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West Coast Miniatures - On Members Workbenches. - More Practical Help - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Fri Mar 20th, 2009 12:58 pm
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87 101
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Right rather that clog up any of my other threads I thought it would be better to keep work on the buildings project seperate. Here I can discuss any ideas and sugestions for the buildings and accessories that im planning to build. The first model on the drawing board will be the station building. After building the card version for Potters lane I have worked out how to produce the same building in resin using normal resin for the internal walls and clear resin for the outside. Basicly once I have the masters made I can then pour the molds to demand so im not wasting stuff. As the buildings have distintive windows I thought that clear resin would be the way to go as all the glazing bars and doors can be molded with the walls. Various buildings will be offered using the same basic construction so for instance the basic one would be like Potters lane without the extension. This uses four internal walls whilst a slightly bigger one would use five. The internal walls comprise of three types, plain, ticket office with window and door and waiting room with double doors. The building can be fitted with an extension either on the left or right with an open shelter/bike shed or like the prototype at Kidsgrove a bike shed and station entrance. Talking of the prototype I found out the other night that the prototype of the signal box has recently been demolished as part of the WCML upgrade. Once I have the station buildings in production I will move onto the signal box. Again this will be broken down into componant parts so that the boxes can be produced in diffrent sizes. I have various ideas for accessories ranging from vending machines to phone boxes. Where possable they will be lit using leds and will be configured to work off a standard 12v supply. Having disscused with the 'boss' last night I have the green light to order the stuff for the molds so that will be getting done today. If I can get some wills brick sheet at Shildon tomorrow work can then start on the masters so pics as and when for the all important feedback. Once im happy with the masters production will start with the first building destined for the garden railway to replace the hornby one the has a big hole in it!!:roll: 

Just as a footnote im also thinking of converting PC power supplies for model railway use. As discussed elseware they have three realy usefull output voltages of 3.3v, 5v and 12v so are ideal for powering lighting, signals, etc. There are two ways I could do this one is to source new PSUs although they are about £20 a pop or I could just do the conversions with the customer supplying the donar uint. There is also the more risker route of getting a supply of recycled ones from old PCs and refurbing them. With the new WEE regs getting rid of old electrical stuff is getting harder so im sure that there would be a supply of PSUs if I look in the right places. ;-)

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 Posted: Fri Mar 20th, 2009 09:35 pm
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The stuffs been ordered now so hopefully it will turn up on Tuesday as Rachel will be off work celebrating our wedding anniversery (I have to work!) and will be in to sign for the delivery. :roll: ;-)

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 Posted: Sun Mar 22nd, 2009 11:05 pm
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Sounds like things are starting to move along nicely Dave :thumbs

You've got a lot of plus points in your plans - I like the internal wall units idea for your buildings.  A few standard units used in different configurations to give a range of options.  Keeps costs to a minimum and yet gives you loads of versatility - good one.

I also like the idea of using your electronic skills to modify redundant computer bits.  Electronics baffle many of us but we know they have a real value in model railways.  I've lost count of the number of times I've wished I could do something if only I knew how and yet knowing that the learning is just not something I want to do !!  Far better to let the professionals do it for me and I just buy their expertise.  The only word of caution is the possibility that new computer sales seem to be slowing with the crunch.  That would suggest that donor machines for you are also going to become more scarce. :roll:

Happy anniversary for Tuesday - sorry you've got to work but at least you've got the use of the pink and purple bits !!!  :cheers:cheers:cheers



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 Posted: Mon Mar 23rd, 2009 10:07 am
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Matt
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Hi Dave

i would look into legal stuff regarding the power supplies, if one does go up in smoke under someone’s layout how do you stand legally. i know a lad who works at the skip and they cannot give anything away. if they give a Hoover away and it blows up they are liable. he said people do come in just to get something on them.

 

One problem i found with the walls I made is the mould bending due to the heat during the setting stage. I would use the foam board you have to make a base, lay the mould on top and then use a second board with a window in and place this over the mould and secure with bolts and wing nuts making a clamp over the mould. This will prevent the mould bending. Also take into account when making the silicone mould the depth of the mould, as the deeper the mould the more resin you will need to use. I think it recommends 5mm around the master when you cast the silicone but you will get away with 2mm. if you do use a base\clamp and are producing a few moulds think of a way of vibrating the mould during casting and this will prevent air pockets forming, one of those cheap back massages would be ideal for this and SWMBO can use it when you don’t. When pouring the resin only pour 60% and then use a brush to ensure you get resin into all the knocks and cranny’s and then add the rest. Fill the mould with water so you know the amount you will use and this will cut down on wastage. Have a couple of moulds made up odf bits and bobs like bins, aws ramps etc. you can use the resin you have left to stick in these moulds, a little resin will go a long way.  

 

something like this turned upside down then the base placed on the balls.

 

[img]http://tbn1.google.com/images?q=tbn:NCqND9Suo7nPMM:http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/31xNW6w4NrL._SL500_AA280_.jpg[/img]

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 Posted: Mon Mar 23rd, 2009 05:40 pm
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Petermac
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Good point about the legal side Matt. :thumbs:thumbs  I'd forgotten UK has become the kind of society where if you cut yourself shaving, you'd probably sue the manufacturer of the razor blade for selling a dangerous weapon without a warning in 100 languages stating that the edge is sharp and could cut !!!!

Thinking about it, as I'm bald, maybe I could sue the manufacturer of the hairbrush I used years ago !!!!

This "no win - no fee" insurance scam society is one of the reasons I left UK.  I was a pyrotechnician so you can imagine how many doors that opened for the greedy scroungers !!!  In 5 years, our annual public liability insurance premiums went up from £4,500 to over £12,000 !!!!!  It was getting to the point where we worked for the government for the first 5 months of the year and the insurance companies for the next 5.  If I was lucky, the remaining 2 months paid overheads and wages,  bought the fireworks from mainly Spain and the Far East and occasionally, left me a bit of profit !!!



