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John Ahern Model Lighthouse. - Scratchbuilding. - More Practical Help - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Sun Feb 19th, 2012 03:38 pm
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col.stephens
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The last chapter of John Ahern's excellent book 'Miniature Building Construction' features a drawing of a small, attractive hexagonal lighthouse.  One of my ambitions is to eventually build a model railway incorporating a dock and, of course, it must include a lighthouse together with flashing light.  (I know that in real-life they don't flash but that's another matter).  During the recent cold weather I was looking for a small project which could be undertaken in the cosy confines of my warm lounge rather than troopsing off through the snow to my model railway shed.  I had a quick flick through Miniature Building Construction and quickly made a decision to have a go at this building.

I decided to make this building in card in 4mm scale and using Scalescenes papers.  I made this model in 7mm scale many years ago and it currently resides on a shelf in my model railway shed.  Unfortunately, it still requires windows but my interests have moved back to 4mm scale so it is destined to remain unfinished.  Still, to the current model.

I began the process by drawing the Base Layers, John Wiffen style only not as good as he, on plain paper.  This was copied on my home printer/copier and the copies were used.  The master was put away for safety.

 




Next, I fixed the six walls and base to 2mm greyboard using a glue-stick and similarly fixed the roof to 1mm card.  When dry, the parts were carefully cut out.

 




The next stage was to cover the walls using Scalescenes TX49 - Dressed Stone, applied using glue-stick.  Lintels were applied and window sills were cut from 1mm card covered in plain paper from the Dressed Stone sheet.




I have given the walls a couple of coats of Artists' Fixative spray and that's the progress to date.  I'm inclined to fit the windows next as when the walls are assembled around the base, access to their rear will be severly restricted. 

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 Posted: Sun Feb 19th, 2012 08:22 pm
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col.stephens
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Windows started today.  I used some .20" x .30" Evergreen styrene strip to make the window frame.  For the window panes I had to hand a packet of Scene-Setters Glazing Bars 3x4mm, which are produced by Freestone Model Accessories.  Basically, the glazing bars are a white grid printed onto a clear acetate sheet which you cut to size to fit the window.  The grids come in different sizes to suit larger or smaller window panes.  Brilliant idea.  I attached the glazing bars using Microscale Micro Kristal Klear. This is the stuff which you can use to make loco windows by dragging it accross the opening with a cocktail stick and it dries clear.  Well it's also a plastic adhesive according to the bottle. Unlike Mek-pak etc., it doesn't stain the 'window glass'.




The Promarker was borrowed from the wife's card-making desk to colour the edges of 1mm card strips which were fixed to the rear of the window to give the impression of some thickness to the wall.  I am using Roket Card Glue during construction

as it gives a very fast bond.  Below is a close-up of the finished window, only three more to do...





Terry

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 Posted: Sun Feb 19th, 2012 08:33 pm
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MaxSouthOz
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Looking gooood, Terry.  :thumbs    Can you show us a shot of where you used the marker, please?   That's a clever idea.



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 Posted: Sun Feb 19th, 2012 08:37 pm
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First time I have come across those glazing bars Terry, great idea. Just wish I had known about them years ago.



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 Posted: Sun Feb 19th, 2012 09:00 pm
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col.stephens
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Thank you Max.  This photo shows another shot of the rear from an angle.  You can just make out the edge of the window surround coloured with light grey Promarker.




Robert, I have just checked with Freestone Model Accessories' website and the glazing bars are still available as follows:

Glazing Bars Sheets (All scales):

SSGL01: Leaded (grey) 1.3 x 2mm rectangle: £1.50

SSGL02: Leaded (grey) 0.9mm 45° diameter: £1.50

SSGW21: White 2 x 2mm rectangle: £1.50

SSGW23: White 2 x 3mm rectangle: o/o/p

SSGW32: White 3 x 4mm rectangle: £1.50

SSGW42: White 4 x 5.5mm rectangle: £1.50

SSGW46: White 5 x 7mm rectangle: o/o/p

SSGW53: White 7 x 10.5mm rectangle: £1.50

A great idea at a very reasonable price.

Terry

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 Posted: Sun Feb 19th, 2012 09:21 pm
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Ah, yes.  I was looking for black.  Thanks, Terry.



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 Posted: Mon Feb 20th, 2012 12:14 am
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Petermac
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A great looking model Terry with some "new items" to explore. :thumbs

Those window acetates are certainly worth putting into stock for future use.


If you're going to do much in the way of card modelling, I can thoroughly recommend one of these : http://www.finetip.co.uk/

No connection with the company just an extremely satisfied customer !!



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 Posted: Mon Feb 20th, 2012 07:29 am
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Robert wrote: First time I have come across those glazing bars Terry, great idea. Just wish I had known about them years ago.


What a good idea!

 

Quite a coprehensive list of potential windows covered there, very interesting, and nice neat work, too!

 

Doug


 

PS I'm intrigued by this...

 

The last chapter of John Ahern's excellent book 'Miniature Building Construction' features a drawing of a small, attractive hexagonal lighthouse

...my 1950 reprint does not ahave a lighthouse, what date is yours? If there are others to collect I had better get buying!

 

Doug



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 Posted: Mon Feb 20th, 2012 08:31 am
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Petermac
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Mine has the lighthouse Doug - "Seventh Impression - published 1977". 

Would you like to see how much it differs from your edition ?



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 Posted: Mon Feb 20th, 2012 12:35 pm
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That's a good idea, I'd better start Googling!

P'raps a mutual 'phone call and some page flicking?

Let me know when convenient to phone...evening?

Doug



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 Posted: Mon Feb 20th, 2012 03:42 pm
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Thanks for that link to the PVA applicator Peter. Definitely one for the Equipment Index.



