Saturday, April 6, 2013

Reno job #1: The Post Office

I was at George's Trains a couple of weeks ago and saw this Post Office in the resale section. I liked the size, proportions and colour, so I bought it. It wasn't glued together very well - which will be to my benefit when I take it apart - and has a couple of pieces missing, but I think it will be a fine building after it's renovated. However, the updated version probably won't be a Post Office. Not too sure what it'll be just yet.
The Post Office has a simulated glass block window wall over its main entrance. I thought I'd tune it up a bit and colour some of those blocks much like the above wall section that belongs to a church - built in 1961 - that is down the street from my house. For now, the Post Office is residing on my workbench awaiting disassembly.


  1. Loads of character, for a 'modern' structure. Looking forward to seeing what you do with it. Gotta love glass brick!

  2. Hi Galen,
    It turns out that church has two opposing walls with coloured glass squares. The one I showed in the photo is just a partial wall, the second is fully ground to roof in glass squares. Unfortunately it is usually blocked from view by trees,bushes, and other buildings, but since the trees haven't leafed out yet, it can sort of be seen - I'll need to get a photo while I can :-)

  3. If you hadn't said it was a church, I might have thought it was a public pool building.

    One of my early efforts at simulating glass brick was to use 1/8" thick clear plastic...I think it was lexan, but I'm not sure. It was from a broken 'table talker', one of those formed plastic stands that you'd slip a piece of paper into and set on a cafe table.

    Anyway, I used an Xacto saw to cut grooves into the material then painted the whole side with gray paint to simulate the mortar. I sanded the paint off the surface after it dried in order to make the glass 'frosted'. If I had been more careful and not cut so deep I'd have been happier with my efforts. Plus, I cut grooves in both sides of the material since the inside would be seen and the grooves didn't exactly line up so it's far from perfect.

  4. That sounds like an interesting technique that'll need to give a try.

    Turns out there is community centre with a public pool - which I also think was built in the '60s a few of years after the church - a kilometre or so further down from the church. I need to walk down there again and see what they used for the walls poolside.