Screw Therapy I Build Models .....!

I’m just going to quickly introduce myself here and if such a discussion already exists maybe the moderators can reclassify the topic location for me. I have been benefiting from reviews here for quite some time now but now I’m wanting to get a bit more involved with the site. My name is Al and I am 55 years old and was diagnosed officially with Parkinson’s about 3 years ago although we believe that it’s been affecting me for at the very least the last 10 years probably longer.

I know that there are others that continue in the hobby with various conditions affecting their abilities and causing us to learn new ways to do old tasks that we’ve become accustomed to completing with relative ease.

My modeling partner is my eldest son who started within the past 2 years. He has found a you tube channel of a gentleman in England I believe that shares lessons he has learned since having to deal with tremors. Due to poor quality internet where I live I can’t at present watch him but hopefully that will be rectified in the coming months and then I will have another source of information and inspiration from the perspective of my new reality

So I want to put it out there for anyone dealing with any sort of physical challenges to share whatever you have learned through trial and error. We all get old and injuries and other afflictions can cause a shift in how we complete our modeling tasks. I would hope that maybe we can learn together from each other’s perspective and experiences!

I will contribute more into this topic and would invite anyone who has anything to contribute to help others that continue in our hobby despite any sort of challenges being put before you. Thanks for your time and any help you provide will be much appreciated by many more than just myself I suspect. 🥸😎


First of all respect for stepping forward and keeping on going, despite your illness.
Secondly I hope you’ll get the responses you are looking for.
Personally my issues are more of a mental nature, apart from the usual deteriorating eyesight and handsteadiness that come with the addition of years.


I echo @RonW, I hope you get some good info! Sorry I can’t help, but I also echo the sentiment about coming out with your illness and trying to overcome it!


My guess is to increase light and magnification and stick to larger scale projects.


Welcome to our modeling community, you’re going to really enjoy it here. I originally stopped by for a look and never left about 11 years ago.

I’m 73, so you’re a youngster to me, (believe me I wish I was only 55 again). For the last several years I’ve been battling Retina disease in both eyes. I’m now legally blind in the left, and even after 4 laser surgeries and Cataract surgery in my right eye, I still need bi-focals, and computer glasses. Seeing model parts is one issue, but I have almost no depth of field so close up work especially gluing and painting is a nerve racking job. What takes a normal modeler to do in 10 min, takes me a good hour or more with plenty of mistakes and issues, but I just don’t give up.

Here’s my last two builds of what one can do if you just don’t accept " I can’t do it" and keep on trying.



Hi Al,

I’m so sorry to hear of your condition… but also admiring of you positive attitude and continuing engagement with our great hobby despite the limitations it imposes on you!

My father, who loves woodworking, was also diagnosed with Parkinson’ s a few years ago. I fear every time he uses his table saw, but he just takes it slower than before and makes other adjustments (such as getting help with cutting lumber) when needed. The affliction is a bummer, but he just fights back by staying in the game and going on the best he can.

I see that you are doing the same thing - and I salute you for it!

:grin: :+1:t3:


It is amazing that you continue to push forward.
The best suggestion I can offer is to get a couple of the gel type wrist supports that can rest on your bence. They will steady you considerably. My wife uses them for her computer work due to hand tremble and fatigue.
On a separate note , I have T.B.I ( traumatic brain injury) . It is better than it was . One of the things that works for me is to set a timer and model for 20 minutes then rest for 20 and so on.
The headaches are horrid and the memory loss is a bit of a problem .
I can also have problems with my filter , if I think it then it gets said …
As long as I stay in my own very controlled environment it is better .
So with that do what makes you comfortable and please keep posting.


Welcome Al, and firstly respect for talking about your issue and making others aware. That’s always a big step for anyone with any problem but once it’s out there, that’s always a big part of battle won. I have to say I dreaded the day I would need glasses as to me that was always a sure sign I was getting old and over the hill but even with that which probably effects the majority of modellers here, you adapt and overcome.
Chris @Chris_Bryan made a great deal of sense in his approach to limiting his time … You can enjoy the modelling but taking that break will let your body probably reset and allow you to carry on…
Hope you get more advice and guidance which makes modelling easier and it would be great to see some of your efforts when your able to show us.

Joel, even with the eye issues you told us about, people should be inspired by looking at those 2 kits you’ve shown us above. They look sensational. Really neat, clean and precise modelling … Thanks for sharing :+1:


@Johnnych01 . Spoken like a true lover and supporter of the hobby. We are all in this together . The people here are what makes this a awesome place to hang out .
All you guys that struggle with health issues and soldier on with the hobby and supportive of one another are my new heroes.


