I had an old beat up NES system that I wanted to refurbish and bring back to life. In this day and age, NES systems are fairly retro so I decided I would go with a retro feel to the paint job. Nothing says retro like gold and wood grain. All it needs now is a scotch and some leather bound books. The carbon fiber was just out of pure curiosity to see how it would look in combination. I think it adds an interesting contrast. Hope you like it!
Step 1: Base Coats
So I neglected to take pictures of the break down process but it is fairly simple (Sorry!). There are a dozen or so screws on the bottom of the Nintento and inside that must be removed. Once the processing board is taken out, you are left with two halfs of the shell. The top half, controller, and gun zapper i painted beige in preparation for the wood grain hydrographic film. With the bottom part, I went with a metalic silver mixed with a bit of blue for the carbon fiber. All the accent pieces were painted with metalic gold. All of this was done with automotive paint. It seems to be the best for the hydrodipping process and allows for a durable paint job once it's all done.
Step 2: Wood Grain and Gold Top
The top was dipped in a wood grain pattern. I then masked off the venting and painted underneath it gold. You will see in a later picture how that adds a nice perspective illusion to the top. depending on where you stand, you can see the gold come through the venting.
Step 3: Bottom Dipped in Carbon Fiber
The bottom was dipped through a carbon fiber pattern film. (Sorry for no photos of the dipping process. since I do it all by myself, there is no one to take pictures when both my hands are occupied.) The nice thing about hydrodipping is it contours to the shape of the object very nicely with minimal warping of the pattern if you do it right.
Quick rundown of hydrodipping :
- paint the object with a hard enamel paint (automotive paint works very well)
- get a suitable tank and fill with 95-100 degree water
- lay film on water for 1 minute - spray with film activator - press object through the liquid film
- rinse piece off of any sticky disolved film (ink pattern should stay adhered to the enamel paint)
- clearcoat to protect from damage
Step 4: Gun and Controller Dips
Dismantling the controller and gun were very simple. just a few screws and they popped apart. It is important that ALL electronics are removed from the objects you want to dip as they will be fully submerged in water. With the controller, once the wood grain film was transferred on and allowed to try overnight, I masked it off and painted the face of it gold.
Step 5: Puting the Piece Back Together
Once you get a nice clear coat on and allow it to dry, it is time to put all the piece back on!
Step 6: Controller Rebuilt
this is the controller front and back. replacing the buttons and electronics was very simple. there are 6 screws you need to make sure are in place. They will hold the electronic board in place. there are rubber fittings between the plastic buttons and the board that must be in place for it to work properly. One of the most important parts was cleaning the painted buttons to make sure they fit properly in their proper spots. I used an xacto knife to clean off any unnecessary paint and they fit perfectly!
Step 7: Rebuilt Zapper
Once the wood grain was done, I masked it off and painted the bottom and hand grip gold. Putting the zapper back together was slightly tricky, the trigger mechanism must be put back properly with the springs in place or it will not fire correctly. Once all the electronics and trigger mechanism were back in place it was as easy as putting the other half on and screwing them together.
Step 8: Final Product
Once everything was put back together, I threw the rubber footings back on it with some glue and she was done! Everything is in working order. It still plays games perfectly. Hope you liked my project. Again, I apologize not every step was documented but I hope there was enough there to give you some inspiration for you next project!
Runner Up in the