Ah, what a nuisance, I seem to be coming down with a cold, I got up with a sore throat and heavy head this morning, but it doesn't seem too fierce yet. I'll fill myself with drugs and soldier on.
Last night I started work on the model gladiator by assembling his legs, which for the most part was a fairly easy, trouble-free affair, just simple cutting trimming and gluing, the several pieces being held together with pegs or elastic bands. These were then put together. The figure, thus far looks rather odd, his loin cloth or whatever you may call it, makes the figure look as if he is wearing a nappy or incontinence pants!
However, when nearly done I encountered a problem with Mr Incontinence, with the padding that goes around the back of the figure's left leg. This should have fitted around the calf and butted up against the ornamental bronze greave in the shin. However, though the two parts married nicely at the bottom of the leg, at the top there was a gap of two to three millimetres. The problem was caused by the swell of the calf muscle. I had already glued the padded section into place, thinking that I could fill the gap, but I changed my mind an hour later and prised the piece off just before going to bed.
Today, after examining the model again, I decided that the best thing to do would be to pare the offending calf muscle back. I thought it would only be the matter of a moment, but it actually took a little more work than expected.
I first shaved it back with a knife; no fit, even sanding the padded edge back to get rid of last night's dried glue didn't help. I then gave the leg muscle a good going over with a file; still no joy, the muscle was still too big. So out came the big guns, I brought out my mini tool for some serious sanding. Safety first, I popped on my goggles and attacked the leg with a sanding tip, which improved the fit, but I finally discovered that the offending part was the very top of the calf where it swells out. To get rid of this, I swapped the sanding tip for a cutting or reaming tip. This is pretty aggressive and finally cut enough away, though it's best to do it a bit at a time, constantly checking and rechecking so as not to overdo it.
Finally, though, I got the fit I wanted and what little gap remained has disappeared since then, my having glued the part in place. When I fitted it, I made sure that the padded section looked like it was folding under the greave, leaving the latter sticking out slightly proud on either side.
Once the offending piece had been glued and allowed to dry, I then scraped and sanded back most of the seams and filled any gaps, the most notable being around the top of the padded section I had fixed in place and across the right foot where there was an obvious join where the toes had been stuck onto the rest of the foot. Apart from some general tidying up, that is the legs done.
After doing the filling I then cut the two halves of the torso from their sprues and glued them together. This went together without much trouble and I soon decided to attach it to the legs, holding it in place until it dried with a doubled elastic band. Now, a la Borat, the figure looks like he's wearing a 'mankini'.