Drywall compound

Discussion in 'Tips & Tricks' started by cpNscale, Dec 8, 2006.

  1. cpNscale

    cpNscale Member

    Does anyone use ready to use drywall compound for their scenary in place of mixing plaster.I was thinking of making roads and grade crossings with this material and also for finishing off my mountians with it.
    Is it possible to get the same results as with plaster without all the headachs of plaster.
  2. LongIslandTom

    LongIslandTom Member

    Compound/Spackling makes excellent road paving material yes. It's good for that because you can smooth it with a wet sponge, and it dries with a consistency that looks like scaled-down asphalt, and looks really good when you paint it properly.

    However, I wouldn't use Spackling for making mountains.. You are better off using plaster/hardshell for that.

    Hope this helps.
  3. Ralph

    Ralph Remember...it's for fun!

    Yes, I've used joint compound for roads and grade crossings as well as for rocky outcroppings. It takes stains and tints pretty well for coloring too. As you might expect dust is an issue when sanding down road surfaces but I prefer it over mixing plaster.
  4. jetrock

    jetrock Member

    The best way to control dust when using drywall joint compound for scenery is to use a sanding sponge instead of sandpaper.
  5. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    I use plaster of paris for the rough shapes on my mountains and hills. I then go back and use the ready-mix drywall compound to get the shapes I want. I like it because it stays workable for hours after applying. I use a variety of tools, but mostly a putty knife to get the shapes I want. I find I can go back six or eight hours later and still cause it to slit and bulge giving me some interesting outcroppings. I never sand this work afterwards, no need to.
  6. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    The drywall compound is pretty soft. It works great for some stuff, but I wouldn't expect it to hold up a mountian very well.

  7. N Gauger

    N Gauger 1:20.3 Train Addict

  8. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    I start off with blue foam, then one or two layers of paper towels soaked in plaster. That gives me a good base. I can then pack the drywall compound in spots to create the outcroppings, or even a larger area. It holds up quite well just as long as it's not too thick. I really like its long-drying properties.
  9. cpNscale

    cpNscale Member

    Thx everyone for your replys,as for my mountains i have already covered the wire screen with plastercloth and plaster mix.Now its is time for the finishing touches with the mountains.Looks like i will get a good size tube and start on my roads.

    Check out my post here on the gauge for my progress and i will be posting some new pics soon.
  10. fsm1000

    fsm1000 Member

    I used it on my layout to make my mountains. Pop on over and look under 'scenery'.
    Anyhow, one other thing I like about it [other then being premade] is that when i added in crushed stone it took hours to set. This might seem like a disadvantage but it isn;t. Plaster tends to set so fast I had trouble making it look 'right'.
    This stuff set so slowly I could take my time making it look how I wanted it too. :)

    I really like it and plan to continue using it myself. :)
    I bought it in 10kg tubs.

    Hope that helps.
  11. TrainNut

    TrainNut Ditat Deus

    After I have gotten the basic shapes of my mountains and other scenery using WS plaster cloth over newspaper, I come back and apply wall joint compound over the plaster cloth for a nice hard shell. Check out the layouts in any of my links to see examples.
  12. hooknlad

    hooknlad Member

    I have used Sheetrock compound in the past for modeling mountains. I went with the chicken wire or mesh for the framing. I lightly watered down some drywall compund into a bowl, and used strips of newspaper to cover the mesh. Once that hardened, I applied full strength drywall compound over that. It worked very well. It is easily painted and looks great when it is done as well.
    Northlandz in Flemington NJ, the majority of that massive layout, the mountains were formed using many buckets of the stuff.
    If i had to do it over however, id mix some plaster of paris into a wet fibreglass drywall compound, to help it dry quicker and to keep any possible shrinking down. My 2 cents.
  13. cpNscale

    cpNscale Member

    Speaking of shrinkage,how much can i expect if i lay it down as my roadways,or even cracking?
  14. fsm1000

    fsm1000 Member

    It only cracks if it is really thick [like an inch] otherwise it should be fine for roads if a quarter inch.
  15. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    You have two choices if your roadbed cracks. The first would be to patch it, drywall compound patches very easily. The second would be to leave it. A small crack would look authentic, a large one might require that you put up a few "detour" or "road construction" signs around it.:D :D
  16. Herc Driver

    Herc Driver Active Member

    I used it and found that both road grades I did cracked and were bumpy, leaving me to believe that the compound was too dry when I worked it into place. But it does look good when weathered and painted. I'm thinking of one day doing all my roads this way...once I finalize exactly where each building will rest.
  17. oldtanker

    oldtanker Member

    Herc, drywall compound is supposed to be applied in very thin layers. If you put it on thick enough for a road in HO or larger scales in one application it will crack....I'm betting it would look very good weathered with the natural cracking.

  18. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

    Very interesting topic.
    I have a question: Do you people ,when making a road , use a base material first ( such as a .030 styrene sheet ) then apply the drywall compound on top of it, or do you apply the drywall compound directly on top of the pink extruded styrene, or the sculptamold, or the hydrocal ?
    A picture ( in N scale if possible ) would be very appreciated
    Tia B.T.
  19. stripes

    stripes Member

  20. pennman

    pennman Member

    Wet Premix

    Ok guys this is how we do houses..we use this in bazookas or wet bangos (drywall tools)

    They make mess drywall tape (looks like gauze). You mix your mud (premix) You want to buy finishing mud(USG blue can)(The green can is courser material)

    Mixwith water till it flows thick but not like water.

    Run your gauze tape thru it and get agood coat on it and lay it up let it set hard

    add either straight mud to it or more mesh (your call, your scenery) Stonger than cast plaster when done right.

    I would put to layers down going opposite directions letting each layer dry,them put straight mud on.

    If you go to a drywall supplier they sell pigments and tints as wellas a form of hydro cal in 50lb bags. Its alot cheaper when you take it out of the hobby or medicalfield and put it in construction.

    Yall have fun,

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