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11Charlie
#099
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Ohio, United States
Joined: March 04, 2004
KitMaker: 926 posts
AeroScale: 31 posts
Posted: Thursday, January 08, 2009 - 10:51 PM GMT+7
I take apart old watches, radios and the like for scratch building various items I need...there are tons of tiny springs, very fine copper wire, gears, wires, and countless other bits and pieces that have a number of applications in all types of modeling....for example: a pointed watch hand could be used as a knife or sword for a figure...

I sort the parts and store them in small drawer organizers.

I also save the foil from wine bottles, guitar strings and many, many other items....just in case, cause you never know when you might be able to use them
Tanker9
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California, United States
Joined: January 31, 2009
KitMaker: 165 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Wednesday, February 04, 2009 - 10:56 PM GMT+7
Dunno if someone mentioned it before, but I re-use aluminum cans, plastic bottles and coffee cups by cutting them off an inch or so from the bottom and use as a mixing container for paints. Tin or aluminum is good for using to clean brushes too.

Also the plastic caps or tops can be used to mix a tiny amount of paint for touch-ups and micro-painting. You can glue them to a piece of cardboard, plastic or wood and make them virtually spill-proof too.

lighthorseman
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South Australia, Australia
Joined: April 26, 2008
KitMaker: 84 posts
AeroScale: 1 posts
Posted: Tuesday, February 10, 2009 - 10:06 PM GMT+7
i was lucky to work in a factory for a stage that used a lot of conveyor belts
one of these was made of a net type material.
the belt became cactus so i aquired my self a strip of this.
could be good for larger scale cam nets(altho thickness may be a little out of scale)

other things i have found
using glass jars(thinners water etc)
bottle caps(mixing pains)
CMOT
Staff MemberEditor-in-Chief
ARMORAMA
#406
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England - South West, United Kingdom
Joined: May 14, 2006
KitMaker: 10,062 posts
AeroScale: 230 posts
Posted: Monday, February 16, 2009 - 05:33 PM GMT+7
While following orders issued by SWMBO today I was cleaning out a wardrobe and I threw away about 200 plastic coat hangers. some of these coat hangers are the type that you get when SWMBO buys a skirt. Just cut the arms either side of the gripper and you have free clamps, I am also sure a quick plea at a clothes shop will get you more clamps than you can shake a stick at. They also have a soft pad on each side of the gripping area so they don't slip, I think these will be excellent for anyone who makes wingy thingies due to the broad gripping surface. If this has been posted before I will shut up.
Pyromaniac
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England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: January 10, 2009
KitMaker: 375 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Saturday, March 07, 2009 - 03:08 PM GMT+7
this may also have been posted before, but the protective caps found on many deodorant and shaving foam cans to stop the button being pressed in transit make fanstastic mixing pots. i never throw them away now and have around 10 on my workbench, none of which ever seem to be clean when i need them. i also recently found a strange kind of interior wall material in a skip which consists of plasterboard, then about 2" of this odd pink foam stuff, and then a kind of fibreglass type layer on the other side. the foam is fairly strong, but rub it or press with too much force and it will turn to a powder. i seperated this and found it exellent for building up terrain for dioramas. you just rough out the shape, glue it to the base and then squash it to interesting contours. i found that a coat of PVA solved the powder issue, and if you evenly squash the fiam first it will put up more resistance to crushing later on. i should also point out that this foam is very fine grained, if that's the word, slightly more so than styrofoam.
ajkochev
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Utah, United States
Joined: June 25, 2008
KitMaker: 245 posts
AeroScale: 3 posts
Posted: Tuesday, April 28, 2009 - 10:19 AM GMT+7
I use Hersey's Kiss foil wrappers for tarps and covers. Its easy to bend, paint and work with, plus the wrinkles in it look very realistic. Haven't found anything even close to the look when painted and weathered.
lespauljames
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England - South West, United Kingdom
Joined: January 06, 2007
KitMaker: 3,661 posts
AeroScale: 369 posts
Posted: Tuesday, April 28, 2009 - 02:10 PM GMT+7

Quoted Text

this may also have been posted before, but the protective caps found on many deodorant and shaving foam cans to stop the button being pressed in transit make fanstastic mixing pots. i never throw them away now and have around 10 on my workbench, none of which ever seem to be clean when i need them. i also recently found a strange kind of interior wall material in a skip which consists of plasterboard, then about 2" of this odd pink foam stuff, and then a kind of fibreglass type layer on the other side. the foam is fairly strong, but rub it or press with too much force and it will turn to a powder. i seperated this and found it exellent for building up terrain for dioramas. you just rough out the shape, glue it to the base and then squash it to interesting contours. i found that a coat of PVA solved the powder issue, and if you evenly squash the fiam first it will put up more resistance to crushing later on. i should also point out that this foam is very fine grained, if that's the word, slightly more so than styrofoam.




