login   |    register
Armor/AFV: Techniques
From Weathering to making tent rolls, discuss it here.
Hosted by Darren Baker
How do you build??
rebelsoldier
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Arizona, United States
Joined: June 30, 2004
KitMaker: 1,336 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Friday, April 29, 2011 - 09:10 AM UTC
this thread is outstanding for ideas given and methods used. i apreciate all the tips here.

reb

MLD
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Vermont, United States
Joined: July 21, 2002
KitMaker: 3,569 posts
AeroScale: 419 posts
Posted: Friday, April 29, 2011 - 02:51 AM UTC
Mostly in since pieces, unless they are very large / easily identifyable / not too drop-able (Panther turret, mantlet, and rear hull, but not grab handles)

The larger pieces can be snipped off and cleaned up at a TV tray with the kids watching something. Repetative roadwheels or track links the same, snipped, filed, scraped and dropped into pill bottles until needed.

Smaller piecesindividually cut when needed and sub assemblies are built at the workbench.

As for dropping parts, the MicroMark catalog had a great suggestion that I stole.

They sell a 'jewelers apron' that has velcro dots at the bottom so you can velcro to the bottom of the workbench.

It makes a pouch in your lap for dropped parts.

I took an old long sleeved t-shirt and put the velcro onto the waist of it and tied the sleves around me.

It works great!

But I would not always remember to untie before I stood up...and the knot was a little uncomfortable.

Lately I just drape an old t-shirt in a contrasting color to the kit sprues over my lap when I build. It catches 99% of the dropped parts and keeps me off the floor and at the bench.
It will not always catch 'tweezer launched ' parts, but this way I can spend more time building and less time crawling around on the floor.

Mike
SEDimmick
_VISITCOMMUNITY
New Jersey, United States
Joined: March 15, 2002
KitMaker: 1,745 posts
AeroScale: 20 posts
Posted: Friday, April 29, 2011 - 02:48 AM UTC
This is how I work:

look at kit directions and break it down to major sub-assemblies, like Hull, turret and running gear.

I normally start with the hull, assemble the "big" parts that can handle getting handled without fear of breaking them off during construction...leave off light guards, headlights, etc till later. Cut and clean up pieces that I need for that assembly.

I assemble the running gear next..but I often leave the putting on the track to last since if its link to link track it takes a while and might derail me finishing the kit.

Next I put the turret together the same way as I do hull...leave the small parts off that can get knocked off easy.

Once I have all the major stuff done, I go back and start adding the detail stuff that can get broken off easily towards the end of the build.

The good thing about this is that you can always build the turret first or the hull or alternate between the two when building..not stuck working one way.
ModelBuildingTanks
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Washington, United States
Joined: August 05, 2010
KitMaker: 146 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Thursday, April 28, 2011 - 08:03 PM UTC
No shame in asking man. Dealing with 1:35 models, I first make notes as to what I'll do. I construct the suspension, turret, and upper hull, seperately, and then coat them with primer then paint. The same thing goes with 1:48th scale but I the tracks are seperately built from the hull.
Model pictures 176
Model pictures 181
Model pictures 190
Model pictures 189
Thier basically how I put everything together before painting. Make sure you make notes while or before building!
ftauss
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Virginia, United States
Joined: August 31, 2005
KitMaker: 30 posts
AeroScale: 1 posts
Posted: Wednesday, April 27, 2011 - 02:20 PM UTC
I cut parts for each step. And sometimes even more. I have found, far to often, that it is better to piece things together (dry fit), as much as possible before preceding. Sometimes I will cut everything loose (like my Rev-Mono M48A2C) because a fair amount is already loose and I want to do a detailed assessment of what does and does not need work.

My thing is plastic zip lock bags for storage and small to medium tubs to hold parts or groupings of parts (turret, running gear, small hull parts), keeping them covered while working.

Sometimes I clean in groups, most of the time really, I just find it easier. Clean an assembly, then put it together.

I also tend to wash them in groups to. I have larger plastic tubs I dump all the parts in, add a squirt of dish detergent and a splash of bleach and fill it over the parts with hot water. I sometimes do this more than once, once to remove mold residue and again near the end before painting to remove sanding residue and skin oils from handling. (The Attack Pz 38t was vile before I washed it, not the worst ever but the worst lately). It also helps with glue as well as paint. Tubs are big enough to put an assembled model in for washing.

I have 2 large strainers (couple a bucks each at a chain store). I dump the soapy parts in there and rinse 'em off with a sprayer. I use hot water again mainly because they seem to dry faster. Of course make sure your smallest parts are bigger than the opening in the strainer.

The beauty of it all is, it ain't work with OSHA guidelines. It's fun so just do it the way that works for you.

