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Paper and card modelling-making tight, sharp wraps and folds. - Scratchbuilding. - More Practical Help - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Sat Mar 20th, 2010 06:57 pm
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Chubber
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Following a request to illustrate my method of folding and wrapping texture papers to give sharp

edges I have produced the following 'How to'. I apologise in advance for the number of pictures,

but I feel that is a lot better than me writing paragraphs of semi-intelligible waffle.

I will try to explain how I do three things which are essential to the succesful and convincing

construction of models such as the Scalescene series, where sharp, clean folds are needed to

give the impression of solidity to scraps of printed paper wrapped around bits of cardboard.

First, a 'brick' column, built up from multiple layers of 2mm card, then, probably the most difficult,

a texture sheet wrapped around a long strip of card to represent a typical capping strip or row

of stone slabs, and finally, a simple means of making a convincing slab of stone such as the flat

stone slabs placed on top of columns.


Two essential tools, a sandpaper 'plane' and a stiletto are easy to make or buy. Without these

you will be lucky to achieve the desired objective of square edged forms, tightlywrapped in a

clean 90 degree fold.  The sandpaper plane is just a covenient way of holding a strip of sandpaper

 at 90 degrees to the work surface. The piece of wood from which it is made MUST be square in

 section to start with.

[The cutting mat squares are at 1 cm spacing]

The stiletto can, at its simplest be a large darning needle. The important point to notice [pun intended]

is that the point is needle sharp, yet very smoothly formed. Dragged over your thumb-nail there

 should be no scratchy hook or roughness to the point. This I achieve by working it over

 1000 grit wet and dry paper. It is that important, because you will use it to score halfway

through printed texture papers without snagging them, even when damp from glue.





1.   Brick Column


Rule 1. No round edged former will ever wrap up to make a square edged component.

Rule 2. There is only Rule 1.




Rub all 4 sides to get a smooth square edged block. Then lightly sand off any raised rough corners.




Cut a piece of paper that wraps all round plus about 1/4"




Smear with stick-type adhesive and place the component on top, in the centre. Either prick

 two holes from the pattern the otherside to line up on or draw a guide line. Now, with the

stiletto gently scribe/score down the side of the work so as to rupture only the top surface

 layers. Too hard and you have cut it, too soft and the fold won't be crisp.




Fold this edge over.  Notice the sharp fold, and we haven't started to flatten it out yet?




Repeat this all round, pressing the first and second sides firmly against the cardboard, but

just lightly pressing down the 'closing' folds.



A wallpaper seam roller is perfect for the job of maintaining sharp corners.





Now you should have a wrapped up component, with three sides firmly pressed down, and an

overlapping side, just lightly stuck down together.





Now, on the overlapped side, cut down the length of the overlap, being sure to cut through

BOTH layers. This needs a very sharp, preferably new blade, or the paper, weakened by the

glue will tear and drag. Immediately after cutting through, peel back these layers, remove the

outer strip, pick off the inner strip and lay down the wrapped layers where they will

miraculously match perfectly. I have shown a straight edge in use, it isn't really necessary.

Roll all round and you should, with a little attention to details  have a near invisible joint,

 like that below.






Now the finishing touch. Burnish with your knife handle or similar dead smooth tool to create

 an even sharper edge. Anyone who has ever put an edge on a cabinet scraper will know

 exactly the way to do it!




With any luck you will have a convincing column of brickwork.



Tomorrow, God willing, I'll do the next part, wrapping a long thin strip component.


Doug








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In the land of the slap-dash and implausible, mediocrity is king
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 Posted: Sat Mar 20th, 2010 07:02 pm
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rector
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This is excellent, Doug. I'm even printing it out for my "How To..." file. :thumbs



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 Posted: Sat Mar 20th, 2010 07:05 pm
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Robert
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Another definite for the forum Index.



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Barchester
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 Posted: Sat Mar 20th, 2010 08:10 pm
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John Dew
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Thank you so much......thats very very helpful......much appreciated.

PS Thank you for the PM

Kind Regards

 



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 Posted: Sun Mar 21st, 2010 07:52 am
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Chubber
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2.  Wrapping long strips e.g. stone capping

There is very little difference in the technique used for long narrow strips except that with a

narrowstrip it is very easy to crush the component inside the paper, or, to deform or bend it

so that it dries crooked. 

 Here is a strip of 2mm card and a piece of home made stone slab paper.



To get the component centred more easily I prefer to have the card a little longer than the

 paper so it can be lined up in the centre by eye.





The paper strip should be fractionally smaller than the sum of the width of all 4 sides

because the paper will stretch when it is smeared with stick glue. Pose the card in the centre

of the generously glued paper.




