How do you sculpt chinscales like those found on French Nap Cavalry helmets???

Discussion in 'Sculpting' started by Rob Pye, Aug 16, 2019.

  1. Rob Pye New Member

    Hi all,

    I am looking to sculpt a load of chin-scales as those found on Napoleonic French cavalry helmets (like Line Lancers). I am going to be doing these in small scale, for 28mm figures. Hence, I am hoping some of you pros out there can please share with me your approach on how best to do this.

    Surely, there must be some sort of tool that you guys use to make all those little circular scales.

    While I will be doing 28mm figures, people's approach to doing larger ones (ex 54mm) should be useful as the approach should (he hopes!) be the same or similar.

    Thanks in advance for your assistance!

  2. DaddyO A Fixture

    Hi Rob
    I work mainly in 54 myself (28 is too small for my old eyes) ;)
    You can get away with a lot by careful painting since details are often a bit 'overscale'. I did make something similar for a French cavalryman in 54 mm using Duro shaped to the whole strap and then used a small brass tube cut in half to give the scale effect.

  3. svt Active Member

    I do something like this for a scale of 1/30 (for 28 mm, work requires only greater accuracy).

    A strip of material adheres to the desired location.

    The tool to apply the transverse rows of scales.
    2.jpg 3.jpg

    The tool to round the edges of the marking of the scales.
    4.jpg 5.jpg

    With the flatness of the tip of the knife blade, give the final shape for individual scales.

    The method is effective both for epoxy putty and for polymer clays.
    7.jpg 8.jpg
    Tonton, Katjuscha, Manfred and 9 others like this.
  4. Rob Pye New Member

    Thanks guys for sharing your knowledge, it is much appreciated!

    @SVT, what type of tool are you using in the photos above?
  5. svt Active Member

    The first tool is a stack for working with wax, although I polished the dimensions of its ends to make them sharper and more elegant. The second tool is a regular knife for scale modeling.

    The first instrument has one tip thin and sharp, but oblate, its shape is elliptical. From the opposite end is a long, thick spade, slightly curved.
    tools_02.jpg tools_03.jpg tools_04.jpg tools_05.jpg
    Tonton likes this.
  6. Richard Baxter Well-Known Member

    Dental tools are pretty good for this type of work too. Ask your dentist if he/she has any old ones that they might be finished with, if you don't want to buy them.
    svt likes this.
  7. Kevtk135 Active Member

    I'll have to look up where I got them, but I have a set of tools that does scales from 1 thru 5mm sizes. I quickly did a few imprints - the top imprints was the 3mm, and the ones below were the 4. As indicated the tool on the bottom is 1mm. HTH
    Tonton and svt like this.
  8. Rob Pye New Member

    Kev, the one looks like it might work...please do let me know where you found these at.
  9. Kevtk135 Active Member

    Look here -
    I didn't recognize it at first as his old store was on Etsy. Anyway I remember him offering them as a set. I don't see that now.
    But I guess if you ask, he may be able to put something together for you.
    Of the smallest ones I have the 1, 1.5, 2 and 3 mm . HTH
  10. Kimmo Well-Known Member

    Seems to me you could make your own from brass or aluminum tubing, then mount that in a shank or pin vise.

    Scotty likes this.
  11. Rob Pye New Member

    Okay, I have sent a few messages to the seller on Bonanza about his items but had no response at all... :(
  12. gerryj199 PlanetFigure Supporter

    Just sharing my experience with the vendor for others.

    I went to the Bonanza site and ordered a set of 3 tools for creating the scales. Unfortunately, they never arrived, and there was no tracking information. The seller initially answered a question to explain that he didn't use tracking as most people weren't prepared to pay for it, but after that did not reply to any of my other requests. I eventually had to file a PayPal claim to get a refund.

    It was a very disappointing experience, but hopefully others might have more luck.
  13. Rob Pye New Member

    Sorry to hear that GerryJ...I gave up on the Seller and that Bonanza site, as I heard nothing back.
  14. Kevtk135 Active Member

    Oh Jeez, sorry that happened. Good thing you didn't wait too long as Paypal is quick to resolve these things by giving your money back.

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