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 Posted: Mon Feb 20th, 2012 05:35 pm
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col.stephens
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Thank you for your kind comments gentlemen and thank you Peter for the link to the fine-tip glue applicator.  My copy of Miniature Building Construction dates from 1969 (3rd Impression) it being previously published in 1950 and 1956.  I bought my paperback copy new for 12/6 together with Miniature Landscape Modelling (4th impression 1968) at 12/6.  I must have bought Miniature Locomotive Construction (5th impression) when republished in 1973 as it cost me £1.25p

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 Posted: Mon Feb 20th, 2012 09:28 pm
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col.stephens
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The remaining three windows were completed this evening. I realized that I will have to insert the door too as that will also be hard to get at once the walls are located around the base. A job for tomorrow I think.

Terry.



Note: The banana-shaped walls are down to the camera angle.

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 Posted: Mon Feb 20th, 2012 09:34 pm
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I've got one of those cameras, Terry.   A Sony Parallax . .   :mutley



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 Posted: Mon Feb 20th, 2012 09:40 pm
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Max, I just realized that the camera is probably fine, maybe the walls ARE banana-shaped!

Terry

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 Posted: Mon Feb 20th, 2012 10:47 pm
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"Parallax" walls maybe ......................:roll::roll::roll::roll:



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 Posted: Mon Feb 20th, 2012 10:57 pm
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Petermac wrote:
Mine has the lighthouse Doug - "Seventh Impression - published 1977". 

Would you like to see how much it differs from your edition ?

My copy of1969 has the lighthouse. Chapter XVI, page 144. The chapter is only 2 pages.



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 Posted: Mon Feb 20th, 2012 11:52 pm
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:mutley   You could be right, Terry.

I find I get a better result if I get back a bit from the subject and then crop the edges.

Just a thought.



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 Posted: Tue Feb 21st, 2012 04:06 pm
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Lovely job so far Terry.The sections of the lighthouse already look very realistic.Its going to look great when finished!

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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 Posted: Tue Feb 21st, 2012 06:32 pm
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col.stephens
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Thank you John.  Very kind.

Terry

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 Posted: Tue Feb 21st, 2012 08:57 pm
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col.stephens wrote: Max, I just realized that the camera is probably fine, maybe the walls ARE banana-shaped!

Terry


Its got to be the camera lens because the cutting board grid is distorted as well!! Perhaps just too close?

Anyway, it is looking great Terry. I shall be following your progress with great interest.

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Geoff R wrote:  Its got to be the camera lens because the cutting board grid is distorted as well!! Perhaps just too close?

 


Beat me to it, Geoff! Now with the advent of the LED we'll no doubt see a flashing [or occulting] light too!

More, please!

 

Doug



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 Posted: Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 06:52 pm
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col.stephens
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Thank you for your kind words gentlemen.  Last night I made the door by scribing the planks on 1mm card using the back of a scalpel blade.  The card was then coloured  using blue and light grey Promarkers.  These markers are very useful in that they are double-ended with a point at one end and a wedge shape at the other.  I used the wedge-shaped ends to cover the door in broad strokes.  A door-handle was fashioned from brass wire.  Coloured pencils were lightly rubbed over the finished door to add some slight variation to the colour.  The door frame was made with plastic strip in the same way as the window frames.




Assembly of the structure is now under way with the walls being glued around the hexagonal floor.  Those corners will eventually be covered with overlays.






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 Posted: Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 07:10 pm
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col.stephens
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Doug,

         In reply to your posting regarding a flashing light.  I have had this little electrical gadget tucked away in a drawer for some time just waiting for the opportunity to use it.  At last, the moment has arrived!




Harbor? Are you sure? Here is a copy of the blurb:

Lighthouse and buoy simulator



This little board is very easy to connect up.


Just 7 screw terminals, 2 the Power, 3 to the Red And Green Leds 2 off each Supplied and 2 to Power.


The red and Green Led’s are put in Model Buoy’s at the harbour entrance and the Lamp (bulb) is fitted in the Lighthouse.


When power is applied the Led’s will flash and the lamp will increase in brightness till then decrease in brightness to simulate a lighthouse.



Sounds good doesn't it?


Terry

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 Posted: Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 08:59 pm
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Hi Terry, it's looking really good.
Only one point, as the walls are all sloping inwards, then the windows and now the door are also sloping.
I guess in reality the windows would work, although they might be difficult to slide up and down, but if the door is not hinged vertically, it would constantly swing open unless latched.
Hope that's not too picky,

Stu



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 Posted: Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 05:39 pm
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col.stephens
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Hello Stu, 
              Thanks for your comments.  A good point and one that I had completely overlooked!  Good job you noticed it now and not further into the project.  I had assumed that the windows would probably be of a type which would not be required to open and therefore the slight angle would not matter.  However, the door is another matter.  I have just removed the wall containing the door, all of ten seconds using a scalpel.  Tonight's job then is to rebuild the door so that it sits vertical.  Last night I test-fitted the flat roof and found that I had underestimated the width.  It should sit on top of the walls with a slight overhang on all sides.  A new part was quickly drawn and cut from 1mm card.

Terry

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 Posted: Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 09:49 pm
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Having just looked at the appropriate page, JA has a small sketch of the door from a side on view, showing a built out stone portico over the top edge.
Stu



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Stu,
     I knew that there was a small porch over the door, but the side-elevation drawing completely passed me by!  Thanks for that, I'm on to it.

Terry

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 Posted: Sun Feb 26th, 2012 03:06 pm
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Update on the lighthouse.  Having removed the wall panel containing the door, I decided to replace that section as there was a small mark on the stonework which was bugging me.  All walls have been fixed in place and the vertical door with portico is now in place too.






The lower, outer walls will follow next.  Regarding the lens to surround the lamp.  I had intended to buy some small clear buttons and stick them on top of each other as shown in Miniature Building Construction.  That would involve the hassle of trying to drill a suitable clearance hole for the 4mm dia. LED.  However, I accompanied my wife to a craft-fair yesterday and thought I might obtain the said buttons there.  To my delight, on entering the show we immediately came across a stall selling all manner of beads.  My wife instantly picked up a clear bead, cut like a diamond, complete with a 5mm hole through the centre.  "Is this any good?" she asked.  "Too bloody true" thought I and immediately splashed out the 30p to secure it, plus two spares. (You never know when the lighthouse bug might strike again!) 
I know that they are not strictly prototypical, but I think they will serve the purpose nicely.  The blue thing might look like a small measuring spoon that came in a packet of something or other, but it is, in fact, the dome which will sit atop the model. I tend to keep things like this just in case they come in handy.

