Modeling Products

Reviews of general scale modeling products such as paint, glue, etc.

Dropper - Short Version

Published: February 4th, 2016     
Dropper - Short Version
Reviewed by: Dave Morrissette, IPMS# 33653
Scale: n/a
Company: Eduard

Eduard has been issuing the world’s best photoetch for a long time now and I have watched many of my modeling friends use all sorts of things to add CA glue to the parts- toothpicks, dental tools, sprue parts and many more. The issue is how to apply the minimum amount of glue needed. Eduard has issued a nifty little tool to help apply the glue.

The parts come on a photoetch fret with 20 droppers. The droppers have a etched lower part and come to a tip with two small forks. Use is simple- cut the dropper free and make sure not to damage the tip. It is designed to fit into a #11 knife handle. Place it into the handle like a knife blade and tighten it up.

To use it, put a pool of glue near where you work. Dip the tip in and place the tip onto where you want it. I tried different thicknesses of glue. The thinner the glue, the better it flows off but even fresh gap filling works well. It took a little practice but eventually, I got good a putting down a single dot as it shows in the pictures.

Photo-Etch Tool Kit

Published: January 7th, 2016     
Photo-Etch Tool Kit
Reviewed by: Dick Montgomery, IPMS# 14003
Company: Xuron

One of the lessons that I’ve learned over my years of modeling is that it is wise to use the tool best suited for the job at hand. I have a number of high quality tools and many of them have the label, “Xuron” on the handle.

My latest acquisition is the Xuron Tk 3600 Photo Etch Took Kit. The Xuron webpage featuring the TK 3600 states that this kit was designed for scale model builders working with delicate photo-etch. Is there any other kind of PE? The kit contains three tools for cutting, bending and holding PE parts.

Model 9180ET Professional Photo-Etch Scissor cuts the PE, Model 450 TweezerNose™ Plier holds the PE, and the Model 575 Micro Bending Plier bends it.

Xuron Cutters

Published: January 4th, 2016     
Xuron Cutters
Reviewed by: Dick Montgomery, IPMS# 14003
Company: Xuron

Xuron offers an excellent set of hobby tools, cleverly disguised as ‘Field Service Tools’ for electricians and technicians. This set is presented in a fabric pouch, which has three pockets for the tools, and two additional pockets to store a ruler, a set of files, picks, scribers, and other small hand tools.

Xuron’s description of the product: “The tri-fold pouch includes a Model 410T Micro-Shear® Flush Cutter with a refined tip for access into restricted areas, Model 440 Mini-Scissor for slitting cable jacketing, and the Model 450 Tweezer-Nose pliers for tightening pins, forming connectors or holding wires.”

For the hobbyist it might be more beneficial to identify the tools in this fashion: The Model 440 Mini-Scissor can be used to snip PE parts from the carriers, as well as those tiny plastic parts from their carriers without damage to the parts.

The Model 410T Micro-Shear® Flush Cutter has an angled cutting surface and is an excellent tool for removing parts from carriers without leaving a separation nub on the part.

3D Center Locating Tool Jig

Published: September 23rd, 2015     
3D Center Locating Tool Jig
Reviewed by: Dave Morrissette, IPMS# 33653
Company: UMM-USA

UMM continues to make and issue tools that their owner John Vojtech has developed and used to make his award winning models. The UMM™ 3D Center Locating Tool Jig is one of those tools. What you get is two pieces of aluminum bolted together so that the bottom forms a v-shaped notch and the top forms a straight edge aligning with the point of the notch. The purpose of the tool is simple, find the exact center of a round or square object. This is extremely handy when you need that center for drilling out holes or attached things exactly on center.

I tried the jig on the bottom of a bust which needed to be attached to a base, and I had to drill and insert a pin to insure its stability. I slid the base square to the notched side and drew a line up the straight edge. I then rotated the jig and drew a second line and “X” marks the center. Perfect. Repeat this for the base and drill and pin perfectly. It also works on square parts. The only limitation I see is that my 2” wide base was about as big as it could go but it will work for any part smaller than that and I was using a 1/6 scale figure kit so it was large.

Cutting Mat A3 Size

Published: September 20th, 2015     
Cutting Mat A3 Size
Reviewed by: Pablo Bauleo, IPMS# 46363
Company: Squadron Products

We all need a cutting mat for our hobby area. Not just as a cutting surface, but as a work area and to prevent damaging the table/surface we are working on.

