In the TGG Kickstarter, we have 3 different types of material: white metal, hand-poured resin, and spin-cast resin.
You all know about white metal, a standard in the industry.
We work with what is probably the best foundry on the market, praised by many as being not only the best in terms of quality, but also one of the most reliable supplier in the industry. You can expect very little flash, great details, and consistency of quality over time.
Hand-poured resin is the traditional material preferred by high-level painters, collectors, and very demanding hobbyists. Hand-poured resin is a very slow and delicate process in which every step is completely hand-made. Moulds have a very short lifespan and in most cases, after 30 casts, a replacement mould has to be made, again from scratch. That's the reason why it is very hard to produce large quantities of hand-poured resin models. In the TGG Kickstarter, hand-poured resin Heroines were only available for pledgers of the limited quantity Connoisseur Box or Add-on which has been completely sold out already.
Spin-cast resin is a process that combines the machinery used for metal casting with a special resin material. These two elements allow for the rapid manufacturing of very large quantities of resin miniatures with great results and great quality.
So, back to the question: how to choose between metal and resin?
THE CRISPNESS OF DETAILS
But before we get into the pros and cons of metal vs resin, you'll want to read what follows regarding the crispness of details.
Resin-lover will often say that miniatures that are cast in resin have a higher level of detail than metal. This can be somewhat true because it is easier to get a very crisp and clean cast in resin, but it requires more skill and experience to achieve the same results in metal. Also, if you compare a metal cast and a resin cast side-by-side, the resin always cast 'looks' better, but this is due to the optical properties of the two materials. On metal, light gets reflected and distorted and, most times, there is also some level of oxidation on the surface of the metal that creates tiny spots and stains.
All of this taken together make the details of the metal casts less readable and sometimes a bit blurry to the eye.
On the contrary, resin has a very even finish and the light is slightly absorbed by the material, given it a smooth aspect, a clean look. Because of that, details appearsharper.
In other words, to the naked eye, a metal miniature with no base coat will always 'appear' less detailed than a resin one.
However, if you work with a great metal caster like the one we are blessed to work with, the level of details of our metal casts is actually as crisp as a resin cast.
We tested it to make sure: we took the same mini, one in resin and one in metal. Once both minis were primed, there was no difference between them. Aside from their weight, they were indistinguishable. Hard to believe, but true.
So, in the end, based on our experience and tests, we sincerely believe that the level of detail is not really a factor in determining if you should get a Toughest Girls of the Galaxy Heroine in metal or resin. Of course everyone has his preference and this is probably what should guide you. However, if you are not yet sure what to get, here is some more pertinent information to help you choose what suits you best.
SO, BACK TO THE QUESTION: HOW TO CHOOSE BETWEEN METAL AND RESIN?
First, an important reminder: please remember that only the Heroines are available in metal or spin-cast resin (both materials are at the same price). Troops, Supports, Vehicles and Freebies are only available in spin-cast resin. So we have written the following Pros and Cons with that in mind.
Spin-cast Resin Pros:
• Very easy to glue (the glue creates a strong bond between the parts)
• Easy to convert
• Better-looking when unpainted
Spin-Cast Resin Cons:
• Requires more preparation: they need to be washed in warm soapy water then rinsed before gluing and painting, they have more gates and vents that need to be removed, occasional random tiny bubbles need to be taken care of (most of the time, a small drop of paint or superglue will suffice to fill them, although very rarely, green stuff will be required), occasionally, some parts may be slightly bent and contrary to metal, they need to be warmed up in hot water before being repositioned
• Lightweight: as much as lightweight may be good for transport, the minis can be more easily knocked over on the gaming table.
• Requires very little preparation: no washing, very minimal cleaning of flash
• Heavyweight: won't be easily knocked off on the gaming table
• Un-gluing: You can easily take apart a miniature that you assembled previously to remodel it or replace some parts
• Paint can be stripped very easily, which is way much harder to do with resin
• Can be harder to glue and may occasionally need pinning from stronger bond between parts
• Harder to convert
See the original content on the Update #86 of our Toughest Girls of the Galaxy Kickstarter