Why Laser Cut Wood?
We believe that wood as a modelling medium presents a surface texture that represents brick and masonry much better than shiny plastics, and is easier to work with than cast plaster. Fine details and reliefs can be laser etched into the surfaces to represent masonry, concrete or steel.
Paint penetrates the surface rather than building up on top, resulting in a realistic matte finish. That controlled penetration allows for colour layering and a translucency that you see in real life. It also provides a "tooth" for the use of pigments, chaulks and pastels either as primary colour or weathering features.
Wood is very easy to cut and shape with a variety of standard hand tools, and bonds together with many types of adhesives ... from simple wood glues to ACC "super" glues.
We use premium quality woods - Micro Plywoods and MDF Hardboard.
Our Micro Plywood is a high quality 3 ply laminate which is void-free. Used primarily in model aircraft construction, it laser etches / cuts well, and is easily painted or stained. We use this Micro Plywood for detail parts such as windows, doors, cornice and pilaster brick / concrete layers.
Our MDF hardboard is 1/8" thick engineered solid wood product used in the cabinet making industry. It is dimensionally stable, resistant to warping and does not shrink. We use the MDF material for walls and structural parts ... no bracing required as this material is very robust.
Please see our product photos, "Paint" & "Assemble" menu tabs, & Photo Gallery for examples of detail and the "colouration" possible with our ITLA Scale Models laser cut wood products.
How do I paint this stuff?
Painting is easily accomplished using "rattle can" spray painting, brush painting / sponge painting with water based acrylics, airbrushing, or even dry pigment (weathering powders). See our "How to Colour Our Products" tab.
Thin, light coats are the secret to success...see our photos for examples or write us with your questions. Colours are built up in layers and optional clear matte sealers can be used between those layers of colour to build more translucency. A light sanding of the painted surface will also let the base colours show through.
Warpage of wood components is natural. If you apply too much moisture this can be easily controlled with the use of blocks or clamps to hold parts in place while they dry...have no fear!
Precision laser cutting of the wood materials provides the modeller with ease of construction, dimensional stability, consistent fit and finish with minimal part cleanup.
Feel free to write us with any questions regarding modelling with our laser etched and cut wood materials!
Our ITLA Design Features ...
We laser etch fine detail into the raw wood medium, providing deep realistic features which show through your light coats of paint...detail that you can even feel on the surface.
Our kits are engineered to incorporate layered, modular construction techniques, ease of assembly, and the ability to configure components into multiple build combinations ... making our product "kitbash - capable" by design. You can create your own signature kit!
Full colour instructions with photos are included as shown below.
We stand behind our product ...
If you damage a component though normal handling, or we inadvertently missed a part, we will gladly replace it at no charge.
If you have questions during your build, please contact us and we'll gladly help you.
Our products are designed for the adult hobbyist and not intended for children or family pets. Many small components could become choking hazards if swallowed.
Primarily comprised of "Micro Plywood" and MDF Hardboard, they are combustible and they should not be placed near a source of heat which could ignite them, or cause them to emit smoke. Smoke can be dangerous to your health.
We recommend water and solvent based paints, wood and ACC glues. Each paint and adhesive is dependent upon the modeller's choice. Please apply these paints and glues in a well ventilated area to avoid inhalation, and according to their manufacturer's instructions.
The modeller should also consider using safety glasses or personal protective equipment when using the above materials. The same personal protective equipment should be considered when using a hobby knife to remove the component parts and prevent foreign objects from entering the eyes.
We truly hope you enjoy building our products safely!