on Building Snap Kits -
Modeling is something to do for FUN. Don't take it to seriously!
Sometimes the holes where parts snap together may be to small.
You can use a sharp knife to open those holes just a bit to make
it fit better. This way you don't have to force a part, and possibly
Sometimes tiny screws are used to hold major parts together. These
are usually a philliips head, but very, very small. If you have
one of these screwdrivers, keep it handy just in case.
Car wax or polish can be used on a plastic car body, just like
a real car. ( It's best to do this on models without decals, and
before stickers are added).
It's always best, especially on the first model, to do it as a
team. let another modeler help you.
Sometimes the wheels on a model need to be mounted on to a metal
axle. This can take a lot of force. If you can't push it on by
hand, take your time with a hammer, and tap it onto the axle.
If you open the hole in the wheel just a tiny amount with a knife,
this can also help.
After the model is built, enjoy your accomplishment. There's a
lot of satisfaction, and this is true all throughout life, of
building something yourself and being proud of it.
Parts fall off. This will happen. A model is something to display
(not a toy, like a die-cast toy or a Hotwheels), and that was
how they were designed years ago. More modern type snap kits are
more forgiving, but it's still a model. As an adult, you can glue
parts together for a little more strength if you choose. Even
as an adult, and any adult modeler will tell you this, if you
handle a model, chances are, something is going to fall off,
even if you've been modelling for 50 years.
Don't judge the model. Many times adult modelers complain about
snap kits not being perfect. Few things in life are. The building
process is about problem solving, understanding printed instructions,
and having fun. Will the kits be perfect when they are done? Probably
not. But that won't effect the work and learning process along
When to move to glue kits? Kits that are not snap models require
glue and paint. With brush paints, solvents are used to clean
paint brushes of paint, and spray paint would require a paint
mask for safety. Note that the cost can go up as well, as glue
kits can be more expensive, and require more tools such as paint
brushes, and spray paint can be a significant factor.
If you build the Polar Lights Snap Batmobile,
this book, Scale Model
Life - Volume 2, has details and help on building that particular
You know that guy down the street who fixes his own car, repairs
his dish washer when it breaks, and can fix just about anything
in his garage? He probably built models when he was a kid.