the white wire and the black and red wire are about .2 mm and are about as small an insulated wire as I can find. The white wire is from Micron Meter and runs $15.00 for fifty feet. They have it in a bunch of colors but you have to buy a minimum of fifty feet. The shipping was also high, thirteen dollars. I thought I would buy a roll of white and use colored sharpies to color them but whatever the coating is, sharpie ink won't touch it. While the per foot price is good, you would have to invest a hundred dollars for a half dozen different colors. the red and black wires are the best bargain. They come from Hobby King and cost $.44 for one meter. Fabulous price. Only in black and red. They call it Turnigy High Quality 36awg wire. Best deal by far. I bought six meters of each color for $6.00. Believe me, this stuff is tiny. Great for gauges etc. in scale, this wire is around 3/16 of an inch and is the smallest I have found. If anyone knows any smaller scale wire please chime in. I did see some wire used by model railroad people but it was pricey.
In the back of the picture are rolls of beading wire. There are ten colors and ten meters of each color. The larger tools are .4 mm and the smaller rolls are .3 mm. That means the smaller rolls are a scale 3/8 inch while the larger rolls scale out to less than one half of an inch.
these are a super buy at less than ten dollars each set. The drawback is that this is a shiny wire. I tried to touch them up with some sandpaper but I couldn't remove the shine without going through the color. A coat of flat clear worked well but it is one more step. The smaller wire is a good size for every day wiring.
Wire. What are some affordable alternatives? Wire to scale can be expensive. Aftermarket wire can run three dollars a foot. Here are some alternatives.
starting at the left is a bundle of .5 mm wire. This is the size that most aftermarket companies use. I found this bundle of ten feet of ten different colors for less than $6.00. That is 100 feet of wire at six cents a foot. Outstanding deal.
Once dry trim off the excess and clean up the edges. Now use the holes in the top to drill your wire holes. I usually go down about 3/16 of an inch. When drilling these holes I angle the drill slightly toward the center of the sprue so I don't tear out the side of my distributor.
now you can cut off your distributor and mount it on a smaller shaft. By the way, when I drill the hole in the center of the distributor for the coil wire I drill far enough so when I cut off the finished distributor head the center hole is there so I can mount the head.
Now take a thin piece of sheet stock, I use .010 inch, and tape your template to it. Drill out your holes in the thin stock and remove the template.
now find your 5 mm thick sprue and square the end. Drill a hole in the center of the end of the sprue. If anyone needs it I can show you how to make a jig to find the center of a piece of round stock. Now insert a short piece of wire through the center hole of your stock with the holes in it and into the end of the sprue. Glue the pieces together.
How about a six cylinder? Start with a new piece of stock, scribe a straight line and drill a hole on the line somewhere near the middle. Except for the two millimeter distance on your scribe compass, there are no other exact measurements needed. Take your two millimeter compass and move one point out to around an inch or so. Use this to scribe a half circle around your center hole.
now use that same compass to scribe a line from where the circle crosses the straight line to where the compass hits the half circle
Take a piece of sprue and drill two holes two millimeters apart and press a couple of pins into the holes to make a scribe compass. Use this to scribe a circle around your center hole. Now drill 8 holes at the intersection on of your scribed circle. Now you have a template to use for 4 and 8 cylinder distributors.
This is how I make distributors from scratch. My methods are ideas taken from other places and my own spin on things. I first want to have a template for the hole pattern. That saves hours later. I have templates for 8, 6 and 4 cylinder distributors. i got a digital caliper that reads in inches and millimeters. I paid $12.00 from AliExpress. I measure in millimeters because in 1/24 or 1/25 scale, a millimeter on the model is almost exactly one inch on the full size car. So I want a 5 inch around distributor so I look for a 5 millimeter piece of sprue. I keep any sprue that is larger than usual just for these types of things, so now we can make a scale 8 cylinder distributor. take a piece of flat stock, I use .020 inch thick, and scribe a straight line on it. Using any type of straightedge, next draw two more lines parallel to the first
use anything that you know has a 90 degree corner and scribe a line perpendicular to one of your original lines
Thanks djflyer. It is great fun for me to try to invent new ways of using cheap materials. It is not even the money. I am old enough to be able to invest pretty much what I want in my hobby, but I really get a kick out of making my own stuff. The aftermarket is amazing and there are things out there that are truly Beautiful. For me though, it sometimes feels like modeling can become less of a creative experience and more of a shopping experience. Open up any online aftermarket catalog and you can just click on your end result. Pick a distributor package, a carburetor package, a wiring package, a hose package, a pulley package, an interior package, wait for the mailman and glue them all together. A beautiful finished product but for me, those cars can kind of become a showcase for some other vendors talent while the builder becomes more of an assembler. This is just my opinion, don't hate me for it.
Next up are oil coolers and roll bar. I just helped someone build a scratch built distributor and I took some pics. I thought I might put up a little tutorial on how I do a distributor if anyone is interested.