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Starship Modeler: Tech Library

This section contains the reference materials, how-to and how-do-I information, and reader submitted tips, tricks and techniques we've been able to assemble. Do you have something you'd like to contribute? Drop us a line!

Tips, Tricks and Techniques

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How-To Articles


  • Building and Painting Resin Models - Scott Scariot takckles a basic resin kit in this step-by-step how-to.
  • Building and Painting Vinyl Models - Larry Johnson walks us through the tricks of building vinyl models.
  • Paper Model Assembly Tips and Techniques - David Allen provides helpful advice on building paper models.
  • Removing Chrome Plating - Mike Paquette's eco-friendly way to remove chrome from plastic parts.
  • Working With Photo Etch - John Lester lays out the basics of working with PE metal parts.
  • Working With Clear Parts - John Lester lays out the basics of working with clear plastic parts.
  • Filling Seams with CA & Baking Soda - John Lester lays out the basics offiling seams with Baking Soda and CA.


  • Airbrush 101 -Terry Miesle presents a primer on airbrushes
  • Using Reaper Acrylics - Terry Miesle puts Reaper's acrylic paint line to the test.
  • Painting Small Scale Figures - Vince Hoffman presents various techniques for making a 120mm figure come alive.
  • Painting Engraved Detail - Marco Scheloske describes an alternative to the traditional wash.
  • Silly Putty Masks - Rich Dula demonstrates how to use silly putty as a masking medium.
  • Painting With Oils - Mark Yungblut covers the basics of using oil paints on figures.
  • Masking with Parafilm - Terry Miesle demonstrates how to use Parafilm as a masking medium (video).


  • Weathering 101 - Alfred Wong demonstrates his approach to weathering sci-fi models.
  • Washes/Drybrushing - Mike Paquette describes the basics of these techniques.
  • Battle Damage - Terry Miesle describes battle damage techniques for starships.
  • Tamiya & Gunze Weathering Sets - Erin Lantz demonstrates how to use weatehring pigments and paint markers.


  • Scratchbuilding 101 - AJ Madison teaches an entry level course on scratchbuilding basics. It's not as hard as you think!
  • Scratchbuilding Demystified - Mark Yungblut details, step-by-step, how to complete a scratchbuilding project, using a Battletech mech as an example.
  • Print, Cut, Glue - Clyde Jones describes a simple method for scratchbuilding using printed templates.
  • Scratchbuilding with Pro-Mat - Erin Lantz gives an in-depth look at how to use bakeable clays to scratchbuild ships, figures and more.
  • Molding & Casting For Beginners - Jay Curtiss shows one method for making one- or two- part ambient pressure molds.
  • Using Epoxy Putty to Duplicate Parts - Terry Miesle details a method for using epoxy putty to duplicate parts for conversions.
  • Casting Hollow Parts - Brian Dainty shows one method for casting hollow parts in resin.
  • Vacuforming 101 - Jack Wendt shows how to vacuform a scratchbuilt Whitestar model.
  • Scratchbuilding with Cardboard - Brad Torgeson explains how to build using alternatative materials.
  • Scratchbuilding with Resin - Jack Wendt explains how he built an Excalibur using mostly resin.
  • Scribing & Popping Styrene - Clyde Jones explains an easy method for making parts from sheet styrene.
  • Sculpting Female Figures - Alfred Wong's tips for sculpting the female form in any scale.
  • Sculpting Female Figures: Part 2 - Alfred Wong details how he sculpted a large scale figure, with in-progress photos.
  • Replicating Small Details - Doug Cowles demonstrates a simple technique for replicating small details using the AMT Enterprise-A.
  • Making Your Own Photoetched Details - Frank Henriquez walks through techniques for making your own PE details.
  • Making Your Own Stonework Base - Tom Kowaliski provides an in-depth look at building cool faux-stone bases.
  • Laser Turret From A Lighter - Tyler Robbins makes use of the greeblies inside disposable lighters.

    Lighting and Electronics

  • Wireless Lighting - Keith Brenton's superb article on creating the illusion of lights without electric components (reprinted from QSFM).
  • LED Lighting Basics - Lighting with LEDs: a primer by Michael Smith.
  • Lighting Effects with 4060 Chips and LEDs - Clyde Jones explains how to make blinking and other effects using 4060 chips and LEDs.
  • MadMan Lighting's Deluxe 8 Lighting Kit, as reviewed by Pat Amaral
  • MadMan Lighting's Starship Lighting Kit, as reviewed by Pat Amaral
  • Inexpensive and Plentifull LEDs - Clyde Jones shows how to harvest LEDs from inexpensive Christmas tree light sets


  • Photography for Modelers - Clyde Jones talks about the basics in exhaustive detail.
  • Digital Cameras: A Primer - Jack Wendt shares what he's learned.
  • Photo Platform - Clyde Jones builds a stand for photographing models - and punching up the results.

    Other Material

  • Homemade Spray Booth/Indoor Filter - Pat Amaral and the CoMMiES show how to make your own spray booth and indoor paint filter.
  • Book, Tool and Other Reviews


    Decals & Templates

    Paper Kits & Backgrounds


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