Modeling Products

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

Gator Glue

Published: July 13th, 2014     
Gator Glue
Reviewed by: Pablo Bauleo, IPMS# 46363
Scale: n/a
Company: Gator Masks

Gator Masks had a happy accident. Gator glue ordered the wrong products when planning to make a batch of their regular “Gator Grip” glue and accidently made a thinner product, which like the original glue.  Gator glue is water based and non-toxic.  After testing the new thinner product, they decided to add this “happy accident” to the catalog as the “Thin Blend” version of the Gator glue. This product is called “a perfect blend for Photo Etch”.

So I tried the thinner Gator glue with some PE seatbelts and a scrap piece of clear plastic and this is what I’ve discovered:

The water based aspect of this glue is very nice as if you have a bit of glue that oozes out, you can clean it with a Q-tip and water. The glue also dries virtually flat, which is a big contrast to regular superglue.  The picture shows a smear of glue (my own fault) before I hit it with a flat coat. The glue has a surface tension higher than water (i.e, it would form a small ‘drop’ at the end of a toothpick), which is useful if you want to simulate an insulator in an airplane rigging. I’ve also tested it on a clear part and there was no fogging.

Landing Gear Weathering and Wash Materials

Published: July 7th, 2014     
Landing Gear Weathering and Wash Materials
Reviewed by: Dick Montgomery, IPMS# 14003
Company: AK Interactive

AK Interactive offers a wide variety of items for the modeler, from paint and weathering sets and books, to model kits. The website is easy to navigate and offers a button to provide an “English” translation. Another button offers a currency exchange calculate from Euros (the posted pricing) to US dollars.

AK is on Facebook and has a You-Tube presence. To quote the AK You-Tube link, “AK's Official Youtube Channel (will) show Advanced Techniques, Tutorials, Tips & Tricks and many more things. Currently working on it :-)”

AK provided IPMS-USA their Aircraft Landing Gear Weathering Set, AK 2030, to review and I was pleased to take on this review. The AK 2030 set contains 3 bottles of “wash and weathering” liquids.

Micro Mitre Box

Published: June 7th, 2014     
Micro Mitre Box
Reviewed by: Steve Collins, IPMS# 33811
Company: UMM-USA

The UMM Micro Mitre Box is a useful little tool if you’re scratchbuilding or adding detail to a model.  Made of aluminum, it’s designed for cutting wood, metal, or plastic using their JLC razor saw.  As an aside, it also works with other brands of razor saw, so long as they’re not over .12” thickness.  This version of their box allows cuts at 45°, 60°, and 90°.  They have recently released an updated version of the box (Micro Mitre Box II) which has a brass rule imbedded in the box that is marked in 1mm increments.  There is an adjustable stop device that is screw-mounted in the bottom of the box.  It has a flat end and a slanted end to be used to hold the material in place.  There are several screw holes to allow the stop to be almost infinitely adjusted for length.

I have used the box to cut round, square, and flat plastic stock, as well as .100” I-beam stock with no difficulties.  With the narrower slots for the saw, the cuts are precise and smooth.  It’s certainly a recommended tool! 

Thanks to UMM-USA for providing the sample and to IPMS/USA for the opportunity to review it.

Dropper (Glue Applicator)

Published: May 20th, 2014     
Dropper (Glue Applicator)
Reviewed by: Pablo Bauleo, IPMS# 46363
Company: Eduard

Eduard Models is releasing some very useful tools for the modelers, like this glue applicator, dropper or kapátko (probably in Czech as it is written in the package).

This photoetch fret has a total of 10 applicators. The “jaws” in the applicator comes in two sizes, small and smaller glue drop. The two sizes of drops make this tool useful for different scales or different applications. Each applicator has its own engraved grip for better handling.

I can see this tool being extremely useful while working with photoetch parts (from Eduard, what else!) and it would prevent that ‘blob’ of superglue that we all have dealt with in our builds.

Highly recommended.

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

Shapes Templates

Published: May 18th, 2014     
Shapes Templates
Reviewed by: Pablo Bauleo, IPMS# 46363
Scale: N/A
Company: Eduard

Eduard Models is releasing some very useful tools for the modelers, like this series of templates.

The first set is “Circle and Oval”, SKU: 00027 with a total of 38 circular templates ranging from 0.8 to 6.2 mm. This set also has a fret with 34 oval templates, with sizes ranging from 1.8x1mm to 5.8x10.2 mm.

The next set is “Oblongs and Squares”, SKU: 00028 with 14 templates for each geometry. Their dimension ranges from 3.5 to 5 mm. The Oblongs are ‘rectangles’ with rounded corners.

Finally the last set is “Oblongs”, SKU: 00029 with an amazing total of 52 templates ranging from 0.6 mm to 4 mm.

Tweezers - Flat Tip and Crossed Type

Published: March 3rd, 2014     
Tweezers - Flat Tip and Crossed Type
Reviewed by: Dick Montgomery, IPMS# 14003
Company: Plusmodel

Good tools make modeling easier, and every modeler needs several types of tweezers and the toolbox. Plusmodel is now offering tweezers designed for the modeler.

