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Been playing around to see how to make some nice fitting windows for a couple 300SL's. Here's how I've done it to help anyone else who wants to do it...

First I used some milliput and squeezed it into the inside of the body, I covered the inside of the body with cling film to stop the milliput bonding with the shell and let it harden over night. Once the milliput has set I then filed down the shape to clear the thickness of the clear plastic I'm going to use for the windows....



then on a homemade vac former using a vacuum cleaner for suction I formed the windows...



made further shapes in the same way for front and rear windows...



and vac formed over those shapes too...



the reason the windows are done separately is so I can get the milliput out of the car once its set. Didn't have to do this for the Jag I built recently as I used the windows from the die cast but I'm making more than one merc and the windows from the diecast aren't suitable anyway as my resin body is thicker than the diecast for strength so they wouldn't fit properly anyway. So for anyone else casting bodies maybe this method will help.

If anyone else has another way to make windows it would be great to see how you do it. I'm getting good results but its a lot of work
 

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They look like properly manufactured windows Marlon!
What does a homemade vacformer look like??
Cheers
Kev.
 

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Thanks Kev, its just a box with a hole in the side a perforated top. I then clamp down the plastic over the top, warm it up with a heat gun (paint stripping variety) and turn on the vacuum cleaner that I hold over the hole in the side. Very crude but seems to do the job. I'll post a pic of it in the morning in daylight.
 

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your windows look perfect. for sure the best way to get nice fitting windows, everything else are just toys.

here´s a pic of my vac-former:



and a video



 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Nice video Peter, your former is the same as mine but instead of using a hot plate to heat the plastic I use a heat gun.

For 1/43 I was thinking about one of these here, what do you think?
 

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Joel LeNoir
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Marlon.......Very nice. This will work great on "spark" cars. They have very thin windows. much to hard to make moulds from. Well at least for me. I was also thinking of using air dry art clay. I have been using this clay to fill the inside void of the cars in the moulding process.
 

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the dental vac-former? not sure if this is necessary, my home made one works awesome, no need to spend that money!
 

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QUOTE (MAF @ 25 Nov 2011, 20:48) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Been playing around to see how to make some nice fitting windows for a couple 300SL's. Here's how I've done it to help anyone else who wants to do it...



A really good idea. But the windows don´t fit really well in my opinion. Their surface looks a bit round / convex , the edges along the window frame are quite rounded and the corners are not really filled.
It is not easy to find the right amount of material to be removed from the mould . And what I see seems to be a result of the clear foil not being sucked really sharply and deep enough into the corners/ edges of the mould.

Roland
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Hi Roland, thanks for your feedback! I agree. I'm still working on it and think the problem is the way I'm heating the plastic. I'm using a heat gun and vacuum at the same time but should do what Peter does in his video and heat the plastic first then put in on the vac former. I've always struggled with a good fit and opened this thread to see if anyone else has any tips.
 

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hi marlon, i think rather than the way you heat the plastic it is that master is too small, (although i do heat the plastic separately under the grill and transfer it very quickly to the vac box). When martin did our masters he made them fit the apertures exactly then reduce them by 1/2mm all round to allow for the thickness of the clear plastic. I use 1/4mm hips plastic from 4d models. The way i have started to do them is to squish millput into the silicon mould where the windows are, not too much force or the mould will distort. when it has gone off then pop them out and finish by hand reducing the size slightly to allow for the thickness of the clear plastic. The bottom surface then needs to be sanded flat so it sits flush on the suction surface. the overall thickness works best for me at 5mm or less, hope that helps.
cheers steve
 

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As Steve F. says, that's how I do the patterns and as long as the plastic is floppy enough it will form very well without that convex appearance, but the smaller the model, the more accurate the fit has to be.
I always make my vac-form patterns to be moulded flat as separate pieces, not that silly shed shaped idea where nothing ever fits. If they fit well, you need only trim round with sharp scissors and use your favourite glue to fix them.
Oh, and I use butter as a release agent for the Milliput. Cling film can get a bit messy and creased up.
Martin
 

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I enjoyed the thread very much....very informative.
I would like to know, however, what clear sheet you are using as the window or body....
Thanks in advance
John
 

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Phil Kalbfell
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John a good source of easy to find PVC is from an Office supply place, the clear PVC used for the covers when binding presentations is ideal. Usually available in 10 and 15 thou.
 

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Slot Car Racer and Builder
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I re-cycle the clear PVC from all the packaging the kids Christmas presents came in - everything seems to be sold in clear packaging these days.

DM
 

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Thanks Phil and DM ....I will continue to collect clear packaging but also have a look at office supply shops here.
 
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