Where To Get Useful Items 1 - Compiled by Chris McCarthy

Originally published at Scaleforum 2004.

This page shows some items and materials that members of the Scalefour Society have found really useful but which do not seem to be normally available through conventional model railway supply sources.
At least one known supplier is mentioned for each item; there may well be others not yet known to the organising team.

The "usual disclaimer" that the Scaleforum organisers and the Scalefour Society have no connection other than as satisfied customers, applies to all items and to all suppliers.


Hobby's Ltd Catalogue

2010 Hobby Catalogue Cover We can't help featuring this annual catalogue which is a veritable treasure of "cross-over" items for many hobbies, but little specifically for model railways - that's one reason it interests us! Many of the items on display have been sourced from Hobby's, as through this catalogue they seem amongst the most accessible suppliers, by phone, web, post or personal visit.

Origin : U.K
Available from: Hobby's Ltd Website or phone 020 8761 4244. Catalogue is also often found in larger branches of W.H Smith's, in the magazines section (don't mistake it for a Hobbies of Dereham publication - although that's interesting in itself!).


Alumilite Casting Resin

Alumilite Casting Resin A 2-part liquid which when mixed sets hard in a few minutes. Can make a copy of almost anything from simple moulds made from common materials. Totally machinable, drillable etc. when hard.

Press your master in, say, modelling clay, mix and pour Alumilite - and the duplicate is available in 3 minutes! Various filler powders are available for bulking up, for metalising the moulding etc. Useful also as a repair agent, as it flows easily and set hard.

Origin : U.S.A
Available from: Hobby's Ltd


Hobby Time Silicone Moulding

Hobby Time Silicone Moulding A 2-part silicone rubber mould making compound for any moulding purpose up to 400deg C.

Ideal for using the Prince August casting metal etc. and can, of course, be used for any cold casting or chemical based casting such as Alumilite. Moulds can be reused scores of times.

Origin: Switzerland
Available from: Hobby's Ltd


Prince August Model Metal

Prince August Model Metal A hobby oriented casting metal designed to be used on the home cooker. (But do buy a cheap saucepan or ladle for the job!!).

Melts at 138deg C. Very easy to use in conjunction with the correct grade of silicone moulding compound.

Origin: Ireland
Available from: Hobby's Ltd


Simoniz Spray Putty

Prince August Model Metal This putty is absolutely excellent for building up or filling metal parts, scratches and joints.

Can be moulded around or to metal and finishes extremely smooth. Perfect for coating wire-formed model trees, it has for example also made tapered telegraph poles out of plain brass rod.

Origin: U.K
Available from good car accessory shops.

Hafixs Cyano Glue

Hafixs Cyano Glue No apologies for another cyano glue! Unlike so many cyanos, though, this one keeps for ages when stored in the fridge. It also seems to be extraordinarily effective on a wide range of materials.

Origin: Germany
Available from: Hafixs Industrial Products www.hafixs.co.uk or phone 020 8969 8475


Metal Bonding Kit

Metal Bonding Kit Soldering is not always the answer but many cyano glues are not always very effective when joining metal, especially sheet material. This 3 part kit, based on the "Roket" products better known in military modelling, largely solves this problem.

Origin: Germany
Available from Hobby's Ltd and most good military modelling suppliers.

Quick Setting PVA Glue

PVA Glue The traditional white glue - but this one sets in a very few minutes, so is much more convenient when time is short or a fixing needs to be completed.

Origin: U.K Available from: Hobby's Ltd


Tacky Wax

Tacky Wax Excellent for fixing down model figures or other items that need temporary or permanent gluing. Breaking a joint in a non-damaging way is often required, say, after painting a figure stuck to scrap.
On a layout some things just seem inherently vulnerable, needing continual reglueing. Once the joint is broken, the soluble wax is easily removed.

Origin: U.S.A

Available from: Hobby's Ltd



Eduard Fine Etched Steel Mesh

Etched Steel Mesh The display samples just one of a vast range of Eduard's superbly fine etched meshes and other details produced for the military modelling hobby. Arguably, these are the crème de la crème of stainless steel etching. The web site shows the whole range - and almost wants to make you change hobby!

