Mountain and layout techniques...

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by RonP, Jul 27, 2007.

  1. RonP

    RonP Member of the WMRC

    Hi guys i am ready to start making my mountains and laying out the forests and models. Do you have any links to help with making rock outcroppings with plaster and also painting techniques ?
  2. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    There was a great article in MR earlier this year about making a winter scene. There was a sidebar to the story about making mountains with plywood forms and wire mesh screen. Very brief, but excellent results for Rockies/Alps type "craggy" mountains.

    If you are looking more for Appalachian (north eastern US) type eroded/rounded mountains, you could use layers of carved styrofoam (use the pink or blue extruded type for easiest carving). Depending where you live, you may find this type of foam in thicknesses from 1/2" to 4". It can be glued together with polyurethane type glue (Gorilla glue), provided you mist some water on one side of the joint - the glue cures in the presence of moisture, not air.

  3. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

    The other form of scenery is referred to as hardshell. It's made by mixing hydrocal (a product available at hobby shops that's vastly superior to Plaster of Paris) with water. You then soak old paper grocery bags in it (irregularly shaped pieces...without the seams) and slapped them over a support lattice of chicken wire, masking tape, or wadded up newspapers. You can also get a plaster/gauze wrap which is a little less messy, but more costly.

    The Hardshell method is cheaper than the foam method, but less suited for movable layouts. Godzilla monsters (cats) can also smash mountains if they aren't well supported...speaking from experience.

    rock castings are made by taking whatever master you'd like, brushing on a layer of latex rubber mold...letting it cure...brushing on another layer...letting it cure...etc...and then peeling it away from the master. Next you pour in a hydrocal/water mixture and out pops a rock.

    I recommend adding some ground texture (ground cover available at your local LHS) while your painting.

    More green and more trees equals eastern north america...more brown and less trees equals western US & Canada.
  4. Mountain Man

    Mountain Man Active Member

    One of the articles mentioned using plywood "profiles" as though looking from the side at the outline of your mountains. The wire mesh was draped over this, pushed and pulled into the desired shapes, fastened down and then covered and scenicked in the usual fashion, IIRC.

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