What's on my work bench

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This topic contains 61 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by Avatar Lewis Holden 2 months ago.

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  • #4907
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    Lewis Holden
    Keymaster

    I’ve been working on getting NZ120.org back up and running, finally had some time to get back into my shed and working on the NZ120 modules today. Got a fair amount done, here’s a two pics of the modules as they currently are. As you can see I’ve used 5mm plywood as the fascia on these modules, and XPS as the base (a change from the original use of plywood for the baseboard and 5mm MDF for the fascia. I’ve discovered MDF seems to attract mould like anything and have started cutting up and getting rid of what I’ve got.

    Next step is cutting the 5mm plywood into backscene boards, which will be removeable.

    #4918
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    Lewis Holden
    Keymaster

    Backscene boards have been added this week. My eventual goal is to be able to display the layout at shows so I’ll need decent backscenes. Luckily I had enough 5mm plywood to cut into the right-sized sheets. I’ll take them off for now (next step is tracklaying, yay!) and come back to them when the rest of the layout is good to go, but at least I’ve got the boards cut to the right sizes etc.

    #4919
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    ECMT
    Participant

    Nice work. I had an idea to use 3mm MDF for back scene boards – maybe MDF in your train room/shed may be more susceptible to mould than inside a house.

    #4920
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    Lewis Holden
    Keymaster

    Yeah I think you’re right, the shed is damp compared to where I had my model railway stuff stored previously (in the garage) so mould will inevitably grow I guess.

    #4922
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    beakaboy
    Participant

    I have issues with mould in my shed as well. Can usually smell it during the winter when you walk in and it coats the MDF in a white mould. Have wiped the sheets down in the summer and it seems to help, but I will be using hardboard as back drop material as I got free supplies of it prepainted.

    #4969
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    Lewis Holden
    Keymaster

    I’ve now got the loop running. Unfortunately, there’s a bit more work required getting the ends to line up perfectly, the issue appears to be that even though the track is cut from the same pieces, all sorts of fun things (e.g. twisting, warping and bending) occur to the tracks which puts it out of line with the other module ends. Nevermind – I have two locos (DX and a Conrail SD40-2) that can do the full loop no worries.

    One issue I have uncovered though is that the Atlas Code 55 points / turnouts aren’t spring like Peco turnouts are, and so the switch blades actually move around a bit. This is very frustrating as the SD40-2 can’t go through one set of points without them switching themselves and sending the loco in two different directions.

    #4987
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    Lewis Holden
    Keymaster
    #4989
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    Trackgang
    Participant

    Nice bit of progress there Lewis. The scenes are starting to take shape nicely.

    #5011
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    Lewis Holden
    Keymaster

    Bit of plastering… I finally got hold of “Sculptamold” which Luke Towan uses on his excellent scenery tutorials (video below). Sculptamold is a combination of plaster and paper mache, it (should!) set without much shrinkage and can adhere to anything. It’s made with one part water two parts plaster. It mixes together pretty easily with a large spatula.

    I started small as I’m not sure what the results will be like, so just did two cups of Sculptamold to begin with. The layer on the polystyrene is pretty thin, probably no more than 5mm. I’ll probably do a second coat to smooth things out.

    The interesting thing about working with Sculptamold is that once it’s partially set (after about 10-15 mins) you can come back to it and work it, mainly to smooth out the roughness. In the pics you see below I went back to the Sculptamold after 15 minutes and smoothed it out. I’ll post pics of what it looks like setting.

    #5059
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    Lewis Holden
    Keymaster

    Bit more work tonight on the modules, finished the plastering and did a coat of gresso primer, followed by a coat of burnt sienna (brown) as a base before I add dirt etc.

    #5061
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    Lewis Holden
    Keymaster

    Bit of work tonight on putting down the dirt layer. First, a mixture of one part Modge Podge and two parts water is brushed over the areas I want the dirt to stick (everywhere except the riverbed itself), and the dirt and grout mixture is spread over the model using some pantyhose (borrowed from my wife!) over an old spray can lid. I’m pretty happy with the cover achieved.

    #5067
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    Lewis Holden
    Keymaster

    Dirt layer is now down, so tonight I started on a few jobs I’d been putting off on my most complete module:

    – Painting the fascia black
    – Making bridge abutments and supports
    – Painting the rust on the rails

    You wouldn’t think it but painting the fascia seems to have had the biggest impact visually. It forces you to look at the model scene. Previously I used dark green but black seems to be way more effective.

    Bridge abutments and supports were made with grey modelling clay. We’ll see how grey it actually dries, but I’m guessing I’ll need to paint them concrete grey.

    Track rust is the usual mix of Humbrol enamel paints, track will need to be cleaned once the paint is dry.

    Next steps are cleaning up the track heads, painting the riverbed as per Luke Towan’s method and adding some rocks (mainly to cover up the plaster around the supports), more dirt on the riverbanks, possibly painting the supports and abutments, guide rails on the bridge… and then maybe it’s time to add water!

    #5068
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    Trackgang
    Participant

    Making good progress Lewis. Deciding on the type of riverbed to do can be challenging. Whether you gather 100’s of little stones, or sandy/muddy, full flow river or small flow or tidal estuary with lots of rushes and embankment growth like flaxes. Is your scene based on a prototypical one?

    #5070
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    Lewis Holden
    Keymaster

    Nah not really… kinda the Wairarapa line, but could be anywhere. Previously I had what could be called a braded river but now I’m not so sure. I might go for a wider stream but a shallow one. Perhaps tidal, I don’t know…

    #5073
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    Trackgang
    Participant

    Go trolling the pictures and photos you can find and I’m sure you’ll find a scene or details you’ll like. Then you’ll have guide to how to make it look genuine.

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