dude that might be asbestos for gods sake dont use it just in case.!
Pyromaniac
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England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: January 10, 2009
KitMaker: 375 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Saturday, May 23, 2009 - 01:51 PM GMT+7
haha lol don't worry i'm pretty sure it isn't. firstly, asbestos isn't pink, and secondly, i pinched it from the skip used by the roofing company across the road from me. The bits i used were just unused off-cuts and as asbestos is completely illegal in the UK it seems unlikely that a company would be using it new.

thanks for your concern though, unfortunately it's mostly been used up now
ouyin2000
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Alberta, Canada
Joined: December 10, 2007
KitMaker: 4 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Sunday, July 05, 2009 - 02:07 AM GMT+7
I have recently aquired a coil of decent thickness wire. I picked up some small alligator clips from a stationary store, and attatched them to the end of a length of wire. Coil the other end of the wire, and you have a great piece for holding parts while painting, and it stands up on its own.

Also, the small medicine cups work great for mixing paint, and they're measured too. I picked up a whole tube of them from the pharmasist the other day.
Tonyfr
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Ohio, United States
Joined: June 12, 2009
KitMaker: 516 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Wednesday, August 26, 2009 - 02:00 PM GMT+7
This is a really good thread. Wish I had read it a few weeks ago. I went and changes the strings on all my guitars. Never thought to save them to make antennas and cables.

I use the plastic apple sauce cups to mix paints etc. I use paper plates as pallets.

Tony
retiredyank
#160
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Arkansas, United States
Joined: June 29, 2009
KitMaker: 10,865 posts
AeroScale: 79 posts
Posted: Friday, August 28, 2009 - 08:45 AM GMT+7
I get used gift cards from places like Walmart, Target, Best Buy. Instant small scale styrene. Getting larger pieces free is a bit more difficult.
retiredyank
#160
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Arkansas, United States
Joined: June 29, 2009
KitMaker: 10,865 posts
AeroScale: 79 posts
Posted: Tuesday, November 17, 2009 - 07:27 AM GMT+7
Staples work great for grab rails. Cheap pen jackets for barrells.
dioman13
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Indiana, United States
Joined: August 19, 2007
KitMaker: 2,090 posts
AeroScale: 54 posts
Posted: Saturday, February 06, 2010 - 12:10 PM GMT+7
Here's some more. Plastic garbage bag twist ties that come in a sheet. Cut to desired size, add a backing, paint with water base glue, then paint for corrigated tin sheets. Also. as seperate ties, burn off the plastic or paper and instant antennas. They never snap like styrene and hold paint well. If they bend on the way to a show, just straighten them back. Plastic ice cube trays are real handy when builing dio's. Fantastic for lots of figures, one figure and it's equipment in one spot. Plastic pill bottles from the drug store, good for storage and shipping parts to other modlers. Dam near forgot. For us that have kids or friends with kids, the TOY BOX! A never ending supply of odd ball and weird stuff when you clean it out. You would be amazed about the little things you find in the bottom. Large wire from old broken jumper cables are great for wire trees too. Oh yea, when you by the wife flowers for what ever reason, the small filler flowers are good for things like lily pad blosoms and flowers. Furnace filters make good small filler branchs in wire trees.
collin26
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Connecticut, United States
Joined: March 24, 2007
KitMaker: 317 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Friday, May 07, 2010 - 11:27 PM GMT+7
* washed out yogurt containers are excelent for mixing pigments and resin for mud.
* I have used thin metal from take out chinese for scratch building ezhaust shrowds and fenders
* ordinary pencils work well for giving a metalic shene to the edges of worn fenders etc.
rebelsoldier
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Arizona, United States
Joined: June 30, 2004
KitMaker: 1,331 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Monday, December 13, 2010 - 11:53 AM GMT+7
check at construction sites, i ask the job supervisor for permission, in the junk piles you find lots of things. wiring, wood, plastic packing, foil backing, its endless and the imagination makes it better.

just my two bits worth
reb
jashby
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Queensland, Australia
Joined: July 01, 2009
KitMaker: 278 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Saturday, March 26, 2011 - 01:46 AM GMT+7
Here's one for all those serving out there.

Trip wire. I actually bought mine from an Army Surplus/Disposal store years ago and it's still not even half way used. I also, once I joined up, used to save the little bobins that came with the trip flares and F1 switches. I've used it for all sorts of things like radio cabling. It is a bit to thick for engines etc but you can use it for the starter motor cabling and the battery box wiring.

