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Using thread to replicate cable


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Hi, I know I've seen this somewhere but I cannot recall where. I have just built the amusing hobby strabokran and the kit uses a thread as a realistic cable. But I cannot work out what it is made from. I have tried using cotton before but it goes fuzzy when painted over. So I'm wondering if anyone has any hints from experience? Using brass wire makes it too thick, so it must be a cord, but the on supplied is also quite chunky (although obviously flexible) and probably a synthetic fabric. Tamiya also uses cord so I'm guessing it's the same stuff. If I could figure it out I'd buy a roll of it!

 

Anyway thanks in advance! Steve

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I've used thin, multi-strand electrical wire to represent steel cable. Just strip the insulation and twist. You can always reduce the number of strands for a thinner cable.

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Hi Steve

You have two choices for this ............ first ultra fine copper or brass wire ......... these guys do as fine as 35 gauge ....three pieces twisted in a drill will make a very fine cable indeed 

 

https://wireandstuff.co.uk/product-category/copper/

 

Failing that you could try silk string but this looks more like rope than cable but at a pinch could work....again available in different grades....the beauty of silk is no fuzzy fibres.

 

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/2M-Griffin-100-Natural-White-Silk-String-Cord-Thread-Stringing-Pearls-Beads/253497824617?hash=item3b05a5d569:g:siYAAOSw1utarRDC

 

Hope this helps mate

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A past ship modeling technique was to run the thread over a beeswax block and then run the thread over an incandescent light bulb (100W over here). The heat would singe the fibers off and flow the beeswax into the thread, giving it some body. If you want to color the thread, try a fabric dye, such as Rit dye before the waxing operation.

 

For a 1/48 LCM I completed a couple of year ago, I trolled fabric and crafting stores looking for the right color and size thread. I bought several examples and tried them on the model until I got the look and right fit. I applied beeswax and ran the thread over the nozzle of a heat gun to the same effect.

 

HTH

-- 

dnl

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12 hours ago, Stevie2315 said:

Hi, I know I've seen this somewhere but I cannot recall where. I have just built the amusing hobby strabokran and the kit uses a thread as a realistic cable. But I cannot work out what it is made from. I have tried using cotton before but it goes fuzzy when painted over. So I'm wondering if anyone has any hints from experience? Using brass wire makes it too thick, so it must be a cord, but the on supplied is also quite chunky (although obviously flexible) and probably a synthetic fabric. Tamiya also uses cord so I'm guessing it's the same stuff. If I could figure it out I'd buy a roll of it!

 

Anyway thanks in advance! Steve

 

l’ve never tried it, but l’ve heard some people recommend running cotton through PVA glue on one’s fingers. lt’s supposed to slick down the loose fibres.

 

Panda Commander

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1 hour ago, Panda Commander said:

l’ve never tried it, but l’ve heard some people recommend running cotton through PVA glue on one’s fingers. lt’s supposed to slick down the loose fibres.

 

It does. I use thread meant for rigging for ship models and do just that with it. It works a treat. But I wouldn't use it for towing cables. I much prefer strands of copper wire, clamped in the chuck of a drill and then slowly rotated. You can use it for any scale, just changing the number of strands used.

 

John.

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Hi guys, thank you so much for all the advice! I spotted reels of waxed cotton which would avoid the fuzzing, but probably won't take paint.  I tried the twisted wire trick - I did that with my micro Dremel but its speed control isn't activated until it's  already on so it ran out of control before I could stop it! The cable does look spot on though, just got to remember to press stop...

 

It's actually to go on the cable reel underneath the Tamiya FAMO - they do supply a reel of white but the stuff in the Amusing Hobby kit is somehow more realistic and stiffer. If I can get a long enough run of copper wire to braid then I might well go with that instead.

 

But cheers all!

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4 hours ago, Stevie2315 said:

I did that with my micro Dremel but its speed control isn't activated until it's  already on so it ran out of control before I could stop it!

Mine's connected to an old model railways controller, so it will turn very slowly, but you don't need to turn it on. Just anchor one end of the wire to something, and the other end in the chuck and then rotate it by hand. Simples!

 

John.

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Oh, I didn't think of that (have power tool, must use syndrome). I'll jam one end into the desk vice and turn it with my good old hand drill. you're right, so simples!

 

Steve

 

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For more control you can simply twist the cable by hand, it is usually short. It takes about ten minutes. To make it smoother, I smooth it out by rolling it on a cutting mat, pressed down with a wooden ruler. Not necessarily a wooden ruler, fit any flat object.
A very suitable wire was from the old headphones cable, a lot of wires of 0.1mm each

 

Vytautas

Edited by vytautas
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