On the general subject of modelling buildings in card, I picked-up two booklets a short while ago, 'Buildings in Miniature' by the famous G. Iliffe Stokes (no publication date, but an advert says the Railway Modeller costs 2 shillings)  and 'Modelling Buildings' by Malcolm J. Smith of Pendon (published 2003). 


Both very useful and a good read.

Terry

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 Posted: Sun Feb 26th, 2012 03:56 pm
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Looking really good Terry.



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Thank you Stu.

Regards,

Terry

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 Posted: Sun Feb 26th, 2012 04:52 pm
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The alteration to that door makes all the difference Terry. Very neat too.



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 Posted: Sun Feb 26th, 2012 05:55 pm
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Thank you Bob.  Very kind.

Terry

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 Posted: Sun Feb 26th, 2012 09:52 pm
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Terry,
I think that the clear bead will work perfectly. In fact it's so good, I'm going to look for one myself for my lighthouse.

Thanks for the idea!

Wayne



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Thanks Wayne.  Once installed over the lamp (LED) it should look good.  Out of interest I once visited the Science Museum in London to see if there was any information available as to how a lighthouse worked.  Imagine my surprise when, on an upper floor of the museum, I came across an actual lighthouse lamp with huge revolving lens. All my questions were answered 'in one fell swoop' to quote Hamlet. I must visit the museum again to see if the exhibit is still there.

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 Posted: Mon Feb 27th, 2012 08:59 pm
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Looking forward to how you apply the overlays Terry, as they a bit tricky on Metcalfe kits.



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col.stephens wrote: Thanks Wayne.  Once installed over the lamp (LED) it should look good.  Out of interest I once visited the Science Museum in London to see if there was any information available as to how a lighthouse worked.  Imagine my surprise when, on an upper floor of the museum, I came across an actual lighthouse lamp with huge revolving lens. All my questions were answered 'in one fell swoop' to quote Hamlet. I must visit the museum again to see if the exhibit is still there.

If I am not mistaken, the revolving elements float in a bath of mercury, a virtually friction-free thrust bearing, as it were. It allows the prisms to be rotated by the effort of a weighted pulley, much as the mechanism of a long-case clock is driven by the 'fir-cone' weights one sees hanging in front of the pendulum.

 

Mr Smeaton's ye'r very man for lighthouses!

 

Doug



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ddolfelin
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Very interesting read, Terry.

Some echoes of a Windmill I scratch built in plastic (there's probably a pic on my website).
Always eager to learn - I haven't made a lighthouse yet.
Searching through my 'bead' box I see there are some which might do for lamps.

Look forward to more inspiration, thanks.



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Thank you gents.

Sparky - Just finishing the lower outer overlays.  Picture to follow soon.

Doug - Don't ask me, I haven't a clue.  I must get to the Science Museum again and have a good look.

Peter - This model does look a lot like your windmill.  Coincidentally, I have been considering over the last few days whether a windmill might make a good future project in card, much as this lighthouse.

Terry

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I would imagine there is a bit more work in building a windmill terry, what with sails and all. Make a great addition to the layout if you can site it somewhere.:thumbs



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Reg,

       Very true. It would require a bit of research too as , like lighthouses, I know very little about them.

Terry

 

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There are a number of variant base shapes but the truth is that, for the older types, there wasn't a kind of 'windmill shop' so appearance changed within narrow areas.
Local artisans would have put their own interpretation on the build.
For the tower, it would be much as your lighthouse, although I have made a vertical base on mine.
It needs to be tall enough so that the sails don't look out of proportion.
I found that preserved windmills don't have the canvas attached to the timber framing (for obvious reasons).
As you are working, you will find that the mechanics almost re-invent themselves.
Copper on the roof of the revolve, stay bar to stop the thing in position, clearance at the door to prevent decapitation etc.

Plenty of reference on Google Images.



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ddolfelin wrote:  clearance at the door to prevent decapitation etc.


 

Windy Miller never had that, just good timing...



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Very true, Stu.
One of my favourite programmes.

Couldn't find much on my website so here are a couple of screenshots from my library.
Excuse quality.





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Thanks Peter.  Lots of food for thought there.

Back to the lighthouse... I have now fixed in place the lower outer walls., and what fun we had!  Every lower wall had to be chamfered on the inside at both ends and had to match its immediate neighbours on both ends, all of which slope inwards towards the top.  I have invented a whole dictionary of new swear words in the process. Nevertheless, we seem to have arrived at some reasonable state of success.  The upper outer walls will follow next.

Terry



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Correction, there's a lower plinth to go around the outer walls first.

Terry

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Very good work, Terry.



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Terry, I know how difficult it can be to get everything aligned as you go around the perimeter of anything, let alone something tapered.

If you need some NEW words, let me know, I'll share some of mine! :mutley

All your work is paying off Terry, it is looking super.

Be sure and discuss all your issues in this build, as I also, have a lighthouse coming up in the near future.

Thanks,
Wayne



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Thank you Peter and Wayne. Talking of issues, there are one or two small gaps around the model which would benefit from being filled in some way.  As this is the first scratchbuilt card model which I have made for many years, I am slightly at a loss as what to use as a filler.  I have some Squadron Products 'White Putty' but am not sure whether it will stain the surrounding printed stonework. 

So, fellow modellers, what would you use as a filler? (Or maybe your modelling is more accurate than mine!)

Terry

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Doug uses ivy and other greenery... :lol:



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Looks like the vertical joins will take more card strips.
I believe that the corners are then covered in extra stone paper cut around the 'stones'.
Never used card but it sounds logical.



