Gnutley Grange, another pizza saga and the techniques used.

For discussion of the issues faced when building a model or layout - how to replicate wood, what glues to use, exactly how much weathering can a Gnat take, a good source of detailing accessories - you get the picture, I'm sure.

Moderator: GnATTERbox Moderators

User avatar
Jon Randall
Demi-Millegniumer
Demi-Millegniumer
Posts: 995
Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2007 11:18 pm
Location: NW Leics, England
Interests: Narrow gauge railways, modelling

Postby Jon Randall » Fri Jul 20, 2012 3:14 pm

Looking good Steve, have you tried it with a less-green flock to give the impression of lawn thatch :?:
Jon Randall

Needs to stop procrastinating and start modelling

User avatar
Steve Bennett
Millegniumer
Millegniumer
Posts: 4512
Joined: Sat May 17, 2003 12:55 am
Location: Exeter, UK
Interests: railways?

Postby Steve Bennett » Fri Jul 20, 2012 4:05 pm

Jon Randall wrote:Looking good Steve, have you tried it with a less-green flock to give the impression of lawn thatch :?:


Not tried that Jon, not sure i have anything that would be light enough, as soaking in PVA does tend to darken the ground foam quite a lot.
Will see what i can find.

For anybody looking for small quantities of static grass to play with, the ebay shop I used does small 10gram packs in various blends, which makes it quite cheap to give it a try for the first time. They can be found here:
http://stores.ebay.co.uk/warworldltd
The one I used is their Spring blend, as I wanted it quite bright to make bog or marsh plants for Gnutley Pond. For longer meadow or hillside grass, you would probably be better with one of the other seasons which seem to contain more straw or burnt grass colouring.
Steve Bennett
Sidelines
http://www.pepper7.com

User avatar
PeterH
Seasoned Campaigner
Seasoned Campaigner
Posts: 448
Joined: Sun Sep 28, 2008 6:54 am
Location: Auckland, New Zealand
Interests: Railway history, drinking beer

Postby PeterH » Sat Jul 21, 2012 11:20 pm

Looks good Steve; I'll try that.

I've found that static grass looks bulkier, and stands up better, if I apply it to tiny dots of PVA rather than a continuous area. I usually have a substrate like teased out polyfiber or your not-so-good tufts. Then apply the PVA by dabbing off a toothpick. Then just trickle the static grass on from my fingers.
Peter

User avatar
Pete
True GnATTERbox
True GnATTERbox
Posts: 36
Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2005 3:45 am
Location: Wollongong, australia
Interests: railway modelling, Bonsai, gardening

watching carefully . . .

Postby Pete » Sun Jul 22, 2012 6:46 am

Hi guys . . .

I have been watching steve's efforts to date, and must confess I always marvel at the quality of his work !! :idea:

In terms of the paint Steve uses, we have a Dulux product out here in Australia called Tuscan Effects . . . It's a thick exterior paint with suspended said particles. I have found it works an absolute treat on brick walls around our house . . . and shd do the same in the modelling environment.

Other manufacturers have been introducing their versions too, but I have not used these. :D

I am also intrigued by the idea of taking OO track and Gn15-ifying it it! I have just been told that because Peco On30 track is now so little called for here in Oz, I wd have to buy an entire box of it @ way more than $A100 !As points are almost $A32 each, it makes more sense to take a much more popular product (bog-standard OO track) and make it work within my Gn15 world/s. What's more, I think I can work with much more rigid Set Track . . . :D
Pete (Less Than Permanent Way) Heininger

User avatar
Steve Bennett
Millegniumer
Millegniumer
Posts: 4512
Joined: Sat May 17, 2003 12:55 am
Location: Exeter, UK
Interests: railways?

Postby Steve Bennett » Sun Jul 22, 2012 11:02 am

PeterH wrote:I've found that static grass looks bulkier, and stands up better, if I apply it to tiny dots of PVA.........


Yes, thats what I started with, but found that it didnt hold the fibres upright for long enough and they ended up a bit flat.
Have only just started experimenting, so could change direction again yet.
Pretty happy with this method so far, quick, easy and I have a lot of clumps now to use :lol:
Steve Bennett

Sidelines

http://www.pepper7.com

User avatar
Steve Bennett
Millegniumer
Millegniumer
Posts: 4512
Joined: Sat May 17, 2003 12:55 am
Location: Exeter, UK
Interests: railways?

Re: watching carefully . . .

