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Strengthening weak plastic parts?

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#1 sjordan2


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Posted 05 May 2013 - 10:40 AM

Many kits in 1/16 have fragile, weak suspension parts and door hinges, plus a number of moving parts that don't hold up well to the weight of the model or repeated movement. Several of our members have the tools and skills to reinforce them or replace them with metal parts for things like wheel hub spindles, etc. I don't. Does anyone have any knowledge or experience in dealing with coatings that help, even slightly, to reinforce such parts at breakable points? Has anyone used "Liquid Steel / Liquid Nails?" I suspect that CA might work the same way.

Edited by sjordan2, 05 May 2013 - 11:05 AM.

#2 Ace-Garageguy


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Posted 05 May 2013 - 05:19 PM

Just intuitively, I kind of doubt adhesives like Liquid Nails will do much. They're sticky for adhesion, but don't add any real structural rigidity. Liquid steel MIGHT, if you can apply a nice smooth coat. Dipping the part in an epoxy based product might also help, but I think that until someone comes out with a high-strength epoxy thickened with carbon nanotubes, you're kind of out of luck.

#3 jeffs396


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Posted 05 May 2013 - 05:22 PM

Skip, I'm sure you have sufficient skills to duplicate and/or reinforce some of these spindly parts with brass or aluminum...most suspension parts are easy to replicate...try it! ;)

#4 Edsel-Dan


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Posted 05 May 2013 - 06:00 PM

Best way to re-enforce parts is drill through them and insert wire.


Like you said, some replace those parts with scratch-built metal copies.

Easy to do with some of the Milling machines offered for scale builders,

but if you don't have access to one, or can not afford one, you have to make do.


Liquid Nails is a Panel Adhesive/Carpentry Adhesive (Not intended for Kit assembly.

Might work, but will not add strength like you need.

I have not heard of Liquid Steel.

#5 jaydar


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Posted 06 May 2013 - 04:12 AM

This is a timely thread. I will soon be mounting a side stand on my 1/12 Harley Low Rider. I have great apprehension of a short duration!!