Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Get It Right Next Time

It was very heartening to receive so many hints and tips on how to make the hipped conservatory roof after my post about being baffled by working out the shape of the end triangles without an exhausting process of trial and error.

All the solutions were obvious as soon as you thought about them for a moment, but I can be rather dense about these things.

In the end, though, I retreated to my comfort zone and made a template in plain styrene which I used to make sure the triangles were fabricated to precisely the right shape.

The first attempt ended up being far too tall, and as is often the way, making the second one was much faster because you've worked out the best way of doing it, and I got this assembled in a single evening session.

There's just some gutting to add, along with the window ledges and I think the house will be ready to hand over to Himself for painting.

And that, for me anyway, will be the Oberon Woods estate done.


Sunday, 15 October 2017

Vintage Distractions

Himself and I had a fabulous time at the FR's Victorian Weekend but seeing all the toys out of their boxes does become a dangerous distraction.

There was modelling inspiration wherever you looked.

I have enough trouble trying to keep up with the output of the carriage works without getting waylaid by all the new treasures in the Waggon Tracks shed like this bolster set.

I can see myself having to scratch build something like that very soon.

Also irresistible is this recently restored tank wagon which was acquired from Llechwedd.

The elliptical tank could be a real challenge to get right, as could replicating the pitted surface.

The weekend was also bitter sweet in that we saw the unique Hearse Van in service for the first time this century to carry the ashes of FR volunteer John Powell, in whose company we had both spent many hours, to his final resting place at Tan y Bwlch.

We do already have a model of the hearse which I scratch built at least 20 years ago, but in my naivety back then I made it with external axle boxes like 99% of other waggons.

Silly boy!

I think I will need to dig it out and see whether it would be possible to convert or whether I should just build a replacement.

Friday, 13 October 2017

Too Tall

There's good and bad news to report.

The good news is that I've proved that I can fabricate a four-sided, sloping conservatory roof.

(And damned tricky it was at times, too)

The bad news is that it has turned out to be far too tall, or steeply pitched if you prefer.

My calculations had failed to account for the overhang and the fact that the main side pieces ended up being a little bigger than I had presumed when I drew it out.

The net result is that like the Indian continent crashing into Asia and forcing the Himalayas ever upwards the ridge line of this conservatory was forced higher than it should be.

The sides should have a much less steep profile.

It's not really realistic to try to reverse engineer what I've got here so the most logical thing to do is to start again and make the pieces smaller this time.

It was only two evenings work wasted anyway.

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

So What Now?

I may have hit my trigonometrical limit.

I've fabricated the two main pieces of the conservatory roof but now I'm left puzzling the size and shape that I will need to make the end triangles.

The problem is that in my initial calculations I didn't account for the overlap at the front and sides - where the gutter is - and so I don't feel confident that I know precisely what the height of the roof will be, and even the smallest margin of error will may leave some ugly gaps if I try to make the end pieces based only on my calculations.

Therefore I think I shall resort to doing what I usually do, which is take the time consuming, labour intensive option.

I shall attempt the glue these two pieces into a V shape and then form a template for the end pieces before fabricating the real ones and gluing them into place.

I only hope none of my former maths teachers are reading this - oh the shame!

(By the way, if you think the two pieces in the photo look wonky and not symmetrical it's just the angle the snap was take from.)

Monday, 9 October 2017

Maths Lessons

I suspect there's not a school pupil in the land who has never sat in a maths lessons and sworn that they would never ever find a use in their adult life for algebra, trigonometry or any of the other baffling formulae you get made to learn.

That is until you come to build a conservatory with a pitched glazed roof on a model railway.

I have written on this blog before about how I have always been absolutely useless when it comes to working on angles on a model.

I usually proceed by trial and error, which can be a lengthy and frustrating way to proceed at the best of times, but when it comes to these delicate styrene fabrications I would really like to cut down on the faffing about as much as possible.

So the question I was pondering was how to make sure I make them right first time.

The answer I realised one morning as I was taking a shower (apologies if that's too much information) was good old Pythagoras's theorem.

In order to work out the size of the two main pieces, so they met neatly in the middle, all I needed to do was imagine the cross section of the roof as a right angle triangle and the piece I'm trying to make would be the hypotenuse.


Well, that's the theory at least.

Let's see what happens when I try to do it.

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Offering Up

There's a little more progress with the bungalow conservatory to report this time.

I've fixed a floor in place and added the 'foundation' to bring it up to the correct height to match the rest of the house.

Just like with the previous conservatory I had to build I'm going to keep this as a separate structure until the point that it is painted and glazed before being fixed onto the side of the house.

Being at the front of the layout, and the closest of the properties to the viewing public, I reckon I may need to make a little bit of furniture to go inside it otherwise it may look suspiciously empty.

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Back To Work

For reasons that would be too boring to explain it's been nearly a week since I last sat down at the modelling desk to do any work on the bungalow.

I didn't have long but I managed to knock up the other two window frames for the conservatory and attach them to the base wall and get the three bits glued together.

This bit is simple enough so far but the challenge will come with forming the glazed pitched roof, but I'll put that off for a little while longer I think.