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Ears to a Quick Fix!

Text and photos by Jennifer Danza

Ear Repair 1

 

Battered and broken ears are a disappointing blemish on a cherished model, but fixing them is easier than one might imagine. Although there are many repair methods, I find the easiest solutions are often best. For fixing ears, a simple combination of baking soda and Zap A Gap® glue are all you need.

Zap A Gap® glue and baking soda are the main repair products

Zap A Gap® glue and baking soda are the main repair products

 

Getting Started


First, make sure the horse is clean and free of dust.

The OF patient, a Shire with broken ears

The OF patient, a Shire with broken ears

 

Dab a small drop of Zap A Gap glue (Cyanoacrylate) on the top of the broken ear. (It's ok of the glue drips over the edges a tiny bit.)

 

Dripping glue on broken section

Dripping glue on broken sectio

 

Let the glue sit for about half a minute then tip the horse upside down. The glue drop will follow the pull of gravity and look as if it's going to drip right off the broken part. Don't let it. Instead, dunk that ball of hanging glue right into a mound of baking soda. The baking soda will make the glue ball harden almost immediately.

 

Dipping the glue into baking soda
Dipping the glue into baking soda

 

Keep applying more glue and baking soda in the same fashion till the new "glue mound" is the proper ear height for your model. It may take between 3 and 4 rounds and this mound will most likely look unsightly at this stage.

 

Baking soda mounds at proper height
Baking soda mounds at proper height

 

Carving and Sanding

After you have created the proper height to the ear, take a Dremel and any attachment that fits well into the inner ear cavity (I prefer a #105 bit attachment for the initial carving.) and carve the baking soda mound into an ear shape. Be sure to have ear reference handy just in case you lose sight of the shape you want. After the shape has been achieved, take various grades of sandpaper and smooth out any bumps or irregularities till the new addition is as smooth as the plastic.

 

Newly carved baking soda/glue ears
Newly carved baking soda/glue ears

 

Dry Brush Touch Up

There is probably paint missing from the original plastic ear and no color on the new addition. Acrylic paint is the best medium to cover all this and make your horse look new again. Match your acrylic color to the model's original finish and then dip your paintbrush in the color. Take that brush and dab it in a fresh, dry paper towel. There will still be color on the brush, but it will be a bit "dry" when you go to apply it to the model. Allow the paint to fully dry once you apply it to the horse. Keep layering your color with this technique. This "dry brushing" technique will allow you to blend the new color into the existing factory color much better, helping to create a seamless touch up.

 

A fully recovered patient
A fully recovered patient

 

Supply List:

Ordinary household baking soda
Zap A Gap® Glue
Dremel
Various grades of sandpaper
Acrylic paints
Paint brushes


To learn more about Jennifer Danza and her artwork, please visit www.jenndanza.com!

 

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