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Gary Skipp
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Seeing as Christmas is approaching, I thought it'd be a good time to try and aquire some scratchbuilding kit, with the handy tag that it'll keep me busy during the holidays


What do I need? I'm not talking about motors and parts, but stuff to build with.

I understand Brass and Piano wire is used, any specific type, or will any old stuff do?

Also, What will I need to cut, stick and shape these materials? Dremel, solder?

If you could point to some (uk) stockists then that'd be helpful.

Thanks guys!
 

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Hi Gary

I have a article on my site that will help some.

http://jbriggsk9.tripod.com/chrisbriggsslotcarpage/id35.html

As for the brass I use nothing thinner than 1/16" (.062) thick brass.. Get a good assortment brass sheet and rod, you will also need brass tubing for axle carriers and such....... for the brass sheet you can get that from 1/4" wide to 2" wide....

A bench vice is nice as well as some C clamps to hold brass to the work bench when cutting is a good idea too..... And for me and my old eyes I magnifying lamp is also a must have item too :)

Chris
 

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Alan Tadd
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Hi Gary

Do take a look at Chris's site you will learn a lot from it, I certainly did.

The most useful tool you can buy is a good quality Dremmel, buy a decent mains powered one with at least two speeds, together with cutting discs and sanding drums. I would also suggest a small drill set and appropriate collet for the dremel. Get one from B & Q or other superstores, or even Ebay.

A set of needle files is a necessity, I bought a very cheap set at my local "What" store for £1 and they are really good on plastics and resin shells, you will need something a little more robust for brass.

A decent set of precision watchmakers screwdrivers, again from your local superstore.

A selection of adhesives, a two part epoxy such as Araldite, some plastic cement, some superglue and some PVA based adhesive such as Micro Klear., All from your local Model or Hobby shop.

An Exacto modelling knife, expensive, but get the best and also a very cheap set from your local Poundland or Poundsaver for the dirty work

The majority of these items and your raw materials such as Brass, piano wire, PC Board etc can be bought through Squires. They don't have a website, but you can order by telephone or use they order forms. If you contact them they will send you a wonderful catalogue of their stock. Telephone Number 01243 842424.

Much, much more available and I'm sure others will add to the list, (Howmet will recommend a saw I'm sure!).

Good luck to you.

Regards

Alan
 

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Good thread Gary


If you don't mind me adding a related question:

I looked at getting a dremmel a couple of months ago, but was put off by the massive range and choice of features, and my lack of understanding of how important these are.

So 2 speed is enough? Variable speed is a waste of money? Is motor power important? Are all tools interchangeable, or do only dremmel ones fit a dremmel? Are other makes worth considering?

More advice from dremmel experts appreciated!
 

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Alan Tadd
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The Dremmel shown in your Link Gary is the same as mine.

The slow speed is ideal for cutting axles to length and Pc Board and the high speed I use for brass. I never really saw the point of a variable speed device, although having said that I do have a variable speed min drill which is handy.

The cone shaped stone in the advert is ideal for forming headlight apatures in Resin cars.

Good price as well.

Regards

Alan
 

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Alan Tadd
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Gary
You need a container full of cutting discs....they do break fairly frequently. They are very good if you can cut in a downward direction but any lateral movement will tend to shatter the disc.

The best ones by far are the genuine Dremel discs, but they are expensive. There are much cheaper ones available but they don't tend to last for so long(even if you don't manage to break them!.. Try your local B & Q they usually have a good selection of "add ons".

Regards

Alan
 

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I bought a cheap 'no brand' Dremmel-a-like from Woolworths for about £20 which has lasted for ages. It's got a variable speed although for the sort of lightweight work I've used it for I've never found any real advantage to be gained with adjusting the speed. YMMV. To my way of thinking £20 is cheap enough to just buy another when you start to run out of attachments.

If using cutting discs, buy a pair of goggles from Focus DIY or similar. The discs can shatter with no warning and I've had a fragment of disc cut me on the cheekbone. Unpleasant...

Also does anybody know what disc to use for cutting the sort of plastic on chassis? I find the carbide ones just chew away at the plastic and leave a mess rather than cutting cleanly so on my PCS32 I've resorted to the good old junior hacksaw.

Coop
 

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I use a Dremel nowadays as it has variable speed and a strong motor. I have burnt out two cheaper unbranded drills in the last couple of years but I do loads of grinding out of resin shells which takes forever, cutting and drilling chassis work is not so heavy work for an unbranded drill.

I use a fine circular saw attachment for cutting plastic chassis and sheet and it gives a nice clean cut. If I'm doing an accurate cut when I'm "cutting and shutting" a chassis I use a really fine fret saw and support the chassis in a mitre block to ensure squareness.

Like everyone else is saying I have loads of cutting discs and other attachments because of breakages and I buy any brand - cheaper the better - as they all seem to work as well as each other.

When I'm cutting metal I work in cuts of a few seconds at a time as the disc gets red hot and I lift off the work for a few seconds to allow it to cool - I assume this reduces the risk of breakage?

