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Thivi11
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Ontario, Canada
Joined: January 12, 2011
KitMaker: 219 posts
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Posted: Saturday, March 26, 2011 - 02:16 AM UTC
Actually just yesterday I went on a Dollar-Store rampage and bought everything I thought I had a use for in sight.

One of the better purchases was a $2 manicure tool for women. It runs on 2 AA batteries and comes with 4 "sanding" attachments and one "buffing". You can't push too hard and it's no Dremel, but for 2 bucks it's definitely useful!
jashby
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Queensland, Australia
Joined: July 01, 2009
KitMaker: 278 posts
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Posted: Friday, March 25, 2011 - 06:46 PM UTC
Here's one for all those serving out there.

Trip wire. I actually bought mine from an Army Surplus/Disposal store years ago and it's still not even half way used. I also, once I joined up, used to save the little bobins that came with the trip flares and F1 switches. I've used it for all sorts of things like radio cabling. It is a bit to thick for engines etc but you can use it for the starter motor cabling and the battery box wiring.

Also, I think it has been mentioned so excuse me for repeating it, but the foil you get on the Milo and Ovaltine lids to "seal in the freshness".

So really good tips here that I'm going to start investigating myself.

Two thumbs up for this thread, Cheers.
rebelsoldier
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Arizona, United States
Joined: June 30, 2004
KitMaker: 1,336 posts
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Posted: Monday, December 13, 2010 - 04:53 AM UTC
check at construction sites, i ask the job supervisor for permission, in the junk piles you find lots of things. wiring, wood, plastic packing, foil backing, its endless and the imagination makes it better.

just my two bits worth
reb
collin26
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Connecticut, United States
Joined: March 24, 2007
KitMaker: 317 posts
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Posted: Friday, May 07, 2010 - 04:27 PM UTC
* washed out yogurt containers are excelent for mixing pigments and resin for mud.
* I have used thin metal from take out chinese for scratch building ezhaust shrowds and fenders
* ordinary pencils work well for giving a metalic shene to the edges of worn fenders etc.
dioman13
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Indiana, United States
Joined: August 19, 2007
KitMaker: 2,184 posts
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Posted: Saturday, February 06, 2010 - 05:10 AM UTC
Here's some more. Plastic garbage bag twist ties that come in a sheet. Cut to desired size, add a backing, paint with water base glue, then paint for corrigated tin sheets. Also. as seperate ties, burn off the plastic or paper and instant antennas. They never snap like styrene and hold paint well. If they bend on the way to a show, just straighten them back. Plastic ice cube trays are real handy when builing dio's. Fantastic for lots of figures, one figure and it's equipment in one spot. Plastic pill bottles from the drug store, good for storage and shipping parts to other modlers. Dam near forgot. For us that have kids or friends with kids, the TOY BOX! A never ending supply of odd ball and weird stuff when you clean it out. You would be amazed about the little things you find in the bottom. Large wire from old broken jumper cables are great for wire trees too. Oh yea, when you by the wife flowers for what ever reason, the small filler flowers are good for things like lily pad blosoms and flowers. Furnace filters make good small filler branchs in wire trees.
retiredyank
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Arkansas, United States
Joined: June 29, 2009
KitMaker: 11,610 posts
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Posted: Tuesday, November 17, 2009 - 12:27 AM UTC
Staples work great for grab rails. Cheap pen jackets for barrells.
retiredyank
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Arkansas, United States
Joined: June 29, 2009
KitMaker: 11,610 posts
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Posted: Friday, August 28, 2009 - 01:45 AM UTC
I get used gift cards from places like Walmart, Target, Best Buy. Instant small scale styrene. Getting larger pieces free is a bit more difficult.
Tonyfr
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Ohio, United States
Joined: June 12, 2009
KitMaker: 516 posts
P47 Heaven: 0 posts
Posted: Wednesday, August 26, 2009 - 07:00 AM UTC
This is a really good thread. Wish I had read it a few weeks ago. I went and changes the strings on all my guitars. Never thought to save them to make antennas and cables.

I use the plastic apple sauce cups to mix paints etc. I use paper plates as pallets.

Tony
ouyin2000
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Alberta, Canada
Joined: December 10, 2007
KitMaker: 4 posts
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Posted: Saturday, July 04, 2009 - 07:07 PM UTC
I have recently aquired a coil of decent thickness wire. I picked up some small alligator clips from a stationary store, and attatched them to the end of a length of wire. Coil the other end of the wire, and you have a great piece for holding parts while painting, and it stands up on its own.