I think you meant to send this to the OP

Just a quick note to clarify my intent by posting this, I wish to basically start a spot where anyone dealing with any kind of impairment while doing this hobby be it tremors, eye sight, mental health issues like for example PTSD or depression etc where we can all come together and share ideas or tricks we have found on our own would be able to share between each other. I realize that announcing that we may have problems is a difficult thing. I don’t like people seeing my hands for example.

There’s a certain stigma attached to being ill or appearing fine on the outside while on the inside something has happened and as has been already said as we get older some of our parts cease to work as effectively as they did when we were younger.

However the advantage of a forum of this sort is the anomalous nature of it. We can be from different parts of the world, there’s no pictures, very unlikely for anyone to run into someone on the forum at anytime. Everyone has something to provide and no matter how old or young you may be we are all able to learn new things. So my proposal although it maybe in the wrong spot that can always be corrected later by an moderator, we all can learn new things from each other if we are willing. Today we maybe just fine and tomorrow it could all change in a heartbeat.

In my case in 1996 I was perfectly fine and on the job. I responded to what should have been a simple call and in a matter of a few minutes my life was changed by what today is known as a traumatic brain injury the changes came slowly over years mainly temperament but 20 years on that night was to deliver Parkinson’s to a 45 year old cop that couldn’t understand what was happening and then it took another 7 years before we were to find out what and why. Now don’t get me wrong I do appreciate all the kind words that I’ve received today but what happened to me was a risk every person takes every single day. Bad things happen to many good people every single day. I knew the risk when I put the uniform on instead of receiving a fast bullet mine was slow walked into my life it doesn’t matter wether it’s Parkinson’s or a operational stress injury or losing one’s sight slowly all are equally devastating to the individual and their loved ones.

My point is this hobby can be therapeutic if we allow it to be and all of us can benefit from the experiences of others if we are willing to share our little trade craft secrets that may make the hobby that much easier and enjoyable for someone who is experiencing difficulties for whatever reason. From my perspective it’s a worthwhile endeavour to help others just like we teach those new to the hobby easier ways of doing things.

Although I maybe didn’t express my intention as clearly as I thought I would hope that there would be a way for those of us to come together a share our modeling challenges with each other and just maybe learn a thing or two in the process. Hopefully this is the proper area in the forums to host such a topic and if it’s not my apologies and hopefully the admin can make the necessary adjustments to put it where it belongs.

If we give in to whatever impediment we may have then we lose because we give up something that we truly enjoy. At the moment I’m in the second year of helping my son learn the hobby after all isn’t the sharing of knowledge with others more rewarding than just saying screw it I can’t do that anymore because… ?

Anyway I do appreciate all the responses that have been received so far and I hope to at least acknowledge each of you individually as some comments have been quite inspiring!


Good topic man. It’s not always easy for people to reach out and I think doing it on a anonymous forum with like minded people some times gives people the nudge they need.

I am fairly young and haven’t had anything really affect me personally (knock on wood) but I have had extended family with TBI, and cancer and the like, and I think having a outlet like this is very helpful for people.

Good on you and welcome to the forum

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I totally understand about the filter I’m not sure mine was ever that great after serving in the infantry. The time limit is a great idea although I think it applies to more recent TBI’s. When mine occurred that term didn’t exist and since I was able to fight through after being hit I did see :sparkles: but if I had of passed out after the strike to the head I took it’s quite likely that one or more people including myself would’ve died that night. Although I was able to continue and we did eventually get him under control because I had not blacked out the hospital felt there was no concussion although apparently I was left with a dent in my forehead from the impact. I got on a plane went on a course and back to work. No down time as we now know today the brain can take a considerable amount of time to heal. My good friends wife got a TBI and was off work for over two years before she had recovered enough to go back to work. All I can suggest is if your still feeling the effects of the injury make sure you give yourself the down time to allow the brain to heal itself, it’s a resilient organ in the body but as it’s in constant use it takes a long time to heal.

If you don’t then you can follow the same road I followed slowly the temperament begins to change and it becomes much easier to become upset even with those closest to us and we don’t understand why, then a few years on you can start having seizures personally I started experiencing micro seizures that had a fancy name but it’s estimated that over a 10 year period I experienced thousands that went unnoticed and undiagnosed as they mainly happened while sleeping as things progress and as you near the 20 year mark from the injury that’s when things like Parkinson’s, ALS, dementia, along with a host of many other problems can occur as research into head injuries in various sports have started to show us. So it’s vitally important to ensure your brain gets the time to heal right after the injury.

I do intend to make myself a arm rest this summer. For painting I generally steady myself by using my knees as supports for both hold the object and controlling my painting arm. If I become to unsteady then I put everything down for the rest of the day. Assembly can be difficult as my hands can tremor at different rates and my fingers become like big sausages and my feeling in them can diminish also. If I am tired or late on my medication it can become basically impossible to do anything at all. At present my biggest issue is with applying decals so my hard fast rule is if I mess up two in a row I put everything away and go do something else so I don’t get upset. The temperament is much like a backdraft in a fire it gets one breath and it’s gone and it doesn’t matter who or why usually it’s nothing for me it comes from within my chest if I feel it coming I can go to my corner and calm down, if I miss it then it’s like a bomb going off. I make a very poor and petty 5 year old. Depending who gets hit with it that determines how long I beat myself up for losing control. With my background losing control can be a very dangerous state if someone is getting up into my space.

