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Whats needed to build from a plan

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Mark R22/06/2010 19:35:10
279 forum posts
44 photos
Hi All,  ok i will start off by saying yes i am a complete ARTF man, mainly due to time constraints and also space!
Really would like to start building again from plans, used to build all my stuff as a kid from plans, no ARTF back in the dark ages.  Dont know if this has been covered before as i tried to search site, but to no avail.
So what am i looking for?  Well what bits n bobs will i need to help me build from plan?  Where is a good place to get said items.  Not looking for an exhaustive list, but the general bits that are needed to make a start and i can get any 'extras' as i go along.
Cheers in advance y'all
Bruce Richards22/06/2010 20:57:35
1849 forum posts
Well thats a big question. I will start with some major items.
1. A building board. I made mine from a large flat sheet of plywood coved with cork tiles. Others hove used kitchen work top with plaster board on. Its important to have a top that you con push pins into.
2. A selection of glues. Cyno, PVA or Alphatic, Epoxy to name a few. Get from Diy shops, model shops, online, and shows.

3. Scalpel and lots of new blades
4. Razor saw
5. Davids Plane/ razor plane.
6, Pins, masking tape.
Either get them all online or visit one of the many shows around the country. Wings and Wheels this weekend would be a good choice.
Mark R22/06/2010 21:07:16
279 forum posts
44 photos
Cheers Bruce, have got the basics, but at moment decent building board is not one of them.  Clamps?  I see some use metal ones some wooden, is there any great difference apart from being possibly more careful with the metal ones, due to 'bruising'/denting the wood.
Biggles' Elder Brother - Moderator22/06/2010 21:26:00
15748 forum posts
1460 photos
 I have a wide selection of clamps that have built up over time. First of all don't ignore the humble elastic band - you can do a lot with a bag of mixed size lasie bands! One type of clamp I find very useful is a 6-7 inch sash clamp with rubber jaws and sort of "trigger" mechanism that tightens them. I have half a dozen of them. If you look on my Sopwith build blog you'll see them cropping up in loads of the pictures.
Go to SLEC's website - lots of good stuff there. Two items I would particularly recommend are firstly the fuselage jig. Costs about £20, worth every penny - you'll never build a banana again! Secondly get a balsa stripper - making your own strip balsa from sheet will save you a fortune. It'll pay for itself in one model.
You need a good steel rule and pair of metal dividers are very handy for taking measurements off plans.
A Dremel - or something similar and a set of drills from 0.3mm up to 4mm. I also use a pin vice - dirt cheap and very handy for drilling small holes when you can't be bothered getting the Dremel out the box!
For a building board I'm similar to bruce - I use a 6x3 Melamine faced chipboard sheet fixed on an old desk. The sheet is faced with a double thickness of cork tiles.
A self healing cutting mat is handy and you'll need a small vice and a hacksaw for cutting piano wire and brass tube etc. A soldering iron is needed sometimes - but you might already have one.
Set of jewellers screwdrivers and a set of ordinary screw drivers. Small adjustable spanner.
Later on a set of taps and dies are really handy.
You'll probably have a lot of this - and you don't need it all on day one!
One last thing - a small scroll saw - or access to a laser cutting company! - will take the druge out of cutting wing ribs!
Now we've done all the boring stuff on to things much more exciting! What are you planning to build?
Mark R22/06/2010 21:32:21
279 forum posts
44 photos
Hi Bruce......thanks for the to what i am going to build, not sure......just got the 'itch' to build properly.  Love my a Spit and P51 already, sooooo not sure what to get.  Alas wont be for a wee bit as i dont have a suitable sized place, so will have time to build up bits n bobs.  Do like the look of some of the stuff in My Hobby store, but not if i should go basic to start with and build up from there.
Myron Beaumont22/06/2010 21:50:01
5797 forum posts
51 photos
Masking Tape ! Multi- purpose stuff for just about anything you can think of when it comes to holding bits together. Even 'er indoors will find it useful (don't get the cheap stuff ,it sticks itself together after a while and doesn't come off the reel in one long strip )

Edited By Myron Beaumont on 22/06/2010 21:52:58

Eamonn Fahey23/06/2010 10:24:33
529 forum posts
58 photos
Don't forget Sandpaper!
In my early modeling days I built models using only half a razor blade and sandpaper. As the years have passed I have accuired all of the mentioned tools and more but I could not build without a Cork Block and various grades of sandpaper.
Biggles' Elder Brother - Moderator23/06/2010 10:37:47
15748 forum posts
1460 photos
Good point Eamonn. The cork sanding block is particularly important to be able to control the material removal better.
Barrie Dav 223/06/2010 11:49:15
1012 forum posts
14 photos
One or two Permagrit files, whilst expensive, will save you a lot of elbow grease and time and they seem to last forever. I find the 280mm sanding block particularly useful.  
Make a small sanding jig to keep edges nice and square to ensure good joints when glueing.
I usually get a copy of the original plan made and use that for the building, keeping the original undamaged.  Cover the working copy with spare backing film from solarfilm,  profilm etc.  It will still get covered with pin pricks and cuts but should be clear of glue.

Edited By Barrie Dav 2 on 23/06/2010 11:54:42

Edited By Barrie Dav 2 on 23/06/2010 11:55:15

Mark R23/06/2010 12:18:47
279 forum posts
44 photos
Cheers Guys for all the help, very much appreciated Will start a shopping list and ask Santa, Easter Bunny and any other mythical beast (not that Santa or Easter Bunny doesnt exist you understand) to contribute.
Thanks again Folks

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