Model Makers and Versatility

Sometimes I like to highlight an example of what makes professional model makers such a versatile group of crafts people.

At KiwiMill, we don’t specialize in a particular type of scale model. Many of our models are found at trade shows – representing such a diverse range of products and industries that it would be nearly impossible to list them all. Our model makers build stunning architectural pieces for sales offices. Our shop produces museum dioramas, many of which are meticulously researched historical models. Product models are built, accurate enough to be used in print ads when the real product has yet to come off the production line. Our model makers craft medical models that are used for sales and educational purposes. We also have made our fair share of hands on training models which are known for their ability to withstand repeated demonstrations and handling.

There is a saying around the shop that there is no object that cannot be modeled, given enough information, time, financial resources and materials. And, no, our model makers don’t need to have experience making a particular object. Once you master the underlying principles of model making, the knowledge can be applied in any situation, with any object that needs to be replicated.

Being able to model any object known to man is an impressive display of versatility. But hanging around our model shop the past few days would have offered yet another example of the breadth of talent necessary to succeed as a custom model maker. Any guesses on what was being built?

Crates. Massive sized wood crates. I’ve mentioned it before that many of our larger models have custom-made crates built to transport them to customers and to trade shows. While smaller models are often nestled in Pelican cases that can be wheeled or carried on planes with ease, larger ones require crates. Occasionally we have larger metal and wood crates custom crafted for clients that still want the ease of a road case, but their model is too odd sized for off the shelf cases. Most times, though, an over-sized model requires a custom wood crate. Our model makers build these, and then “jig” the insides with foam inserts that house the model safely.

Take a look at the huge crate being built this week:

model maker

 

model maker

 

model maker

 

model maker

 

model maker

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Building a Scale Model for Trade Show

Scale models for trade show have many different uses. They attract attention to a booth by providing a focal point that potential customers can gather around. Everyone loves scale models. Whether they are static or motorized, full-scale or miniature, cutaway or exact replicas. Trade show models are naturally interactive and informative.

In many situations, the model will replace the actual product at the show. It may be smaller than the actual product, thus easier and less expensive to transport. Or larger than the actual product so that details can be appreciated up close. Multiple versions of a product can be represented by scale models, as well.

In the case of this latest scale model built for a trade show, KiwiMill created 1:3 scale replicas of a  fuel monitoring cabinet that debuted at AHR Expo earlier this year.  The scale model versions are lighter, and a bit smaller and easier to transport than the real products. There is something fascinating about capturing the essence of an industrial product in model form.

The cabinets of the model were made of stainless steel sheet metal. The piping was constructed from real plumbing pieces. The gauges were 3D printed with vinyl label faces. The motors and valves were also 3D printed.

See for yourself:

trade show scale model

trade show scale model

trade show scale model

trade show scale model

trade show scale model

 

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