Frank
retiredyank
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Arkansas, United States
Joined: June 29, 2009
KitMaker: 11,610 posts
AeroScale: 79 posts
Posted: Wednesday, April 27, 2011 - 02:12 PM UTC

Quoted Text

...try to find the Rubber colours from Valejo Panzer Aces series, it works better than the usual matt black.



I've found that the color of rubber on road wheels varies from army to army and even from time frame or model. I've found anthracite grey, grimy black, and straight black are the norms. I try to keep a supply of each color since I don't always know what my next build will be.
Nito74
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Lisboa, Portugal
Joined: March 04, 2008
KitMaker: 5,386 posts
AeroScale: 635 posts
Posted: Wednesday, April 27, 2011 - 01:01 PM UTC
That might be it Damon.
I've been away from the hobby twice, and the comeback is always full of doubts
"will I be able to pull it off ?" -- "Can I still do this ?".. trust me you're not the only one..

Just give it a try, if you're not happy with the results, try another kit, another approach, a different technique...
didgeboy
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Washington, United States
Joined: September 21, 2010
KitMaker: 1,846 posts
AeroScale: 103 posts
Posted: Tuesday, April 26, 2011 - 05:56 PM UTC
I think I am just being overly cautious. I haven't really built a kit in five to ten years, seriously and am afraid that my jedi ways are old and out dated. It sound like I just need to have a bit more confidence in my abilities. Thank you for the advice and encouragement. Cheers.
Nito74
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Lisboa, Portugal
Joined: March 04, 2008
KitMaker: 5,386 posts
AeroScale: 635 posts
Posted: Tuesday, April 26, 2011 - 02:28 PM UTC
Hi Damon,

I only use primer when I have metal or resin parts, most of the time I first paint the model in one base colour (grey/brown). But always the whole kit.

Here's my process:
- Building following the instructions, always dryfit and test first.
- Marking all sub-assemblies and/or detail painting with a pen or pencil to pickup after the building stage.
- Building by stages (lower hull - wheels - top hull - turret )
- Primer & basic painting + details marked previously

I paint the wheels separately , still on the sprue sometimes, spray it on both sides. Then I detach them, clean it and start painting the rubber parts, try to find the Rubber colours from Valejo Panzer Aces series, it works better than the usual matt black.

This might not be the best method, but it's working so far... anyway keep asking if you need any help !

didgeboy
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Washington, United States
Joined: September 21, 2010
KitMaker: 1,846 posts
AeroScale: 103 posts
Posted: Tuesday, April 26, 2011 - 10:28 AM UTC
Seems we are all on the same path there. Good to know. Follow up question, do you primer your whole kit or do it in sub assemblies? When do you paint your wheels and running gear?
I have one kit mostly built that just needs the detail parts and has most of the colour on it. Running gear needs black for the road wheels and am wondering if there is a better way than doing them by hand. My apologies if these questions seem dumb, but I have always thought the only dumb question is the one that never gets asked. . . cheers.
retiredyank
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Arkansas, United States
Joined: June 29, 2009
KitMaker: 11,610 posts
AeroScale: 79 posts
Posted: Saturday, April 23, 2011 - 09:29 AM UTC
[quote]I glued my hand to my ... my hand to my butt crack with superglue [quote]
Do I even want to know how you managed to glue your hand to your butt crack?
vonHengest
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Texas, United States
Joined: June 29, 2010
KitMaker: 5,854 posts
AeroScale: 372 posts
Posted: Saturday, April 23, 2011 - 09:05 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Adam, damn near pissed myself with the comments about gluing things. Thank you all again. This really is a great community and just bummed that it took me this long to find it. And to be quite honest, I was considering getting rid of all my kits back in August and realized with this site that there still is interest in it for me and some of the happiest days of my youth were spent building. Thank you.



It took me a while to find this site myself and I only recently joined last summer. It's given me the the motivational push(es) I've needed to move forward and get into building and all the other fun stuff involved.

I'm learning different methods of building myself. So far what I'm finding that works best for me it to remove and clean up all of the large major parts which are usually distinctive enough to not have to worry about mixing up during building. Then I work in steps for different sections of the build, say the suspension for example, and remove all of the appropriate parts for cleaning and assembly. If necessary I number pieces with a fine tip Sharpie so that I don't have to worry about mixing them up. Just be sure to mark in a place that won't be seen. If it has indy tracks on a sprue, then I like to leave them on for painting. I leave all of the little delicate pieces on the sprue until I am ready to instal them, which is usually after assembling all of the larger pieces.

