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Tip on molded-in gas tanks

Tip: Ken, I was reading your column’s question about molded-in gas tanks, which is one of my pet peeves with models. I generally cut out the tank by scribing the edges with the back of a No. 11 blade and replacing the void, after squaring it up, with a piece of shower- and-tub-surround plastic.

This particular plastic is about 1⁄16 inch thick, and usually comes in white (color doesn’t matter, because it will be painted). There is usually a cutout for a window in most bathroom remodeling jobs, and this cutout piece will yield a sizeable sheet to work with. Most sheets will be the same thickness as the areas to be patched.

I also use this material to make blocks that are placed in the corners of the tank to support a piece that creates the missing gas-tank top, even though it won’t be seen. Then I cut the straps from real metal, because it is easier to bend.

You might try asking a family member or friend who does this type of work. I’m sure they’ll be glad to give up this treasure trove of material that would normally be tossed into the trash.

Dennis Scheidemantle

 
Ken:
Thanks, Dennis. You know how we’re always looking for inexpensive solutions to modeling dilemmas.  
Even if you don’t know someone in “The Business,” a trip to a local construction site might turn up some scraps that could last a long time.

The key, as we love to stress, is looking for building material and ideas from sources other than car-model suppliers. 

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