Milo Valley Farm - baseboard prep, modifications and lighting plan

by brae  

Before I start gluing pieces to the baseboard, I wanted to prep the edges.  For a few builds, I've left the baseboard unfinished but painted on the edges.  For others, I've added strip wood.  This time around, I'm trying something new...iron-on veneer edging.  I needed the iron tonight anyway, so why not?  :D  I also watched this video first.

It turned out so well I wish I had thought to do this for my previous builds.  Ah, well.  Now I know.

I like to cut the basic wiring channels before assembly, because it's easier to do it that way.  Sometimes a lot of thought has to go into the lighting, but in this case, it's a one-room building with only basic lighting required.  I bought some new old stock E-Z-Lectric light fixtures from Itsy Bitsy Old Stuff.  They had four packages of two lights and one package of two spare bulbs.  They all worked.  :D

These are great since they already look a bit aged; a few of the bulbs show crackling in the frosted glass finish.  I figured 4 to 6 inside the building, then save the extras for replacement bulbs.

There are similar fixtures on the market today, but they have black backings.  I liked the older look of these brown backings.  You could paint the more modern ones as well.

Exposed conduit would be nice, but I'm thinking channel molding would be the easiest way to go here.  I can always add fake conduit.  At first I thought about putting them on the wall, but with the offset window it might be an odd layout.

Then I thought about putting straight cross beams overhead and using 4 lights.  I think this will work much better, but I'll tape them in place during the next dry fit to see how the lighting looks inside.

I will have a front outside light, too.  Not sure of the exact style yet.  The best place will be above the door, so I cut an mdf insert to close up the area where the window would have been.  I cut down the door frame to fit below the main front cross beam.  I also cut the window openings.  I centered them from side to side based on adding the side walls (not shown in place here).

I made the front windows the same height as the side windows.

I cut the openings from the side and left some wiggle room for adjustments.  I will add shims once they are installed.

Datsun 240ZG - part 2

by brae  

Just a quick update on the 1:12 scale Datsun 240ZG by Tamiya.

Once the front brakes are assembled, the parts are supposed to spin.  Success so far!  :D  I'm mixing the different colors of metallic silver on the fly to achieve various types of metal.  I think this adds realism even if these aren't the truest colors for the parts.  Obviously, these have not been dirtied up yet.

Another liberty I'm taking with the kit is making it a left hand driver.  Sometimes car model kits come with both dashboards so you can choose, but this one does not.  I spent just about as much as the kit to get the replacement parts, but I think it's worth it.  The conversion kit comes with three pieces.  Based on the previous model I built and the 1:18 scale diecast, which are both left hand drivers, other parts would switch places in a true conversion.  Again, I'm going for aesthetics here, not complete accuracy.  This kit gives you the aesthetic, and I suppose a more ardent modeler could fashion the rest.

I'm a fan of 3D printing to begin with, and this conversion would not be possible if not for 3D printing.  I don't know if I would have chosen this model if the left hand driver weren't an option.

Milo Valley Farm - base and foundation, part 3

by brae  

Continuing work on the base and foundation.  It was suggested by a Greenleaf member that I prime the foundation wood, so I did that.  I then applied a slightly thinner coating of stucco patch and pressed in the aquarium gravel.  I set the foundation upside down to make sure the upper edge was flat and uniform.

The sample I had made turned very yellow and I wasn't sure how well the material would stain once dry, so I added a black brown paint wash while the stucco was still wet.

This darkened the grout just enough to start.  A few of the stones didn't want to stay.  Might have been a combo of the thinner application and the added water from the paint wash.  No worries.  :]  I glued the wayward stones back in place and they held.

Once dry, I applied some more stucco material in areas where it seemed too thin.  Looks like the walls have been repaired over the years.  :D

To the new grout, I added a brown paint wash to remove the brightness.  I can dirty this up more later, as needed.

Looks good for scale.  :]

Any gaps or exposed areas of the wood foundation will be addressed in later landscaping.

Datsun 240ZG - part 1

by brae  

I'm going to start this build with a disclaimer: I am an artist, not a modeler.  :D  This is a very specific car, so be forewarned that I plan to take several liberties with it strictly for taste.  There are some fantastic stock and modified builds out there, and I admire the dedication and thought that went into those projects.  I will link to some these during my build.  But, my end goal here is to create a barn find.  How well-preserved or how dilapidated it ends up, who knows.  One thing I do know...it won't look much like the box art.

There are 14 sprues of parts with a smattering of other pieces.  So far, I'm really impressed with this kit.  I've not built a car this large, so the details are wonderful.  There are also pre-colored light covers and rubberized parts beyond just the tires.  I plan to build a complete model, but I'm not going to be a stickler for every last detail.  I will be adding a few elements not included in the kit, though.  A lot of this car will end up dirty, too, so some details will be lost in age and grime anyway.  I will pick my battles.  :D

There are 14 pages of detailed instructions in building the model, one of which is the main body color chart.

One of the first liberties I am taking is the body color.  I bought Testors Fiery Orange.  It's a beautiful red orange metallic.  It's so lovely that I came so close to making this a well-preserved barn find.  :D  I'm going to have to spray *something* new in this beautiful color to satisfy that itch.  I'm a fan of this color, just so you know.

