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Stencilling a Stargate 101
Goal of this Article:
A step by step tutorial on doing a perfect stencil.
This is the story of how I choose to do stencilling when needed. The subject in this case is a Williams Stargate that gets stripped to the wood and repainted.
I get a lot of questions and requests for cabinet stencils, so, to answer those questions I made this page. Essentially, stencilling is not for the impatient. Unlike commercially made stencils made of paper that give a less than desireable result, you can do them MUCH cheaper with some standard items found in your local art store and a few hours of time.
For starters, you will need the following products:
  • 36 inch Acetate Film .005 mil roll. Get enough to do the number of colors per side.
  • 3m Photo Mount spray adhesive
  • Sharp Box Cutter type razor blade
  • Painter's Tape
  • Black marker
  • Some original art or a tracing from someone else.
  • I generally make my stencils before restoring the cabinet. If time does not allow, I make tracings with one big piece of plastic or acetate that I can cut stencils from later. One trick to good stencilling is to do it in sections. Don't try to do the entire piece at one time. I generally break the art up in quadrants and cut/spray each one. You can see in Picture 2 how this is done by cutting a small piece of acetate to cover the area to be stencilled, held in place by Painter's tape. I also use the black marker to make 'registration points' by making dots on the acetate to help mark where the stencil needs to be positioned on the cabinet. Using rulers and a very steady hand, cut out the paint color you need to stencil.
    Once you have your cutout, on a piece of scrap cardboard, flip the stencil over and spray the back side liberally with photo mount adhesive. Allow the adhesive to set for about a minute, then you can carefully position the stencil onto the side of your cabinet. Using the actual roll of painter's tape you can solidly adhere the stencil in place. Once that is done, lightly spray the cutout area with your paint. The key is LIGHTLY, even if it takes 3 passes to get solid color.. Too much paint will cause a rough edge.
    I know this sounds simple, and that's because it is. Just take your time and be careful and stencilling will become very painless! Even though it's tempting to go all out and make one big stencil, even with thick cardboard the stencil quickly becomes unmanagable, leading to underspray, crooked lines etc. Total Cost to stencil a Stargate: 26.00 (compare with 150 or more from online stores)
    Ken - 9/24/2005 11:03:09 PM
    Is it hard to rebuild the power supply for a Stargate? Im new at this but want to give it a try. And where do i get a kit?
    Russ Myers - 1/5/2006 8:27:32 AM
    What exactly is the short dolly with the rolling casters that you use to move the cabinet around on? Where do you get it? Is the cabinet mounted or secured onto the dolly in any way, or just held there by weight? - Thanks
    Brian Jones - 1/6/2006 8:06:17 PM
    This cart was given to me by my friend Bob. Not sure where he got it, but it works really really well for pushing games around while restoring them.
    Russ Myers - 1/8/2006 9:53:02 PM
    Thanks, Brian. Would you mind asking Bob where he got it, if you get a chance? It really looks like a "must-buy" item if I am going to get serious about this hobby.
    Freeman - 7/30/2007 8:34:50 AM
    That looks like a standard funiture moving cart.. Look up moving carts online.. you may find it at a local store or may have to order it.
    Tony - 10/22/2007 7:23:32 PM
    Could you go into a little more detail about how you make the stencils? Also, do you take the side off to paint it? Thanks

    GameTalk about this project!