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Member Since 22 Jul 2007
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Topics I've Started

Banshee's Guide to Painting: Part 2

11 May 2012 - 10:37 PM

This will be the second part of my painting tutorial where I will show you a few basic things like filling holes, marbling paint, and using bedliner paint. I suggest that before you read this, you familiarize yourself with what I said in Part: 1so I don't have to repeat anything that was said before about prep-work and taping. Once you've done that, we'll move right into body work.

Step 1: Body Work

In this segment, my test subject will be an overhauled AT3K. This particular AT3k has had its pump replaced with a Magstrike Pump, and I no longer use the slots on the sides where the shotgun style pump used to be. How tacky does it look with these huge gaping holes in the side that do nothing? Let cover them up!

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Before we start filling the hole, we need to seal it off from the backside so the filler can stick to something. There are several ways to do this, but I've done this to at least half a dozen AT3K's, and this is how I do it. I take two shish kabob skewers, one for each side.

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Then I measure them to the length on the inner channel and break them to the right length. You can this with your hands. Then place them into the channel and glue them in place with hot glue. The picture is pretty explanatory:

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Next you're going to want to fill the outer side with a thin layer of hot glue. You want to make sure that you keep the glue below the edge of the gun. This step isn't completely necessary, but we will be using Bondo later, and the thinner the layers of Bondo you can use, the better. This part takes up some of that room.

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This is what we're going to need for this part, a sanding block, a putty knife, and Bondo Glazing Spot Putty. For those of you who have never used Bondo because they only sell it in huge containers at high prices, and you have to mix it all together to use it, and itís just so overwhelming for such a small project like a Nerf gun, this is for you! Spot putty is pre-mixed, ready to use Bondo in a tube! Itís as easy to use as tooth paste. You can even buy it at Wal-mart, itís like $4 in the automotive section.

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Bondo is something that takes a little practice to get good at using, and a lot of patience. But some tips when using it, the thinner layers you can use, the better. Even a millimeter thin layer will form cracks as it dries. If it does, thatís not a big deal, you can put another layer over it, but thicker layers also take an exponentially longer time to dry. A paper thin layer may take 10 minutes, but a 2 paper thick layer could take an hour. But just remember, one or two layers will NEVER be enough. By the end, I believe I ended up doing about 8 layers on each side with sanding in between each one. Bondo isnít an easy thing to work with, but itís the best way to get good results.

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After you smear the first layer in, let it dry completely. DO NOT rush this part or you could ruin everything youíve done. Youíll know its dry when all the dark spots are gone and itís a flat redish orange color. Then take your sanding block and sand it smooth and continue applying layers until youíre satisfied. Generally speaking, the more time you put into it, the better it will look.

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McMaster-Carr PETG Tubing

03 May 2012 - 05:29 PM

I really hate having to post a new thread to ask this, but I've messaged a few people, did a search, did a google search, and still found nothing. Anyways, I need to order some PETG, and the place I used to get it from no longer sells it, and I hear a lot of people talking about McMaster's PETG. The problem is that McMasters wont tell me what the shipping is going to cost until I've already payed for it. I hate when sites do that and I've been screwed on it way to many times to do it again. So have any of you ordered PETG from McMasters in 4 foot sections? How much did it cost for shipping? I'm thinking at minimum 10 tubes, so 40 feet of it.

Supermaxx 500 Leak

01 April 2012 - 03:23 PM

I've been messing with this one for a few weeks now and I'm stumped. I bought it at a thrift store, and I was pretty thrilled about it, but later I found that it doesn't hold pressure. You pump it up and it leaks right out of the barrel end of the tank. I opened it up and put it under water, and it leaks from the front of the tank and nowhere else. The check valve is fine, the hole for the firing pin is fine, its just the rubber seal in the tank that leaks. I was really disappointed because the only way to get to the seal was to cut the barrel off. And that means the gun will never be in original condition which is what I wanted, but I'd rather have a working modded gun than a broken stock gun, so I cut the barrel off.