David
 

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TOOLS man, thats all you need to know. As you start doing things the need for TOOLS and what kind will become evident. Pretty soon , you , too will gather many , and do many things with them, they can easily rise to the level of "shoes" to a certain thread author elsewhere in these pages. Tools, man!
There are TOOLS to do most everything out there and , yes, I am a tool user/shopper/lover, etc. I make no apology for my TOOL habit! I can quit anytime!!! Get some TOOLS!! Twisting, turning, cutting, drilling, milling (these are a few of my favorite things!). With enough TOOLS I could rule the world!! But, I digress.
 

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Hey- er- Harry. Know a good, like- dealer, man? I'm having trouble feeding my habit, like. I think my tool steel is getting cut with, like inferior alloys. I just can't get that edge like I used to. My gadget for making gadgets needs another gizmo. Somethin' fresh! A new high!
I digress, too.
Didja ever find BJ, Harry?
 

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Brian Ferguson
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A Dremel is the number one tool in my arsenal. In fact, I have two. Both are variable speed and I use the feature depending on material being cut/shaped and the discs/tools being used. One is outfitted with a flex-shaft and one with a 3-jaw chuck. Everything from cutting brass to shaping openings in bodies I do with the Dremel. I have also found 10,000 uses for it around the house! Number one consumable is the cut-off disc - buy them by the container.

A good soldering iron/torch, if you wish to work with brass, is a necessity. I have two irons (30W and 80W) plus a butane unit with iron and torch tips. For soldered PCB chassis, an inexpensive 30-45W iron should be more than adequate.

As mentioned before, a good set of miniature files is very desirable, and a couple of larger ones will prove handy too on larger pieces.

I have a set of micro-sized drill bits that I use a lot.

An X-Acto knife, or equivalent, is a must. #11 blades are the most commonly used but there are some others, like the saw blades, that often prove to be handy.

Super glues and two-part epoxy glues.

A set of good, very fine artist brushes for detail painting.

A small vise, like the Dremel D-vice, is extremely handy.

A good building jig is priceless. (Thanks again, Russell!)

I have an X-Acto razor saw and aluminum mitre box that also see considerable use. (Though not as much as Howmet's does!
)

Various small spring and C-clamps.

A small machinists rule and a pair of dial calipers are very handy.

A cut-proof matt is nice.

A magnifier lamp is great even if your eyes are still in excellent condition.

Small wire strippers, side cutters, and pliers.

A jeweller's screwdriver set - think that was mentioned before too.

Plenty of sandpaper in various fine and super-fine grits.

An electric belt/disc sander is quite handy for shaping rough cut brass, PCB, and plastic pieces.

A small drill press is nice.

Oooops..... forgive me...... I'm basically inventorying my bench as I pack it up for moving!
No more building for a while.
 

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Gary Skipp
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6,536 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Hi Fergy

Thanks for the workshop reccomendaitions, but I'm looking to obtain a three to five item kit bag, not an industiral engineering lab


Or am I being naive? Do you really need all that stuff?

So far I'm looking at:
Dremel (or likewise) Tool
Spare Discs
Xacto Knife
Various Files
Materials such as Brass and Piano Wire

I allready have a few small drill bits, some sandpaper and glues.

Sorry if I seem like I'm beeing difficult, but this seems a tad deeper than I was imagining.
 

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Brian Ferguson
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You are on the right track!
The rest will come later!


As I said.... I'm packing for a move, so I kinda listed everything in the build area since I'm boxing it up
.... you don't need it, but at some point, you will think about it!
In my case, after 35 years of doing it, the shop is perhaps more comprehensive than some..... though less than many!


Your list looks good!
But you will need soldering equipment or have great experience and faith in epoxy glues.


The finish work is easy, done by hand. It is the cutting and fabrication level where a Dremel and good soldering equipment (if you work with metal) truly prove themselves.
 

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See what I mean? (BJ understands) You may only want a "small kit" now, but whats a "small kit" anyway? A little may be good now but this habit grows.

I'm Harry and I'm a tool-a-holic.
 

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You are getting good advice from all the guys..... I use the variable speed dremel myself.... And you will need a LOT of cut off disks.. I like the fine ones over the heavy duty ones.... you get a finer cut line... And yes PLEASE wear a good set of safty glasses... That is the first thing you should buy..............

Using the dremel with the cut off disks takes a little practice..... I clamp my material to the work bench to hold it steady... and remember the brass will be HOT after cutting so use pliers or something to pick it up... I also have a old 2 pound weight on my bench to put the brass on to use as a heat sink.....

I have also tried putting a little oil.... 3in1 on the cut line and that seems to help keep the brass cooler and the cutting disk lasts longer too....

Chris
 

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Alan Tadd
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Chris

QUOTE I also have a old 2 pound weight on my bench to put the brass on to use as a heat sink.....

Would this be your Corvette?.....


Hope you are well...

Regards

Alan
 
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