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Modeling technics

This page shows you a few useful technics to build a model. It is not a complete tutorial like those you can easily find on the net, the purpose is simply to show quickly what can be done. For more complete tutos, follow the links ‘creation partners‘ on the front page.

Transparent parts

star wars cockpit x-wing

Models transparent parts requires a special processing. In order to keep the transparency, you must abbsolutely avoid the dissolution glues (Tamiya for example) or cyanos. The dissolution glues will… dissolve the parts. The cyano glue vapors alone will be enough to damage the parts and loose the transparency. So what to do ? Joker. When you don’t know which glue to use, use the white one, the wood glue. Gluing plastics with wood glue, this is madness ! Yes but it works. Of course the gluing is not very strong but it will suffices if you are a delicate modeler.

The rodding

blockade runner tigeage

This neologism means the fact of reinforce a model structure when it’s big or includes heavy parts. All you have to do is fitting metalic rods (brass rods, most of the time) to ensure the structure sturdiness. This model parts are threaded into the rods, like a brochette. Ths major complication is to find a glue working with both metal and plastic (or resin). Bi-component epoxide glue works most of the time.

The engraving

A model may be insufficiently detailed or may have panel lines embossed. If it’s the case, you will have to engrave. Five steps to follow :

  1. Scrib the line with a scalpel. Use a ruler or a Dymo strip for straight scribing.
  2. Etch the line with the non-sharp side of your scalpel blade
  3. Sand with various grain of paper
  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 again and again
  5. Vitrify the line, that is insert superfluid glue into the line in order to dissolve the small debris made by sanding

Kitbashing

Many kits are unsufficiently detailed and need to be supplemented with other parts picked elsewere. My favourite kits for that are tanks kits. They provide many varied parts for varied use. This technique is copied to the one the ILM model makers used in the 70’s and the 80’s during the Star Wars preproduction phase. For instance, the Boba Fett’s Slave One wings come from car doors of a Porsche and the wings of the Tie Bomber have been taken almost as they were in a Vader’s Tie X-1 kit produced just after A New hope.