Postby Steve Bennett » Sun Jul 22, 2012 11:14 am

Pete wrote:I have been watching steve's efforts to date, and must confess I always marvel at the quality of his work !! :idea:


Thanks Pete, its surprising what you can hide from the camera :wink:

Those textured paints with the sand in are very useful for scenic work. I prefer them to plaster as a scenic base, more flexible, dont crack or chip leaving white bits and come in many colours. Depends on the formula of the ones you have over there, but I find I can add other stuff in to change colour, lighten or darken by adding acrylic paint, add plaster or sand for different textures or to make it thicker. Great stuff to mess around with :lol:
Steve Bennett

Sidelines

http://www.pepper7.com

User avatar
Adrian
Demi-Millegniumer
Demi-Millegniumer
Posts: 718
Joined: Mon Apr 27, 2009 8:18 am
Location: Melbourne Australia
Interests: model railways including Gn15

Postby Adrian » Mon Jul 23, 2012 12:30 am

G'day Pete
You wrote:
I have just been told that because Peco On30 track is now so little called for here in Oz.

Well it must be because you live in NSW as have had no trouble buying single lengths from Branch Line in Croydon (Vic). (Usual disclaimer)

Yes I know that that's about a days drive for you and would probably cost about $100 in petrol but unless I am sadly mistaken it is still available.

Not sure if postage is a viable option or not. Might be a bit difficult to pack safely.

Cheers
Adrian Hoad
I might be daft but not stupid.

Artizen
Seasoned Campaigner
Seasoned Campaigner
Posts: 399
Joined: Thu Apr 15, 2010 12:52 pm
Location: Western New Zealand
Interests: Gn15 (1:24), 7/8ths (1:12) and 0n28 (1:43)

Postby Artizen » Mon Jul 23, 2012 3:41 am

I have the same problem here in Brisbane. Unless I want a full box of Peco 0n30 track, the retailers won't get it in. I ended up modifying Peco code 100 flex track. A more satisfying result in my opinion as you have timber sleepers at the correct spacing. The turnouts were heavily rebuilt as well. Some of them still work. If you are interested in going that way I can post photos.

Hijack over.
Ian Hodgkiss
The Steamy Pudding (in progress)
West of Worcester (in progress)
Waikikamukau Sawmilling (planned)
Brisbane, Australia

User avatar
KEG
Millegniumer
Millegniumer
Posts: 1248
Joined: Mon Feb 06, 2006 11:42 am
Location: Duesseldorf
Interests: creative Nonsense

Postby KEG » Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:41 am

You might not be able to read it (German), but there are plenty of pictures http://www.die-feldbahnsinnigen.de/forum/viewtopic.php?f=20&t=475&hilit=Gras

I like the idea with the thumptacks as bases for electronic grassroots.
And of course my idea, of simply taking old dishwshing brushes apart:



Image

They sell them over here at the 1 Euro shops.

Have Fun

Juergen

User avatar
Steve Bennett
Millegniumer
Millegniumer
Posts: 4512
Joined: Sat May 17, 2003 12:55 am
Location: Exeter, UK
Interests: railways?

Postby Steve Bennett » Mon Jul 23, 2012 12:51 pm

Thnks for the link Juegen, some more ideas to try :lol:
I do like the idea of the bolt and washer, useful for getting more upright clumps. The thumb tacks are a bit bigger than I want at the moment, but will remember that one.
Will have to try some tea or coffee for the base too, as it will give a bit of variety in colour.
Thanks again.
Steve Bennett

Sidelines

http://www.pepper7.com

User avatar
Adrian
Demi-Millegniumer
Demi-Millegniumer
Posts: 718
Joined: Mon Apr 27, 2009 8:18 am
Location: Melbourne Australia
Interests: model railways including Gn15

Postby Adrian » Wed Jul 25, 2012 7:19 am

G'day (down under) folks.

Just had a trip to Branchline. Phone #(03) 9723 1211

If your interested in On30 Peco track they have a fair swag in stock and are prepared to post it.
Post is about $10 for between 1 piece up to a full box anywhere in Aus..
If you are prepared to have them cut the track into 18" lengths the postage would come down a smiggin, just not sure how much.

As I have said before usual disclaimer, although I have been a satisfied customer since the early 80's.

Just thought that you might like to know ....
secondary hijack over ......
now returns to corner and starts sucking thumb again.

Cheers
Adrian Hoad

I might be daft but not stupid.

only15
True GnATTERbox
True GnATTERbox
Posts: 61
Joined: Mon Jul 12, 2010 4:23 am
Location: Tasmania, Australia
Interests: All things Minimum!

