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Dismantling a build model

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  • Member since
    November 2005
Dismantling a build model
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, January 12, 2003 7:49 AM
Hi everybody,

just read your February issue, where someone asked about a ay how to dismantle a build model. Well there isApprove [^] a way to do that and I have done it several times some years ago, but believe me it works, just don´t ask me why and how. Most of all this technique is dead simple and that´s why I like it. No, I don´t use any explosives to do the job, but ordinary automobile braking fluid! Just put the whole model in some kind of steel bowl and pour the fluid over it, so that it is completely covered. (That might be a problem with bigger models of course) After that you only have to wait for a couple of days (2-4days) after that the model will be completely stripped of all decals, and colors you (or someone else) has put on it. Even the glue will come apart and thats it. Just be careful with the fluid cause it´s not very healthy!
Keep on modeling. René Hieronymus, Salzburg/Austria
  • Member since
    December 2002
  • From: Canada / Czech Republic
Posted by upnorth on Sunday, January 12, 2003 2:11 PM
If you want to avoid the health risks of the automotive fluids, heres another option:

You'll need a plastic container (I prefer Rubbermaid plastic storage boxes) thats as close to the size of your model as you can find (You may have to do a slight bit of manual dismantling if the model is too big), and a bottle of isopropyl alcohol.

Place your model in the container and pour in enough alcohol to cover the bottom of the container completely, next, fill the container with hot tap water until the model is submerged, or as close to submerged as you can get it. Then, put the cover on the container, don't seal it, just place the cover on.

Put the container in some out of the way place away from any ignition sources and leave it over night. If your model was painted with acrylics, you should be able to remove them easily at this point with an old toothbrush and some elbow grease. You'll probably need a couple of repeated soakings before your enamels start to loose their grip. The alcohol will also make the glue brittle and easy to break without undo damage to the plastic. It also will not fog clear parts.

I much prefer to use this method over things like oven cleaners or automotive fluids, save them for your stove or your car. The alcohol isn't foolproof but its much less risky on your health.
  • Member since
    November 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, January 14, 2003 12:50 PM
I have heard some good points about brake fluid too, but is it safe for the plastic? wouldn`t it become softer?
And what about the small parts, will it be safe for them?
and the clear parts?
Question [?]
After some years I returned to my parents house and after looking for some old things in my old Bedroom I found a Ford T, modeled when I was a kid, boy, a lot of memories came to me, the feeling when opening the box, the awful method to paint it ...., well, its is special, so I don`t want to ruin it`, thats why I´m asking all this things.

Thanks for your HelpSmile [:)]
  • Member since
    November 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Wednesday, January 22, 2003 6:09 PM
Ok:
A while back I was building a model, and I Got disgusted with the paint Job I had, So I put the section I was workin on, and put it in a container of, it was either brake fluid or mineral spirits, and I forgot about it! Well, few months later, I went back and the piece was still there! What had happened, was the piece was VERY elastic. It stretched, Twisted, etc.....
Needless to say, it was useless.
I had asked a hobby store owner about how to remove paints before, and he said be careful, for the fluid will make the plastic really brittle.
  • Member since
    November 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Wednesday, January 22, 2003 6:57 PM
If anyone does choose to use brake fluid, please be careful and handle it properly. Make sure you also dispose of it properly.

...from the Ohio EPA's Automotive Maintenance Products Facts Page:

Brake Fluid

Brake fluid is a flammable product which contains solvents in the form of glycols. Brake fluid is a poison and, if ingested, may cause central nervous system depression and kidney failure. Used brake fluid contains lead and other heavy metals in addition to solvents. These heavy metals can pose an environmental danger if disposed of improperly.

Disposal of Brake Fluid
Brake fluid should be disposed of by a licensed hazardous waste handler or saved until a professional household hazardous waste collection is available. Contact your local solid waste management district office (listed under county government) for information.

Storage of Brake Fluid
Store out of reach of children.
Store away from flames and sources of ignition.
If the metal can in which the brake fluid is stored begins to rust, place the metal container inside a plastic container and label the outside container.
  • Member since
    December 2002
  • From: Canada / Czech Republic
Posted by upnorth on Thursday, January 23, 2003 5:30 PM
THANK YOU FOR POINTING THAT OUT!

It never ceases to amaze me the sort of health risks I see some of my fellow modelers puting themselves at for the hobby.

I'm a firm believer in the old saying: "A place for everything and everything in its place" brake fluid belongs in your garage with your car, not in your house, NOT ANYWHERE IN YOUR HOUSE FOR ANY REASON.

Oven cleaner belongs in your kitchen, cleaning your oven. Period.

If you are going to work with hazardous materials, do yourself a favour and pay a visit to either the WHMIS or Centres for Disease Control websites. They both have direct links to Material Safety and Data Sheets (MSDS) online.

For those of you with families, especially if you're the only modeler in the house, When you choose to expose yourself to toxins in your home, you're also choosing to expose your loved ones to them as well, whether they like it, know it, or not.

Its one thing if you put yourself in the hospital or the grave, its quite another if you put one of your loved ones there beacause you used a toxin for your hobby. How far would you go for your hobby? What would you risk to get that perfect model?

