Monday, November 26, 2012

Shingle Shed and Shifty Shack 14

It's been a while since I worked on the Shingle Shed, but I made some progress.  I took a break from freight cars and cleaned the workshop.  In the process, I found some doll house molding that I misplaced.  I had bought it with the intention of using it for the eaves of the shed.  Finding this lost treasure was all it took to get me back into the building.

I gradually finished out the corner boards and eaves. The roof is a double layer of chip board, and the tar paper is used tea bags colored with acrylics.  There is still some detailing to do, but the thermal enclosure is done.  Looking back at this earlier paper model makes me realize how much more efficient I have become.  There are several spots in the shingle shed that are over engineered.  I am going to have to look back at the Virgin Church, and see if I can't speed that along in light of my realization.

Too bad that the module that this will go on does not even have a baseboard.  Thinking that I am over complicating those too, and need to get my head out of my behind and accelerate that process with a simpler construction technique.  Plenty time to think about that while I dawdle weathering and finishing the shed. . .  .

Just as a side note, I did use that Tite Bond 3 to glue things together. .  . it only looks like I drink it.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Paper Boxcars 03

I'm in love with paper.  Considering the success I've had with structures like the shifty shed, it is baffling that I did not turn to it for rolling stock sooner.  A gap in the imagination that has been resoundingly filled.

The results so far include 4 box car bodies, the two Klyzlr boxes, and a couple testing the Photoshop template.  The car is based on a boxcar from Slim Gauge Cars.  I like the chunky proportion, and working so closely to plan makes me realize that the salt wagons are in fact a bit narrow.

In drawing the cars I created two extra layers, one was a registration line, the other was a text guide.  Those lines and guides are in each file.  By taping a piece of cheap chip board to the stage and cutting the registration line I was able to create a fixed template.  The printed board was slipped under the template, and lined up.  This ensured registration.

Each box consists of two cut sheets, a detail sheet and a body sheet.
Rather than print on white card I printed the bodies on acid free paper and mounted them to black card.  This saved me from having to marker edges of the board later.

I added color to the bodies using acrylic washes, and straight acrylics.  The grab irons are staples left over from my broken staple pliers--might as well use them.  Bottom door guides are wires. The shot above shows the end prior to having the transom attached.

Today's task, if I can make the time, is to get the uncoupler guts configured.  I also have some work to do on some other designs.  I am going to spend some time considering a way to do a two sided registration such that I could make a paper gondola.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Paper Boxcars 02

The paper boxes are progressing, even if only on Photoshop.  Spent much of the week re-working the art and the cad file.  After locating the grab irons and details on the cad model, I went ahead and created a template for Photoshop.  This will let me get artwork going for any number of cars in short order.  Becoming serious about the details of the car also forced me to rework the Prof's car.  That's fine, because I made an error in the name, including an initial that did not belong.  Prof was fast on the correction, and I could not let the error stand.  The final artwork read's "Prof. Klyzlr's Pummel Proof Encyclopedia Sacks."  I'm pleased to report that car 519 is also progressing.  I plant to take the rest of Turkey day to finish the guts of the car, and hope to start cutting them tomorrow.  519 includes graphics, and I have some serious art planned for the tomato car.  Hoping that the proof of concept works with the text based bodies.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Timber Terminator

No, I have not started buying cases of smokes. . . . this is less a lighter than a device to grain the end of scale timbers.  I finally got tired of running back and forth to the car.  Although the lighter assembly is cheap, a 15 amp power supply is required to get the little bugger hot.  Fortunately, I had one of those--I just added some spade connectors to the lighter so I could quickly disconnect it from the power supply, allowing it to be used for other projects.  The stand is made from acrylic.  I was nervous about the heat at first, but, I have yet to melt or warp the acrylic.  Let's face it, the duty cycle is not too severe.

The best results come as the lighter coil cools to a sweet spot, allowing you to do several timbers.  A nice touch for those exposed bits of end grain.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Paper Boxcars 01

As I finish the Salt Wagons I have started to design a set of boxcars.  The plan so far is to print the artwork on card stock and then laser engrave texture into them, making something like an old kit with embossed paper car sides.  The first wagon is an homage to the Prof. . .  .if you have yet to be pummeled, just tune in to Model Rail Radio, and it will all make sense.

This is the current draft of the car printing, not yet in color.  I have been laying the artwork out in cad, and then moving into Photoshop to make sure that the registration marks line up.  I have a "tomato" car in mind, and I am excited to do some more elaborate art work.  For the time being I am doing proof of concept with text.
The earlier draft did not have a car number, and I thought the slogan was to prominent.  The car number is essential, since that will be the digital address of the uncoupling system.   I also wanted the humor to be a 'tad' more subtle.  I have been toying with the color, and I am pretty excited by being able to produce a faded boxcar red right out of the starting blocks.
The layouts for the printing and engraving are progressing.  The superstructure will be built in layers for surface relief beyond the engraving.  I still have to lay out the grab iron and bolt locations.  I am measuring staples--seeing as I hate bending grab irons, and fine staples might just do the trick. 

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Salt Wagons 01

The salt wagons are slowly taking shape.  It's been a while since I have posted for the simple reason that posting repetitive tasks gets really dull for readers. . . "look, more flash removed from detail parts" is just not exciting.  Most of them are still in the tray, waiting to be put together.  Never mind that a wheel is off the track in the photo above--it was the only way I could keep it from rolling off one end or another.

I made several wood trays to hold projects--actually, I had originally built them to hold color sample sets for my architectural clients, but they are more frequently used to hold models in progress.  This way, everything can be sorted.  Filling the tray tables took a bit of effort with 8 cars in progress.  Staining, preliminary "salting" (with some white paint diluted in alcohol), and rusting (paint in alcohol, not really mixed).

The trucks and under bodies are airbrushed--the rest is poorly mixed paint and stain.  So far cars 312 and 314 are about 90% complete.  I have a little more detailing to do on them, and some final painting, but I need to get the other six up to standard first.

Making these cars has been an interesting adjustment.  Size wise, a 24' car in ON30 is the length of a standard gauge freight car in HO (at least one in US outline).  I found myself looking at slim gauge cars repeatedly in order to get some sense of proportion.  Getting them on the rails, I am glad that I changed my coupler height to ON3 standard, lifting the car body somewhat.  Doing so really helped with the chunky proportion--something I like.