|These eBay figures are much nicer than their basing. My|
own strategy is to make the basing better than the figures!
If the basing is completely inappropriate (e.g. multiple figures on rectangular bases) it has to go. OK, I know you can play these games with multiple-based figures and record the casualties, but it’s not my preference.
Even if figures are based singly, it’s probably best to rebase them in order to achieve uniformity in an army put together from different sources. However, it’s a shame to destroy nicely decorated bases and sometimes quite difficult to do so without running the risk of damaging the figures.
My latest acquisition were some ACW figures - painted Federals and unpainted Confederates (which I will probably sell on). The figures had been stuck onto MDF, then into plastic movement trays and finally covered with a thick carpet of flocking material which may have been applied with a hot glue gun and was still extremely gooey.
I prized the MDF out of the movement trays and then stood the figures in warm water to weaken the MDF. Then I used a scalpel to cut and scrape away the MDF and flock. Finally I used a cotton-bud dipped in Isopropanol to rub off some of the remaining flock and glue. In some cases, however, the Isopropanol just made everything more sticky, so I returned to the hot water treatment which seemed to shrink, harden and loosen the glue rather than spreading it about.
I'm hoping that repeated immersion in hot water isn't going to cause the plastic to degenerate during my lifetime, but I don't have a lot of choice. The figures have been coated with Army Painter Quickshade or similar. This is giving them good protection, and there is no visible damage to the paintwork.
I don’t have to achieve 100% removal of the offending glue and flock as the new bases are going to be textured and reflocked anyway, but it’s good to get the old flock off the figures’ ankles.