Monday, 27 February 2012

A test picture

Test picture to see, how the landscape and detail is progressing...

Copyright 2012 - Ed Smith

The O2 (M7 in our case, as there is no rtr in n gauge) leaves Cliddesden Station heading to Alton
[Sepia toned in post]

Sunday, 26 February 2012

A Little Splash of Colour

Base paint efor the landscape 

The sidings and end loops painted gloss black

Saturday, 18 February 2012

Cliddesden Water Tower

2cm square and 3.5cm tall. These smaller buildings can be created reasonably quickly. About three evenings work from artwork design to completed build.

This corner view in black and white is all that is shown in 'the book'. Therefore, the colour scheme is guess work with the tank colour being deduced from the very light grey shade in 'the book' and the text, which described the tank as reconditioned second hand. So, a fresh coat of LSWR cream seemed appropriate. The vertical brown line is the water gauge and the lighter lines panel rivets. Inside the tank the water level is made from a water graphic with shiny plastic overlay.

Behind is the wind pump (to be painted) and in the far distance are the four terraced cottages.

Apart from a couple of huts, for which we have no information whatsoever so are using plastic kits for now, only the Station Master's house remains to design and build to complete the buildings for the layout.


This information came to light after the model was made.

Remarkably the brick tower still exists today!
Here it is glimpsed through the trees, courtesy of Google Street View.

View Larger Map

And here is a video relating the site today with scenes in the Oh Mr. Porter film.


Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Buffer stops here (plaster and track complete) - Part 3

After a bit of a disaster when the plaster was drying, we have managed to pull it together, with only minor cracks in the plaster still showing. The plaster has held pretty well, and seems solid. All of the track has now been laid, with the last bit being done to the sidings, and buffers added (but still need painting).

Siding track and plaster finished

LSWR M7 shunting cattle wagon in the siding. 

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Earthquake (Plaster cracking) - Part 2

Help, earthquake has hit Cliddesden!

A few problems occurred while the plaster was drying. We done the plastering in the kitchen, and we did not count on it taking 4 days to dry! So, this meant we had to move the board while it was still wet to another location (Spare bedroom). Just as we were going to move it, we found that the cat (Tiggs) had managed to climb on it and there were some nice paw prints in the landscape, and around the board. As the plaster was still pliable we managed to smooth them out. The following day, cracks started to appear where the polystyrene had gaps, and where the cardboard profile formers were. We were now heading for a disaster... 

Cracks in plaster

After a bit of a discussion on how we were going to patch this up we decided that we would wait for the plaster to finish drying and fill most of the cracks with Polyfiller. Then apply a layer of gauze and plaster to try and hold it together. This partially worked, but we still had to use some Polyfiller to fill a few more cracks once the plaster (with gauze) dried.

So, a few lessons have been learnt here:
1) Don't use cardboard with wall plaster (It gets a bit wet, and while drying will crack the plaster)
2) Try and but-up all polystyrene blocks so there is no gaps
3) Use gauze to tie the plaster together - it helps give strength
4) Don't move the board when it's drying
5) Don't leave the cat in the same room as the plaster is drying
6) Don't make the plaster mix too watery

Luckily though it has all stuck. Part 3 coming tomorrow...

Monday, 13 February 2012

Plastering the Base Board - Part 1

We have now plastered the landscape around Cliddesden station. Before we started we masked of the track and then using household wall plaster we applied a thin layer over the polystyrene. We found when we originally started applying it the plaster was drying too quickly, we soon had to water it down, so that we had longer time to cover, mould and smooth the landscape - this however had further complications while it was drying, more on that in part 2.

Here is a picture of the layout with it's new skin (while it was drying):
Plastering landscape
The plaster dramatically changed the look of the landscape, we could start to visualise how it might have been back in 1911.


Sunday, 5 February 2012

Station Cottages 1916?

Picture right is Number 3 and 4 station road, Cliddesden in about 1916, modelled in 'n' gauge. Created using my technique of ink jet printed graphics and board. The design and fabrication turned out to be quite involved compared to the simple station building created earlier. Possibly because there are four cottages but also some intricate details here particularly brick embellishments and roof buttresses.

Apart from the pleasure of creating a nice model from scratch it is the historical research that makes it worthwhile for me. 'The book' only shows a glimpse of No.4 at Cliddesden - the rear corner. But since all three stations on the line had the same style of cottages a look at Heriard and Bentworth & Lasham in 'The book' gave me the frontal views needed.

A flemish bond brick graphic was used even though close inspection of the actual brickwork seems to show a more random use of half bricks.

Google Street View has been a godsend in helping me to design the model building. Using it at Cliddesden revealed a close up, full frontal view or the cottages and this was used to scale the building using an assumed 6' 6" for the front door as a guide. Intricate details like the window lintels, roof buttresses and chimneys were easily noted and incorporated into the model.

The building rear was more problematical. There were no significant views in 'The Book'. But, Google Street View captured the rear at Bentworth & Lasham. Interestingly, the ground floor doors and windows have mostly been ripped out and replaced with modern fitments in completely different positions, presumably when the interiors were remodelled for modern living. This almost obliterated the original arrangement. Tale tale signs however, exist in the brickwork where the original lintels still show. This helped to locate the rear arrangement of ground floor doors and windows for the model, the locations of which differ from the front. Even so, I'm not 100% sure I have got it right and I have not found references for the original paint scheme, which I have assumed to be LSWR cream and chocolate.

It has been fascinating to see how the cottages have been remodelled over the years. Not only doors and windows but porches and extensions have been tacked on since the cottages were first built. I have had to mentally remove these to identify original traces of the bulding design. I have become a building detective!

Recently, I have been commenting about creating brick papers from graphics and ink jet printing and someone suggested that the colours fade over time. Well, I'm using Epsom DuraBrite Ultra ink. Epson claim it is water resistant and is colour fast for 200 years if shielded from light. Whilst, the buildings are not shielded from light they will be kept out of direct sunlight and may be stored in a box when not in use. I have also given the building a spray of fixative for extra protection. I'll let you know in 200 years how they fair.