Also, I think it has been mentioned so excuse me for repeating it, but the foil you get on the Milo and Ovaltine lids to "seal in the freshness".

So really good tips here that I'm going to start investigating myself.

Two thumbs up for this thread, Cheers.
Thivi11
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Ontario, Canada
Joined: January 12, 2011
KitMaker: 219 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Saturday, March 26, 2011 - 09:16 AM GMT+7
Actually just yesterday I went on a Dollar-Store rampage and bought everything I thought I had a use for in sight.

One of the better purchases was a $2 manicure tool for women. It runs on 2 AA batteries and comes with 4 "sanding" attachments and one "buffing". You can't push too hard and it's no Dremel, but for 2 bucks it's definitely useful!
flyboy92187
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Wisconsin, United States
Joined: March 30, 2011
KitMaker: 199 posts
AeroScale: 150 posts
Posted: Thursday, April 07, 2011 - 11:26 AM GMT+7
I work at a cell phone store, so when I sell cases, customers always throw out the packaging. So, I have taken to saving the foam that maintains their shape in the package. It is excellent to use as a base to stick toothpicks in that hold landing gear or other small parts. It is a soft easily workable foam, and it works great for putting in landing gear bays for masking while painting, as well as open cockpits. So, if you get a cell phone case, save the foam that is on the inside!!!
flyboy92187
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Wisconsin, United States
Joined: March 30, 2011
KitMaker: 199 posts
AeroScale: 150 posts
Posted: Thursday, April 07, 2011 - 11:28 AM GMT+7
Oh, one more thought; Beer bottle caps... Not only is it good to savor a tasty brew while working on a model, the caps work well for putting putty in for sealing gaps. Usually they have a rubber seal, so once the putty dries, just tap it out, it does not stick. I also use them for putting drops of super glue in for working with pe and other small parts.
Muftyman
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United Kingdom
Joined: March 12, 2011
KitMaker: 11 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Sunday, July 08, 2012 - 09:06 AM GMT+7
The individual containers for disposable contact lenses make great receptacles for holding small amounts of CA glue when using with an applicator (I use a length of fuse wire with a small loop twisted in the end - and capillary does the rest).
plastickjunkie
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Florida, United States
Joined: December 31, 2009
KitMaker: 362 posts
AeroScale: 132 posts
Posted: Thursday, September 20, 2012 - 02:33 PM GMT+7
These have not been mentioned:

Potato chip bags: Some come with a chrome interior that will make fantastic mirrors when punched out with a miniature punch. Headlights when the punched disc is sandwhished between the clear lens and the light body.

Reflective metallic green or blue Chip bags: Great for simulating periscope lenses in armor. Just cut to size and use clear parts cement for the lens.

Wine bottle label foil: Some wine bottles may have metal foil cap wraps that are great for making tarps, slings, fenders, etc.

Q Tips with plastic handles: These plastic handles are hollow and when held over a candle and stretched, they make tons of turnbuckles for WWI airplane rigging. The hollow cavity remains so thread can be inserted and CA'd in place.
spacewolfdad
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England - West Midlands, United Kingdom
Joined: May 23, 2010
KitMaker: 627 posts
AeroScale: 5 posts
Posted: Wednesday, December 26, 2012 - 12:18 PM GMT+7
Hi,

My wife is really into scented wax tarts that need melting with tea lights, these come in a metal container which appears to be a soft white metal (possibly aluminium) and is excellent for making fenders and other items on AFV's. I reckon it could be used for inspection hatches for aircraft as well.
chazbo38
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United States
Joined: November 27, 2012
KitMaker: 8 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Thursday, January 03, 2013 - 01:00 AM GMT+7
Ace Hardware has $1.00 Pkg of rubber bands that are the best size assortment youll find.Not free but great value.
retiredyank
#160
_VISITCOMMUNITY
Arkansas, United States
Joined: June 29, 2009
KitMaker: 10,865 posts
AeroScale: 79 posts
Posted: Wednesday, January 09, 2013 - 07:02 AM GMT+7
Single serving cream containing are excellent for use as paint cups. I've mixed enamels, lacquers and acrylics in them. So, grab some of those creamers from the local gas station/convenience store.
chazbo38
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United States
Joined: November 27, 2012
KitMaker: 8 posts
AeroScale: 0 posts
Posted: Wednesday, January 09, 2013 - 08:01 PM GMT+7
I thought this was the best deal I ever made and I paid 5 bucks incl. shipping from some nail art store on E Bay.Its agreat deal for 10 bucks.