Wargaming Tradecraft: Getting Started: De-Spruing

Getting Started: De-Spruing


Continuing after the previous Getting Started post on Unboxing Miniatures, we'll look at more basic steps to hobbying. Some figures come in "sprues", which are plastic or metal waste product from the molding process that hold a bunch of bits. All the pieces first have to be cut out.

This hasn't been something I've had to usually deal with in Privateer Press' miniatures, but very common with Games Workshop's minis.





In the photo above, I show myself using snips to remove a couple shoulder-pads from a sprue. The middle photo is from using side-cutters, (Normal snips you probably use.) while the photo on the right is using wire-cutters. The difference is that side cutters are larger and don't cut as close. This is why I use wire cutters.

Below, you can see another comparison of the two types of snips. Wire-cutters on the left this time, side-cutters on the right. Notice how much thinner the wire cutters are. They can really get in there and close to the foot.



Some people twist parts out of sprues, but all this does is damage the parts. Look below at the tearing that happens to the plastic when the shoulder pad is twisted out.


Sometimes it's unavoidable to have tabs from the sprue left in hard to reach places. The next post in this Getting Started series will cover removing mold lines and such, but basically it's a matter of using a knife. (Or a file for younger kids.)



Something I also recommend is getting bits boxes to sort everything in. If you're not assembling everything all at once, you'll be glad you did. Keep heads in one compartment, arms in another, etc.

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