My daughter has been my best medicine but as she is 5 if we happen to have our bad days at the same time it gets to be two little kids going at each other. When at home I have a space to retreat to and calm myself however if my bladder fails before I’ve totally calmed down then another eruption can happen and then I have to start all over again. When out if someone gets in my face about anything the only thing that can stop me is my wife. She is able to get my attention and separate me from the situation before something bad happens. I had a guy get upset with me whilst he was seated in a vehicle and he decided to get aggressive towards a friend he did finally realize that just maybe he decided to get aggressive with someone that wasn’t intimidated by him and decided to close his car window just prior to his extrication out of the car via his window I believe his friends were able to see that he had picked the wrong person to get into a argument with

I do appreciate your tips and for yourself if you’re curious about anything regarding what one can expect as the brain starts to change you will now know where to find me. Best of luck and I wish your recovery goes well for you.

Not sure what you mean. By your reference?

It may slow us down but as long as we fight it can be slowed. The key is to believe that we can do what we want maybe slower and with more difficulty but as long as we continue to enjoy it keeps us out of a wheelchair.

While I do appreciate your input and suggestions. More light is always great. The second suggestion while interesting does present it’s own issues. Mainly by increasing the size of your projects you lose something vital in the therapeutic process having to complete complex tasks your working not only your dexterity, but challenging your brain to continue with complex and difficult tasks along with making your hands work.

On a more personal note I’ve been building a stash for approximately thirty years now. Not to brag but during some of my darkest years I continued to build the stash that’s easily in excess of 500 kits and quite likely over the 1000 kit mark at this point in my life. I would prefer to build them instead of leaving them to my sons.

Shaky hands.
I don’t suffer from anything except aging vision (arms too short to be able to focus on objects in my hands). Reading glasses solves that issue.

However, I have had moments when I needed really steady hands for detail painting.
I found out that if I rest both elbows on the table and let the wrists of the hands press against each other the relative movement between the hand holding the paintbrush and the hand holding the object to be painted can be almost zero.
By slightly pressing the wrists together I keep the lower arms under tension, nerve system is ordering the muscles to act which prevents the muscle control from going into some oscillating state (shaky hands …)


Your very welcome to join me. I also suffer from PTSD from my 18 years on the job and I also have what they term as severe depression and in the last 6 months I’ve added anxiety to my ever growing list of issues. So no worries my intent was to interest anyone that is dealing with any sort of issues to find a safe harbour where we can all share ways we have learned to handle certain issues with others and possibly saving them time in the research and experimentation of ideas that someone else has come up with.

I do hope that you stay with this topic and maybe we can help each other’s projects and perspective on how we feel in our daily activities.

Don’t be shy your quite welcome within this topic. After all we can benefit from each other’s experience and perspective thanks for dropping in.

Hi all,

I suffer also from Parkinson and Depression too - so I have some breaks in my work to create and finish my model. The longest break where four years. So is live - some days I can work on my model and some days not. And no work is going fast . . .


Bronja 78


Bravo Al (and responders) for posting, this surely deserves to initiate a new sub-forum if Boss Jim agrees. I’m trying to think of a catch-all title… Model-making needs patients (?)…Screw therapy we make models (?)…

I imagine the majority of members have reasons somewhere on the therapy spectrum for both working the hobby and participating on this site, physical and/or psychological. On one hand it’s an escape into the fantasy world of model-making, and it also involves engaging with the real world & other like-minded people – and maybe most important of all it keeps the little grey cells on their toes. Not always champagne & caviar of course, we all know how frustrating it can be but hopefully the good far outweighs the bad.

In addition to those dealing with their own health issues there are also some caring for loved ones who have health issues. I’ve been caring for my wife for a couple of years, she’s now in hospital after a bad fall last week at the local mall. I’m not sure why, but now that she’s in the best medical hands and I have our home to myself for several weeks I’ve completely lost my hobby mojo, whereas when I was on 24/7 alert with her at home I was fortunate (compared to others) to be at the bench whenever I wanted most of the time. I worried more then than I’m worrying now so that doesn’t seem to be the reason, the prognosis is positive & with rehab she should come home better than before. Maybe it’s latent shock, that day was fairly confronting (despite her ever-humbling bravery) but it doesn’t feel like that. Maybe it’s just disruption of routine.

Anyhow I wish you & others in less-than-perfect health the very best, you are solid gold inspirations for being here :+1: :tumbler_glass: