Site Map - skip to main content

Hacker Public Radio

Your ideas, projects, opinions - podcasted.

New episodes every weekday Monday through Friday.
This page was generated by The HPR Robot at

hpr3088 :: Matchbox Restoration Part 2

Second episode discussing restoring Matchbox diecast models Tony talks tools and materials needed

<< First, < Previous, , Latest >>

Hosted by Tony Hughes AKA TonyH1212 on 2020-06-03 is flagged as Clean and is released under a CC-BY-SA license.
Matchbox Cars, Diecast Models, Restoration, Tools and materials.. (Be the first).
The show is available on the Internet Archive at:

Listen in ogg, spx, or mp3 format. Play now:

Duration: 00:05:07

Model Hacking.

Creating, restoring, painting all sorts of models from RPG characters to model cars.

Matchbox HPR Episode 2 – Equipment

Hello all those in HPR land. This is Tony Hughes coming to you from Blackpool in the UK. I hope you are all keeping well at the current time of restrictions due to the Corona Virus.

In this the second of my recordings talking about restoring of Matchbox and other Die-cast models, I am going to talk of the equipment you will find essential, and some other things that while at the start you could live without, as you get into the hobby you may find extremely useful.

So the first thing you will need is a drill for drilling the posts out on the model, both to aid in dismantling them and if you plan to reassemble with the aid of small screws, to drill the hole in the post for tapping to accommodating the screws. This can be a hand held wired or cordless drill or if you have a workshop with a drill press, all the better as this can be used in several ways during the reassembly of the models. That is on my wish list as I don’t have one at the moment.

Secondly you will need a set of modelling files for removing the burr on axles, to remove these and the plastic wheels of the base of the model to allow for repainting if required.

Wire brushes for cleaning the remains of any paint that didn’t get removed by the paint stripper.

Hemostat Clamp Tweezers or crocodile clips on a rod, for use to hold the model during spray painting

Additionally, although you can start doing restorations without these, the following will become very useful to help save time and achieve better finishes of the completed restoration.

Rotary Tool, the most well known is the Dremel but there are many other manufacturers of similar tools at more economic cost. However beware you do get what you pay for and you may find buying the cheapest you can find a false economy. My cheap Lidl rotary tool which I have had for a few years but barely used, failed after 5 months of use a few weeks ago. The chuck ring thread striped and it will no longer hold bits in the chuck. The rotary tool makes the removal of the axles a very quick job, and cleaning paint stripped castings with a wire rotary brush is a breeze.

Another thing you may find useful is a small spray booth with an extractor fan and filter for removing over-spray from the area you are painting in if doing this indoors, particularly if your workshop is in the house. Although one YouTube modeller I follow sprays his models on the cooker with the cooker extractor fan on to achieve a similar result when painting indoors.

Finally you may wish to put a compressor and spray gun on your wish list if you get hooked as this gives you a far better range of colours you can paint in, as you can mix your own shades. Some in this community are sticklers for trying to get an exact match to the original colour of the model, others like me at the moment are happy to use shop bought spray paint cans.

Small table vice for holding the model. A set of helping hands for the same during painting, particularly when painting fine details.

So that’s the tools, now the consumables:

  • Gloves – Rubber washing up gloves to protect from some of the chemicals used to strip paint.
  • Latex gloves for using when spray painting as you have more control while wearing these rather than the looser fitting rubber washing up gloves.
  • Work gloves to use when drilling or using other tools.
  • Paint face mask to prevent inhaling fumes.
  • Paint stripper, I use B&Q’s DIAL own brand paint stripper. I also use caustic soda for the same thing, occasionally one will work when the other failed to remove the paint, it depends on the original paint applied to the model.
  • Model filler for repairing dents in the casting
  • Wire wool and several grades of wet and dry sanding paper to smooth models after filler has been used.
  • Super glue, useful for repairs where a quick setting medium is needed.
  • Cans of spray paint to repaint the model, both primer and the final colour. You may also want a can or two of a clear coat to give that extra protection after painting or giving a gloss finish if the paint was a matt or satin finish.
  • Not essential at the start but I also use a UV resin glue that cures very quickly after exposure to a UV light torch, this can be added and cured in layers if needed and remains flexible so can be useful for repairs on cables as well as my modelling.
  • Finally you need your first model to start work on, these can be found in charity shops, online auction sites or maybe in your loft or garage if you have any of your childhood models kicking around needing to be re-loved.

Later in the series I’ll talk about other things you may add to the consumables list as you get more into the hobby. So that’s it for this episode. In the next episode I’ll talk you through me dismantling a model for restoration.

This is Tony Hughes for HPR signing off for this episode. Keep safe and I’ll be back soon.


Subscribe to the comments RSS feed.

Leave Comment

Note to Verbose Commenters
If you can't fit everything you want to say in the comment below then you really should record a response show instead.

Note to Spammers
All comments are moderated. All links are checked by humans. We strip out all html. Feel free to record a show about yourself, or your industry, or any other topic we may find interesting. We also check shows for spam :).

Provide feedback
Your Name/Handle:
Anti Spam Question: What does the letter P in HPR stand for?
Are you a spammer?
What is the HOST_ID for the host of this show?
What does HPR mean to you?