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Dice, Dice, Baby (a thread about collecting, making, rolling)


Dr_Dave
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Oh man, quick question- how long does it take, and how much does it cost to make per dice? I know how much I spent on prototype dice, and I'd rather have given that to a forumite. Additionally, I get asked occasionally where people can get prototype dice in the UK from. Not that you're a business, but I'm amazed that it's something that can be done 'in house' to that level essentially.

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1 hour ago, And said:

Those are really cool. How do you emboss in the numbers? In fact - just how?

 

It depends on how involved you want the process to be. At its easiest, it is:

 

1) Buy some moulds on Amazon and some resin (and whatever you want to use to colour them)

2) Mix and pour the resin into the moulds.

3) Wait.

4) Remove and polish.

 

Inking the numbers is a case of painting over the numbers roughly, then wiping off the excess with your finger. Works well.

 

This will give you results, but not very satisfactory ones. The resin will likely cure with air bubbles, so you won't get perfectly clear dice, and you won't have much control over look and shape.

 

The full version is more like:

 

1) Design master dice in cad software.

2) 3d print.

3) Sand and polish to a high standard.

4) Use the masters with silicone to make your own moulds.

5) Repeat steps in the quick process but use a pressure pot to cure air bubbles.

 

Then take lots of Instagram photos! 😀

 

I'm out and about tonight but I'll post some process photos tomorrow if you're interested.

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Amazing dice - those marble and the red ones are lovely.

 

I love me some clicky-clacky rocks. This a crap photo of my current temp dice jar (till I can find something more decorative that I like).

 

IMG_20210225_182843.thumb.jpg.9b80e5bec951b0c674a89549bf7f4547.jpg

 

There's a load others, but they're just in storage in plastic bags at the moment.

 

Then I have my Elder Dice which satisfy my cosmic horror urges (this is an old pic, there's more now!)

 

box2.thumb.jpg.ffbbcf2bdbf10becac60d7715ed1d6f9.jpg

 

And then there's my rag tag assortment from loads of old games. I think there's some Advanced Heroquest dice in there, a lot of chunky old style Games Workshop dice and the real shabby looking in the bottom right are actually from my brother's days of playing 1st edition D&D so they're a bit older than me!

 

IMG_20210916_175129__01__01.thumb.jpg.1ccfeba6bfc0d8f9309621a8f3f812b2.jpg

 

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

A couple of new sets from the pot this week...

 

IMG_20210926_144019.jpg.590a5ad04972a542b17a72b20dc70b88.jpg

 

This set (which is the grey dice - I only included the pink one to show that it wasn't a photo with a b/w filter applied!) was intended to be something different. But the resin gods weren't smiling on me and some of the white mixative ended up clumping and settling on the bottom of the moulds. I was going to bin them, but ended up not since they kind of remind me of a cold, bleak, winter night, driving snow and little hope of salvation.

 

IMG_20210925_122248.jpg.baf20e099f3dc2a1726fd185b07109a6.jpg

 

I also love the traditional D4 in this set... it alone had the exact grey marbled effect I was going for! Might have to revist this later with a different mixative.

 

IMG_20210926_173556.jpg.e57e5f974bac31de2477f0a318fa2da4.jpg

 

This one was a test set for some new micro-fine glitter I picked up. In a certain light, they shimmer all kinds of colours, but it's really difficult to catch on camera.

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  • 1 month later...
  • 2 weeks later...

We also did the "Great British Ghost Hunt 2021" back around Halloween, in which crafty folks made ghost related things and left them around the place for kids to find. Great fun! My contribution was these glow in the dark oversized d20 ghost dice.

 

IMG_20211021_184200.jpg.b26ba2931de5e258e2ee6031db801888.jpg

 

IMG_20211021_184129.jpg.0c3747657d3730e363f621515f84952f.jpg

 

Rather than leave large chunks of resin around for dogs and badgers to swallow, we ended up giving them away on Instagram to nerdy crafters.

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  • 2 months later...

Some finished sets to start off the year...