Once I could get to the seal, I used a little oil on it, that didn't do anything. So then I put a little lithium grease on it. That helped a tiny bit, but it still wont hold pressure. Its not an instant leak, I'd say it takes about a second to leak out 2 pumps. When I push the firing pin into the tank and pump it, it makes no difference, so I don't think a stronger spring would fix it. It seems that higher pressure seems to help seal it, so plugging the pump might work, but not only is the pump glued in and I can't get it out, but I hear that plugging the pump on a SM500 can blow the tank, so I really don't know what to do. I would like to be able to soften the glue on the tank and open it up. I don't want to cut it because I've never been able to successfully glue tanks back together, and since this tank is attached to the pump as one big piece, I'm not even going to try.

I've done everything I know how to do to fix this thing, and I haven't gotten very far. Does anyone have any ideas on what I could do?

Banshee's Guide to Painting: Part 1

24 March 2012 - 09:58 PM

So over the past few mod write-ups that I've done, I've been getting numerous PM's and comments about people wanting to learn how to do some of the paint jobs that I've done. So I'm going to write a detailed guide for people of any experience level. So if you know a thing or two about painting, don't be insulted by how dumbed down this tutorial will be, its meant for beginners. Most of us could've already figured out how to do simple paint jobs like this, but I plan on doing multiple painting tutorials in the future. I plan to cover everything from simple two-tone to wood-graining and marbling. I've painted cars, trucks, guitars, motorcycles, ATV's, etc. and I'm going to try and explain this in the simplest, most cost effective way I can.

The first thing you need to do is disassemble the gun. I've seen a ton of paint jobs done from various people where they painted the gun while it was still together. This is a huge NO-NO. The paint can jam up things like slides, triggers, and other moving parts, not to mention is just looks terrible when you're done! ALWAYS take apart your guns before painting them. If you're too inexperienced to remove every part from your gun and get it put back together right, consider painting something simpler.

Step 1: TAPING

Taping is generally the first step to painting if you don't have any kind of serious prep work to be done. Prep work would go first, which includes sanding, priming, body filling, etc. and we might get into that on another day. But in this tutorial, we're using some of the original colors from the factory on our test subject. Now the more perceptive of you may have noticed, our test subject is a Nite Finder.

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We want to keep the original handle, light, and logo colors from the factory. I do this to most of my Nite Finders to keep a more "stock" type of look, because I'm only changing the yellow color of the gun. That way it looks like it could've come from the factory that way. It's just a personal preference and its also the simplest and quickest way to paint most Nerf guns.

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Now go ahead and begin taping off your gun. I taped off the black and grey areas. The best tape I've found for painting is Scotch 3M blue painters tape. There are a few types of 3M painters tape, the light blue is the best. The darker blue "Safe-Release" tape is absolute crap, DON'T use it. I haven't had any luck with frog tape either because both of them have very little "stick" to them and they peel up after a few minutes. Frog Tape is great for cars and such, but for small items with tight curves, you're going to want a stronger stick tape.

When taping, put tape on the area you want to cover and go over the edges of the area. Then once all the tape is covering your area, go over it with a hobby knife and trim the tape off the areas you want to paint. This takes a little practice, and if you use a sharp blade, you don't need very much pressure, so don't dig into your gun with the knife.

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For taping the logo, you're going to want to use a tape that is flexible. Painters tape is not flexible at all, so I use electrical tape. E-Tape makes a great painters tape, it sticks well, comes off clean, and its flexible, which makes it great for certain applications. However its not as cheap and not as wide as painters tape, so I don't suggest you use it for everything.

Before we move on to the next step, you need to take some rubbing alcohol or wax remover to the surface of your gun and make sure that you get all the dust and finger oils off. Acetone is generally not a good idea because it eats the plastic away. It makes for a good painting surface though, but I don't advise using it unless you really know what you're doing. If you have sticker residue or some other kind of adhesive that alcohol wont take off, I use a chemical called "Xylene". You can get it at paint shops, and maybe your local hardware store if you're lucky. It takes almost any adhesive off without hurting the surface underneath and works MUCH better than Goo-Gone in just about every situation. I use it for everything, its a must-have for any serious painter. (But I will warn you, it takes most of the Nerf ink off the guns, like the grey and black area's of the Nite Finder.)

