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  • Birthday 12/03/1956

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    Port Orchard, WA
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    Skip Ragsdale

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  1. I’d third the simple green + dishwashing detergent soak overnIght, gets in all the nooks and crannies to allow mechanical means of popping the assemblies apart. Three methods I use, one has already been mentioned, the photo etch blades work. Really well. Second method is a dental cement spatula that I thinned down to about half its original thickness so it slides under things to allow a gentle pry. Third is a dental explorer, the needle like pick that the dental hygienist uses to drive you nuts as they are cleaning your teeth. An explorer can be used to pick at and pry on the ancient glue puddles, gently working them loose. I tried tossing a gluebomb into my ultrasonic cleaner hoping it would break the glue joints loose did nothing, but I did get a really clean gluebomb! The ultrasonic cleaner will take off chrome in under ten minutes in most cases, it also weakens the lacquer undercoating so it can be wire brushed off (that’s using the Harbor Freight ultrasonic cleaner mix). Ultrasonic cleaner also works great to clean up the mold release from resin cast parts and bodies, as long as the heat is kept around 50 - 70degrees F. I normally run resin parts in the ut cleaner for 5 - 10 minutes, I haven’t had any paint issues with any resin since I started using this method. I’ve also found that using a strong mix of the HF Ultrasonic cleaning mix will loosen and take off most enamel, lacquer, and acrylic paints in about an hour or so. Haven’t used purple power yet, as the HF cleaner is similar, the ultrasonic cleaner helps remove the paint and chrome by cavitation. Acrylic paint is no match for the ut cleaner, it just shreds it off completely in a little under 5 minutes! To demonstrate the effect of cavitation, put a sealed foil packet in the ut cleaner and the cavitation will erode right through the foil, it looks like it’s been dipped in acid [experiment right out of first year materials Engineering!]. Thankfully the cavitation has zero effect on styrene, so it’s perfect for dechroming. The vat on my ut cleaner holds about half a gallon and is large enough to hold a car body or two.
  2. The “Parts Box” in Australia makes a wire reinforced true straight axle, plus some I-beam and tube dropped axles with the “Ford-Style” transverse spring. I think they have an eBay store as well. The only downside is shipping charges, so it pays to make a bigger order, buying ahead. If I remember right they also have a shipping and handling charge which is why I always do a bigger order.
  3. Createx and other acrylic topcoats do not chemically bond with the primer (or plastic) basecoats, think of it as a "vinyl wrap" of sorts. Acrylic paints adhere to the basecoat by basically "shrinking" onto a slick surface, primer/plastic by evaporating and "shrinking" onto the surface. If that surface is too smooth, thinned, sprayed acrylic paint can actually bead up on the smooth surface leading to some really killer orange peel! Think of using acrylic glue, like Elmer's Glue-All (white school glue), if you place it onto styrene/plastic/primer or another slick surface, it will sit there and evaporate until its dry to the touch. Yet you can pick at the edges and peel the whole pool of glue off of the surface, the side "mating" to the body will be as smooth as the surface it was applied. Now try to give it some tooth to adhere to the surface, by sanding and you will notice bits of primer come off with the glue blob. The acrylic glue is pretty much a "really thick version of the acrylic paint", it needs tooth to adhere to the surface to stick. You are providing that mechanical bond by sanding the surface for the acrylics in the paint to "mechanically' attach to, they will never bond because there is no chemical melting and bonding of the topcoat on primer. Acrylic paints thinned and shot through an airbrush need a good toothy surface for a good mechanical bond, primer provides a good part of that, plus sanding the primed surface. Acrylic paints shot through an airbrush will also show sanding scratches if you use too heavy of a grit when scuffing the surface. I've used Red Scotchbrite pads or 800 - 1000 grit sandpapers with good luck, showing no sanding scratches and good mechanical adhesion. (I haven't tried using any of the acrylic primers, in part because the lacquer-based primers are working well for what I'm doing. There are some good YouTube videos out there covering the use of acrylic primers.) Bottom line, you should use a good lacquer-based primer to help smooth over the sanding scratches from the earlier body work. Then scuff the primer before shooting the acrylic paint over it. Hope this helps.
