you can use a paint brush or Q tips). Rinse the parts and let it air dry. The degreaser is reusable.

    3. Place the parts in another plastic container and soak the parts in white vinegar for about 20 minutes to get the lead acid off the figure. Clean and rinse the parts with a soft brush or in an ultrasonic cleaner and let it air dry.

    4. After cleaning, prime the figure with a light coat of clear metal primer (polyurethane) follow up with another coat of your favourite primer. Do not use any water based primer for this. You are now ready to do your assembly and finishing.


  2. Tom W. Active Member

    I have all the Michael Roberts figures in my GA.They spent their life in my cellar (dry and not muffy) with many,many others.Some of the parts,mainly the weapons and hands,are of metal.And they changend in a very darkgrey,fragile state over the years.At the littlest touch,they break.We in Germany called this "Zinnpest/Tin plague".
    Some of the old Beneito sets out of the nineties have partly your discribed effect.
    I contacted Mike Steltzel from MR and he send me all the replacement parts,which I need,years after I bought his soldierboyz.(y)
    And the resin problem have some of the Figures from minor companies,Des Kit from France for example.
    Thanx for your hints and tips!!(y)
    Babelfish and blaster like this.
  3. blaster Active Member

    Hi Felix,

    Very good advice and thanks!

    Rgds Victor
  4. Oda A Fixture

    Pure Gold as usual when Yellowcat shares his extensive knowledge.Thank you mate,you've probably just saved a lot of stored kits.

  5. Nap A Fixture

    Hi Felix

    Great advice on these potential issues ...very useful particularly those who have WM


    Oda likes this.
  6. Banjer Active Member

    Thanks Felix, you sure know your stuff! (y)

  7. kagemusha A Fixture

    Useful advice (y)

    My one concern is that boiling water can...and will...cause resin to deform...and remain so...if you leave it for too long...this being the primary way of correcting warped resin parts initially...which 'seasoned' modellers will be aware of...newer modelers less so.
    yellowcat likes this.
  8. Tecumsea PlanetFigure Supporter

    Funny you should raise the issue of resin not curing-I threw a Semper Fidelis figure in the bin two nights ago with this very problem. I haven't raised it with El Greco because it is not their fault and I don't see that they should be penalised by it.

    The only company I have found to suffer from metal rot funnily enough is David Grieve-only two examples one of them a Hussar and the other the Mounted Guard Camel regt in the Sudan in 65mm.
    I binned the Camel as it was past redemption.

  9. Mirofsoft A Fixture

    You don't have to cure anything, just never buy again from this supplier
    Don't worry there are still, 800 other suppliers
  10. yellowcat Well-Known Member


    Thanks Ron,
    I have edited my thread.

    kagemusha likes this.
  11. kagemusha A Fixture

    Thanks for taking my concern in the vein it was intended Felix.


  12. theBaron A Fixture

    Oh, I think it is their issue to resolve, though. They probaby get their raw materials from another vendor, but in the end, it's their label on the box. If I were the one who sold it to you, and you as a customer were important to me (and you would be), I would want to know about any product of mine that didn't meet or even exceed your expectations. A bad batch of resin would make me either check the mix and the rest of my process, if I mixed it myself, or follow up with my supplier. You're the customer, and you're always right. Customer Service 101.


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