Again, scribe down besude the card with the stiletto. For clarity I have not used my other

 hand holding the piece still, but it is necessary.



Repeat on the other side and fold up 90 degrees before rolling the two edges. If you don't

 have a seam roller [which I heartily recommend] then use your knife handle to lightly burnish

 both sides.



Now the awkward bit, scribe down alongside the card again on both remaining small flaps.

 For clarity, I have not shown the piece of 2" x 1" wood that I rest the back against to make

it easier.

Fold the flaps inwards after scribing and then burnish lightly all 4 edges.





Hopefully it should come out something like this.......





3.  Stone slabs or cap-stones


Many kits recommend cutting out an involved paper shape before folding it around a piece

of card and gluing it to the top of a column. Inevitably the small size of the component

makes it a difficult job and you can end up with a squidgy paper, glue and card sandwich.

I prefer to glue the card down with PVA on the back of a generously sized piece of paper,

allowing it to dry and then trimming and folding it up to cover the edges.





Start as always with a square, sharp edged block. In this case a double layer of 2 mm card

about 1" x 5/8", i.e. 4 mm thick.



Glue the component onto the reverse of the paper with PVA, and ensure that no excess

glue is allowed to remain around the edges.




Now here is the crafty bit...........

Using the same card as the block, glue up a piece 4" or 5" long, and then glue on each side

a scrap of the paper you used to print the texture sheet so that your strip is the same

thickness as the block, plus twice the texture paper thickness.


This will be the cutting gauge that allows you to cut the sides of the paper to exactly the

right width to fold over the sides of your block, i.e. it gives you a 'fold allowance'.







This 'tool' is held firmly against the sides of the block whilst the paper, now dry of glue and

hence stronger, is cut around all 4 sides.




You'll end up with the trimmed shape below.




In the picture below, I have shown where the cuts should be made to remove the corners.

 In fact I don't bother to draw lines like that, but just use the sides of the block to guide

 and position the knife blade.






Having cut away all 4 corners, scribe the paper, apply an even smear of PVA all around,

being aware that the side of cut card will quickly absorb the moisture from the PVA, and

fold up each edge in turn.





Press all around with a flat tool such as a ruler, attempting to squeeze any excess glue out

 of  each 'end' so that the corners are well glued.





You will notice that the folded flaps are fractionally wider than the edge of the card.

 Do not try to cut off that little 'smidgin' because if the slab is to glued down on a flat

surface, this tiny rim will press down all around to make a gap-less joint with the

sub-surface, at the same time keeping in any excess glue.







Now press carefully around the block with your 'tool' concentrating on easing any

excess glue into the corner joint.




This should be the result.






I hope the foregoing has been of use to someone and will encourage you to try a bit of

 paper and card scratch-building or to attempt a Scalescenes type model kit.



Doug







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'You may share the labours of the great, but you will not share the spoil...' Aesop's Fables

"Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy" - Benjamin Franklin


In the land of the slap-dash and implausible, mediocrity is king
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 Posted: Sun Mar 21st, 2010 07:58 am
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Robert
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An excellent tutorial Doug, thank you. If you use any other techniques that you think might be useful to others, even possibly the simple ones that you might think everyone knows, then I'm sure we would all like to see them. If you have the time of course.



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Barchester
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 Posted: Sun Mar 21st, 2010 10:08 am
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Petermac
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Superb Doug. :cheers:cheers

Those are two things I'd always found very difficult without either crushing the final result or creasing the paper on the corners.



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 Posted: Sun Mar 21st, 2010 04:01 pm
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Ianbo
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Thank you for that .

Hopefully my next attempt at card or paper scatch building will not end up in the bin.:thumbs



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 Posted: Sun Mar 21st, 2010 04:08 pm
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henryparrot
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A great tutorial Doug

Thankyou for taking the time in preparing and presenting it

cheers Brian

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 Posted: Mon Mar 22nd, 2010 03:42 am
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Marty
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Many thanks Doug.

That should help with my next attempt.



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 Posted: Mon Mar 22nd, 2010 08:47 am
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MikeC
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My thanks to you, Doug, for sharing these techniques. I think I'll need something more than mere knowledge to get results like yours though.

Mike

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 Posted: Mon Mar 22nd, 2010 01:51 pm
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Les
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Excellent Doug.Hopefully my Scalescenes buildings will be better now but sadly I have just been caught going through the sewing box for a suitable needle and have been assigned extra dog walking duties. Many thanks anyway.
Les



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 Posted: Mon Mar 22nd, 2010 05:23 pm
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phill
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Thanks for takeing the time and trouble to do this how too, find it very interesting and i am sure i will be having a go myself.

Phill

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