Also, the small medicine cups work great for mixing paint, and they're measured too. I picked up a whole tube of them from the pharmasist the other day.
Pyromaniac
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England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: January 10, 2009
KitMaker: 375 posts
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Posted: Saturday, May 23, 2009 - 06:51 AM UTC
haha lol don't worry i'm pretty sure it isn't. firstly, asbestos isn't pink, and secondly, i pinched it from the skip used by the roofing company across the road from me. The bits i used were just unused off-cuts and as asbestos is completely illegal in the UK it seems unlikely that a company would be using it new.

thanks for your concern though, unfortunately it's mostly been used up now
lespauljames
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England - South West, United Kingdom
Joined: January 06, 2007
KitMaker: 3,661 posts
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Posted: Tuesday, April 28, 2009 - 07:10 AM UTC

Quoted Text

this may also have been posted before, but the protective caps found on many deodorant and shaving foam cans to stop the button being pressed in transit make fanstastic mixing pots. i never throw them away now and have around 10 on my workbench, none of which ever seem to be clean when i need them. i also recently found a strange kind of interior wall material in a skip which consists of plasterboard, then about 2" of this odd pink foam stuff, and then a kind of fibreglass type layer on the other side. the foam is fairly strong, but rub it or press with too much force and it will turn to a powder. i seperated this and found it exellent for building up terrain for dioramas. you just rough out the shape, glue it to the base and then squash it to interesting contours. i found that a coat of PVA solved the powder issue, and if you evenly squash the fiam first it will put up more resistance to crushing later on. i should also point out that this foam is very fine grained, if that's the word, slightly more so than styrofoam.




dude that might be asbestos for gods sake dont use it just in case.!
ajkochev
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Utah, United States
Joined: June 25, 2008
KitMaker: 246 posts
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Posted: Tuesday, April 28, 2009 - 03:19 AM UTC
I use Hersey's Kiss foil wrappers for tarps and covers. Its easy to bend, paint and work with, plus the wrinkles in it look very realistic. Haven't found anything even close to the look when painted and weathered.
Pyromaniac
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England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: January 10, 2009
KitMaker: 375 posts
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Posted: Saturday, March 07, 2009 - 08:08 AM UTC
this may also have been posted before, but the protective caps found on many deodorant and shaving foam cans to stop the button being pressed in transit make fanstastic mixing pots. i never throw them away now and have around 10 on my workbench, none of which ever seem to be clean when i need them. i also recently found a strange kind of interior wall material in a skip which consists of plasterboard, then about 2" of this odd pink foam stuff, and then a kind of fibreglass type layer on the other side. the foam is fairly strong, but rub it or press with too much force and it will turn to a powder. i seperated this and found it exellent for building up terrain for dioramas. you just rough out the shape, glue it to the base and then squash it to interesting contours. i found that a coat of PVA solved the powder issue, and if you evenly squash the fiam first it will put up more resistance to crushing later on. i should also point out that this foam is very fine grained, if that's the word, slightly more so than styrofoam.
CMOT
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ARMORAMA
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England - South West, United Kingdom
Joined: May 14, 2006
KitMaker: 10,912 posts
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Posted: Monday, February 16, 2009 - 10:33 AM UTC
While following orders issued by SWMBO today I was cleaning out a wardrobe and I threw away about 200 plastic coat hangers. some of these coat hangers are the type that you get when SWMBO buys a skirt. Just cut the arms either side of the gripper and you have free clamps, I am also sure a quick plea at a clothes shop will get you more clamps than you can shake a stick at. They also have a soft pad on each side of the gripping area so they don't slip, I think these will be excellent for anyone who makes wingy thingies due to the broad gripping surface. If this has been posted before I will shut up.
lighthorseman
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South Australia, Australia
Joined: April 26, 2008
KitMaker: 84 posts
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Posted: Tuesday, February 10, 2009 - 03:06 PM UTC
i was lucky to work in a factory for a stage that used a lot of conveyor belts
one of these was made of a net type material.
the belt became cactus so i aquired my self a strip of this.
could be good for larger scale cam nets(altho thickness may be a little out of scale)

other things i have found
using glass jars(thinners water etc)
bottle caps(mixing pains)
Tanker9
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California, United States
Joined: January 31, 2009
KitMaker: 165 posts
P47 Heaven: 0 posts
Posted: Wednesday, February 04, 2009 - 03:56 PM UTC
Dunno if someone mentioned it before, but I re-use aluminum cans, plastic bottles and coffee cups by cutting them off an inch or so from the bottom and use as a mixing container for paints. Tin or aluminum is good for using to clean brushes too.