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Peter, those vertical joints will be covered with 'upper, outer walls' in due course which will hide them nicely.  Well, that's the plan!

Terry

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If you are refering to the vertical gaps between the upright sections, cover  with a strip of thin paper, folded to a nice sharp egde/corner, narrower than the covering strips and apply carefully so as not to crumple them using Prit stick. When the glue is dry, paint generously with shellac and allow to dry. The covering strip will become hard enough to support stone covering strips with a sharp fold.

For very small [10/1000th"] gaps I mix Prit Stick with scraped pastel of a toning colour and apply with a spatula carved from a matchstick.

 

I hope that helps!

 

 

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Thanks Doug.  I wasn't actually referring to those vertical gaps but to one or two small spaces which would benefit from filling.

Terry

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Doug mentioned using shellac.  From where does one obtain this?

I've spent this afternoon fixing the lower plinth in place. This job was similar to the larger plinth in that each wall had to be chamfered at each end.  Like the larger plinth you have to remember to take the stone paper over the top edge.  There will be a small step below the door eventually but I'll fix that later as it would be a bit vulnerable at this stage.  Someone please remind me if I forget!



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Button polish is almost the same as home made shellac Terry. The dry flakes of shellac are not too easy to come by nowadays but button polish should be available in any decent DIY store.



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Robert wrote: Button polish is almost the same as home made shellac Terry. The dry flakes of shellac are not too easy to come by nowadays but button polish should be available in any decent DIY store.

 

 

He's right, you know...[but he's been doing it at least 30 years longer than me.....] Tee-hee! As button polish itself is getting hard to find, you may have more luck in finding

1.  White knotting [sold at any good decorators centre, used to seal knots in resinous wood so that the natural turpentine doesn't disolve and bleed through oil-based paints. Did you know you should only apply it to one side of a board that is finished on two faces, like a shutter, screen or flap? If you seal both sides, it'll pop out somewhere! In the 'Best work' the face side is filled with a diamond shaped insert, and the other sealed with knotting.]

2.  White French polish. Blackfriars brand used to sell it in little 1/4pt bottles, especially for box-makers, instrument case-makers, etc.

Poop-poop!

 

Doug



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For those in the UK who would like dry flakes try here : http://www.jpennyltd.co.uk/shopping/pgm-more_information.php?id=37

For those in Australia who would like dry flakes try here : http://shop.clayprincess.com.au/eshop/product_info.php?products_id=1074

Both of the above links are in our permanent Equipment Index by the way.



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Thank you chaps, very informative.

Terry

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The time has arrived to cover those long vertical joins.  I decided to do it 'Scalescenes' style whereby a strip of card is scored down the centre-line and covered with the printed stone paper, which is wrapped around the edges and stuck to the rear of the strip.  The strip is then folded along the score and is then glued in position on the model.  As I didn't want the upright corner walls to be too thick, I cut some thin card into 10mm strips and scored down the centre-line.  Two pieces of the card strip were then laminated together using a glue stick to produce this:




The edges were trimmed and the dressed stone paper was applied. When the strip was applied to the model it became apparent that the stone courses would never line up with those courses on the walls as the corner strips are inclined inwards, and, of course, the stone courses are running slightly downwards as a result . So back to the drawing-board!  On the edge of the Scalescenes Dressed Stone sheet I found some plain strips of the appropriate colour, and being one for the easy life, I decided to cover the corner strips with this.  Actually, I don't think it looks too bad. If necessary, it should be possible to draw the stone courses onto the corners.  So, time to press on and cover the other five upright joins.

Terry



 

 

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Terry, sorry to be a 'smart-ar%e' with the advantage of hindsight but I had thought you would use individual pieces of stone cut in a very slight 'chevron' shape over a narrow cover strip. If you were mindful of not crushing them into the gap then the cover strip would not be needed. The individual stones would be applied in a staggered effect to imitate a bond. Is it too late for that now?


Doug



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Now why didn't I think of that? Unfortunately, the two corners done so far are stuck tight.  However, I have drawn the courses lightly with a pencil and then 'knocked them back' a bit with an eraser.  Total time about five minutes.  Here's the result:






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That's a result!  :thumbs:thumbs:thumbs

Doug



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dooferdog wrote: That's a result!  :thumbs:thumbs:thumbs

Doug

For sure - makes it look :thumbs indeed.



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I'd say that looks just fine, in fact the whole thing almost looks like a marble stone from this side of the screen!

keep up the good work Terry!

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Thank you gentlemen.  As I am making this model 'on the hoof' with no pre-planning, I am having to make it up as I go along.  I'm bound to come a cropper sooner or later!

Terry

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Looks just great Terry:thumbs



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Thanks Reg.  All of the corner walls and the small walls at the top of each side have now been added.  In order that the top walls were the same thickness as the corner walls, these too were formed of two pieces of thin card laminated together and covered with the stone paper.  The doorstep is to be added next after which the roof will be added.




 

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...it's starting to look 'heavy', so it must be right, Terry!

 

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Thanks Doug, it does have a certain 'stability' about it.  Oh damn, it's just blown off my desk!  Yesterday I bought some shellac varnish posing as French Polish.  This afternoon I will cut out the roof and give it a coat of shellac to seal it and harden it up a bit to prevent the corners from fraying.

Terry

 

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col.stephens wrote: .......................................... Yesterday I bought some shellac varnish posing as French Polish.  This afternoon I will cut out the roof and give it a coat of shellac to seal it and harden it up a bit to prevent the corners from fraying.

Terry

 

Light oak or teak Terry ? :roll::roll::roll::lol::lol:

It's looking really good.  Have you finally sorted the light ?



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Thanks Peter. There is a picture of the light 'gizzmo' in my posting of Feb. 22nd. The LED fits nicely into the 'diamond cut' bead shown in my posting of Feb. 26th.  I am considering attaching the bead, sorry 'lens', onto one of these, painted a suitable colour, of course: 


These are the spools around which your dental tape or floss are wound.  I always force open the empty container to retrieve these just in case they might come in useful for a modelling project.  One of these spools will lift the lens up to clear a low wall which surrounds the 'lamp room'(?)  That's the idea anyway.  I'm always open to suggestions.

