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Glues and solders

Blue ballChoosing glues and solders

The choice of a particular glue or solder is often a personal preference, built up over years of experience. These recommendations are suggestions for beginners to try but are not exclusive of other possibilities. Many glues have different manufacturers and are sold under different brand names in other countries. Postal restrictions on solvents and chemicals may prevent them being posted between countries.

Soldering is a skill that grows with a great deal of practice. As such, it is not recommended that a beginner use soldering on a first whitemetal kit as it is very easy to end up with a melted mass of metal that used to be a beautifully cast whitemetal kit. It is suggested that glues are easier to use for the first few kits.

Blue ball Glues

Many glues can be used with paper, card, wood and plastic but fewer are suitable and strong enough for use with metals. Those that have been found to work include:

Blue ballSolders

Soldering is an advanced technique but in the hands of an expert it can produce excellent neat and strong results. The metal parts need to be clean and free from oxide to produce a good joint. Flux is used to help clean the parts in order to help the melted solder to flow and produce a good joint. It is probably best to practice extensively on scrap parts before tackling a real model kit.

The whitemetal model often uses a lead/tin 60:40 alloy with a melting point of about 185°C, so this is a critical temperature for soldering. Other models may use pewter, which is nearly pure tin, with a slightly higher melting point. It is helpful to have a temperature-controlled soldering iron to avoid overheating and melting the kit parts.

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