Flat Tip tweezers are very useful tools when handling plastic bits and decals. The key factor with Flat Tip tweezers is that the jaws are parallel and “meet” when closed without any overhang or gap between the jaws. We’ve all seen “inexpensive” flat tip tweezers that, from the get-go, display a gap. The Plusmodel Flat Tip Tweezers, # 026, come out of the package with a perfect “bite”. These tweezers close and grip well.

Crossed Tweezers are closed “at rest” and open when squeezed. Crossed Tweezers are excellent tools used to grip and hold small parts. The Plusmodel Crossed Type Tweezers, #021 has pointed tips (some Crossed Tweezers are engineered with flat tips) and can pick up very small items, holding them firmly but gently.

Pin Flow Glue Applicator

Published: February 26th, 2014     
Pin Flow Glue Applicator
Reviewed by: Dick Montgomery,, IPMS# 14003
Company: Deluxe Materials

There are many glues and glue dispensing devices on the market. There are dispensers that brush on the glue, tubes that squeeze out the glue like toothpaste, and squeeze bottles that drip the adhesive out one drop at a time. But there are few dispensing devices that allow for very precise application in a controlled manner, especially within a confined location.

The Deluxe Pin Flow-Solvent Glue Dispenser is a precision glue-delivery tool. As Deluxe describes this device, it is “specially designed for the precise control of liquid solvent plastic adhesives”, and the key word is “precise”.  The tool is safely stored in a plastic sleeve, and the application needle is protected by a pink plastic cap.

The applicator is a glass pipette, about 5 ½ inches in length, fitted on the “business” end of the pipette with a very small metal “needle” about ¾ inches in length.

One can use any liquid glue with the Deluxe tool, but be aware that Deluxe offers its own brand of liquid glue, Plastic Magic, so if you are a purist, be sure to purchase some Deluxe Plastic Magic along with the Deluxe Pin Flow Dispenser.

AK Interactive Primer and Thinner (60 ml bottles)

Published: February 26th, 2014     
AK Interactive Primer and Thinner (60 ml bottles)
Reviewed by: Pablo Bauleo, IPMS# 46364
Scale: n/a
Company: AK Interactive

Note on MSRP:  Primer is $10.85, Thinner is $8.95.

AK Interactive is clearly one of the specialty brands in the world of modelling. From high quality finishing and weathering products to high quality primers, they are all about “the perfect finish” for your model.

The grey primer is an excellent all-round primer, which provides a smooth coverage to plastic parts and it airbrushes really well. Their thinner, to be used sparingly from my own experience as I had a few runs, improves airbrushing quality and it can be used to thin paints from other brands, like Tamiya, Vallejo or Lifecolor paints. I’ve personally tried with Tamiya and it thinned and improved the flow of the paint like a charm.

A killer paint job starts with a good surface and a good surface finish is prepared for painting by the use of a good primer. Give these products a try and you won’t be disappointed. I know I will be using them in a regular basis.

Recommended to modelers of all skill levels.

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

AK Interactive Dark Steel Pigment

Published: February 25th, 2014     
AK Interactive Dark Steel Pigment
Reviewed by: Pablo Bauleo, IPMS# 46364
Company: AK Interactive

AK Interactive has a selected set of pigments (sold individually) known as the “AK Pigment Colors. There are 9 colors and they are the most used pigment shades for weathering models.

You still can get some other specific shade for that special project you have in your workbench, but most of the time, those 9 colors would suffice. (You can see the full list at http://www.ak-interactive.com/ecomm/?acc=Catalog&IDCat=17&idc=3). 

This series of colors are bottled in larger (35 ml) flip-top bottles with the expectation of being used as “regular” weathering supplies.

One of them is the “dark steel” pigment, which will find its way into many vehicles, armor, ships and aircraft workbench. It is very finely grinded and it can be applied with an old paintbrush.

You can see the effect of a light application of ‘dark steel’ to the cannon barrels of a Me-262. It just took me 30 sec to enhance the appearance of the model.

Pigments are easy to apply (and remove if you don’t like them) that even beginners can use them without a problem. Highly recommended to modelers of all skill levels.

Create and Shape

Published: December 11th, 2013     
Create and Shape
Reviewed by: Greg Wise, IPMS# 44378
Scale: NA
Company: Deluxe Materials

The Product

According to the manufacturer this stuff is a lightweight, non-shrinking scenic material for creating and casting realistic diorama groundwork. It dries without cracking, bonds to wood, plaster, plastic, foam and can be cut, sawn and filed to shape when dry without crumbling. There is a Youtube Demo - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Cc-1xuL2mI&feature=youtu.be

The Test

After carefully viewing the on line you-tube video I began by preparing an 8X10 oval basswood base. I then tried to roll the product into log shapes and let dry overnight. I believe my sample jar was a little dehydrated, as you can see in the photos my success rate was about 70%. I’m sure this could have been avoided by simply adding a little water. I found out later while experimenting that the product requires very little water as it melts quickly with just a few drops.

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