How do you overcome time if you have to wait?

Another question I came up with when I was reading about Tamiya acrylics drying times.
When I’m airbrushing I have time when I have to wait for some times, like 10 minutes or so.
Or with other things, when for example I think it would be safer to wait before I progress in a next step of kit assembly.
My question is, how are you overcoming those (short) time periods when you have to wait for something?
Most of the time with assembling a kit, I just put things away in the display cabinet and go further next week or something, as then is another time that I model again.
When I have to wait for shorter periods of time, I’m having less solutions to put in place for that.
Most of the time I try to take a break, grab a cup of coffee or something else to drink.
And get something to eat with it.
But that’s not always a good solution.
And I want to use my time as efficient as possible, wasting minimum amounts of it.
Because time is such a valuable resource.
Could you share your methods to deal with waiting and overcoming time?

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There is ALWAYS some detail work that needs to be done while short periods of time elapse. Gear and figures to paint (the thing I hate most), small fabrication tasks… heck you could always keep 2 projects on tap for just this purpose, but I dont like task switching…

I’m now wanting to return to just one project at a time, because that works best for me I believe.

I there are indy tracks I usually work on them while I’m waiting.

This is also good for sanity. First time I ever did Indy tracks on my last project, I left them to the end. Big mistake. It nearly drove me mad. Would have been much better to do a few everytime I got a few minutes

Lesson learned. :grin: :grin:

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Usually you can jump between different assembling steps while you wait for the glue to cure. As said above, you can work on tracks, or the turret, boxes, or any other part suitable.

For painting, there are times where you have to wait and that’s all, like the primer or the base coat. After that, you can again work on different areas at the same time.

In any case, it is good also to rest so you don’t get burn with boring tasks… work only while you enjoy it!

There’s always some other modelling task to be done while I’m waiting for something to dry. Not that it seems to result in anything being finished more quickly….

Have you posed this question to SWMBO? I’m sure she’ll come up with a solution.:laughing:


Made this mistake a couple weeks back, was waiting for stuff to dry on multiple projects. Made the mistake of stating I was bored with no stuff to work on. Man did I get a list of chores


Dive into deeper research. This not only passes the time waiting… it sometimes dooms the project.

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Crack a Coldie!.. :beer:

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@Armorsmith What are Indy tracks?

@varanusk At this point I’m usually following the instructions of assembling step by step. I don’t know what I can work on in mean times and what not. Maybe I’m not that advanced enough yet to know?

I’m agreeing that I only must work on a project when I’m enjoying it and having fun with it. But what if I’m working on two of the same projects for a long period of time? I’m still working on my Renault R35 figure to complete my project of that model. Did have a problem with a paint color that wasn’t good enough anymore.

I’m also still not done with my Sd. Kfz. 9 due to airbrush problems. I don’t have any working spray guns anymore. Working on it to get a permanent solution, but this will take a while.

And I’m wanting to get old projects finished before I move on to the next. And I’m wanting to take on the topic of World War II German trucks. I’m finding these an interesting topic for some reason. Probably because they were so important and I saw during my studies of the Famo also trucks on the pictures in the background.

Now I’m wanting to study these and find out more about these topics.

@barnslayer Good suggestion. I will try and see what I can further do.

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Indy tracks are individual track links. Some kits come with them otherwise they are usually an after market item and can be either metal like MasterClub or Friulmodel or plastic like ModelKasten. There are other manufacturers but those are the most common.

Usually cleaning my airbrush while waiting for some newly applied paint to dry (or cleaning brushes). Often times, I may be cutting masks in preparation for the next colors.

A method that can save time is work “assembly line” fashion, and this can be done with painting, too. For instance, when hand painting details, I’ll paint several items using the same color, one after the other. By the time I’ve done the last one, the paint on the first is usually dry enough for the next step (often a second coat of the same color or some new color).

With some experience, you can plan out your painting processes so that you have very little wasted time or effort. For complicated painting projects, I’ve even gone so far as to write out the steps on a piece of paper to avoid forgetting to do something or having to go back and paint over something that would have been better done in a different sequence.

I use a lot of reverse-masking (since I find that cutting and placement of the masks is usually easier), and I generally try to start with the lightest colors. So, for example, I might paint white, mask that, then maybe paint red over it, then mask the red, and follow both up with the base color. Remove the masks, and I’ll have maybe a white-red rectangle that might form the background for water-slide decals later on. On the same model, I might also have painted on stars or Balkan crosses that will also need colors and masks applied in a certain sequence. In the end, I may have planned out a number of different colors, each painted and masked in a sequence that avoids having to paint over or re-do a color.


Thanks everyone for your great ideas. I will try some of them out.

While I wait for paint to dry or something I will normally clean out my airbrush or work on some small sub assemblies.
If I dont feel like doing that I will usually play World Of Tanks Blitz on my iPad. Its just a small way to pass the time.

All of the above are excellent suggestions. I’ll add the following.

  1. when airbrushing and having a few minutes wait time, I usually clear the air brush by removing the color cup, blowing some thinner through it and cleaning the tip so it’s ready for the upcoming round of spraying.

  2. Do hobby room house keeping. Clean work area and organize for next step. Clutter builds up quickly with this hobby and causes more issues than generally realized. Keeping everything sorted and in its proper place helps save time. Good house keeping in hobby room just like in World Class Manufacturing facility.

BTW - one personal rule of mine is to never have any sort of food or beverage in the hobby room - it’s a production area :slight_smile: My research area is a different story :slight_smile:

Mess causes Stress - It basically fuels procrastination


As I’ve been getting into doing cars, I’ve found the first thing I do is paint the appropriate sprues black, silver, etc. Then, I work on the body. Once I’ve absolutely drowned it in clear coat, I work on the interior etc. That way, by the time the clear is done, I can just slap the car together!

It sounds stupid, but as I wait for minor things to dry I like to do pull-ups, read the math primers for my uni courses, or fly my FPV drone. Keeps the mind busy!

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Time Erasers


  • At the beginning of each model build, I create a new ‘To Do List’ in the ‘Notes’ app on my computer, which in turn is synced to my other devices. That way, if an idea pops up, I can instantly reach for the nearest device and add my thoughts. During each build or paint session, I keep the list and maybe a few related images open on my display for quick reference while glue and paints are drying.


  • I have an ongoing ‘Model Building Spreadsheet’ — a kit inventory and project timesheet of sorts. That’s where I record “actual” bench time — not research. The data goes back to 2013 when I returned to model building.


  • I usually spend a fair amount of time researching a particular subject — hopefully to avoid making drastic errors down the road. However, this has often had the adverse effect of sending me down the “Rabbit Hole” of using up time I could have spent building the model. … I learn a lot though.


  • I used to browse the “old” ‘KitMaker Network’ viewing great content throughout the site. Now with the “new” ‘KitMaker Network,’ I spend even more time taking it all in and not getting anything done. … I learn a lot though.