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warped wood


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I'm not sure whether I'm in the right forum, but I have a problem.  I've built a number of Model Expo kits and I'm at the beginning stage of building their coffee wagon.  I removed the 4 wooden parts of the urn platform and the individual pieces immediately warped.  I tried wetting them and pressing them under a heavy weight and that didn't work.  Even though our humidity levels here in NM are very low, particularly when compared to the high humidity on FL, I don't think that's the problem.  I wrote to them concerning this problem and they told me to join and post my problem here.  Has anyone else had a problem with kit wood warping?  Do you have any ideas on what I could try to solve this problem?





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George, I would say you have several options to consider.

If assembled would the parts straighten themselves out being glued together.

Sounds like you have already tried the wetting technique. Maybe try steaming with an iron.

Other ideas would be to contact the manufacturer for a replacement sheet.

Another would be to buy your own wood and create a pattern to cut out on the new wood.


Hope you find a solution that works for you.



Current Build

AL Constellation


Completed Builds

AL Swift


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Thanks for your ideas.  The pieces basically form an open sided and open topped box.  Wood is 1/32" thick.  I'm going to have to build a basic jig to do the glue up.  Since the wood is so thin, I don't see the problem resolving itself.  I did try a steam iron.  I have a piece of wood stock to cut my own pieces, but two of them have some small scallopy kind of profile which might not be easy to duplicate.  I'm going to try requesting another board from Model Expo.


Thanks again



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If possible you might want to try to make a number of kerf cuts on the back side of the parts.  Make the cuts parallel to each other about 1/16" apart cutting halfway through the thickness of the material.  Then fill the cuts with PVA glue, place them between a few straight boards, and clamp them together (surround them with waxed paper to keep them from sticking to the straight boards) so they will remain flat.  Leave them to dry overnight and when removed they should be straight and remain that way.  The surface with the glue on it can be painted but not stained.


I've used that method many times with models as well as when making furniture.


Good luck.



If someone says something can't be done, it only means they can't do it.


Building:Shipyard - HMS Mercury card madel


Completed Builds:

Wood Models; AL Bluenose II 1989, Corel Toulonnaise 1995, Corel Flying Fish 2000, AL Scottish Maid 2005,

Sergal President 2010, Mamoli Beagle 2011, Corel Eagle 2013, Mamoli Constitution Cross-section 2014, Victory Cross-section 1/98 by Corel 2015, Occre San Francisco Cable Car 2018, Model Shipways Armed Long Boat 2021

Card Models

Christmas Train by PaperReplika 2012, Yamaha DSC11 Motorcycle 2013, Canon EOS 5D Mark II 2014, WWII Tiger I Tank by Paper-Replika 2014, Wrebbit Mercedes-Benz 500K Roadster 2014, Central Pacific no. 60 Jupiter card model 2015, Mirage III 1/30 converted to 1/33 card model 2017, TKpapercraft 1912 Mercer 2021


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