Transparent surfaces

Discussion in 'Tips, Tutorials & Tools' started by Arjun, Dec 6, 2006.

  1. Arjun

    Arjun Member

    How do you create transparent surfaces on paper models? There are these plastic sheets, but I don't know with what to cut them or how to stick them.
  2. cgutzmer

    cgutzmer Guest

    Yep, thats what you need to use. I used white glue on my first attempt to glue it and not so good..... I think you need to use ca glue or something similar.
  3. 46rob

    46rob Member

    Testor's makes a special glue, for transparent plastic--that works very well. As a bonus: you can actually create a film of it across small openings (around 1/4 inch) using a toothpick to drag the glue from the edges. Dries crystal clear. ..a favorite of model railroaders to make windows in small structures. Find it at any good hobby shop. CA tends to cloud the plastic, white glue won't penetrate to firmly adhere. Plastic cement dissolves the thin plastic...but doesn't stick well to card.
  4. cgutzmer

    cgutzmer Guest

    Awesome - thanks! In time for the xmas list :)
  5. Jim Nunn

    Jim Nunn Member

    I use thick CA glue for plastic or metal to paper bonding. Rob is correct in that CA does cloud clear plastic so you need to have the plastic over lap the paper part so that you will have a hidden edge to apply the CA glue.

    As for cutting the clear plastic I use is about the same thickness as 67 lb card stock (about 8 mils) so the same techniques you use with paper will work on the thin plastic. The clear plastic sheets that are used for printing overhead slides in Laser printers is excellent for making clear parts.

    Jim Nunn
  6. Bernhard

    Bernhard Member

    Another way to mount plastic sheet to paper is to use double-stick tape.

    Here is how it works:

    First, stick the tape to the back of the card part with the window. Make sure the surface you cover with the tape is larger than the window. At this time leave the backing of the tape on (in other words, don't expose the other sticky side of the tape yet).

    Then, flip the part over and cut out the opening for the window. Cut through all three layers: the card, the tape and its backing. Discard the cut-out.

    Now, flip the part over again and remove the backing from the tape. Place the transparent sheet over the window opening and rub it down onto the tape.

    Done! Very clean, very durable!


  7. paper warrior

    paper warrior Member

    I just use cthat elmer's gel glue stuff and wipe the excess off, and my scalple to cut.
  8. Bluenoser

    Bluenoser Member

    I use the two part 5 minute epoxy. It dries clear and won't bother the paper.
  9. k5083

    k5083 Member

    I use variations of two of the techniques described.

    My shortcut to Bernhard's method is that I sometimes print paper canopy frames directly onto self-adhesive stickly label stock. You can get sheets from the office supply stores that are whole-sheet labels, i.e., they aren't cut into little squares for mailing labels. Just print on the sticker, peel and stick to the clear part.

    For joining clear plastic to paper without a frame, I use "foam glue" available at craft stores. It's basically very thick and tacky white glue, probably not unlike the special Testors product but a lot cheaper. It doesn't truly bond like a solvent would, but it's non-fogging, non-toxic, and usually holds well enough.

  10. mOONwOKA

    mOONwOKA Member

    Well, i do agree that CA does cloud transparent film. And that's exactly what happened with my S-199, when i superglued paper canopy frame to film. I was ready to give up on it. But i remembered having acrylic Tamiya X-22 glosscote. Guess what - it worked even better than i expected. I have heard, that X-22 in fact has the same effect on clear parts as famous Johnsons floor polish. Only difference is the price ;)
  11. cdavenport

    cdavenport Member

    Tips from an IPMSer:

    Using CA- must use alcohol or other non-solvent degreaser to remove any residue left on the clear plastic as a result of handling. Just like they show on CSI, it's the moisture on the plastic that fogs the plastic. Clean that away and CA is a great technique

    The stuff Testor's sells used to be marketed by Microscale as Micro-Clear. You can make it yourself. Mix Elmer's with rubbing alcohol and stir well. You are looking for a consistency just slightly less viscous than room temperature Elmer's white. Experiment for best results.

    Cellophane is great for flat and non-compound curved clear panels.

    That tip using double-sided tape is a keeper, too.
  12. jaffro

    jaffro Long term member

    I just finished my first laminated windscreen for a car... I used the clear plastic cover of a document ring binder thing and glued the card "frames" to either side of this with revell plastic model cement. I found the best way to ensure a good bond was to first soak the section of card to be glued in a thin layer of the glue then another layer after that dried to actually fix it to the palstic. It dries clear and didn't discolour my windscreen, but my clumsy fingers managed to make a few smudges which I'm not sure i want to try to remove in case i just make things worse :D

    NULLMOON Member

    i use animation cell and bostick-evostick as it can be applied to surfaces will remain tacky long enogh to apply the film will not damage and can be rubbed off while tacky

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