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Fabricating a windshield - how to.

6 replies
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  • Member since
    October 2020
Fabricating a windshield - how to.
Posted by BrianK on Tuesday, October 20, 2020 2:16 PM

Looking for thoughts on fabricating a windshield to replace the "messed up" one in hand.

I am not thinking of actual molding (it would not surprise me if some have actually done that).

I am thinking there is some clear plastic that might be just right? Something with the right consistency to trace and cut the piece, and take the right shape when glued in? Or maybe trying to turn flat into something with some curvatures prevents it...

  • Member since
    January 2020
Posted by Space Ranger on Tuesday, October 20, 2020 2:40 PM

The thin plastic used as collar stiffener in new shirt packaging can be used, as can the thin clear blister pack plastic. Neither are styrene, however, so they require CA or epoxy adhesive. Both are great for windshields of old open-cockpit biplanes. You can lay the pattern out in the flat then score it (carefully) and fold it along frame lines.

If you have access to a vacform machine, you can use the original plastic part as a master to make a new one.

  • Member since
    April 2020
Posted by Eaglecash867 on Tuesday, October 20, 2020 3:13 PM

How badly is your windshield scratched?  You may be able to save it with Micromesh and Novus.  I often have to use that routine after deliberately "scratching" a mold line away from an aircraft canopy.  With a little bit of sanding with the micromesh in progressively finer grits, polishing with Novus, and a final dip in Future, the scratch I made with the #11 blade I used for scraping the mold line is completely gone.  Might be a lot easier than trying to make a replacement if the scartch isn't very deep.

"You can have my illegal fireworks when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers...which are...over there somewhere."

  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Tuesday, October 20, 2020 4:21 PM

Another source of clear plastic are plastic bottles: soda, mouthwash, dishwashing liquid, etc.

If you're lucky, you might even find one with just the right curvature.


  • Member since
    May 2009
  • From: Poland
Posted by Pawel on Tuesday, October 20, 2020 4:42 PM


I've fabricated aircraft canopies before, and so I believe a windshield can be done, too. I would advise against those collar stiffeners and stuff like that - the thing is they turn yellow or orange after a few years and this is annoying. You are a lot better off looking for good quality sheet plastic like Vivak or stuff like that.

Then the trick would be to make a positive form for the windshield you need - like a plaster of paris casting of the original or something like that (it needs to be really smooth!) and then heating a piece of that clear plastic and pulling it over your form - this might give you the shape you need. After that it's a matter of careful trimming and fitting it to the remainder of your model.

Hope it helps - good luck with your builds and have a nice day


All comments and critique welcomed. Thanks for your honest opinions!

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Tuesday, October 20, 2020 5:46 PM

For smash molding I like to use the clamshell clear plastic takeout boxes, or the lids from the clear tubs that mixed greens come in. Both have big flat areas.

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.


  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: New Braunfels, Texas
Posted by Tanker-Builder on Wednesday, October 21, 2020 11:37 AM

Hi Brian!

     I was thinking about what you might be facing. Many times I have Sanded all the flaws out of an old windshield. Then Polished to a nice clear unit again. Question; What kind of vehicle does it go on? If it is any of the cars after the " Bubble top,Windshield overcurve, then it's easy. You can get clear styrene sheet, I belive it's .010 from Evergreen or your Local Hobby store.

     Use the vehicle frame and make a paper pattern of the windshield, From outside. Then Add 1/16" and cut out along the line staying a 1/16" off. Clean edges and mount to the inside of the frame with White Glue such as Aleens or Testors Window Maker.


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