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 Posted: Mon Mar 23rd, 2009 06:14 pm
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mikeyh
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My god Petermac! by looking at your avatar i really had you down as an accountant or a solicitor! but a Pyrotechnician!! that must have been an interesting job!

mikey (learning never to judge by appearances)

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 Posted: Mon Mar 23rd, 2009 10:26 pm
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 Sounds like a posh word for an Arsonist to me, whats your nickname Peter, "Moxie" ???:mutley:mutley



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 Posted: Mon Mar 23rd, 2009 11:07 pm
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carefull Kevr you never know where he might shove one >?
with a short fuse!!

:pedal:mutley:mutley:mutley:cool:

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 Posted: Tue Mar 24th, 2009 05:42 am
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After speaking to him i would never of guessed that either, he sounds posh folks. Maybe where he lives in France he has to show how better the English are :thumbs

Phill

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 Posted: Tue Mar 24th, 2009 08:02 am
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Petermac
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Mikeyh - if you thought my avatar suggested an accountant or solicitor - I wonder what your's suggests !!!! :roll::roll::roll:  In answer to your question re the job, I can certainly admit that there were not too many dull moments in it !!!!!

Kevr - the word "technician" was often substituted by the word "maniac" - I like to think the former more accurately describes what I did but very often, it felt like the latter :hmm:hmm

Phill - we don't need to show the French how good we are, they already know it.  A french friend who'd just visited UK for the first time, asked me if we had a problem with the french.  No, said I, why do you ask.  Well he said, I spent a couple of days sight-seeing in London and you have a "Trafalgar Square", a "Waterloo Station".  :pedal:pedal:pedal:pedal



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 Posted: Tue Mar 24th, 2009 09:05 am
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Yeah but my Avatar shows a policeman, and thats what i was for 25 years!

mikey

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 Posted: Tue Mar 24th, 2009 09:21 am
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Petermac
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We all have our cross to bear Mikey !!!!



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 Posted: Tue Mar 24th, 2009 10:36 am
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phill
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Petermac wrote: We all have our cross to bear Mikey !!!!


:thumbs:mutley:mutley

Phill

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 Posted: Wed Mar 25th, 2009 05:07 pm
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A big box of stuff arrived yesterday so work will start this weekend on making the molds for the buildings. :roll: ;-)

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 Posted: Wed Mar 25th, 2009 10:59 pm
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Started work tonight on the masters for the station buildings......









So far I have one wall finished with the windows to add to the other wall. As the stuff for the molds has cost a small fortune I am planing to make one mold with all the outside walls on it. All the internal walls and roof will be on a seperate mold. Hopefully this will make future reproduction easer. ;-)

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 Posted: Thu Mar 26th, 2009 06:42 am
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Petermac
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Looks good Dave but it's posed a couple of questions. :???:

What are the gaps between the windows above the plain white band ? and secondly, IMHO you ought not to make your mould too big !!

I note you say you're going to make one mould for all the outside walls.  This could be the very devil to keep flat.  Matt did some moulds for stone walling and I seem to remember he had a few problems so I'd check with him before you pour your expensive materials down the drain. :roll::roll::roll:  My personal feeling is that smaller castings would be easier to do and have less rejects - but then who am I to say.................:oops::oops:



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 Posted: Thu Mar 26th, 2009 09:23 am
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Matt
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petermac

you are right, my wall moulds are 12cm by 10cm and they still bend with the heat from the resin.

i would make a separate mould for each wall section. another advantage of this is if 1 piece of walling does not turn out you can just cast that section rather than mess about sectioning a larger mould. the resin is only workable before thickening, if you mix smaller amounts for smaller moulds then the the odd mistake now and then won't matter. make a couple of mistakes with a larger mould then the cost will go up. i did post some tips in the 4th post on this thread about air bubbles and solving the problem with mould bending. (that was before the crazy bunch started chucking handbags at each other)

 

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 Posted: Thu Mar 26th, 2009 05:31 pm
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87 101
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Peter. The holes at the top are where the concrete roof supports stick through.

Matt did you use a wooden frame with your molds?

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 Posted: Thu Mar 26th, 2009 10:19 pm
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Dave never cast models but several years in a patternmaking/foundry enviroment taught me a few lessons. Please dont take this as critisism its intended to save you some time. On post 15 the last picture close up on the doors, a couple of your frames are not quite square but more obvious the edges have a burr where the knife cut curls the plasic up as it scores. In a one off this is a quick fix, If you dont tidy it now you will have to tidy it on every casting!

From experience taking a mould of a pattern
a) highlights any imperfections
b) looses some clarity and quality

then when you cast out of the mould you
a) highlights any imperfections
b) looses some clarity and quality

10mins to clean up now, if you make 20 castings thats 200mins to clean up later.

Also make sure you have NO undercuts if anything you should include a little moulding taper or you will quickly damage even a flexible mould.

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 Posted: Fri Mar 27th, 2009 09:55 am
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Matt
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Dave

i used foam board but you can use anything that won't leak. i have heard the best thing to use is lego as this can be dismantled very easily when the silicone sets. i have also heard of people using clay or plastercine even that kids playdo stuff. the important thing is the master in the centre of the mould.

John brought up a good point about the master, if you are selling these you need to be spot on. you will always get the grumpy old git complaining that his window is 0.5mm out. what you can do is send a couple of members digital pictures for us to look at and pick up any imperfections. you can spend an age looking at a pick and not notice a problem, give that pic to another person and they say straight  away that a post or window is wonkey. if you want i will pm my email and you can send some pics.

 

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