Not all DIY disasters happen during remodels or when attempting repairs. Model making is an ideal way to keep yourself busy, but no matter if you are new to it or a seasoned builder there are a couple of mistakes that can easily take your build from fun to frustrating.
Multitasking to Ruin
The ability to multitask is often seen as a positive but the temptation to try and do a couple of different tasks at the same time is a sure fire way to make mistakes when it comes to model building. When dealing with small parts and delicate details, focus is your friend. Each step should be done on its own. If you are attempting a shortcut, e.g spraying multiple parts at the same time, consider the DIY mantra- Measure twice, cut once. Double check and then check again that you have exactly the right pieces and colours.
Make sure the lid is on… Really on
Model building has no shortage of paints, potions, sprays and finishes. When you are immersed in a build it can be easy to let your supplies build up around your work space. If you find it hard to keep things organized while you are working then be sure to screw lids on tightly! Plenty of models have been ruined by a pot of paint or varnish that gets knocked over and inadvertently wipes out all your hard work.
Everything in its place
If you are new to model building one thing you might start wondering about is the Carpet Monster that gets mentioned a lot in forums. Similar to whatever entity is responsible for the way a pair of socks can go into a washing machine but only a single one emerges, the Carpet Monster is what magically disappears any small piece of model or tool that happens to roll off your desk. Keeping your workspace tidy and organized is vital, but if you are worried about keeping track of everything consider a build where you receive the parts over time (like this Ford GT from ModelSpace). Monthly deliveries mean you are only working on one element at a time, significantly decreasing the chance of losing important parts.
Comparing yourself to others
Ah social media… It seems that in this day and age you can’t live with it or without it! If you are looking for inspiration of what to build next or another spin to put on a model then you will get no shortage of ideas from Instagram and other platforms. The downside of having all this just a few keystrokes or thumb swipes away is that you will inevitably start comparing your builds to what you see online. Ever finally finished a particularly tricky build only to see a post of someone who built the same thing in a fraction of the time? Perhaps you have spent hours trying to recreate a specific detail only to compare your efforts to someone elses and feel like yours is more awful than accurate. Before you start beating yourself up (or packing up your tools) remember that model building is about the process and the enjoyment you get out of it – it’s not a competition.
If you find yourself with time on your hands, and let’s face it, a lot of us will in the current situation give model making a try and remember to be aware of these common missteps to keep things productive rather than painful.