Tuesday, August 25, 2009

How I assembled the station buildings

The station buildings on the Peckforton Railway are all based on kits from TM Models to maintain consistency at each station. The kits comprise key components cast in resin which need to be glued together. This posting outlines the construction of the station building at Beeston Market but the same methods were used to construct all the buildings with slight variations to suit the needs of each building. (See Progress Report 25 and scroll down the page for more info on the station buildings)

On opening the kit, the walls, roof and fittings were laid out for checking. The doors are moulded into this kit, with others, the doors are separate mouldings which need to be attached.

The first job is to tidy up the mouldings. Inevitably with the moulding process, some of the surfaces need a little filing down to help ensure a snug fit. As you can see, I tend to use my knees as a vice to avoid damaging the mouldings, and run a large flat file over the edges to be joined.

The walls were joined first. I prefer to join all four walls at the same time on a cutting mat with squared markings. This enables me to make adjustments while the glue is setting to ensure everything is level and square. I use 4 minute rapid-set epoxy as this gives me some fiddling time.

To hold the building together while the glue was setting, I used string or twine looped loosely around the model and then tightened by twisting lollypop (popsicle) sticks into the loop. A small loop of twine stopped the lolly sticks from unravelling.

While the glue was hardening, I tidied up the other mouldings such as the window frames, using fine needle files:

Once the glue holding the walls was set sufficiently, I tidied up any inconsistencies with a file and then glued on the corner pieces. These were held in place with the twine loops used previously.

The next job was to fix one half of the roof in place. The upturned building was placed on to the roof and left for the epoxy to set. From experience, I've learned it is important to make sure the roof is carefully positioned along the ridge - otherwise the other half of the roof will not fit properly.

Next, the other half of the roof was fixed into place.

With some buildings, I fixed the other half of the roof in the same way as the first half, but for some reason this roof section needed to be twisted slightly to fit into place. Maybe the first half wasn't as squarely fitted as I thought. I therefore needed to use my tightened twine method - in fact the twine wasn't strong enough and so a sturdy piece of red tape was deployed instead.

Next, the barge boards were trimmed and glued to the eaves. Packing pieces made from lolly sticks which supported them while the glue set.

Next, the finials were filed down and added:

and the self-adhesive strip was added to the ridge and scribed to represent ridge tiles.

Rather than gluing the chimney stack directly to the roof as intended, I decided to position it on the ridge. After marking out the position a hole was cut using a razor saw and craft knife.

The chimney stack was then glued into position and held in place with an elastic band while the glue set.

Finally, before painting, the window frames were fitted. On some models I have painted the doors and frames before fitting but as the doors on this model were moulded into the walls I decided to fit the window frames and then paint them at the same time as the doors.

I could have left the walls their natural colour but decided to paint them with watered down magnolia exterior wall paint to which had been added a little yellow acrylic. The doors, window frames and corner pieces were picked out in Brunswick Green enamel.

The roof was firstly given a thinned wash of dark grey acrylic, which was then wiped off with a paper towel, leaving the paint in the crevices. Individual slates were then picked out in varying shades of grey.
The frame of the noticeboard was picked out in green enamel while the board itself was painted with black acrylic to which some talcum powder had been added for a matt finish.

The chimney stack was dry-brushed with brick-coloured acrylic with some individual bricks picked out in slightly different shades. The chimney pot was painted orangey red.

I then added posters and representations of enamel signs which I had printed out (see How I created signs and posters). The whole lot was given a couple of coats of varnish from an aerosol to protect the paint and posters from the elements and finally the glass was glued into the window frames:

When time and finances permit, I will add more station clutter and figures to the model and its surroundings. (eg see How I made some milk churns). I decided not to weather the models as probably, within a couple of years of being placed out in the garden, they will weather naturally.

I intend to store the buildings inside when not in use, but it is highly likely that during the summer months they will remain outside for most of the time. Time will tell how the posters fare but hopefully the coats of varnish will protect them for a while though I know from experience that slugs and snails seem to love eating paper and card!


zugspitzbahn said...

Looks really good! Thanks for the link from gscalemad.

GE Rik said...

Thanks for that.

I'm never sure whether others find what I'm doing useful, but I know I find it really interesting to see what other garden railway modellers are doing. Sometimes, I find just looking at pictures of their railways and gardens gives me ideas for ways of improving my own. Hopefully, there will be something somewhere on my blog that someone will think is interesting or useful.

I look back over my postings from time to time. They are a bit like a diary. Looking at some of my early postings, I realise how much I have managed to achieve. But there's still a heck of a lot more to do..............

At least it keeps me off the streets!