If I were making a showroom new model, I would take more care to study all of the parts before priming.  As it is, I primed whole sprues in a color close to their molded color.  I like to work with primed plastic because I feel I can work more fluidly with colors and textures on a primed surface.

I bought a bunch of Testors bottled paints (plus one Model Masters) and have a few brushes on hand to start.  No reason for Testors other than I like their paints and have some already in my stash.  I will also be using craft paint acrylics.

I've scoured the internet and saved a bunch of photos of the real deal cars as well as some of the fantastic models done by top-notch modelers.  I also have my purchased 1:18 scale diecast and 1:25 scale models for some reference.  Huh...there's that orange again.  :D  I'm now also wondering why I don't have this car in matchbox size!  :\

I've built a similar engine before!  haaaaaaaaa...like that's going to help.

I do love that old ratty Datsun model.  :D

I won't be detailing every step of the build here on the blog but will post updates along the way.  I'll also make a recap post with links to the various steps as I get further along.

So, that's where I am now...primed sprues, instructions opened to step 1, sample photos ready....

Milo Valley Farm - modifying the base kit, part 1

by brae  

Bashing a kit is an organic process for me.  I like the trial and error method the best.  Many of my ideas have come from happy accidents.  :]  This is the reason my builds tend to stay in dry fit for so long...often for months...as I figure out processes and solutions to problems.

With the car model now selected, I can work on modifying the overall size of the barn.  The 1:12 Datsun will be roughly 14.25" long according to the info I've been able to find online.  The interior depth of the kit is roughly 15.25", which is not a lot of wiggle room.  I will add 1" to the back, shown here in foam core board.

The 2" gap between the car length and the room inside the barn should be enough.  The car will be parked mainly down the middle, but the wide door should allow for slightly offset placement as well.  My thought is this is a shed on a larger property.  This isn't the main barn.

When I was young, I lived on a farm (now a built-up suburb), and it had all these old sorts of places.  Here is one such example from some photos taken around the time we moved.  I'll have to scour some of my parents' photo albums for more pics...I'm sure there are a few from when we actually lived there.  The main house was the inspiration for The Haunted Heritage.


the main barn with side buildings


smaller sheds on the property

I will also be adding a removable back wall.  I made two for Baslow Ranch - one for the barn and one for the room for rent, but I know more now.  If I could change one thing about that build it would be to have the removable walls be part of the build and not just propped against the back.  For this build, I'm thinking channel molding and a sliding wall.  :]  This will add 3/8" to the exterior measurement beyond the added 1" for the depth.

The stone texture will add roughly 1/4" in thickness all the way around the foundation.  I've already noted to scoot the back of the foundation 1/4" away from the back edge of the base board to accommodate the stone.  I thought it would look odd to have a painted back foundation, so I will carry the stone all the way around the back.

This means I need to add 2.5" to the front of the foundation.  Back to the scrap wood stash....

What about the landscaping foam, you ask?  I just marked the outline and cut away the necessary amount.  The floor board will hide the foam at the front, no problem.  The landscaping will continue to be modified as the build goes on.  Besides, I need a rabbit hole for Friedrich now.  :D

The mdf side walls are 1/4" thick so they will sit directly above the stone finish except for a tiny bit on the elevated foundation.  This isn't an issue since the side walls will be glued to the floor board and ceiling beams.  On the off chance there ever is any sagging of the walls, floor or roof, it will just work in my favor.  :D

For the ease of measuring, I've placed the side walls against the base foundation since they are the same thickness as the stone finish.  I plan to keep the kit door frame, but the sliding glass door obviously won't work for a barn.  This leaves me with front wall inserts 2 7/16" wide.  I like to use foam core board when making changes instead of just cutting the kit down.  Helps me work out an idea without ruining any kit pieces in the process.

I'd like the use the side windows on the front, which will work here.  The windows will require some filler around them, so will cut completely new inserts 9 3/4" tall to fill the space under the front cross beam.

As an aside, I type out all these measurements in my blog not so much for my audience but for myself.  That way I don't have to write them down anywhere; I can just look them up on the blog.

I cut down the original floor board to fit the new dimensions plus a little additional in length, just in case.  I will cut this down after I fine tune the rest of the build.  Some of the excess from the floor board was used to make the back extensions for the side walls so that the material matches seamlessly in thickness.  I glued this on with wood glue.

Interestingly, the other remaining piece from the floor board ended up being the exact width of the front wall inserts!  :O  Unfortunately, there was only enough length to cut one from this piece.  I cut the other front wall insert from the unused deck board.  It's half the thickness of the other wall/floor materials, so I needed two layers.

Now for the ceiling support beams.  Since I want the door to remain centered, I needed to make my adjustments to the ends.  I like the tabs for stability, so I cut those into the shortened ends.  I will also need to cut the wood supplemental support beams, but I will wait until I'm further along for that.

Since I used the side windows up front, I will cut larger openings to use the front windows on the sides.  My Trio cutting bit has bitten the dust (haaaa!), and I await replacements so I can cut all the window openings.  :D

I need to adjust the fit of the door frame since I'm using thinner wall inserts.  The front-to-back beams still work because I didn't change the location of the cross beams when I added the 1" in length to the back.

Looks like there is plenty of room in the barn without having a ton of space to fill.  I'll have enough to make it look like forgotten clutter but not so much as to overwhelm.  A fine balance.

That should do it for now.

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