MAJOR structure re-model. (I'm back.)

Discussion in 'Scratchin' & Bashin'' started by MilesWestern, Aug 18, 2008.

  1. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member


    I'm back with a very heavy kitbash of what used to be a cheap HO brick store from Dutch manufacturer REALIX. I wasn't too happy with the faux architectural detail that came with it (that cheap looking 1920's craftsman-esque peaked false front cornice.) However, the kit fits together nicely, and who wouldn't like a set of those windows for kitbashing? It also came with that really neat spanish tile awning, PERFECT! :thumb: So...I attached the kit walls together and then using patching plaster, gently (but somewhat heavily) coated the entire building. When that was dry, I took a file and sanded the door openings square again. I also took a flat-file and smoothed out the walls too, but still purposely retaining some character, as most stucco walls aren't baby's bottom smooth anyway. After everything was sanded, I drew out a new mission-revival facade out of 0.60 styrene and cut it out with an exacto knife, nippers and drilled and filed the "bell arch" I also cleaned up the top arch and then shot the entire building, roof off inside and out with Textured Concrete Spraypaint. (*because it adds some extra scale texture and fills seams and gaps quite nicely.


    A quick coat of Turqouise paint on the windows and awning, some bragdon enterprises light rust color mixed with $1 acryllic terra cotta colored paint for the awning. Before putting the windows and awning on, I painted the entire outside of the building with plain white acryllic paint, somewhat cream colored. Next, the windows and awning. The roof is as-built, just plopped in place in case I want to add interior detail, and I obviously intend to add window glass, shades and at least an "OPEN" sign, some painted on sign between the windows on the exterior of the structure and of course a name for the CAFE is needed, any ideas?





    So what do you guys think?

    Any suggestions to improve this model?
    (If you have suggestions, please read the entire post for some future planned improvements I already plan to do so as not to duplicate.)
  2. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Nice work... And I agree that the big blank wall is crying out for a painted sign of some sort.

    The only things I would add...

    Roof weathering
    Eavestrough/downspout across the back
    Some chipped stucco revealing the brick underneath (assuming that you intend this to be a brick building that was stuccoed at some point, rather than some other sort of construction). You can simply chip away at the plaster with a knife to reveal some brick detail in a couple of spots - low on the wall, or corners are likely candidates.

    :thumb: :thumb:

  3. Good looking building - way to take a cheapo kit & turn it into something really nice.

    I'd like to propose an alternate detail to Andrew's suggestion of a gutter and downspout across the back, though - having grown up in the southwest, I know that those are used less often than some might think - using some chalks or a quick pass with the airbrush and some paint colored to match your ground work along the bottom 18" or so of the wall will replicate the mud splatters caused by the water rushing off the back of the roof during the occasional rainstorm. And if you want to go all out, you could indicate the corresponding little gully in the dirt.
  4. Art Decko

    Art Decko Member

    Very nice! Great job on the Mission Revival cornice!
  5. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Is this one going on your San Jac branch?
  6. Dave Harris

    Dave Harris Member

    Nice stucco Miles. I have often thought that we don't make near enough use of patching plaster or drywall compound , or for that matter many other "real world" materials-- opting instead to use speciality , quite often expensive, hobby products instead.
    I can't remember what the product was now, but several years ago I was at the NMRA convention in Denver demonstating & selling my Good Ones Hi Strength Cut Off Disks and was next door to a guy selling some sort of speciality product in a small jar for 6 or 8 dollars. After the show closed for the night I was talking to him & he was filling more jars up out of a 5 gallon container that came straight from a building supply store & cost about 15 dollars for 5 gallons. I think it may have been drywall compound & he was selling it to make concrete looking roads -- I don't remember for sure but it was along those lines.
    I guess I don't begrudge him his success, it's just sad that people don't have the imagination to cast about for inspiration as to what is possible.
  7. Triplex

    Triplex Active Member

    Definitely convincing Southwestern.
  8. DeckRoid

    DeckRoid Member

    That is a wonderful building! Stunning, even.

    I have a few ideas for signs on my buildings, and I have no idea how to get them to look faded and what not, but right now I am trying to scratch build some abuntments for 3 bridges on my layout.

    Here is one pic I found that I would love to put on a building.


    Spray on concrete... huh.. I would have done it the hard way... mixed up some plaster o' paris and slapped it on. I'm not the smartest blade in the tool box...
  9. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    Everyone, Thanks so much for you compliments, and suggestions! Stay tuned as I build a scene around this fun little building.

