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Showing results for tags 'vacuum form'.
I have for the last few years been thinking of and experimenting with the new possibilities that technology brings us. We are now able to design a model with a CAD program (with relative ease) and then use CNC routers and 3D printers to turn out the parts. However, as with all scratch building it is quite time consuming. That is why I thought I would post here and see if any skilled scratch builder(s) would be interested in a joint effort. I am fairly competent in a free CAD program called Blender, I own a CNC mill and 3D printing is readily available online. I would create the computer model, CNC mill and vacuum form large parts. Smaller parts would be 3D printed online (shapeways, imaterialise). I will then send the parts your way and your task would be to build the actual model! Some parts will also have to be scratch built. We should of course document our progress here at the forum. We could go super accurate and detailed or just try the actual concept. So I am hoping this will interest some of you. This will be a great opportunity to build an unusual aircraft or at a particular scale (no point doing it if we can just pick up the airfix box). Let me know what you think! What aircraft would be fun to make? I will be up for any aircraft as long as we can find decent references to work from. As a bit of inspiration I have posted two pics of a Swedish Saab J21A that I have been playing with in my CAD program.
I recently bought, sight unseen, a Fonderie Miniatures 1/48 Halifax kit. The kit came shrink wrapped so I was fairly confident it would be complete but worried about the condition of the vac-form clear parts as I remember there were damage issues when the kit first came out. The kit provides duplicates of all the transparencies so I hoped at least one of each part would be usable. Sure enough, one of the tail turret transparencies was somewhat crushed as were both of the clear nose parts. One of the nose transparencies also had white stress marks in the plastic. Then I remembered something about plastic having memory. If you heat it up it will return to its original shape. With nothing to lose I heated some water to just below boiling and dipped the damaged tail turret in briefly, not even for a second. It looked better so I did a couple more quick dips and pretty soon it looked as good as the undamaged one. I did the same with the the two nose transparencies and both of them were quickly back in shape and the white stress marks disappeared as well. The key is to get the water hot enough and to do quick dips. I was actually surprised how good the parts looked after I was done; you can’t tell that they had been partially crushed. They really were unusable when I started. There are probably limits to how much damage is recoverable using this method, but if you don’t have an alternative to replace a damaged vac-form clear part this is worth a try.