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Vaccuum moulding.. - Scratchbuilding. - More Practical Help - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Mon Jan 17th, 2011 08:36 am
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diablo
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At Leamington Model Railway Society exhibition this weekend just gone was a demonstration of of vaccuum plastic moulding , and in particular the moulding of nissan huts and the like. Seemed to have a lot of potential once the 'master' had been carefully made. Does anyone use this method of scratchbuilding , or has tried it in the past , and what are the 'snags' , (if any).
Thanks

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 Posted: Mon Jan 17th, 2011 09:48 am
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ddolfelin
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I've looked at it recently.
Rather than creating moulds, it would be more useful for me if the process could produce profile originals from a matrix.
It may be a case of using different gauge material to provide sharper detail on the 'reverse' (i.e. the top).

Would be pleased to read of your research.



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 Posted: Mon Jan 17th, 2011 11:10 am
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henryparrot
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Often used in small batch production but in a personal modelling enviroment would it be economically viable as i assume there must be an amount of equipment one needs to mould or is there a  reasonable cost set up for home use?

Brian

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 Posted: Mon Jan 17th, 2011 11:18 am
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Wayne Williams
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Diablo,

I have built many a vacuum formed part, scale 1:1 of course.

It seems like a lot of work to me to get one part from it. If you need multiple parts of the same shape then it would have merit.

Some draw backs that I can think of:

The material (ABS) has some pretty good shrinkage characteristics to it. However that may not come into play with very small structures. The shrinkage gets worse the larger and thicker the part becomes.

Be sure and paint the entire part especially if the sun can shine on the layout. There typically is no ultraviolet protection in the materials and they will degrade quite quickly. By quickly I mean within three years exposed to the sun outside. Inside on a layout, not really sure. Just paint them for protection.

Be aware of die locking the parts. All surfaces must slope (2 degrees minimum) in the direction the mold is removed from. That means the walls of a building would lean in 2 degrees. That said, if your only going to make a one off mold (one part only), then you can demolish the mold to get the part off. Just make sure you have made a good part. :twisted:

Good Luck!

Wayne



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 Posted: Mon Jan 17th, 2011 12:37 pm
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Penlan
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Back in the early 70's when plastikard was still a new material, there were some coach sides done by vacumm forming the palsticard in 4mm, in fact around this Christmas some appeared on ebay.

Those I bought back in the 70's were for LNWR coaches, done by Mike Peascod at the time, they filled a niche market, before I discovered the zinc etchings (ex. printers plates) also available at the time.

I still have 5 vacumm formed coaches (NPCS) running on the layout, they haven't collapsed yet.

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 Posted: Mon Jan 17th, 2011 04:24 pm
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RJR
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I used to own a pattern making company and we manufactured all types of vacuum form tooling and often used to end up in some of the very big part producers having to operate their machinery to "prove" our tooling worked and that their operators were muppets. If I can be of any help Im happy to share what I know.

Here is how you do it at home with an oven and vacuum cleaner

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BVVE5EHzRnk

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 Posted: Mon Jan 17th, 2011 04:57 pm
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henryparrot
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John

You are realy going to be in the Sh*t with all this lots wives if they all start experimenting with that.

I hope you have a air raid shelter in the garden:lol::lol::lol:

All spouse hate mail to RJR please:lol::lol:

Brian

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