Sunday, May 19, 2013

The Almshouses....just about done.

After adding chimney pots, ridge tiles, barge boards, gutters, downspouts and finials I'm going to leave the Almshouses alone.  At some point I want to add a couple of hanging baskets but I'm done for now.

My artistic adviser, Mrs Chas, advised that the roof really needed terracotta ridge tiles to finish it off.  She was absolutely right.  She always is. I wondered how to make them but could think of nothing other than bits of styrene strip glued on to the paper tiles with Mek-Pak and topped with styrene rod.  Perhaps there is an easier or better method.  Something more ornamental would be beyond my ability to make but I suppose the serrated edge of a greetings card might work.

I bought this gadget some time ago for cutting lots of small lengths of styrene strip.  It's wonderful.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Holiday time!

The ever observant Mrs Chas pointed me in the direction of a very interesting old building due shortly for demolition so while on holiday this week I made a start on a rough copy.  Here's the original....

And here's the copy.  Yes, I know, it's hard to tell them apart.

A few days ago, I stumbled across another lovely old building which again someone will want to pull down in short order.  I went into the shop to the front of the building to ask if I could take a few snaps.  The shop was empty.  It always is.  I know the shop. People are scared of the aged proprietor.

Me: Sorry to trouble you, but I am a keen railway modeller and would love to make a model of the old building at the back.  Would you mind if I took some photos please?

Aged P: (Fixes with stare and chews silently) You might be one of those people who wants to look around.

Me: (I wonder how to answer - it's true - I am one of those people) Not to worry, I thought I would ask. It's such a lovely building.

Aged P: (More staring and chewing) Alright then, but only one or two.

So here is one of them...

I am very grateful to him for giving permission.  One day soon this building will pass out of memory and it's replacement will almost certainly be unmemorable.

On the theme of modelable buildings and scenic ideas, I came across these in and around Pwllheli.  On the coastal path, an old farmhouse and outbuildings...

The ground frame at Porthmadog....

I couldn't resist this hut at Pwllheli Station. It's a very poor imitation of Lee's far more characterful version which is here.

And finally, this from Aberdaron.  The buildings are not so interesting but I like the way the road goes up and to the left and, where it curves, there is the church and blue sky.  Having a road blend into the back scene is something I find hard but I thought this real life example very helpful.

Well, the holiday is at an end but I post this photo, from the National Slate Museum, as a handy reference source on slate sizes.  (For an excellent and handier reference on how to make a model slate roof, see Iain Robinson's comment on his blog post here).

Thursday, May 9, 2013

The Almshouses .....

What with one thing another, including the local quarry running out of slates, and sitting in the brief sunshine,  progress has been sloooow.  But at least work on the roof has started.

I was surprised to see that after a bit of painting, the flaws in the patterned brickwork appeared marginally less noticeable although not to the extent that it will bear close inspection.  Still it's an improvement.

The stonework in the gables presented a bit of a puzzle.  I thought about using Das but I really didn't fancy my chances of producing something which didn't look just clumsy.  (For a master class in using Das see Iain Robinson's blog, here for example).  After a bit of experimenting I settled on drilling holes in styrene sheet, filling them with Squadron putty and making a few indentations while still drying. 

Still plenty to do - finish off the slates, add flashings, ridge tiles, gutters and downpipes, chimney pots, barge boards, final painting.  And hanging baskets.  Now that'll be interesting.  It's not going to be finished anytime soon.

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