Introduction: Borderlands Inspired Nerf Centurion Paint

About: Hi everybody! I'm Filippo from Bologna, Italy! My friends call me Orso (Bear) :) I follow Instructables since 2009, and it has always been one of my favourite websites. I've bulit a lot of fantastic things tha…

This Ible is in the Halloween Prop Contest and Epilog Contest VII!

Hi friends, it's Filippo from Italy!

Well, it's been a LOT of time since my last Ible, which is dated August 2014. Unfortunately, due to difficult work time, I have very little time to be a maker, and even less to create Ibles about my little projects.

BUT! I've found the time to share with you this new Nerf Paint project for the beautiful Nerf Centurion, one of the longest Nerf rifles that you can buy. It's really a beautiful toy, with a nice pattern and a design that I love.

And this time too, like usual, Borderlands inspired me!

I've started making this prop looking at some Maliwan weapons, but I've ended up with something a little different.

Well, let's move on! Hope you like it my friends :)

Step 1: Materials and Tools

Ok, let's make our usual list here!

You'll need:

  • a Nerf Centurion (obviously)
  • Rough and fine sandpaper (I usually go with 100 and 240 grit)
  • (OPTIONAL) a Dremel or similar power tool
  • Different spray paints, in this case: black, blue, orange, white (avory)
  • Spray primer for plastic
  • Fine brush for details
  • Various acrilyc paints for details: I have used black and silver ones
  • Some screwdrivers
  • Masking paper tape and a xacto knife

And now, some tips for you!

Spray paints: acrylic or water based ones are usually the best choiche, but they're also more expensive. More generic hobby's paints are also good, just be sure that they are NOT nitro or solvent based ore they can mess up with the plastic! I've liquified the handle of a little gun once, with a solvent paint XD

Step 2: Disassembling and Sanding

Now, the boring part.

It's time to take out all of the little screws on the chassis of this big boy. There are a lot of them (between 20-30 screws of different sizes), be sure to have a cup or a little tupperware to put all of these screws and keep them safe for later! If you lose the screws you will cry :_(

A long and thin screwdriver will serve you well here :)

Avoid thick screwdrivers because there are some deep holes on the chassis that are difficult to reach.

Suggestion: tape all the internal side of the chassis that hold the gears, so you wont paint it or lose some falling part!

Bro tip: take A TON of photos of the inside, this will help you to assemble back the rifle.

And now, it's sanding time!

(OPTIONAL): if you haver a Dremel or similar power tools, you can easily remove Nerf logos across the chassis with a low grit (60-80-100) accessory!

Take your low grit (100 is perfect) sanpaper and start with a fast general sanding, to prepare the surface.

After that, use a medium grit (240) sandpaper and spend some time to sand details and little corners.

Why is sanding important?

The trick of sanding is not removing the default paint scheme, but to create a porous surface (instead of a sleek and clear one) that is PERFECT for new layers of paint.

Step 3: The Tripod

To create some cool contrast, I've made an Avory Tripod.

While the rifles will be blue, black and orange, I decided to paint the tripod in a white-cream style.

First of all, remove the screws of this accessory. It's easy, there are just few for this piece.

After that, spray 1 layer of plastic primer.

Bro tip: I use a mat transparent plastic primer, which is also GREAT for a finishing and protective spray!

It also has the pro to be ready to paint in minutes, which is great when you have to do a lot of different parts.

Then, it's time for the white spray.

I've not used a pure white, but an avory one, that looks more real! I also suggest to avoid ludic paints for these props, mat looks better!

Bro tip: light colors are difficult to spray, you'll need 2 or 3 layers of white to a good result.

Now we have to bring alive our replica with the DRY BRUSH TECHNIQUE!

You can obtain a very good color by mixing silver with a bit of black, and always use a fine brush!

By clicking here you can see an explanation of this trick that I used in several different projects!

Bro tip: dry brush is perfect for giving depth and realism on the prop with a war look. If you want a sleek and clean prop avoid it.

Step 4: Black Layer

Now things are getting easier.

Lay down all of the pieces and spray 1-2 layers of plastic primer.

After that, spray at least 2 hands of black paint.

Bro tip: black paint will create a nice and homogeneus surface for further paint jobs.

Wait some hours from each layers.

Note: I avoided the black layer on the barrel because I want it to look a little more vivid thank the other pieces.

Step 5: Main Chassis

Mask all the areas of the rifle that you want to keep black with some paper tape.

Bro tip: help yourself with an xacto knife to refine edges of the masking!

In my case, I want the handle and part of the rifle butt to be black, because I will create some silver details that will look better on black layer.

Then, I painted all the un-masked areas of the main chassis with a single layer of blue paint.

Blue is a strong and dark color, spraying only one layer will make some black color to pop out from corners, creating beautiful shadows and details.

Easy peasy!

Step 6: Orange Parts

Now it's time for orange.

I've painted orange the barrel , the magazine and the interanl chassis that keep the barrel up.

Spray only one layer to recreate the trick of the previous steo!

As you can see frome the image, shadows and details created by the base layer of black are even more stronger with a light color as orange.

Bro tip: remember, avoid lucid paints for a more real look.

Now, wait for everything to be completely dry. I suggest to wait an entire night.

Step 7: Dry Brush Magic!

It's magic time again: click here to read about the dry brush technique.

I've applied dry brush on every black and blue parts, avoiding the orange ones because it would have look strange (silver details on orange surface are weird!).

I've always mixed silver with a bit of black and used a small high quality brush.

On parts like bolts and screws, I've loaded the brush with pure silver to make them pop out.

Bro tip: for details like these, be sure to have a dry brush, without any drop of water.

The result is satisfying!

Step 8: Assemble And...done!

Now the hardest part, as always!

You have to assemble the rifle back. Use all your photos taken before and all the reference photos that you can find to help yourself.

This part is really hard, took me about 1 hour, but you can do it my friend! It's like a puzzle!

After this fatigue, you'll have a functional and war ready beautiful Nerf Centurion!

Now, my friends, it's time for WAR! The fake one, luckily :D

Have fun!


Epilog Contest VII

Participated in the
Epilog Contest VII

Halloween Props Contest 2015

Participated in the
Halloween Props Contest 2015