Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Who's ride is this?

In amongst the myriad tasks under way this last month, I have been trying to finish off the riders for the various big critters.  This time around, it is the snowy owl rider from CMON.

I have some top views that I will post tomorrow that show some of the designs that I painted on the rider.  There were some other elements I thought of adding, but with so much going on with the bird, the base, etc., I kept it more simplified

This was my favorite rider of all the Big Birds, so I guess that is why I finished it first.

Once these birds are finished, I will be doing another auction round next week.  Since it looks like shipping will be at least twice the cost of the original plans now that the Post Office raised fees dramatically, extra funds will be needed there.

There is Joy in Wappelville!!

Well, I realize that this is not exactly miniatures, but for anyone who ever has to ship them somewhere, this is a big deal!
Last week, we purchased a scale from the Post Office.  That darn thing is super sensitive.  Anyway, we needed it to be able to do all of the shipping paperwork in advance, on-line... or so we were told.

Getting information on this was a tad more difficult that mapping the Human Genome, with all sorts of twists and turns along the way.

Of course, when we brought it home, the Uglies wanted to weigh themselves...

This scale goes up to 70 lbs, and cost $40.

Here is what we were really trying to avoid.  Not long ago, shipping a package out of the US was relatively simple.  You filled out a small customs form, wrote the address on the box, answered a stock question or two and that was it.

It is massively different now!  If you want to do that same task these days, you have to wait for the exasperated P.O. clerk to type in all of this info, one keystroke at a time.  It can take 15 minutes just to ship one package.  We were stuck for almost a half hour the first time we shipped a few small packages.

We were told that you "Can do it all online", and save everyone this colossal hassle.  Well, it is a little (lot) more complex than that.  You must have a scale, an online account, and read all the various restrictions first.  It took a second trip to another post office to find this out, and then a third to buy the scale.

You can use paypal or a credit card to pay your shipping online, after you have spent a lot of time setting up the account, etc.  Filling out the forms online can be maddening, since there are some very cryptic questions.

Once you enter everything and send payment, you have to print out a form like this.  It is different for domestic vs international.  The one thing in common is that you box must be big enough to accommodate this lable!  You cannot resize it in any way, and they say not to wrap it around the edge of the box.

I guess I have to get self stick labels now, because they don't want you to tape over the bar codes (there are none in this sample print).

As it turns out, you can drop off these pre-paid and printed packages at satellite offices where they accept packages.  this could save dozens of hours when the videos are shipped, and not just for the kickstarter.

Lessons learned, to say the least.  I am sure that there are other surprises in store as well...

He's the Boss

I finally got around to painting the Bosspole for Gormakk the Orc Warmaster from Raging Heroes.

He was a blast to paint, with loads of options.  You can make him Sci-fi like this, or as a Fantasy character.  I have one of those as well, so I will be posting pics of him at some point!

He is a very cool kit, so go check him out!