How do you wash a big cat?

rickoshea52

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In preparation for building the Airfix 1/24 Hellcat I need to start with washing off any release agent or other surface contaminants. Now, if you’re not familiar with this kit the sprues are massive. So while the kitchen sink might be acceptable for the kids (that’s where I had a bath as a child) it just won’t accommodate this big cat.
Time for the big bath, some fairy liquid and a soft brush.
Everyone knows to wash the plastic before building a kit so what’s my quick tip? I have this redundant IKEA dish rack which just happens to be perfect for drying the sprues after a wash. I’ll also use it as a sprue rack when the build starts.
The other tip is you can save time and soap if you chuck the kids in too.

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yak face

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Thats a lot of sprues rick! Good job its a big drying rack .
 

Tworrs

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Goodness me that is a lot of sprue, I like idea of using the Ikea rack for holding the sprues whilst building, I always have every surface covered in them.
Great idea, thanks.
Garry
 

arb65912

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I need to start with washing off any release agent or other surface contaminants.
What soap should be used? And in what concentration?
I am a total newbie, so I did not wash it. :flushed:

I can do it now, but some parts are glued together (elevator halves for example) and there is a hole so water can get inside while washing. How do I make sure there is no water left after the drying?
 

Tim Marlow

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What soap should be used? And in what concentration?
I am a total newbie, so I did not wash it. :flushed:

I can do it now, but some parts are glued together (elevator halves for example) and there is a hole so water can get inside while washing. How do I make sure there is no water left after the drying?
Not a huge problem, some people don’t wash them at all. I like to, especially if I’m using acrylic paint, but if you are using enamel or lacquer paint its not essential. You can just wash it when it’s built, by the way, and before you try to paint it Andrzej.
Normal dish washing soap used at the same concentration you use for your household washing up will be fine. Cold water is best though. Plastic can distort in hot water.
If water can get in, it can also get out…..if you are worried about getting the water out, don’t immerse the model, just wipe the surface down with a sponge and rinse it the same way…
 

stillp

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You could just wipe it down with alcohol and a tissue.
Pete
 

Ian M

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You could just wipe it down with alcohol and a tissue.
Pete
Just make sure the alcohol is not to strong. Even IPA can mark plastic if very high concentration.
 

outrunner

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Just do whatever you think, I have never washed kit spues before building and had no problems, perhaps I am just lucky?

Andy.
 

Gern

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Let the bubbles die away BEFORE you empty the bath! That way you will be able to see and collect any parts that may have fallen off the sprue.
Ask me how I learned that!
 

boatman

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WELL ive built loads of kits over my 60 odd yrs of model makin an ive never washed the sprues down dint know it was needed to an ive had no problems with building them or painting them but i must admit ive never had a airbrush an all this bussiness of thinnin down the paint so thats my take on it an an this last kit of a seaking i dint wash it off but it built after a fashion as a bad fit kit but it got built an spray painted an no probs
chrisb
 

stillp

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IPA you mean Isopropyl Alcohol? How about 70%?
I've used 99% IPA without any problems. With lower purities, such as 70%, you have to hope that the other 30% is pure water!
Just make sure the alcohol is not to strong. Even IPA can mark plastic if very high concentration.
Ian, have you actually had this happen? Were the plastic parts immersed or just wiped?

I don't always wash sprues before starting assembly, but a couple of times when I haven't, I've found the first coat of paint doesn't 'take' properly. When that happens I've used IPA on a cotton bud to clean off any grease or mould release agent.
Pete
 
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