Postby only15 » Thu Jul 26, 2012 4:35 am

For the guys wanting peco On30 track in Aus, PM me please I may be able to help you.

Cheers, Nathan
Remember, the light at the end of the tunnel may very well be an on-coming train! ;)
Taylor Creek Tramway - 35n12
21 years young,
Tasmania, Australia.

User avatar
Steve Bennett
Millegniumer
Millegniumer
Posts: 4512
Joined: Sat May 17, 2003 12:55 am
Location: Exeter, UK
Interests: railways?

Grass Clumps Update

Postby Steve Bennett » Sat Aug 18, 2012 12:33 pm

Thought it was about time I bored you guys with an update on my experiments with static grass clumps :lol: so you might want to switch to another thread now :D

OK, here we go, first up for this I have switched to a shorter length of fibres than I was using before, Why you may ask? Well, I thought they might stand up better and for once I was right.
On the previous tests I used 6mm length fibres and found that they tended to not stay upright long enough for the glue to dry, so went over to using 2mm ones instead and they are working much better (for me)
Here is the colour pallet I got to play with:

Image

Same supplier that I got the previous batch from, as they were reasonably priced and supply in small quantities, ideal to experiment with. The four different blends of colours that are shown here, they sell as a 4 seasons pack, so seemed ideal to try them to see which are most useful. Their ebay shop can be found HERE

Right, on with the experiments. After searching around the web, looking at techniques others used to create clumps, I got totally confused and had so many ideas buzzing around in my head, i really didnt know where to start. So time to relax with a cup of coffee and well, I had to keep the coffee grounds didnt I :lol:
Mixing the coffee grounds with some dilute PVA, I set to work and the clumps were looking pretty good. Once dry though and taking them off the waxed paper, they were very delicate, quite a few falling apart. The size of the granuals were just too course to bind together properly.
So it was time to try again and this time the contents of a used teabag were put to use. The much finer texture of the tea was a lot easier to work with, little blobs were easily formed on the waxed paper, but best of all, once dry, they just came away so easily from the paper and the base stayed really flexible, which will be useful for applying to uneven surfaces.
Here is what they looked like:

Image

So how to test them?
Well I made up three little bases to scenic up. They are not identical but good enough to show the steps used. The round bases are 80mm diameter to give a sense of scale, yes I should have included a coin or something :roll:
Anyway, here is the first one:

Image

The ground surface was first painted a dark brown, then dried tea applied to a coating of dilute white glue. Once all the glue had been soaked up by the tea, more dilute glue was applied, then the first light covering of static grass applied. This is the autumn colouring shown earlier.

Once dry, time to move onto the next step, adding the grass clumps. To give the colour variation, i used the winter colour for this to give a bit of a burnt look to them. A bit more about sticking them on after the pic:

Image

As I hope the pic shows, smaller clumps were used to blend in with the previously applied layer, and larger ones to rise above and create mounds to give an uneven surface.
Sticking them on couldnt be easier. A small pool of PVA/white glue on a piece of scrap plastic or similar. Pick up the clumps with some fine tipped tweezers, dip in the glue, then place in position. Might sound tedious, but to do this piece, probably too less than 10 minutes.

Now I could have left it there, but these bases will probably be used in scenic modelling demonstrations at shows, which I do occassionally. Part of these is on making plants from paper, so I had to include a few of them too :lol:

Image

The paper plants are not fixed in place, most are on short wires just pushed into the base, while others are just placed on there. The positioning may well be changed about a bit, but I thought it worth showing how the different textures can be built up.

Well I guess I have gone on far too long, but hope there might be something useful in all the above.
Steve Bennett

Sidelines

http://www.pepper7.com

User avatar
Jon Randall
Demi-Millegniumer
Demi-Millegniumer
Posts: 995
Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2007 11:18 pm
Location: NW Leics, England
Interests: Narrow gauge railways, modelling

Postby Jon Randall » Sat Aug 18, 2012 1:44 pm

Very gnice Steve, I like it a lot, very effective. 8)
Jon Randall

Needs to stop procrastinating and start modelling

User avatar
Mike Lee
GnatterBox Centurion
GnatterBox Centurion
Posts: 136
Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2005 10:19 am
Location: North Riding of Yorkshire - England
Interests: Narrow Gauge Railways/Modelling

Postby Mike Lee » Sat Aug 18, 2012 4:31 pm

Looking good Steve :D One of my next techniques to (try and) master :!: One question, how do you apply your static grass, sorry if I missed the explination :?:
Mike Lee

You should always go to the last one first!
You should cross all your bridges before you come to them!
Life is too short for counting rivets!
What happened to things that you dropped before Newton discovered Gravity?

