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What is plasticard for modelling?

Plasticard for modelling has been used as a modeling material in classic scales models, architectural models, rail transport modeling, and wargames for many years. The common name for all plastics is Plasticard for modelling, Plastic Card, or Plastikard, or sometimes just named by its chemical formula or formulation such as Polystyrene or Styrene sheets, ABS sheets, HIPS, or uPVC, or even using commercial names such as Evergreen. or Plastruct. In the end, all of them are plastic that can be cut, glued, and painted very well, and in general, they are practically replaceable one by another.

Modeling plastic can be purchased in the form of plain sheets, textured sheets, and many types of profiles in various shapes. These materials have become more popular indirectly due to the price increases of the models that have caused many people to get fully involved in scratch building to finish their dioramas and complete their Warhammer armies.

Where to buy modeling plastic?

You can get the full range at the Green Stuff World site, which has the largest stock of plastic modeling materials for sale,  modelling plastic in sheets, with textures, abs plasticard profiles and rods with shapes to convert figures and architectural models, as well as other resin bit parts at a good price. We also have hobby cutting tools, such as hobby pliers, cutter miter (mitre cutter), tube cutters, and hobby saws. We ship to practically the whole world including Spain, France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, Holland, the United States, Canada, and Australia among others. You can see the list of countries where we ship in the following LINK.

Plasticard | Plasticard for modelling

Are modeling plastic sheets flexible?

It will totally depend on the thickness of the material since the thicker it is, the more rigid, and the thinner, the more flexible.

The thinnest will be 0.16mm which will be more like paper that can be even used as paper in an inkjet printer.

What thickness sizes of plasti card are commonly used?

It is very common to have doubts about what is the most thickness in wargames and when you are building dioramas for each project.

Basically, plasti card are divided into 3 thicknesses: less than 1mm, 1mm, and greater than 1mm.

0.16mm, 0.25mm, and 0.5mm modelling plastic sheets are best for detail layers, fitting to curved surfaces, and adding detail in the form of trims, panels, tiles, etc... These thicknesses are thin enough to easily make cuts completely through.

1mm is the limit to be able to use scissors for cutting. This thickness is almost thick enough for most of the tasks, for instance, creating thin structures or even supporting the weight of miniatures.

Thicker than 1mm, such as 1.5mm, 2mm, and 3mm are great for building strong structures and solid pieces. My best choice for Movement Trays will be 1.5mm thickness.

How do I cut plasticard sheets?

Up to 1mm thick use a hobby knife or a pair of scissors. This is very easy.

Greater than 1mm, such as 1.5mm, 2mm, and 3mm may be a bit tricky to cut, and you will need a hobby saw, or score the surface with a hobby knife several times to carve a line and then bend the sheet away from the scored line to complete cuts. We would always recommend using metal rulers to avoid any accidents.

Using a hobby saw could be the only solution with thicker materials. Proceed slowly so that you do not generate too much heat which will melt the material.

What variety of Plasticard profiles is available on the market?

There is a wide variety on offer in terms of shapes and thicknesses. In reality, it will depend on the work to be done, the scale, and, above all, the preferences of the modeler. You have the full range of shapes and sizes in our catalog of Plastikard profiles.

Square rods and tube strips will be used for structures, reinforcing corners, where floors meet walls, and building struts, stairs, girders, etc. You can also cut the square down the tubes to make L-channels and C-channels if you need them.

Round rods and tube strips can be used for railings, pipes, spikes, hydraulic rods, rivets, and others.

There are plenty of different and very useful shapes such as H-beams, I-beams, L-channels, and other crazy shapes that you can get.

How to cut Plasticard profiles?

The easiest way will always be the use of a craft knife or hobby saw, although for thicknesses between 0.4 and 4 mm, we recommend the use of a Miter cutter tool that will also allow you to cut angles up to 60º.

How to bend plasticard for modelling? 

Plasticard for modelling is available in different shapes and thicknesses. The thinner ones are flexible and can be bent like paper, while the thicker ones cannot be bent. However, they can hardly ever be shaped by hand alone. To reshape this material material it is necessary to apply heat, although the results may vary depending on the heat source used, the technique, and how it is applied.

This material is not intended for molding, but for use on straight surfaces, although thinner plasticard for modelling, up to 0.5 mm, is more malleable and capable of adapting to curved surfaces. Similarly, up to 1 mm can be cut with scissors, making them easier to work with. 

 However, because it is made of plastic, heat causes it to soften and it is possible to give it a different shape than the factory finish. To do this, many modelers use a dryer. One of the ways to do this is to heat the material and place it on a surface with the desired curve so that it molds to it, and lets it cool. It is also possible to mold it with one's own hands once it is hot and hold it in position until it cools. 

This material is flexible but it is not intended to be bent or molded, so the result is usually not optimal and it is difficult to get it right. Therefore, in these cases, it is recommended to use other materials and techniques to achieve results of this type. In fact, one of the main advantages is not its malleability, but its excellent machinability for filing, cutting, or turning, among other things.