Site seeing – June 18

Cutting Costs and Styrene

The costs of buying sheet styrene has gone up a lot recently. Let me say that I love my Evergreen styrene; I could not model what I model without them. I recently updated and added to my modelling stash of shapes for upcoming projects. Luckily I found a local supplier who is among the cheapest in Victoria for Evergreen.

However, when you need a lot of sheet styrene buying multiple packs of 40 thou (1.0 mm) and 20 thou (0.5 mm) styrene gets expensive very quickly. A business friend bought the local plastic company here in town a couple of years ago and he has these thicknesses of styrene I use most often (called HIPS in the trade in Australia) available in 8′ x 4′ (1200 x 2400 mm) sheets. At around $A22.00 for that size of 20 thou sheet and double that for 40 thou sheet you can see that there is some serious savings to be had buying that way.

Site 1: General Plastics Ballarat [+ Link]

Dale, the owner of General Plastic in Ballarat, is always helpful to modellers and a lot of modellers use his services to get what they need in the Western Victorian region. Dale has a full set of products and can get whatever you need. More importantly Dale has added a Laser Cutter and can cut whatever you need directly from your CAD file. If you live close by drop in and say hello.

Site 2: Harper’s Hobbies and Collectibles  [+ Link]

Harper’s’ Hobbies in Wendouree is becoming a really great place to visit. Ballarat is not short of good model sellers. What makes the difference is that Harper’s has the basics you need to scratchbuild, along with a really good tool choice. That makes a difference. Also they have begun to stock the Warhammer 40K range of kits that my son is right into.

While the sites are really Western Victorian focused today, perhaps you’d like to share your favourite modelling suppliers. Leave a comment and share.


If you buy larger sheets of styrene, one big problem is storage. Here’s what I do:

  • Cut the sheet into 4 pieces across the sheet with shears of large scissors
  • Using plastic clamps, join all four sheets to keep them under control.
  • That way when you need it you simply cut off what you need, and then rehang the remaining pieces.

Talk to you later.


About Andrew Martin

After a long IT and Telecommunications career in the USA and Australia, I've decided I need a break, I've changed focus and now work in the public transport sector - a complete change of pace. Hobby wise I'm focused on model railway layout building and modelling. I blog, write and publish as often as I am able.
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