Windows and Walls

Constant slow and steady progress.  That’s something you really need to get used to as a model railroader I find.  It’s one of the reasons I try very hard not to set deadlines on building a model, or finishing a project (though sometimes deadlines are inevitable).  When I decided to start the model of 587 Yonge Street in late 2016, I had kind of set the annual Cask Days Beer festival run by the owners of Bar Volo that was located there as a target, meaning late October.  While I’ve made a lot of progress, its abundantly clear that having the model done by October 2017 isn’t realistic, but the nice thing about an annual event, is that it will be along again in October 2018.

So back to the model making and the model itself.  There is a lot of hurry up and wait in model making.  Waiting for glue or paint drying (two things I am self acknowledged as being terrible at, I have a bad habit of getting my fingerprints in paint while being impatient!!), waiting on parts arriving, staring a model and deciding how you are going to do the next step in a project, all can make for slow progress.  On my model of 587 Yonge Street, I posted a week or so ago about the slow and steady process of cutting out windows.  In the week plus since, I have finished cutting out the windows and doors, and the three main walls of the building (the fourth wall is a party-wall to an adjacent building and will be modeled as such).  Slow and steady wins the race, or in this case, means I got the cutouts done well enough that any little errors can be hidden through the painting and detailing process (the lower half of the building being covered in ivy is a good way to hide some ugly bits).

Just over a weeks progress, from July 29th to August 7th.  Finished inserting windows and doors, and starting to add details before assembly and painting, or is it painting and assembly?

Strangely enough, this is the first building that I have entirely built from scratch.  I have built lots of kits with heavy modifications, or bashing kits or bits of kits into a building, but I have never started from ground zero with bare styrene and plans.  In this process, I have learned a couple of things, in trying to merge 3D printed parts and styrene, I have been far too cute with my tolerances.  Everything fits, but it has to be so perfect, that any little error or issue is overly accentuated.  I haven’t created a monster I can’t finish, but I’ve created parts that are not ready for prime time to even consider selling to anyone else through Shapeways.  I have learned that the next time I try to design windows, I need to make them a bit over-scale to ease the process of inserting them into the walls.  I also need to work on a better process to create cutting templates for the walls to insert the windows into than my paper template and cutting out/tracing openings.  It works, but my level of precision hasn’t been great, and has created a few issues here and there with getting the windows to actually glue into the openings.

IMGP1469RawConvMy technique for the windows.  I trace the main rectangle from behind, then using the two paper outlines, trace out the rough shape of the final opening, then sand/file gently to fit around the 3D printed frames.

Despite these hurdles, over the Civic Holiday long weekend here in Ontario (the first Monday in August is a civic holiday in Ontario, not everyone gets it, but most office/factory type workers do, though many stores are open for the shoppers).  With a three-day weekend to putter with no pressure on the model, once the windows were done, I was able to glue the interior and exterior wall layers together, and start working on additional brick detail, along with looking at what work was needed to the 3D printed ground floor entry and windows to attach the upper walls.  With a few styrene additions to the ground floor windows the next task was to start looking at where I needed to drill holes for installing the lighting I want to add.

IMGP1641RawConvWalls temporarily stood up to start looking at next steps like wiring for lights and the first floor interior.  You can see the 3D printed chimney in the upper right of the picture.

I am at a point where I am going back and forth on what my next steps should be.  I am 99% certain that before I move forward with any more assembly, at a minimum I need to prime the 3D printed lower level.  This will let me then mask the brick areas, and spray the windows/wood parts black.  I am going to be painting the brick on the building with Pan Pastels, where I am going back and forth is whether I am going to be better off assembling the three parts of the fabricated walls before I paint the brick, or if it will be better to paint them assembled to ease blending and colour matching between the three parts.  I am re-ordering the brick finial crowns over the upper windows.  I need them to stand out a bit more, but as I am holding off on placing a Shapeways order until I get my next sales payment mid-August, it will be early September at the soonest before I receive the order and can have the walls in a ready to paint state, so I’ve got plenty of time for some good old paralysis by analysis on how to proceed before I go and make any foolish decisions!!

IMGP1642RawConvAnother view of the work completed to date.

The next few steps are mostly preparatory, and because I am re-ordering the brick finials above the top windows to make them stand out more, I am nearing a downing of tools on the exterior.  This doesn’t mean a stop on the project, as I haven’t given any serious thought to how I am going to construct the ground floor interior.  Not being able to work on the exterior for a few weeks will force me to think about the interior.

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