Sunday, November 4, 2012

Roads, Sidewalks and Spam-bots

Last week a friend of mine asked if I had any posts about building roads. I had a couple on how I used styrene to build roads and other paved areas. But the question made me realize that I didn’t have ‘Roads’ as a label, so I went and attached one to suitable posts. 

The other thing this question brought up was that earlier this year a Blogger stats server spam-bot kept on pinging an old post called ‘New Sidewalks’ in a feeble attempt to lure me into one of their traps by way of their fake interest in the post. The only way I could get the annoyance to stop was to delete the post. After that I never saw another link in the stats from that spam-bot - although no doubt I’ve jinksed things by even discussing it :-)

That old post had some road building stuff so I thought I’d throw caution to the wind and re-post it. So, here it is, in its entirety, originally posted on 11 January 2010, admired by spam-bots around the world, ‘New Sidewalks’,

I was able to devote one day over the Christmas break to layout building. I thought I'd accomplish a lot, but I was only able to get the new Y-shaped diesel 'parking lot' - hopefully, the subject of another post - and some sidewalks installed. I plan to use sidewalks as a design element to tie the various parts of the layout together -which is weird in someways since this is a model train layout.

The sidewalks are cut from 0.080 inch sheet styrene, painted with thinned, loose coats of Tamyia light gray, Tamyia medium gray and flat black. They are glued in place with gap-filling super glue. The road surfaces were made by first gluing foam core to the train table's plywood base and then gluing a heavy weight piece of watercolour paper on top - I thought that was a good way to create the illusion of a textured, paved surface. Core roadbed strips were used as edging along the sides of the foam core and provided the base for the sidewalks. Results of this road building technique were mixed. In the future I'd simply use styrene sheet for the road surface. It's easier to work with, and will probably look just the same after painting. The road doesn't look too bad, but it is far more pristine than most roads I've driven over in Ontario!

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