Just something to think about. I hope you will.
  • Member since
    November 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, February 4, 2003 9:42 AM
Off course you are absolutely right, by telling us how dangerous some fluids and other chemicals can be but hey let´s play it cool and professional. No one ever said that these kind of techniques should be used by kids while trying to build their first kit. Besides of that if I remember right there are a lot of other things and tools like knifes and motor tools which can be very, very nasty to your health if not used properly. And what about using chemicals for doing your own photo-etched parts? If somebody is looking for a complete safe hobby then we all should try it with collecting stamps, playing with dolls or something similar to that. At last everyone who is involved with our hobby - model-building should be careful and always try to to be extremely careful when using various tools and or chemicals like solvents, cements and other things. Any hobby you do, should most of all be fun for you to do and if there is anything involved with it which might be dangerous, it´s in everybodies responsibility to inform himself how to avoid any risks to himself or anyone else. But isn´t that obvious?
  • Member since
    November 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, February 4, 2003 11:24 AM
I think that alot of things are 'obvious', but perhaps that doesn't apply to everyone who is reading this forum. I'm sure there are younger readers here just getting started in the hobby. Although the brake fluid probably works well for it's intended purpose (with the caveats already mentioned), I'm not so sure I'd be happy if I found my young son with a container of brake fluid smeared all over one of his models (my son is way too young to be doing models yet, but I've used some creative license to get to my point) based on advice he got on this forum. We can't protect our kids from 'everything', but some things (like hazardous materials) are worth a few extra words.

I don't think there is any 'criticism' intended in Bayonet Recon's or upnorth's posts, but clearly we need to make sure that all of the relevent facts are being communicated to anyone who might read the advice we are giving.

It all starts at home with the education and guidance we give our kids, but some homes don't have the same standards of 'parenting' as others.

Be safe.

M.
  • Member since
    November 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, February 6, 2003 10:06 AM


Greetings folks,

I've found that Formula 409 is another alternative to dismantling. The all pupose cleaner removes paint very well(even that which has been on there for awhile) Once the paint has been removed, I drain off the 409, rinse the model and then submerge it into a tub of bleach for a week or two. The bleach breaks down the bonds and Ta-Da! you have a dismantled kit. The best part, no OSHA approved equipment involved or required.

Keep on building

Steve
  • Member since
    December 2002
  • From: USA
Posted by jcarlberg on Thursday, February 6, 2003 12:13 PM
I have heard that Bleche-Wite (their spelling) works for removing paint, etc. I suppose that any strong alkaline detergent would do well, and be less hazardous than flammable solvents or caustic materials like oven cleaner. As to their effect on glue, they may attack super glue, but are not likely to affect liquid cement bonding, which actually melts and welds the plastic together. Tube plastic cement has less melting effect, and so may be weaker, but unless the original glue bonds were weak, you are probably looking at mechanically disassembling the model by scoring seams with a knife and then prying them open.
  • Member since
    November 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, February 6, 2003 1:48 PM
Castrol Super Clean is a popular paint remover as well. I believe it's billed as an 'environmentally friendly' cleaner/degreaser product that is most often used for automotive purposes? I've used it to strip all sorts of paint by filling a tub and just leaving the model in it for a day or so. Usually works within a day or two and all you need to do is remove it from the 'tub' and rinse with warm running water and soap (a toothbrush helps as well). I've also noticed that it weakens the glue bonds, but I've never tried submerging an entire model.

M.
  • Member since
    December 2002
  • From: USA
Posted by jcarlberg on Friday, February 7, 2003 9:52 AM
The Castrol product you mention is a strong alkaline soap, and you should read and follow the label for precautions and to avoid eye injury and burnt skin.
  • Member since
    November 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Friday, February 7, 2003 11:48 AM
Yes,
Thank you for the clarification on Castrol Super Clean!! It's in the same category as brake fluid (ie. hazardous chemical) and should be handled appropriately and by adults.

M.
  • Member since
    November 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, February 16, 2003 8:36 PM
Can you do it also with clear plastic parts, because I built partly a phantom but made a mess out of it. So reading this article I want to try it on the phantom.
  • Member since
    February 2003
  • From: Panama City, Florida, Hurricane Alley
Posted by berny13 on Monday, February 17, 2003 4:48 PM
I have been reading this and have a question. I have four AIM-9 Sidewinders in 1/32 scale I need to "Depaint" What is the best and safest way to do it?

Berny

Berny

 Phormer Phantom Phixer

On the bench

TF-102A Delta Dagger, 32nd FIS, 54-1370, 1/48 scale. Monogram Pro Modeler with C&H conversion.  

Revell F-4E Phantom II 33rd TFW, 58th TFS, 69-260, 1/32 scale. 

Tamiya F-4D Phantom II, 13th TFS, 66-8711, 1/32 scale.  F-4 Phantom Group Build. 

 

  • Member since
    November 2005
Posted by Anonymous on Monday, February 17, 2003 9:50 PM
I'm not really sure there is a totally 'safe' way to remove paint, so any method used should be done with caution. The methods listed above are the most commonly used (AFAIK). I prefer CSC myself. You have to dump it in a 'tub' of some sort and let the model 'bath' in it for several hours.

As for clear parts, I'm not sure what the CSC would do to them? I'll try out a test piece tonight and post a reply tomorrow with the results. The other alternative is to remove the clear part and sand/polish any offending paint off.

M.
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