A lot of people feel a primer, sanding, or both is necessary for the paint to adhere. This is an option, but as far as spray paint goes, some primers just don't work. Krylon primer is basically useless. It doesn't stick to any surface any better than the actual paint itself, and it leaves a much worse texture behind than the paint would which requires sanding. If you think you need a primer, shell out the extra cash for some more expensive primer like Duplicolor or some automotive primer. Plastic primer works too, but I've had plastic primer that peeled off in sheets once it was dry. I just skip the confusion and go straight to painting. If you have a good clean surface and you paint it right, the paint should stick just fine. Besides, most of the durability comes from the clear coat.


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For this demonstration, we're using a metallic silver base coat, a candy color coat, and a clear top coat. This is a common procedure used my paint profession all over. The base coat can be silver or white, as long as its metallic. Try experimenting with both colors to get your desired result, but for this we're using silver. I'm using Rustoleum metallic Silver as opposed to Krylon or Duplicolor because it has a much larger metal flake in the paint which makes the gun really pop in the sunlight. Use the same metallic I did. Rustoleum sells a few kinds of metallic paint including a "chrome" paint, and the others are garbage, don't use them.

When you paint, I find the best way is to hold the part in your hand. Wear a glove or put your arm in a trash bag so you don't paint yourself. Lying the part on a flat surface makes it difficult to see all the parts of the gun while you paint it, so I advise holding it like so:

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Now proceed to the painting. Start painting in the hardest to reach places to avoid paint runs. I usually put an extremely light coat on first, almost impossible to see. Its more of an overspray than a coat. This acts sort of like a primer and helps the next coat stick a little better. If you go in for a thick coat right from the beginning, it can potentially bead, and the metal flakes can sometime cluster and look really bad. After about 5 coats, it should look like this:

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Now the color comes from the candy coat. Candy is a transparent paint that adds color to whatever is underneath it. In this case, it's a silver base coat, and we're using a purple candy, so it will turn into a metallic purple. Which I don't know if any of you have every looked at your local Home Depot, but they don't exactly have metallic purple in spray cans (at least not where I live) so this is a great way to get the color you want. There are a few kinds of candy paints that I've used. The best is the kind you use in an airbrush, but we're using rattle can's, so your easiest to find options will be Krylon X-Metals, and Duplicolor Metalcast. The Metalcast is a much better candy. Its bright, goes on very smooth and even, strong as nails, and takes clear coat nicely. The X-metals is pretty crappy. It goes on thicker and its hard to get an even coverage. But what really gets me, is that the clear coat I use sucks the candy coat into it which reveals the base coat in places, so you have to be careful to avoid it. Make sure the candy is dry first if you use X-Metals. But it you use the Metalcast, you can recoat and clear coat at any time you want. But I will say this, the Metalcast costs twice as much. It's about $10 a can found at most auto-parts stores.

But regardless, the X-metals that I used turned out quite nice:

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The clear I used is Deft. It's meant for furniture, but I find that it sticks really well to just about everything. Its about $5-$6 a can at Home Depot and it goes a really long ways. I used to use Kyrlon Crystal Clear which is about $3, but it never dries as hard as Deft, doesn't go on as smooth, and it's nowhere near as shiny. I recommend that you give Deft a try if your other clear coats have let you down.

The process that I use to get such a high level of shine is what I call "flooding". Which is just as it sounds, you flood the gun with so much clear so fast that it eliminates the orange peel texture that leads to a dull surface. Now you can't do flooding with all kinds of clear. Krylon Crystal Clear is thick and it runs easily, and it doesn't spray out smooth at all. Deft comes out in a very fine mist, its thinner than Krylon, and you can get a very thick coat of it on without it running. This takes some practice and your first few tries will probably have some runs in it.

This picture shows one half with clear coat, which is on the left, and the other half without clear coat on the right. So can see that added benefits of a clear coat cosmetically, aside from the fact that it makes your paint much more durable. I tried to get a good picture of the difference but the sun was behind my fence so I didn't have much light anymore.

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Now you can let it dry for a day or so and put it back together! Mine turned out pretty good overall. I've done better, and shinier. The shine can't be properly be represented in a photo, I promise you it's much more impressive in person, but none the less, thats how you do a candy coat paint job.

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Does anyone have any questions?

