Holding your mini while painting
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Thread: Holding your mini while painting

  1. #1

    Default Holding your mini while painting

    When I am painting I sometimes notice that some edges of the mini have paint rubbed off by holding the mini. Retouching this afterwards is necessary of course, but not always give good results.

    I try to hold the figure by its base most of the time, but sometimes you accidently hold your hand against they mini.

    So my question is: do you use something to hold your mini while painting. I\'ve seen a tool for this in my hobby store, but this thing is rather expensive (50 EUR I believe). So I\'m looking for another solution...

  2. #2


    there is an article by borg about how to make a painting rig in the articles section which you might want to look at. i myself just hold onto the mini or base when painting. every now and again a little ipaint is wiped off or some paint on my hand is transferred onto the model but i prefer to hold the model. i dont know why i just find it more comfortable.

  3. #3
    Superfreak!!! Dragonsreach's Avatar
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    I use a large cork, gluing the base of the mini on to it. (These are the ones used to seal demi-johns for home brewing).
    I find this a comfortable and cost effective little device. (£2.00 for 6 in the home brew section of Boots the chemist [UK])

    Best part of it is that us can sand doen the wase glue and have a fresh section to glue on to.

  4. #4


    The old citadel paint pots are great for this (imo) if you have any. Stick a bit of Blu-Tak (its cheap) on the pot (do you have this in the US?? Not sure, however its like a blue coloured putty that can be broken into pieces and is sticky but removeable [people use it to put posters up in walls]) and then stick the pot to the bottom of the base. You can hold the pot and paint without touching the mini. Word of warning though - be careful it doesn\'t become unstuck if its a particularly heavy / large miniature!

  5. #5


    I just hold the mini and touch up any paint that is rubbed off.

  6. #6


    Don\'t throw away your old blisters from your mini\'s. Cut a small slit in the top of one (for slotted minis) then glue your mini into it. It provides a stable base to both hold and put your mini down and afterwords you can poull him right of the blister.
    If you were silly and used super glue to glue the mini down, the blister can be cut around and then be sanded or filed off because its so thin. :D

  7. #7

    Default Holding your mini

    I\'ve found that a short piece of wooden dowel which has a diameter less than the base of the mini works very well. Use a small amount of glue to stick the mini on the end of the dowel. This gives you all the control of holding the actual mini while preventing the smudging of the touch. After the mini is done, slight upward pressure on the bottom of the base pops it off the dowel. Works great for me!:bouncy:

  8. #8

    Default touch up

    I usually just pick a certain place to always hold when I\'m painting. It\'s usually the weapon. Even still, there are usually other parts of the model that mysteriously lose paint, like the knuckles.

    Anyway, I know that I\'m gonna have to do touch ups when the model is done anyway, so I just hold the model in the same place every time. Then I base the model. Then I paint that last place that I used for grip. Then I varnish. Then two days later I find a place I missed in the touch ups.:rolleyes:


  9. #9

    Default Model handling

    I currently favor cutting the slottabase from the minis, and drill the bottom of the feet to pin them with brass wire or metal paperclips. Then the mini can be stuck to either a cork stopper or a regular pencil eraser (obviously, not the ones that come glued to the pencils, Doh!).

    For Reaper minis, I\'d suggest a tiny drop of superglue to one plastic soda cap. Afterpainting, you just have to squeeze hard on the cap and the mini will detach without a fuzz.

    I even used that method with GW minis, although you have to be somewhat more careful not to pop the mini out while painting it, since those plastic slottabases don\'t have such a large contact area.

  10. #10

    Default Holding minis

    I use large black paperclips to hold slotta base minis, or I glue them to an old 50mm base. I also like to save the sponges that come in the blister packs. If I need to set the mini down, I set it on the sponge and the paint doesn\'t chip.

  11. #11


    I read about using roofing nails. Blue-tac (yes we have it in the US and for once it\'s called the same thing:) ) it to the bottom of the mini then drill holes in a piece of wood to set it down in when not handling. I find that for storage of WIP and varnishing it works great, but I find it hard to hold and usually do what Barkel does with designating an area to remain unpainted until the last. I\'m going to try drilling a hole into the end of a dowel and see if the bigger grip is easier to deal with than the shaft of a nail.

