New year, new layout.

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.

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david colley jnr
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New year, new layout.

Postby david colley jnr » Fri Dec 31, 2010 3:27 pm

Well, actually, its a diorama... :oops:

Oh well, it's my first attempt in this scale, so at least it's a start!

Based on a sheet of A4, and working around the shadow box idea, not too sure where it is or what the prototype does, but i'm sure it will all become clear as things develop!

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The track plan.

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The stage is set

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Note the shed point has now been pushed a bit further over. The running line passed a little close to the shed :shock:

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Don't laugh :lol: . My first (and so far only!) example of weathering.

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Track bed blocked out in grey. Starting to make sense now...

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Trying to decide which paint looks best, flat brown or a more unusual metalic bronze. I really want to keep away from the red oxide colour.

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The rail here is typical colour which in my opinion would be described as being metallic brown? What's your thoughts on that?

Well, that's the start, we shall see how far I get before it gets put on the dreaded shelf of no return!

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Re: New year, new layout.

Postby Gerry Bullock » Fri Dec 31, 2010 4:21 pm

david colley jnr wrote:Well, actually, its a diorama... :oops:

Oh well, it's my first attempt in this scale, so at least it's a start!

Image
Don't laugh :lol: . My first (and so far only!) example of weathering.

David

Having blown up your weathered container I can see no reason to laugh David, looks great to me.
I am puzzled by its location on the layout though; now looks as though it's partly outside the box :?: :?
So little time, so many ideas!!!!! GerryB.
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Postby Willow Creek Traction » Fri Dec 31, 2010 4:28 pm

Don't know what you've got over there David; over here PollyScale has a Railroad Tie Brown which is a kind of greyish brown.

On my monitor a couple of the colors, including Railroad Tie Brown, look different from real-life hues.
http://www.testors.com/category/137370?n=1

Hey! Humbrol is from over there and there may be a color listing for them floating around here somewhere. BRB. Well, huh, don't see anything.

Not sure how to begin looking at UK manufacturers of RR paints.
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Postby jacko » Fri Dec 31, 2010 9:34 pm

Having blown up your weathered container I can see no reason to laugh David, looks great to me.
I am puzzled by its location on the layout though; now looks as though it's partly outside the box


could he be thinking partly outside the box :lol:
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Postby scott b » Fri Dec 31, 2010 11:22 pm

To put the cat amongst the pigeons, I like the container, looks great BUT I don`t think it will look right in the diorama. I think it will look to heavy on the one side of the layout , I think you should think about something more open and if you want a view block behind it some plants or trees behind the shed.
Then instead of a big wall at the front of a small diorama you have something to invite the viewer to look at filling it with detail.
I bet that really does not help you at all does it :roll:
The container does really look great though.
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Postby david colley jnr » Sat Jan 01, 2011 7:56 am

could he be thinking partly outside the box


As always! :D

Gerry and Scott, you're both absolutely right! the container just looked too big and clumsy when i had built the box and put it in place. Therefore I made the decision to push it further into the corner and extend the section of track between the two points. I'll be chopping it up sometime today. Any one fancy the arse end of a container?
This also made more clearance between the running line and the shed, so i think the hedge will be place towards the back, between the shed and track and move the fence to where the hedgerow was, perhaps a low relief shed or something to break it up?
I ought to do another plan to try and figure things out a little better... Funny how the idea seemed to be fine until it went into the "frame".

Forrest, thanks for the help with the paint. That testors color looks about right to me. Will have to try and mix something up to replicate it. You see, I bought a job lot of GamesWorkshop paint off e-bay, which came with thirty popular paints, inks and washes and a couple of detail brushes and a couple of dry brushes. Cost? £15! So if I can, I'd rather use something from that selection...
Has anyone else used this paint range to paint rail? it seemed to pull away, leaving chunks of metal exposed. I've washed it in detergent, so should have got rid of oil, so could it be surface tension in the paint? Could I add a drop of detergent to the paint?

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Cut and stained the sleepers last night. They now look brown, but a little weathering when in situ will be in order...

