Sometimes, the best steam model engine kits are found in your attic, all rusty and gathering dust and dirt. If you are thinking of restoring an old model steam engine kit, there are factors that you need to consider in order to make sure that your restoration project will be successful. Who knows how it would cheer up your father or friend who is deeply in love with science? Here is everything you need to know first in restoring your old model engine kit.
Examine the damage
The first thing that you should do is to examine the damage on the model steam engine. Is it that worse? Are you going to handle it by your own? Or you think it really needs the help a professional engineer? While there are some things that might work for other people, you have to completely understand that restoring an old model steam engine kit can be quite risky and dangerous.
Aside from that, you should also calculate if the overall expenses that you are going to spend for the restoration are not that big compared to when you buy a brand new model steam engine kit. It is highly recommended that you buy a brand new one but if it happens that that certain model has a sentimental value for you, it might be fun rebuilding it from the scratch again.
Choose the right tools
After that, you should start gathering all the materials and tools that you need in order to restore your model steam engine kit. Having a good lubricant will set everything in right places because you have to clean a lot of rusty and dirty parts. You can use the WD60 in loosening up the parts and then the compound 680 for the cylinders and other steam parts. Lastly, look for olive oil that you should use in cleaning all the parts that had been painted.
Next are the pliers, and cutters. Make sure that you have small files available here and there. As much as possible, you should not use any kind of pliers when it comes to loosening up the parts when it’s stuck because you are more likely to break it off.
You should also consider investing in a Gasca propane torch because there is a lot of small pipework and soldering to do in order to restore your model steam kit engine. Screwdrivers, bolts, and nuts are also essential. If there are pipework then make sure that you have enough supplies of pipe for your project. The last thing that you wanted to experience is running out of pipe in the middle of working something.
Understand the risks
You may burn your fingers a little and stay up all night in order to fully restore your model steam engine kit. You are going to invest both your money and time in this restoration so make sure that you understand all the risks involved before you can achieve your desired result.
As much as possible, you should preserve the old painting if you can. You should just consider cleaning it instead of repainting it to maintain its original look. But if you think that the paint cannot be repaired anymore, you should just be careful in removing it or you may damage some metal surfaces in the process.
I hope this guide can help you in restoring back your model steam engine. It can be a daunting task but it will be all worth it if you can see your model steam engine kit running and operating again just like when you first bought it.