Category: "Animals"

Jebediah McCants

by brae  

That's my horse's name - Jebediah McCants. Maybe I'm wrong, but I doubt anyone guessed it. :D

I looked up the meaning of Jebediah, and it means "beloved friend." McCants is some distant ancestral name, and I thought the names sounded good together. I'm figuring our RFD carrier is Mr. McCants, since the carriers were charged with supplying their own transportation, therefore caring for their own horses.

Jebediah looks eager to get on with things, no? I'm gearing up to gear him up, researching more in depth on harnesses and the like. More on that to come...

Ivy Hollow - what's in and what's out

by brae  

I've run into a snag with the buggy kit, but all is not lost. More on that to come.

I am realizing just how little room I have to work with inside. Instead of changing the game plan and altering the building to be larger, I will forge ahead with what I've started. I originally wanted a postal teller, a desk, a gate to separate the public from the postmaster, a potbelly stove, and a bench or chair for waiting customers. It's just too small inside for all that without having the customer practically standing outside to conduct business let alone sit inside, and the postmaster has no room to work in the back area. I don't think the door would be able to open inward with this setup.

It doesn't have a lot of pizzazz looking in, either. Boooorrrring.

So, the Chrysnbon desk is out (as if you could really see it anyway). :[ Instead, I would have one gate, a smaller desk, a countertop for sorting mail (shelves on the wall above as well), the postal teller and a stove. I could make a built in counter all the way across in the back and have a stool to serve as a desk. That would likely be cleaner and more efficient for the postmaster. If the customer wants to sit, they'll still have to go elsewhere. haaaaaaaaaa

It's a more dynamic view looking in as well. Hi, peeps! :D

I'm also realizing how long the mail wagon and horse are going to be on the board, especially compared to the post office. This might all end up looking ridiculous. After staring at it awhile, I turned the building on an angle on the landscaping board. Why do structures have to be square on the base? They don't! :D This looks like it might work better, but it was still off to me. The horse is ignoring us.

So, I flipped the whole shebang. Since the horse faces a direction that looks better photographed from a certain angle, this might be the best layout in the end. Hi, horsie.

Let's hope the wagon issue is fixed soon so I can keep on with it.

Seeking a book

by brae  

I am seeking this book if anyone has a line on one.  It's Making Model Horse Harness by Anne Funnell.  From what I gather, she used to be Lenham Pottery Models, involved with both horse models (including scale model harness kits, which would be awesome to find as well) and dollhouse pottery.  It seems her business and website are no longer active.  The book was apparently self-published as well, so it's likely scarce.

Please let me know if you find the book.  :]

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UPDATE: I found it!!!!!  :D

Making a 1/12 scale horse - part 5

by brae  

Continuing work on the 1/12 scale model horse. Once the putty set, the tail seemed pretty solid so I sanded the putty areas lightly with 320 grit to smooth it further. I then covered the eyes with Winsor & Newton Masking Fluid since I want to protect them during the painting process.

This is a pricey fluid used for watercolor painting; it covers any space you want to remain white on a painting.  You use an eraser to remove it from the paper after the paint has dried.  I used a 50% off coupon at Michaels.  It's a good crossover product that will work on other things beyond paper.

I sprayed the horse with Testors Flat Light Aircraft Grey to have a light primer coat to start.  Priming brings out any flaws that were unnoticeable before, so I will sand those once the primer cures.

I'm making a grey/roan horse, so I looked online for reference photos. I've never mastered the airbrush, but I am pretty good with a regular brush. The next part will involve painting the base details. Even though I plan to add fur, the color underneath will show through so I couldn't leave it black and bare white plastic. I've removed the masking on the eyes just in case leaving it on a long time caused issues; I can always add more when I paint the face detailing.

I also have some good leads on tack, which will need to be made before fur is added so I don't mar the final finish.  I want to be able to just buckle any tack onto the horse for pictures and remove it immediately.  So, it might be awhile before you see the horse again.  I'll update on the tack as I work through it.

Making a 1/12 scale horse - part 4

by brae  

Continuing work on the 1/12 scale model horse.  I found a great tutorial about removing the tail and building up with Apoxie Sculpt, though this technique ends with a sculpted tail instead of fiber.  This site directed me to two additional tutorials - one for adding a tail and one for hairing.  The hairing for this example does not drill holes for the mane, so I will be on my own for that, but it is good to see the prep work involved.

I ended up going with the wrapped wire tail from the second tutorial using 18 gauge copper wire.

I followed the tutorial, but mine ended up looking a little different.

I wrapped the wire with DMC cotton using Weldbond adhesive.

I left it long since the horse body is partially hollow, and I thought the added length would be good for stability.  When I inserted the wire, I added Weldbond and super glue gel to the top since it would likely come in contact with the body inside.  Every bit helps.

I had some Apoxie Sculpt in my stash from when I first envisioned this project.  I looked at the Apoxie website, and they say their products have a three-year shelf life.  I've never opened it since I bought it in January 2016, so it would likely be okay.  But, I would be heartbroken if it falls apart later, so I replaced it with fresh product.

Some of the attributes listed on the back are promising: highly adhesive, 0% shrinkage and cracking, 1-3 hour working time, and 24-hour full cure.  There's a nifty table showing how the putty changes over the working time.  It also comes in colors, which is less of an issue for me since I plan to paint the whole horse anyway.  I'm using white putty.

Part B was very stiff and sticky coming out of the cup, but it mixed easily.  (Yes, I made way more than I needed, but I didn't want to have to start over if I needed more.)  I did use latex gloves while mixing but used my bare hands when working the putty into place.  You can use water to smooth it, and the website recommends freezing unused portions to extend the life.

I also have a good set of sculpting tools from way back in my art days.  :]

Using a 1/4" drill bit, I drilled a hole for the wire, making it large enough to also add the putty.  As you can see, I got the first hole too low.  The drill bit wanted to slip on the smooth plastic.

I sculpted the tail definition from the body to the wire and plugged the extra hole.  Mine looks different from the tutorial, but I think it will work just fine.  You can sand the putty once it's cured, so I will smooth it out even more later.

I used the same putty to fine tune the slit along the neck at the withers...

...and at the forehead.

Now, I leave the putty to set.

I've been thinking, since I might want to have some accessories for the horse later on, I thought it best to make those pieces before adding any delicate furred finishes.  So, I'll be stopping after I paint while I either shop or make things.  If anyone knows of reasonable tack sources or good tutorials, please let me know.  I've been doing my own research as well.  I'm leaning toward a retired racehorse, though I also have that old mail wagon kit.  Different tack setups for each.

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