The wife and son both have the dreaded lurgy. I seem to be fighting it off, but we was all in bed by ten last night... Happy New Year :evil: "
"start the year as you mean to go on..." Directing expletives towards the wife everytime she wakes you up with her coughing? :oops: Not sure that's what is meant.... She does sound like a donkey dying from swallowing a fog horn.... :roll:

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Postby Artizen » Sat Jan 01, 2011 10:55 am

I have been told that Games Workshop paints are made by Vallejo so they are high quality. I used Windsor & Newton Burnt Umber watercolour paint for my rail sides and once it was fully dry, I had to scrape the tops of the rail clean with a metal edge to remove it. The Burnt Umber dried absolutely dead flat so it looks really good in photos although maybe a little dark.

If you add detergent to paint, try a small area first to see if you have in fact stuffed it up. I added detergent to my water for mixing plaster for bricks and all I have now is a froth problem when pouring the mix into the mould.
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Postby david colley jnr » Sat Jan 01, 2011 11:51 am

Cheers for the heads up, Ian!

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Container cut up....

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Now have two for the price of one!

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Placed where it will live. Not quite so imposing now, but they are a bit on the large side in real life and that's what I wanted to get across.

The cutting made loads of dust, so I had to give them a bath. Now just got to re-do the weathering powders! :oops: All part of the learning process! :lol:

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Postby bluey1989 » Sat Jan 01, 2011 2:27 pm

Looking good David, looking forward to seeing this develop.

I must admit that I fine games workshop paints great, slightly expensive but they look great and are all matt so you don't get the unwanted gloss finish

I would never go back to humbrol (oil or acyrlic) now...

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Postby michael » Sat Jan 01, 2011 6:00 pm

Well, that's the start, we shall see how far I get before it gets put on the dreaded shelf of no return!


Happy new year David, you made me laugh with your comment, the layout/diorama has started very well, the weathering on the container looks good to me.
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Postby Colin Peake » Sat Jan 01, 2011 7:15 pm

Very interesting David, I can't think where the inspiration for the container came from! :roll: I'm looking forward to what might appear on here in due course...

I've never had a problem with Games Workshop paints, usually pricey (you have picked up a bargain) but very good quality. The rail may need degreasing with white spirit rather than detergent, the component that makes dishes sparkle also stops paint sticking IIRC.

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Postby Mark Goodwin » Sat Jan 01, 2011 8:08 pm

David,

I use both Games Workshop and Vallejo acrylics and I have never had a problem with them either adhering to a surface or peeling from it. I have applied by both brush and air brush, including mixing of both brands. However, care must be taken when applying oil based paints to an acyrlic surface (or is it the other way round) as one won't adhere to the other.

All painting surfaces must be clean of grease and have a keyed surface (lightly sanded, scrubbed with an abrasive cream cleanser - e.g.Cif), thoroughly dry and primed before colours are applied. Washes and transparents help with shading and highlighting detail. A warm room aids the drying process that can be slowed down by our recent very cold weather - there are certain temperatures when it is not suitable to use acrylics. I also assist the drying process with careful use of a hair dryer - as the paints are water based. I would not revert to enamels. Modern specialist acrylics are brilliant, easy to use and clean up.
Hope this helps,
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Postby Willow Creek Traction » Sun Jan 02, 2011 3:53 am

I used to do gaming minis and it may have something to do with different texture of rail metal compared to minis pewter (GOD I HATE THAT STUFF) and/or lead.
They seem to be substantially 'toothier' than rail metal.

And now for unsolicited editorial, I'd lay off the detergent before painting rail.
later, Forrest Today's scientists have substituted mathematics for experiments, and they wander off through equation after equation, and eventually build a structure which has no relation to reality. -- Nikola Tesla, July, 1934

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Postby Willow Creek Traction » Sun Jan 02, 2011 3:58 am

Colin Peake wrote:The rail may need degreasing with white spirit rather than detergent

Wiping rail with paper towel wetted with Isopropyl alcohol or lacquer thinner have also worked for me.
later, Forrest Today's scientists have substituted mathematics for experiments, and they wander off through equation after equation, and eventually build a structure which has no relation to reality. -- Nikola Tesla, July, 1934

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Postby david colley jnr » Sun Jan 02, 2011 4:57 pm

Thanks for all the advice. I think ill have a go with the Cif (still cant get used to that daft name for Jif! ) then try painting the rails with a slightly thinned paint. At the worst, I can give it another coat.

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So picked this set up in "Hobbycraft". Seemed to have most of the stuff I needed, albeit in small quantities...