I'm not too concerned about finding a "correct" way of building, I'm just learning from all of the fine fellows here and putting together the techniques that work best for me
meaty_hellhound
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Alberta, Canada
Joined: July 23, 2010
KitMaker: 786 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Saturday, April 23, 2011 - 04:26 AM UTC
like most, i cut as i need pieces but a tip i use for something that is made from multiple pieces that kind of look similar is i always place the numbered pieces lowest to highest from left to right in front of me for gluing.

say i'm building a gun breach from four pieces and the sides look the same once removed, i put parts 12, 13, 14 and 15 from left to right on my workbench. this speeds up the process as i never have any questions as to which piece is what after they are removed from the sprue. done this for years and it's just second nature now.

good question as it is this kind that gets constructive feedback for many to share methods, cheers bd.

PS: if i lose a piece, it is gone forever which means until i scratchbuild a new one and lose that... then while searching the original missing piece always pops up. at which point i accidently break it and now i need that lost scratchbuilt piece.
SdAufKla
_VISITCOMMUNITY
South Carolina, United States
Joined: May 07, 2010
KitMaker: 2,238 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Saturday, April 23, 2011 - 03:35 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Ah....so I'm not alone and dropping small pieces and losing them, actually, they are probably large pieces but my eyesight now is shot to pieces so everything looks small ....



Mark, I spend so much time on my knees, head down and butt up, that I now consider that an essential part of my personal exercise program! "Get down! Get up! Get down! Get up!"

In fact, my poor wife won't even come into my workroom anymore. She's convinced that every time she comes in, I drop something, and she then blames herself. I try telling her, "Hey honey, I drop stuff all the time. It's not your fault." But, she's convinced it's all her doing for distracting me or something.

I think I spent about as much time yesterday on the floor looking for dropped bits and pieces as I did sitting in my chair. I even keep a flashlight handy on my work bench for looking under it for missing bits.

I'm also glad I'm not alone "suffering with this cronic syndrom."
Gorizont
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Sachsen, Germany
Joined: November 28, 2007
KitMaker: 1,462 posts
AeroScale: 27 posts
Posted: Saturday, April 23, 2011 - 02:00 AM UTC
Mostly I cut only parts, which I next plan to use... which sometimes is very slow, but safe.
But also I have "scenarios" I cut more than the actually needed parts, to dry-fit some parts or make the next step while the actual step is drying.

That depends on my actual time, mood, the kit and its instructions.

greetings...
Soeren
Delbert
#073
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Pennsylvania, United States
Joined: October 05, 2002
KitMaker: 2,659 posts
AeroScale: 209 posts
Posted: Saturday, April 23, 2011 - 01:26 AM UTC
Very Slowly...


I take the parts off as I need them

laters.
allycat
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - North East, United Kingdom
Joined: October 03, 2004
KitMaker: 942 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Friday, April 22, 2011 - 08:25 PM UTC
I cut 'em as I need 'em.
I also try and clean up the part as much as possible before removing it. I find it (sometimes) makes it easier to hold.
Tom
didgeboy
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Washington, United States
Joined: September 21, 2010
KitMaker: 1,846 posts
AeroScale: 103 posts
Posted: Friday, April 22, 2011 - 06:19 PM UTC
Adam, damn near pissed myself with the comments about gluing things. Thank you all again. This really is a great community and just bummed that it took me this long to find it. And to be quite honest, I was considering getting rid of all my kits back in August and realized with this site that there still is interest in it for me and some of the happiest days of my youth were spent building. Thank you.
mother
_VISITCOMMUNITY
New York, United States
Joined: January 29, 2004
KitMaker: 3,836 posts
AeroScale: 1,036 posts
Posted: Friday, April 22, 2011 - 05:57 PM UTC
About 99% of the time I cut and clean all the parts. Here’s what works for me, during the weekends while watching the NASCAR races (Fri, Sat and Sun) I’ll pull out a kit to prep. I’ll cut, sand and clean parts. I’ll leave the tiny fragile parts on sprues. As of now I have many kits ready to build, example…I’m working on five F/A-18’s here and there and just finished 2 Abrams kits that I started last year.

I do however put pieces into those small sandwich baggies, full cockpit sections, road wheels on so on.

You might be thinking “he’s just cleaning kits and not building”…no not the case as I’m always building while prepping for the future.

Do I loss parts…no (knock on wood)

I also go back to prepped kits and glue major parts together, wing halves , drop tanks and well you get the picture. I’ll throw them back into the box and later come back to sanding and finishing the build. Once again throwing back into box for painting another time.

In the end…I have many kits in various stages.

