In defence of ‘restic’

//In defence of ‘restic’

A short post today as I just finished the first four of Mantic’s orx for my Deadzone Marauder faction. Whilst painting them it occurred to me what a bad rep resin-plastic seems to get, quite a bit of it unfairly in my opinion. So this week I have thrown together a video case for the defence standing up for the poor maligned material. Will everyone agree with me? Almost certainly not, but I still felt it worth attempting to debunk a few myths anyway based on my own experience.

Regardless whether you agree of not about the material, the first group is done so I shall be prepping at least one of the Marauder exo-suits to add to this mob. With a fistful of Plague faction and some terrain already complete I feel an intro game coming on.

Update: Since posting this originally, Major Gilbear added a comment regarding cleaning the Mantic resins using a soft brass wire brush. I’ve since tried this myself and thank Gilbear sincerely for mentioning it because it does work a treat. For the more significant mold lines I still use a sharp blade as I mentioned in the video, however I have now started using a brass brush in conjunction to clean up the rest of the miniature as suggested, to great results. I’ll discuss that a bit more when I post the painted updates for the Rebel faction, which is due up in August. Many thanks Gilbear for that, great tip!

Until next time.


By |2017-02-10T11:36:57+00:00July 3rd, 2014|Categories: Video|Tags: , |8 Comments


  1. Allan July 3, 2014 at 9:05 pm - Reply

    Great video Carl. Have to agree with your comments on the Restics. Keep up the great brushwork!



  2. Major_Gilbear July 11, 2014 at 5:57 pm - Reply

    Good video Carl, and I mostly agree with your assessments too.

    I do think though that it’s not only hobbyists who need to “learn” the material more, but also the game companies that choose to use this material. I understand that Mantic have varied the exact chemical mix of their Restic over different products, and the material used in DZ is far better than the similar material used in DB or even Studio McVey’s SW. I also think that the detail captured in the DZ models is better than some of Mantic’s other Restic offerings.

    In terms of cleaning up the models, I find that slicing/paring away with a sharp knife is just asking for trouble, and I don’t think it gives a great finish either.

    Instead, what I and others on the Mantic forums discovered was that you are in fact better off filing the Restic. Yes, filing does shred the surface, but it also removes the mould lines much better and more evenly. The secret is to use a smallish brass wire brush (these are sold for cleaning spark plugs and such online for something like a £1 a brush with shipping included) and to scrub away at the filed areas quite firmly. This does *not* damage the model or the detail *at all*, and returns the filed surface to a nice polished finish that is very smooth and clean.

    Learning the brass brush trick for Restic was an epiphany for me, and for small areas of light flash that are hard to reach with a file, a quick scrape with a knife point and a good scrub with the brush afterwards gets the job done nicely too.

    Maybe give it a go for yourself and let us know how you get on? ;0)

    • Carl Woodrow July 11, 2014 at 8:52 pm - Reply

      Thanks Mate, you make two pretty important points actually. The trouble with doing this kind of video is of course you over-generalise for the sake of brevity and when I say don’t file, yeah your right there are of course exceptions. I actually have found emery boards to be pretty effective, the kinds you use (or rather the good lady uses *cough*) for nail filing. Best not to use hers though, trust me on that.

      The brass brush is a great tip, have never tried it but I will now. I agree, using a sharp blade is not the best option, but it is a better option than standard metal files when used carefully. I’ve had some good results using one, but that said the risks of shaving too much or ‘nicking’ the plastic is a significant risk. Will have to try the brass brush method you suggest as it does sound effective.

      I also agree a lot of what is good and bad comes from the source and the characteristics of the plastic they use. Games Workshop’s much maligned ‘Finecaset’ is another good example. Technically it is also a plastic resin and although almost certainly a different chemical mix to PVC, which I am sure the Studio McVey SW Kickstarter were and ‘probably’ the Mantic ones too still has it’s pros and cons.

      The motivation behind the video was more around what I felt was a perceived over-generalisation that the kind of resin plastic colloquially referred to as ‘restic’ automatically meant cheap or poor quality. I just felt that wasn’t true in all cases and just like there are badly manufactured urethane or metal miniatures there are equally decent ‘restic’ ones.

      Your counter-point about the filing is a really useful tip as well, thanks for that and appreciate you taking the time to make it, I’ll give it a go on the next batch. No shortage of them 🙂

  3. ouykcuf August 24, 2014 at 8:39 am - Reply

    Sorry I have to disagree with about 90 percent of what you say
    Restic also in my opinion makes brig colors appear dull also give the whole model a dull look.
    Its a pain I the are to glue ,
    I could go on and on about but it I’d have to make a video .
    Overall it feels cheap,lacks hard detail,pain to clean mold lines,I prefer spending time painting more than cleaning,very very limited,
    Ask yourself why starters kick starters use it cause its cheap in every sense of the word!!
    You disagree? Then ask yourself why GW never use it there’s your answer.

