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Card Trams - Trams. - Other Areas. - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Wed Mar 13th, 2019 03:35 pm
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Petermac
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I have to ask David - if these latest prints need backing with stiffer card, what's the point of the plotter/cutter ?

Why not just print normally onto suitable card in the first place ?



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 Posted: Wed Mar 13th, 2019 03:41 pm
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wahiba
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The plotter/cutter is far better, and quicker at getting around the awkward corners. I would normally use thicker card but this was a pack for photo printing on. Actually a matt finish and pictures looked washed out. Graphic printing though looks fine.

When cuting out apertures for windows and the like the benefits really become apparent.



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 Posted: Wed Mar 13th, 2019 03:53 pm
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Petermac
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wahiba wrote: The plotter/cutter is far better, and quicker at getting around the awkward corners. I would normally use thicker card but this was a pack for photo printing on. Actually a matt finish and pictures looked washed out. Graphic printing though looks fine.

When cuting out apertures for windows and the like the benefits really become apparent.

Yes, I understand that David but you said "they will need backing with stiffer stuff".  Don't you have to cut the "stiffer stuff" to fit around your plotter prints ?  If so, then there doesn't seem much point in having the accuracy of the plotter/cutter as the backing will presumably be cut by hand ............................. :roll:



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 Posted: Thu Mar 14th, 2019 05:32 pm
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wahiba
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Plotter cutters like the Cameo are derived from CAD pen plotters that were superceded by ink jet printers. As they were originally designed to work with pens rather than knives the downward pressure, hence the cutting depth is a bit limited. Laser cutter heads cut thicker material but cost a lot more. Practically though the mechanism are the same.

The best way to consider card is a metal plate that can only be formed in one direction. Other than basic stippling a dome cannot be formed out of paper, such a shape has to be built up orange peel fashion. This really is the major limitation for card modelling. It makes modern smooth vehicles difficult to model, and the steam domes on steam locos. Coaches though with their flat, or gently curved in one direction only sides make good card subjects.

Like sheet metal stiffening can be by the use of webs, which means the stiffeners behind card do not have to come to the edge.

When it comes to windows the easy option is go old fashioned printed tin plate and have printed windows. It was with the idea of printing tin plate on an ink jet printer that I re-discovered card modelling (previously it had been models off the back of Weetabix packets - remember them?) and a dalliance with some micromodels I acquired from somewhere. I do have the patience to go down that route.

Practically I have found I can stiffen card with window apertures with the acetate sheets for the windows. This plus the ribs seems to do the job quite well. As often with trams all that can be seen behind the window is the drive chassis a layer of black, or silvered card behind the acetate is another option I have tried. By now it is 3 ply and stiffness is no longer a problem.

So long as one has chassis bodies for a three car unit can be knocked up quite quickly. For a model with a centre powered car and trailers at either end this works well. A number of units littled modeld were three car units. Liverpool Overhead Railway and the LMS Railcar Units, both of which I have as work in progress. The Docklands Light Railway has teo car units, often doubled to 4 cars. They are pretty good for card modelling being quite angular in form.

Generally Urban/Light Rail are put together. In fact the latest Tram/trains are really a bit of both.

The following are some of my earlier efforts in card.

This one has acetate windows. It also uses coloured card with seam lines from the plotter.



An early effort at an urban rail/tram. Bogies and chassis are all from Underground Ernie stock. This is made from printed white card, I think it was hand cut pre-cameo days.


My only effort at a steam engine. I did not have the Cameo then and it was cut out by hand. I cannot find the drawing so might resurrect it some time. Note dome problem.


A Hong Kong Tram on 12mm track in HO.  Black reinforcement is used for the windows to hide the toy mechanism. cut windows mean the Cameo was used. This coloured card with plotted seam lines.





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