Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Art Deco Chapters

When I saw Walthers’ Silver Springs Bus Terminal kit on the shelf at my local hobby store I new I had to have it. Didn’t know what I was going to do with it. Didn’t need a bus terminal, but I liked the art deco styling. This happens a lot with me. I see a kit in a store, I realize it has my name on it, I buy it, it sits on my shelves for awhile, and eventually, after looking at it long enough, I understand what it could become. This one is becoming a Chapters bookstore.

Chapters is the dominate bookstore chain in Ontario. All their outlets appear to be big box stores in big box malls. I’m a serious reader and book lover, so I spend a great deal of time – and money – in these stores. It seems only natural that one resides in a place of honour on my layout.

Although there is variation from one Chapters outlet to another, they have common styling cues – which I figured if I captured them in the model it would signal to the viewer that this is a Chapters store even though I’ve never seen a Chapters as small - or in an art deco style - as the full-scale equivalent of this HO scale model.

The changes I’ve made to this kit are relatively minor. The biggest one was to reduce the depth of the structure so that it would take up less space on the layout. There are large openings on each side wall for installation of doors and windows that lead to passenger loading areas. I decided to eliminate these since an actual Chapters store is unlikely to have such a feature. 

It’s a simple matter of using a razor saw to cut out the wall molding above the opening from the side walls and glue the remaining pieces back together. A little sanding and filing of the remaining pieces helps to achieve a clean, solid joint. A thick styrene plate was glued to the inside of each joint to reinforce the – now shorter – sidewalls.

P.S. Originally I was going to do one long post about the construction of this building, but I realized I was falling into the same pattern as for the Bunn’s Feed & Seed Plant. I want to get in the groove of posting notes about ongoing projects, instead of lengthy ‘article-like’ postings. Old habits die hard - I’m a bit stalled on this project, but the Art Deco Chapters is actually almost done – I’m just in the process of fixing up my printer so I can print the art for the main sign and get on with the final phases of construction.

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