Defender T3 Overhaul

17 March 2012 - 09:03 PM


It's been a while since I posted any legit writeup, but you know me, I don't like to post pointless junk, I like to post badass new modifications!

So I found this little beast at a Goodwill for $2. It was missing the arrow part of the gun, which is the best part, so I was kind of bummed. But I've been wanting one of these for a long time for one reason that a lot of people seem to have overlooked on this gun. Its very large and cylindrical shaped where the plunger tube is. Do you know what that means? It means it can hold a MUCH larger plungertube than the stock one, all you have to do is make it fit.

So lets start with the gun...

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Open it up, and its stupid simple inside. Much like the Nite Finder internals, though the plunger tube is a little bit smaller. The stock seal is better and the spring is stronger than a NF, so the stock ranges are better. And even with basic mods, it gets 70' ranges. But we're not going to accept 70' ranges, not in this write-up!

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We're gona put a darn tootin' Crossbow plungertube in this sucker!!! You heard me right! I got a spare plunger tube from a crossbow when I rebuilt the internals, and its a perfect fit inside the gun, all I have to do is grind out all the interior walls. If you don't have a xbow plungertube, as a doubt the vast majority of you will, you can use 1.25" PETG tubing, or one of those sink drain couplers that are commonly used as replacement plungertubes for xbow's. Either way, just make sure its 1.25" in diameter and about 7 inches long.

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Now look at the difference in plunger tube sizes! I measured the interior volume and the crossbow is 2.5X the size of the Defender plungertube!

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The first thing you need to do is grind down all the interior walls with your Dremel tool. (If you don't have a Dremel tool, you need to get one, or find a new hobby. Haha!) However, leave the very last one towards the end of the barrel. The plunger needs something to rest against.

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You're also going to need to grind down the ribs on the crossbow plunger. You're going to need to be a total boss with a Dremel tool for this, or you'll grind right through the tube. The plastic is thin, so be careful.

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Now it should fit in your gun like so! You're going to want to keep the tube towards the front of your gun.

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Now make your plunger rod. You should be able to figure this out for yourself because it will depend on what spring/s you use and what rod material you use. You can use the stock plunger rod, but I don't suspect you'll get results half as good as mine with the stock rod. Mine is made of 3/8" nylon. It has a 1.25" neoprene washer as a plunger head, which creates a 100% air seal. And I got TWO Ace #49 springs for power. Yeah... I got two of them... They reach full compression too. They completely bottom out by the time it catches for maximum power! It gives me a draw of nearly 6 inches which is almost the entire plunger tube!!!

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Now glue your couple of choice on the end of the plunger tube. I put a piece of CPVC in the end of the coupler to create a bit of a gap between the coupler and the end of the plungertube. I use this gap to hook the the plungertube onto that last wall at the end of the gun that we didn't grind down. That way the plunger tube wont slide back when you prime the gun.

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Now put it all back in and you're done! I would also replace the catch spring if I were you.

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And it should like like this...

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IF you're totally lame... You're going to want to make it look like this!!!

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That's right, candy apple red, and super high gloss clear coat! This thing was a royal pain in my ass to tape off. Getting tape into the vent looking parts was not easy, it took me 2 hours. But it was SO worth it... It turned out completely ridiculous! I'm going to have to do a whole writeup just for the painting process alone!

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The barrel is about 9" of CPVC. It could use a whole foot or more, but that's just unwieldy.

Now last but not least, I know you're all wondering about ranges. I can tell you right now, it outranges my Crossbow, overhauled AT3K, and my SM1500 that you see behind it. I was completely floored the first time I fired it. I used weighted streamline darts firing level shot, and it would repeatedly fire over 150 feet with stupid accuracy! Crossbow ranges in the size of a pistol. Throw a hopper on this bad bow and you're basically unstoppable...

A few sidenotes, this thing is pretty touch to cock. I have no issues, but some of you younger kids might. It also has a bit of a recoil. It tends to want to jump out of your hand when you fire it, so that takes a bit of getting use to. But it sounds amazing. It has that glorious *thump* sound you get from a high powered spring gun. This is probably my new favorite gun. I call it "The Offender"

Question's, comment's, jealousy?