TIP: Wrap It

If you have ever had to pick up and hold your model while you continue the build process after it or parts of it have been paint and doing so risks leaving unwanted fingerprints in the paint or on the plastic, then keep reading. Here is a TIP which you will find useful!

The next time you venture into the grocery store, stroll through the produce department and take a peek at those fruits that are wrapped in foam mesh sleeves. If they are delicate enough to protect fruit from its home lands to grocery stores around the globe, it probably has other applications. It does, at your modeling workbench!

These tubular foam mesh sleeves are slipped around fruit to protect them, so I decided to see what applications they’d have in my workshop. Initially I knew they would make a unique paint mask similar to using net material I’ve used in the past to create some cool camo schemes. In this case however the best use of this stretchy foam sleeve material is to allow handling of the model without your hands making contact with the surface.

Simply slip the sleeve over the model. It is easily removed by slicing with  a sharp hobby knife. This will allow you to continue assembly without having to remove it first, just open up the area where you need to work.

As I said I sourced these from the produce department of my grocery store. You don’t really have to buy the fruit which are wrapped, as many shoppers strip the sleeves off the fruit they are purchasing, so there are usually extras laying in the display bin. Just add them to the plastic bag which you have filled with other fruits or veggies, they weigh nothing and will be discarded anyway with the rest of the packaging material. Maybe ask the Produce Manager to collect a bag full for you!

Another frugal way to re-purpose or recycle something that makes scale modeling more enjoyable. Did I mention that they also protect! Ideal for packing models away for storage or shipment too! And…hold assemblies together such as this body to chassis…snug light squeezing pressure to hold it together while the cement cures.


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