I recently found a Pawniard Pokemon toy online for a few dollars. Knowing that Takara Tomy ARTS and other Pokemon production companies never made a Pawniard figure, I knew it was one of the made in China Fake Pokemon toys, but aesthetically it looked pretty good for a fake. The only problem was its paint job...or lack there of.
So, I took it upon my self, and my experience with sculpting and crafts, to repaint the little critter. To do so, I had to take the little figure apart so I could properly clean and paint the parts as needed and to not paint over areas that didn't need it. To take the figure apart, I used a simple trick that works well when taking apart soft PVC figures for repairs or reconstruction. Hot Water! Just give the little figure a dip in hot water for about 30-seconds, and it becomes very soft and flexible, and will not crack and split as easily. Funny thing about this little figure, the Chinese fake toys are mostly made of a hard PVC Plastic, which will allow you to be a little more forceful when taking them apart, but care is still recommended.
In total, the figure was made of 10-parts. Poor little guy's face looked scared or terrified at what I was doing. ^^;;
I did discover by disassembling the figure, the factories that produce and assemble these toys loves to use Super Glue very liberally. You can see all the Super Glue Residue just caked on these pieces here;
To remove these chunks of glue, I turned to using my Acetone (Fingernail Polish Remover). It is my go to chemical for any paint and glue removal.
***Do be warned!!! Acetone is a volatile, and flammable liquid. Use only in a work place that is well ventillated, and away from high tempertures! Gloves are recommended too. If you do not wear gloves, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after use, and do not touch your eyes!
If you are like me and want to repair or repaint a figure, and you want to remove paint and glue with acetone, you MUST take care with soft PVC toys. Acetone will act almost like an acid and will not only remove the paint, but it will start to break down the figure's surface with prolonged contact and exposure.
When I use Acetone, I only use a Q-Tip to apply it to the affected area, and then I use a pin or an X-Acto blade to gently scrape away the softening glue.
For removing paint, I simply dab away the paint with the Q-Tip. Never rub because that will push the acetone into the "skin" of the figure and eat away at the soft PVC. It does seem like a long and tedious process, and it is...but it is worth it for top quality finish and reduce the chance of permanent damage to the figure.
It looks pretty gross...stretching it off the various parts.
After removing the paint and glue from the pieces, I submerged the pieces into a soap water bath. For this jar, I used Lemon Scented dish soap, about 2 tablespoons in warm water, and stirred with a spoon so that bubbles would not form. The pieces then settled and soaked for about an hour to neutralize and remove any acetone. I rinsed them with warm water afterwards.
After the pieces dried, I started painting the pieces, based on the Pawniard official artwork:
I started with the body. I put the body on toothpick "stilts" while clamped by a Binder Clip and also put toothpicks in the arm sockets to keep paint from filling them as I worked. I used a Gunmetal colored paint for the body.
The other parts, the limbs and blades, were also placed in makeshift clamps with flat toothpicks, and Binder Clips, but I forgot to take pictures. ^^;;
By using the toothpicks and Binder Clips, it helps to create a stable clamp that I can use to paint the pieces with great precision. There is also a small "crack" in the desk segments where I am working, and putting the Binder Clip's steel handles into that crack, and the figures are secure to stand and dry without tipping over.
After the body was fully painted, I then moved on to painting the face piece. I started with the black portion to be the outline. Then the Yellow for the inner eye.
After the initial eye painting was done, I added a light silver paint for the "face plate" of the Pawniard, and to the "axe" head blade.
I also used a metallic white paint for the blade's edge and also used the same metallic white on the toes and hand "blades" on the arms...forgot to take pictures of those too. Sorry. ^^;;
And I added pupils to the eyes after the paint dried on the face piece. I then started to re-assemble the Pawniard and instead of Super Glue, I use this product called "Mod Podge Three-Dimensional Magic". It is generally used to make jewelry, or beveled textures to scrap book projects. It also acts as a great, clear drying sealant for soft plastic toys and figures. It does take about 3-hours to completely dry and seal, but the results are best for these kinds of figures. Super Glue can actually damage plastics and cause marring on the surface, and distort paint.
I already had the face sealed on with the Mod Podge in this image. Pawniard looks nervous. ^^ After each part has been attached and sealed, I then painted a finishing coat to harden and permanently seal the figure and the paint completely. I like using the Tamiya X-22 acrylic finish.
Keep in mind, when using clear coat finishes, you need to work in a warm dry space so that it can dry evenly, and only apply coats as directed on the jars. Having circulating fans can also help with even drying of finish coats. If not, the finish will not dry evenly, and can be sticky/tacky, and soft to the touch, leaving fingerprints on the finish, or allowing dust or hair to coat the outside of the figure, ruining all of your work. Patience is key when working with these Clear Coats, and the end results are worth the wait and work.
I think it turned out very nicely! Could almost pass as an official figure, I think! Maybe I'm giving myself too much credit, but I do take pride in my work as an artist. :) Generally speaking, this deconstruction, repaint, and reconstruction took about a full 7-day week.
If there are others interested in the repair or reconstruction of their old figures, or fake figures that they find, feel free to ask any questions, or use my reconstruction posts as a reference for your own projects! I hope to provide more posts to show all kinds of things you can do to repair, or even customize figures to your own desires!
I will post more soon!