Rolling Masts

Discussion in 'Tips, Tutorials & Tools' started by bwallaw, Mar 20, 2004.

  1. bwallaw

    bwallaw Member

    I'm at the point where I am rolling the masts for my Ambrose Lightship.

    It's my first go at rolling a tube in such a small diameter (about 2+ mm) and have had poor results. I have tried rolling around very narrow sections of brass tubing but I have not been able to maintain the desired diameter for the paper tube. They do not come out very smooth either.

    Any tips from the vast pool of experience out there? :?
  2. wunwinglow

    wunwinglow Active Member


    I cheat and use wooden dowel, kebab skewers, etc!

    No help at all, I'm sorry..... :lol:

  3. RichBohlman

    RichBohlman Railroad Card Modaler

    Re: Masts

    I also use something other then paper - Cheating Also!

    BUT stronger and longer lasting.
  4. Gil

    Gil Active Member


    Use multiple layers of a thinner stock such as 24# copy paper or go purchase a package of bamboo cooking skewers (purchase them in any event as they will become an irreplaceable asset in card modeling). Use tapered cuts to achieve the "boom" effect desired.

    Best regards, Gil
  5. barry

    barry Active Member


    Use thin paper slighty oversize on one side (it's a tab) start rolling on a larger diameter rod until you get the first curve in keep rolling on smaller rods until the overlap disappears under the opposite side of the mast. Glue the tab strip and leave the rod in so you can press the join together.

    Rolling tapered masts is a lot harder, roll the tube on the palm of your hand the same as for rolling a cone, again start with an oversize rod.

    I find doing it this way stops me putting a damn great crease in the tube, I did the masts and gun barrels for the "Graf Spee" this way and the other thing is try and hide the glued edge if you can.

    Anyway we all cheat

  6. bwallaw

    bwallaw Member

    Thanks. Sounds like I'm on the right track as far as technique goes... just need a little work on execution. :( The skewer is a tempting idea, but I guess I'd like to try the paper method for my first model. The skewers are at the ready though just in case.

    Looks like tapered masts are a challenge for future models. The Ambrose masts aren't tapered, so something to look forward to.

    An interesting thing about the Ambrose masts is it appears that you should fold the piece double and THEN roll it. This makes rolling a lot more difficult. I decided not to do that.

  7. Gil

    Gil Active Member

    Hi Bill,

    Clarification: I meant roll it out of multiple layers of thin paper. I've posted a formula in the Oberursel section which will help you to plug in some numbers to derive a solution.

    Best regards, Gil
  8. Peter H

    Peter H Member

    I'm with the thin paper only rolling method.

    A good technique to master as it is relevant for gun barrels as well.
  9. Patman

    Patman New Member

    I had the same challenge recently, building spokes for a model wheel, and this is how I solved it. I form or wrap the paper over a cylindrical rod I picked some up recently at a local hobby shop. I purchased diameters from .250 inch down to .062 diameter (1/4 inch to 1/16 inch) or (6.35 mm to 1.57 mm). I start rolling the paper over the largest diameter. I then wrapped the same piece around the next smaller diameter. Do this all the way to the smallest diameter rod. The paper starts to hold a cylindrical form when its rolled tight and 2 layers thick. The smallest diameter I have sucessfully rolled has been 3/32 inch (.093" or 2.36 mm). I glue the finish edge with Locktite Quicktite Super Glue Gel. Cyanacrolate gels are awesome for paper modeling.
  10. Jim Nunn

    Jim Nunn Member

    If you just have to use paper (I would use wood) try this. I was watching my wife make some candy suckers and noticed the sticks she was using. They are about 6 inches (15 cm) long and are 0.158 in (4mm) in diameter. Use a knife to slit the paper along the length of the stick. You can then unroll the paper to any diameter you need. I have experimented and produced a 4 in long rod 1mm in diameter. You can then use this as the base for the paper rod/mast and glue the printed outer skin on the paper rod.

    My wife purchases the candy sticks from a local kitchen/candy supply shop in 100 lots and they cost around a $1.00 per hundred.

    If you want to see some photos let me know.

    Jim Nunn
  11. J.L.

    J.L. Member

    Using the work 'cheat' I think misses the mark when it comes to enjoying the craft. You should not have to apologize or excuse yourself for using a technique that works for you and produces pleasing results. Just my view.

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