HobbyZone Modular Workshop System OM02u Three-Tilting-Drawer Module Review
|Date of Review||March 2022||Manufacturer||HobbyZone|
|Subject||OM02u Three-Tilting-Drawer Module||Part Number||OM02u|
|Pros||Precision cut wood||Cons||See text|
We first became aware of HobbyZone's modular workbench system back in 2016 and have looked at a number of modules in the years that followed. This is the first new module released by HobbyZone in the last few years, and like the OM02a and OM02b, this OM02u features full-width drawers. The OM02a is a three-drawer module, just like this one, but it is laid out to store tools or gear that would fit within the provided dividers or lay inside the drawer if you opted to leave out the dividers (which I've done with some of my drawers). What's different about this OM02u is different storage layout inside, half-height drawer fronts so you can see inside with the drawers closed, and a new track system that allows the drawer to extend out and pivot down without falling out. The top drawer tilts down while sitting on the table top, but this module should be sitting atop another module in order to bring out and tilt down the lower drawers.
This module assembles like their previous modules with one exception. As with their revised production design, smaller parts are connected together by tabs that must be cut away before assembly. I used a sharp hobby saw and X-Acto knife to remove and clean up those tabs. The magnets were installed in the sides and top/bottom of the module after verifying the polarity of the magnets to those installed in my other modules. The five parts of the enclosure were glued together using Gorilla non-foaming wood glue and set aside to dry. After studying the instructions (which were hard to read), I assembled the five parts of each drawer with wood glue and set them aside as well. The two dividers that are included are left loose so the drawers can be reconfigured at will. What is different about this module over any of the others is the use of hex bolts (the same size hex driver used for the build plates of my 3D printers). Four go inside the enclosure to serve as drawer tracks, and six are inserted through holes at the rear of the module and into the rear of the drawers. When the bolts are tightened (not over-tightened as these will strip out the wood holes), the bolt heads slide down tracks machined to the insides of the enclosure slides to allow the drawers to move smoothly and pivot down without falling out. Ingenious engineering!
So here's a look (photo above) at the inside of the top drawer while it is pivoted down. You can see the movable dividers inside and their possible positions. In my testing, I only could use one divider with the items I had. According to HobbyZone, each module can hold up to 63 of the 10ml eyedropper paint bottles like those used by Vallejo, Hataka, Mig, AK, etc. The specifications say that a container of up to 43mm in diameter/thickness will fit in these drawers and my Tamiya cement bottle just happens to be 43mm. The drawers will close with bottles of that side inside though the height of the cap must also be factored in as the decal solutions that are in the same sized bottles won't fit with their higher lids/handles.
I had folks emailing me to see if the module would hold Mission Models paint bottles, and as you can see here, you can eight bottles per drawer (24 per module) with room left over for something else.
Here's a look with Oil Brushers and streaking pens in the left photo above while the right photo shows Gundam paint markers and a Molitow chrome pen (and no divider).
The drawers Gunze and Tamiya 10ml bottles as well as the larger 41mm diameter Tamiya paint bottles.
The drawers work very well with Akan paints (18 bottles per drawer/54 bottles per module).
Finally, here's a look at another batch of products that fit in these drawers including Comart 1oz paint bottles or the Vallejo/Mission Models/Mig/etc. 80ml/2oz paint bottles.
If you need a different solution for your paint storage needs for your hobby bench, this new module may be what you seek. You can see this and other modules at the HobbyZone USA website (www.hobbyzone.biz).
My thanks to HobbyZone.biz for this review sample.