Squadron has released the latest on their tool line with a cutting mat on A3 size, with a 10x15 inch working area. One side is just plain green for general work and cutting, while the other side has a square inch pattern plus angle lines at 30, 45 and 60 degrees.

The surface is made of a self-healing material, meaning that your cuts would “heal-up” (i.e. disappear) and you will have a smooth surface to continue your work. I did a few test cuts -gentle ones, just drawing the blade on the surface- and next morning I couldn’t see any cut or “scar” for what matters.

This cutting mat is likely to last you a long, long time (I would bet at least a decade if you take care of it) plus it will protect your blades and your working surfaces. Get one, you won’t regret it.

Recommended.

I would like to thank Squadron and IPMS/USA for the review sample.

UMM VojTech Hand Sanding Bar XL

Published: September 20th, 2015     
UMM VojTech Hand Sanding Bar XL
Reviewed by: Dave Morrissette, IPMS# 33653
Scale: N/A
Company: UMM-USA

John Vojtech made a big splash at several nationals a while back with his magnificent builds of a B-2 and C-130 to name a few.  To build these models, John actually fabricated some of his own tools and over the years has refined them and is now selling them. This UMM-USA tool is the VojTech Hand Sanding Bar. These bars come in five convenient sizes: Extra Large, Large, Medium, Small, and Fine. Made from polished aluminum and with 6 flat surfaces, these tools are useful in many applications.

The part reviewed here is the extra-large bar. Using it is simplicity itself. Get a piece of the appropriate sandpaper cut a strip the width of the sanding bar or a little less. Wrap the sandpaper around the bar of the side you need. One end of the sanding bar is longer and comes to a sharper taper. The other is wider and not as sharp of a taper. You can also use tape to attach the sandpaper also

Paint Thinner for Enamel Paints

Published: September 14th, 2015     
Paint Thinner for Enamel Paints
Reviewed by: John Noack, IPMS# 23017
Company: Squadron Products

While at this year's National Contest and Convention, Jeff Johnston of MMD-Squadron was kind enough to provide several sample sizes of this new product.  As implied in the name, the thinner is designed to work with all brands and types of enamel paints.  While my paint collection isn't extensive enough to prove this, I did try the product with several brands of paint (Testor's traditional ¼ oz bottle, their 1 oz Model Master, and an old Humbrol tin).  The instructions state to mix a 3 part paint/2 part thinner ratio for gloss colors, and 3/1 for flats.  I tried these ratios for airbrushing and found them to work great.  I typically use Testor's Lacquer Thinner (black can) for much of my enamel and lacquer spraying.  The Squadron product dries a little slower, which may help to level out the paint layers a bit more – or the airbrush gods were smiling on me the day I tried it out.  Who can say <grin>.

When hand painting, I would suggest going a little lighter on the thinner, working up to a ratio that works for you – 3/2 gloss and 3/1 flat both gave me a few coverage issues so I dropped back a little bit on the thinner.

Squadron Super Trio Super Glue Set

Published: September 14th, 2015     
Squadron Super Trio Super Glue Set
Reviewed by: Rob Benson, IPMS# 44038
Company: Squadron Products

Thank you to Squadron Products for providing a new modeling product for field testing. Thank you to the IPMS Reviewer Corps for giving me the opportunity to run the tests. The product performed very well, and I was pleasantly surprised by the glue bottle design.

Squadron has recently added to the new products lines with a set of cyanoacrylate adhesives.  I tested a bundled set of three 0.705 fluid ounce bottles in extra-thin, medium, and extra-thick viscosities. I did not play with chemistry, tensile-strength, shear strength and all of that sort of stuff, largely because cyanaoacrylate is a pretty proven product. I stuck with performance-based opinions in my tests.

Multi-Shape Punch Set and Accessory Packs

Published: September 12th, 2015     
Multi-Shape Punch Set and Accessory Packs
Reviewed by: John Noack, IPMS# 23017
Scale: N/A
Company: UMM-USA

At this year's National Convention in Columbus, master modeler John Vojtech provided us with a number of new product samples from his company UMM-USA.  UMM, Unique Master Models, lives up to its name by offering an extensive variety of tools, aftermarket detailing supplies, decal sets and the like.  (Be sure to peruse John's National Award winning models when you enter the site