Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Germany’

This is what happens when I just make stuff with no planning whatsoever.  Again.

Much as I’m happy to have a railway where I can run trains round and round, I was getting a bit fed up of looking at a badly painted cork surface and odd wires whenever I use it, so the plan was to move along and get some ground cover down.

Then I remembered that I couldn’t do start on the ground cover before all the buildings were in place, if I wanted the buildings to be properly embedded into the earth with no annoying gaps.

Then I realised that before I started gluing buildings into place some pretty serious thought would have to be given to a back scene, so out came the paintbrushes and thick paper…

We live very close to the region of Germany where they put huge great copper onion domes on the tops of church towers. This always seemed odd to me in a region known for massive lightning storms, but those churches are several hundred years old and still standing so I’m assuming these people know what they’re doing.

Obviously Wörnritzhausen would have to have just such a church tower so I played about with Google Earth until I found a couple of villages with churches the shape I wanted and not the size of cathedrals, which was surprisingly difficult: people around here seem to have taken their ecclesiastical buildings very seriously.

The three houses on the other side are to balance the scene out a bit, as the wall should theoretically continue off into the distance. I considered adding trees and a few more buildings but the perspective was awkward enough as it was without making more lines in different directions, and  I wanted the backscene to be understated and not dominate the model.

Besides, I needed to tidy up and clean the floor before the family came back…

Test fitting on Wörnritzhausen. I’m still wondering what to do on the corner where the roof meets the sky, but apart from that and a nagging feeling that I made it all a bit too understated, reckoned it went okay.

I was going to leave it for a while and decide if I liked it or not, but I’ve since decided that you can have too much testing and the point of making a small model is that I can finish it sometime, so the backscene is now glued down.

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

New Year 2018

We have a friend who is an artist, a proper artist who actually knows what he’s doing and earns money and everything. Every year he sends us and a lot of other people a postcard with an ink drawing on it as a new year card, and every year I told myself I’d try and do the same and promptly forgot about it.

This year I finally got myself into gear and drew a sketch of the Wolfstor in Esslingen am Neckar, then inked the lines over several lunch breaks, and possibly in the occasional dull lecture.

Click here to find the mistakes.

Last week we were given notice of about four modular tests, so I’m model making has slowed dramatically while I get on with revising. Still, at least I managed to make a drawing this year. Maybe I’ll remember to make the 2019 sketch before the year changes…

Read Full Post »

In my annual attempt to squeeze a blog post out of no model making whatsoever, I’ve been looking at the resolutions I made last January to see how I did:

1: Blog once a week,
It’s good for me to keep writing. Besides, I have to step away from college and breathe on occasion, so I’ll try to make sure there is an entry every week, in fact, every Saturday morning.  Anyone bored with this blog should find that my other one is updated weekly as well.

I occasionally use the same material, but hey, it’s free…

I think I actually managed this, much to my surprise. Admittedly this is at the expense of immediacy so I have a couple of posts ready in case of unforeseen family events or exams. I’m not sure if I’ll keep this up for the next year as I’ll have final exams for my Occupational Therapist qualification in the next months and then the fun of finding a job afterwards. We shall see.

2: Build more models.
After all, I need more blogging material. Being an extreme introvert surrounded by people, I need to switch off to be able to breathe each day, and I find model making is excellent for this as a break before dealing with the family in the evening. I also want to use different materials: card wagons, for example, possibly with the finish printed on paper, or clay and wood for buildings.

This years tally is a completed post office, garage, cartoon gate and developing farmhouse, while the Höfelbachbahn is better off by one railcar and a still unfinished van, and the Körschtalbahn has a big diesel coming along slowly. I seem to have made more buildings than trains. That may just be because I find buildings easier, or because I start all my locomotives twice.

3: Finish half built models.
Like the KÖB railcar (which could well rank as the slowest scratchbuilding project ever although it is much further on than this picture from 2011 suggests), or a rebuild of ‘Growler 1’ which has been languishing in a box for (yikes) ten years as it was far too big for 1:43 scale, let alone 1:55. I’d like it to run one day.

Not doing so well here. The Körschtalbahn railcar is now in primer with some piping, but that’s as far as it got, and I didn’t have the heart to lay a finger on the diesel shunter yet.

4: Maybe, just maybe, get Spitzenwald running.
I feel like I owe it to myself after the fight it took to build the baseboards.

Nope, nothing doing.

