Tools of the Trade

Got a question about techniques, materials or other aspects of physically building a model? This is the place to ask.

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Splatcat
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Post by Splatcat » Sat Nov 14, 2009 10:25 pm

I use plastic kool-aid cans alot.
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Glorfindel
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Post by Glorfindel » Wed May 25, 2011 6:42 am

I see that 2009 was the last post on this thread but I have a few items I keep in my tool box. First are some scribing aids. Most people draw out panel lines but never say what they draw them out with. I'll lend a little advice that works well for me. I draw panel lines out first using a very dark lead pencil, specifically an artists drawing pencil called Ebony. I'll go in and scribe, then I will erase any lead marks left behind with a kneaded eraser. A kneaded eraser is like a wad of clay that can be molded and formed to fit in tight corners and most small areas.
Next up is a simple bright LED light pen. I use this when I know I'm lighting a model and show the light through the hull, or any other lit up part, to check for light leak. This is a really handy item.
Index Cards for creating templates. When new parts need to be scratch built I make it first with index cards to scale. I'll do this two or three times until I'm happy with the fit then transfer my best templates to plastic card/styrene sheet for finished product.
I'll have to go through my tool box for more stuff...I know I can lend a little bit extra to this thread.
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Post by Tankmodeler » Wed May 25, 2011 7:37 pm

Actually, speaking of storage boxes, I've found the small plastic boxes for baby wipes to be perfect for storing model parts for many types of projects. They stack, they have a positively closed lid, you can mark on the box to let you know what's inside.

I build a lot of AFV kits and most 1/35 tanks will fit perfectly inside during the construction phase. The same can be said of things like ST shuttles, SW fighters, etc.

Even if you don't have a baby, frequently, you can ask a local day-care to save them for you, same if you know any families with kids in diapers.

Plus, of course, the boxes smell nice! :)

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Re: Cheap paint brush holder

Post by AbsoluteSciFi » Sat Jun 11, 2011 6:58 pm

starmanmm wrote:Instead of throwing away the covers to your rattle cans.... turn them into paint brush holders.

I did it by cutting out a notch, across from each other, on the cover. These notches will allow you to lay a paint brush across the cover and out of harms way while you are using it.

So while I am brushing, if I have to put the brush down for a second, I just place it in the notches and they don't get in my way or add more paint to my workbench.

Yeah, I got way too much time on my hands!
I have a one-up from that... (having been an artist for 30 years)

There are MANY ways to make a temporary holder for your brushes, though most of the time I just put the damn thing in my mouth!

Place a small strip of steel tape on the end of the brush, and put a magnetic tool strip on the wall somewhere. This is good because you don't want your brush tip up.

Cut an old Clorox bottle so that the handle is left up to the cap. The open face is free to the inside. Put a strip of duct tape facing out along the inside middle of the open face. Now when you hang your brush on the tape, it is centered in the middle, and the tip can be out of the water/thinner/solvent or in the solution.

Bend a clothes hanger into a long line of "c's" that a brush can be snapped into.

Buy a cabinet snap, mount it where ever you like.

Buy a brush holder from artist supply store.

Cut a notch in a block of wood, and drill holes in it too, works for anything that is long and cylindrical.

Stick it in some of that green floral foam, that is all its good for!
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rayra
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Re: Cheap paint brush holder

Post by rayra » Tue Jul 10, 2012 3:12 am

starmanmm wrote:Instead of throwing away the covers to your rattle cans.... turn them into paint brush holders.

I did it by cutting out a notch, across from each other, on the cover. These notches will allow you to lay a paint brush across the cover and out of harms way while you are using it.

So while I am brushing, if I have to put the brush down for a second, I just place it in the notches and they don't get in my way or add more paint to my workbench.

Yeah, I got way too much time on my hands!
a block of green floral arrangement foam works well, just stab the paintbrush handle down into it. Wet end up.
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TazMan2000
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Post by TazMan2000 » Mon Apr 22, 2013 3:27 pm

I picked up a Ryobi table top band saw the other day, and all I can say is I don't know why I didn't pick up one of these tools before. What a time saver. It doesn't melt the plastic much,This working with my 10 inch disk sander is going to make things a lot easier. For instance, if you ever have to cut multiple copies of the exact same part. Use a tiny bit of super glue and sandwich the styrene together. Cut and shape and then use a knife or a thin tool to separate them.

