Model Building Guide for Beginners

Model Building for Beginners Level

writer: Jedikat

Growing up in my house there were no cell phones and kids had to do things with their hands. You learned to get creative and sometimes that meant you got into trouble. If you want to get those kids off the cell phones and tablets you need to give them something to do. A great hobby that I got into and passed onto my kids is model building. It takes patience and time, and keeps everyone away from the electronics (at least for a little while). It also teaches attention to detail, and fine motor skills as well. Everything are great skills for real life, but model building is fun too because you start with just parts and end up with a model of something great.

Which Model Kits to Choose?

There are various model kits to choose from and the come in all shapes and sizes. The majority of them come in three types and they include cars, planes, and ships. model-buliding-carThere are trucks, space vehicles, Star Wars and Star Trek models and various others from assorted movies and television shows as well. What you need to understand about models is that the box contains all the parts to build it, along with the instructions, but little or nothing else. You will need some supplies in order to build the model with, but before we go into that you need to understand that there are different levels to model building as well.

Models are typically found in three levels, beginner, intermediate and hard or expert. A beginner model might be a snap model, which means that you can build it without tools, or glue as the parts all snap together. (An expert level model builder will tell you though that even a snap model is better built with glue and more details.) The intermediate level models are a little more advanced and none of the parts snap together. The difference between the intermediate and the expert level models is that the intermediate might have parts that are put together for you already. The expert level is the hardest and you will have to put everything together. Don’t throw away anything in the box until you are absolutely sure it won’t be needed. Sometimes there are parts that get neglected in the instructions or that show you only a brief image of what needs to go where.

It’s easy to tell what the model level is as they are generally listed on the box. If you don’t see it on the front it will say it on the back. Typically models that follow a movie or show are easy ones, cars are intermediate to expert, ships the same unless it is an older model that has sails. Those models are the hardest, but can be the most fun to put together.

Items That You Will Need

model-building-kitYou are going to need some supplies before you get started on that model and it all depends on how much you want to get into it. The first thing you are going to need is enough space to spread the parts out so you can get to them and not lose them. About the same amount of space, you would use for a puzzle will be just fine. Also you are going to want to keep the box top so you can see what you are building (The finished product) on the table in front of you. But other than that you are going to need the following items:

* Xacto Knife
* Drop Cloth or plastic sheet
* Model Glue* Paints (See below)
* Paint Thinner
* Small cup of water
* Paintbrushes

The drop cloth or plastic sheet goes under everything so be sure to lay it out before you start taking parts out of the box. Then you are going to want to place everything on top of it, with the water on one of the corners and out of the way. This is used for your brushes or decals if the model has any and won’t be used until the model is finished.

About Painting

Painting the model building

Some deluxe model kits will come with paints matching the colors that the model should have. Most don’t though and you will have to buy your own paints. Paints come in individual colors and can be purchased by themselves or in a set. A set will contain between 5 and twelve colors along with paint thinner, a paintbrush and a plastic drop cloth. Some kits are even designed to be for different types of vehicles so you can match the tones perfectly with the model you are building. These types of paints however are not washable so be careful as they are just as bad as nail polish and will stick to anything. This is what the paint thinner is for and you can also use it to remove paint from your model if you messed up on your paint job. The easier model kits don’t require paint as they will instead be colored right out of the box. Instead they will come with decals only that you can put on the model once it is complete.

If using the decals be sure and cut out each one as they are applied with water. It will make it easier to apply them if they are cut separately and will keep you from ruining the other decals in the process. For paints it is best to purchase your own brushes instead of the one that comes in with the kit. This brush is decent but is only good for medium to large areas and not for fine tuning.

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