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Formed the land in the time old method of newspaper (actually the festive TV guide) and plaster bandage (from above set). This was then coated in dental plaster (also from above set) and left to dry. This was done whilst our little one was in bed and SWMBO was crashed on the sofa. Still not well...

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Just to see what the sleepers looked like... A little too light for my liking, but as I said before, a little weathering will go a long way.
These are balsa, scrubbed up with a nail brush, you know the old fashioned wooden ones, with the big side, then the little, coarser side? Well, the little side was rubbed up and down the length before it was cut up and just raised the grain a little and created some really nice grooves, not too deep and not too heavy. Hopefully, with a black wash, it will represent splitting wood and heavy grain.

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Daft lad woke up for tea, but still not hungry. He spied the diorama drying on the radiator, so I got him applying the Woodlands Scenic's "Earth Base" to the bare plaster. Looks more the part now...

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Postby Adrian » Mon Jan 03, 2011 3:19 am

G'day David,

Came across this site and it looks as if your short container has a prototype.

http://www.containercontainer.com/product.aspx?key=36

By the way the rest of the diorama is looking good.....glad to see that you have roped in the locals to help as well.

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Postby david colley jnr » Wed Jan 05, 2011 7:19 am

Adrian, cool, although mine is no longer a ten footer, it's a forty foot container, you just can't see the rest of it :lol:

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Started laying down the grass after painting the verges brown.

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Did a test shrub and tried out a couple of longer clumps of grass. I wanted to try and create a more textured effect which the scatter simply won't achieve. Any ideas? I know Colin Peake uses hanging basket liners to great effect. Any SBS knocking around?

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Postby underworld » Wed Jan 05, 2011 8:49 pm

Looks cool David! 8) Did you build the container?


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Postby david colley jnr » Wed Jan 05, 2011 10:22 pm

Thanks! I did build the container, but from a resin kit! :) it's from mac models and believe it's intended for ships. It's modular, so you can add two kits to make a standard 20' container, or even a 40' version. The castings needed a fair bit of fettling, and I managed to get the roof back to front, but it serves well as an engine shed!

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Postby david colley jnr » Thu Jan 06, 2011 7:55 pm

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Got this stuff in the diorama kit. Described as foliage material, it looked a little like the infamous hanging basket liner...

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Did a wee test on a piece of scrap foam core... after a bit of a trim, it seemed to do the trick, so unable to find any other info, I forged ahead with grassing up the knoll. I've included a step by step so you can all laugh at my mistakes and hopefully learn by them as i'm sure I won't :lol: :roll: :oops:


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So here are my weapons (tools) of choice. Good old PVA and a pair of scissors. Actually the kitchen ones. Hope SWMBO won't mind! :lol:

Image
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Cutting it into small slivers seemed like a better idea than glueing it on and tearing it off as i had already applied scatter and didn't want to pull all that off.

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Lashings of creamy PVA. The scatter soaked it up, so really needed to daub it on.

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Push it home, making sure the base of the fibres are stuck into it, but so the PVA doesn't draw along the fibres.

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Taa-Daa! rough grass. Hoping that the scatter will show through the long grass to give it some background and I hope that the joints in the strips won't show through. It needs a damned good hair cut, and where it ends, i'm planning on simply feathering it down to nothing to replicate the worn away grass. Thinking out loud, even if the joints do show, I may be able to sculpt them away.

Now, I've created this box frame to go around it, but it's left it in complete darkness. Never thought about illumination. Just looked up from the PC and spied a set of grain of wheat fairy lights I picked up from ikea, complete with a battery box for a quid some time ago. do you think they would work? And if so, should i cluster them in one spot, or spread them over the model?

Cheers for listening to my ramblings, next time should see it with a hair cut and maybe some ballast!

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Postby SOUTHPASS » Thu Jan 06, 2011 9:50 pm

Good morning David....Can that material be pulled apart instead of cutting? Might give you a more irregular patches of grass.
.....WARNING....
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Postby dretsome » Thu Jan 06, 2011 10:24 pm

Hi David,

Just to give you some insight in my way of 'laying grass' and how to build up.

Image



Picture #1 and #2:
Apply some basic ground, in my case i use a fine brown ballast, then with the use of a Noch grasmaster or ready-made grass clumps apply clumps of grass, not entirely cover the surface. When it is dry, remove the grass fibers (grasmaster) which are not glued - just hold your layout upside-down. You will see the surface between your grass clumps.

