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making plastic miniatures

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krone9
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Joined: 01/28/2017

is there a guide anywhere to the process, tips, costs etc of what is involved in this

somehow my simple little alternative game has now become utterly impossible without a few miniatures and I don't really know where to start!

any help on here?

gxnpt
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Joined: 12/22/2015
miniatures and plexiglass

I have a similar question myself..

In my case I am looking into 1 inch hexagonal tokens some of which have 2 sides - but since the second side is just looking at the first side from the bottom I wonder if the UV printing on clear plexiglass laser cut would work with the token flipped over without needing printing on the other side.

So far, this looks interesting
http://www.files.e-raptor.pl/catalogs_2016/Tokens_Markers_Pawns_2016_on_...
but I have no idea about prices etc.

Can anyone help with advice in this area?

krone9
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Joined: 01/28/2017
they look very cool I have a

they look very cool

I have a small workshop which does laser cutting - I will ask them to look into the printing side and get a quote.

(but only realistically in UK/EU - depending where you are this may be useless!)

Gabe
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Here's a couple 3d printing

Here's a couple 3d printing services: http://www.boardgamedesignlab.com/prototypes/#miniatures

ElKobold
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Very roughly:Expect a price

Very roughly:

Expect a price of +-600 for each model.

A mold holds +-6-7 human-sized 32mm models.
Each mold is +-6000.

That's without production cost.

That's for PVC.

Resin requires much cheaper molds but is considerably more expensive in production per unit.

I would advise against minis for a small game.

@Gabe
3D printing only works for prototypes.

I Will Never Gr...
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ElKobold wrote:Very

ElKobold wrote:
Very roughly:

Expect a price of ~600 for each model.

A mold holds ~6-7 human-sized 32mm models.
Each mold is ~6000.

That's without production cost.

That's for PVC.

Resin requires much cheaper molds but is considerably more expensive in production per unit.

I would advise against minis for a small game.

@Gabe
3D printing only works for prototypes.

That's pretty consistant with what I have found myself.

$500-750 USD for a 3d render/master sculpt (unless you can do it yourself)
$2500-$6000 for a mold, varying by how many pieces can be held in the mold and the quality of the mold/manufacturer

Then actually making the pieces is pennies after that, but you're also looking at making 5,000-10,000 runs of each mold.

Any manufacturer should be able to give you a price and minimum order quantity and there are numerous 3D modelers around who can vary in skill greatly.

A VERY expensive up front proposition.

ElKobold
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I Will Never Grow Up Gaming

I Will Never Grow Up Gaming wrote:

Then actually making the pieces is pennies after that, but you're also looking at making 5,000-10,000 runs of each mold.

Can't agree here.
Production cost is no "pennies" either.

Using standees will be by far cheaper even if we don't take molds and sculpting into account.

Especially if you, let's say, want to have them in different colors.

It also increases production time rather significantly.

Gabe
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ElKobold wrote: @Gabe 3D

ElKobold wrote:

@Gabe
3D printing only works for prototypes.

Oh. I thought that's what we were talking about...

krone9
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Joined: 01/28/2017
ElKobold wrote:Very

ElKobold wrote:
Very roughly:

Expect a price of +-600 for each model.

A mold holds +-6-7 human-sized 32mm models.
Each mold is +-6000.

That's without production cost.

That's for PVC.

Resin requires much cheaper molds but is considerably more expensive in production per unit.

I would advise against minis for a small game.

@Gabe
3D printing only works for prototypes.

thats about twice the price of what I've found. I'm looking at $300 per sculpt including sample and I'm pretty sure I can get a mould done for about $3k (if anything I'm looking to get it cheaper than that!)

Note I don't disagree with your other statements about whether you *should* go down this route, just the prices

ElKobold
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krone9 wrote:thats about

krone9 wrote:

thats about twice the price of what I've found. I'm looking at $300 per sculpt including sample and I'm pretty sure I can get a mould done for about $3k (if anything I'm looking to get it cheaper than that!)

