Author Topic: Working with Styrene Sheets  (Read 4917 times)

Offline BrentS

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Re: Styrene Sheets
« Reply #15 on: April 30, 2006, 03:36 PM »
Thanks guys, I stumbled onto these brands as I was googling.  I wonder if Hobbylobby would carry these?  I've got one of those pretty close.  There is a Hobbytown USA about 20 minutes away but its in the middle of nowhere.

Offline Smartypants1635

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Re: Styrene Sheets
« Reply #16 on: April 30, 2006, 03:40 PM »
My hobby Lobby in my town is crap when I asked for styrene they said that there was no such thing. Pretty much the response you got. Even if its out in the middle of No where Id say hit the Hobby town.
« Last Edit: April 30, 2006, 03:40 PM by Smartypants1635 »

Offline CHEWIE

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Re: Styrene Sheets
« Reply #17 on: April 30, 2006, 04:01 PM »
From what I've seen the large hobby chains just don't carry styrene for whatever reason.  Small shops do and online shopping is a good idea.  And Owen D is the guy to talk to for tips!

 :)

Offline Nirvana

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Re: Styrene Sheets
« Reply #18 on: April 30, 2006, 05:12 PM »
HobbyTownUSA is my one-stop customizing shop when it comes for knives, Dremel bits, and Styrene. It's the only hobby shop I've been to that carries it. There's a section with just plain strips, tubes, and sheets and another one with textured- concrete, brick. etc.
My whole expanse...I cannot see...

Offline Jesse James

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Re: Styrene Sheets
« Reply #19 on: April 30, 2006, 06:26 PM »
Hobbytown USA is your best bet, however buying sheet styrene in quantity at hobby stores isn't wise.  It's very expensive.

Sheet ABS Styrene is just paper-like sheets of plastic.  You can get varying thicknesses and dimensions...  Shapes and things are available too.  Finding a well stocked plastics rack is tough in my area, and so far only HobbyTown has everything I need, but it's on the other side of the city so I go rarely.

It's not cheap buying sheets of styrene at the hobby shop though, so be warned....

I was at WM the other day and in the clearance area they had those "for sale" signs, or "No Trespassing" signs.  They were like $1 for the bigger signs, and a whopping $.25 for thin smaller signs.  These are simply ABS Styrene Sheets with printing on one side...  Perfectly useable though.

I have a plastics distributor I get my plastic from in bulk though.  A single trip when I can borrow a pick-up will supply me with plastic for quite a while.  Check the Yellow Pages for Plastics or Plastic Distributors and you should have some good luck.

BTW I suggest getting a good plastic welder if you're going to work with Styrene.  Glues like Krazy Glue and whatnot don't actually do much but bond the two pieces, whereas welders actually fuse sheet styrene, and make it much MUCH more durable.  Pricey but worth it.

Oh, and don't get styrene too thick...  Cutting is easy if it's not TOO thick.  When you get too thick though, you're going to require a saw to cut, and things become more complex.
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Offline BrentS

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Re: Styrene Sheets
« Reply #20 on: May 1, 2006, 01:54 PM »
Thanks for all the helpful advice!

I went ahead a drove out to see what I could find.  I picked up a few supplies.  Based on Jesse's comments I expected them to be even more expensive than they already were.  However, given what I actually was able to pick up, I suppose he's probably right.  I got a few pieces to play with to see if it is something that I can use.

Offline Jesse James

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Re: Styrene Sheets
« Reply #21 on: May 2, 2006, 04:31 AM »
What I do is generally buy my shapes at hobby stores...  I look elsewhere for sheet though.  Like I said, price a house for sale sign at WM.  Check the clearance aisles even.  I got two nice sized signs on the cheapy cheap just the other day.  $1 each isn't bad at all, and this is fairly thick stuff too compared to the sheets I can get at HTUSA out here.  Still thin enough to score cut it, but much thicker than the 8x10 sheets I see at the hobby stores for certain.

For the detailed bits though I go to the hobby store...  It's just easier for me, and often I don't need a LOT of one shape I've found.  Some I could but eh, I deal.
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Offline jediraven82

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Re: Styrene Sheets
« Reply #22 on: May 3, 2006, 02:55 PM »
I bought one of those cermaic tile scorers for my house last week, how would that work for cutting styrene?  So far, its sucked for tile, but maybe it won't be a complete waste afterall.

Offline BrentS

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Re: Styrene Sheets
« Reply #23 on: May 3, 2006, 07:28 PM »
I took Jesse's advice and stopped by WM to look for styrene.  I found a really good size sheet for $1.  Seems like a pretty good price.  I'm assuming once the white side is painted you won't see the black through the back side.  Anyway, just wanted to say thanks for the advice!!


Offline CHEWIE

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Re: Styrene Sheets
« Reply #24 on: May 3, 2006, 08:23 PM »
I bought one of those cermaic tile scorers for my house last week, how would that work for cutting styrene?  So far, its sucked for tile, but maybe it won't be a complete waste afterall.

I don't know, but I'd love to hear how it goes!

And great idea JJ on the signs.

 :)

Offline Jesse James

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Re: Styrene Sheets
« Reply #25 on: May 4, 2006, 12:57 AM »
Dunno Jediraven82...  Long time no see by the way. :)

I've never seen one of those tools to know.  Basically though, anything like a box cutter can score plastic just fine.  When it's thin enough you score it, then just bend and it snaps right off cleanly.

If it's REALLY thin plastic you'll go right through it with too much pressure when scoring so be weary of that.

As far as painting goes Brent, styrene is what the old SW figure torsoes were made out of (the 2-parters).  That's a rigid ABS plastic.  It takes any kind of paint...  If you're fearful of the black showing through, prime it and you'll avoid the issue.  Generally vehicles don't have TOO much PVC style plastics on them.  For instance on the Naboo Fighter from Hasbro the ship's 90% a styrene-like plastic.  The engine tips and tail though, are a pliable plastic as you know most likely, and they aren't going to react to all paints well.  The rigid ABS paints with most anything I've found though.
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Offline BrentS

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Re: Styrene Sheets
« Reply #26 on: May 4, 2006, 08:10 AM »
Thanks Jesse.  Seems like I found a new Plastics expert  ;)

Offline Jesse James

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Re: Styrene Sheets
« Reply #27 on: May 5, 2006, 06:33 PM »
N/P Brent, I'm glad to help...  Ships/Vehicles/Sets have been a focus of mine since it required nothing to get started that I need for my figure work so I have about 90 half-finished projects laying around, haha.  :)

Plus I've got experience in plastics and things professionally and model making and whatnot from my childhood.  I'm happy to share any help I can to the guys branching out that way.  Scratch-Building is a very satisfying aspect of customizing...  I like it sometimes more than working on figures I think, because there's more creativity involved sometimes IMO.  I feel sometimes limited when working on a figure.  That's why I always appreciate fanfiction work on figures when I see it.  People's imaginations sort of take flight with those, and it makes some interesting results.
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