Restoration and Refurbishment

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Restoration

Damage to your miniatures is an inevitable part of gaming. Over time, models get dropped, banged up, knocked off table tops, and stepped on. Our restoration service was designed to help you get your fallen soldiers back into the fray quickly! Depending on the extent of the damage, paint is touched up, lost or broken limbs are replaced, and figures are generally restored to their ideal condition. We can even add a few effects and embellishments to spruce up your existing models and make them feel new again! After any restoration, models are first gloss varnished to increase contrast, then matte varnished to ensure extra protection. Restoration pricing is based on the level of damage to be repaired and the level of painting desired. See our painting page for a full explanation of our painting levels (such as Silver, Electrum, Gold, etc). For example ‘Labor’ cost will be lower on Bronze level models than Silver level models, etc.
Level of Restoration Damage Indicators Price (labor based on equivalent paint level of model)
Touch Ups No damage, but some paint chipping. Typical wear and tear for a model being lugged around in a foam case. 10% price of Labor
Minor Restoration <25% overall damage Some damage. Paint chipping, limbs have broken off but are included or are easy to replace. 25% of Labor
Major Restoration 50% overall damage Large or multiple instances of paint chipping. Damage that will require repair and possibly replacement, but little to no resculpting or pinning. 50% of Labor
Critical Restoration* 75% overall damage Model is missing multiple pieces and will require significant repair, possibly including sculpting. Many areas will need repainting. 75% of Labor
Missing Parts No cost to replace if readily available and common. Cost of materials if highly coveted, expensive, or hard to come by.
*In the event of Critical Restoration, it may be advisable to strip the model down and repaint. If so, see our painting page  for standard rates.

Refurbishment

This landraider was touched up, weathered, and given some OSL love!

This landraider was touched up, weathered, and given some OSL love!

Unlike restoration, which involves effecting repairs to a damaged model, refurbishment is more akin to a ‘miniature makeover‘. Models are given a face life or new look by adding a few effects, such as weathering or object source lighting. This is different than a repaint, since we aren’t really removing any part, but are rather building on the existing color scheme and taking it to the next level. When a client requests refurbishment, typical changes might include:
  • Object Source Lighting
  • Patina/Oxidation effects
  • Rust Effects
  • Blood/Gore effects
  • Grime/Dirt/Weathering
  • Vehicle Damage (chipping, melta damage, etc)
  • New Magnetized Options
In most cases these prices are covered under Effects and Embellishments. For clients desiring refurbishment that is not listed on our Ala Cart Pricing Page, then simply contact us with details about your project and we’ll work out a quote for you right away.

Stripping and Repainting

We often get the question ‘can models be repainted?’ Having repainted many models over the years we can tell you that it rarely if ever impacts the final painted quality of a model. Repainting is a reasonable option for most models, and is a cost effective option to save on materials for clients.
This model was stripped down before being reprimed.

This model was stripped down before being reprimed.

The Stripping Process

The process for stripping models involves soaking the models in a degreaser solution, then using soft bristled brushes to agitate the loose paint. In some cases we will use a Sonic Scrubber, which sends sonic vibrations through a thin water bath. For stubborn models, we then resoak the models and start the process again. In most cases 1-2 soaks will get off about 90-95% of old paint The exceptions to this are enamel based paints, which tend to bond with plastics. See our Stripping Disclaimer, below.
After repainting the model looks good as new!

After repainting the model looks good as new!

In the case of pewter models, we soak them in an acetone bath, which is much more aggressive than degreaser. Fortunately the white metal can withstand this acidic emulsion. Afterwards the models are brushed, rinsed and often re-glued before being re-primed.

What does it cost to strip a model of its old paint?

As a rule of thumb, the cost to strip a model of old paint makes up the same cost as assembling the model. This takes into account that in many cases, figure will have to be reassembled after being stripped down. Put another way, it costs you about the same price to have a new model painted as it does to have the same model stripped of old paint and then repainted. Stripping paint is not way to save money on labor at White Metal Games, but is a great way to save money on materials. See our Looted Army special for further suggestions. Valorum 11 We also occasionally offer our ‘Salvage Ops Special’.

Stripping Disclaimer

It’s worth noting that stripping models isn’t the right solution for every miniature. In some cases the enamels have bonded to the casting medium in such a way that paint can only be stripped down to a point. And while this is perfectly fine for lower level projects, for Gold level and above we always recommend going with a new model to ensure details remain as well defined as possible.