Friday, 10 January 2014

Reassuringly Inexpensive

There are times when you have to make sacrifices for the sake of your art as a scratch builder and this one was particularly taxing.

You see, putting a roof on the Super Barn carriages has necessitated the consumption of a pint of beer.

It's a tough life!

The beer was selected not on the criterion of taste but on the fact it was available in an extra large can, which, as you can see, is almost exactly the same length as a Super Barn carriage.

It's a new departure for me and idea I got from reading entries on a Narrow Gauge modelling forum

Himself is very sniffy about this, on two counts.

Firstly because he doesn't approve of the beer - neither does the Artistic Director for that matter - but also because he thinks slicing up an aluminum tin is a rather second-rate way of modelling a carriage roof.

Normally I make my roofs out of styrene, but the problem with the Super Barns is they have a section of unsupported roof at each end above the inset doors which is very had to replicate in styrene unless you've gone to the bother of heat treating it.

On our model of 121 Himself made a brass roof skin. It worked very well but I wasn't too keen on doing it that way this time because I don't get on with bending brass and I doubt my clients would be happy to wait the time it would take to get him to do it for me!

So I thought I'd try the tin can approach.

Having drained the contents of the can - an essential first step which I want you to know gave me no pleasure at all - I set about hacking it into roof-size strips.

I sliced the ends off with a cutting disc in the mini-drill before attacking the tube which was left with ordinary scissors.

I was worried about whether it would crinkle and curl during this operation but to my delight it didn't, and it kept its curve.

Here you see it resting on top of the carriage.

I have still used my normal roof support structure with a flat section keeping carriage sides in place and a longitudinal rib which means the thin tin has plenty of support.

Glued into position and given a coat of primer this is the finished effect.

I think I'm reasonably happy with that. Cheers!

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