Final touch, with a very cheap hairspray fix the upper grass clumps and with the use of a tea streaner i apply some fine colors (white, orange/yellow) to highlight some flowers.

Picture #3 and #4
I use some plastic plants from the local market garden for fish tanks/decoration, as long as they are small/at scale. Saves me some money ;-)

Some tips:
- Ground rule, always try to do the grass before the ballast.
- want to create some depth in your vegetation -> apply first some dark fibers/foliage and on top some final light colors

May be of some help here...good luck!

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Postby Adrian » Fri Jan 07, 2011 12:33 am

G'day David,
Like the way the grass is coming on. Better than any that I have ever done.

Now, I've created this box frame to go around it, but it's left it in complete darkness. Never thought about illumination. Just looked up from the PC and spied a set of grain of wheat fairy lights I picked up from ikea, complete with a battery box for a quid some time ago. do you think they would work? And if so, should i cluster them in one spot, or spread them over the model?


Don't know if the lights will work for you.....there are just too many variables.
What is the ambient light like ?
Just how bright are the fairy lights ?
What time of day do you want to represent ?
Is this for home or exhibition use ?

I would suggest, using masking tape or similar, fixing the lights in place on the inside of your box and trying them.
If not happy just move them around until they do produce the effect that you want.
If you can't get the required effect then start looking for alternatives.
These include LEDs, cold cathode tubes and halogen type lamps.

Especially for exhibition work I would suggest using too much light rather than too little.
Think about a stage show. Audience in the dark.....stage illuminated with Megawatts :!:
All the attention is centred on the bit that is interesting.....the stage. You should look at doing the same sort of thing.

No matter what you decide on I would suggest that you replace the battery box with a mains powered supply of some type.....otherwise the cost could be horrendous :!:

Hope that this was of some use.
Cheers
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Postby david colley jnr » Sun Jan 09, 2011 8:44 am

Erik, I've been admiring your layout with great envy right from the beginning!
The grassmaster system does seem a fantastic product, but I can't justify£130 for the applicator for an A4 area.
I took the liberty of showing your pictures to a non modelling friend of mine. He said "it looks nice there..." ! When I explained it was a model, his response was of pure disbelief. I then had to find your thread and let him read through your build and even then he couldn't believe his eyes! Well done in creating such a superb layout!

Adrian, thanks for the heads up on the lighting. Since my last post, i have put them somewhere "safe" and now can't find the little buggers. To be honest, I don't think they would have been bright enough, but I'd like to use something to replicate a nice warm morning sun. Was thinking of illuminating from the rear corner, behind the shed to draw your eye into the back...
is this for home or exhibition use ?
Ha! It is strictly for home use. The thought of insulting proper model railways by mixing my feeble efforts makes me smile! :D Could just imagine sitting beside a 20' long mainline terminus station with my knocked together box.... :lol:
So bearing this in mind, any suggestions for a low profile, low voltage cool lighting source? would like it to be battery powered as it will be destined to sit on a shelf.

Image
Got the first layer of ballast down. I've used limestone chippings that i sometimes use at work.

Image
When weathered they should look like recycled granite ballast.

Image
Fixed the sleepers in place.

Image
This chap isn't too convinced by the little shrub I put in. Think he's trying to dig it up...

I've just given the sleepers a dark wash to tone them down and also given them a bit more texture on the ends. Next job is to lay the rail and build the pointwork. I will be blatantly copying Erik's idea of the cut down staples and then the ballast will be bought up to the correct height.

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Postby david colley jnr » Sun Jan 09, 2011 7:57 pm

Image
Got round to cobbling together the first toe and sticking in the stock rail for the main line...

Image
A closer view...

Image
Put another layer of ballast down. Needs sticking in, but I really needed to see it in the flesh. The size looks to be a little on the large size, but hey, you use what you're given! :lol:

Image
The reason behind this little folly. Colin Peake's lovely little diesel. It's been sat on it's cd display for ages now, so I thought I'd best give it a new home!

Image
Finally, the trackplan. Actually, the reason I've posted this is that something just isn't right. I've been staring at it for ages now and can't quite see it. Any ideas?

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