User avatar
Glen A
Millegniumer
Millegniumer
Posts: 1311
Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 8:34 pm
Location: Christchurch, New Zealand
Interests: Gn15, G 1:24

Postby Glen A » Sat Aug 18, 2012 9:11 pm

Great ideas to try.
Thanks Steve!

User avatar
Adrian
Demi-Millegniumer
Demi-Millegniumer
Posts: 718
Joined: Mon Apr 27, 2009 8:18 am
Location: Melbourne Australia
Interests: model railways including Gn15

Postby Adrian » Sun Aug 19, 2012 3:08 am

G'day Steve

Like the look of the 'clumps'. The only problem that I have is that I only drink instant coffee and never tea. Will have to find an alternative aggregate.

On the previous tests I used 6mm length fibres and found that they tended to not stay upright long enough for the glue to dry, so went over to using 2mm ones instead and they are working much better (for me)

Have you tried 6mm grass on a bed of previous laid and dried 2mm grass ?
Maybe the 2mm grass would hold the longer stuff upright until the glue dried ?

Also what glue are you using ? If diluted PVA have you tried a thicker mix ?

Just a couple of thoughts,
Cheers
Adrian Hoad

I might be daft but not stupid.

User avatar
Steve Bennett
Millegniumer
Millegniumer
Posts: 4512
Joined: Sat May 17, 2003 12:55 am
Location: Exeter, UK
Interests: railways?

Postby Steve Bennett » Sun Aug 19, 2012 11:55 am

Thanks guys, I did have fun playing with this stuff.
I need to create some space first, but will post some pics of my setup for creating the clumps later.
Steve Bennett

Sidelines

http://www.pepper7.com

User avatar
Steve Bennett
Millegniumer
Millegniumer
Posts: 4512
Joined: Sat May 17, 2003 12:55 am
Location: Exeter, UK
Interests: railways?

Postby Steve Bennett » Sun Aug 19, 2012 12:13 pm

Adrian wrote:Like the look of the 'clumps'. The only problem that I have is that I only drink instant coffee and never tea. Will have to find an alternative aggregate.


I'm the same, the teabags are only used for modelling and for occassional visitors :lol: I use the cheapest I can find, a box of 100 teabags is less than a pound here and has kept me in modelling materials for years. I dont suppose there is quite the same market for them downunder, though with all the ex-pats out there, I would have thought so.

Have you tried 6mm grass on a bed of previous laid and dried 2mm grass ?
Maybe the 2mm grass would hold the longer stuff upright until the glue dried ?

Also what glue are you using ? If diluted PVA have you tried a thicker mix ?


Not tried that YET, thanks for the idea, I have some rejects I could use to play with.
Have tried both dilute and neat PVA with varyng success. Using the tea mixed with dilute PVA is giving much better and consistant results.
Using neat PVA you have to work very quick, well it is summer here at the moment and it forms a skin on pretty quickly.
More experiments to come I'm sure :wink:
Steve Bennett

Sidelines

http://www.pepper7.com

User avatar
Steve Bennett
Millegniumer
Millegniumer
Posts: 4512
Joined: Sat May 17, 2003 12:55 am
Location: Exeter, UK
Interests: railways?

Another Grass Clumps Update

Postby Steve Bennett » Sun Aug 19, 2012 4:10 pm

As requested, a bit more info on how I do the clumps.

First up, here is my setup, more detail after the pic:

Image

First up the engine that drives this, is a cheap flyswat/tea strainer purchased from ebay. I decided that for the price (just over £10) that it was safer for somebody else do the electrics and it would have cost almost as much to source the components. My only complaint with it is that the grounding lead is a bit short for working on a layout, though easily solved with a longer lead and another alligator clip.
Next up in the centre is the plate I use to create the electro static field. This is simply a piece of a pie dish taped to a sheet of MDF, the rim of the dish left on to clip the alligator clip to. Have position the waxed paper which came from a self adhesive address label on the plate with a few blobs of the tea and PVA mix.
Thats about it, except to say that I work on a sheet of ordinary printer paper. This makes collecting the excess static grass very easy and it's easy to see where it is. The fibres dont stick to printer paper and it is cheap to replace if it gets glue on it.

