Model Making FAQS

How much does a model cost?
There are no definitive answers to this question as every model is a unique project. Prices range from less than a hundred pounds to many thousands of pounds. Big complicated models obviously cost more than small simple models but there are no fixed price bands that can be applied to these projects. The only way we can give a realistic estimate for your model is by looking at whatever information you have and getting a feel for how complex the project is - although, if necessary, we can give you a rough ball park figure just from a verbal description.

Does it matter if I am not local?
Not at all. We manufacture models for clients all over Britain and abroad. Information exchange and client liaison is all carried out via email or telephone and regular photographs keep you in touch with progress on your model. We usually find completed models can be signed off from photographs (although you may prefer to come in for a final inspection) and there are various options for delivery.

What information is required to supply a quotation?
To provide a fixed price quotation for a model, ideally we require a fairly comprehensive set of drawings but we understand this isn’t always possible. As a basic guideline, for an architectural model we would require a site plan with some indication of levels (unless it’s flat) plus several elevations of the new development. Site photographs are also very useful. For display models or exhibition models we need as many images, drawings or 3D views of the proposed design as possible. But if you are at the very early stages of a project we can supply a rough cost from very minimal information.

What format should the information be in?
The information can be emailed as pdfs, dwgs, jpgs, etc. Whilst we can open most files it is usually worth a phone call to check for compatibility. If the files are very big and there are lots of them it may be worth sending them on a disc. Alternatively, if it’s just for quoting purposes, it’s always nice to receive drawings the old fashioned way, as a package of prints through the post.

How long is a model quotation valid for?
A quotation is valid for a period of three months. The only part of the quotation that may change is the proposed completion date. Modelmakers has to book projects in on a first come first served basis so if there is a delay in confirming the order, other projects may well put back the date we can complete your model.

What information is required to build the model?
The better the information you are able to give us, the better the model we are able to give you. A full set of plans, sections, elevations and a detailed finishes schedule will enable us to make your model quickly and accurately. For architectural models in particular we need - An accurate site plan showing boundaries of model - Plan showing levels across site - Plans, elevations, sections of all buildings - Landscaping plan, if available - Any aerial or ground level photos of site. We also need references for colours of – Road treatments/ Paviours etc. around site - Main brick or cladding materials - Contrast materials - Roof finishes - Balcony & railing colours/design - Window frame colours. For more information about this please click on the “Architectural Models" link above and scroll to the bottom of the page.

How long does a model take to build?
Just as there is no fixed price structure for a model nor is there a standard construction time. Each model is different. A simple concept model could take just a few days. A large, complex interactive model could take five or six weeks. Most projects take somewhere in between, typically two to four weeks. However the total turn-around time will depend on our existing commitments at the time of ordering.

What’s the best scale for the model?
When planning a model the first and most important step is to establish which scale is most appropriate for the purposes of the model. This decision usually depends on two things; how big an area you need to model and how much detail you need to show. But other factors, such as, the size of your budget, how much room you will have to display the model and whether it has to be easily portable also need to be considered. Modelmakers will be happy to advise you on the pros and cons of the various scale options that most suit your project. For more detailed information about scales please click on the “Architectural Models” link above and scroll half way down the page.

How can I check progress of the model if I am not local?
Please refer to “Does it matter if I’m not local?” above.

What materials will the model be made from?
The majority of models are made from various high grade plastics but Modelmakers has experience in working with a variety of different materials so please contact us if you have any special requirements.

How late can changes be made?
Design alterations can be incorporated in your model at any point during construction but there may be a charge incurred for any abortive work already carried out. Significant alterations may also affect the completion date. However, as a gesture of good will we usually try to carry out minor changes without any additional cost or delays to the deadline.

Do I need to inspect the finished model before delivery?
It is not essential to come in and inspect the finished model before it is delivered although some clients prefer to do this. Other clients are happy to sign the project off using emailed photographs. We will send any views or angles you need as well as detailed close-ups of any query areas.

How will the model be delivered?
The options for delivery will vary from model to model. A compact one-piece model can usually be delivered by a dedicated door to door courier which is generally the lowest cost option. Larger more complex projects (such as a display model or exhibition model) will often need to be delivered by our own staff, especially if the project requires careful setting up or an element of demonstration. Models for export will usually require a purpose-built flight case which is a service we provide. Modelmakers will usually give an indication of the likely delivery arrangements in the quotation process.

Do you repair or update models?
We are frequently asked to repair or update models made by other companies who are either no longer trading or are too far away to be cost effective for minor amendments. Please feel free to contact us for a quotation regarding any work on an existing model you may have.

Does the model need a stand or legs?
This depends on the size of the model and where you are intending to display it. Smaller models can be displayed on any desk or suitably sturdy table. For larger models we can provide either a purpose built plinth or removable legs. We can offer a wide variety of designs and materials.

Do you supply Perspex covers for models?
We supply all architectural models with a sturdy Perspex cover to protect them from dirt and damage. We can repair Perspex cases or supply new ones to any dimensions you require.

Can you supply a flight case (travel case) for the model?
Modelmakers can provide a custom-built case to any dimensions or specifications you require.
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"Steven’s studio is a pleasure to work with. He does excellent work and he always delivers on time. I would be happy to recommend him to anyone.” Jonathan Adams (Architect for Wales Millennium Centre) Capita Percy Thomas "Thanks very much to all the team for producing such an excellent model, the attention to detail is fantastic. I look forward to working with you again.” Carolyn Merrifield
Downs Merrifield Architects
"Modelmakers’ models are of fantastic quality, and allow us to sell our properties more effectively from plan. Not only are the team courteous and helpful, they produce the goods on time, and importantly are competitively priced.” Holly Finer
Redrow Homes
"The attention to detail and quality is exemplary and we would just like to thank you and your team for the care and effort you’ve put in. As a practice we will definitely bear you in mind if ever we are requiring models built in the future.” Kelvin Naidoo
Bryden Wood Associates
Architects and Designers for Manufacture
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