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Gelatinous Cube
Manufacturer: Scratchbuilt
Category: Fantasy

by Temperance




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Gelatinous Cube

Gelatinous Cube

This is the most difficult miniature that I've worked on and it consumed most of my limited free time of November 2002. I thank Mick for a conversation we had earlier this month starting me in this direction; we were brainstorming ideas for what to do with clear resin and this came up.

For those playing at home, turn your friendly WotC Monster Manual to page 145 and look at the picture which is the inspiration for my version of the Gelatinous Cube. It measures approximately 45 mm from the bottom of the base to the top of the figure. Inside is a Reaper sword, an old GW plastic skeleton with the skull replaced by a Reaper Skull, an arm from Mordheim, and some gold and silver glitter for coins. The arm that sticks out of the cube still has skin because it hasn't be digested yet...

Making the figure took several steps. First, I needed to make the original mold for the cube. I coated a 40mm styrofoam cube with milliput, and then sanded the sides smooth. As a straight cube would be boring, I then wrapped some sandpaper around a soup can and sanded every side (other than the bottom) horizontally and vertically. This made each corner poke out a little more than the sides. (I then attempted to sculpt drips on it, but later I found out that that was a waste of time.)

Next, I made a mold out of MicroMark's one-to-one room temperature vulcanizing rubber. I picked up some clear resin from Castin'craft and this is my first time using it. (I'm also making some crystals out of the same stuff, but I'm still working on those.) The clear resin is made for paperweights and stuff like that by pouring the resin on in layers with the object in between. The skeleton (without arm) and a small amount of gold/silver glitter was stuck against the edge and the resin was allowed to set. After it was removed, I drilled two holes into the side of the cube, and the sword and arm were stuck into the two holes and filled with more clear resin. (If you look at the top down view, you might be able to make out where the drill hole is.)

At this point, it looked awful, and I was really worried that it would be a failure. I painted the sides of the cube with a thin layer of resin, and that helped make it look more gelatin-like. That extra coat saved the figure! The cube was attached to the base with some more resin, and above is the finished product.

I have since been directed to another how-to page on creating Gelatinous Cubes; if interested, check it out at http://www.geocities.com/steimle4/miniatures/ . I was planning on writing an article myself, but a brilliant one was written by "Panoramix, Le Druide" at http://www.zenzerovich.com/miniatures/gelcube/ -- it uses the exact same materials as I used.

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Viewer comments:
#26648 Rating: 10 21 Jan 2003
This absolutely perfect. Love the curved sides, gold coins, and the uneaten hand protruding from the front. Perfect.
#21939 Rating: 10 6 Dec 2002
Peter what can I say you out did yourself on this one..its a exact copy of the cube in the monster manual..with time and patience I dont think there isnt much you cant do when you set your mind to it..excellent job my friend
#21472 Rating: 8 2 Dec 2002
l'idee est excellente.........ce truc dans un diorama,genre avec un magicien qui lancerais des sorts de glace,ca pourrait le faire trop grave
#21082 Rating: 10 28 Nov 2002
all i can say is OH MY GOD THATS SO COOL GREAT JOB!!!!!!!!!
#20978 Rating: 10 27 Nov 2002
This is astounding! It looks like an ice cube. I'm expecting it to melt!
#20934 Rating: 8 26 Nov 2002
So cool it's scary...
#20932 Rating: 9 26 Nov 2002
Now this is a very, VERY cool idea! Now I'm all inspired to try making one of these up too! Hope mine looks decent.
#20869 Rating: 10 26 Nov 2002
Hey, I just looked at it again and I was even more amazed! It looks so good! I am staggered.
#20820 Rating: 10 25 Nov 2002
A labour of love! I can't believe you did that.
#20788 Rating: 10 25 Nov 2002
i wonder.... if you were to give it a ,say red or green wash would it look cooler.hhhmmm???othwise great job


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