OK, a bit more on the clumps using the longer 6mm length fibres.
My problem with the longer fibres has been to get them to remain upright for long enough to get a dense clump. What appears to happen is that the first few to touch down deflect those that follow, so the clumps look a little sparse.
This next photo shows the long fibres applied to the blobs of tea/PVA:

Image

A little thin I think you will agree, though they do have their uses, not quite what I'm aiming for.
So, the next step after shaking off the excess, is to apply some of the short 2mm fibres while the glue is still wet. This is the result I get from doing that:

Image

A lot denser I think you will agree and more like the commercially available clumps.

Bored yet? :lol:
Nearly there, but I had to try Adrians suggestion of applying the long fibres on top of the clumps of short ones. So taking some that were done previously, a drop or two of dilute PVA was applied to each clump and allowed to soak in a bit, then the long fibres applied. Here is the result:

Image

I think we can call these a success too, so thanks Adrian.
These may not be as good as the commercial ones, but by varying the techniques, more variety is possible and after the initial setup costs, it costs very little to make as many as you want. Only problem I have s finding somewhere to store them all :lol:
Oh and did I mention, it's good fun too :wink:
Steve Bennett

Sidelines

http://www.pepper7.com

User avatar
Adrian
Demi-Millegniumer
Demi-Millegniumer
Posts: 718
Joined: Mon Apr 27, 2009 8:18 am
Location: Melbourne Australia
Interests: model railways including Gn15

Postby Adrian » Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:22 am

G'day Steve
Glad to be of help.
These may not be as good as the commercial ones

Every bit as good, just different _____ and lots cheaper !

I assume that you will be selling the surplus at the next exhibition you attend ?
Cheers.
Adrian Hoad

I might be daft but not stupid.

User avatar
DCRfan
Millegniumer
Millegniumer
Posts: 1902
Joined: Fri May 23, 2003 7:26 am
Location: Kiwi in Ottawa, Canada
Interests: Very narrow gauge, military & industrial railways

Re: Another Grass Clumps Update

Postby DCRfan » Mon Aug 20, 2012 6:27 am

Steve Bennett wrote:As I think we can call these a success too, so thanks Adrian.
These may not be as good as the commercial ones, but by varying the techniques, more variety is possible and after the initial setup costs, it costs very little to make as many as you want. Only problem I have s finding somewhere to store them all :lol: Oh and did I mention, it's good fun too :wink:


I have a layout with lots of 'storage area' for grass clumps :wink: It's just a pity they are Gn15 not 1:35th scale :lol: :lol:
Paul
Gnu Zealand

User avatar
Adrian
Demi-Millegniumer
Demi-Millegniumer
Posts: 718
Joined: Mon Apr 27, 2009 8:18 am
Location: Melbourne Australia
Interests: model railways including Gn15

Postby Adrian » Mon Aug 20, 2012 6:43 am

G'day Paul
It's just a pity they are Gn15 not 1:35th scale

I was going to offer you the use of some of the fresnel lenses that I have until I realised that they would make them look bigger not smaller. :oops: :oops:

Cheers
Adrian Hoad

I might be daft but not stupid.

User avatar
Steve Bennett
Millegniumer
Millegniumer
Posts: 4512
Joined: Sat May 17, 2003 12:55 am
Location: Exeter, UK
Interests: railways?

Postby Steve Bennett » Mon Aug 20, 2012 9:08 am

Adrian wrote:I assume that you will be selling the surplus at the next exhibition you attend ?


:lol: No, I dont intend to start selling these, will leave that to the big boys who are better equipped for mass production :D
Steve Bennett

Sidelines

http://www.pepper7.com

User avatar
Steve Bennett
Millegniumer
Millegniumer
Posts: 4512
Joined: Sat May 17, 2003 12:55 am
Location: Exeter, UK
Interests: railways?

Re: Another Grass Clumps Update

Postby Steve Bennett » Mon Aug 20, 2012 9:14 am

DCRfan wrote:I have a layout with lots of 'storage area' for grass clumps :wink: It's just a pity they are Gn15 not 1:35th scale :lol: :lol:


:lol: Sorry Paul, I'm not sure how to go about making them in 1:35th, not a scale I have worked in for many years.
Perhaps some of the military modelling forums will be able to help :lol:
Steve Bennett

Sidelines

http://www.pepper7.com


Return to “Modelling Matters”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests

cron