Modeling Products

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

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/Productos.aspx?CCat0=020100&CCat1=020120). 

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.

Perfect Plastic Putty

Published: December 4th, 2013     
Perfect Plastic Putty
Reviewed by: Pablo Bauleo, IPMS# 46363
Company: Deluxe Materials

Deluxe Materials is a company I was not familiar with. It is based out of the Great Britain and it certainly provides quality supplies to the hobbyists in Great Britain and beyond. They have created a water washable, fast drying and low odor filler, that is easy to clean up and work with. I had a drop tank with some holes on it that I wanted to fill. I just applied a bit of the filler with a small spatula and after about one minute of drying time, I used a lightly damp piece of paper towel to clean up the excess filler. You can see yourself the great finish it delivered.

There is an official video on different applications for this filler at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=stLzShlnrEk

It is interesting to notice that among the alternative uses of this filler, it is possible to apply it with a syringe to make weld beads in armor vehicles. I would have never thought of that!

875HT Smart Jet Plus Iwata Compressor – Studio Series

Published: October 30th, 2013     
875HT Smart Jet Plus Iwata Compressor – Studio Series
Reviewed by: Dick Montgomery, IPMS# 14003
Company: Iwata Medea

There are a number of companies that produce air compressors for the artist and hobbyist, and an even larger number that produce larger and more powerful compressors that can be “regulated down” into the “hobby range”. This review focuses on the Iwata IS 875HT Smart Jet Plus Tubular Compressor.

This Iwata-Medea compressor is a top-of-the-line tool that delivers tremendous quality for the price. A comparison of the characteristics of this compressor and the characteristics of any high-quality compressor will show the reader why this compressor is rated so highly by this reviewer.

Flex-I-File Brushes

Published: October 24th, 2013     
Flex-I-File Brushes
Reviewed by: Mike Van Schoonhoven, IPMS# 41627
Company: Flex-I-File

  • Four-brush set – stock # BRF-4P, $26.99
  • Five-brush set – stock # BRUF-5P, $32.99

Flex-I-File is a company that produces many tools for modelers. They are known for their saws, sanding products, and the touch and flow applicator. These brushes are new product that they have released.

These brushes are handmade in Germany. Some real nice features of the brushes are the long, well balanced handle for the comfort of handling, and the triangular handles that prevent them from rolling off your workbench.

For my review, I was provided with the four- and five-brush sets, but the brushes can also be purchased individually from the Flex-I-File website.

So, how do you review a paintbrush? Well, you paint with it! Included in my review photos is a photo of a piece of plastic card that I used each brush on to show off the capabilities of that particular brush.

I highly recommend these brushes. I have always heard that if you want to paint well, you need to buy good brushes. Wel,l these fit the bill.

I want to thank Flex-I-File and IPMS/USA for allowing me the opportunity to review this product.

Masking and Transfer Foils

Published: October 16th, 2013     
Masking and Transfer Foils
Reviewed by: Greg Wise, IPMS# 44378
Company: JH Models

The Product

Described as a highly flexible, softened, transparent gray film suitable for uneven surfaces and producing templates for applying paint by a brush or airbrush with reduced surface tack.

The Working Test

I decided that a current review project was to be the test subject, a 1/72 scale Cobra helicopter. I believe the film should be cut by scoring the film and removing it from its backing. I found cutting the film and backing material together a little fussy, even while using a new #11 X-Acto blade. The film is very pliable and stretches easily. The adhesive tack strength is a couple clicks below Tamiya tape.

I cut the gray film and applied it over a painted (gloss white) surface. I also used the clear film for the tail number block (see photo). Using an airbrush, I first applied yellow paint, followed by the red. I then used a 5/0 size paint brush for the black areas. After removing the film, I found paint bleeding along the panel lines and lifting around curved surfaces, causing under-spray. However, I saw no problems where I used a paint brush.

3D Hand Grab Bender

Published: September 16th, 2013     
3D Hand Grab Bender
Reviewed by: Pablo Bauleo, IPMS# 46363
Company: UMM-USA

Once, I heard that a “modeler can only be as good as his tools”. While I think some modelers can be better than their tools, I know that in my case my tools are the best I can get, which is why I try to get the best tools I can.

This arrow-head shaped tool is extremely handy to create “hand grabs” (for an armor vehicle, an aircraft canopy, or maybe a ship ladder) which will all have the same size and dimension. This tool might find uses in trains and maybe for hydraulic lines in an aircraft, or for internal wiring inside an AFV or a car.

The tool has 28 pre-set lengths, or notches, so you only need to choose which one to use and then simply bend the piece of wire or photo etch to the length you need.

Simply brilliant design. Every single handle will have the same size.

I would recommend this tool for modelers who work with photo etch or scratchbuild parts.

I want to thank UMM-USA and IPMS/USA for the review sample.

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