Terry

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The roof has been cut from some nice hard card.  I don't know where this card came from but it appears to have a darker card in the centre, faced on both sides with a hard white card.  I have attached a smaller hexagon to the underside which will ensure a snugly fit into the top of the structure.  The hole is for the wiring to pass through to the lamp.


 

The roof fits thus:


I'm now off to the shed to give the roof a coat of shellac.  The light area beneath the door was as a result of an aborted attempt to fit the step.  This will disappear when the step is fixed in place.

Terry

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The step has been fixed in place, it being two pieces of card laminated together and covered with paper from the dressed stone sheet. The roof has been painted with shellac and painted.  I think that the roof colour is a bit on the dark side so I am going to mix more paint to match the stonework and re-apply with an airbrush.  The roof is not glued in place yet. So, this is how it looks at present:


 

I have also given the structure another spray of Artists' Fixative pending me buying a suitable matt varnish for waterproofing purposes.  On the drawing of this lighthouse in Miniature Building Construction, it shows a cornice(?) on the underside of this lower roof.  As it happens I appear to have some plastic strip of just the right shape:


This is currently being cut to length and fixed in position.  More angled corners to be cut and mitred together!  Re-painting the roof will have the added advantage that the cornice will be sprayed the same colour as the roof. Onwards and upwards!

Terry

 

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Looking great Terry, keep up the good work!

I really don't see anything wrong with the color of the roof, maybe it's my screen?

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Agreed.
Fascinating work.



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Thank you gentlemen.

Terry

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As a card enthusiast I am really enjoying this Terry. Many thanks.



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Thank you Bob.  As I go along I am rediscovering the joys of modelling in card.  Building and posting in 'real time' does give one the impetus to get on with the model.  With this particular project I am basically just working my way up from the base, tackling each problem as it arises. I shall probably come gloriously unstuck in 'real time' soon!

Terry

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Here is tonight's bit of modelling.  The cornice is in the process of being cut to length, with corners mitred, and fixed in place using solvent, on the underside of the roof.  Not truly John Ahern style using a plastic moulding, but I suspect he would have used it had it been available to him instead of stripwood.  Well, that's my theory anyway.  Why make life hard for yourself?




In a surprisingly short period of time, I found that I had completed the cornice, thus:




Here is the completed (lower) roof with cornice in place atop the walls.  The roof is not fixed in place as there is some painting required.  The cornice is looking rather shiny at present.




Terry.

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Terry, I especially like the way you have managed to line up the paper at the joins.
Not an easy thing to do with those angles.



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Thanks Peter.  Actually, if you read back a bit you will see that I cheated!  The joins on the main walls are pencil lines, although the walls at the base have been cut independently and lined-up.

Terry

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The lower roof has now been airbrushed to a slightly lighter shade.  Whilst waiting for it to dry I decided to get on and build the small wall which sits on top of the roof and encloses what I shall call the lamp room.  Those of you with a copy of Miniature Building Construction can refer to the appropriate drawing for clarification. Everyone else, bear with me, all will be revealed eventually.  Like the rest of the structure, this low wall is hexagonal.  I took measurements from the drawing and, using my schoolboy geometry, and using a compass, plotted a hexagon of the right size on paper.  I used this line drawing as a plan, around which I built the walls.  Each individual wall is made from 2mm greyboard, chamfered at both ends and covered in dressed stone paper.  




Below is the completed wall ready to be fixed to the lower roof (although those gaps might need filling first).

Terry


 

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OMG - seeing those arcs takes me back to my old desk Terry ...........:roll::roll::roll:

I'd have to dig out my books to remember how to do it so you're one up on me !!!  What IS the Log of 360 ? :lol::lol::lol:



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2.5563025



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:mutley:mutley:mutley:mutley

Many thanks DD - saves me searching for my old log tables ........................



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Peter,

          Those arcs are the extent of my knowledge!  I should have paid more attention in class!

Terry

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The resprayed lower roof has now been glued in position.  Roket card glue was thinly smeared around the top of the walls to prevent it running down the walls when the roof was pushed into place.  This glue is very thin and runny so I tend to apply it on the end of a cocktail stick (eat the cherry first!).  The wall of the 'lamp room' has been carefully glued in place on top of the roof after carefully measuring and drawing small location 'dots' with a pencil as an aid.


 


According to the drawing in Miniature Building Construction, there is a low plinth around this wall so that will be next on the agenda.  After that I feel inclined to fit the lamp and lens before giving some thought as to how I am going to tackle the windows of the six-sided 'lamp room'.  Oh well, it's all a learning exercise, as they say.

Terry

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Well Terry, as for the learning exercise, I can (almost) claim that just reading your thread. I think you have done an excellent job (so far).

I will most definitely be watching how you tackle that window!

Wayne

PS: That "so far" was not trying to SCARE you on that window. :shock: :lol:



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A lovely model in the making that's for sure.



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It's looking really good Terry. :thumbs

Regarding your "runny" Rocket glue, have a look at this :  http://www.finetip.co.uk/

I have nothing to do with the company but, since I bought mine, I've never considered using anything else.  It's such a simple gadget and yet so effective.  Aren't all "simple" ideas usually brilliant ?



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Thank you gentlemen, very kind of you.

Peter, thank you for the link.  I am going to order one now.  Whilst the Roket (their spelling, not mine) glue is very good for almost instant 'grab', being so runny I am losing a lot of it down the side of the bottle. At nearly £5 for a very small bottle, you can't afford to waste it.

Terry

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I'll nearly guarantee you won't regret it Terry. :thumbs

Forget your £5 per bottle - it just uses cheap PVA wood glue.  That works out at about £1 per East Coast Main Line !!!! ;-)



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I've finally ordered mine as well, Peter.  :oops:



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I meant to buy that when you first mentioned it Peter but I forgot at the time so I have sent off an order this evening. The gadget plus two pins as I'm bound to lose one.



