This page contains important information about model assembly. If you want to know how to turn a plain virtual image into a concrete object, read below attentively. After reading the text you may want to see the Flash animation that shows explicitly every step of the assembly process. Note: If you want to assemble a bus or a coach click the link above.
» Required tools
To turn the virtual images that you have downloaded from this site into a concrete object, you will need the following:
» Colour printer
» Paper (two times thicker than office paper) - 160 g/sq m
» Weak fluid adhesive
» A small body of polystyrene (recommended), clay, plasticine, wax, or of any other similar material
» Sharp cutting tool (cutter or razor blade),
and, above all, a lot of patience.
1. Sizing and printing
Open any program that allows sizing a bitmap while maintaining its original quality (number of pixels). Such a program is Microsoft® Word, CorelDRAW!, Adobe PageMaker, Wordpad, and many others.
Copy the image of the car that you want to assemble into clipboard by right-clicking on it and choosing "Copy". Then paste it in the program (Choose "Paste" from the "Edit" menu).
You may use the rulers in the program to determine the dimensions (length and width) of the car. Resize the model to the desired scale. You can copy and paste multiple models in the program workspace.
When you're done choose "Print" from the "File" menu to print your model. For the best results, print the models in 1:87 scale or smaller (1:100, TT - 1:120, etc.), at 720x720 dpi or more, in colour, on glossy or photo paper. We suggest using a laser or thermal printer for this job.
2. Cutting and folding
After printing the page, cut the model on the very edge with a small scissors. Be careful not the cut off parts of the printed surface. Also cut the detached wheels on their edge. Leave the wheels aside.
Fold the paper on the edges shown. Fold towards the blank side on the egdes between the base and the sides of the vehicle. Note that different car types fold in different ways.
To figure out exacly how to fold the front and rear sections of the model, take the left and right sides of the vehicle as a guideline.
3. The support body
If you want your paper model to look and feel more realistic (and I'm sure you do), you must glue the printed paper to a mass of material to give and maintain its shape.
You can use any material that meets the following demands:
» Can be easily carved or cut
» Maintains its shape when stressed
» Is non-toxic and non-hazardous
» Contains no or a little amount of fluid
» Can be easily glued to paper using a weak adhesive
Here are some materials that fit these requirements along with their pros and cons:
» Polystyrene (foam). This material, in foam state, is inexpensive, non-toxic, lightweight, bright white, highly resistant, rejects heat, almost instantly glues to paper, and, even more, is very easy to find (look in the cardboard box of your TV, monitor, or of other devices). I've tried to find its downsides, but I didn't succeed in doing it.
» Plasticine. The only material used to make models before discovering polystyrene. It can be easily cut, it maintains its shape over a long period of time, but it is too oily, and may smear the paper.
» Clay. Should it be too moist, it may damage the paper, and when it's dry it is hard to cut.
» Wax. It it oily, and can be easily melt by heat.
» Wood. It is dry, solid, but very hard to carve in comparison with the other materials.
Now you have to shape the solid body (made from a material from above). To do this you need a sharp cutting tool, (a paper cutter - recommended, or a razor blade). Put the material on the blank side of the base, as shown in the Flash animation. Cut off the excess material until you obtain a rectangular body having the length and width equal to the car's dimensions.
Now fold the sides of the model on the rectangular body. Cut off the excess material with the tool until the solid body exceeds the paper sides of the model no more.
4. Gluing and completing the model
Remove the body and put it aside. Apply the adhesive to the paper. Be careful not to use too much adhesive.
Put the body back on the paper, and fold the paper on in. Press on the paper to make it stick to the body.
Your model is almost complete. All you have to do now is stick the previously cut wheels to the body. Apply adhesive to every wheel, then place them in their proper places and press on them. Keep the model on one side until the adhesive dries, then place it on a flat surface.