  4. I usually toss treaded tires into a vibratory tumbler with a light blasting media, followed up with walnut hulls. The "sandblasting" media takes the shine off of the surfaces, while the walnut hulls clean the tire back up again getting the blasting media out of the tread grooves. Depending on length of time left in the tumbler you can get a used to a pretty well-worn look, could mask off the sidewalls to get a tread worn look with only slight sidewall wear. I suppose a rock tumbler with either a course or medium grit tumbling media would do the same thing. Could either do them wet or dry and see which cleans up better. Would recommend tumbling with walnut hulls to remove grit and lightly polish the tire. I have also used a fine steel wire brush (dry) to scrub the treaded tires, removes the shine on the sidewalls, treads and between treads with just a light scrubbing. Normally do this after spinning the tire tread against sandpaper or Scotchbrite pad. I've read and heard of others using just plain old Scotchbrite pad all over the tire to scuff it up, to remove the shine.
  5. Yes, you are spot on with your modifications, the second view is what I was describing. Rephrasing the question; I wanted to make sure I was on the same plane you were flying on! LoL!! I thought that was your original meaning before it was taken to left field with all kinds of other examples (albeit good ones). Reminds me of college Mechanical Engineering, where we were exposed to numerous “Cut-A-Ways” of all kinds of mechanical assemblies. They are a great learning tool to assist the “non-visual” person to understand what the assemblies loomed and how they function. Looking forward to seeing your finished “cut-a-way engine”.
  6. I think your question was, "What should go between the lower engine block and the base?". That is before it got sidetracked with the other details, right? This looks like a generic 4-Stroke Horizontal Shaft engine depending on scale could be used in applications such as a rototiller, mini-bike... Blending the engine block to the base would make it appear as one casting, so something needs to separate the engine block from the base. In the last pic that Bill added, it looks like they have used the base as a "fuel tank". Represented by the fuel cap. So, if your kit doesn't have a fuel tank would be a great, logical modification to the kit. The base itself is not a part of the motor, just a base. So, a gasket or other spacer such as something to represent a separation, or vibration damper, between the engine block and its base would look right. If you do this the round stock used to represent the rubber vibration damper could also cut away down to the bolt threads in at least one of the mounts to the base. In a lot of these applications a squared off or round washer goes between the engine and its mounting.
  7. I’ve used the same type of guillotine cutter for a long time too. Never even come close to cutting anything other than the material intended to be cut! Cutting tools of any kind are only as safe as you make them. Think safety at all times whether it’s an X-acto knife or a Dremel with a saw blade spinning at forty-bazillion RPM’s, treating them all like they’re going to bite you is a start. You will only get bit when you’re either taking shortcuts, doing something stupid, or just plain let your guard down. You’re the one with the brain, you have the ability to think; where any piece of machinery can do neither! So plan your steps out ahead of time, it’s your responsibility to protect yourself.
  8. If they are not prethinned, then yes you should be able to brush it on. You really should be asking this question to Model Car World, I’m sure they’ve done tons of product testing, enough to know what their products can and cannot do. Contact MCW and see what they say about it.
  9. The Novus system is like for plexiglas, (i.e. plastics, acrylics). So I’d do the ore polish with the least aggressive polishing pads 1000, 1500, 2000… then move onto the Novus polishes
  10. Dental tools! Its called an Excavator, the one that goosenecks into a thin flat blade on both ends, the blades are around 0.02” Thick X 0.05” Wide X 0.25” Long. I think they’re for carving fillings or wax carving. With a little light file work and a fine hard Arkansas stone you can work the very tip into a sharp hook-like profile. A lot similar to the profile on those Tamiya scribing tools for a lot less cash outlay. I especially like these because you can modify the tip and continue until the profile consistently works for you to route the grooves in the panel (lines). You will have to keep tuning up the profile with use as the dental tools are stainless steel versus a carburized steel, but for the cost I’ll keep tuning.
  11. Try eBay “Doll House Miniatures” or “G Scale Miniatures” or “G Scale Buildings” or “Chimneyville” and “75 mm Figures” maybe “Scenes Unlimited” for a start. Then follow wherever those searches cross reference to should get you pretty closets what you’re after.
  12. Early Dragsters, Altereds - Liquid coolant in block expansion tank. Early 60’s Dragsters, Altereds - Liquid coolant in block with or without expansion tank, moving towards filling the block with concrete grout. Later 60’s & Post Fuel Ban Dragsters, Altereds, Funny Car - Almost exclusively concrete grout filled block, with some holdouts still filling blocks with liquid coolant. 70’s Onward - Dragsters, Funny Cars, Altereds - Iron Block Cars - Nearly all cars ran with concrete grout filled blocks, fewer and fewer were running liquid coolant. Aluminum Block cars solid billet no cooling passages. My high school girlfriend’s dad ran AA/FD, I started hanging around the shop in about 69 through 75 when I left for college. I know they ran grout in all their Mopar based iron blocks. I know this because I helped mix it a few times as they were filling the blocks.