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MaxSouthOz wrote: I've finally ordered mine as well, Peter.  :oops:

and that makes two of us.        I do remember about this before but like Max, slack blokes we were :roll:



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Now hang on there - I need to ask them about commission before all these orders flood in ....................;-)

Anyone who models in card should definitely have one.  I bought one as a pressie for my pal in UK who builds the most amazing card models (up alongside Doug I'd say) - he's in his late 70's and has modelled for the last 40 years.  He says he wouldn't be without it and wonders how he ever managed before.



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I bought one as well on the strength of Peters suggestion!

I've also got 'Anitas Tacky Glue' (Google it - I haven't time to do a link) This also has a fine-tip, and can be re-filled. (Cheap, too)

Shaun.

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I beat you all and, therefore, claim the prize.  I ordered two (one for the wife), and two pins.

Terry

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The narrow plinth around the 'lamp room' wall was made and applied in one piece.  It is two 3mm wide strips of thin card laminated together and covered in dressed stone paper.  I held it against each side in turn and put pencil marks at each corner which were then scribed on the back with a scalpel blade.  Each corner was bent and the strip was stuck in place starting with the face over the door, with the join at one of the rear corners...




The next stage will be to make something which purports to represent the lamp and lens.  If you remember, I thought that I might use the plastic roller from inside a discarded dental tape box.  It looked a bit crude with the lens (clear diamond cut bead) sitting on top, so the search was on for a round disc on which to seat the lens.   In my drawer of bits and bobs I came up with this:




The smaller of these flanges is just the right size.




 So, now we have these:




Which have been superglued together to give us this:




All very crude, but when painted, and with the lens seated on top, it should give the representation of something inside the lighthouse.  Here are the electrics showing the LED which will be fixed inside the lens:


 

Question: Can I permanently seal the LED inside the lighthouse, or will I require access to it at some later date, i.e. does an LED ever need replacing?

Terry

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If you have the voltage correct, especially via a regulator, then it should last as long as you are walking on Earth.
From Wikipedia:
Solid state devices such as LEDs are subject to very limited wear and tear if operated at low currents and at low temperatures. Many of the LEDs made in the 1970s and 1980s are still in service today. Typical lifetimes quoted are 25,000 to 100,000 hours, but heat and current settings can extend or shorten this time significantly.



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Terry, the LED should last for ever provided that it is being powered within its specification, which I guess is the case given you have a specific drive board. Just make sure that you keep it connected to the electronics at all times.

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Sol & Geoff, thank you for your replies.  Unfortunately, I can find no reference to the correct voltage to use, either on the circuit board or from the seller's website.  I emailed him a few days ago but have not had a reply as yet.  I tried it on 12v DC and it appeared to flash on and off perfectly. Is there any way of ascertaining the correct voltage from looking at it?  Geoff, I don't quite understand your comment about keeping it connected to the electronics at all times.  Can you explain please?

Terry

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Hi Terry. The reason for suggesting you should keep it connected is to prevent you from accidentally connecting it directly to a power supply. I cannot tell if there is a series resistor inside the insulation surrounding the bottom of the LED itself, but safest to presume there is NOT.

Therefore the electronic board is providing the safe current for the LED by having a series resistor before the connection for the LED.

When you apply power to the circuit board, the chip (a 555 timer probably) is powered up and provides the on/off current feed through to the LED connection.

If it worked on 12v, then 12v will probably be fine, but maybe worth checking a few things.

Looking at the photo, I think that the round black object towards the right hand end is a bridge rectifier which means that it should work from an AC power source as well. The small black object just below the chip may well be a voltage stabiliser limiting the supply to the chip and LED to 12v or maybe even as low as 5v. The most important thing for the LED is actually the current flowing through it, not the voltage applied to the board.

Can you read the identification number on the chip? Also can you see what voltage rating is written on the capacitors? Do you know what the three way connector on the left is meant to be used for?

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I have just gone back to your post of Feb 22nd and I think that says the lighthouse light on the grey lead is a BULB, and not a LED. In which case it can blow and need replacing. I see that the 3 way connector is for harbour buoy lights.

 

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Geoff, the capacitators (I assume they are the two round things with siver tops) show 16v. There is nothing on the chip (which I assume is the grey rectangular thing with eight terminals threon).  I have compared the 'bulb' with the other LEDs in the packet and it looks exactly the same.

Terry

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And here's the completed lens unit:




It has dawned on me that there should be the top of a staircase protruding into the 'lamp room'.  I'll have to give that some thought.  Also, I have got to decide how to get the lamp which is 3mm in diameter, to stay inside the lens which has a hole 5mm in diameter.  Ideas welcome.

Terry

 

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As a bodge up merchant I would suggest bluetack. Our apartment is mostly held up with the stuff.



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I must also be a "Bodgit & Scarper"  merchant too Bob - that's exactly what I was going to suggest then your post came onto the screen as I scrolled down .....................;-)



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Bob and Peter.  Interestingly, you are the second and third persons to suggest Bluetack, the first being my wife.   Bluetack it is then.

Terry

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A good temporary solution but I'd go for something more permanent.
Rolled paper and pva?



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Peter,

         Actually that idea did occur to me this morning before I got sucked into the Bluetack debate.  Currently (no pun intended), I am still trying to ascertain if I have got an LED or a bulb so I can decide whether the fixing should be permanent.  I think it's an LED.  I have emailed the seller again via Jersey Model Railway Club but have not had a reply as yet.

Terry

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Blue tac dries out and loses it's stickyness over time - I'd go with Dd's suggestion, maybe an open ended cone of stiff card ?

To work out if it's an LED, use a 1.5v battery and connect the two wires both ways round. If it lights both ways, it's a bulb, if only one, it's an LED.

Stu



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Good idea Stu, thanks.

Terry

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Also, I'd 'stick' the cone to the LED rather than the inside of the holder.