    So far I just feel more comfortable holding the actual mini, usually with thumb under the base and finger on the tip of the weapon.

  12. #12


    The sponge trick also works well if you then have to exert force on a painted mini for any reason. Like, if you need to straighen a bent part, or pry one off a paint pot if the blu-tac sticks a little too well. Wrap the sponge around a sturdy portion of the mini and pull/twist evenly. Pick one of the softer sponges (GW), not the scratchy ones (Dark Age). I find, in general, that it\'s best to avoid touching a paint job with bare hands at all. The oils on your skin damage the finish (and can reduce subsequent paint adhesion) and even the softest fingertips are extremely abrasive at that scale. I *hate* doing touch-ups.

  13. #13


    I my self use a standard wine cork and some BlueStuff to stick the mini to it. This works great and when your done painting the mini will come off real easy.

  14. #14
    Superfreak!!! Dragonsreach's Avatar
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    I *hate* doing touch-ups.
    Too true there\'s nothing worse than thinking you\'re finished and then you take the pictures to put up on the site and there\'s an air bubble point you missed:flame:
    That\'s what usually happens to me, or you get a friend to look at a fugure and they say \"Hey look you missed the ***** \"
    Copious practise at biting one\'s lip in the presence of minors comes in handy.lol

  15. #15


    Originally posted by No Such AgencyI find, in general, that it\'s best to avoid touching a paint job with bare hands at all. The oils on your skin damage the finish
    I neglected that I usually wear a white cotton glove on my left hand (the one that handles minis) when I paint. I bought a box from lightimpressionsdirect.com . They sell stuff for taking care of photographs but much of it is useful for other hobbies.

  16. #16


    I usually just hang on to a 28mm base.

  17. #17


    I remember when I snubbed my nose at painting rigs, now I don\'t work without one! I found that holding onto the base was a little weird and made me screw up because my left hand went one way while my right hand went the other. My parents have to take different medications such as vitamens and sucha nd I asked them to save the bottles. I originally intedned to used them for paint, as they would be somewhat air-tight, but one day I found that the cap of a standard pill bottle is about the size of a 28mm base. I then used some double sided tape and viola! Painting rig. Since minis are heavy and there\'s nothing in the bottle to balance it, I use sand, as bigger material such as BBS would shift while I am painting.

    I\'ve had to find some different methods for bigger minis (I had one so large, it needed a spray can!) but I primarily go with this because it won\'t scrap of paint where I keep touching the mini to pick it up. It also stops the natural oils in my hands (or brush soap) from damaging the neatly done base.

  18. #18

    Default screwcaps

    Ah the versatility of the screw caps!

    The cap from a 20 oz soda and some blue-tac works for me. For folks that need a little more gripping power, take the same screw cap and screw it back onto the 20 oz. soda bottle...viola instant adjustable mini holders! Need a bigger handle, go for a two liter.

    This works great with all kinds of bottles and jugs. A gallon milk jug even has a built in handle!

    Can\'t beat it for cheapness, just the price of some blue tac! plus the price of all the food products I pour down the drain, so I can have the container! :D

  19. #19


    Originally posted by vincegamer
    I usually wear a white cotton glove on my left hand (the one that handles minis) when I paint.
    I Don\'t mean to poke fun, but that has to be an amusing sight! Please tell me you don\'t have Michael Jackson music playing at the same time!:D:D

    Seriously, though, that is a pretty good idea (the glove not the music).

  20. #20


    I usually old the mini by the base or one of those pinty things that sticks out (usually the weapon). If there isn\'t any of thos I\'m just very carfull of were i put my fingers:D But I still have to do thos dreaded touch ups cuz there\'s usually paint that rubs of when i put the mini down, but that dosn\'t happen very often (Thanks God!!! :innocent: ) Has for puting the mini on some kind of bigger base or bottle i tried it but it didn\'t feel right, and the result wasn\'t far from a mini who would have fallen in a bottle of paint, I just have to hold the mini!!!

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