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Scale Modeling Tips & Tools Monthly, Issue #012-- "Pastor's Inlet"
January 15, 2008
Pastor's Inlet Mixes My Hobby & LifeThe Pastor’s Inlet Portage and Navigation Company will be an N Scale kitbash of Dave Frary’s Thatcher’s Inlet originally published back in 1972.
I turned 69 this month and am much more interested in following the life my Pastor leads. This is not so much a tribute to Him as it is a reminder to myself not to get too wrapped up in things that don’t matter.
Frary’s 30-year-old plan was originally conceived as an H0n30 narrow gauge operation so the fit should be pretty good.
I like Frary’s use of a lot of buildings in a small space and this opens the door to using some of my newly developed paper structures as both background and foreground structures.
I am convinced this is the way to go as they provide the type of detail I am looking to achieve, they cost very little in comparison to the scratch built craftsman kits and have a smaller impact on the environment. For example, here’s a shot of Karl’s Worm Shack that will occupy a small wharf at the front of the layout. It has a 3” by 1.5” footprint and cost me about 3 cents worth of ink, a sheet of paper and a couple hours of “paperwork”.
Considering I have about 30 more structures ahead of me, this is the only way to go.Afterall, I just turned 69 and I don’t know how many years it would take to stick build these buildings.
Produce Your Own Award Winning DioramaIf you put all your effort into perfecting a smile for the judges, you probably won't see too many blue ribbons on your diorama at local modeling contests.
But a properly executed plan can do wonders when it comes to producing an award winner.
Here's a Blueprint for your success:
1. Pick your locale with care. Make it an area you enjoy, know something about or are willing to research. Suit your own tastes in scenery and military or civilian operations.
Once More Into The BreachThis month I am beginning a scale modeling ebook about card stock building construction. This will be based on my experiences in scratch building background building flats. It has naturally carried over into an economical alternative to the typical craftsman kit.
There are many things I learned in developing this process that make me realize this is a technique long overlooked by the scratch building community.
These are just a few of the topics I intend to cover in providing a modus operandi for railroad modelers and dioramists (I know, it isn’t a word) who scratch build structures or portions of structures on a regular basis.
As we roll into an uncertain economy, many of us are looking for ways we can cut costs without sacrificing the excellence of our work.
This new Adobe Acrobat book will join my “Model Masters Tips Log” (there is a link on the
Incidentally, I stumbled onto a rare glimpse into railroad modeling humor coming from the Brits, it is
“Organic Grass, the Cat Owners’ Revenge”
This is only five photos, but I guarantee it will make your day more enjoyable.
Filling The Modeling PrescriptionI am impressed with the number of times I find a medical solution to modeling headaches and manage to get double value out of health maintenance equipment.
I have never liked the way the blade on my hobby knife comes loose in the middle of cutting operations like using extra pressure to cut through styrene or thick wood.
Enter the disposable scalpels, either #11 or #20 blades molded into a plastic handle. At $1.50 apiece they are more expensive than hobby knife blades but the scalpel blades are sharper, made from tempered stainless steel and come individually wrapped. When they start to get dull, just throw them away and grab another. There is no trying to slip a blade into a slot holding the cutting edge.
Don’t throw away another pill bottle. Those orange translucent screw-top jugs have multiple uses on your hobby bench. I like them for handling liquid weathering mixes like vinegar and steel wool, or commercial weathering liquid.
They are also handy for storing small detail parts that otherwise rush to the corners of junk drawers. Need a place for screws, nuts and nails? Paint them silver, slap on a Texaco decal and you have an oil tank for your layout.
While we are talking about pill containers. See if you can snag one of those seven-pocket, pill boxes like the one I used to organize a week’s worth of pills. I use it now to contain multiple colors of weathering chalk.
When you get to the point of sculpting mountains for a layout or diorama, plaster is normally the “go to” solution.
Why not go a step further and get your hands on plaster bandages used for making leg and arm casts.
Depending on the size of your landscape, you will need 2 or more fast setting (5-8 minutes) plaster bandages you can find at a large pharmacy.
Finish Your Flight SafelyThe controls on the radio are much like the controls in a full-sized helicopter, and as such, they are fairly complex.
Loose screws mean parts that fly off when you try to fly! Be wary of loose items like blades. Look for loose screws and nuts or broken pieces.
After each flight, no matter how brief, Look over your copter to make sure there is no physical damage such as broken parts, cracks in the body, or tires that may have come unglued that you may need to repair.
Inspect your radio's operation, make sure all the servos are functioning properly, do a radio check, make sure your frequency is clear, make sure all of your linkages are in place, and check your battery voltage.
Until Next Month...
Make It Your Best Effort!
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