How to bend curves in styrene or plastic for scale models

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g'day and welcome today's one a workshop

today I'm in the kitchen and not the

workshop and I'm gonna show you how to

bend styrene so about this curve of

styrene here and this piece here and I

want this piece to go like that to

follow the curve of the top piece of

styrene and it's just not gonna win

right there's no way I can clamp there

and then convex curve no way I can clamp

that no I can use rubber bands clothes

aids nothing so what I'm going to do

instead is Bend this piece so that it

stays like that and then it's gonna be

much much easier to stick to this piece

so the trick is you need to put it in

boiling water which is why I'm in the

kitchen so I've just bought my kettle

got a couple of ramekins and some tongs

here's my boiling hot water and I'm

gonna pop this guy in there to just

soften up a little bit don't burn

yourself whatever you do so ya pop it in

there to soften up a little bit and then

once it's soft I'm gonna put it into

this other ramekin which is roughly

around the right sort of size right

diameter for what I'm after and have it

sort of conformed to the interior curve

of that ramekin so you know I give it

about a minute or so depends on the

thickness of the styrene much thinner

styrene will get soft and Bend much more

readily than thick styrene but yeah yeah

what's that been about 45 seconds to a

minute let's fish it out and give it a


like I said before don't burn yourself

let's see how give it a tiny bit longer

mmm fascinating video you guys can sit

here and watch the steam rise yeah okay

this is not the most interesting bit but

it's a really cool technique so you can

use them on flat styrene you can use it

on rust styrene any kind of starring you

need it to bend this is the way you do

it and hold the shape basically so if

you try and Bend styrene otherwise it'll

snap on you or it will you know

temporarily Bend and it'll just spring

back to well it's originally mold of

ours it's got a pretty strong memory

this stuff you know let's try that pop

it in King if you had some kind of

tricky way so that's it in there if you

have something a tricky way of keeping

it in that space great you have you had

another ramekin to put in on top of it

or something to hold it in there

probably a really good idea but for you

guys so you can actually see I'm trying

not to do that today and it doesn't take

more for it to cool down and stay anyway

and look it's not going to be perfect

to that shape once I take it out once

it's cooled it's taken out it will

spring back flat a tiny bit but it's

going to be much much easier not quite

doing much much easier once it's got

that bend in it then without right so

I'm gonna do this again heat up some

more water sometimes you have to do this

sometimes it just takes a bit you know a

couple of turns do it again and show you

in a ticks lead I have to sit here and

watch the water steam okay that's been

in freshly steamed water but freshly

boiled water for about two minutes let's

take it out I was also thinking I might

try a small radius thing to put it into

to try and keep its curve so let's see

how we go again burn yourself it's

pretty flexible pop this guy yeah that's

probably better actually because there's

no way can really um spring from that or

isn't that one it was kind of I'm

springing itself does that make sense

yeah there was nothing holding it in

place so that doesn't look like the same

radius as that but once it comes out

what's all nice and cool down

once it comes out it's going to spring

back to shape a little bit and I reckon

we're gonna end up about there let's see

I'll leave it to cool down and here we

are once it's cooled down so it's

definitely sprung out further than what

I expected from that regular swing that

bigger than what it was but that is

gonna hold on pretty nicely for me once

I glue that in it'll take its shake

fairly easily yeah I'll glue it together

and show you what I mean and he is the

finished result

so it's stuck really nicely onto that

curved piece that I needed it to stick

to there's no way I could have done that

and all I've done is I've used some CA

glue put a little bit on the edge there

stuck it down there waited 30 seconds

for that to dry stuff a bit more on

their push the other side in waited 30

seconds to dry that's it there's no

bracing or anything on the back just a

bit of glue that I've glued in there to

keep it holding it and yeah it's worked

a treat some other examples this piece

here I bent a piece of styrene rod so

that was a long straight piece I wanted

to go into this little black socket so

bent it and it's worked another piece

that I have is this piece of styrene

that's bent on the front here so done

exactly the same thing heated it up in

boiling water and it's kept its shape

now for five months that's how long it's

taking me to build this thing but yeah

it's working really well

and one final piece is this little bent

piece on the top here so this piece just

here yeah flat piece of styrene

petered it up holds its shape forever

now I hope that's been helpful to you

it's a really easy Technic and it gets

you out of a lot of scrapes this would

have been just a nightmare to try and do

otherwise it would sprung out at least

wanted it to even if the glue would have

held it wouldn't have held for a long

time and come back to shape but now it's

gonna stay like that for me

and it's not gonna give me any grief um

if you have any questions give me a yell

otherwise I hope this has been helpful

to you and I'll see you next time on

Dave's model workshop

cheers guys