Rat Fink

brainchild of  Ed “Big Daddy” Roth

Manufacturer: Tornado Designs

Sculptor: Unknown

Material: Polystone

Scale: no scale


The Ratfink was created by visionary automotive designer and builder, artist, genius, etc. – Ed “Big Daddy” Roth and in Ed’s ‘words, he was the evil cousin of Mickey Mouse’.


We lost Ed in 2001 but RF has lived on, more popular than ever. As a tribute, in 2006, Tornado Designs created this piece and distributed it to 83 artists to build and paint in any manner they saw fit. The pieces were then collected and published in a book called “Rat Fink’s Revenge”. After seeing this book, and being a Fink Fan since childhood, I really wanted to build one of these great kits. It is, by far, the best rendition of the Fink ever produced.


The kit was nicely packaged in a labeled box and packed in form-fitting Styrofoam with the accompanying, slipcased book, poster and numbered COA. It came in 5 polystone pieces – the body, 2 feet, a tail and a nose.


I have never worked with polystone before and I’m not sure I ever want to again. The closest thing I can compare it to is porcelain resin. This kit is just like any other hollow cast resin kit and suffered from some of the same issues. There were spots as thin as tissue and when you sanded them, or even touched them in some cases, the surface broke through leaving a hole. There was a connector of material between the arms and the torso that had to be ground away. I don’t know if this was intentional or not but it was on both sides to double my pleasure. Grinding poly-stone is not fun. It’s harder than regular resin, doesn’t smooth well, creates a lot of dust and will eat up a Dremel bit in no time. After the usual prep work of washing, sanding, puttying, more sanding and priming, he was ready for paint.


The entire kit is painted in acrylics using my airbrush and hand painting the details, many of which I don’t think really show up in the photos. The clothes and skin have multiple layers of colors to give them more depth. I applied has several washes of varying colors on the fence for aging, there are oil spills on the ground and much more.


Since the kit came without a base I had to create one so he wouldn’t be floating out in space on my shelf. I decided to create a scene in which Finky is up to no good, vandalizing a fence in a parking lot with the declaration that “ROTH LIVES!”. I built the fence out of balsa wood , cut and nailed together. The grade was Aves putty covered with dirt and scenic grass. The asphalt was made using textured modeling paste.


I must admit this base was one of the more fun projects I had done in a while.







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For Hire