 

413771487_PXL_20220124_080822138(copy).thumb.jpg.fa1d1f64d3ded9d0a16c713852dd359e.jpg

 

The prompt for this set was "cosy", so I tried to create some dice in autumnal colours. Quite happy with how they turned out. They also got a cosy crocheted dice bag!

 

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A Valentine's Day set:

 

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Finally, a set made as a gift for my old Quake 2 clan (who haven't played games seriously for about 20 years, but still hang around in Slack and natter the day away):

 

1453158050_PXL_20220220_081443413(copy).thumb.jpg.f00b107f581a472685c3b578f357662b.jpg

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  • 2 weeks later...
25 minutes ago, ScouserInExile said:

How does one go about making these dice? Are they moulded or are they 3D printed or what? 

 

Both of those, if you're going full end to end.

 

Basically, you start with some 3D printed "Master" dice (don't have to be 3D printed, you could use an existing set). Here's some that I did last year:

 

IMG_20210531_110521.jpg.45a76748f266fa2cb00c92731b46eaf1.jpg

 

The fin supports are to ensure that the dice edges print perfectly straight.

 

You then spend a lot of time sanding and polishing these dice so that they're as shiny as you can get them, then you make silicone moulds from them. Here I'm making individual moulds:

 

IMG_20210919_085201.jpg.5350695bc268b93bcef4c6fead0d501c.jpg

 

This particular type of mould is called a "cap mould", where you pour the silicone in two halves. First with the dice flat on the bottom, then again to complete the mould with the first half flipped upside down. Here's a multi-dice slab mould ready to pour the second half:

 

PXL_20220116_090112177.jpg.8fa638b3fa2d59ad67c4b03c95c958d2.jpg

 

When you separate the halves and pop out the dice, you're left with perfect imprints of all the faces. The pink bits here are blobs of plasticine that I use to form "registration keys" to ensure that the two halves align properly - basically, you dig out the plasticine before pouring the second half, so that the negative space is captured in the other half and the two bits lock together. 

 

When you have your moulds, you can then make dice! This is done by pouring coloured resin into the mould and putting it into a pressure pot at about 40psi for 24 hours. Finally, you pop them out and give them a sand and polish, then ink them by basically covering a face in paint then wiping off the excess with your finger.

 

Then you're done!

image.thumb.png.f65e2b21bcb17d20fa84ffc05966e78b.png

 

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15 hours ago, ScouserInExile said:

This is going to sound really sarcastic, but that's fascinating. 

 

Do you sell them or is it just a bit of a hobby? 

 

Hobby at the moment. I've mostly been making them for gifts. I'd like to start selling them on Etsy or somewhere eventually... if just to reduce the amount of sets of dice we have cluttering up the house at the moment :)

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2 hours ago, Dr_Dave said:

 

Hobby at the moment. I've mostly been making them for gifts. I'd like to start selling them on Etsy or somewhere eventually... if just to reduce the amount of sets of dice we have cluttering up the house at the moment :)

Can we all have first dibs? They look amazing and I'd like to buy my stepson a set of quality dice. 

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On 03/03/2022 at 17:48, ScouserInExile said:

This is going to sound really sarcastic, but that's fascinating. 

 

Do you sell them or is it just a bit of a hobby? 

 

No, I was going to say the same thing. People making shit and how they go about it fascinates me.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Another week, another set. 

 

I'm trying to get into the habit of completing a full set each week, but sometimes it's difficult to come up with new ideas. So on weeks where I can't think of anything, I just redo the last set with different colours. This week I used the same technique as with the ice set from last week, but with darker colours (a hint of violet and lots of black). The result is a lot more menacing.

 

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I love the set, mostly, but the lower sided dice look a lot better than the higher dice. The more sides, the less black is needed, otherwise it tends to overwhelm and you lose the effect. They tend to look good up close, but inky black from a distance.

 

PXL_20220320_125955177-small.thumb.jpg.b129a62bd11ea085d0df7c7e11c161c0.jpg

 

PXL_20220320_125700999-small.thumb.jpg.d5188cc8a730de70baedabd4442ead85.jpg

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  • 4 weeks later...

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