help getting started

Discussion in 'Aircraft & Aviation' started by Nothing, Jan 2, 2008.

  1. Nothing

    Nothing Longtime Member

    i am getting ready to start a comercial grade kit for the fiest time, and had 2 questions. 1) the internal formers are on regular thickness paper. are they supposed to be glued to card stock? and 2) if the kit does not have a transparent canopy template, how does one go about making a correct shaped canapy?

    the instructions are all in polish so i cant read them.
  2. bfam4t6

    bfam4t6 Member

    Generally the formers are glued to 1mm cardboard. Some kits will require .5mm, 1mm and 2mm. Even if you don't speak polish, these markings should be easily found somewhere in the instructions. Generally * would denote 1mm cardboard, unless the kit specifies that * denotes .5mm in which case ** would likely denote 1mm. I've only noticed Halinski kits that use something other than standard 1mm. If you don't want to pay for cardboard from an online card model shop you can either look around the house for cereal boxes and such, or go to a kinkos or hobby store and get some thick paper. Then stack laminate the paper with a spray adhesive until it's the correct thickness. Make sure you use use something like Elmers or 3M spray adhesive, otherwise the paper will curl up and warp.

    As for canopies, I try to order a premade one. You'll have to shop around. Modellbau Shop moduni carries quite a few. paper model shop breyer horse at has some. Digital Paper Models, Card Models, Paper Models - has some. Otherwise your best bet is to make a homemade vacform machine and create a mold out of clay or something else that's hard. Then you'll have to find some plastic or go to a hobby shop and buy some. Through trial and error you can make your own vacform canopy from scratch.
  3. col. kurtz

    col. kurtz Member

  4. jaffro

    jaffro Long term member

    there's a couple of vacform tutorials around these forums somewhere, you can also find some decent vacform tutorials on youtube.

    See if this is any help to you...

    It's a list of polish translations directly related to card model instructions, you should be able to get by with just a few words, cos instructions are pretty repetitive.
  5. Nothing

    Nothing Longtime Member

    with a framed cockpit like the cat,(great work by the way!) i would feel comfortable with. my fright comes from the complex no frame canopy like that of the f-16.
  6. cgutzmer

    cgutzmer Guest

    there are a couple vacuform tutorials in the downloads area....

    as to the formers its easy to figure the thickness. They usually use slots to attach together. measure the slots that they slide into and you will have your needed total thickness. I find that on the halinksi I am working on it called for 1mm stock to laminate but .8mm was a much better fit.
  7. col. kurtz

    col. kurtz Member

    nothing send me a copy odf just the cockpit and ill have a go with transparancy i think i know i way to do it........ :thumb:
  8. col. kurtz

    col. kurtz Member

    sorry just the canopy :thumb:
  9. Nothing

    Nothing Longtime Member

    thats the thing. there is no canopy template. just the bottom frame. heres a head on view of the canopy. none of the models have the template for the "glass".
    44a is the bottom rail for it.

    if i had the glass template i could cast a resin form.
  10. Nothing

    Nothing Longtime Member

    ok. im sorry. i found the templates. im in buisness. i must admit to a high degree of intimidation on these, so i think i just panicked when i didnt see it right off. thanks for the offer to help. i know i must look really stupid right about now. i sure feel like it!
  11. dansls1

    dansls1 Member

    A hint somebody gave me is to look at the lightbulb / nightlight section of your local store. Find something close, shape the paper templates into shape, then cut out the plastic from the packaging in the right shape. Even if you don't get it 100%, you can leave the canopy in the open position and if it's close it'll look good.
  12. Lex

    Lex Dollmaker

    I just tried vacforming a canopy for the first time today, and the finished canopy comes with a nasty burn on the hand...... I suggest avoid vacforming if at all possible...
  13. exzealot

    exzealot Member


    I am no expert on paper modeling, but I have been fairly successful at making canopies using birthday candles and clear plastic. Take a look at the build thread for the GPM Me262 Schwalbe. In that thread, I described my method with pictures. The forming is easy; carving the wooden form is more time-consuming but certainly within the skillset of 99% of the population. I know this sounds crazy, but then again, we build models from paper!


    NULLMOON Member

    dont use waterbased clays they shrink use fimo theres a thread somewere about that i started on the subject a while ago:mrgreen:
  15. JustForFun

    JustForFun Member

    Vaccuforming while it produces some nice canopies, intimidates me too.

    Another modeler on this forum (Gerardo) suggested cutting out the tranparaency(inkjet compatible overhead transparency), appling transparent tape to the bottom of the canopy to hold the shape. Once this is done, get oven mitts or tongs (something you can hold the canopy over a flame (gas stove). Hold it over the flame about 12-16 inches above the flame for about 20-30 seconds and the canopy should gradually take and hold the shape you want. If not, just hold it over th flame some more. Just don't burn your self. sign1 Check out the gallery of the Modelart P-51's and you can see for yourself how they turned out.
    Good luck!
  16. Nothing

    Nothing Longtime Member

    thanks guys for all the tips and info. im starting to feel better about tackeling one of soon as i finish my current project i beleive i will start with my f-16. i might start a build thread so you guys can seewhat im doing wrong and help guide me in the right direction.
  17. JustForFun

    JustForFun Member

    If I may ask, what publisher makes your F-16 model? I recently purchased the new P-51D from Halinski (my first) and the instructions are a little intimidating. Is there a manufacturer that you would recommend that is a little easier? I'm comfortable with the ModelArt models so far and don't think I've gotten enough courage to cut into the Halinski model yet.
  18. dansls1

    dansls1 Member

    I've used layers of card stock to get the correct thickness for formers. It's easier to cut than cardboard. It has some flex to it - but so long as you are careful when gluing bits together it shouldn't be an issue.
    The one thing I found is that I didn't take the thickness of the glue into consideration, so while my 4 sheets of card stock at 0.22mm each and 1 sheet of Halinski formers at .1mm should have given a thickness of 0.98mm, I actually got 1.1mm thick formers.
  19. Nothing

    Nothing Longtime Member

    my f-16 is a halinski and yes im intimidated by the instructions as well. i have a modelik super hornet that has good inst. diagrams, and a gpm f-15 that has some decent enough diagrams. the halinski ones although intimidating, ill have to really take my time on.
  20. dansls1

    dansls1 Member

    I just started cutting on my first Halinski right before Christmas. Sure there's a lot of parts, but if you look at the build threads here and at other forums, you hardly ever see anybody having any issues with the builds. There's a lot of parts, but they always seem to fit together well.
    And so long as you are building one of the newer kits, worst case is you have to order another copy, right ;)

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