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When it came to actually trying to fit the LED inside the lens, I realised that it would not be attached to the inside of the lens, but to the base, you know the roller from the dental tape box as shown previously. This has an inside diameter of 9mm.  So, basically, I was trying to glue something the width of a bamboo stick to the inside of the Royal Albert Hall!  This is how I did it:




I cut two pieces of plastic tube of differing diameters, one of which would just fit inside the other. I glued the larger diameter tube to the inside of the lamp base.  The LED was glued to the inside of the smaller diameter tube which was then inserted inside the larger diameter tube.  The smaller tube was slid up and down inside the larger tube to get the LED at the correct height, and then the two tubes were glued together.  The next step is to feed the wires through the small hole in the lower roof and glue the whole lamp assembly in place. 

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That's a result Terry. :thumbs

Let's hope it is an LED and not a bulb...................................;-)



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The lens unit has now been stuck in place and the wires fed through the building to protrude at the bottom.  I'll test the lamp at this stage.

Terry




 

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Terry,
I think this is looking great! Can't wait to see it all lit up.

While I have never actually seen the lights in a lighthouse, I was thinking they would be taller. Am I right or wrong?

If they are taller could you stack another lens on top?

Please do not take this the wrong way Terry, it's just an observation.

Wayne



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Wayne, thanks for your comments.  I think it would be possible to fix another lens on top if necessary.  Currently, it stands about twenty three millimetres high from the base of the lamp housing.  The distance to the underside of the top roof will only be thirty millimetres so it should sit quite high. My thoughts are now turning to how I am going to produce the rather large windows.

Can someone advise me please as to whether it is possible to upload a short video to this forum?

Terry 

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Thank you Martin.

Terry

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The lamp, which I have decided is definately an LED, has been tested and all is well.  I have pondered over how to make the six rather large windows and have decided to go with the self-adhesive label method, previously described on this forum by far better modellers than I.  The windows have been drawn in pencil on the labels and fixed to the clear glazing before cutting around the panes and lifting out.  I sealed the outer edges of the frames with Micro Kristal Klear to prevent them from lifting.




The blue is the backing plastic yet to be removed.  Structurally, the windows on the model will support the roof so I needed the glazing to be quite thick. (I have been studying online photos of lighthouses and have seen roofs atop some very slender windowframes with no other apparent means of support.  (Maybe some lighthouse engineer out there might explain to us how it's done).  Fortunately, I have in stock some 0.5mm glazing material called Vivak which comes with thin protective plastic on both sides so it is free of scratches.  The only problem is that the windows have to be joined together and the usual solvents won't stick this stuff.  Micro Kristal Klear has been tried and also found wanting.  I am currently testing Revell Contacta Liquid Glue and early signs are that it isn't up to the job either.  Tomorrow I'll dig out the UHU and possibly give superglue a try, although previous experience has taught me that it tends to fog clear glazing material.  The manufacurer's website didn't throw any light on how to stick this stuff either.  I envisage a week of experimentation ahead!

Update:  I checked the test piece of window material the morning after writing the above and found that the Revell Contacta has done the job admirably with a very firm join.  I have established that the Vivak is 'extruded copolyester'.  Doesn't mean anything to me, I just wanted a few windows!


Update to the previous update:  The windows fell apart today!  Now trying a solvent called Daywat which is actually Butanone, a particularly nasty chemical but with which I have had success in the past.  It has never done me any harm.  Mind you, all of my hair has fallen out, as well as my teeth, and I can't breathe properly now that I have only one lung, and I have to wear binoculars to do my modelling.  Still, mustn't grumble!


Terry    


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I am forging ahead with the windows, trusting in the Butanone.  I have also drawn and cut out the hexagonal upper roof, as per the lower roof previously, as well as a smaller hexagon to fit under the roof to locate it to the tops of the windows.  These have been glued together and have reveived a coat of shellac (French polish).  A look at the progress with the windows which have been glued together at the edges, but not attached to the lower roof:





Terry

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Those windows are looking excellent, Terry. I admire your determination to find a way of fixing them together. It has clearly worked well now. As to how the roof is held on for the prototype, I wonder if there is a strong central support in the form of bars surrounding the rotating lamp mechanism? There might even be a pivot above the lamp?

 

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Thanks Geoff.  As regards supporting the roof, I have looked at a number of photos on the internet and there appears to be no support in any of the pictures.  I'm beginning to think that the windowframes, many of which are made from metal, must be load-bearing.

As described earlier, here is the roof from the underside:




And in place atop the windows.  It's not glued yet as it has to be painted:




The bottom of the windowframes are sitting slightly too low so I will fix a thin strip of something beneath the windows, which fit behind the walls and sit on the top of the lower roof.  I think at this stage I should also consider making a representaion of the top of the stairs which will be visible inside.

Terry

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Looks great Terry and as Geoff said, those windows are a masterpiece. :thumbs



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Thank you Peter, very kind.  I was amazed as to how fast one can work using the self-adhesive label technique.  After the frames were drawn on the labels, cut out and stuck to the clear plastic, it took only about three or four minutes to produce each window.  When I think about all the wasted time in the past messing about with plastic strip and then ending up with smeared windows due to the solvent.  This technique is certainly one which I will use in the future.  Thanks due to Doug for the suggestion.

Terry

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The upper roof has now been painted and fixed to the top of the windows using Micro Kristal Klear.  A thin bead was spread around the outer edge of the smaller hexagon (see photo of 2nd April) which engages with the window top edges.  The Kristal Klear dries clear and I am hoping that it will be sufficient to bond the windows to the card roof.  My intention is to leave the roof and window unit unattached from the rest of the building in order that it may be removed, if necessary, to gain access to the lamp.   The upper roof appears a shade darker than the lower roof but I am not too concerned as the dome will cover most of it.

Terry



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It continues to look more and more impressive, Terry, the closer you get to completion.

One thing though - you have been teasing us with just a glimpse of another model in a show case just to the right of where you are taking your lighthouse photos. Any chance of seeing the entire thing?

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Yep, impressive is the right word OK. A beautiful model in the making. The mystery object appears to be rolling stock of some kind.