    • Carl Woodrow August 24, 2014 at 11:57 am - Reply

      Thanks for taking the time to reply. When I did that video, it’s purpose was to take an objective look at the material and debunk what I see as a number of myths about it, some of which you raised above. Regarding it feeling cheap, lacking hard detail and being a pain to clean mold line wise, I agree. If you are used to styrene plastic kits cheaper resin plastic is always going to feel inferior and yes, it does require a little more involvement in preparation for painting than styrene does. Clearly a lot of people (including yourself) dislike it and I don’t dispute that; the purpose of that video wasn’t to try and make you like Restic, but to demonstrate it can be prepared and painted just as effectively as metal or styrene. It also has a number of other properties that are beneficial as well, namely it’s resilience to handling, ease of conversion and that it ‘is’ cheaper to manufacture than styrene.

      You answered your own question when you asked “why do starter Kickstarters use it?”. Yes, it’s because it is cheaper to manufacture which I said in the video. Most of those games would not exist if they could only produce the miniatures in styrene; the cost of tooling would make those games prohibitively expensive to produce. Games Workshop don’t use it because they don’t have to; they have the capital to invest into styrene plastic tooling and a customer base that generates a return on that investment. The miniatures they know they won’t get an economy of scale return on, they produce in their own version of resin plastic, namely ‘Finecast’. Some would argue that it, like Restic has it’s own issues as well. However, I’m just trying to stick with the facts here.

      Whether you like Restic or not is entirely subjective and I can’t tell you one way or the other how to feel about it, that is of course your choice. I don’t personally like it either, however I accept it for what it is as a necessary material if small creators like Mantic for example are to be able to release the volume of miniatures and games they do at the price they can retail them to us, the gamer at. As such I look at how to extract the best from what I paid for.

      Two points you raise however I fundamentally dispute. You say it’s a pain to glue. I don’t really see how restic is any harder to glue than urethane resin or white metal? If anything I find it glues much better as the grip is near instant and the flexible nature of the plastic creates a very strong bond. I’m assuming you are using a contact glue (cyanoacrylate) and not a poly cement like you would with styrene plastic? The latter won’t work with Restic, it’s chemically different. Poly cement works by literally melting the interface between styrene parts and welding them together.

      You also say it makes bright colours appear dull? I’m sorry, but that is simply not true. The intensity and luminosity of paint has nothing to do with the material the miniature is made of. Those are all properties of the paint, not the model. What will make a difference to the brightness is the colour of primer you prime it in. Miniatures primed in black will reflect less than those primed in white and that will impact the intensity of the colours you paint on. All of the miniatures shown in the video were primed in a neutral grey with a Tamiya Fine Surface primer for reference.


      • almec August 24, 2014 at 4:57 pm - Reply

        Sorry Carl,,re reading what I wrote the day after I feel I was a ad harsh,,,
        Some points you raised are certainly valid and unbiased towards restic.
        I am a painter not a gamer,I guess clearly I find normal plastic my number one materiel.
        The times I have used restic mainly Mantic I have just always encountered problem after problem with the stuff and usually spend no end of time on preparation more than actual painting.
        My original comments was just after I made a build using restic then looked on web to find out what other ppl thought o the stuff,,clearly I was still in frustrated mood lol after building.
        That’s what frustrates me in that I see nice models that could be far better if only they used better materials but like you and I guess me have said is that starters can start by first keeping cost down etc so its OK for getting out there to begin with and enabling it more cheaply accessible for everyone and price wise and for what you get army wise.
        I have found that I small brass wire brush the kind you would clean suede shoes with does wonders even going restic a smoother finish helps,glue wise I use super glue but I have to hold longer than usual which is a pain for me when its a poseable position, maybe I should try another glue?
        The last thing I’d want to do is deter anyone but I would say use it,try it and maybe you will love it or hate it,at least try it once at least.
        Personally I shall avoid it in the future.
        Probably the only thing I do love about it is he fact that heating it with hairdryer or water is excellent for creating your own pose or positioning rather than hack n slash.
        To be fair Carl you made a good review and sorry for my original ignorance in being argumentive in my views and not acknowledging the bigger picture.
        By the way Carl really like your painting and style
        All the best ;–))

        • Carl Woodrow August 24, 2014 at 11:34 pm - Reply

          Hey, no worries, I often feel just as frustrated with it as well. The brass wire brush really is a top tip, I only recently discovered that myself. It’s not a miracle cure but it does help a lot with cleaning up the excess mold flash.
          If you want super glue to react faster you can get accelerator sprays. Zip Kicker is a good one. A word of caution though, it’s a pretty toxic product chemical wise so if you use one seriously keep it away from kids or pets.

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