    Deckroid, I DID use patching plaster glopped on and THEN to SEAL the plaster, I shot it with the lightly textured concrete spraypaint, it's not that you're the sharpest blade in the box, you just need to read my post a bit more carefully, you were correct.

    Your idea for the faded sign is exactly the kind of thing I'm about to try!
  10. cnw1961

    cnw1961 Member

    Miles, great way to enhance this kit. Looks ten times better than the picture on the box :thumb::thumb:.
  11. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    Nice work, Miles. :thumb::thumb: Anyone seeing this for the first time would be unlikely to guess its origins.
    For signs, you might find something in the way of dry transfers to use as a starting point, along with an airbrushed background and, perhaps, some home-cut stencils. Weathering could be accomplished with some judicious sanding, and either washes or oversprays of extremely well-thinned colours, including the original wall colour.
    A couple of kitchen vents on the walls would add some detail, too, as would plumbing vents and perhaps some air conditioning equipment on the roof.

  12. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

    WOW you did a fantastic Job Miles!!! :thumb: :thumb: :mrgreen:
  13. kirkendale

    kirkendale Member

    Great looking re-do. Can't wait to see future pics.
    thanks for sharing.
  14. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Miles, if that building is for your San Jac branch, most of those towns were just small towns out in the middle of farmland. San Jacinto, Hemet, and some of the other towns up that way had a significant Mexican population, many of whom were field hands who harvested the crops. The building looks like a combination Mexican restaurant/cantina. I wouldn't be surprised if you looked around the older sections of Niles, Irvington, or Centerville, you might find a survivor old style cafe that would give you some inspiration for a name.
  15. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    Oh, I have looked. The problem is that I've ate at most of them, and very few had even passable Mexican Food. (which is a real hard is it to make amazing carne asada!?)

    I think I might name it (Mexican Name)'s Cantina. It will be adjacent to an old passenger car diner, as shown in the photographs below.


    (If you're wondering what's up with the farmhouse, I'm rebuilding it to make it look less recognizably Model Power) I'm also adding attic and architectural detail. That bad looking paint is just temporary.

    Up Next: Scenery.
  16. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Miles, one thing that will really help that farm house is to remove the shutters, if possible. Shutters and storm windows are a midwestern and Eastern detail. Here in Cally where "weather" is not an issue and real storms are a once a century event, shutters are only found as decorative additions to houses and most of those houses receiving decorative shutters are tract homes. An old farm house would be built to function, and architectural details that did not have a purpose would not be included.
  17. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    It's really frustrating trying to remove the shutters on the building. I've only managed to get some of them off, and all took quite a lot of elbow grease to get off using an exacto and small flathead screwdriver. The Problem is that the windows are so narrow, the walls look a little barren without them now. I'll see what I can do to remedy this. I think I'll need some photos of homes built in the 1870's-1890's in that you have any photos of historic homes in your area?
  18. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    Here's the structure in it's natural habitat. I was thinking of making a stucco courtyard adjacent to the building on the side shown in the photo below. It would include an arched entryway, a adobe fireplace, trellis, tables and chairs for those wanting to enjoy the weather.

    More progress, the earth has appeared!

    Looks barren in this photograph, but look what a difference scenery makes!
  19. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Miles, I don't have any photos of historic homes in this area, but I don't think they would differ much from historic homes all over coastal California or the central valley. Homes in the high Sierras may look different, and may even include shutters, especially if the homes were used in summer only and shut up tight during the winter months. It has been standard practice for ranchers to raise beef cattle on the Sierra foothills in winter months and then drive them up into high Sierra meadows in the summer. Today they are hauled up to the meadows in trucks in the spring and back down in trucks in the fall, but historically they would simply have spring and fall cattle drives.

    It might be easier to just cut out the shutters and windows. I was just looking through my Walthers catalog, and Evergreen makes virtually all of the sidings out of styrene. Grandt Line makes window casting priced at full list at 8 castings for $3.00-$4.00. When you cut out the windows and shutters, you might be able to save the windows, and just reinstall them without the shutters and fill in the siding with Evergreen siding stock. You could also cut the hole slightly wider, and put in 2 small windows with a bit of the Evergreen siding between the windows. You might substitute a single window with a double window from Grandt Line. Finally, you might build your own windows out of styrene strips.

    If you know where the house is going to be located on your layout and how it is going to be oriented, you can just fix visible walls. In fact you can use sheet styrene for any of the back walls and save the detailed pieces in your scrap box for other projects.

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