Vault tales 70 3D Printed Yellowfin Toadfish

HAPPY NEW YEAR! First off, I’d like to thank anyone that reads these for sticking with me into a new year! So let’s open it with a fish. Of course.

Who makes it? A friend through a collecting forum made the file for me–and it was printed at the university where I work! Then I painted it.

When did it come out? Well, I’ve had the file for a year…and it was printed in the summer. And I painted it about a month ago.

I don’t paint often. I’m not great at this. But with a toadfish their patterns are so mottled and random it’s hard to mess it up.

Still available? I suppose if someone had the file. Ask if you like, but I will ask the creator first before I’d be comfortable sharing it!

Where can it be found in my displays? I have a shelf of 3D printed fish that I’ve painted. Of course it’s there.

And from the other side. Interestingly, I don’t think I actually got the fins yellow enough…also note that to get around the anal fin being really wide, it’s folded onto just one side, so not visible here.

How does it fit in the collection? A figure of a fish that isn’t otherwise made by anyone at all? I literally needed this one.

Any story behind it? Kind of a long one. A paper came out in 2017 describing the taxonomy of all of the bony fishes, and I noticed that all of families had been reassessed into some broad super-ordinal levels. So I reworked my database to align all of the fish figures into those groupings…and discovered that there were literally 6 of these clades that I had no representation for. A few existed as figures that I just hadn’t picked up or noticed before(Japanese figures, of course). I picked those up of course, but was still short a few. I put out the word on the collecting forums, etc. But it appeared that there were none made of those groups–including Toadfish (Batrachoidiaria). Surprising, I know!? They are familiar fish in many places, yet no one makes a figure apparently. But a friend got in touch and had some 3D files they’d made–and let me have them (it was the Toadfish and a Milkfish as well–no figures of them or their relatives either). So then I only had to get them printed–and like I said, the university where I work has a New Media department that was able to print them for me. Then I had to prep and paint. Which I avoided until the toadfish came up in my random list…and now I have one, ready to display on the shelf.

And from above–where it can be seen that the head shoudl be broader.

Notable remarks about this figure (a review that isn’t really a review): Okay, clearly I can’t judge the paint job. I did it. I’m not too disappointed in what I got it to look like. As for the sculpt, the only thing I can think of is that the head and forebody should be wider, instead the body is more sleek. A little goby-ish in the body, although the fins are more toadfish. In general the fins look good, and the open mouth is typical of a toadfish! The choice of colours were chosen to reflect a yellowfin toadfish, as this was the species given for the model itself. I hope did the species justice. I had some issue with some of the spines and clean up because of the super thin fins–one of the dorsal spines broke away…

The model is almost exactly 1:1 scale with a real one, so that’s nice. I’d still like a smaller figure at some point though.

Would I recommend it? I always recommend fish…although of course this one isn’t really available. It has some things don’t quite match up correctly, but it works for the only toadfish figure that exists. In fact, there were actually three figures in the file, but this was the only one that printed solid enough and cleaned up well enough to be prepared for painting. But what this figure represents is such a great future for animal models–even if an animal is obscure, a figure can still exist for people that have some kind of bizarre need for them, without a massive need for large and expensive runs–just enough for the people who need them! Of course, if one of the major companies make an official toadfish figure I would still be all about that. And a few other obscure, unmade groups too.

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