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Thank you Geoff and Bob.  I was wondering if anyone would mention the mystery item on the right of the photos.  Here it is:




It is Stephenson's Locomotion No.1  The model is an O Gauge static model by Bachmann to celebrate the 175th birthday (apparently) of the company.  The retail price is £129.95 and Hattons of Liverpool have been selling it for some time at £39.00  It comes complete with the display case.  It's a lovely model and a great bargain and I don't understand why nobody appears to want one.  Here's a link to the item on Hatton's website:

http://www.ehattons.com/stocklist/21/3/6/0/Bachmann_UK_O_Gauge_1_43rd_Scale_Steam_engines_locos/prodlist.aspx

Get yours while stocks last!

Terry

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It really is very nice, Terry.  Neat work.  :thumbs

The Rocket model really looks like a bargain.



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Thank you Max.

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Interesting work, I'm enjoying this. When it comes to weathering, the ladies have a white pencil for 'French Manicure', a sort of white semi-water-proof crayon that when damped and applied under the fingernail gives that white stripe effect. It makes lovely sea-gull-poo! Carefully sharpened you can also write on wagons etc...

Just a suggestion, but do try to look a bit butch when you go to Boots to buy one!

 

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Thanks Doug.  I can imagine the face of the sales assistant when I ask for a stick of 'seagull pooh'!

Terry

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They would spend the rest of the day looking for it around here.

Great work, Terry.



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Thanks for revealing "Rocket", Terry. It does look like a superb model.

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Thanks Peter and Geoff.  In my posting of Feb 26th, there was a photo of a plastic measuring spoon which will be used as the dome on top of the roof.  The handle has been cut off and the resulting lumps and bumps made good with a file and sandpaper.  I was going to use strips of styrene to make the beading on the dome, but decided instead to try strips self-adhesive label.  Unlike the plastic, the paper label strips bend with no resistance and stick in place immediately.  Total time to apply these about ninety seconds.  A coating of paint should help seal them in place.  After the photo was taken, I drilled a small hole through the top of the dome to accept the weather vane.  Off to the shed now to spray the dome.

Terry



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Inspired, Terry.   :thumbs



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Thank you Max, very kind.

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The domed roof, or cupola if that is the correct term, has been brush painted using Humbrol enamels.  It is supposed to represent copper when it turns that lovely green colour. Reference was made to a picture found on the internet.  It has been fixed in place using Revell 'Contacta' liquid glue, which seems to be adequate.








I have also lifted the windowframes slightly by fixing thin strips of styrene around the inside of the walls on the lower roof.  The windows now sit on these styrene strips.  The whole of the window/upper roof section now lifts off as a complete unit giving access to the inside.  Useful in the event that the lens (bead) decides to go walk-about. 

I am currently working on the weather vane.  I am going to deviate slightly from Ahern's drawing.  All will be revealed eventually.  I am also now giving serious thought to installing a representation of the stair-head in the 'lamp-room'.

Terry

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It just gets better and better and better. A boon to any layout.



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Thank you Bob, very kind.  A busy day today.  I decided to install a representation of the top of the stairway.  A top step was cut from 2mm Greyboard and covered in grey paper from the Scalescenes Dressed Stone sheet.  More steps were drawn flat on a piece of card and coloured with Pro-Marker pens and the top step was glued to the end.  A small piece of handrail was fabricated from brass wire and attached to the top step thus:


 

The staircase was stuck in place beside the lamp and is just visible in this picture:




As mentioned earlier, I decided to stray slightly from the Ahern drawing with regard to the weather vane.  The one shown on the drawing is not very impressive so I decided to enhance it a bit by making a small ship.  The hull was shaped from 60x60 thou plastic strip and the masts were small pieces of wire to which paper sails were attached.  The finished ship was painted with Humbrol enamel paint.




Unfortunately, I can't fathom how to include the four points of the compass as the letters would be extremely small, so it will be fitted as it is.




And finally, here is the finished lighthouse:




                                                                     THE END

 

Thanks to everyone for your encouragement and kind comments over the last few months. I'll see if I can post a video of the working lighthouse soon if I can get my head round You Tube.

Terry 

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It looks great, Terry.  My weather vane here has an arrow head on the North arm and nothing on the others - if that helps.

It really is lovely.  The stairs and the weather vane are the cream on the cake.




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Likewise Terry, very good indeed.



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Thank you gentlemen, much appreciated.

Terry

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A real credit for the forum Terry. Thanks a lot.



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Thank you Bob.  I have uploaded a short video to YouTube showing the lighhouse in operation.  Not the most exciting video in the world but it gives you the general idea. Here is the link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dnJ92MmBMKI&context=C455e2fdADvjVQa1PpcFPwva3H62mwiwdWOY-3vg68HS9Hx2y4rvw=

I would appreciate some instruction on how to embed a video into a forum.

Terry

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here goes . . .



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OK  Let's see if I can explain it . . .

{flash=720,565}http://www.youtube.com/v/dnJ92MmBMKI&{/flash}

Now, replace the { } brackets with these [ ]

If you change the YouTube link to the above, you'll have it.



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The wreckers will love you Terry :roll::roll:

A really great model and perfoms perfectly - even down to the fade up/fade down glow from the light rather than a simple on/off. :pathead:pathead



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The icing on the cake, that's for sure. Terrific.



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Thank you very much gentlemen and a special thanks to Max for 'embedding' the video here.

Terry

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Terry,
Now that is one heck of a build, one you should Be very proud of.

Great video too, but how did you get that LED to flash on and off? if you already answered that, please forgive me, as I must have missed it.

Wayne



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Great stuff, Terry.



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Lovely quality piece of work.Well done that man!

Cheers,John.B.:thumbs

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Thank you all very much.  Wayne, If you look at my posting of Wed. February 22nd on page 2, all will be revealed.

Terry

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A truly illuminating thread, I have very much enjoyed it, congratulations.

 

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Thank you Doug, very kind of you.

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