Origin: Czech Republic

Available from: LSA Models, Sussex www.lsamodels.co.uk, phone 01273 423523



Incra Precision Marking Rules

Incra Rules Mark out your work very precisely by using the pinholes and slots etched into this invaluable tool at 0.25mm spacing. The 300mm displayed T-Rule version is the largest. A smaller T-Rule as well as straight rules in different lengths and a protractor are also available. (Imperial versions are available in the U.S.A).

Origin: U.S.A

Available from: Axminster Tools Ltd www.axminster.co.uk, phone 0800 371822



Scribing Templates

Scribing templates Beautifully etched stainless steel templates for marking and cutting out. From China's Lionroar Art Model Co. Perfect to ensure consistency.
The display shows two types in a range aimed at military modellers.

Origin: China

Available from: Lou Stener Model Supplies, www.modelkitsupplier.co.uk.



Scribing Tool for Plastic

Scribing tool for plastic This excellent tool actually removes a hair of plastic on each scribing movement, unlike using a blade or a normal scriber. These latter tend to displace the plastic and therefore cause distortion and a markedly "V-shaped" groove. This tool avoids such problems.

Origin: U.S.A

Available from: Hobby's Ltd



Electrically Conductive Tape

Electrically conductive tape Designed for the dolls house hobby, this 5amp rated dual-core tape is ideal for low voltage electrical connections when wires are unsightly or inappropriate. Perfect for interior lighting of fitted-out model buildings, as a bus-bar for carriage interior lights, under baseboards etc.

Origin: U.S.A

Available from: Hobby's Ltd and any dolls house hobby supplier.


Small Hollow Brass Eyelets

Originally for use with the electrically conductive tape (see above). Just press an eyelet through the tape, solder in a feed wire and the connection is made. The eyelets surely have many other uses in our hobby.

Origin: U.S.A

Available from: Hobby's Ltd



Miniature Tube Bender

Electrically conductive tape Plumbers use bending springs to bend pipe without crushing. These little benders allow model sized metal tube to be bent smoothly, a normally difficult job.

Origin: U.S.A

Available from: Hobby's Ltd



Plastic Polish

Plastic Polish Use this to polish out small scratches in modelling plastics or as a finisher to filled or jointed assemblies.
Made for the model aircraft market, for us it is especially good for restoring clear plastics such as diesel loco windscreens, carriage windows etc.

Origin: U.S.A

Available from: Hobby's Ltd



Turntable Ring

Turntable Ring A simple, well made and good value, turntable ring available in several sizes (the 4inch size is displayed). Use it with an MDF board or plywood top to make up a simple stand for easy airbrushing all round a model, or for display.

Origin: U.S.A

Available from: Hobby's Ltd


Balsaboard and 0.8mm plywood

Balsaboard and 0.8mm plywood Paper laminate faced balsaboard, shown here in 3mm and 6mm thickness (others are available), is a most versatile and stable material. It has many potential uses.

We also show 0.8mm 3-ply wood, a staple of earlier modellers but often overlooked today. We think this a mistake, as thin plywood of this type (it comes also in 1.6mm) is another amazingly versatile and stable material. Anyway, this display just reminds you of its existence!

Origin: Various. Available from: Hobby's Ltd (balsaboard and ply).
Ply also from good model shops, especially those for aircraft modelling.


AMI Instant Roadbed

A resilient trackbed with self-adhesive qualities on both sides. Easy to lay and cut and helps dampen noise. Track holds well without pinning; ballast can be applied direct without further glueing.

Origin: U.S.A

Available from: Hobby's Ltd

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P87 and Tramway Track Systems

Scalefour Society member Andy Reichert from California supports P87 by producing track systems, fittings and proprietary H0 track enhancements.

He also produces an interesting line in tramway track parts, which can be spaced for any 3.5/4mm finescale gauge. Handy also in docks and factory models.

Some Scalefour Society members wanted to see these close to - so Andy has made up samples from his range for our inspection.

Origin: U.S.A Available from: Supplier's Web site: www.proto87.com

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