Making Working Hatch Hinges by Sam Law
17 December 2001  
Tools required:
  • Hand drill; the Tamiya one is quite good, about 10USD.
  • Drill bits with various diameters, 0.4, 0.5, 0.6, 0.8 and 1.0mm. These four kinds of drill bits are always used in my workshop (about 0.7~1USD per each).
  • Copper wires - diameter around 0.3 ~0.4mm. These can be had from the motors of some small household appliances such as juicer. Or from the power cord. Please note that it should be copper but not the brass, which is too stiff.

Commander hatch hinge-make Procedures (see attached picture):

  • Close the Hatch in position.
  • Drill four 0.4mm holes adjacent to the hinge rod. You can use the magnifier help. You can also use an engraving blade to make dots for drill locating.
  • Insert two 0.3~0.4mm wires to the holes.
  • Bend the wires at the bottom side of the cover. Don't use instant glue to stick the wire to the bottom surface as the glue would go through the holes into the hinge. The wire should not be too thin, less than 0.3mm, as the wire would easy spring back.


  • The gunner hatch is similar, but you have to insert a shaft between the two hinges on the hatch. A little bit difficult.
  • Such hinge making would affect the outlook of the model. But since the wires are so small, it is acceptable to me.
  • It seems difficult but once you try, you will find it is quite fast and easy to do that.

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