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Frame

Realistic Finish
May 31, 2002
Some newer kits like Tamiya's YZF-R1 and NSR500 kits come with a Satin Chrome frame. While very nice, this can pose a problem for cleaning up the gate marks and mould lines. You can do one of two things:

  1. Use a Tamiya X-11 Chrome Silver or Model Master Chrome Silver enamel paint to touch up the frame where the plating has been removed. Once dry, the Chrome Silver matches the Satin Chrome almost perfectly.
  2. Or strip the plating off the frame using Castrol Super Clean or Easy Off oven cleaner. Clean up the gate marks and mould lines, make necessary detailing modifications and assemble the frame. Then refinish the frame using an aluminium metallizer. I prefer Model Master Aluminium Plate since it is buffable and can be polished to the level of shine I want. Other metallizers are Alclad II Polished Alumimium and SnJ Aluminium. 


Simulating Welds
There are times when you may want to add welds to the frame or exhaust system. The newest kits usually have excellent weld details. But the older kits may need some improvements.

There are two methods I've used with very effective results.

  1. Tube Glue -  I use Testors tube glue to run a bead of glue to represent surface welds. I apply the glue with a straight pine in order to achieve a fine line. Let the glue dry and paint the part as you usual. I use this method for surface welds on exhaust pipes.
  2. Liquid Glue - I use Tamiya's Extra Thin Cement for corner welds. I apply the thin cement into the seam and let it soften the styrene. Then I use a straight pin held in my pinvise to etch the seam in a welding motion. This results in a very realistic looking weld. I use this method on multipart swingarms like on the YZF-R1.
Contact Coaster
http://home.interlog.com/~khartlen
+/tips/frame.htm
Last revised on: March 2, 2004
Copyright 1998-2003, Kenneth W. Hartlen. All rights reserved.

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