Discussion in 'FAQs' started by Woodie, May 13, 2001.

  1. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

    I need to make some tarps to cover my 4 wheel fixed bogie freight cars.
    The prototype is this (the covered small wagons)
    and the model is [​IMG]
    Notice the model has the riser bars at each end of the car to support the cover. Any ideas on how to make a realistic tarp cover for each wagon? The wagons were kit built, and the instuctions do not give any ideas. I've tried paper and coloured it, but it was too stiff. hmmmmmmm Hope someone can give me some ideas. THanks


    [This message has been edited by Woodie (edited 05-13-2001).]
  2. Drew1125

    Drew1125 Active Member

    Hi Woodie!
    I'm kinda stumped as to how to do a tarp. I know that you can buy covered loads as a detail piece to fit various flat cars & gondolas, but that might not work for your situation.
    Maybe you could build your own covered loads out of scraps of foam or wood, & cover them with some type of thin brown paper. (used coffee filters?) Glue it together with a coat of white gle, or matte medium. This would have to be a static model that you could put on , or remove from, a car that it was made to fit.
    You could try some type of cloth, but I have a feeling it just might not look right in HO scale.
    It sounds like an interesting project though. Let us know how it turns out.
    BTW - That prototype shot is great! If it weren't for the train, I would've thought that was right down the road from me in eastern KY, or West VA!
  3. shamus

    shamus Registered Member

    To make tarps, use any grey coloured thin cloth, cut it to the shape you require, place it over the model and paint on 50/50 PVA glue. As it sets, the cloth finds it's own shape then wrinkles up just like the real thing.
  4. George

    George Member

    Hello All!

    I like Shamus's idea of using cloth. I hadn't thought of it, and it probably looks better than most ideas.

    What came to my mind was an article about this in one of the mags several years back which utilized Saran Wrap (clear plastic food wrap).

    The Saran was cut to a rough size and pulled down around the load on a flat. I don't recall how it was fastened for the next step. Next, it was covered with spray starch, then painted when dry. The spray starch is obviously what holds the shape.

    I don't remember the fine details of the article, as it was at least 15 years ago. But the benefit of using Saran Wrap was the krinkles in the plastic perfectly resembled the creases in canvas coverings when the job was finished.

    Shamus, do you think the same could be done with either method with nylon from a lady's stocking? I'm thinking of something somewhat sheer that would nicely replicate the sight of a material tightly stretched over a payload.

  5. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member


    Interesting thoughts.... plastic wrap or stockings... I'll experiment tomorrow.

  6. Drew1125

    Drew1125 Active Member

    Hi George!
    I DO know that nylon stockings make really decent looking window screens in HO scale. You can attach them with CA adhesive.
    I learned this when I built one of those Art Curren projects. It was an old time gas station kit (Life Like?), & instead of building the pump island, I framed in the overhang with strip styrene, & glued some stocking material to the inside, & made a very nice screened in porch.
  7. Dave Harris

    Dave Harris Member

    Woodie, why not try the ooooold standby ,Kleenex? Form it to the shape you want, then spray it with a 50/50 or less mix of water & white glue ( wetted with a drop of dish soap) coax to final drape while wet, let dry & airbrush to colour( that U is just for you UK. types) Alos fabric softener sheets work well & coffee stains look good. ....Dave

    L V Dave
  8. shamus

    shamus Registered Member

    Here is another way to finish it off, use Airplane Dope, it shrinks the cloth and stays rock hard afterwards.
  9. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

    You can also try lead foil, similar to aluminum foil but heavier. Military modelers use it to simulate canvas, it looks excellant!
  10. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member


    Where would I get lead foil from??


  11. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

  12. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

    Thanks Gary, I'll try a little closer to home! (Sydney OZ) [​IMG] See if my regular supplier has it, or a local military modeller.

  13. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

    I attempted a combination of all ways.

    Got some paper kitchen towel. The cheap, non bleached, without the pattern pressed into it. But it to shape and draped it over the rolling stock frame. sprayed with water to wet it thoroughly. moulded lightly into shape. dripped 50/50 PVA/water on it, and let it set. Came up OK actually. sagged at the right spots and mottled the finish. coloured with kahki colours, and weathered it a bit. Will put a pic up of the results when I get them developed.


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