3 June 2011

Blackmane's Thoughts: Metal Vs Finecast

Hi all

Today I thought I'd talk a bit about GW's new Finecast and do a bit of a comparrison between Finecast and metal. Now I know there's been a lot of talk about this already but I thought a bit of a comparrison between the metal and finecast versions of a model could be interesting.

So the models I have chosen to compare are the Incubi. I got hold of a box of the new Finecast versions on Saturday and later the same day went back to the shop and bought one of the old metal boxes of Incubi. Now one of the reasons for this is I could have a full 10 man squad without having to buy another Finecast box and therefore save myself some money. It was then I decided to have a go at a comparrison.

So up first I want to talk about the detail. As far as I can tell GW have made this a big selling point with this fact constantly repeated.

Personally I'm not sure the difference is as great as GW has been making out. While I agree the little details are sharper, I don't think it makes a lot of difference to the other area's of the model. For example the armour plates on the Incubi are pretty much the same quality on both the Finecast and Metal. While the Finecast model has slightly sharper edges to it I personally don't think it really adds anything to the model. Maybe this will change when its painted but for now I don't think its anything major.

Next I want to talk about assembly. This really is where Finecast is way ahead of Metal. As I'm sure you all know assembling metal models can sometimes be a real pain, especially those little tiny pieces. Today I manged to assemble all 5 Finecast Incubi. They went together way better than any metal model does. A small amount of superglue, put the parts together and within a very short time its stuck. Now thats good. I can see that been really useful for those bigger models. Not having to hold the parts together for a long time while the glue dries will make them so much easier to assemble.
As you can see I didn't get the metal ones finished. This was just due to time rather than because they are difficult to assemble.

What I want to talk about next is a drawback of the Finecast models. Now I'm hoping that I just had some bad luck and picked a bad box. I say that because there are so many little bits and pieces that are miscast on my models. 4/5 of them have the armour on the back of their right arms missing, its just a mess of resin rather than the nice pointed armour the dark eldar have. The cloth wrapped around thier arms on 3/5 of them has barely any texture on them and the cloth that hanges from the waist has either holes or not cast quite right on 4/5 of them.  The holes for the arms to attach were all pretty much not deep enough with them only been 1 or 2mm into the surface and the points where the back vanes attach usually needed deepening on the left hand side. On the very first one I actually found a piece of rubber embedded in the collar of the Incubi's armour. There are other other little bits and pieces but I'm not going to go through them all. The metal versions though have very few defects. A few bent swords, which were easily straightened, and the odd rough patch that was easily removed with a knife or file. There's no detail missing like with the Finecast ones. So like I said I'm hoping this was just bad luck on my part as I would love to have some of the new Wracks and will no doubt get a box. But if they turn out like these I may give getting more than that a miss.

On to the cost. The metal box was £18.50 and the new Finecast box £23. Thats £4.50 more. Are they worth the increased price? I'm not sure they are. Sure they're easier to work with, lighter, better fine details, etc but they are same models. There's nothing new. Options for a Klaivex would have been great or maybe make it a box of 10 for £25-£28. That would have made it worth it. But for a box containing no new pieces, just the same models in a new material, I don't think it is.

So my final comments. While I was hesitant about the switch to Finecast I have to admit I think its a step in the right direction for GW. While I like the metal models, probably one of the few people who does, I think the new Finecast stuff will really open possibilities in the future in terms of what GW will be able to put out there. I just hope that the overall quality of these new models is better than the ones I got as it would be a shame if the amount of miscasting I got on mine is common place. Hopefully it is just teething problems with the new material that will be improved as time goes on.

Well thats my thoughts on Finecast. Please feel free to tell me what you think in the comments and let me know if you've found lots of little faults as I did as I'm curious to to if its a common problem or just unluckiness on my part.

As always thanks for reading.

Blackmane

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