Saturday, December 5, 2015

HOJPOJ Reno: Paintin', Documentin' and Fencin'

No theme to the work going on in this post. Just a few odds-and-ends I felt like doin'.
The back of the modules unit is raw balsa, and Mr. Moore only painted a little bit in the upper left corner. If you view the HOJPOJ from the brick factory side, you can see a lot of that raw, unpainted stuff peaking above the roof line. He was tricky and staged his article photos so none of that was visible. In this reno you'll be able to see all sides, so I decided to paint the visible part.
I used a slightly darker shade of grey to make mine distinguishable from E. L. Moore's, and I didn't paint over his work.
As well as decorating the top side of the diorama, I thought I'd detail the other side with scans of the HOJPOJ's article pages.
They're printed on good quality photo paper and glued on along with a couple of labels noting the build's name, that it's an E. L. Moore model, and when it appeared in Railroad Model Craftsman
The article's instructions for making the fence are pretty basic,

The fence is made of ordinary galvanized screening 6' high, with 7' posts set 13' apart.

but, along with the photos it was fairly straightforward to figure out how to put it together. Luckily I had a leftover piece of screen mesh in the garden shed that still had a couple of factory finished edges. Mr. Moore used mesh strips pieces where the finished edge formed the upper edge of the fence.
I drew a 6 foot strip across a paper sheet, taped a yardstick to the outer side of one line, and then taped a piece of mesh - finished edge against the yardstick - to the yardstick. I then used a Sharpie pen to the trace the lower edge of the fence on the mesh using the 6 foot line on the paper as a guide.
Utility shears were used to cut the mesh, giving me a 6 foot wide strip of fencing. 
I cut another strip from a second piece of mesh so I'd have enough for the entire fence and gates.
The 7 foot posts are cut from balsa strip using a Chopper to make the job go faster. Before chopping, I stained with balsa strip stock with some thinned Tamiya acrylic paint XF-84 Dark Iron. When the fencing was completely installed on the base, the fence post tops were stained a bit more. I also did a little general touch-up. 
The fencing was cut to the desired lengths, taped to the paper guide and the fence posts were glued on at 12 foot intervals - a little closer than Mr. Moore's specification, but 12 foot fit my diorama base better.
Here's all the fence ready to be glued to the diorama.
I installed the long fence first - it's 120 HO scale feet long - and propped up the two other pieces to check alignment. Some thick super-glue was dabbed on the fence post bottoms and an old T-square was used to keep the fence straight while I stretched the mesh a bit and held the posts to the ground. This operation was a bit tricky, but it worked in the end.
Once all the fence was super-glued in place, I did a little scenic touch-up around the fence post bottoms to help make it appear the posts went into the ground instead of resting on top. Some white glue was dabbed next to the posts and some extra ground was sprinkled on. In the end, it didn't look too bad. Some grass is going to be added in the next step to make things look a little more summery. I don't completely know what the original looked like, but I thought I'd wing it, as if it rained in this model world, all the exposed dirt would turn to mud :-)

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