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fraggle

Improving the Reaper Miniatures boxed sets

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I was lucky enough to get one of the new Reaper Miniatures boxed sets when they were on sale (briefly) several weeks back. The figurines are as lovely as ever, but - and there's no way to put this nicely - the set itself is shoddily put together. Some people will have seen the sad tale of my badly made Arachnotron (I fortunately managed to get him replaced). I also found the label on the front was stuck on poorly so that there's an ugly crease.

The biggest issue though, which really shows what little care was put into these sets, was the inside packing that holds the figures. Click here for a photo that shows what I mean. Large figures have been crammed into foam slots that are too small to hold them, and bits of the dividers cut out where more space was essential. It's hard to imagine how it could have looked any uglier.

The saying goes that it's better to light one candle than curse the darkness. To that end, I've been working on a design for a custom shaped replacement for the foam insert. My friend owns a Laser cutting shop and has kindly helped me turn my design into reality. I did the first cut in foam tonight. Here's the result:



(Click through for full-size)

This is really only a first prototype but it's already pretty good. I need to adjust some of the shapes slightly and I'm not sure about the material (I want to use a denser foam, and black instead of white).

Once I'm done I will of course release the design so that others can cut their own replacements if they want. But I'm curious to know if anyone else with one of these sets is interested getting one of these inserts. Once I've perfected the design I can potentially cut a whole bunch of them.

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fraggle said:

But I'm curious to know if anyone else with one of these sets is interested getting one of these inserts.

I'll be interested in a set if postage to Australia isn't too savage.

Looks good. All we need now are new labels, mine's also badly creased.

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I'd have to check the shipping prices; it might be expensive, although as shipping is usually done on weight maybe it might not be too bad.

It would certainly be nice to fix the labels too. Maybe we can recreate the design and print our own?

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Professional collectors tip: save the original foam insert. As a collector I know even little things are valuable later, dont throw anything away. That white insert reminded me of ice first. Miniatures served chilled, not stirred :D

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Waffenak said:

Professional collectors tip: save the original foam insert. As a collector I know even little things are valuable later, dont throw anything away. That white insert reminded me of ice first. Miniatures served chilled, not stirred :D

While I don't doubt it, I won't understand it, as that original foam looks like total shit. Literally, in the case of the upper panel.

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Quasar said:

While I don't doubt it, I won't understand it, as that original foam looks like total shit. Literally, in the case of the upper panel.


Even shit can turn to gold after time

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Waffenak said:

Professional collectors tip: save the original foam insert. As a collector I know even little things are valuable later, dont throw anything away.

Oh, definitely. I'm not throwing anything away. The inserts are barely glued into the boxes (are they even glued at all?)

That white insert reminded me of ice first. Miniatures served chilled, not stirred :D

Yeah, I'm not too happy about the colour. I want to see if I can find some black or grey foam to use instead. It will match the rest of the box better. The foam I'm using here is some leftover packing material that was being thrown out at work. It's quite different to the 'spongy' foam used for the original inserts.

The foam I used is about a cm thick. That means that three layers of it are needed to properly encase the figures (the bottom layer is just a blank base). I'm planning to come up with different designs for the first and second layers (from the top). Some of the larger figures need two layers, while the smaller ones only need a single layer (if they have two they end up sitting in a deep hole). Using two layers it should also be possible to 'shape' to the figures: the Cyberdemon and the Arachnotron for example.

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fraggle said:

I'd have to check the shipping prices; it might be expensive, although as shipping is usually done on weight maybe it might not be too bad.

For international shipping both weight and volume have to be considered. If the replacement inserts can be squished into a smaller volume without loosing their shape, that would help keep costs down. By way of comparison, shipping the boxed set to Oz cost me $24.75.

It would certainly be nice to fix the labels too. Maybe we can recreate the design and print our own?

Why not! A4-sized labels are easily come by though trimming them to the right shape manually would require steady hands. Suppose the first thing we need is a template, I managed to peel my label without doing it any further damage and will start scanning once I've attached it to some suitable backing material.

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GreyGhost said:

Why not! A4-sized labels are easily come by though trimming them to the right shape manually would require steady hands.

This can potentially be laser-cut too.

Suppose the first thing we need is a template, I managed to peel my label without doing it any further damage and will start scanning once I've attached it to some suitable backing material.

Goes without saying, but ideally you want to scan on a flatbed scanner at the highest resolution possible. Maybe afterwards we can touch it up if necessary.

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fraggle said:

Goes without saying, but ideally you want to scan on a flatbed scanner at the highest resolution possible.

That's what I'm using, and trying to get the small print as straight as possible. 1200dpi probably exceeds the label printer's resolution and at some 250MB the bitmap's already quite large, so I doubt we need to go any higher.

Here's a 72dpi thumbnail to kick off, and see if it inspires someone to re-create the label instead of fixing its defects. Even at that resolution the creasing is obvious.


(700x490 - 83k)

The final set of scans will be PNGs, and bloody big.


EDIT - It's not just the trailing ends of the D and M that have been cropped, they've also done a terrible job around the top edges. If a re-creation is in order I suggest using the Registered Doom manual artwork, which has a higher level of detail.

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The coolest one for me is hands down the mancubus.

Also the cacodemon & the pain element look like their hopping on one foot or something.

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