Happy Modeling,
Joe
dioman13
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Indiana, United States
Joined: August 19, 2007
KitMaker: 2,184 posts
AeroScale: 54 posts
Posted: Friday, April 22, 2011 - 03:18 PM UTC
I'm with the rest of the guys. But things like road wheel, boggies ect, if there are a lot of parts, I cut them off for sub assembly and use one of those plastic ice cube trays. I put the cut offs in the top row and as I come back to clean them up, put them in the lower section. Then I sub assemble and move on to the next sub assemble. I usually sub out the whole model, makes painting a bit easier. Just remember that you can knock over a tray, don't ask me how, it just happens, just like paint, glue, ect, ect.
Adamskii
_VISITCOMMUNITY
South Australia, Australia
Joined: November 06, 2010
KitMaker: 537 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Friday, April 22, 2011 - 03:09 PM UTC
Im guilty as charged of speed building.

I leave things on the sprue until needed, and have not yet met a person who removes it all first (except one guy who cleaned about 800 parts at once for a gundam robot... had them all lined up on boards with each part numbered etc )

I too paint things on the sprue sometimes.

I speed build because I dont like building. I like painting. I build to get to the paint. Also when I build I usually do it with large blocks of time 5- 7 hours at a time sometimes twice a day (before and after work), and when I put a blog post up, it has what some people might consider 2 weeks work if they only did an hour a day. So speed is relative perhaps?

I wish I could take my time but im quite short attention spanned and very impatient. I want to decal wet paint. I want to wash fresh base coats.. primer coats slow me down,, etc etc. Im a very lazy modeller sometimes, I wish i took more time and the quality would be even better!

Sometimes when scratchbuilding it looks like it goes fast because build time only happens after a looong time of thought and preparation. I might take years to read things accumulate pictures, ask questions on posts etc before starting a scratchbuild, but when I do its with confidence I have nutted out all the problems before hand, and can just go for it!

I also have a horrible carpet monster living under my desk. he eats parts on regular basis. I swear i am clumsiest modeller in existance. for every piece I pick up i drop two more. serious. My wife knows when I am modelling as there is a constant one way conversation of cursing comming from the hobby room. In the last 3 months I glued my hand to my forhead with superglue, my hand to the wall with superglue, my hand to my butt crack with superglue and my shorts to my leg with superglue. Not to mention the dozens of superglue spills on kit parts. Not to mention thinning enamel with acrylic thinners and vice versa. Yeah clumsy, impatient, noisy, lazy - thats how I roll.

Adumbskii

reccymech
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Victoria, Australia
Joined: February 20, 2011
KitMaker: 87 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Friday, April 22, 2011 - 02:25 PM UTC
Ah....so I'm not alone and dropping small pieces and losing them, actually, they are probably large pieces but my eyesight now is shot to pieces so everything looks small

I'm now back into the modeling gig after a bit of 'time away', so I'm too picking up where I left off. I'm trying to accelerate my 'learning', probably biting off a bit more than I can chew but this forum and threads like this only help me and I guess others.

And just for the record, I too leave the piece on the sprue till required then remove and clean up, as required. I do like the idea of a final clean with 0000 steel wool (cheers for that gem SdAufKla).

Thanks guys.
retiredyank
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Arkansas, United States
Joined: June 29, 2009
KitMaker: 11,610 posts
AeroScale: 79 posts
Posted: Friday, April 22, 2011 - 01:41 PM UTC
Some of the faster builds you see, like mine, are because the modeller has more time to devote to the build. Normally, I cut parts from the sprue as needed. With repetitiive assemblies, I cut all the parts at the same time. I also build subassemblies separately. I have lost far too many parts to the carpet monster. I currently have three kits on the back burner for lack of critical pieces. I would suggest that you build in your comfort zone. I have all day to build models, since I draw disability. Otherwise, I would suggest building 1 or 2 subassemblies each day.
didgeboy
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Washington, United States
Joined: September 21, 2010
KitMaker: 1,846 posts
AeroScale: 103 posts
Posted: Friday, April 22, 2011 - 01:28 PM UTC
Gentlemen, thank you one and all. I am glad to know that I am not the only turtle here. I have been feeling a bit inadequate with some of the amazing work that goes on here, very impressive. I have just gotten out of the hobby after a few years and am building my first kit since, well since a while. . . .
Thank you all for the reassurance and thank you all for your continued support. It is nice to have a community where you can ask stupid questions and not be made to feel even dumber. Cheers to all of you.
retiredbee2
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Florida, United States
Joined: May 04, 2008
KitMaker: 757 posts
AeroScale: 16 posts
Posted: Friday, April 22, 2011 - 12:02 PM UTC
I cut off the pieces only when I am ready to glue them or do a sub assembly. Sometimes paint while on the sprue. No point in cutting off all the parts and leaving them in a pile as that would be hard to find the pieces. What I do to make it easier to find the pieces as I go, is to remove and throw away the excess sprue, thus continually shrinking the size of the remaining sprue and making the remaining parts easier to spot. By the time I am finished there is little remaining sprue left.