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Post by srspicer » Mon Apr 22, 2013 3:54 pm

Good trick! ( I've been doing the S.glue trick on stacked plastics for ever)

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Post by Joseph C. Brown » Mon Apr 22, 2013 8:23 pm

This is one of those "you shouldn't have to tell anyone this" kind of things, but, triple-check that you have a firm grip on your material before applying it to the belt sander.

In the rather cool book, "Fallingwater The Model" by Paul Bonfilio, he describes a belt sander 'oops' with the nearly completed model.

And I personally have sent many a piece of plastic whizzing across my mancave with my belt sander...
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Tools of the trade

Post by BruceKW » Sun Mar 23, 2014 12:53 am

Here is a list of tool I use to model with in both trains and soon to be in space models.

A all in one printer to resize patterns and drawings to desired scale(I use a Kodak 3250 aio printer as I can enlarge and reduce images in 1% increments comes in very handy.

Computer w/internet for searching for reference materials.

Various, exacto knives and blades.

A styrene cuter/score knife

Various paints both spray can and model and even craft acrylic paints(great for painting up figures for a non-plastic shiny look)

Dry transfers (I hate water slide decals) for letters and numbers

various precision screw drivers

Casting and molding supplies(for stir sticks and mixing cups I get these at a dollar store)

3D printer still learning its advantages and limitations.

Plastic odds and ends like old film canisters deep plastic containers for use as a mold box ect.

And my favorite recycle item is reclaimed card stock from dry food boxes like cereal boxes. I use this as a disposable work surface for casting, painting and gluing. I have even use it as a building material.

Oh almost forgot I have a cheap alternative to a rotary tool it was originally packaged as a k9 pedicure toe nail grinder, it has a chuck that most rotary bits and attachments will fit in and it is a cordless rechargeable unit with speed control, I think I got it from All electronics for around 8 or 9 bucks .

two tools that I will get in the near future are a vacuum former(even if it means building my own) and Decal pro fx system it lets you make your own custom dry transfers.

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Re: Tools of the Trade

Post by CarlGo » Wed Jun 28, 2017 8:17 pm

I have a resin kit that has extra resin gunking up the attachment slot:
http://i.imgur.com/A33chR9.jpg
What tools do you suggest to clean that out? I have a dremel rotary tool but I’m not sure if I have the proper attachments for this kind of job.
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Kylwell
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Re: Tools of the Trade

Post by Kylwell » Wed Jun 28, 2017 9:13 pm

Sharp chisel set and a light hammer. http://www.micromark.com/Miniature-Chisels-Set-Of-7
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admiralcag
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Re: Tools of the Trade

Post by admiralcag » Thu Jun 29, 2017 5:31 am

How light?

Seriously, how do these compare to your really nice chisels?

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Kylwell
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Re: Tools of the Trade

Post by Kylwell » Thu Jun 29, 2017 9:26 am

Light light http://www.micromark.com/Hobby-Hammer-w ... eable-Tips

Heck I've improvised with a decent spanner @ times.

The MicroMark chisels are nice, and they come pretty damned sharp but lose their edge faster than the Yellow House Model ones. YHM chisels are scary sharp.
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admiralcag
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Re: Tools of the Trade

Post by admiralcag » Sat Jul 01, 2017 7:43 am

Do you think they would sharpen well?

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Kylwell
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Re: Tools of the Trade

Post by Kylwell » Sat Jul 01, 2017 10:26 am

They do. I've sharpened them a couple of times. Usually just re-dressing the edge but I've had to re-edge a few also. My fault not theirs.
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TazMan2000
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Re: Tools of the Trade

Post by TazMan2000 » Fri Sep 08, 2017 9:55 am

Old toothbrushes are ideal for removing dust from scribing and sanding. They have many other uses such as spreading talc into RTV moulds.

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Kylwell
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Re: Tools of the Trade

Post by Kylwell » Fri Sep 08, 2017 11:44 am

And now, having gotten to play with a Godhand 5.0 flush cut sprue cutter I can tell you... yeah they're worth the $45.
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