Sunday, May 18, 2014

E. L. Moore’s Legacy in the 21st Century: The Age of Plastic, II

When I was at George’s Trains last weekend I was surprised to see these two variants – loosely speaking – on Ma’s Place. This first one – where admittedly the only nod to Ma’s Place is that it uses the sign – was on the shelf reserved for or not-so-high-quality re-sale items.
And this second one – a full-up box-stock build of Speedy Andrews – was in the glass case in the back for better quality re-sale items.
I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised to see artifacts like these around since the kits have been in production for around 45 years.

Back in the ‘70s I also had a thing for the Speedy Andrews kit, but I didn’t have the cash to buy one, so I had a go at building a cardboard and balsa one straight from a Tyco magazine ad. And being a self-centred egotist, I named it after myself :-)
The actual plastic Ma’s Place and its variants are simple projects. I’m building them up more-or-less box-stock regarding looks, but with some minor refinements to their structures.
I’m not planning on using the ‘dirt’ bases for mounting them - they’ll be discarded - so I’ll need to substitute some styrene pieces for the block foundations pieces that are moulded into each base. Also, the floor of each building has a large L-shaped hole that I’ve filled in with a piece of styrene.
This was done so that I could add lighting and not have light shooting out from the floor alien-abduction-style ! The Speedy Andrews and Billy’s auto shop versions come with a floor insert that can be glued into the hole in the garage floor, but since it sits on top of the moulded in surrounding  floor instead of fitting in the hole, I didn’t make use of it. As well, there's an opening for an interior door that connects the two portions of each building. I’ve glued a piece of styrene over it to better control how the building will be lit. 
Also, for the Billy’s kit I used the Ma’s Place façade for the garage portion instead of the large false front that incorporates the garage doors. So, I’ll have 2 buildings in the Ma’s Place style, and one in the Speedy Andrew’s garage style. To wrap up, here's all three buildings base coated with white Krylon spray paint.
This is the 12th instalment in an ongoing series. An index to all posts in the series can be found here.


  1. I've got a version of this kit that will become a low-income Appalachian home. Nowhere near working on it yet, but maybe in a few months, maybe longer. Even so, it's a great starting place for a kitbash - classic lines. Thanks for writing your blog; I especially appreciate these articles about Mr. Moore.

    1. Thanks Galen! I like writing this E. L. Moore series and I'm glad others are finding it of interest. One other thing I should mention about Ma's Place. In the August 1980 issue of Model Railroader, the editorial team used Ma's Place as the starting place for a couple of kitbash projects by Jim Kelly and Art Curren to introduce their readers to kitbashing and 'kit-mingling', as they called it.They are quite interesting projects.