If that's your first project, I would strongly advise you to not go with obscure Chinese factory just to get as low price as possible. There are soooo many things which can go wrong, and communication will be an issue almost guaranteed.
If you do go this route, make sure that there are no hidden costs in the quote.

krone9 wrote:

Note I don't disagree with your other statements about whether you *should* go down this route, just the prices

The price I`m giving you is based on my experience self-publishing the game with miniatures. It's on the upper end of the scale, since we were working with large proven manufacturer, to avoid additional risks.

That factory which you have in mind - do they produce the entire thing, or just the miniatures?

If you produce minis at one place and then have to ship to another for assembly, that will add to your cost and delivery time.

krone9
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Good adviceThe place I've

Good advice

The place I've been talking to is these guys: http://imagine3dminiatures.com/

I haven't used them yet. They only make the sculpt and 1 sample print.

I do however have a trusted supplier in China who I could get to make moulds and copies for me - been working with them for a year. No idea on cost for this specifically yet but I make a similar sized product in vaguely similar material so expecting similar cost. Mould would be about $2-3000 based on that.

I Will Never Gr...
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ElKobold wrote:I Will Never

ElKobold wrote:
I Will Never Grow Up Gaming wrote:

Then actually making the pieces is pennies after that, but you're also looking at making 5,000-10,000 runs of each mold.

Can't agree here.
Production cost is no "pennies" either.

Using standees will be by far cheaper even if we don't take molds and sculpting into account.

Especially if you, let's say, want to have them in different colors.

It also increases production time rather significantly.

What can't you agree on? The run quantities or the pricing?

My response was based entirely on personal experience.

By "pennies" for the actual production run, I am talking about approximately 10-12 cents per figure (again, personal experience), but that was on 15mm (and smaller) scale figures, so you get more per mold than you do 28-35mm figures. Price will vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, scale of the minis and size of run.

Standees are always cheaper, yes.

krone9
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I'd be expecting about 20-30

I'd be expecting about 20-30 cents per figure based on other experience (but not miniatures) - but with a MOQ of about 10,000

ElKobold
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I Will Never Grow Up Gaming

I Will Never Grow Up Gaming wrote:

What can't you agree on? The run quantities or the pricing?

Since we are not discussing any specific game I can't agree with a statement that production cost is pennies.
Depending on the game and the number of miniatures, production cost might be quite substantial.

I Will Never Gr...
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ElKobold wrote:I Will Never

ElKobold wrote:
I Will Never Grow Up Gaming wrote:

What can't you agree on? The run quantities or the pricing?

Since we are not discussing any specific game I can't agree with a statement that production cost is pennies.
Depending on the game and the number of miniatures, production cost might be quite substantial.

Which is why my answer was qualified with quantities. I failed to mention size of mini, but the point still remains; Plastic Injection Moulding is expensive upfront (in the thousands of dollars) and (relatively) pennies at the backend (10-12 cents per piece in my case, 20-30 cents in many other cases - compared to the upfront cost and the costs of 3d printing, this is pennies) but actual cost will vary from manufacturer to manufacturer and by quantity/size/quality/materials used.

krone9
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Joined: 01/28/2017
the other thing is though -

the other thing is though - the price of the mould (for me about $3k) could be multiple figures - wouldn't be "per figure" necessarily.

ian.curtis
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Joined: 12/27/2018
The same issue :D

I also had the same issue, but I've decided to produce locally, I didn't have any trusted moulder in China and frankly speaking I'm happy that I couldn't find any eventually. I have no idea how you can control the process from the other side of the globe. I choose these guys https://polymermedics.com mainly for the price and their ability to guide you even if you have no idea what should be done

apeloverage
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Joined: 08/01/2008
"somehow my simple little

"somehow my simple little alternative game has now become utterly impossible without a few miniatures..."

I can't see how it could be literally impossible without plastic miniatures. Why can't you use tokens or standees?

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