Also the plastic caps or tops can be used to mix a tiny amount of paint for touch-ups and micro-painting. You can glue them to a piece of cardboard, plastic or wood and make them virtually spill-proof too.

11Charlie
#099
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Indiana, United States
Joined: March 04, 2004
KitMaker: 926 posts
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Posted: Thursday, January 08, 2009 - 03:51 PM UTC
I take apart old watches, radios and the like for scratch building various items I need...there are tons of tiny springs, very fine copper wire, gears, wires, and countless other bits and pieces that have a number of applications in all types of modeling....for example: a pointed watch hand could be used as a knife or sword for a figure...

I sort the parts and store them in small drawer organizers.

I also save the foil from wine bottles, guitar strings and many, many other items....just in case, cause you never know when you might be able to use them
thegirl
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Alberta, Canada
Joined: January 19, 2008
KitMaker: 6,743 posts
P47 Heaven: 0 posts
Posted: Thursday, January 08, 2009 - 06:24 AM UTC
I save the wood chop sticks that come with take out Chinese food . They spilt very easy and sand fast , prefect for making wooden struts on WW1 aircraft .
jaypee
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Scotland, United Kingdom
Joined: February 07, 2008
KitMaker: 1,699 posts
P47 Heaven: 4 posts
Posted: Wednesday, January 07, 2009 - 09:16 PM UTC
Clearing up after christmas?

Hope you kept the wrappers to your chocolate coins at christmas, Nice heavy gauge foil.
The clear plastic windows of the kids toy boxes are magic for smash molding canopies.
motorbreath23
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Wisconsin, United States
Joined: December 29, 2008
KitMaker: 159 posts
P47 Heaven: 0 posts
Posted: Wednesday, January 07, 2009 - 04:19 PM UTC
I work at a bar and there are several things I take home. Plastic shot glasses and sauce cups, wooden stir sticks, cardboard and glass galore, styrofoam, the foil pop tops to juice cans have a great texture on them much like mechanics platform.
Cuhail
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Illinois, United States
Joined: February 10, 2004
KitMaker: 2,058 posts
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Posted: Wednesday, January 07, 2009 - 12:34 PM UTC

I opened a one pound can of Folgers coffee and I had to peel back a seal of heavy foil.
Heavy foil folks. VERY much like lead foil.

And there's the coffee...mmmmmmm.

Cuhail
Jmarles
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British Columbia, Canada
Joined: November 02, 2008
KitMaker: 1,137 posts
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Posted: Wednesday, January 07, 2009 - 11:40 AM UTC
That's a great idea. There are probably too many things to list however! I myself like those wooden stir sticks found at coffee places - they make great signs or building pieces.
I work in the film industry and as such an incredible amount of junk gets accumulated at the various workshops and soundstages. Scrap colour "gels" make great windows or periscopes. There is a sort of compressed, carvable foam made to build set pieces which comes in various sizes and can be made into pretty much anything. It's great for big buildings 'cos it's so light and easy to carve. There's also a very heavy black foil called "black wrap". It's great for tarps, rolls, canvases, etc. It can also be used in place of PE or plastic for straps, fender supports, etc.
bravo2
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England - East Anglia, United Kingdom
Joined: December 27, 2008
KitMaker: 13 posts
P47 Heaven: 0 posts
Posted: Wednesday, January 07, 2009 - 07:40 AM UTC
I work in a supermarket, When we do a promotion changeover we take down the old advertising boards and put up the new ones the old ones are made of a very strong plastc / card wich I find usefull for scratchbuilding....... Pop in to your local shop and ask if they have any wich they dont mind giving you
c_benshoof
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Oregon, United States
Joined: April 05, 2008
KitMaker: 122 posts
P47 Heaven: 0 posts
Posted: Monday, December 22, 2008 - 12:39 PM UTC
while this is not "free" the result is....i buy the pre sliced deli meat that comes in the reusable plastic containers such as the "glad" brand. after i eat the meat, i wash the tub out and i got me an air tight container for tool storage, parts storage, dust free paint drying container, you name it. ive got about 15 to 20 of these now....and working on my next one.
KoSprueOne
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Myanmar
Joined: March 05, 2004
KitMaker: 3,946 posts
P47 Heaven: 1 posts
Posted: Monday, October 27, 2008 - 01:35 PM UTC
great tip, I use the same stuff too