Hints & Tips
Useful Basic Tools:
Craft Knife or Scalpel
Pin vice & assortment of small drill bits
Sand paper or Wet & Dry paper - assorted grades
Adhesives & Fillers:
Rapid Epoxy Resin
All parts, both metal and resin, should be “cleaned” prior to assembly. Castings should have any marks of the moulding process, such as feed/spru connection points, mould parting lines and air vent spikes etc, removed. Metal can usually be gently eased back into shape if it has been bent. Bowed or bent resin parts need to be warmed either in hot water or with a hairdryer to enable them to be corrected, then cooled in cold water to set. Any voids in either material can be filled with Milliput© or car filler paste.
Always do a dry test of parts fit before applying any glue. This gives you the chance to make any adjustments to the parts which may aid more accurate assembly. The strength of the bonded joint can be improved by ensuring that the surfaces to be joined are clean & free from grease or oxide layers. Roughening the surfaces slightly with wet & dry paper will achieve this and give the glue something to grip onto. Super glue is a good general adhesive for all assembly.It is quick and, if used sparingly, doesnt appear as 'blobs' on the final model.Perhaps squeeze out a small pool of super glue onto some card and apply to joint with a pin or piece of wire. Rapid setting epoxy resin can be used but it does need to be supported until dry and is difficult to apply as invisibly as super glue. It is best used where a reinforced joint is required for extra strength perhaps in a hidden, internal position. Low-melt solder and a suitable soldering iron is an alternative for metal to metal parts. This takes a little practice and makes very strong joints, but be prepared for a few melted castings along the way ! Gaps in assemblies can be filled with the Milliput or car filler as before.
Preparation for Painting:
Allow completed model to dry thoroughly. It now needs to be washed to degrease before application of any paint. This is particularly important if solder and flux has been used. Wash in a solution of soda crystal or any degreasing agent. Washing up liquid can leave a film on the model surface, so it is best avoided. Rinse and allow to dry once again. Apply a coat of primer to the whole model. Car spray primer is the most readily available product for this purpose - cellulose or acrylic. The model can now be hand painted with any enamel or acrylic model/craft paints. Depending upon end use, i.e. if it is to be used outside, then a sealing coat of an appropriate varnish or lacquer may be required to protect the finished item.