Saturday, January 24, 2015

'72 Skyline: glass with Micro Krystal Klear

A number of bloggers and correspondents have recommended Micro Kristal Klear glue, from Microscale Industries, for clear parts, so I got brave, picked up a bottle at the local hobby shop and gave it a try on the front and rear windshields on the Skyline. (Unlike a lot of hardtop models, the glass is 4 separate pieces, not a single big molding).

The glue is white, sticky and high viscosity; it goes on thick, a bit like the white glue that we give to preschoolers to use with construction paper; it sticks to the brush and does not want to run into crevices which is both good (no messes) and bad (no contact between parts unless you push it in with a brush or other implement). It dries very slowly so you've got lots of time to move things around, and excess can be mopped up with a wet paper towel until it's dry. I left it for 30 minutes and tried to remove some fog on the inside of one window with a wet tissue, but the fog kept coming back and eventually the window fell out -- it turns out I was dissolving the glue around the rim of the glass and spreading it around, making new fog. I cleaned up the glass, put it back in with more glue, and let it sit overnight (upside down so as to avoid gravity loosening it).

That seemed to do the trick; as it is 4 separate pieces of glass, there is a possibility one or more could fall in once complete, and I would really like to avoid that scenario. (Being a bit paranoid, I added a drop of the old Testor's glue at each corner of the glass, just to be safe ...).

I also used the Micro stuff on smaller glass bits, like headlamps and turn signals. For the first time, you can tell I didn't get the headlamp lenses in perfectly straight; normally they would have been all fogged up and it wouldn't have mattered.

Not knowing if it will adhere to paint or chrome, I scraped as I would have in the past, but maybe I'll try gluing without scraping on some scrap bits from the parts bin, just to see. The stuff seems too good to be true; not having to scrape would be mindboggling.

The rest of the finishing touches worked out well and the finished model is one of my better efforts if I do say so myself. All the little trim bits went on OK, the paint and glass survived the handling, and the engine looks good with the red wiring. The only real screw-up was the front license plate decal, which I fixed by the simple expedient of leaving it off. (Bet you hadn't noticed). So the approach of getting the bodywork out of the way early has paid off in that final assembly took an hour, not the usual frustrating full afternoon with the end in sight but all these annoying little details, like door handles, to get out of the way first. (Looking at the high-resolution under-hood shot, I noticed and fixed a chip in the heat paint on the exhaust manifold and some excess silver around the wingnut for the air filter. I also added a touch of silver to the three strut tower bolts on each inner fender. Time to quit futzing around.)

Next up: The matching '90 Skyline? Fresh from a success story, an alternative is to get to work on one of the six Profil 24 resin kits that have been sitting on the shelf for close to two years in some cases. Wiring up the 908 motor, with its 16 spark plugs and 8 injectors, is another option. Maybe I can even arrange an alternative throttle return spring mount, which has been the psychological holdup. Nothing builds confidence like success. Yippee!

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