  13. Most two piece tires can be glued together with a vinyl cement, (same glue used to patch waterbed mattresses, inflatable kiddie pools, etc.) Vinyl cement melts and fuses the two part tires together producing a welded joint/bond, superglue only produces a weaker mechanical bond.
  14. Another brand to consider- Paasche I have the 30” Paasche paint booth, they make a smaller 22” unit as well (check Coast Airbrush or Paasche). I got my booth from Coast. I always stop by Coast Airbrush when I’m near Anaheim, CA. I was looking at the smaller 22” booth and talking to (Commercial Accounts rep. / Owner) David (Monnig) about it when he told me he had an unused, returned 30” booth, not in its original packaging. I ended up paying same price as the 22” booth I was looking at, less $50. Both of us were happy with that. He even shipped it for us, so we didn’t have to pack it in the car while we were traveling, (it was waiting for me at the neighbors when we got home). I’ve had the booth for 15+ years and I’ve been really happy with it, never had any problem either. The Paasche is of the same type of quality construction and air evacuation properties as the similar sized Pace units, (I looked at both). As far as 2K clear coats or any catylized, or epoxy type paints; pretty sure that there isn’t a hobby paint booth on the market that will scrub both odor and harmful inhalents enough that one could stand next to the discharge and not be affected by it’s fumes. Spray booths are mainly to contain and evacuate the harmful components of the material being sprayed. You still have to wear respiratory PPE when using a hobby spray booth. I vent mine out a side window with a vent kit from Micro-Mark. My wife tells me she can smell the enamel, lacquer, acrylic lacquer… paint fumes in the nearby garden, it dissipates pretty quickly though, I’ve never had the next door neighbor complain about it. (They did when I used to spray projects outside.) After I get done painting, I keep the booth running and place the dehydrator right in front of it. I used to get the “that stinks” comments when curing paint in the dehydrator, haven’t heard it since I started venting. TIP: No. 1. Line the interior of the spray booth with freezer paper, it will catch the overspray keeping it off the booth itself. Change out the freezer paper when you get too much build up, cuts down on the chance of paint particulate related “dust” which can drop in to haunt your perfect paint! I line it right up to the filter opening and around the front of the booth. No. 2. Vacuum the interior of the booth frequently, as in before you use it. Vacuum the pre-filter as well, if something accidentally gets dropped, it could cause a shower of ultra fine paint dust to rain down on your project. (Never happened to me but I know someone it has, it wasn’t pretty either.)
  15. Not totally familiar with the Bondic material, pretty sure it is stable enough to fill the gap but it’s not styrene. I’m not saying “it ain’t gonna work!” I’ve used the above method for some time on old glue bombs and rare kits where significant areas require replacement. The remove and replace styrene with styrene has always worked out well, probably because it’s the same stuff. I’ve found that fitting the section that’s been removed with a new section that fits in as tightly as possible yields a stable patch. The best patch material are panels from another glue bomb kit of same vintage, or even another body like the one being repaired. On newer stuff I typically use either Plastruct or Evergreen sheet, it’s pretty close to the Chinese recycled styrene. Plus it is soft enough that it can be formed to fit the contours of the section it’s replacing. I believe I first saw this repair method in Fine Scale Modeler, probably 30+ years ago for ship and aircraft models, I’ve seen and heard of other variations, I just adapted it to fit my needs. (CA glue and baking soda is another gap filling method which I’ve also used in repairing old collectible models, (Sci-Fi stuff, Aurora diorama & horror stuff long before any of them were re-released. - Courtesy of The Amazing Figure Modeler magazine.) [ I have several examples of original Revell - Ed Roth monsters, Hawk - Wired Ohs, Revell, SMP, AMT annuals, Johan kits and Promos…. In my collection and collections of others some over 25 years old with this type of repair which are as stable as the day they were repaired. ] if the Bondic works I’m all ears, I'm always looking for easier ways to fix stuff, as long as it’s stable and can stand the test of time, (I.e. no separation or hairline cracking etc.).
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