Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Dear Nyhil: Why are my windows so foggy?

Hey all.  Tonight I thought I would post about a topic dear to my heart:  Windows without fog.  I built two Vendettas in the last few months, and the canopy pieces were the first clear plastic components that I have worked with in years.  Not since I left my smudgy fingerprints on the canopy of an Apache helicopter, have I felt the rage and disappointment connected to the modeling hazards of clear plastic.  Looking at my two new Vendettas, I could already taste Testor's glue for plastic.  And fear.

The first thing I did, was take the clear plastic sprue frames that the canopy comes on, and clip it into several small sticks. Due to a childhood haunted by foggy canopies and last-step mishaps, I wanted to be absolutely sure that the glass would be fog free. I used these small sticks to test several glues that I had on hand, to be absolutely sure of my result.

I already knew the outcome, but I figured I would try the testor's glue for plastic just as a foggy control. I also tested out zapp a gap, and elmer's pva. Believe it or not, both zapp and elmer's glued the clear sticks without any fogging. The testor's glue performed as expected; terribly. The problem was that the elmer's glue did not actually bond very well, so that left zapp a gap. I know what you are thinking, but hey, I tested the zapp for this very reason, and it DID NOT FOG.

Now of course, when I used the zapp a gap to fix the canopies in place, the glass fogged to hell. Damn! This is exactly WHY I tested the glue in the first place!

$20 from horde-o-bits later, I had replaced the foggy glass and canopy frames. I did a bit of research, and found testor's clear parts cement. Well that makes sense!

After ordering the glue, I was excited to give it a try. I found the glue itself to be a bit separated inside of the package, so I had to shake the applicator vigorously. While applying the glue itself, I had little faith in it. The substance was a milky white color, with the consistency of congealed milk. It did not appear sticky. In fact, after applying the glue and holding the components together, I had serious doubts about the effectiveness of the glue. However, I persevered. After leaving the models for 24 hours, I found that the glue has dried perfectly clear, and has made a remarkably sturdy bond. I also found that what little extraneous glue bubbled out along the edges of the bonded components, has dried clear and was virtually invisible.

All in all, I highly recommend this product. If you need something reliable for Valkyrie glass, immolator shields, or even necron gauss tubes, give it a try. Here is some info on the product:



  1. Alot of the time i find you get fogging on parts when the air is trapped, or even if not trapped, there is no air flow around the area.
    I avoid that by placing my models to dry on some wire mesh left over from making a grill for a jap cars front bumper and having it near a slightly open window.
    Its helps with most things, unsure how would help with a valkyries canopy though, as i intended to paint mine black anyway...

  2. Yep, CA glues have a significant amount of out-gassing of the adhesive -- when you enclose it such as attaching the canopy to the fuselage, there's nowhere for it to go so it deposits on the glass :<. I used the Testors clear stuff on my Valks as well -- great stuff.

  3. Another good solution is Bob Smith International's Clear Drying/Foam Safe super glue. You know, those Generic super glues you find at hobby stores like Hobbytown USA that puts the stores logos on their bottles with the multicolored caps and labels. Look for the line that has a black cap and gold label.

    Another trick for avoid fog I have heard of but never tried is applying a glaze of future floor wax (pure, no delusion) to the inside of the canopy before gluing with Testors airplane glue.

  4. Definitely gonna have to do this for the Vendettas I have assembled and the ones I need to make.

  5. Micro Krystal Klear is the product I use to affix canopies for my Eldar tanks, and for the WWII aircraft games out group plays.


    The Testors glue you used sounds very similar in consistency.

  6. I use Formula 560 Canopy Glue, mad eby Pacer. It does have a minimum cure time of 3 hours, but your patience can be rewarded with zero fogging. I used it on all of my valkyries, as well as my flying stands.