What with exams and possibly a house move, I’ve been thinking about my current projects and how they fit in life generally. I’ve got some ideas but they aren’t really complete and you’ve been pretty patient reading this far, so I’ll not bore you further…

Read Full Post »

About a week ago I was pretending to have a social life in the local city of Esslingen, while doing a bit more research. Esslingen is known for its medieval city centre and gates, and I was looking for something to adapt to make an entrance for trains to run through and hopefully distract people from the fact they were really running around in circles.

First, because it was nearest the bus stop, is the  Pliensauturm, once one of the most important gates as it guarded the bridge over the river.

Then in what is now the centre, the Schelztor. I’m not sure what it used to guard but it is currently hosting an italian ice cream shop, and as long as I have known it, sported a metal person balancing on a pole. I’m not sure why either.

Someone wasn’t measuring that carefully here, judging by the way all the windows are spaced, and the city crest is anything but central.

On the other end of the city is the Wolf’s gate, still my favourite since I wandered under it as a twenty year old on my first trip ‘abroad’.

Not named for a fearsome winter when the city was invaded by wolves, but a nickname that came about because the two lion statures on the outside were eroded over the years and look like wolves, apparently.

They must have had some very strange wolves locally, that’s all I can say.

It seems that the method for building these was pretty standardized: a three-sided stone box and filling the inside bits with a wooden building, which was probably cheaper than using stone for everything.

On Wornritzhausen, the gate is viewed from the outside, so it’ll be stone faced. The village is too small for anything as grand as Esslingen, but I’m assuming that it needed some security in the golden era when it was a trading point for the area.

So far we have a basic form:


That spindly support will get bigger and the arch will shrink when I add clay to represent the stone covering. Remembering to make sure I had 5mm clearance for the clay was more confusing than I expected.

 

Read Full Post »

HBB_Railcar_17

Your opinion, dear reader, is required.

Obviously, as you are reading this blog, you are a person of exquisite aesthetic taste and style and I require some feedback on the latest addition to the HBB’s railcar, namely the luggage rack on the roof.

The idea is that this gives some much needed overflow to the luggage compartment on peak services, especially on market days, when customers have a tendency to bring purchases on board that try to move of their own accord, so the Hofelbachbahn (or more accurately, the company that bought the railcar in the first place, decided it wasn’t big enough and sold it to the Hofelbachbahn, it makes sense to me so don’t argue) ordered the version with the extra rack.

Trouble is, now I’ve come to actually fit the rack, it looks a bit big and obtrusive. I can’t work out if this is because I’m used to seeing a dip in the roof or because it just doesn’t work.

And if it doesn’t work, why not? Is it too high, too wide?

HBB_Railcar_18

From track level it doesn’t look that far out of place, so maybe I just need to get used to it.

What do you think?

Read Full Post »

Some kind person posted this on the NGRM Forum. It features one of the many narrow gauge railways that used to serve small towns all over Germany.

The Plettenberger Kleinbahn, was a freight and passenger carrying tramway in Plettenberg in the North West of the country. Its purpose was to get products from the factories of Plettenberg for a few kilometres to the standard gauge line, and it expanded up the valley as industry increased, eventually having an impressive 71 connections to factories

By the time this video as made in 1962 a standard gauge railway parallel to the line had reduced services and the increased road traffic was getting in the way. As usual politicians blamed the railway and refused to renew the company’s concession to operate it.

If I magine a red Krokodil running down those streets, I can tell myself the Höfelbachbahn is will have the same sort of atmosphere.

At the very least I can now justify the apallingly tight curves on my model.

Read Full Post »

hbb_railcar_11

This is a railcar with issues. The sides are too flimsy and the construction wasn’t that well thought through. the glazing is a nightmare, and when I tried to glue the side in I found it has a twisted chassis.

Incidentally, “Twisted Chassis” would be a stonking good name for a heavy metal group*.

Apart from that there were all kinds of little bodges to cover up for my lack of planning, so this week I’ll be starting again; again, which seems to have become a sort of tradition for my model making. I’ll be starting with a chassis that has more strength than a deflated balloon, and this time I’ll try to remember to make it narrow enough to avoid Tubby Railcar Syndrome. The thicker sides are partly for strength and partly because I’m incapable of painting around windows that neatly, so I prefer to make a sandwich with gaps in the middle and put all the clear bits in after I’ve finish ed slopping paint about.

I still have the spare sides: they survived being dropped, buried, lost under a laptop for two days and found by Beautiful Daughter who being two years old naturally used them as a camera. At least having them ready saves me some time as I can use those for the inside with a little work, and make a new set (with doors attached this time) for the outer skin, meaning that I may be able to catch up with myself faster than usual and fool people into thinking I know what I’m doing as well.

I’ll admit the last goal is a little optimistic.

*Which would of course be a support band…

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »