Tools for photo etched ladder assembly

Lester Breuer

I am in the process of building a resin freight car kit that contains photo etched ladders that need to be assembled.  Since my post on ladders I have found and am using new  tools and jig to assemble them.  If you are interested in the new tools and jig I use to assemble the ladders, photos and write up are now available on my blog I have to share photos and writeup of modeling projects on my Minneapolis & Northland Railroad Company. If would like to take a look please do at the following link:

Thanks for sharing your technique. Do you use CA to glue the rungs to stiles?

i used a similar jig approach with the photo-etched rungs. I tacked them in place with CA then when set flipped over the ladder and soldered them. I found that the CA didn’t hold the photo-etched rungs really well. I had to add steps at the bottom to customize the ladders for a CPR wood express reefer I’m working on. 

I think I have attached a photo of the car showing the assembled ladders.

Malcolm Vant

Here is the photo of the ladders on my express reefer under construction. 

william darnaby

Because of the number of Yarmouth kits I acquired I eventually broke down a got one the fret bending tools for the stiles so now I had to assemble ladders.  I went with soldering.  Years ago I bought one of the soldering pads offered by Micro-Mark designed to hold parts while soldering.  The pad becomes it’s own jig in a sense as the rungs poke through the holes in the stiles and into the pad.  The ladder can be completely assembled out of the loose rungs and stiles on he pad and then a quick touch of the soldering iron at each rung attaches the rungs into a rigid structure.


Bill Darnaby


Lester Breuer

Malcolm I use Ca to attach the rungs.  I hold the jig downward when applied so the CA does not run back into the jig attaching stile to jig.  As they say, “ Ask me how I know?”  And, to date no problem with the CA failing on the rungs.   Soldering as you did can be used.
Lester Breuer

Thanks Lester.