Ice Rink

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by rockislandmike, Oct 12, 2003.

  1. rockislandmike

    rockislandmike Active Member

    So, this may be "out there", but I was wondering if anyone's ever constructed an ice rink for their railroad, and how they did it. The only thing I can come up with so far is a transparent film (or plexiglass) with a gloss coat or dull coat (I think I'd try both to see what I liked better) overtop of an area painted white.

    Anyone else ????
  2. TrainClown

    TrainClown Member

    I saw an ice rink once

    It was this summer at the exhibition on our local club layout. The ice was made from a piece of mirror and the fella had put a turn table under it with a magnet or 2 on the turntable. He had LPB ice skaters with little magnets glued to the skates and they skated around and around on the mirror and twirled as they went.

    He also had a ski hill and a bobsled run but they weren't working. Frustrates me when I see an animation at a show that isn't working. I want to jump in and fix it.

  3. billk

    billk Active Member

    The ice rinks I've seen (NHL on TV) all have dull white surfaces. I don't think a mirror would look very realistic. How about one of those new-fangled roll-up cutting boards, what are they, Teflon or something? You could animate it like TC described.
  4. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    Just a thought, but plexiglass is available in white and in varying opacities. You could use one that more closely resembles ice in an ice rink. You could also put some light scratches on it to show the cuts made by the skaters.

    I also have a large roll of thin stickyback that is an opaque white and glossy. That stuff looks a lot like what you'd see at a rink. I haven't the foggiest where I got it though, probably at a drafting supply store. If you'er inerested, I can send you a piece and see if it works for you. Let me know.

  5. TR-Flyer

    TR-Flyer Member

    The white surface on a hockey rink comes from the concrete under it. Usually painted. I'd take thin plexi, 1/16 if you can get it, paint the lines, logos etc in reverse on the bottom side, then paint over all of that with some sort of "white" paint. Then you can "age" the top surface with a little sanding and a knife to get the effect of the skates.

    All of the above is conjecture because i haven't actually done a rink.

    Good luck, neat idea. Are you gonna animate it?

  6. Vic

    Vic Active Member

    Hi Mike, With Christmas comming on take a look in the decorations department of your favourite discount store. I've seen some animated ice rinks sold as part of those Christmas village things that look like they might be adaptable to a train layout with some changes that would make them more scale. If I was gonna tackle this project I would be real interested in the "guts" of the thing to build my own....the day after Christmas would be a good time to buy one....they are 50% off:D :D
  7. Sir_Prize

    Sir_Prize Member

    I've seen thoughs done myself. Never done one either.
    I did notice though... After the "skater" has twirled enough times
    you get a spot worn in the paint/ mirror backing. It appears the
    magnet had direct contact with a mirror (this case) and it scratched
    through the paint/coating. It toke a little away from the effect, but
    still was cool... CAuse stuff was moving besides the trains!;)

    Much Luck To You!
    ...and post pictures!!:p ;) :D
  8. TrainClown

    TrainClown Member


    The ice rink I saw had a disk just below the mirror about 6" across, and the magnets were out by the edge of the disk. So the LPB skaters skated around in circles and, I guess, the irregular drag on the bottom of the magnet they were mounted on caused them to spin around as they went. The disk and the magnets couldn't have been touching the glass directly as there was no trace of a mark on the silver backing. But some dust had blown down from the snow surrounding the scene and this did cause the skaters to leave a clean little path. But if they would've wiped the dust off the glass, this would've been moot.

  9. kevdog77

    kevdog77 New Member

    This is just a thought, since I've never used anything more than a mirror on the Christmas layouts I've set up. When you're pouring "water" (either matte medium or that woodland scenics stuff) for a lake or a river, they tell you to paint the river/lake bed black, faded to tan/brown at the shoreline. I'd bet that if you painted the lake bed either a very light grey or light blue, faded to white on the shore (to blend in with the snow), and then poured your "water", it would create a pretty realistic looking frozen lake or pond.
  10. txcavgr

    txcavgr Member

    I have not tried it yet, but I think a decent frozen pond (or ice rink) could be made using paraffin wax, from the grocery store for sealing jellies and stuff. It has a low temp melt so it shouldn't damage scenery when you pour it and it will likely come out in one piece if you goof. It dries to a whitish gray color like pond ice.
  11. jon-monon

    jon-monon Active Member

    Good idea, wonder if food colors would mix with the wax to get a murky pond color. It seems they wouldn't, but if they did, you could get some really nice lookin' ice. Maybe better to just paint hte murk under the wax. That's how the ice I used to skate on looked, it was green/black underneath, but frosty up on top.
  12. spitfire

    spitfire Active Member

    Mike, you don't say what kind of rink you're thinking of, whether a hockey rink with boards and markings, or just a pleasure skating rink.
    I found this image with a Google search and it has some pretty good details as to the colour of the ice and the typical marks left by skaters.
    A higher end hockey rink will typically be re-flooded more often than a pleasure skating rink, after which it will not have scratches.
    It seems to me if you use clear acetate, or plexiglass, you could paint the subsurface a light bluish grey, then scratch up the surface to simulate skate marks. Good luck and keep us posted if you decide to try it.


    Attached Files:

  13. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

    For a frozen pond with skaters that I made long ago, (and looked pretty good too!) I used a piece of frosted plastic, which I painted dark green on one side (the bottom) I then used the back of an exacto knife or some similar tool to scratch the "trails" left by the skates. I rubbed plaster onto the top surface the blew of the excess. It stayed in the scratches and dulled the remainder of the surface. I would think this would work for you as well, if the rink has a white surface like Hockey rinks, just paint the bottom appropriatly.
  14. rockislandmike

    rockislandmike Active Member

    Thanks, everyone. I think I might try the plexiglass, I'll let you know how it goes.
  15. jflessne

    jflessne Member

    How did the plexiglass turn out? I'm actually creating a Forzen pond with skaters tonight.

    I thought I would use normal white glue Might take a bit to dry but I think it will give me the right appearance. I can even make the surface a little irregular by putting small stones and sticks coming out. I already painted the foam under it white.

    I already created a birm around the outer edge with bathroom caulk. It will eventually be covered by woodland scenics snow.
  16. LongIslandTom

    LongIslandTom Member

    Oh, and don't forget to kitbash a Zamboni while you are at it. :D
  17. jflessne

    jflessne Member

    Funny you mention that. Your not going to put a Zamboni on my iced over pond. However that might be funny seeing one sticking out of the water. I saw a module last year that had a shark sticking out of a iced pool. Funny.
  18. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    We haven't seen Mike around in a while, and this is an old thread....

    With white glue you run a risk of cracking as the glue dries when it shrinks. You might want to build it up a thin layer at a time. I think that the colour would be good though!

  19. cmhockman78

    cmhockman78 New Member

    i would imagine a clear piece of plexiglass sratched with an ordinary dish washing scrub pad would look like a rink. you could do a reverse painting on the underside of it to give it some depth
  20. fsm1000

    fsm1000 Member

    jfl, I am curious as well. Also, maybe you could show pics etc too. :)

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